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April 17, 2014
12:53 EDTMU, PM, DD, AXP, GOOG, WLP, ADS, MS, GS, SNDK, AET, BHI, UNH, GE, IBMOn The Fly: Midday Wrap
Stocks on Wall Street were mixed but near the flat-line at midday as investors sifted through a barrage of earnings reports from some of the world's biggest companies. Stock futures were pointing to a lower open in the early hours of the morning following last night's misses by two of the biggest names in tech. However, the futures moved off their lows as some other corporate giants reported better than expected earnings and weekly jobless claims also positively surprised, though the broader market opened slightly lower. The averages have managed to pare their losses throughout the morning and turn mixed. The market is on track to have it best weekly performance since last year if it can hold near current levels into the close. ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., initial jobless claims edged up 2K to 304K in the week ended April 12, though that was below the consensus 315K forecast of economists. The Philly Fed manufacturing index climbed to 16.6, beating expectations for a more modest uptick to 10.0. COMPANY NEWS: Two of the biggest names in technology, Google (GOOG) and IBM (IBM), both reported revenue that missed expectations last night, which weighed on both of their stocks. Google, which also missed expectations for earnings per share, slid over 4% near noon, while shares of IBM were down over 3%... In addition to IBM, five other Dow components reported on their just ended quarters: General Electric (GE), which rose over 2%, UnitedHealth (UNH), which declined more than 3.5%, American Express (AXP), which slid about 2%, DuPont (DD), which fell 1%, and Goldman Sachs (GS), whose shares were little changed near midday... Among the many other companies that reported after last night's closing bell and this morning's open, Baker Hughes (BHI) and Morgan Stanley (MS) advanced, while Phillip Morris International (PM) and Alliance Data Systems (ADS) declined. MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was SanDisk (SNDK), which advanced 10% after the company's quarterly results topped analysts' consensus estimates and the company raised its adjusted gross margin outlook. SanDisk peer Micron (MU), which issued its own quarterly report two weeks ago today, also rose 5%. Among the noteworthy losers were a number of health insurers following the quarterly report from UnitedHealth, which is the largest company in the sector. Shares of peer WellPoint (WLP) slid almost 4%, while Aetna (AET) fell 3%. INDEXES: Near midday, the Dow was down 7.07, or 0.04%, to 16,417.78, the Nasdaq was up 8.54, or 0.21%, to 4,094.76, and the S&P 500 was up 2.20, or 0.12%, to 1,864.51.
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November 12, 2015
13:24 EDTGOOGEarnings Watch: Cisco seeks to break out of trading rut with Q1 report
Cisco Systems (CSCO) is scheduled to report results of its fiscal first quarter after the market close on Thursday, November 12 with a conference call scheduled for 4:30 pm ET. Cisco, a member of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, sells Internet protocol-based networking and other products related to the communications and IT industry and provides related services. EXPECTATIONS: Analysts are looking for earnings per share of 56c on revenue of $12.65B, according to First Call. The consensus range for EPS is 55c-59c on revenue of $12.55B-$12.81B. Along with its quarterly report, Cisco guided to Q1 EPS of 55c-57c and said it expects its revenue to increase 2%-4% year over year. LAST QUARTER: On August 12, Cisco reported fourth quarter EPS of 59c on revenue of $12.8B, beating consensus estimates of 56c and $12.65B for EPS and revenue, respectively. NEWS: On its Q4 earnings conference call, Cisco said that it was looking at acquisitions at the right price, particularly in areas like software and security. On August 31, Apple (AAPL) and Cisco announced a partnership to build a "fast lane" for iOS business users by optimizing Cisco networks for iOS devices and apps, integrating iPhone with Cisco enterprise environments and providing unique collaboration on iPhone and iPad. The next day, Cisco was among multiple other companies, including Amazon (AMZN), Google (GOOG), Intel (INTC), Microsoft (MSFT), Mozilla, and Netflix (NFLX), announcing the formation of the Alliance for Open Media to build next-generation media formats, codecs, and technologies in the public interest. On September 3, Business Insider reported that people at Cisco still though that chairman John Chambers was running the show as chief executive officer after appointing Chuck Robbins to that role last May. On September 15, Mandiant, a FireEye (FEYE) subsidiary, said in a blog post that researchers discovered previously unknown attacks on certain routers and that such attacks replace the operating system used in Cisco equipment. About a week later, the Wall Street Journal reported that Cisco was aiming to strengthen its business in China by joining forces with Inspur group, a move which