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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
January 7, 2013
18:26 EDTDELL, BX, IBMDell corporate strategy VP leaves company for Blackstone, Reuters reports
David Johnson, senior VP for corporate strategy at Dell (DELL), is leaving the company for a position at Blackstone Group (BX), according to a Reuters report. The report notes Johnson oversaw $10B in acquisitions at Dell after joining the company from IBM (IBM) in 2009. Reference Link
News For DELL;BX;IBM From The Last 14 Days
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July 25, 2014
14:31 EDTIBMIBM, Globalfoundries fail to reach deal on chip-making business, Bloomberg says
11:13 EDTBXBlackstone in discussions to acquire 8 building in Italy, Bloomberg says
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July 24, 2014
12:43 EDTIBMIBM, California partner on unifying state agency data in cloud, USA today says
IBM has been enlisted to unify the information technology systems of hundreds of state California agencies in a $400M partnership dubbed CalCloud, says USA Today. Reference Link
10:37 EDTIBMBlackBerry CEO says in enterprise partnership talks, FT reports
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08:30 EDTBXCarlyle may be last firm in rigging suit as peers near settlement, NY Post says
Carlyle Group (CG) may soon be the only private equity firm left to settle a suit that accused it and several of its peers of conspiring to hold down deal prices and one source close to the situation said “my expectation is there will be a trial,” according to The New York Post. Bain Capital, Silver Lake and Goldman Sachs (GS) previously settled for a combined $150.5M and KKR (KKR), Blackstone (BX) and TPG Capital are expected to settle for an amount above that "within days," the report said. Reference Link
July 23, 2014
08:01 EDTBXBlackstone acquires majority stake in Service King Collision Repair Centers
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07:45 EDTBXSEC to approve money fund rules with exemptions for discount brokers, WSJ says
New money-market mutual fund rules that are expected to be approved at a Securities and Exchange Commission meeting on Wednesday will exempt discount brokers like Charles Schwab (SCHW) from some provisions, reported The Wall Street Journal. Under the SEC's planned rules, "prime" money funds that are held by corporations and institutional investors will have to abandon a fixed $1-a-share price and float in value like other mutual funds, according to the report, citing people familiar with the matter. Analysts said Schwab and other large money-fund sponsors, Vanguard and Fidelity, would do well under the plan, according to the report. Blackstone (BX) also offers money-market mutual funds. Reference Link
July 22, 2014
17:31 EDTIBMApple sees business as a catalyst for iPad sales
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15:49 EDTBXBlackstone to buy majority stake in Service King from Carlyle, WSJ says
Blackstone's (BX) purchase from Carlyle Group (CG) of the majority stake in the repair chain values the company at about $650M, according to The Wall Street Journal, citing a source. Reference Link
14:25 EDTBXBlackstone to buy majority stake in Service King from Carlyle, Dow says
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13:18 EDTIBMEarnings Preview: Apple reports after stock split, Beats purchase, iOS 8 launch
Apple (AAPL) is set to report third quarter earnings after the market close on Tuesday, July 22, with a conference call scheduled for 5:00 pm ET. Apple, the world's most valuable company by market capitalization, is the manufacturer of the iPhone and iPad, among other desktop and mobile computing devices. EXPECTATIONS: Analysts are looking for earnings per share of $1.23 on revenue of $37.99B, according to First Call. The consensus range for EPS is $1.14-$1.37 on revenue of $36.58B-$40.31B. In a note to investors, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster said Street analysts expect year-over-year iPhone sales growth of 14% to 35M-36M units, flat iPad sales of 14M-15M units, and a Q3 gross margin of 38%. Munster added that he expects Apple to guide Q4 revenues to $39B-$41B, which is in keeping with Street estimates for about $40.4B in Q4 revenue. LAST QUARTER: Apple reported second quarter EPS of $11.62 on revenue of $45.6B, which topped estimates for $10.18 and $43.5B, respectively. Apple reported iPhones sales of 43.7M units, iPad sales of 16.35M units and Mac sales of 4.14M. Apple said it sees Q3 revenue of $36B-$38B and a gross margin of 37%-38%. Along with its Q2 report, Apple announced a seven-for-one stock split. Apple also announced that its board raised its share