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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
November 9, 2012
12:26 EDTSTRA, ZIP, GRPN, SCLN, PCLN, JCP, LGF, KYAK, DISOn The Fly: Midday Wrap
Stocks on Wall Street were higher at midday as positive economic data in the U.S. and China temporarily distracted investors from worrying over political deadlock getting in the way of progress. The averages opened lower but two economic reports issued near 10 am ET provided a catalyst for a bounce. The averages moved into positive territory ahead of House Speaker John Boehner’s speech on tackling the fiscal cliff crisis and the averages stood near session highs around noon... ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., import prices rose 0.5% in October from the prior month, versus expectations for them to be flat. Export prices in October were unchanged. The preliminary University of Michigan consumer sentiment reading for November came in at 84.9, versus the expected 82.9. Wholesale inventories were reported to have increased 1.1% in September, versus expectations for an increase of 0.4%. Also, the Congressional Budget Office estimated that going over the fiscal cliff would cut U.S. economic output by about 3%, driving the nation back into recession next year. In Europe, French industrial production fell 2.7% in September from August and the Bank of France warned its economy, Europe’s second-largest, may be poised to tip into recession. In China, factory output rose 9.6% in October from a year earlier, beating expectations, and inflation unexpectedly cooled to the slowest pace in 33 months... COMPANY NEWS: Three well known brand names were down after their companies' quarterly reports: Disney (DIS), J.C. Penney (JCP) and Groupon (GRPN). Disney was the Dow Industrial average's worst performer, falling nearly 6%, after its earnings were in-line with consensus but revenues were lighter and Janney Capital downgraded the stock to a Neutral rating. J.C. Penney shares slid about 6% as well after it reported a worse than expected loss and said same store sales dropped 26.1%, making for its third straight quarter of losses and double digit sales declines. Groupon's stock was hardest hit, plunging 27% in midday trading, after it was downgraded by at least four firms and price targets were lowered at several others following the company's disappointing Q3 results and Q4 guidance... MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was Kayak Software (KYAK), which jumped 27% after agreeing to be acquired by Priceline.com (PCLN) in a stock and cash transaction equivalent to $40 per share of Kayak stock. Shares of Priceline advanced fractionally after the deal announcement. Advancers after their earnings reports included Zipcar (ZIP), which jumped over 21%, and Lions Gate Entertainment (LGF), which rose almost 13%. Among the noteworthy losers were SciClone (SCLN), down 24% after cutting its 2012 adjusted earnings view, and Strayer Education (STRA), down 16% after its full-year earnings outlook was well below consensus estimates and the company suspended its dividend... INDICES: Near noon, the Dow was up 65.43, or 0.51%, to 12,876.75; the Nasdaq was up 30.87, or 1.07%, to 2,926.45; and the S&P 500 was up 12.46, or 0.90%, to 1,389.97.
News For DIS;JCP;GRPN;KYAK;PCLN;ZIP;LGF;SCLN;STRA From The Last 14 Days
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February 4, 2016
06:37 EDTSTRAStrayer reports total enrollments for winter term 2016 up to 40,872
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06:36 EDTSTRAStrayer reports Q4 EPS $1.21, consensus $1.18
Reports Q4 revenue $113.7M, consensus $113.6M.
06:28 EDTDISNews Corp not interested in Yahoo acquisition, Business Insider says
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06:14 EDTPCLNTripAdvisor risk/reward now favorable into earnings, says Piper Jaffray
Piper Jaffray analyst Michael Olson says that following the significant underperformance of shares, the risk/reward for TripAdvisor (TRIP) is now favorable into the company's Q4 results. The slowdown in travel is already reflected into consensus estimates and concerns regarding the magnitude of the upcoming 2016 guide-down are overblown, Olson tells investors in a pre-earnings research note on the Online Content space. He reiterates an Overweight rating on the stock with a $120 price target. The analyst recommends avoiding Expedia (EXPE) and Priceline (PCLN) into the Q4 reports.
