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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
July 22, 2014
16:36 EDTUTX, KO, HOG, HLF, DD, MCD, CROX, TRV, VZ, NFLX, CMGOn The Fly: Closing Wrap
Stocks on Wall Street were higher in spite of post-earnings drops from a number of Dow components and a halt of U.S. flights to Israel's capital. Stocks began the session in positive territory and remained there throughout the entire session, moving in a fairly narrow range against the backdrop of a pick-up in the number of companies reporting on their quarterly results. The market withstood the latest headlines from Israel's conflict in Gaza, which indicated that the FAA has suspended U.S. flights to Tel Aviv for 24 hours following a rocket launch that landed near the city's airport. With the Dow again near record levels, investors are preparing for tonight's earnings blast, which includes reports from both Apple (AAPL) and Microsoft (MSFT). ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., the Consumer Price Index rose 0.3% in June, matching expectations. The FHFA home price index rose 0.4% to 212.4 in May. Existing home sales rose 2.6% to a rate of 5.04M in June, beating expectations for a 2.2% monthly increase to a 5.0M rate. The Richmond Fed's manufacturing index rose 3 points to 7 in July, missing the consensus forecast by 1 point. COMPANY NEWS: Shares of Herbalife (HLF) began the day in negative territory as hedge fund manager Bill Ackman, who has repeatedly called the company a pyramid scheme, prepared to begin the presentation that he told CNBC yesterday would show why the company "is going to collapse." Among the allegations made today, Ackman estimated that Herbalife's nutrition clubs lose an average of $12K for their operators, that the clubs contribute "enormously" to Herbalife's results and that Herbalife insiders are selling while the company is repurchasing shares. After the multiple hour long presentation, Herbalife said Ackman "over-promised and under-delivered" on his $1B bet against the company. The multi-level marketing company added that Ackman’s claim about the earnings of its nutrition clubs is "completely false and fabricated" and the stock closed the day up $13.75, or 25.45%, at $67.77... Six members of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, or one fifth of the index, reported on their earnings this morning. Among them, Verizon (VZ) advanced 28c, or 0.55%, to $50.98, while Coca-Cola (KO) slid 2.85%, McDonald’s (MCD) fell 1.31%, DuPont (DD) dropped 0.9%, United Technologies (UTX) dropped 1.88% and Travelers (TRV) declined 3.81%. MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG), which rallied $69.84, or 11.84%, to $659.77 after the restaurant operator's second quarter results handily beat analysts' consensus estimates and it raised its fiscal 2014 comparable restaurant sales outlook. Also higher was Crocs (CROX) which rose $1.84, or 12.4%, to $16.68 after the footwear maker reported second quarter earnings per share and revenue that exceeded analysts' consensus and detailed its plans for cost-saving measures and store closures. Among the noteworthy losers was Harley Davidson (HOG), which fell $3.62, or 5.4%, to $63.46 after its second quarter earnings beat expectations but the company lowered its forecast for its fiscal year motorcycle shipments. Also lower were shares of Netflix (NFLX), which fell $20.86, or 4.62%, to $431.09 after several research firms reiterated their negative outlook on the stock following the company's second quarter results. INDEXES: The Dow was up 61.81, or 0.36%, to 17,113.54, the Nasdaq was up 31.31, or 0.71%, to 4,456.02, and the S&P 500 was up 9.90, or 0.50%, to 1,983.53.
News For HLF;CMG;CROX;HOG;NFLX;MCD;KO;VZ;DD;UTX;TRV From The Last 14 Days
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January 25, 2016
08:10 EDTMCDMcDonald's expects positive top line momentum across all segments in 2016
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08:09 EDTMCDMcDonald's reports foreign currency translation had negative impact of 11c in Q4
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08:04 EDTMCDMcDonald's returned $2.3B to shareholders in Q4
The company returned $2.3 billion to shareholders through share repurchases and dividends in the fourth quarter and $9.4 billion for the full year. This brings the cumulative return to shareholders to $15.8 billion against our targeted return of about $30 billion for the three-year period ending 2016.
08:02 EDTMCDMcDonald's reports Q4 global comparable sales up 5%
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08:01 EDTMCDMcDonald's reports Q4 EPS ex gain $1.28, consensus $1.23
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06:52 EDTUTXOther bidders could emerge for Tyco, says JPMorgan
After the Wall Street Journal reported that Johnson Controls (JCI) is in advanced talks to acquire with Tyco (TYC), JPMorgan analyst Stephen Tusa says other bidders could emerge. United Technologies (UTX) may have interest in Tyco and could likely extract more value than Johnson from the lower tax rate, Tusa tells investors in a research note. The analyst has an Overweight rating on Tyco with a $42 price target. The stock closed Friday up 61c to $30.60.
