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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
December 13, 2012
16:25 EDTSAM, S, AZN, ZAGG, CLWR, RIGL, BBYOn The Fly: Closing Wrap
Stocks on Wall Street finished lower but off their worst levels amid more political gamesmanship over the fiscal cliff. Both House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid made comments regarding the increasing gridlock in negotiations, sending the averages lower just before midday. The averages touched their lows around 2:00 pm, but rallied in the last half hour of trading after reports that the President would meet with Speaker Boehner this evening for further cliff talks... ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., weekly jobless claims fell 29,000 to 343,000, versus expectations for a drop to 369,000. Producer prices in the month of November fell 0.8%, versus an expected decline of 0.5%. "Core" prices, excluding food and energy, rose 0.1%, which matched expectations. Retail sales rose 0.3% in November, which missed expectations for an increase of 0.5%. In Europe, the region's finance ministers approved the release of more financial aid to Greece and came to terms on a foundation for ECB oversight of a true banking union... COMPANY NEWS: Shares of Clearwire (CLWR) rose 41c, or 14.91%, to $3.16 after Sprint (S) disclosed an offer to buy the remaining stake in the company it does not already own for $2.90 per share. Clearwire said that its talks with Sprint are ongoing. Meanwhile, Sprint shares slipped fractionally, down 2c, or 0.35%, to $5.64... MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was Best Buy (BBY), up $1.94, or 15.93%, to $14.12 after the Star Tribune said the company's founder Richard Schulz will soon make an offer for the company. Also higher were ZAGG (ZAGG), up 73c, or 10.27%, to $7.84 after the company announced a $10M share repurchase program, and Boston Beer (SAM), up $17.71, or 15.50%, to $131.94 after raising its FY12 EPS guidance. Among the noteworthy losers was Rigel Pharmaceuticals (RIGL), which fell $2.94, or 34.88%, to $5.49 after an RA drug it is developing in partnership with AstraZeneca (AZN) failed to meet one of its endpoints in a trial. Shares of AstraZeneca also traded down $1.44, or 2.94%, to $47.46... INDICES: The Dow was down 74.73, or 0.56%, to 13,170.72; the Nasdaq was down 21.65, or 0.72%, to 2,992.16; and the S&P 500 was 9.03, or 0.63%, to 1,419.45.
News For CLWR;S;BBY;ZAGG;SAM;RIGL;AZN From The Last 14 Days
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February 12, 2016
08:30 EDTSSprint downgraded to Reduce from Hold at HSBC
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07:01 EDTBBYBed Bath & Beyond downgraded to Perform from Outperform at Oppenheimer
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07:00 EDTBBYBest Buy downgraded to Perform from Outperform at Oppenheimer
Oppenheimer analyst Brian Nagel downgraded Best Buy to Perform citing the challenging environment for consumer spending. The analyst does not expect a "quick snapback" for Hardlines Retail stocks.
February 11, 2016
10:21 EDTSSprint says extending 50% offer to customers from AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon
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February 9, 2016
09:56 EDTAZNIntercept higher following report of vague takeover chatter
Shares of Intercept Pharmaceuticals (ICPT) are moving after United Kingdom blog Proactive Investors discussed "reheated rumours" of a takeover. "Vague talk" has Intercept teaming up with CenterView Partners to advise on a sale, the blog states. It mentions AstraZeneca (AZN) as a possible suitor now that Shire (SHPG) has reached an agreement to acquire Baxalta (BXLT). Shares of Intercept, which is developing treatments for chronic liver diseases, are up 4% to $97.39 in early trading.
