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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News For MHP;APO;WMT;TGT;M;FB;YHOO;ANAD;HOGS;ARO;DWA From The Last 14 Days
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March 6, 2015
06:15 EDTFBGoogle price target raised to $682 from $629 at Citigroup
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March 5, 2015
16:00 EDTFBOptions Update; March 5, 2015
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09:43 EDTFBOculus to launch smartphone virtual reality device by end of 2015, CNet says
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07:08 EDTAPOHoulihan Lokey to hold a conference
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06:08 EDTTGT, WMTWal-Mart CFO believes mobile payment is the future, WSJ says
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05:52 EDTFBInstagram announces new advertising format called carousel ads
Instagram is offering a new advertising format called carousel ads that allows marketers to include links on their products and websites. In a blogpost, the company said, "One way to look at it is carousel ads bring the potential of multi-page print campaigns to mobile phones – with the added benefit of taking people to a website to learn more. For instance, a fashion company could use the carousel to deconstruct the individual products in a ‘look.’ A car company might share an array of different features of a vehicle and provide a link to learn more about the new model. Or, an advertiser could showcase how multiple ingredients come together to make a delicious meal." The format will be introduced on a limited basis. Reference Link
March 4, 2015
17:51 EDTDWADreamWorks not investing in Mexican theme park
DreamWorks cited a previous report on it investing $800M in a Mexico theme park as erroneous. Comments from presentation at Morgan Stanley Technology, Media & Telecom Conference.
16:02 EDTFBOptions Update; March 4, 2015
iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures down 6c to 27.22. Option volume leaders: AAPL TSLA TWTR AA PBR NFLX MNKD FB BMY C according to Track Data.
12:58 EDTTGTWells Fargo sees Target results potentially beating expectations
After Target (TGT) yesterday afternoon announced that it would reduce its expenses by $2B over the next two years, Wells Fargo wrote that the company's results could beat expectations in 2015 and beyond. WHAT'S NEW: Calling Target's operating plan conservative, Wells Fargo analyst Matt Nemer wrote in a note to investors today that "the stage is set" for the retailer's results to surpass expectations in 2015 and beyond. Several positive catalysts could enable Target's results to beat expectations, Nemer believes. Among these are "outsized digital growth" fueled by new initiatives, new product launches, and other projects on which the company may be working. Nemer continued to identify the stock as his favorite name in the large cap retail sector and kept an Outperform rating on Target shares. WHAT'S NOTABLE: Also upbeat on Target following its analyst day was Piper Jaffray analyst Sean Naughton. Target has shown that it is willing to "evaluate historical operating disciplines," Naughton stated in a note to investors earlier today. Meanwhile, the retailer's new earnings algorithm, consisting of 1% in-store comparative sales increases and 40% growth in digital sales growth annually and yielding overall annual EPS growth of 10%, is realistic, Naughton believes. The stock's risk/reward ratio remains attractive, added Naughton, who kept an $86 price target and Overweight rating on the shares. PRICE ACTION: In early afternoon trading, Target was little changed near $78 per share.
08:44 EDTAROAeropostale March volatility elevated into Q4 and outlook
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08:02 EDTTGTTarget results can beat expectations going forward, says Wells Fargo
After Target announced a cost cutting plan at its analyst meeting, Wells Fargo thinks the company's operating plan sets the stage for the company to potentially beat expectations in 2015 and beyond. The firm believes that"outsized digital growth" or new products could enable Target's results to beat expectations. It keeps an Outperform rating on the shares.
07:45 EDTFBFacebook developing rival to Twitter ad platform, Bloomberg says
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07:13 EDTAPOApollo Global management to meet with UBS
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06:57 EDTTGTTarget shares offer attractive risk/reward, says Piper Jaffray
Piper Jaffray views Target's long term earnings algorithm, which is based on a 1% store comp and 40% growth in digital sales annually, as realistic and the company's capital deployment as encouraging. It believes the stock offers an attractive risk/reward and raised its price target for shares to $86 from $86 following the retail giant's analyst meeting. Piper keeps an Overweight rating on the name.
