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June 17, 2014
07:28 EDTTSS, WMT, NTSP, AXP, JPMAmEx ramps up marketing for 'check alternative' cards, WSJ says
Crowing competition for affluent customers from the likes of JPMorgan (JPM) drove American Express (AXP) to launch Bluebird prepaid cards in partnership with Wal-Mart (WMT) and now AmEx is ramping up its marketing for the card it pitches as an alternative to checking accounts for consumers outside its traditional audience, said The Wall Street Journal. With its move to be a more "inclusive brand," AmEx has moved into territory previously dominated by players like Green Dot (GDOT) and NetSpend, which has been acquired by Total System (TSS), the report noted. Reference Link
News For AXP;WMT;JPM;NTSP;TSS From The Last 14 Days
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November 17, 2015
07:05 EDTWMTWal-Mart narrows FY16 EPS view to $4.50-$4.65 from $4.40-$4.70
CFO Charles Holley says, "We delivered solid earnings per share that was well within our guidance. Looking ahead, we are narrowing our full-year earnings per share guidance to range between $4.50 and $4.65, including a range of $1.40 to $1.55 for the fourth quarter. This includes ongoing headwinds from currency, which we now expect will impact earnings per share by $0.16, compared to $0.15 from last quarter's guidance. We continue to expect relatively flat total sales growth for the year. Without the currency impact, our full-year total net sales growth would be around 3 percent."
07:04 EDTWMTWal-Mart sees Q4 EPS $1.40-$1.55, consensus $1.43
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07:03 EDTWMTWal-Mart reports Q3 continuing ops EPS $1.03, consensus 98c
Reports Q3 revenue $117.41B, consensus $117.79B. Q3 diluted EPS from continuing operations was $1.03, benefited by approximately 4c from an adjustment for certain leases. Currency negatively impacted EPS by 4c. On a constant currency basis1, total revenue was $122.4 billion, an increase of 2.8%.
07:01 EDTAXPGlobal Payments to offer Apple Pay support in Canada
Global Payments (GPN) said it will offer its merchants in Canada the ability to accept American Express (AXP) payments made with Apple (AAPL) Pay. As an Apple Pay-qualified payment provider, Global Payments' robust suite of payments solutions is fully enabled for Apple Pay acceptance, allowing merchants to offer their customers the convenience of Apple Pay acceptance in-store, in-app and on-the-go.
06:39 EDTWMTWal-Mart Asia CEO: China to drive over half of sector growth, CNBC says
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06:27 EDTWMTWal-Mart may see worst y/y decline since 1973, WSJ says
Wal-Mart's stock has slumped roughly 40% since reaching over $90 in January, setting the company up for its worst year over year decline since 1973, Steven Russolillo of the Wall Street Journal's Ahead of the Tape reports. There is not much reason to believe that the retailer's shares will rebound ahead of Tuesday's quarterly report, Russolillo says. Deflationary concerns and the growing e-commerce market represent two structural issues hindering Wal-Mart's ability to stage swift turnaround, the report says. Reference Link
November 16, 2015
16:23 EDTWMTOn The Fly: Top stock stories for Monday
Stock futures were pointing to a higher open early this morning, showing resiliency in the wake of Friday's terrorist attacks in France and the nation's millitary retaliation against ISIS this weekend. However, the futures weakened following the release of manufacturing data from the N.Y. region, leading to a slightly lower open for the broader market. The averages pared their losses and searched for direction in early trading, but by early afternoon the bulls took control and sent the indexes on an uptrend throughout the afternoon. The major averages each notched gains of more than 1% and recaptured much of what they'd lost on Friday. ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., the Empire State index, which measures manufacturing in the N.Y. region, edged up to -10.74 in November, up from last month's -11.4, but below expectations for a -6.5 reading. In Asia, Japan's gross domestic product declined 0.8% in the third quarter, missing expectations for a 0.2% decrease and taking the nation's economy back into recession. COMPANY NEWS: Starwood Hotels & Resorts (HOT) found a buyer, but not the one that recent reports had been foreshadowing. Starwood and Marriott (MAR) announced a deal under which the companies will combine in a cash and stock transaction valued at $12.2B to create the world's largest hotel company. Starwood, which had been linked in media reports to a number of other potential buyers in the past, including Hyatt (H) most recently, fell 3.6% to $72.27 following the deal announcement, while Hyatt rose 3.4% and Marriott added 1.35%. MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was CONSOL Energy (CNX), which advanced 56c, or 7.57%, to $7.96 after Greenlight Capital's David Einhorn reiterated the stock as his "best idea" at Monday's Robin Hood Investors Conference. Also higher was Wal-Mart (WMT), gaining $1.44, or 2.55%, to $57.87 ahead of its third quarter earnings report Tuesday morning, which comes after largely disappointing reports from other major retailers. Among the noteworthy losers was Clovis Oncology (CLVS), which crashed $69.19, or 69.6%, to $30.24 after new data showed the number of patients testing its cancer drug candidate rociletinib with an unconfirmed response who converted to a confirmed response was lower than expected. The company also noted that the FDA requested additional information related to the treatment's confirmed response rates. Also lower was Dillard's (DDS), which lost $4.97, or 6.41%, to $72.54 after reporting lower than expected Q3 results, the latest in a series of disappointments for the sector. Additionally, SunEdison (SUNE) fell 38c, or 7.61%, to $4.55 after quarterly filings revealed that at least two prominent hedge funds exited or trimmed their stakes in the company. INDEXES: The Dow rose 237.77, or 1.38%, to 17,483.01, the Nasdaq gained 56.73, or 1.15%, to 4,984.62, and the S&P 500 advanced 30.15, or 1.49%, to 2,053.19.
