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April 9, 2012
16:14 EDTAET, MOH, SNE, AOL, WCG, GOLD, FB, UNH, CNC, CALL, MSFTOn The Fly: Closing Wrap
Stocks on Wall Street were lower, as investors got their chance to react to Friday’s worse than expected jobs report. Stock futures were sharply lower in pre-market trading, leading to a lower open for the market. The move was broad based, as evidenced by the fact that at one point 99% of the stocks in the S&P 500 index were in negative territory. Investors came back from the holiday weekend ready to sell, but a drift higher throughout the day limited the losses. Big question marks hang in front of the earnings season, which unofficially kicks off tomorrow with Alcoa's (AA) report... ECONOMIC EVENTS: A report Friday, while the U.S. stock markets were closed, showed that the U.S. added 120K net new jobs in March. That total missed expectations and the prevailing rate of growth in recent months. Today's economic calendar had little of note to distract investors from Friday's disappointment... COMPANY NEWS: Microsoft (MSFT) agreed to pay $1.06B to AOL (AOL) to buy many of it patents and license others, sending AOL's shares soaring $7.98, or 43.32%, to $26.40. Microsoft's stock declined with the broader market following the announcement of the deal, falling 42c, or 1.33%, to $31.10. In another $1B tech deal, Facebook (FB) agreed to purchase Instagram, a photo-sharing app for mobile devices. Shares of photo site Shutterfly (SFLY) fell $1.26, or 4.28%, to $28.21 after the deal was announced... Sony (SNE) plans to cut 10,000 jobs, or 6% of its workforce, over the next two years, according to reports... MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers were magicJack VocalTec (CALL), up $2.26, or 10.86%, to $23.07, as it provided guidance above the Street's view and said it will look to increase its stock buyback program, and Randgold Resources (GOLD), up $7.46, or 9.16%, to $88.90, after the company said its 2012 gold production would not be affected by a coup in Mali. Noteworthy losers included Molina Healthcare (MOH), down $9.36, or 26.74%, to $25.65, Centene (CNC), down $7.83, or 15.41%, to $42.97, WellCare Health Plans (WCG), down $5.46, or 7.35%, to $68.78, and Amerigroup (AGP), down $3.27, or 4.85%, to $64.18, after the companies lost their contracts to administer the state of Ohio’s Medicaid program. Ohio instead chose to go with Aetna (AET), United Health Group (UNH), and three others... INDICES: The Dow fell 130.55, or 1.00%, to 12,929.59; the Nasdaq dropped 33.42, or 1.08%, to 3,047.08; and the S&P 500 lost 15.88, or 1.14%, to 1,382.20.
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November 18, 2015
15:40 EDTUNHCongressman says U.S. may need look at pharmacy competition, dealReporter says
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14:49 EDTMSFTEarnings Watch: Salesforce shares up 14% since last earnings report
Salesforce (CRM) is scheduled to report third quarter results after the market close on Wednesday, November 18, with a conference call scheduled for 5:00 pm ET. Salesforce is a provider of enterprise cloud computing solutions that include apps and platform services. EXPECTATIONS: Analysts are looking for earnings per share of 19c on revenue of $1.7B, according to First Call. The consensus range for EPS is 17c-20c on revenue of $1.68B-$1.72B. On its last earnings conference call, Salesforce gave Q3 EPS guidance of 18c-19c and revenue guidance of $1.69B-$1.7B. It also gave FY16 EPS guidance of 70c-72c and FY16 revenue of $6.6B-$6.63B. The company expects FY16 operating cash flow growth of approximately 34%-35%. Salesforce said it is now on pace to reach $7B run rate later this year. LAST QUARTER: On August 20, Salesforce reported second quarter EPS of 19c, beating the consensus analyst forecast of 18c. The company's revenue came in at $1.63B, topping the consensus estimate of $1.60B. It reported deferred revenue on balance of $3.03B as of July 31 and Q2 subscription and support revenue of $1.52B. Salesforce added that Q2 was the "best quarter ever" for the company due to momentum in Europe and growth in the adoption of its core platform. NEWS: Salesforce and Western Union (WU) announced an agreement for Western Union to use Sales Cloud, Community Cloud, Analytics Cloud and App Cloud to automate previously paper-based processes. Salesforce also announced plans to extend its strategic partnership with Microsoft (MSFT). The company said it would double its workforce in the Seattle area. STREET RESEARCH: Brean Capital said Salesforce should be a core holding due its new cloud targets, operating margin expansion and revenue growth in the 20%-30% range year over year. Jeffries said it was impressed with the company's DreamForce conference, but kept an Underperform rating on the stock because the net present value of new business may be negative for Salesforce at this time. In late September, Oppenheimer said that the company's checks were positive. It added that Salesforce's share of the market could be increasing and adds that Salesforce's platform strategy is becoming more popular with customers. PRICE ACTION: Salesforce shares are up over 14% since the company's Q2 report. In afternoon trading ahead of Thursday's report, Salesforce shares are up fractionally.