06:14 EDTFBFacebook implied volatility of 24 at lower end of index mean range
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March 3, 2015
16:23 EDTTGTOn The Fly: Closing Wrap
Stocks on Wall Street were lower, as the major averages receded from record levels. The Dow and S&P 500 closed yesterday at all-time highs, though the market was unable to build upon those records. Auto sales for February included disappointments for several companies, but that was quickly blamed on the poor weather during the month. With the economic calendar light, investors began looking forward to end of the week, when the highly anticipated monthly nonfarm payrolls are released. ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., no major economic data was reported. COMPANY NEWS: Automakers reported on their sales in the U.S. during February, with several falling short of expectations. Ford (F) reported sales fell about 2% last month compared to the prior year, and its stock fell 40c, or 2.41%, to $16.17 afterward. Shares of Fiat Chrysler (FCAU), which reported a 6% increase in U.S. sales last month, declined 52c, or 3.28%, to $15.31. General Motors (GM) reported its February U.S. sales rose a bit over 4%, but that was below the nearly 6% increase that had been forecast by analysts, and shares gained 19c, or 0.51%, to $37.80... Target (TGT) shares gained 32c, or 0.41%, to $78.00 as the company held its investor day meeting. During the meeting, the retailer guided for its fiscal 2015 EPS to be $4.45-$4.65, versus consensus $4.50, and projected that its sales will grow 2%-3% during the fiscal year. Target also said it is targeting $2B in share repurchases this year and said it expects 5%-10% annual dividend growth. MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was Orexigen (OREX), which surged $1.85, or 31.95%, to $7.64 after the company disclosed that its weight loss drug, Contrave, demonstrated a statistically significant benefit over placebo for cardiovascular events when announcing a method of treatment patent was issued by the USPTO. Also higher was Springleaf Holdings (LEAF), which gained $12.19, or 32.05%, to $50.23 after agreeing to acquire OneMain Financial from Citigroup (C) for $4.25B. Among the noteworthy losers was Primoris Services (PRIM), which fell $3.87, or 18.35%, to $17.22 after reporting fourth quarter results that fell short of consensus expectations and were below last year’s fourth quarter. Also lower were shares of Micron (MU), which fell $1.58, or 5.06%, to $29.66 after Nomura downgraded the stock to Neutral from Buy. INDEXES: The Dow fell 85.26, or 0.47%, to 18,203.37, the Nasdaq lost 28.20, or 0.56%, to 4,979.90, and the S&P 500 declined 9.61, or 0.45%, to 2,107.78.
15:50 EDTTGTTarget to cut several thousand jobs as part of $2B cost saving plan
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15:21 EDTTGTTarget falls, rebounds, levels to watch
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15:16 EDTTGTTarget sees 10% annual EPS growth for 2016 and beyond
15:15 EDTTGTTarget sees FY15 adjusted EPS $4.45-$4.65, consensus $4.50
15:14 EDTTGTTarget sees FY15 sales growth 2%-3%
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15:11 EDTTGTTarget sees $2B in share repurchases this year
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15:10 EDTTGTTarget shares down 2.9% as investor day meeting continues
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15:10 EDTTGTTarget sees 5%-10% annual dividend growth
15:09 EDTTGTTarget sees expected capex between $2B-$2.5B over next five years
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15:08 EDTTGTTarget sees FY15 capex of $2.1B, $1B of that in technology and supply chain
15:06 EDTTGTTarget sees 9.5%-10% EBITDA margins over next five years
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15:05 EDTTGTTarget sees SG&A expense rate of 19.5%-20% over next five years
15:00 EDTTGTTarget sees gross margin rate of 29.5% as achievable, appropriate
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14:54 EDTTGTTarget to continue to support dividend, repurchase 'billions'
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14:53 EDTTGTTarget sees $2B savings on expenses, cost of goods over next two years
14:43 EDTTGTTarget says while Food is not 'key' category, it plays a key role in Wellness
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14:43 EDTTGTTarget says focusing on Style, Baby, Kids, Wellness categories
Comment made at Target's 2015 Financial Community Meeting.