February 3, 2016
18:53 EDTLGFLionsgate restarts talks to acquire Starz, Bloomberg says
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15:50 EDTLGFLionsgate restarts talks with Starz on possible acquisition, Bloomberg reports
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10:00 EDTSTRAOn The Fly: Analyst Initiation Summary
Today's noteworthy initiations include: Capella Education (CPLA) initiated with an Outperform at Credit Suisse... DeVry (DV) initiated with an Outperform at Credit Suisse... Gilead (GILD) initiated with a Buy at Standpoint Research... Grand Canyon (LOPE) initiated with a Neutral at Credit Suisse... Hannon Armstrong (HASI) initiated with an Equal Weight at Morgan Stanley... Houghton Mifflin (HMHC) initiated with an Outperform at Credit Suisse... Mediaset (MDIUY) initiated with a Buy at Jefferies... Palo Alto (PANW) initiated with a Buy at Maxim... Splunk (SPLK) initiated with a Buy at Maxim... Strayer (STRA) initiated with a Neutral at Credit Suisse... Tableau (DATA) initiated with a Sell at Maxim... Tesla (TSLA) initiated with a Sell at Berenberg... WisdomTree (WETF) initiated with an Outperform at Northland... bluebird bio (BLUE) initiated with an Outperform at Leerink.
06:16 EDTDISHulu eyes Sundance film acquisitions, Bloomberg reports
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February 2, 2016
16:15 EDTSTRAStrayer initiated with a Neutral at Credit Suisse
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15:46 EDTDISEarnings Watch: Media networks report amid shifts in streaming, TV landscape
Comcast (CMCSA), CBS (CBS), Time Warner (TWX), Viacom (VIA), and 21st Century Fox (FOX) are among media companies expected to report quarterly results over the next several weeks. EXPECTATIONS: Comcast is expected to report EPS of 82c on revenue of $18.77B, CBS is expected to report EPS of 93c, Time Warner is expected to report EPS of $1.00 on revenue of $7.53B, Viacom is expected to report EPS of $1.18 on revenue of $3.26B, and Fox is expected to report EPS of 44c on revenue of $7.54B. LAST QUARTER: Comcast, Fox, and viacom reported mixed results for the previous quarter, while CBS and Time Warner beat on both top and bottom lines. NEWS: On November 10, Comcast announced it expanded its advanced fiber network to Modesto, California as part of the company's ongoing response to Google (GOOG) Fiber. On November 12, the Wall Street Journal broke news that Hulu, a video streaming joint venture of Disney (DIS), Comcast and Fox, is in talks to sell a stake to Time Warner, though the Journal said on January 31 that the company has expressed dissatisfaction with Hulu's inclusion of current-season TV episodes, which it believes contributes to cord-cutting. On December 2, the Wall Street Journal reported that YouTube was holding talks with Hollywood studios and production companies to seek content licenses amid intensified competition with Netflix (NFLX), Amazon (AMZN), and Hulu. On December 9, Re/code reported that Apple (AAPL), rumored to be working on a subscription TV service, walked away from its negotiations with the major networks after being pressed to include "filler" channels in its hypothetical service. Speaking at a January 7 media conference, Time Warner CFO Howard Averill said the company was negotiating to make full seasons of TV shows available to pay-TV customers on demand, mirroring the "binge watching" offered by Netflix. On January 8, the New York Post reported that Corvex Management was considering an activist position in Time Warner. That same day, Benzinga reported that Twenty-First Century Fox remained interested in the company and had made a $105 per share acquisition offer, though Fox later denied the report. On January 14, the New York Post reported that Comcast has begun "ripping up" agreements with cable networks, moving them from basic cable onto digital tiers in response to consumer demand for smaller bundles. On January 27, Reuters reported that SpringOwl Asset Management is urging Viacom to seek outside investment from strategic partners. On January 30, the New York Post reported that Nelson Peltz is considering an activist position in Time Warner. On February 1, the National Football League announced a broadcasting agreement with CBS and Comcast's NBC which will see the two companies paying roughly $225M each for rights to the next two seasons of Thursday Night Football. Also on February 1, it was reported that Fox offered certain employees voluntary buyouts as part of a $250M cost cutting target. STREET RESEARCH: On November 5, Wells Fargo analyst Marci Ryvicker downgraded Time Warner to Market Perform after its "huge" guidance cut last quarter, with the shares also seeing downgrades at CLSA and Bank of America Merrill Lynch. On December 22, Morgan Stanley analyst Benjamin Swinburne called Comcast one of his top large cap picks for 2016, saying the company can use skinny bundles to take market share and potentially add net video customers for the first time since 2006. On January 8, research firm Stifel cut its price target on CBS to $54 from $66, citing a belief that industry syndication and SVOD revenues will significantly decelerate going forward, with CBS having more exposure to those areas than its peers. Meanwhile, JPMorgan added the company to its U.S. focus list on January 11, citing its heavily discounted stock and potentially strong EPS growth in 2016. On February 1, Pacific Crest argued that Comcast shares should be owned going into fourth quarter results, contending that the company's video and broadband investments will likely translate to increased market share and strong cash flows this year. PRICE ACTION: Comcast and Fox, the first of the media giants to report quarterly earnings, are down 2% and 3.6%, respectively, amid the broader market selloff.