09:50 EDTAZNIntercept rumored to be working with advisor on sale, Proactive Investors says
There was "vague talk" in the market that Intercept (ICPT) has hired CenterView Partners as an advisor to explore a sale and "attention is said to have switched" to AstraZeneca (AZN) as one of a number of possible buyers, according to Proactive Investors. Reference Link
February 8, 2016
10:00 EDTAZNOn The Fly: Analyst Downgrade Summary
Today's noteworthy downgrades include: A-Mark Precious Metals (AMRK) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at B. Riley... Antero Midstream (AM) downgraded to Neutral from Outperform at Baird... AstraZeneca (AZN) downgraded to Hold from Buy at HSBC... Baker Hughes (BHI) downgraded to Equal Weight at Morgan Stanley... Brixmor (BRX) downgraded to Neutral from Outperform at Boenning & Scattergood... CBOE Holdings (CBOE) downgraded to Underperform from Outperform at CLSA... Cisco (CSCO) downgraded to Buy from Conviction Buy at Goldman... Citi Trends (CTRN) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at MKM Partners... Commerzbank (CRZBY) downgraded to Underperform from Market Perform at Keefe Bruyette... DexCom (DXCM) downgraded to Neutral from Outperform at Baird... EnLink Midstream (ENLC) downgraded to Underperform from Outperform at Baird... Energy Transfer Equity (ETE) downgraded to Neutral from Outperform at Baird... Energy Transfer Partners (ETP) downgraded to Neutral from Outperform at Baird... Eversource (ES) downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight at Barclays... Genesis Healthcare (GEN) downgraded to Sell from Neutral at UBS... Givaudan (GVDNY) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Goldman... HSBC (HSBC) downgraded to Underweight from Equal Weight at Morgan Stanley... Nomura (NMR) downgraded to Hold from Buy at Deutsche Bank... Novo Nordisk (NVO) downgraded to Sell from Neutral at UBS... ONEOK Partners (OKS) downgraded to Underperform from Neutral at Baird... ONEOK (OKE) downgraded to Neutral from Outperform at Baird... PPL Corp. (PPL) downgraded to Hold from Buy at Evercore ISI... Plains All American (PAA) downgraded to Underperform from Outperform at Baird... Plains GP Holdings (PAGP) downgraded to Underperform from Neutral at Baird... Quanta Services (PWR) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at UBS... Ralph Lauren (RL) downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at Atlantic Equities... Sparton (SPA) downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at Barrington... Tableau (DATA) downgraded to Equal Weight at Morgan Stanley... Tallgrass Energy GP (TEGP) downgraded to Neutral from Outperform at Baird... WisdomTree (WETF) downgraded to Underperform from Market Perform at Keefe Bruyette.
10:00 EDTZAGGOn The Fly: Analyst Upgrade Summary
Today's noteworthy upgrades include: Amedisys (AMED) upgraded to Outperform from Perform at Oppenheimer... American Campus (ACC) upgraded to Buy at Canaccord... Beacon Roofing (BECN) upgraded to Strong Buy from Outperform at Raymond James... Big 5 Sporting (BGFV) upgraded on potential Sports Authority closures at Stifel... CenterState Banks (CSFL) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Fig Partners... Cisco (CSCO) upgraded to Neutral from Underperform at Macquarie... Dollar Tree (DLTR) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Telsey Advisory... Dow Chemical (DOW) upgraded to Positive from Neutral at Susquehanna... Essex Property Trust (ESS) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Mizuho... Globant (GLOB) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Citi... Kinross Gold (KGC) upgraded on valuation, higher gold price at BMO Capital... L Brands (LB) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Brean Capital... Marvell (MRVL) upgraded to Buy from Sell at B. Riley... Munich Re (MURGY) upgraded to Neutral from Underperform at Credit Suisse... OM Asset Management (OMAM) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Citi... Orbital ATK (OA) upgraded to Overweight from Sector Weight at KeyBanc... SCANA (SCG) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Mizuho... Sensient (SXT) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Gabelli... St. Jude Medical (STJ) upgraded to Hold from Sell at Canaccord... Suffolk Bancorp (SCNB) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Fig Partners... Supernus (SUPN) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Jefferies... Ultimate Software (ULTI) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at FBR Capital... ZAGG (ZAGG) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Northland... athenahealth (ATHN) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Topeka.