13:08 EDTYHOOYahoo CFO says focused on growing EBITDA
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13:04 EDTYHOOYahoo focused on making past acquisitions pay off
12:57 EDTYHOOYahoo sees digital video as way of growing buisiness
Comments made by Yahoo CFO Ken Goldman at Morgan Stanley Conference.
10:37 EDTDWAOptions with decreasing implied volatility
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08:39 EDTAPOApollo Global management to meet with UBS
Meeting to be held in Austin on March 3 hosted by UBS.
07:49 EDTTGTTarget to revamp grocery unit, WSJ says
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07:27 EDTYHOOMorgan Stanley to hold a conference
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07:21 EDTFBOculus hires away Google executive Mary Lou Jepsen, Re/code says
Facebook's (FB) Oculus has hired away Google (GOOG) executive Mary Lou Jepsen, reports Re/code, citing sources familiar with the move and a Facebook spokesperson. Jepsen was the head of Google X's display division. Reference Link
07:09 EDTWMT, TGT, MBofA/Merrill to hold a conference
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06:42 EDTYHOOYahoo volatility at low end historic range
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March 2, 2015
13:53 EDTFBFacebook COO: Working on simplifying buying process for ads
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13:42 EDTFBFacebook COO: Small business opportunity is huge
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13:29 EDTFBFacebook COO: Facebook is moving towards more public usage
Says mobile paying off in "a big way." Says ads integrate very well into mobile. Says video is "exploding on Facebook" and provides huge ad opportunities. Says not all video ads are "incremental." Sheryl Sandberg is speaking at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media & Telecom Conference.
13:22 EDTFBFacebook CFO: Messaging is core to company's strategy
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13:19 EDTFBFacebook CFO: We are investing from a 'position of strength'
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11:16 EDTTGTTarget to hold a meeting
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10:08 EDTFBStocks with call strike movement; HLF FB
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10:00 EDTFBOn The Fly: Analyst Initiation Summary
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09:54 EDTTGTTarget March weekly volatility elevated into financial community meeting
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09:11 EDTFBFacebook initiated with a Buy at Axiom
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08:29 EDTFB, YHOOMicrosoft reportedly to buy news app for $30M, TechCrunch says
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07:41 EDTFBMorgan Stanley to hold a conference
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07:10 EDTAPOApollo Global management to meet with UBS
Meetings to be held in Houston/Kansas City on March 2 hosted by UBS.
06:56 EDTFBIAC's Tinder working on first ads, Re/code reports
IAC's Tinder is developing its first ad product, Re/code reported Friday night. The dating app is also talking with Facebook (FB) and Twitter (TWTR) about using their ad networks to fill out ad space, Re/code stated. Reference Link
February 27, 2015
10:32 EDTDWAOptions with decreasing implied volatility
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05:57 EDTFBFacebook implied volatility of 24 at lower end of index mean range
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February 26, 2015
13:25 EDTFBGerman watchdog issues cease-and-desist letter to Facebook, WSJ says
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12:12 EDTFBFacebook climbs after analyst says Oculus could be used for NBA, NHL games
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12:01 EDTMAppeals court revives two claims by Macy's against J.C. Penney, Reuters says
A New York appeals court has revived two claims by Macy's (M) against J.C. Penney (JCP) that accuse J.C. Penney of contract interference and unfair competition related to a Martha Stewart contract, though the appeals court reaffirmed the prior decision that Macy's did not deserve punitive damages, reports Reuters, citing court statements. Reference Link
12:00 EDTDWADreamWorks management to meet with Piper Jaffray
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11:56 EDTMMacy's falls, levels to watch
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11:52 EDTMMacy's claims against J.C. Penney to be reinstated after appeal, Bloomberg says
10:41 EDTFBFacebook retakes the $80 level, runs higher, levels to watch
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10:36 EDTDWAOptions with decreasing implied volatility
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09:35 EDTFBActive equity options trading on open
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09:09 EDTTGTKohl's says some areas of U.S. 'reallly impacted by weather'
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06:22 EDTYHOOYahoo paying very high salaries, Business Insider says
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February 25, 2015
19:46 EDTFBFacebook's Oculus a significant long term opportunity, says Piper Jaffray