10:40 EDTGRPNStifel warns Twitter may go way of tech busts, cuts to Sell
Twitter (TWTR) is giving up nearly all of yesterday's gains after Fortune and The Wall Street Journal poured cold water on a report that private equity firm Silver Lake might be considering making a strategic investment in the company. Additionally weighing on the stock are a Business Insider report claiming that the number of tweets has declined by more than 50% in the last 18 months and research firm Stifel downgrading the stock to Sell. WHAT'S NEW: Yesterday morning, tech website The Information reported that venture capitalist Marc Andreessen and private equity firm Silver Lake have considered making a deal involving Twitter. However, Silver Lake isn't looking to make a deal with Twitter, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing an unnamed source. The Journal's article echoes a report yesterday afternoon by Fortune, which also quoted an unnamed source as saying that Silver Lake isn't interested in buying Twitter. Also, according to Business Insider, the number of daily tweets on Twitter has plummeted by more than 50% since August 2014. The report based its estimate on a sampling of data from the website's application programming interface. Last month, there were 303M tweets per day on average, down from the peak of an average of 661M per day in August 2014, when the World Cup was occurring, the website stated. Moreover, according to the data, Twitter has about 130M active users, versus the company's estimate of up to 320M monthly active users. STIFEL SAY SELL: Stifel analyst Scott Devitt downgraded Twitter to Sell form Hold, saying that it has "never fully developed into a sustainable public company." Yahoo (YHOO) says that it has 1B monthly active users, but the market valuation of Yahoo's core business is "much lower" than that of Twitter, which has a significantly smaller user base, Devitt stated. Additionally, Internet companies Groupon (GRPN) and Zynga (ZNGA) became well-known and obtained tens of millions of users, only to see their stocks plummet, the analyst stated. Meanwhile, Twitter's product has not changed significantly since the company hired a new CEO three months ago and it will have difficulty meeting financial expectations over the short-term and longer term, given the size of its user base, said Devitt, who has a $14 price target for the shares. PRICE ACTION: In morning trading, Twitter fell 6.3% to $16.78. The stock had gained 6.55% yesterday on the heels of Jessica Lessin's report in The Information.
08:06 EDTLGFLionsgate risk/reward attractive, says Bernstein
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06:55 EDTJCPPiper reiterates J.C. Penney as top pick for 2016
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February 1, 2016
07:13 EDTDISDisney price target lowered to $92 from $112 at Jefferies
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January 31, 2016
20:11 EDTDISTime Warner, Hulu talks heat up over issue of current seasons, WSJ says
Time Warner's (TWX) negotiations to potentially buy into Hulu, a joint venture of Comcast (CMCSA, CMCSK), Fox (FOX, FOXA) and Disney (DIS), have been heating up lately over the issue of Hulu subscribers being able to view current-season TV shows, reports the Wall Street Journal, citing sources. Though the feature is a differentiator for Hulu when compared to Netflix (NFLX) and Amazon (AMZN), Time Warner believes the presence of full, current seasons contributes to cord cutting, the report says. Reference Link
18:07 EDTDIS'Kung Fu Panda 3' swings to first, 'Finest Hours' lands in choppy waters
"Kung Fu Panda 3" topped the box office in its U.S. debut while nautical disaster drama "The Finest Hours" floundered. WEEKEND LEADER: "Kung Fu Panda 3," produced by DreamWorks (DWA) and distributed by Fox (FOX, FOXA), grossed $41M against expectations for $35M-$50M in its domestic debut during the weekend of January 31. The computer-animated action comedy, featuring the voices of Jack Black, Dustin Hoffman and Angelina Jolie, set a new box office record for January animated film openings but fell somewhat short of the $60.2M and $47.7M debuts seen by previous films in the franchise. BOX OFFICE RUNNERS-UP: "The Revenant," also from Fox, grossed $12.4M. Disney's (DIS) "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" took in an additional $10.8M and stands at $1.98B globally, while the company's "The Finest Hours" earned $10.3M in its domestic start despite an estimated $70M-$80M budget. Rounding out the top five was Universal's (CMCSA, CMCSK) "Ride Along 2" with $8.3M.