repurchase authorization to $90B from the $60B level announced last year and an increase to the company’s quarterly dividend of approximately 8% to $3.29 per common share. NEWS: On May 28, Apple confirmed that it agreed to buy Beats Music, which operates a streaming music service, and Beats Electronics, which makes and sells electronic music products such as headphones and speakers, for $3B. As part of the acquisition, Beats co-founders Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre will join Apple. Apple said at that time that it expects the transaction to close in Q4. On June 2, Apple announced OS X Yosemite, a new version of OS X redesigned and refined with a new look, new apps and new continuity features. Apple also unveiled iOS 8, a new version of its mobile operating system with new features for users and developers. Among the features were iCloud Photo Library, which allows user to enjoy photos and videos more easily across devices, new Messages features to easily share voice, video or photos, and a new Health app. Apple noted that the software development kit, or SDK, for iOS 8 was its "biggest developer release ever," with more than 4,000 new APIs. Apple and IBM announced last week that they would collaborate to provide mobile solutions for businesses. Under the deal, the companies will develop more than 100 enterprise solutions, including native apps, for Apple's iPhone and iPads. Moreover, IBM will sell iPhone and iPads to all of its business clients around the world, the companies noted. Also last week, Apple announced that Susan Wagner, founding partner and director of BlackRock (BLK), has been elected to Apple's board and that Bill Campbell, the board’s longest-serving member, is retiring after 17 years of service. Mac Rumors reported on July 10 that Apple was said to have ordered 68M iPhone 6 devices, citing a report in Taiwan's Business Weekly. That's double the amount of phones that the tech giant ordered prior to launching the iPhone 5 in 2012, the tech blog noted. The Wall Street Journal subsequently claimed that Apple has asked its suppliers to manufacture between 70M-80M of its two upcoming large-screen iPhones by the end of the year. ANALYST OPINION: On the day after Apple's last quarterly report, CLSA upgraded its rating on the shares to Buy from Outperform. On May 9, ISI Group downgraded Apple to Buy from Strong Buy, citing valuation. On June 2, following Apple's launch event for iOS 8, Piper Jaffray said it believed parts of Apple's new operating system point towards a possible iWatch later in the year and potential connected home products in the future. Piper said at that time that Apple remains on track to deliver multiple new product categories by the end of 2014. On June 17, Societe Generale upgraded Apple to Buy from Hold. On July 14, Barclays raised its rating on Apple to Overweight from Equal Weight, citing its channel checks that indicated near-term upside to consensus estimates. The firm also believes troubles at Samsung are creating an opportunity for Apple to regain market share and raised its price target for Apple shares to $110 from $95. The same day, Morgan Stanley said its survey results suggest June quarter iPhone demand upside. The firm raised its iPhone unit estimate to 36M from 34M and increased its EPS estimate to $1.24. Morgan Stanley increased it price target on Apple to $110 per share. Yesterday, JMP Securities upgraded Apple to Outperform from Market Perform, as the firm thinks the company is poised to report higher than expected sales and gross margins over the near-term and intermediate term. JMP set a price target of $135 on the stock. In his note previewing Apple's quarter, Munster wrote that Apple's guidance for its September-end quarter should tell investors if new iPhones are launching in September or later in the year. The Piper analyst expects a typical September launch, which could give the company 5 or 12 days of sales with the new phone depending on a standard Friday launch and its timing. Munster estimated the potential 7 day swing in the timing of the new phone could mean a 3M-4M unit and about $2B difference in the guidance for Q4, citing recent weekly run-rates for iPhone sales near launch quarters. PRICE ACTION: Each Apple shareholder of record at the close of business on June 2 received six additional shares for every share held on the record date and trading began on a split-adjusted basis on June 9. Shares of Apple advanced about 8% on the first day of trade following its Q2 report. Since the first day of trade following its last quarterly report, shares of Apple are up nearly 26%. In early afternoon trading ahead of its Q3 report tonight, Apple was up fractionally to just over $94 per share.