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15:03 EDTYHOOYahoo paying very high salaries, Business Insider says
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12:31 EDTTGTOn The Fly: Midday Wrap
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11:47 EDTDWAAnalysts clash on DreamWorks following Q4 miss
The shares of animated film and television show maker DreamWorks (DWA) are rising, despite the weaker than expected results reported by the company last night. Two analysts offered very different views on the company's outlook following its results. BACKGROUND: DreamWorks last night reported a fourth quarter per share loss of ($3.08), versus analysts' consensus outlook for a ($3.01) per share loss. The company's revenue also came in below expectations. Excluding $210M in pre-tax charges associated with DreamWorks' restructuring plan, its loss was (75c) per share, the company stated. BEARISH TAKE: In a note to investors today, FBR Capital analyst Barton Crockett wrote that DreamWorks' results were "ugly," as they included $155M of write-offs on films and TV shows. However, Crockett believes that the crucial factor for the company's outlook is whether it can consistently compete with the entertainment giants, including Disney (DIS), Viacom (VIA), and Time Warner (TWX). Crockett is not convinced that DreamWorks will be able to hold its own, and he believes that its 2015 results could come in below expectations. The analyst warned that the company may have difficulty meeting its 2015 consumer products revenue guidance. DreamWorks expects its consumer products revenue to double this year, but the movie-based toy space is "very competitive" in 2015, as toys based on multiple popular children's films are set to be released, Crockett stated. Moreover, after conducting checks online, Crockett reports that there does not seem to be a great deal of interest in DreamWorks' movie "Home," which is set to be released on March 27. He kept an Underperform rating on the shares and raised his price target on the stock to $14 from $12. BULLISH TAKE: DreamWorks' results were mixed, but the results are not very important, Piper Jaffray analyst James Marsh stated. The company's guidance for its TV and consumer products businesses were solid, the analyst believes. Moreover, the company "took specific and decisive action" to avert a liquidity crunch, Marsh wrote. Specifically, DreamWorks raised $185M of capital by selling its real estate in Glendale, California and then leasing it back, and increased the size of its current credit facility to $450M from $400M, Marsh reported. The moves should "largely" eliminate investors' worries about the company's liquidity position, Marsh stated. He kept a $26 price target and Overweight rating on the stock. WHAT'S NOTABLE: On DreamWorks' earnings conference call last night, the company's CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg stated that it did not obtain more than 10% of its revenue from Netflix (NFLX) last year. However, in an SEC filing earlier this morning, DreamWorks clarified that it had obtained 14.9% of its revenue from Netflix last year. PRICE ACTION: In late morning trading, DreamWorks rose 5.6% to $22.31.
11:18 EDTTGTTarget says worker wages 'competitive'
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11:10 EDTTGTTarget sees Q1 SSS up about 2%
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11:07 EDTTGTTarget says could be in a position to revisit stock buybacks later this year
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10:58 EDTTGTTarget says top priority is to drive digital sales growth
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10:37 EDTDWAOptions with decreasing implied volatility
Options with decreasing implied volatility: FUEL GREK NLNK HLSS SLXP LL VNDA AWAY DWA TRUE
10:29 EDTYHOOYahoo management 'seems open' to Yahoo Japan options, dealReporter says
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09:08 EDTDWA, TGTOn The Fly: Pre-market Movers
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08:26 EDTDWADreamWorks could struggle to meet 2015 outlook, says FBR Capital
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08:02 EDTTGTTarget says seeing early momentum in efforts to transform company
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08:01 EDTTGTTarget sees Q1 adjusted EPS 95c-$1.05, consensus $1.04
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08:01 EDTTGTTarget reports Q4 adjusted EPS $1.50, consensus $1.46
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08:00 EDTTGTTarget reports Q4 adjusted EPS $1.50, consensus $1.46
08:00 EDTWMTWal-Mart still pressured by prominent shareholder over pay, Reuters says
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07:01 EDTDWADreamWorks Animation addresses liquidity issues, says Piper Jaffray
Piper Jaffray believes DreamWorks Animation took "specific and decisive" actions to abate any liquidity concerns with the sale of the company's Glendale real estate and the expansion of its credit facility. Piper says that while 2015 is a transition year with only one feature film release, it is "increasingly bullish" about the prospects for DreamWorks in 2016. It reiterates an Overweight rating on the stock with a $26 price target following the company's Q4 results.