January 29, 2016
12:53 EDTDIS, LGFBox Office Battle: 'Kung Fu Panda 3' expected to kick 'Revenant' from top spot
DreamWorks Animation's (DWA) "Kung Fu Panda 3" featuring Jack Black is expected to break the record for the largest January opening for an animated feature, topping the opening of "The Nut Job" in 2014. The first two films in the "Kung Fu Panda" franchise took in $60.2M and $47.6M, respectively, in their opening weekends and grossed a total of nearly $1.3B worldwide. With a strong base of Po the Panda fans and the popularity of a recent TV show, conservative early estimates say "Panda 3" is expected to bring in $35M-$50M. Also opening this weekend are Disney's (DIS) "The Finest Hours," starring Chris Pine, and Open Road Films' "Fifty Shades of Black," starring Marlon Wayans. "The Finest Hours" may disappoint, with expectations topping out at $10M in its opening weekend. "Fifty Shades of Black," meanwhile, is the latest spoof movie from the team of Wayans and Michael Tiddes from "Haunted House" fame. The last film from Wayans had an opening weekend of $8.8M, and this one is currently expected to take in a similar amount. Both films will battle with Fox's (FOX, FOXA) survival story and Oscar contender "The Revenant," starring Leonardo Dicaprio, and Disney's (DIS) "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" for spots in the top five. "The Revenant" and "Star Wars" should each take in $9M-$12M even as they continue to lose theaters this coming weekend. Other publicly traded companies involved in filmmaking include Lionsgate (LGF), Comcast (CMCSA, CMCSK), and Sony (SNE).
10:05 EDTJCPOn The Fly: Analyst Upgrade Summary
Today's noteworthy upgrades include: Atlassian (TEAM) upgraded on positive outlook at JMP Securities... BRF S.A. (BRFS) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Deutsche Bank... Bank of America (BAC) upgraded to Outperform from Sell at CLSA... CEMEX (CX) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Jefferies... Chemical Financial (CHFC) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Fig Partners... Computer Programs (CPSI) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Topeka... DST Systems (DST) upgraded to Outperform at Baird... Diamond Offshore (DO) upgraded to Neutral from Sell at Citi... First Cash Financial (FCFS) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Janney Capital... First Merchants (FRME) upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at Stephens... Flex (FLEX) upgraded on solid results at Stifel... Intercept (ICPT) upgraded to Equal Weight from Underweight at Morgan Stanley... J.C. Penney (JCP) upgraded to Neutral from Underperform at Credit Suisse... JetBlue (JBLU) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Evercore ISI... Juniper (JNPR) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Bernstein... Live Oak Bancshares (LOB) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at SunTrust... Microsemi (MSCC) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Wells Fargo... NetSuite (N) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Canaccord... NextEra Energy (NEE) upgraded to Outperform at Baird... Oshkosh (OSK) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at SunTrust... PC Connection (PCCC) upgraded to Market Perform from Underperform at Raymond James... Pinnacle Financial (PNFP) upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at Stephens... Potash (POT) upgraded to Outperform from Sector Perform at Scotiabank... Rayonier (RYN) upgraded on valuation at BMO Capital... SanDisk (SNDK) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Needham... Select Comfort (SCSS) upgraded to Outperform from Neutral at Wedbush... Sotherly Hotels (SOHO) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Janney Capital... Textura (TXTR) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Northland... Valley National (VLY) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Sandler O'Neill.
09:21 EDTJCPOn The Fly: Pre-market Movers
UP AFTER EARNINGS: Gigamon (GIMO), up 17.7%... Fortinet (FTNT), up 10%... Flextronics (FLEX), up 10%... Skyworks (SWKS), up 5.7%... Seagate Technology (STX), up 4.9%.. Microsoft (MSFT), up 4.6%. ALSO HIGHER: Inovio Pharmaceuticals (INO), up 8.1% after CEO says Zika vaccine could enter human testing this year... J.C. Penney (JCP), up 2.1% after being upgraded to Neutral from Underperform at Credit Suisse... BRF S.A. (BRFS), up 3.1% after being upgraded to Buy from Hold at Deutsche Bank... Axiall (AXLL), up 83.4% after rejecting $20 per share acquisition proposal from Westlake Chemical (WLK)... Energous (WATT), up 12% after Bloomberg reported that Apple (AAPL) is working with partners in the U.S. and Asia to develop new wireless charging technology. DOWN AFTER EARNINGS: Amazon.com (AMZN), down 10.1%... Electronic Arts (EA), down 6.2%... AbbVie (ABBV), down 4%... American Airlines (AAL), down 1.3%. ALSO LOWER: Gilead Sciences (GILD), down 5.5% after CEO John Martin to assume role of executive chairman and COO John Milligan will be promoted to CEO.
06:40 EDTJCPJ.C. Penney upgraded to Neutral from Underperform at Credit Suisse
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