08:27 EDTAZNAstraZeneca downgraded to Hold from Buy at HSBC
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06:51 EDTZAGGZAGG upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Northland
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06:28 EDTAZNPharma trade group rolls out ad campaign aimed at lawmakers, WSJ says
The pharmaceutical industry is launching a new ad campaign with the intention of improving its reputation with lawmakers in an effort to lobby against drug price restrictions, the Wall Street Journal reports. The industry's biggest trade group the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, or PhRMA, says it plans to spend several million dollars this year, and 10% more than it spent last year, on digital, radio, and print advertisements that highlight the sector's role in developing new drugs and advancing medical science, the report says. Publicly traded companies in the space include AstraZeneca (AZN), Bristol-Myers (BMY), Eli Lilly (LLY), GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), Merck (MRK), Novartis (NVS), Pfizer (PFE), Roche (RHHBY) and Sanofi (SNY). Reference Link
February 4, 2016
12:44 EDTAZNOn The Fly: Top stock stories at midday
Stocks on Wall Street had an up and down morning, with the Dow swinging by triple digits in either direction. The market opened lower as oil prices lost their early gains, but as oil began to move higher so did stocks. When oil prices met resistance near the $34 a barrel level it began to pare its gains, once again taking stocks with it. The averages are now back in the green as investors await tomorrow's monthly jobs report. ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., the Labor Department said that productivity fell at an annual rate of 3% in the fourth quarter, marking the biggest quarterly decline in nearly two years and worse than the expected decline of 2%. Labor costs rose 4.5% in the fourth quarter, versus expectations for an increase of 4.3%. Initial jobless claims rose to 285,000 in the week ended January 30, versus expectations for 277,000 first-time claims. Factory orders declined 2.9% in December, versus expectations for them to be down 2.8% for the month. In Europe, the European Commission lowered its 2016 economic growth forecast for the 19-nation single currency area to 1.7% from the 1.8% expansion the commission had forecast in November. The Bank of England also cut its economic growth forecasts, saying it now expects Britain's economy to grow 2.2% this year and 2.3% next year, which is down from the 2.5% growth for 2016 and 2.6% in 2017 that it previously predicted. Additionally, the BoE maintained its bank rate and held the size of its asset purchase program steady. COMPANY NEWS: Shares of GoPro (GPRO) sunk to an all-time low after the action camera maker reported fourth quarter revenue that fell $60M short of expectations and guided toward sales in the new quarter that were even further below the consensus forecast. GoPro, which also guided to losses in the first quarter and named a new CFO, fell as low as $9.01 earlier in the session before cutting its losses to be down about 8% near noon... Sumner Redstone stepped down as Executive Chairman of both CBS (CBS) and Viacom (VIA, VIAB), being replaced by the CEOs of the companies in both cases. CBS shares were up 1% after Leslie Moonves was named the next Chair of its board, while Class A shares of Viacom were up about 1.5% after Philippe Dauman was selected to succeed Redstone... ConocoPhillips (COP) fell nearly 7% after the oil and gas explorer reported a worse than expected quarterly loss and slashed its dividend to 25c from 74c per share. CEO Ryan Lance said the decision to reduce the dividend was a "difficult one," but that the company believes it is prudent to plan for lower commodity prices for a longer period of time. MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was Hersha Hospitality (HT), which rallied 14% after it announced that it signed agreements with Cindat to form a joint venture for seven of the company's hotels in Manhattan for $571.4M. Also higher was VirnetX (VHC), which gained 53% after it was awarded $625.6M in a verdict against Apple (AAPL) for infringing four VirnetX patents. In addition, GrubHub (GRUB) and ProtoLabs (PRLB) were up 15% and 12%, respectively, after reporting quarterly earnings. Among the noteworthy losers were Ralph Lauren (RL), Kohl's (KSS), and AstraZeneca (AZN), which were down 17%, 19%, and 7%, respectively, after reporting quarterly earnings. INDEXES: Near midday, the Dow was up 70.02, or 0.43%, to 16,406.68, the Nasdaq was up 6.50, or 0.14%, to 4,510.74, and the S&P 500 was up 3.90, or 0.2%, to 1,916.43.
06:35 EDTAZNAstraZeneca CEO: Will only do immediately accretive acquisitions, Reuters says
AstraZeneca CEO said that the company will only do more acquisitions if they are immediately accretive, Reuters reports, citing comments from CEO Pascal Soriot to reporters. Soriot added that the company's MYSTIC lung cancer combination study is moving rapidly, the report says. Reference Link
06:27 EDTAZNAstraZeneca sees FY16 core EPS down low to mid single-digit percentage
Sees FY16 total revenue down low to mid single-digit percentage. The company said the guidance "incorporates the dilutive effects arising from the Acerta Pharma and ZS Pharma transactions announced in 2015." It added, "The guidance also assumes the loss of exclusivity for Crestor in the US from May 2016. Externalisation Revenue is expected to be ahead of that in FY 2015, including an increasing element of recurring income arising from prior agreements. This is in line with the Company's long-term business model." AstraZeneca said core R&D costs are expected to be at a similar level to FY15. The company said it is also committed to materially reducing Core SG&A costs in FY16.
06:26 EDTAZNAstraZeneca reports Q4 core EPS 94c, consensus 94c
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February 3, 2016
14:48 EDTAZNNotable companies reporting before tomorrow's open
Notable companies reporting before tomorrow's open, with earnings consensus, include Philip Morris (PM), consensus 81c... AstraZeneca (AZN), consensus 88c... Occidental Petroleum (OXY), consensus (12c)... ConocoPhillips (COP), consensus (65c)... Cigna (CI), consensus $1.80... Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), consensus $3.01... Boston Scientific (BSX), consensus 25c... Charter Communications (CHTR), consensus (12c)... Ralph Lauren (RL), consensus $2.13... Dunkin' Brands (DNKN), consensus 50c... GrubHub (GRUB), consensus 14c... Level 3 (LVLT), consensus 53c... AmerisourceBergen (ABC), consensus $1.25... Cummins (CMI), consensus $2.11.