05:56 EDTFBFacebook implied volatility of 25 at lower end of index mean range
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05:55 EDTTGTTarget implied volatility of 25 at upper end of index mean range
February 24, 2015
18:15 EDTDWAOn The Fly: After Hours Movers
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16:15 EDTDWADreamWorks Animation reports Q4 EPS ($3.08), consensus ($3.01)
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15:21 EDTTGTNotable companies reporting before tomorrow's open
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15:21 EDTDWANotable companies reporting after market close
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14:47 EDTTGTTarget technical comments ahead of earnings
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12:53 EDTTGTEarnings Preview: Target sees Q4 adjusted EPS $1.43-$1.47, above prior view
Target (TGT) is scheduled to report fourth quarter results before the market open on Wednesday, February 25, with a conference call scheduled for 10:30 am ET. Target offers merchandise at discounted prices through its retail stores and online business. EXPECTATIONS: Analysts are looking for earnings per share of $1.46 on revenue of $21.64B, according to First Call. The consensus range for EPS is $1.44-$1.49 on revenue of $21.42B-$21.94B. LAST QUARTER: Target reported third quarter adjusted EPS of 54c on revenue of $17.73B, against estimates for 47c and $17.56B, respectively. The company said U.S. segment comparable store sales were up 1.2% in Q3, reflecting digital sales growth of over 30%, with Canadian segment SSS up 1.6%. In an interview with CNBC following the earnings report, Chief Executive Officer Brian Cornell said that the company was "not happy" with Target Canada's performance and that the company has "upped our game" with respect to data security. Cornell said the company viewed Q4 as a "notable inflection point." NEWS: In January, Target announced that it plans to discontinue operating stores in Canada through its indirect wholly-owned subsidiary, Target Canada. The company said it expects to report approximately $5.4B of pre-tax losses on discontinued operations in Q4, driven primarily by the write-down of the company's investment in Target Canada, along with costs associated with exit or disposal activities and quarter-to-date Canadian Segment operating losses prior to today. Target expects to report approximately $275M of pre-tax losses on discontinued operations in FY15. Target expects this decision will increase its earnings in FY15 and beyond, and increase its cash flow in fiscal year 2016 and beyond. Based on performance through November and December, Target now expects to report Q4 U.S. comparable sales of approximately 3%, better than prior guidance of approximately 2%, driven primarily by increased traffic and stronger-than-expected digital sales. The company raised its Q4 adjusted EPS view to $1.43-$1.47 from $1.13-$1.23. The company said GAAP results are expected to include losses related to liquidation of Target Canada,net of taxes, net expenses related to the 2013 data breach, which are not expected to be material, the impact of the reduction of the beneficial interest asset recognized in connection with the 2013 sale of the company’s credit card portfolio, which is expected to reduce GAAP EPS by approximately 2c. The company noted that the "vast majority" of exit costs from Canada are non-cash and said the exit will allow a quicker return to share repurchases. During the quarter, Target named Mike McNamara as executive VP and Chief Information Officer. Target said it is planning open 15 stores in FY15, including three distinct store formats: eight TargetExpress locations, one CityTarget and six general merchandise stores. The U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear a challenge by retailers including Target to the Federal Reserve's rules for debit card "swipe fees," meaning the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit decision, which upheld the rules, will must be followed, said Reuters. