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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
May 20, 2014
12:36 EDTLOW, HDEarnings Preview: Lowe's shares nearly flat ahead of Q1 earnings report
Lowe's Companies (LOW), a home improvement retailer, is scheduled to report on its first quarter before the market open on Wednesday, May 21, with a conference call scheduled for 9:00 am ET. EXPECTATIONS: Analysts are looking for earnings per share of 60c on revenue of $13.86B, according to First Call. The consensus range for EPS is 56c-63c on revenue of $13.56B-$14.26B. LAST QUARTER: Lowe's reported fourth quarter adjusted EPS of 31c, in-line with estimates, on revenue of $11.66B against estimates for $11.67B. The company also reported Q4 same-store sales rose 3.9%. Lowe's forecast fiscal year 2014 EPS guidance of $2.60 against estimates at that time for $2.64 and said it expects total sales growth of 5% in this fiscal year compared to last. Lowe's said it expected to open 15 home improvement and 5 hardware stores in 2014 and expects its FY13 SSS to increase approximately 4%. The company said its board authorized the repurchase of an additional $5B in company stock. On its earnings conference call, Lowe's said it was taking a "cautious" approach due to the slowdown in housing activity. The company said first half comps would be modestly higher than second half. The company forecast $3.4B in share repurchases in 2014, spread evenly across all quarters. Free cash flow for the year is expected $2.9B and capital expenditures is forecast at $1.2B. NEWS: During the quarter, Lowe's appointed Michael Jones as Chief Customer Officer, succeeding Gregory Bridgeford. At the UBS Global Consumer Conference, Lowe's said the housing industry may grow at a higher rate than GDP and sees another good year of home prices going up. It also expects homeowners will continue to be reengaged in discretionary spending around the home. Lowe's and Porch.com announced the expansion of their strategic partnership to the more than 1,700 Lowe's home improvement stores across the U.S. STREET RESEARCH: Oppenheimer upgraded its rating on Lowe's to Outperform from Perform on expectations sales will improve as the winter weather gives way to more favorable spring conditions. Wedbush downgraded Lowe's to Neutral from Outperform to reflect slower housing trends and continued investment. OTHERS TO WATCH: This morning, Lowe's rival Home Depot (HD) reported Q1 EPS of $1.00 on revenue of $19.69B, beating analysts' estimates. The company also raised its FY14 EPS view to $4.42, in-line with estimates, and backed its FY14 revenue guidance of up 4.8% from FY13, sending shares up around 2% in mid-morning trading. PRICE ACTION: Over the last three months, Lowe's shares are down around 2.3%. In morning trading ahead of tomorrow's report, Lowe's is relatively flat at $45.52.
News For LOW;HD From The Last 14 Days
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October 31, 2014
08:38 EDTHDHome Depot price target raised to $110 from $100 at RW Baird
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October 30, 2014
10:09 EDTHD, LOWLowe's, Home Depot rise after Goldman says housing outlook improved
Shares of Lowe's (LOW) and Home Depot (HD) are rising after Goldman Sachs became more upbeat on both companies. The firm said that the housing sector's improved outlook made the stocks more attractive. WHAT'S NEW: Goldman Sachs analyst Matthew Fassler upgraded Lowe's to Buy from Neutral and raised his price target on the shares to $63 from $58. He increased his price target on Home Depot to $103 from $100 but kept a Neutral rating on the stock. Fassler increased his estimates for both companies to reflect his greater optimism about the housing sector in 2015-2016. The analyst said that his upgrade of Lowe's also reflects his more upbeat view of retail stocks linked to housing, given the lack of cyclical challenges facing the housing market. Furthermore, Lowe's can increase its margins significantly, as they are much further below their peak than most of the company's peer, according to Fassler. Meanwhile, the big box, Do-It-Yourself retailers face little competition from Amazon (AMZN), added the analyst. PRICE ACTION: In early trading, Lowe's climbed 0.5% to $56.09, while Home Depot rose fractionally to $96.48.
10:02 EDTLOWOn The Fly: Analyst Upgrade Summary
Today's noteworthy upgrades include: Ally Financial (ALLY) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Deutsche Bank... Banco Bradesco (BBD) upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at JPMorgan... Cree (CREE) upgraded to Neutral from Underperform at BofA/Merrill... Finish Line (FINL) upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at Piper Jaffray... Grand Canyon (LOPE) upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at Piper Jaffray... Hess Corp. (HES) upgraded to Outperform from Sector Perform at Howard Weil... Ignite Restaurant (IRG) upgraded to Market Perform from Underperform at Raymond James... Lowe's (LOW) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Goldman... MakeMyTrip (MMYT) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Deutsche Bank... MicroStrategy (MSTR) upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at First Analysis... Moelis (MC) upgraded to Positive from Neutral at Susquehanna... PG&E (PCG) upgraded to Neutral from Sell at Goldman... RF Micro Devices (RFMD) upgraded to Buy at Canaccord... Ruckus Wireless (RKUS) upgraded to Equal Weight from Underweight at Morgan Stanley... STMicroelectronics (STM) upgraded to Neutral from Sell at UBS... Sealed Air (SEE) upgraded to Market Perform from Underperform at Wells Fargo... Software AG (STWRY) upgraded to Neutral from Underweight at JPMorgan... Southwest (LUV) upgraded to Neutral from Underweight at JPMorgan... Sprint (S) upgraded to Neutral from Underperform at Credit Suisse... SunPower (SPWR) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Canaccord... Take-Two (TTWO) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Brean Capital... TriQuint (TQNT) upgraded to Buy at Canaccord... Visa (V) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at FBR Capital... Whiting Petroleum (WLL) upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at Stephens.
06:28 EDTHD, LOWLowe's upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Goldman
Goldman Sachs upgraded Lowe's (LOW) to Buy saying housing is going through a multi-year recovery. Goldman believes the large home improvement retailers have limited risk of disruption by Amazon (AMZN). It raised its price target for Lowe's shares to $63 from $58. The firm keeps a Neutral rating on Home Depot (HD) but raised its price target for shares to $103 from $100.
October 27, 2014
10:32 EDTHDVeriFone rises after Barron's says Apple Pay positive for company
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October 21, 2014
06:22 EDTHDStaples may be latest retailer to be hacked, Krebs reports
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October 17, 2014
16:55 EDTHDStocks end volatile week lower amid oil price plunge
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