15:02 EDTWMTNotable companies reporting before tomorrow's open
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14:08 EDTWMTWal-Mart technical comments ahead of results
The shares are at multi-year lows and in a downtrend heading into earnings news. If there was a bullish surprise, the first important resistance level would be at the 10-week moving average at $60.58. The 10-week is a good proxy for a downtrend resistance line for the current longer-term bearish price channel. Resistance above the top of the channel would be at $61.23. If the news continues to be negative, the channel low at $55.46 would be a first major test of support. Price at that level would mark a fresh 52-week low. Additional support levels to watch as potential downside objectives would be at $53.55 and then at $51.79.
14:00 EDTWMTWal-Mart November 57 straddle priced for 3.5% movement into Q3
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12:04 EDTAXPAmerican Express reports October net write-offs 1.3% vs. 1.2% last month
Reports October 30 days past due loans 1.0% vs. 1.0% last month.
11:42 EDTWMTWal-Mart volatility increases into Q3 and outlook
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11:31 EDTAXPMarriott announces plans to buy Starwood in $12.2B cash and stock deal
Shares of Marriott International (MAR) and Starwood Hotels & Resorts (HOT) fell after the two companies announced that Marriott will acquire Starwood in a cash and stock deal valued at $12.2B. WHAT'S NEW: Under the terms of the agreement, Starwood shareholders will receive 0.92 shares of Marriott Class A common stock and $2 in cash for each share of Starwood stock. When the deal closes, Starwood stakeholders will own roughly 37% of the combined entity's stock, the companies said. Marriott expects the deal to be earnings accretive by the second year after the merger, excluding the impact of transaction and transition costs. Marriott president and chief executive officer Arne Sorenson will remain in both positions following the merger. The transaction, which has been approved unanimously by the boards of both companies, is expected to close in mid-2016. In a statement announcing the deal, Marriott said it remains committed to its management and franchise strategy. Additionally, Marriott said it expects to deliver at least $200M in annual cost savings in the second full year after closing. Marriott expects to return at least $2.25B in dividends and share repurchases to investors, and believes it can reutrn "at least as much" in the first year following the closing. WHAT'S NOTABLE: On a conference call discussing the deal, Sorenson said that Starwood brands will "remain in place" and that he is focused on increasing appeal to younger travelers. Sorenson also said that the agreement includes a $400M break-up fee. Marriott chief financial officer Carl Berquist added that Starwood will continue its asset sale program. Starwood Chairman Bruce Duncan said that "all possible options" were considered and the company spoke to a "wide range" of interested parties. OTHER BIDDERS: On November 2, CNBC's David Faber reported that Starwood and rival Hyatt (H) were still in talks over a potential merger deal and that deal was about "a week away." In addition, The Wall Street Journal reported on October 27 that Shanghai Jin Jiang International Hotels, HNA Group and China Investment Corporation were vying for government clearance to submit an offer to acquire Starwood. On July 30, media reports emerged that Starwood had reached out to possible suitors about a buyout, including InterContinental (IHG), Wyndham Worldwide (WYN), and several sovereign wealth funds. Intercontinental denied it was involved in any such discussions with Starwood the day the story was reported. STREET RESEARCH: In response to the acquisition news, RBC Capital Markets analyst Wes Golladay said that Marriott may look to convert some of Starwood's hotels, likely older Sheratons, to its new Delta brand. PRICE ACTION: In morning trading, Marriott declined 0.14% to $72.64 and Starwood fell 6.25% to $70.24. OTHERS TO WATCH: Hyatt rallied 3.4%, InterContinental was down 1.77% and Wyndham Worldwide lost 2.07% following the deal announcement. American Express (AXP), which announced new benefits to the Starwood Preferred Guest credit card in early June, slipped 0.62% in morning trading.
11:24 EDTJPMClearing House to hold a conference
Clearing House Annual Conference is being held in New York on November 16-18.