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman sent a letter to Target and other retailers for "allegedly selling store brand herbal supplement products in New York that either could not be verified to contain the labeled substance, or which were found to contain ingredients not listed on the labels." The letters call for the retailers to "immediately stop the sale of certain popular products," including Echinacea, Ginseng, St. John’s Wort, and others. Target recently announced that all online orders of $25 or more now qualify for free shipping. Target agreed to pay $3.9M to settle a lawsuit alleging the company used inaccurate price scanners, misrepresented product weight, and charged higher prices than advertised, The San Francisco Gate reported, citing prosecutor statements. Target announced on its website that it will shutter its online streaming service Target Ticket on March 7. STREET RESEARCH: BofA/Merrill upgraded Target to Neutral from Underperform. The firm sees a more stable outlook for Target with the exit of the Canada division and expects the U.S. improvements to continue. RW Baird says that while Target's decision to exit Canada should help cash flows longer term, its view on the company's U.S. fundamentals remain unchanged. The firm says it's hard to call the company's above-plan Q4 comps "robust" given the easy compare. Wells Fargo believes that Target's decision to exit Canada came sooner than expected and removes a major ''weight off the shoulders'' of the company. The firm estimates Target's U.S. earnings can grow to as high as $5.50 in 2016. Stifel downgraded Target to Hold from Buy. The firm believes near-term tactical opportunities are play out and management commentary indicates investments will be necessary in order to modernize. PRICE ACTION: Target shares are up over 6.5% over the past three months. In early afternoon trading ahead of Wednesday's earnings report, shares are down 0.5% to $76.27.
11:06 EDTMMacy's says will continue to be aggressive in buying back stock
10:54 EDTMMacy's doesn't see Bluemercury accretive to EPS in 2015
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10:52 EDTMMacy's says 2015 a 'transition' year
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09:40 EDTFBFacebook says over 2M advertisers now active, launches Ads Manager app
There are now more than 2 million active advertisers on Facebook, the company announced. Facebook also announced the launch of Ads Manager, a new mobile app that gives marketers more power to manage ads from anywhere. Reference Link
09:33 EDTMMacy's expects to launch offprice outlet stores in 2015
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08:39 EDTMMacy's sees completing Bluemercury transaction in Q1
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08:05 EDTMMacy's reports Q4 EPS $2.44 ex-charges, consensus $2.41
Reports Q4 revenue $9.36B, consensus $9.4B. Comparable sales growth on an owned plus licensed basis for the fourth quarter was 2.5%. On an owned basis, fourth quarter comparable sales grew 2%. The fourth quarter charges of $87 million were lower than the estimate of $100 million to $110 million provided in the company’s Feb. 3 news release on investments for sales growth. This was primarily the result of lower severance expense as the company was able to place more associates than expected in new jobs within the company in the course of its workforce reductions.
08:03 EDTMMacy's sees FY15 EPS $4.70-$4.80, consensus $4.84
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07:37 EDTTGTTarget February weekly volatility elevated into Q4 and outlook
Target February weekly call option implied volatility is at 57, March is at 25, April is at 23, July is at 20; compared to its 26-week average of 20 according to Track Data, suggesting larger near term price movement into the expected release of Q4 results on February 25.
06:41 EDTYHOOYahoo executive questions NSA director over spying, WSJ says
Yahoo Chief Information-Security Officer Alex Stamos questioned NSA director Admiral Mike Rogers at a Washington summit about the extent of U.S. government spying, reports the Wall Street Journal, citing transcripts of the event. Stamos stated "It sounds like [the NSA and FBI want a backdoor into] our products," to which Admiral Rogers did not directly respond. Rogers stated he believes it is legally feasible to allow the NSA to access encrypted information from U.S. companies. Reference Link
06:40 EDTMMacy's March volatility elevated into Q4 and outlook
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06:21 EDTWMTWal-Mart de Mexico announces retirement of CFO Rafael Matute
Wal-Mart de Mexico announces that its board approved Rafael Matute's decision to retire from the company, after having served for 17 years as CFO, and the appointment of Pedro Farah as the new CFO. The changes will be effective June 1 and Matute will stay until July 31 to help with the transition. Farah is currently CFO of Walmart Latin America.
