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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
May 23, 2014
11:04 EDTSNE, MSFT, WMT, GMEGameStop advances after profits beat expectations, outlook backed
Shares of multichannel video game retailer GameStop (GME) are rising this morning after the company reported better than expected first quarter profits and backed its fiscal 2014 guidance. WHAT'S NEW: GameStop reported Q1 earnings per share of 59c, which beat analysts' consensus estimate of 57c, and revenue of $2B, which was relatively in-line with an estimate of $2.03B. Consolidated comparable sales for the quarter increased 5.8%. For the quarter, the new hardware category grew 81.1% from the year-ago period, driven by strong worldwide consumer demand for Sony's (SNE) PlayStation 4 and Microsoft's (MSFT) Xbox One. The company said total market sales in the U.S. from launch through April of XBox One and PS4 hardware more than doubled the combined sales of Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 hardware through their first six months of sales. Looking ahead, the company backed its fiscal year 2014 EPS view of $3.40-$3.70. The consensus forecast of analysts for FY14 EPS prior to the report was $3.68. Full year SSS are expected to be up 6%-12%. The company also forecast second quarter EPS of 12c-20c with SSS up 12%-19%. The consensus forecast for Q2 EPS prior to the report was 17c. WHAT'S NOTABLE: On its earnings conference call, GameStop CEO Paul Raines said the company is seeing "stronger" demand for the Xbox One as a result of the console's recent price drop last week, adding that the good news for the company is "we'll sell a lot more units." Also during the call, an analyst asked if GameStop's business has been impacted from Wal-Mart (WMT) recently entering the used game space. Raines said the company has not seen any impact from competitors entering the used game space and commented that "I would encourage you to go do some trades at all of our competitors, because I think all of them are in the trade business. We have a deep knowledge of how execution looks at all of those competitors and we do not have any impact from them." PRICE ACTION: GameStop is trading up $1.85, or about 5%, to $38.74 in mid-morning trading.
News For GME;MSFT;SNE;WMT From The Last 14 Days
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April 17, 2015
05:53 EDTSNEWikiLeaks publishes previously hacked Sony emails, Financial Times reports
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April 16, 2015
11:54 EDTMSFTYahoo gets more flexibility with new Microsoft agreement, says Cantor
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09:01 EDTMSFTMicrosoft, Yahoo agree to amend search partnership
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09:00 EDTMSFTMicrosoft, Yahoo agree to amend search partnership
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07:21 EDTGMEGameStop estimates raised on stronger industry software sales at SunTrust
SunTrust says that video game software sales have finally turned positive, and the firm expects industry software sales to increase 3%-5% this year, given the momentum of the new hardware cycle and a better title lineup versus last year. SunTrust keeps a Buy rating on GameStop.
06:08 EDTMSFTMicrosoft counceled EC in Google antitrust probe, NY Post says
Microsoft (MSFT) "complained a lot" and "definitely counseled" the European Commission in its antitrust investigation of Google (GOOG), reports the New York Post, citing a source with direct knowledge of the situation. Reference Link
06:05 EDTWMTFormer Wal-Mart CEO Duke heads to Carlyle Group, WSJ reports
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April 15, 2015
06:17 EDTMSFTCiti cuts Microsoft estimates, price target ahead of Q3 results
Ahead of the tech giant's Q3 results on April 23 and analyst day on April 29, Citigroup cut its below consensus estimates for Microsoft to reflect currency headwinds, lower PC units and reductions in commercial licensing. Citi's FY15, FY16 and FY17 earnings estimates now stand at $2.59, $2.71 and $2.90. The firm believes further contraction to Microsoft’s valuation multiple is possible given downside risk to consensus numbers and "medium-term uncertainty on multiple fronts." It believes the tech giant's strategic issues, including Windows challenges and the cloud transition, have no easy answers. Citi cut its price target for Microsoft shares to $36 from $38 and keeps a Sell rating on the name.
April 14, 2015
18:32 EDTWMTCourt rules Wal-Mart can reject shareholder proposal on gun sales, WSJ says
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13:20 EDTSNERecord labels lobby for better royalties from YouTube, Dailymotion, FT says
The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry alleged Tuesday that certain digital video platforms including Google's (GOOG) YouTube and Orange's (ORAN) Dailymotion are relying too much on "safe harbour" laws to avoid paying royalties to record labels, reports the Financial Times, citing statements by IFPI CEO Frances Moore. The move comes as the European Commission weighs reforming EU copyright law. The IFPI is a recording industry group that counts Sony (SNE) Music Entertainment and Vivendi's (VIVHY) Universal Music Group among its members. Reference Link
11:04 EDTMSFTMicrosoft acquires Datazen Software, terms not disclosed
Microsoft announced in a blog post the acquisition of Datazen Software, "an industry leader in mobile business intelligence and data visualization on Windows, iOS and Android devices. This acquisition accelerates our Power BI strategy to help organizations create a data culture with easy-to-use, accessible tools to extract maximum value from data – from anywhere, on any device... Beyond great technology, this acquisition brings a group of talented people to Microsoft. They will help us continue to deliver a broad range of products and services that will empower organizations around the world capitalize on their data opportunities." Reference Link
05:54 EDTSNESony creates unit built for local language production, Financial Times says
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05:46 EDTMSFTMicrosoft's Surface 3 expected to see weak sales, DigiTimes Research reports
Microsoft's Surface 3 is expected to see low shipments and weak sales due to fiercer competition than those for its Surface Pro 3, reports DigiTimes Research. The Surface 3, priced over $600, is expected to only have limited impact on other branded 2-in-1 products, which are priced below $350 on average. Reference Link
05:46 EDTMSFTMicrosoft offers fee cut to attract vendors to pre-install apps, DigiTimes says
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April 13, 2015
15:16 EDTGMEGameStop management to meet with Piper Jaffray
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12:02 EDTMSFTMicrosoft hires Kurt DelBene to head corporate strategy and planning
Microsoft announced that Kurt DelBene has been named executive vice president of Corporate Strategy and Planning reporting to Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. DelBene is returning to Microsoft, where he was most recently president of the Microsoft Office Division. After leaving Microsoft in 2013, he then served as senior advisor to the Secretary of Health and Human Services where he was appointed by President Obama to oversee implementation and improvement of Healthcare.gov. He most recently has been a venture partner at Madrona Venture Group, concentrating on investing and advising in early stage, technology-focused startups in the Pacific Northwest.
08:42 EDTSNEPandora rises after Spotify reportedly valued above $8B in fundraising
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April 12, 2015
19:01 EDTMSFTNokia maps unit HERE may be of interest to several tech firms, Re/code says
If Nokia is putting its mapping unit HERE up for sale it may draw interest from firms like Microsoft (MSFT), Yahoo (YHOO), Amazon (AMZN) and Apple (AAPL), says Re/code. Reference Link
18:11 EDTSNEEx-hacker says many capable of launching Sony-style cyber attack, CNET says
Ninety percent of companies are vulnerable to a Sony (SNE)-like cyber attack security experts tell "60 Minutes," CNET says. Companies in the cyber security space include Barracuda (CUDA), FireEye (FEYE), Check Point (CHKP), Fortinet (FTNT), Imperva (IMPV), Palo Alto (PANW), Qualys (QLYS), Symantec (SYMC) and Proofpoint (PFPT). Reference Link
15:43 EDTWMTWal-Mart's Walton family puts shares in newly formed trust, Reuters says
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