07:05 EDTIBMIBM promotes Frances West to Chief Accessibility Officer
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July 21, 2014
11:31 EDTIBMXerox names Kennedy Chief Marketing Officer
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July 18, 2014
16:47 EDTIBMMarket ends week higher as earnings, M&A offset geopolitical tensions
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16:20 EDTIBMOn The Fly: Closing Wrap
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12:42 EDTIBMOn The Fly: Midday Wrap
Stocks on Wall Street began the session in positive territory and have remained there throughout the morning. The averages moved in a narrow range for most of the opening hour of the session but spurted to higher levels during the second hour. Investors appear to be using yesterday’s sell-off as a buying opportunity, despite the ongoing events in Russia and Israel that largely contributed to yesterday’s action. ECONOMIC EVENTS: The first release of the University of Michigan consumer sentiment index for July fell to 81.3 after ending June with an 82.5 reading. The leading economic indicator index rose 0.3% to 102.2, which was a bit below the forecast for an increase of 0.5%. COMPANY NEWS: Class A shares of Google (GOOGL) advanced over 3% after the search giant reported quarterly revenue that beat expectations last night. Following its report, at least three Wall Street research firms raised their price targets on the stock, while noted tech analyst Collin Gillis of BGC Financial upgraded the stock to Buy from Hold... Dow component General Electric (GE) reported second quarter EPS of 39c, matching the consensus forecast, and revenue that just missed the consensus view of analysts. The company also reported that it is targeting the initial public offering of IPO of Synchrony Financial (SYF), its North American Retail Finance business, for July. In the IPO, Synchrony is offering 125M shares of its common stock, which will be listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “SYF,” and anticipates that the IPO price of the shares will be between $23.00 and $26.00 per share... Another Dow member, IBM (IBM), fell 0.4% after reporting adjusted Q2 earnings per share and revenue that beat expectations. Afterward, Cantor said it thinks the worst is over for the company and reiterated its Buy rating on the shares, though Societe Generale downgraded IBM to Sell from Hold and Credit Suisse said IBM continues to be driven by less revenue growth and kept its Underperform rating and $160 price target on Big Blue's stock. MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was Skyworks (SWKS), which gained 14% after reporting third quarter results and fourth quarter guidance above analyst estimates and seeing no less than five analyst firms raise their price targets on its stock. Also higher was Gentiva Health (GTIV), which rose 14% after it announced that its board unanimously determined to reject the partial tender offer from Kindred Healthcare (KND) to acquire 14.9% of the outstanding shares of Gentiva for a price of $16.00 per share in cash and disclosed that it has received a $17.25 per share, all-cash takeover proposal from a "recognized owner, operator and investor in the sector." After the announcement, shares of Kindred fell 2%. Also lower following their earnings reports were RealPage (RP), which fell over 21%, and Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), which dropped nearly 18%. INDEXES: Near midday, the Dow was up 107.05, or 0.63%, to 17,083.86, the Nasdaq was up 57.98, or 1.33%, to 4,421.43, and the S&P 500 was up 17.04, or 0.87%, to 1,975.16.
09:59 EDTIBMIBM downgraded to Sell from Hold at Societe Generale
07:49 EDTIBMIBM concerns remain, says Credit Suisse
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07:14 EDTBXBlackstone, KKR, TPG discussing deal collusion suit settlement, Reuters says
Blackstone (BX), KKR (KKR) and TPG Capital are in discussions to settle a U.S. case accusing the firms of conspiring not to outbid one another and other buyout companies on takeovers of firms, according to Reuters, citing two people familiar with the matter. If all three companies settled, the Carlyle Group (CG) would be the only private equity company still up against a trial among 11 firms originally accused of colluding in agreements before the financial crisis occurred. Reference Link
06:56 EDTIBMIBM reported solid Q2 results, says Cantor
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