06:34 EDTMCDMcDonald's to open over 60 locations in Russia in 2016, Reuters reports
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January 24, 2016
18:56 EDTVZVerizon pursuing sponsored content for go90, Reuters says
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13:04 EDTCMGChipotle remains overvalued, could drop 20%, Barron's says
Despite their recent declines, Chipotle shares remain pricey and could drop another 20% on any future health scares, Barron's contends in its 'Follow Up' column, noting that more bad news "seems likely" for the restaurant group. Reference Link
11:02 EDTNFLX, TRV, VZStocks post weekly gain after oil rebounds
Stocks recovered late in the week to post their first weekly gain of the new year as equities continue to be correlated closely with the oil market. A plunge in oil led equities lower early in the holiday shortened week, but as oil prices rebounded to close the week out, the major averages followed suit. MACRO NEWS: In the U.S., the consumer price index fell 0.1% during December, versus expectations for a flat reading. The core reading, which excludes food and energy, showed prices rose 0.1% from the prior month, versus expectations for an increase of 0.2%. Initial jobless claims rose to 293,000 last week, topping the expectation for 278,000 first-time claims. Markit's flash manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index for January rose 1.5 points to 52.7, better than the 51.0 reading that was expected. Existing home sales climbed 14.7% to a 5.46M rate in December, topping the 5.2M rate that was forecast... In Asia, China's national bureau of statistics estimated that GDP growth slowed to 6.8% in the last quarter of the year, dipping from 6.9% growth in the previous quarter. China's industrial output rose 5.9% from a year earlier in December, compared with the consensus forecast for a 6% increase. Japan's Nikkei average was down early in the week, even falling into bear market territory, but rallied nearly 6% on Friday after the Nikkei Asian Review said that the Bank of Japan is taking a "serious look" at additional easing... In Europe, the European Central Bank left its key interest rates unchanged. However, at an associated press conference, ECB President Mario Draghi acknowledged downside risks were increasing again, meaning the bank may need to "review and possibly reconsider" its monetary policy stance at its next meeting in March. Markit's flash PMI for the euro zone slid to an 11-month low of 53.5, missing expectations for a more modest dip to a 54.2 reading. The International Monetary Fund cut its global growth forecasts for the third time in less than a year. The IMF now estimates that the world economy will grow 3.4% this year and 3.6% next year, down from its prior forecasts of 3.6% and 3.8% growth, respectively. COMPANY NEWS: On Tuesday, Morgan Stanley (MS) advanced 1% after its earnings and revenue topped analysts' consensus forecast. Big bank peer Bank of America (BAC) slid 1% after its earnings also beat expectations but its revenue narrowly missed the consensus estimate... On Wednesday, IBM (IBM) slid nearly 5% after reporting better than expected earnings and revenue for the fourth quarter, but forecasting below-consensus profits for the new year... On Thursday, Verizon (VZ) was among the best performers on the Dow, advancing over 3% after its earnings, revenue and wireless subscriber additions all topped expectations. Conversely, fellow Dow member Travelers (TRV) slid almost 1% after releasing its own quarterly results... On Friday, American Express (AXP) sunk more than 12% after the card issuer reported stronger than expected quarterly results but its 2017 profit guidance came in below the consensus outlook. The company's pledge to take out $1B in costs by the end of 2017 did little to change the mood of analysts or investors. Fellow Dow member GE (GE) slid a bit more than 1% after reporting better than expected earnings but lower than expected quarterly revenue... Schlumberger (SLB) shares gained 6% after the oil services giant reported earnings that topped expectations, approved a quarterly dividend of 50c per share and a new share repurchase program of $10B and said it plans to cut 10,000 more jobs... Netflix (NFLX) reported fourth quarter earnings that beat analyst estimates, powered by better than expected international subscriber growth. The numbers were met with positive commentary by several research firms, though decelerating U.S. subscriber growth was highlighted by bears as a warning sign for the company... Deutsche Bank (DB) disclosed that it expects a EUR2.1B net loss for the quarter due to a number of charges, including expected litigation costs of EUR1.2B... Xilinx (XLNX) advanced after reporting its third quarter numbers. The news may have been overshadowed, however, by a regulatory filing showing new agreements with its top executives, with several analysts highlighting that the change could signal a takeover is in the cards in the future... Alkermes (ALKS) plunged more than 44% after disclosing that two of three Phase 3 studies of its experimental depression disorder treatment did not meet their primary efficacy endpoints. INDEXES: For the four-day week, the Dow gained about 0.67% to close at 16,093.51, the S&P 500 rose about 1.4% to close at 1,906.90, and the Nasdaq increased about 2.3% to close at 4,591.18.