14:20 EDTFBFacebook fundraising tool bears resemblance to Kickstarter, TechCrunch says
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09:34 EDTFBActive equity options trading on open
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05:56 EDTSNESony Mobile, LG to develop smartphone app processors in-house, DigiTimes says
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05:55 EDTFBFacebook partners with Airtel Africa to bring free basics to 17 countries
In an announcement on Facebook, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said, "In South Africa , we announced with Airtel Africa that we will be bringing free basic services to all 17 countries where they operate. first launched in Zambia and today half of the 30 countries with Free Basics are in Africa. These new launches will bring free services to Burkina Faso, Chad, Gabon, Madagascar, Niger, Nigeria, Republic of the Congo, Sierra Leone and Uganda. We also recently partnered to launch a satellite to provide internet coverage to remote areas of Sub-Saharan Africa starting in 2016. We've also partnered with the Praekelt Foundation to give developers the tools they need to build free basic services to reach people just coming online. Connecting people across the African continent is critical to our mission. We're going to keep pushing forward to develop new ways to bring people online until the whole world is connected." Reference Link
November 17, 2015
18:58 EDTMSFTMicrosoft CEO says building new cyber defense center, NBC reports
Speaking at the Microsoft Government Cloud Forum on Tuesday, CEO Satya Nadella revealed plans to open a Cyber Defense Operations Center, gathering security experts from across the company's suite of products in order to respond to security threats in real-time, reports NBC. Reference Link
16:01 EDTFBOptions Update; November 17, 2015
iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures up 1.32 to 21.07. Option volume leaders: GE BAC AAPL FB NFLX SYF WMT CSCO MU SUNE VRX BABA AMZN HD FCX
10:47 EDTSNEPress Conference to unveil new brain injury technology to be held in New York
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09:35 EDTFBActive equity options trading on open: AAPL FB GE HD
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09:05 EDTUNHOptumRx acquires AxelaCare
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09:02 EDTMSFT, SNEAnalyst pans competing products, says buy Fitbit
Shares of previous high-flier Fitbit (FIT) have dropped about 30% in the last two weeks following the company's third quarter earnings report, but an analyst at Bank of America upgraded his view of the fitness tracker maker this morning, saying that now is the time to buy ahead of fourth quarter results that may be boosted by the "underwhelming" new products being launched by its competitors. UNDERWHELMING COMPETITION: Fitbit's sales guidance for this holiday quarter looks conservative, contends Bank of America analyst Nat Schindler, who notes that the company only had the launch of one new product last December but will have the Charge, Charge HR and Surge to drive sales this season. Schindler also notes that the company's international advertising has expanded into more countries ahead of the holidays this year. Key, however, may be the "underwhelming" lineup of new or updated fitness trackers launched by competitors, such as the Microsoft's (MSFT) Band 2, Jawbone's UP4 and Sony's (SNE) Smartband 2, many of which have only minor improvements and no "must have" features to pull consumers away from Fitbit, Schindler told investors in his research note. PLATFORM PICKING UP STEAM: The analyst also pointed out that Fitbit now has more than 20 companies signed onto its health and wellness platform, including big names like Target (TGT) and Barclays (BCS), which he believes should help drive revenue beats in the upcoming fiscal year due to increased device sales. Also, the additional dashboard data should help Fitbit maintain long-term user engagement, said Schindler. APPLE WATCH: Apple's (AAPL) Apple Watch is largely viewed as the biggest potential competitive threat to Fitbit's offerings, but on the fitness tracker maker's last earnings call CEO James Park said Fitbit's products differ from those of its competitors in several key aspects, including pricing, cross-platform compatibility, brand awareness and product line breadth. Other wearables makers include Garmin (GRMN) and Samsung. PRICE ACTION: Since the day after Fitbit's last earnings report after the market close on November 2, its shares have fallen about 29.5% to close yesterday at $28.80. In pre-market trading this morning, Fitbit shares rose 2% to $29.40.