11:25 EDTAZNAstraZeneca management to meet with Jefferies
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February 2, 2016
17:03 EDTZAGGZAGG and mophie to combine
ZAGG Inc and mophie inc. announced the signing of a definitive merger agreement under which ZAGG will acquire mophie. The transaction will leverage the unique strengths of two industry leaders in the mobile accessories sector to create a business with greater product diversification and improved operational capabilities."This strategic combination of two industry innovators with complementary product, brand and distribution platforms will enable us to deliver increased value for our customers and shareholders," said Randy Hales, President and Chief Executive Officer of ZAGG. "We see numerous opportunities to drive revenue growth and increase profitability by leveraging the strengths of both organizations to strengthen product development, improve brand presence, and expand distribution."ZAGG has agreed to pay $100 million at closing, plus the amount by which 5X Adjusted EBITDA exceeds $100 million over a 12-month earn-out period. The 12-month earn-out period will run from April 1, 2016 to March 31, 2017. The purchase price at closing will be funded with cash and debt. The earn-out will be financed through a combination of cash, debt and up to $5 million in ZAGG common stock. The agreement also allows mophie to collect approximately $15 million from certain pre-merger tax and custom duties refunds and real estate sale proceeds, if received post-closing. During the earn-out period the management teams will work collaboratively to identify operational efficiencies through the adoption of best practices from both companies. The transaction is expected to close during the first quarter of 2016 subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals. The board of directors of each company have unanimously approved the transaction.
January 31, 2016
11:39 EDTSS&P falls 5% in January despite second straight winning week to close month
Stocks finished the month of January with two straight winning weeks, but investors are still glad to see the calendar flip as those winners only cut the S&P's loss to 5% for the month. With growth worries abounding amid troubling signs from China and as oil languishes below $35 per barrel, the manufacturing readings from China, Europe, and the U.S. due out on Monday will be essential to whether the new month continues the uptrend of the end of January or the dour tone that dominated the early half of the month. MACRO NEWS: The Federal Reserve kept interest rates unchanged following its policy meeting this week, as almost universally expected. In its accompanying statement, the central bank said its committee members expect that economic conditions will "evolve in a manner that will warrant only gradual increases in the federal funds rate." The group added that inflation is expected to "remain low in the near term, in part because of the further declines in energy prices, but to rise to 2% over the medium term as the transitory effects of declines in energy and import prices dissipate and the labor market strengthens further"... In other domestic economic news, the Commerce Department's first read on fourth quarter gross domestic product came in at 0.7% annualized growth, below the already anemic 0.8% growth forecast. The S&P/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index rose 5.8% from the prior year in November, topping expectations for a 5.7% year-over-year increase. The separate FHFA house price index showed a monthly gain of 0.5% in November, matching the consensus forecast. Markit's services PMI for January came in at 53.7, missing the 54.0 forecast. The preliminary reading of the Conference Board's consumer confidence index for January came in at 98.1, topping the 96.5 reading that was expected. New home sales surged 10.8% to a 544,000 annualized pace in December, topping expectations and hitting their highest level in 10 months. Initial jobless claims fell to 278,000 last week, versus the expected 281,000 first-time claims. Durable goods orders dropped 5.1% in December, versus expectations for a decrease of 0.7%. The core reading, which removes transportation items, was down 1.2%, versus expectations for a decline of 0.1%. The University of Michigan consumer sentiment index slipped to 92.0 in the final January print, missing the 93.0 reading that was forecast... In a surprising move in Asia, the Bank of Japan introduced a rate of minus 0.1% on certain excess holdings of cash while maintaining the pace of its asset purchases. Japan also reported data pointing to a softening economy, as total CPI grew 0.2% year-over-year in December, core CPI rose at only a 0.1% pace and industrial production fell a preliminary 1.4% month-over-month in December. COMPANY NEWS: McDonald's (MCD) advanced Monday after the fast food giant reported better than expected earnings and comparable sales growth for the fourth quarter, powered by the launch of All Day Breakfast in the U.S.... Earnings season accelerated Tuesday as four members of the bluechip Dow Jones Industrial Average posted results before the opening bell. 3M (MMM) was the top advanced on the index with a gain of