was confirmed on September 24. On October 29, Cisco announced its intention to acquire 1 Mainstream. CNBC later reported that the company paid $100M-$150M to acquire 1 Mainstream. On November 9, Ericsson (ERIC) and Cisco announced a global business and technology partnership to "create the networks of the future." The companies said that the strategic partnership will be a key driver of growth and value for the next decade, with each company benefiting from incremental revenue in calendar year 2016 and expected to ramp to $1B or more for each by 2018. STREET RESEARCH: On August 17, Morgan Stanley downgraded Cisco to Equal Weight from Overweight and maintained a $30 price target on the stock, saying it did not believe improved growth is "secular" and anticipates growth will revert to GDP like levels as the upgrade cycle concludes. Wells Fargo said on August 28 that a 10% selloff in communication tech stocks, including Cisco, had created an attractive buying opportunity. Bernstein said a week later that Cisco, Juniper (JNPR), and F5 Networks (FFIV) should be bought on wider macro economic weakness. On October 6, Citi initiated coverage of Cisco with a Buy rating and $30 price target. A week later, Barclays initiated coverage of Cisco with an Overweight rating and a $32 price target. On November 9, RBC Capital maintained an Outperform rating and $33 price target on Cisco, saying it expects the company to report slightly better than expected results. The next day, SunTrust maintained a Buy rating on Cisco, saying its partnership with Ericsson was a positive and should strengthen Cisco's service provider business. PRICE ACTION: In afternoon trading ahead of tonight's report, Cisco shares were up 0.5% to $27.97. In the last three months, Cisco shares are fractionally higher and virtually unchanged when discounting this afternoon's slight rise.
12:38 EDTGOOGYouTube launches Music app
YouTube has launched the YouTube Music app for iOS and Android. In a blog post, the company commented, YouTube is offering a free 14-day trial of premium mode. "No matter where you start in the app, the music will never stop. Every song you play or artist you choose will take you on an endless journey through YouTube's music catalog. A simple tap and you're on your way, enjoying your favorite music and discovering new artists effortlessly. The home tab will recommend tracks just for you and create personalized stations based on your tastes." Reference Link
09:19 EDTAXP, GOOGPayPal sinks with Apple eyeing peer-to-peer payments
Shares of PayPal (PYPL) are weak again this morning following a report yesterday afternoon alleging that Apple (AAPL) is set to launch a competitor to one of the payment technology company's offerings. Analysts that were already split about PayPal's prospects are also divided on the potential impact of Apple's entry, with a bull at Citi downplaying the risk and a bear at Piper Jaffray voicing greater concern. APPLE COMPETITION: Apple is in talks with U.S. banks to create a mobile person-to-person payment service, reported The Wall Street Journal yesterday afternoon, citing people familiar with the matter. Apple's service, which would likely be linked to the company's Apple Pay system and could get off the ground next year, would compete with PayPal's Venmo peer-to-peer, or P2P, payment platform, the Journal said. BULLISH TAKE: Citi analyst Ashwin Shirvaikar says his Buy thesis on PayPal is unchanged after the Journal's report regarding Apple's efforts. Apple is a "viable competitor in a crowded field," but its product is unlikely to change the near-term growth trajectory of PayPal's Venmo, Shirvaikar told investors in a research note. He keeps a Buy rating on PayPal with a $44 price target. BEARISH TAKE: Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster believes Apple's reported plans for a P2P payment offering sometime in 2016 will have limited to no impact on his model for the iPhone maker, but cautions that more mobile wallets offering P2P will add to the challenges facing PayPal's Venmo. The analyst believes the "real estate for all logos at the point-of-sale will be scarce and cluttered," noting that in addition to new entrants like Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Google's (GOOG) Android Pay, JPMorgan's (JPM) Chase Pay, MCX/CurrentC and PayPal there are still legacy players such as Visa (V) Checkout, MasterCard (MA) Masterpass, and American Express' (AXP) Express Checkout. Munster thinks Venmo is a strong offering that will keep gaining share, but in addition to competition, he sees low interest rates hindering float income and thinks the value proposition for consumers and merchants remains "uncertain." The analyst keeps an Underweight on PayPal, which is the firm's equivalent of a "sell" rating, with a $30 target for its shares. PRICE ACTION: Shares of PayPal slipped 1.8% to close at $36.33 yesterday following the Journal's report. In pre-market trading, the stock fell another 1% to $36 per share.
07:36 EDTGSGoldman Sachs management to meet with Deutsche Bank
Meeting to be held in Montclair, NJ on November 12 hosted by Deutsche Bank.