08:04 EDTWCGStifel to hold a conference
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07:56 EDTMSFTUBS to hold a conference
Global Technology Conference is being held in San Francisco on November 16-18 with webcasted company presentations to begin on November 17 at 10:45 am.; not all company presentations may be webcasted. Webcast Link
06:16 EDTMSFTMicrosoft turns around flawed security technology, NY Times says
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November 16, 2015
17:02 EDTMSFTPoint72 added to lululemon position, subtracted from Netflix position
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16:00 EDTFB, MSFTOptions Update; November 16, 2015
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09:59 EDTFBOmega bought Valeant in Q3, sold some SuneEdison
Leon Cooperman's Omega Advisors gave a quarterly update on its stakes in a filing this morning, disclosing its positions as of September 30. NEW STAKES: Pfizer (PFE), Valeant (VRX) Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA), TerraForm Global (GLBL), Cigna (CI). INCREASED STAKES: Google Class A (GOOGL), Facebook (FB), Delta Air Lines (DAL). DECREASED STAKES: SunEdison (SUNE), Shire (SHPG), Citi (C), KAR Auction (KAR), LyondellBasell (LYB). LIQUIDATED STAKES: McKesson (MCK), 21st Century Fox (FOXA), General Motors (GM), QEP Resources (QEP), eBay (EBAY).
09:37 EDTFBActive equity options trading on open
Active equity options trading on open: AAPL FB ORCL BAC SUNE FDX FCX EXPE NFLX MU AMZN INTC TSLA
09:06 EDTUNHDiplomat seen as compelling amid specialty pharmacy fallout
Shares of specialty pharmacy operator Diplomat Pharmacy (DPLO) and pharmacy benefit manager Express Scripts (ESRX) have each been knocked down by the negative news surrounding the sector amid the troubles faced by Valeant (VRX) and others, but an analyst at Leerink contends in a note to investors that the pullbacks in both stocks provide buying opportunities. BACKGROUND: Drugmaker Valeant and its prior specialty pharmacy partner, Philidor Rx Services, have been at the center of the firestorm engulfing the sector. Following claims that Philidor urged its employees to modify prescriptions to ensure more orders of Valeant-branded drugs rather than generics, as well as other allegations of wrongdoing, Express Scripts (ESRX) and peer CVS Health (CVS) terminated Philidor from their networks. The day after those termination announcements, Valeant said that it was severing all ties with Philidor and that the pharmacy planned to shut down operations as soon as possible, consistent with applicable laws. Valeant has subsequently said that Philidor has committed to cease operations by January 30, 2016, at the latest. More recently, Express Scripts, the nation's largest pharmacy benefit manager, announced that it stopped doing business with Linden Care, accusing it of being a "captive" pharmacy that dispenses mostly products made by Horizon Pharma (HZNP). In turn, Horizon called the idea that Linden Care is a captive pharmacy "entirely false," stating that "at best Express Scripts is being reckless in its allegations and at worse it is intentionally attempting to mislead investors." Express Scripts' move also impacted shares of Insys Therapeutics (INSY), which reportedly also used Linden Care to fulfill prescription for its drugs. DIPLOMAT LIKELY TO STAY IN-NETWORK: Leerink analyst David Larsen acknowledged that recent events indicate that Express Scripts appears to be evaluating certain retail pharmacies and their relationships with manufacturers, but he believes Diplomat's mix of drugs for diseases like multiple sclerosis, HIV, hepatitis C and cancer differentiate it as a "true" specialty pharmacy. Larsen does not think Diplomat is at risk of being excluded from the pharmacy networks of Express Scripts, CVS or UnitedHealth's (UNH) Optum, he tells investors. Larsen expects limited distribution agreements to stay an important channel strategy for drugmakers and believes these agreements are appropriate for high cost specialty drugs that require special handling and additional services to manage patient adherence. The analyst, who thinks Diplomat remains well positioned to deliver annual growth of over 30% in the next several years, keeps an Outperform rating on its shares. EXPRESS BUYING OPPORTUNITY: Larsen also thinks concerns around manufacturer and pharmacy relationships have put unwarranted pressure on shares of Express Scripts. He does not expect Express Scripts to disclose new lawsuits around rebate dollars owed over other manufacturer disputes and keeps an Outperform rating on the stock, which he views as having an "attractive" valuation. WHAT'S NOTABLE: Larsen also thinks that the specialty channel remains an opportunity for Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) and believes its proposed acquisition of Rite Aid (RAD) can strengthen its specialty offering. The analyst keeps an Outperform rating on Walgreens shares as well. PRICE ACTION: Over the last three months, Diplomat Pharmacy shares have declined 28%, Express Scripts has fallen 6% and Walgreens has dropped 14%.
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