January 22, 2016
14:54 EDTVZVerizon, Hearst in talks for video joint venture, WSJ says
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14:46 EDTNFLXEinhorn short Tesla, Netflix, Amazon, Institutional Investor's Alpha says
Greenlight Capital's David Einhorn told attendees to his firm's annual meeting that he is making short bets against high-fliers Tesla (TSLA), Netflix (NFLX) and Amazon.com (AMZN), according to Institutional Investor's Alpha, citing a source who heard the presentation. Reference Link
14:44 EDTNFLXDavid Einhorn short Tesla, Netflix, Amazon, Institutional Investor's Alpha says
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14:19 EDTMCDMcDonald's January weekly 118 straddle priced for 4.5% movement into Q4
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14:13 EDTMCDEarnings Watch: Analysts upbeat on McDonald's ahead of Q4 earnings report
McDonald's (MCD) is scheduled to report fourth quarter earnings before the market open on Monday, January 25, with a conference call scheduled for 11:00 am ET. McDonald's franchises and operates fast food restaurants globally. EXPECTATIONS: Analysts are looking for earnings per share of $1.23 on revenue of $6.22B, according to First Call. The consensus range for EPS is $1.14-$1.36 on revenue of $5.98B-$6.45B. LAST QUARTER: McDonald's reported third quarter EPS of $1.40 on revenue of $6.62B, beating analysts' consensus estimates of $1.28 and $6.41B, respectively. The company reported that Q3 global comparable sales were up 4% year-over-year, with U.S. SSS up 0.9%, international lead markets SSS up 4.6% and high growth markets segment SSS up 8.9%. The company forecast positive SSS "in all segments" for Q4. NEWS: At its November 10 investor meeting, McDonald's said that while it has given a REIT structure "serious consideration," it said it would not pursue it "as the risk is too great." Chief Administrative Officer Pete Bensen commented that a "spin-off was closely considered given its potential tax advantages and current market trading multiples. Our review went beyond financial measures and evaluated the impact on all stakeholders, including our shareholders' long-term interests. We have concluded that any potential value creation from a REIT is out-weighed by the significant financial and operational risks to our business and the continued progress of our turnaround." Steve Easterbook, the company's president and chief executive officer, said that the company plans to increase the cash return to shareholders target to about $30B for the three-year period ending 2016. In addition to reaffirming its forecast for positive SSS in all segments in Q4, McDonald's raised its quarterly dividend 5% to 89c per share. For fiscal year 2016, McDonald's forecast systemwide sales growth of 3%-5%, operating income growth of 5%-7% and capital expenditures of $2B, split between opening about 1,000 new restaurants and reinvesting in existing restaurants. In December, the European Commission opened a formal probe into Luxembourg's tax treatment of McDonald's, and said it believed that a tax ruling granted by Luxembourg may have granted McDonald's an advantageous tax treatment in breach of EU State aid rules. STREET RESEARCH: On the day after its last earnings report, McDonald's was upgraded at Piper Jaffray, and its price target was raised at Deutsche Bank and Stephens. Wells Fargo said McDonald's is poised for "sustained momentum." Following its investor day, Piper Jaffray analyst Nicole Miller Regan said she remained a buyer after management reiterated confidence in positive global SSS trends and their current strategies will lead to strong cash flow. Sterne Agee CRT and UBS were also upbeat after the investor meeting. Cleveland Research analyst Steven Gojak said last week that McDonald's U.S. comps finished "strong," adding that the momentum likely continued in early January. On January 19, BTIG analyst Peter Saleh upgraded McDonald's to Buy from Neutral and said he expects its recent trend of recapturing market share to continue. A day later, Nomura analyst Mark Kalinowski raised McDonald's Q4 U.S. SSS forecast to 4.1%, up 60bps, and 160 bps above the consensus estimate of 2.5%. The analyst noted that if McDonald's reports a 4.1% comp, when it reports Q4 earnings, it would mark McDonald's U.S. best quarterly SSS performance in the last 15 quarters. PRICE ACTION: McDonald's has gained about 6.5% over the past three months and is up 0.25% to $118.12 in afternoon trading ahead of Monday's Q4 earnings report.
12:55 EDTDDDuPont volatility elevated into Q4 and outlook
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11:16 EDTMCDMcDonald's technical comments before results
The stock is trading in the middle of a recent trading range defined by a low at $115 and a high near the life high at $120. If the news is bullish, the life high is likely to be tested and possibly exceeded. Upside potential on a breakout based on the range would be to the $125 area. If the news is a negative surprise, the low of the range at $115 could be broken on the downside. Such a move would end the uptrend that began in late September of last year. Supports below $115 would be at $112.91, $109.85, and $105.20.
10:42 EDTNFLXStocks with call strike movement; AAPL NFLX
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09:34 EDTNFLXActive equity options trading on open
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08:08 EDTMCDMcDonald's volatility elevated into Q4 and outlook
McDonald's January weekly call option implied volatility is at 45, February is at 29; compared to its 52-week range of 15 to 31, suggesting large near term price movement into the expected release of Q4 results on January 25.
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