over 5%, while Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), Procter & Gamble (PG) and DuPont (DD) all notched gains that day following their reports as well... Apple (AAPL) declined more than 6.5% on Wednesday after the tech giant reported first quarter earnings that topped consensus estimates, but also issued revenue guidance for the new quarter that missed expectations. The company was noted by several analysts as taking a particularly downbeat tone in its earnings conference call, invoking the difficult macroeconomic environment and weakness it has recently seen in China. Apple was not the worst performer in the Dow that day, as Boeing (BA) shares plummeted nearly 9% after its profit outlook for the new fiscal year fell far short of the Street's consensus forecast... Facebook (FB) surged 15.5% on Thursday after the social media giant's fourth quarter earnings and revenue beat expectations. A number of Wall Street analysts increased their price targets for the stock following the report, including Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster, who hiked his target to a "Street-high" $170 per share. The same day, Caterpillar (CAT) reported better than expected quarterly earnings, excluding certain items, but its revenue came in below the consensus forecast and the heavy equipment maker warned that it does not anticipate an improvement in the world economy or commodity prices in 2016. The stock, which had declined almost 20% in the last three months prior to this morning's report, rebounded almost 5% after the company jumped over the lowered bar that had been set by bearish analysts... On Friday, shares of Amazon (AMZN) declined more than 7.5% after the company's fourth quarter results came in below expectations. Meanwhile, Microsoft (MSFT), which reported better than expected earnings, gained almost 6%. Chevron (CVX) reported a quarterly loss due to taking impairments and other charges of $1.1B. The company, which also reported that its average sales price per barrel of crude oil and natural gas liquids in the U.S. was $35 in fourth quarter, down from $66 a year ago, edged up 0.7% to $86.44... Among the many others reporting earnings this week, Visa (V), Mastercard (MA), Under Armour (UA), Sprint (S) and Biogen (BIIB) gained immediately following their reports, while Qualcomm (QCOM), eBay (EBAY), U.S. Steel (X), VMware (VMW) and Anthem (ANTM) all slid following their own... Xerox (XRX) announced plans to separate into two independent publicly-traded companies: one focused on Document Technology and another Business Process Outsourcing company. Xerox also announced an agreement related to the governance of the Business Process Outsourcing company under which six directors of the new company will be selected by Xerox and three will be selected by current Xerox shareholder Carl Icahn... Terex (TEX) surged more than 36% higher on Tuesday after receiving a $30 per share acquisition offer from China's Zoomlion. Terex peers Manitowoc (MTW), Joy Global (JOY) and Oshkosh (OSK) also gained after the offer was disclosed... Weight Watchers (WTW) shares soared nearly 20% Tuesday after noted shareholder and partner Oprah Winfrey tweeted a video detailing her progress using the company's program, indicating that she'd already lost 26 pounds thanks to its plan... AIG (AIG) provided its much-anticipated strategy update, committing to return at least $25B to shareholders over the next two years and announcing the sale of AIG Advisor Group to Lightyear Capital and PSP Investments. The company, under ongoing pressure from activist investors including Carl Icahn, also said it will publicly offer a portion of its United Guaranty unit, though it expressly rejected a full company breakup... SunEdison (SUNE) gained 18% during the week after agreeing to new corporate governance initiatives with David Einhorn's Greenlight Capital, including amending its bylaws to restrict equity issuances for two years without a supermajority board vote... Twitter (TWTR) slumped nearly 6% this week after CEO Jack Dorsey confirmed the departure of four company executives, leading research firm Stifel to downgrade the shares. INDEXES: The Dow gained about 2.2% to close at 16,466.30; the S&P 500 rose about 1.6% to close at 1,940.24; the Nasdaq advanced about 0.4% to close at 4,613.95.
January 29, 2016
07:11 EDTAZNAllergan enters into global agreement with AstraZeneca for ATM-AVI
Allergan announced that it has entered into a global agreement with AstraZeneca to develop and commercialize ATM-AVI, an investigational, fixed-dose antibiotic combining aztreonam and avibactam. Together, the two companies will evaluate the combination to treat serious infections caused by metallo betalactamase MBL-producing Gram-negative pathogens, a difficult-to-treat sub-type of carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae, or CRE, for which there are currently very limited treatments, thus presenting a new treatment option for patients with MBL-producing pathogens. Under the terms of the agreement, Allergan will maintain commercialization rights in the U.S. and Canada and AstraZeneca will maintain commercialization rights in all other countries.
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