11:15 EDTWMTEarnings Watch: Analysts largely downbeat on Wal-Mart after annual meeting
Wal-Mart Stores (WMT) is scheduled to report third quarter earnings before the market open on Tuesday, November 17, with a conference call scheduled for 7:00 am ET. Wal-Mart, a member of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, operates retail stores in various formats under 69 different banners in 27 countries with its "everyday low price" philosophy. EXPECTATIONS: Analysts are looking for earnings per share of 98c on revenue of $117.79B, according to First Call. The consensus range for EPS is $1.07-$1.15 on revenue of $114.86B-$119.57B. In its last earnings report, Wal-Mart forecast Q3 EPS of 93c-$1.05 with Q3 U.S. same store sales projected to grow 2%-3%. LAST QUARTER: Wal-Mart reported second quarter EPS of $1.08, missing analysts' estimate of $1.12, on revenue of $120.2B, beating analysts' estimate of $119.72B. The company said currency negatively impacted Q2 EPS by approximately 4c. Comp sales at Walmart U.S. increased 1.5%, driven by traffic of 1.3%, and Neighborhood Market comps increased approximately 7.3%. Global e-commerce sales for Q2 increased about 16%, the company said. Looking ahead, Wal-Mart cut its outlook for fiscal year 2016 EPS to $4.40-$4.70 from $4.70-$5.05 against estimates at that time for $4.77. Chief Financial officer Charles Holley said operating profit would be pressured for the remainder of the year, due to in store associate wages and additional hours, as well as headwinds from pharmacy reimbursements and ongoing shrink. The company said that the impact from investments in wages, training and additional hours in its stores and clubs will be approximately 24c, including approximately 8c in Q3. Additionally, the company said that along with pharmacy headwinds, higher than expected ongoing shrink in Walmart U.S. will impact full year EPS by around 11c, including about 3c in Q3. Further, the FY16 currency exchange rate impact is expected to be approximately 15c, up 2c from last quarter's revised guidance of 13c. NEWS: At its annual meeting on October 14, Wal-Mart forecast net sales growth of approximately 3% for FY16 excluding the impact of currency exchange fluctuations. The company forecast net sales growth of 3%-4% annually over the next three years, which will add about $45B-$60B in sales. Looking to fiscal year 2017, Wal-Mart forecast EPS down 6%-12% vs. FY16. Wal-Mart also said that the strong dollar is expected to reduce the company's FY15 revenue by $15B, Reuters said. Wal-Mart's board authorized a new $20B share repurchase program and said it expects operating income to bottom out in FY17. During the quarter, Reuters reported that Wal-Mart filed an application with the Federal Aviation Administration to test drones for home delivery, curbside pickup and warehouse inventory checks. The Wall Street Journal said Wal-Mart is slimming down its number of items in an attempt to bolster sales figures, yet the reduction has created tensions with suppliers. STREET RESEARCH: Credit Suisse, Stephens and BofA Merrill Lynch all downgraded Wal-Mart after the retailer's annual meeting based on guidance for declining earnings in FY17 and a lack of earnings growth until FY19. Baird, UBS and Jefferies all cut their price targets on Wal-Mart following the annual meeting. JPMorgan analyst Christopher Horvers said the "depth and degree" of the financial pressures addressed at the annual meeting were "much greater than anticipated." Ahead of the Q3 earnings report, Baird reiterated its Outperform rating and $70 price target and said Wal-Mart shares appear to hold some value for patient investors. Wal-Mart was upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Northcoast on November 13. PRICE ACTION: Wal-Mart shares are down over 21% over the last three months, but are up about 1% to $57.07 in late morning trading ahead of Tuesday's earnings report.
09:42 EDTJPMJPMorgan reports October net credit losses 2.22% vs. 2.21% last month
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08:58 EDTJPM, AXPAmerican Express slips following Marriott, Starwood deal announcement
Shares of American Express (AXP) are slipping in pre-market trading following the news that Marriott (MAR) and Starwood Hotels & Resorts (HOT) have agreed to merge. In early June, American Express and Starwood announced new benefits to the Starwood Preferred Guest credit card. Marriott, however, has its co-brand program with JPMorgan Chase (JPM) and the early weakness in American Express shares could reflect concern over a potential change in the merged hotels' co-brand relationships. In pre-market trading, AxEx shares are down about 0.5% to $70.88.
08:36 EDTWMTWal-Mart holds value for patient long-term investors, says Baird
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07:40 EDTWMTBuffett says lower stakes in Goldman, Wal-Mart doesn't reflect lower confidence
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07:36 EDTWMTBerkshire Hathaway discloses new AT&T stake in quarterly update
Berkshire Hathaway gave a quarterly update on its stakes in a filing this morning. NEW STAKES: AT&T (T), Kraft Heinz (KHC), Liberty Lilac Group (LILA). INCREASED STAKES: Phillips 66 (PSX), Charter (CHTR), Liberty Media (LMCK), Suncor (SU), General Motors (GM). DECREASED STAKES: Goldman Sachs (GS), Wal-Mart (WMT), Deere (DE), Chicago Bridge & Iron (CBI), WABCO (WBC). LIQUIDATED STAKES: Viacom (VIAB).
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