06:25 EDTGEGE may shut down Hudson River cleanup, WSJ says
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06:12 EDTGS, MSMorgan Stanley to offer wealth management clients savings accounts, Reuters says
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05:40 EDTIBMIBM, HCL Technologies announce strategic partnership
IBM and HCL Technologies announced a strategic partnership to jointly build hybrid cloud solutions to help enterprises drive their digital transformations. HCL will use Bluemix, IBM's Cloud platform to build applications and solutions in the areas of Unified Service Management and Internet of Things. HCL will also use IBM Cloud's Infrastructure as a Service, SoftLayer, to offer cloud-based solutions to its clients.
November 11, 2015
18:45 EDTGOOGGoogle may face competitive hurdles in China, WSJ says
Google (GOOG) could face intense competition in China even as it looks to secure government approval to launch its Google Play mobile app store in the country, reports the Wall Street Journal. After pulling its services from China roughly five years ago over censorship issues, local rivals Baidu (BIDU), Xiaomi, and others have gained significant footholds. Sources in the Chinese internet industry told the Journal it "shouldn't be too difficult" for Google to obtain regulatory approval for Play, and the app store may in fact be Google's best chance of penetrating the region, given the high fragmentation and security issues of local offerings. Reference Link
16:00 EDTGEOptions Update; November 11, 2015
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14:34 EDTAETAMA voices 'significant concerns' with insurers' proposed mergers
The American Medical Association, in a letter to the Assistant Attorney General of the Department of Justice's Antitrust Division, stated that its analyses of the proposed health insurance mergers, namely Aetna's (AET) proposed acquisition of Humana (HUM) and Anthem's (ANTM) proposed acquisition of Cigna (CI), "reveal significant concerns with respect to the impact on consumers in terms of health care access, quality, and affordability." Accordingly, the AMA urges the Department of Justice to block the proposed mergers, the group stated.
14:31 EDTGOOGAlphabet Inc volatility near historic low as shares trend to record high
Alphabet Inc (GOOG) November weekly call option implied volatility is at 18, November and December is at 19; compared to its 52-week range of 17 to 42, suggesting decreasing price risk as shares trend to record high.
14:25 EDTAETAMA urges DOJ to block Humana, Aetna deal, Bloomberg says
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12:56 EDTGEOptions with increasing call volume
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10:32 EDTBHIOptions with increasing implied volatility
Options with increasing implied volatility: STRP MW FTK RPTP MNK CVC GMCR ATML NUS BHI
10:05 EDTGEGeneral Electric advances, levels to watch
The stock was last at $30.44, up over 1% on the day and outperforming the averages. At that price next resistance is at $31. Support is at $30.22, the opening price of the day.
09:59 EDTSNDKOn The Fly: Analyst Downgrade Summary
Today's noteworthy downgrades include: Amedisys (AMED) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Mizuho... Apple Hospitality REIT (APLE) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Ladenburg... BioCryst (BCRX) downgraded to Underperform from Neutral at BofA/Merrill... Boot Barn (BOOT) downgraded to Hold from Buy at BB&T... C1 Financial (BNK) downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at Raymond James... Clarcor (CLC) downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at Avondale... EMC (EMC) downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at Wells Fargo... Eaton (ETN) downgraded on near-term challenges at Argus... Keurig Green Mountain (GMCR) downgraded to Negative from Mixed at OTR Global... Lennox (LII) downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at JPMorgan... Mediaset (MDIUY) downgraded to Hold from Buy at HSBC... MetLife (MET) downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight at Morgan Stanley... Metaldyne Performance (MPG) downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight at Barclays... Oracle (ORCL) downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight at Morgan Stanley... Penn Virginia (PVA) downgraded to Hold from Buy at Canaccord... Rex Energy (REXX) downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at Northland... Rice Energy (RICE) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Goldman... Rockwell Automation (ROK) downgraded to Underperform from Outperform at CLSA... Sabra Health Care (SBRA) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at SunTrust... SanDisk (SNDK) downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at Bernstein... Vestas Wind (VWDRY) downgraded to Hold from Buy at HSBC.
08:25 EDTGOOGFederal claims dismissal in Google browser tracking suit upheld, Reuters reports
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06:22 EDTGEGeneral Electric calls active, shares close above $30
General Electric 11/20/15 38, 11/20/15 35, 11/20/15 30.50 and 11/13/15 30 calls were active as shares closed above $30 for the first time since 2008. Active call volume suggests traders taking positions for large price movement.
06:19 EDTGOOG, GSAppNexus talks to Goldman, other banks about IPO plans, Business Insider reports
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06:16 EDTSNDKSanDisk downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at Bernstein
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