06:08 EDTFBFacebook implied volatility of 25 at lower end of index mean range
05:57 EDTMStocks with implied volatility movement; AMAT M
Stocks with implied volatility movement; Applied Materials (AMAT) 43, Macy's (M) 28 according to iVolatility.
February 23, 2015
16:00 EDTFBOptions Update; February 23, 2015
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15:23 EDTMNotable companies reporting before tomorrow's open
Notable companies reporting before tomorrow's market open, with earnings consensus, include Comcast (CMCSA), consensus 78c... Home Depot (HD), consensus 89c... American Tower (AMT), consensus 51c... Ecolab (ECL), consensus $1.20... Macy's (M), consensus $2.40... Pall Corp. (PLL), consensus 87c... Windstream (WIN), consensus 3c.
14:54 EDTDWADreamWorks Animation volatility elevated into Q4 and outlook
DreamWorks Animation March call option implied volatility is at 58, April is at 51, June is at 49; compared to its 26-week average of 46 according to Track Data, suggesting large near term price movement into the expected release of Q4 results on February 24.
14:03 EDTMMacy's technical comments before earnings release
The shares are in a topping pattern, with the $62 area a key support level. If there were a break below $62, the topping pattern would be confirmed. Next support in that event would be at $60.57, and then at $59 to $57.03. If the news is a positive surprise, next resistance would be at $65.74 and then at the 52-week high and life high at $68.30.
13:56 EDTMEarnings Preview: Macy's sees FY14 EPS $4.35-$4.37, SSS up 2.5%
Macy's (M) is scheduled to report fourth quarter earnings before the market open on Tuesday, February 24, with a conference call scheduled for 10:30 am ET. Macy's is a retailer that sell a range of merchandise, including apparel and accessories, cosmetics, home furnishings and other consumer goods. EXPECTATIONS: Analysts are looking for earnings per share of $2.40 on revenue of $9.4B, according to First Call. The consensus range for EPS is $2.21-$2.59 on revenue of $9.32B-$9.56B. LAST QUARTER: Macy's reported third quarter EPS of 61c, above estimates for 50c, on revenue of $6.2B, slightly below estimates for $6.34B. Same-store sales, together with comparable sales of departments licensed to third parties, were down 0.7% from the prior year. Q3 comparable sales exclusive of licensed businesses were down 1.4%. Macy's chairman and Chief Executive Officer Terry Lundgren said the company was "optimistic" for Q4, though the company commented on the Q3 earnings conference call that it was "not counting on a lot of help from the economy" for the holiday season. Macy's said Q4 gross margin "could be flat or could be down." NEWS: In early February, Macy's raised its fiscal year 2014 EPS view to $4.35-$4.37 from its previous outlook of $4.25-$4.35. Estimates at that time called for FY14 EPS of $4.35. Macy's said the outlook excludes charges of approximately $100M-$110M related to the previously announced merchandising and marketing restructuring, store and field adjustments, store closings and asset impairment charges, as well as approximately $17M of interest expense related to the make-whole premium for the previously announced early retirement of debt. Macy's said Q4 comparable sales growth on an owned plus licensed basis was 2.5%. This calculates to growth in comparable sales on an owned plus licensed basis 2014 of 1.4%. On an owned basis, Q4 comparable sales were 2%. The retailer said its Q4 performance represents a "strengthening trend" from Q3 and spring season. The company said Jeff Gennette, president of Macy’s, will oversee Macy’s merchandise planning, as well as maintain oversight responsibility for merchandising and marketing of Macy’s stores and digital, and private brand product development. Gennette relinquished his day-to-day responsibilities as Macy’s chief merchandising officer. Peter Sachse, Macy’s chief stores officer since 2012, moved to a new role as Macy’s Chief for Innovation and Business Development. Jeff Kantor, previously chairman of macys.com, was named Macy’s Chief Stores Officer. The company also said R.B. Harrison would continue in his role as Macy’s. Chief Omnichannel Officer and that Julie Greiner, Macy’s Chief Merchandise Planning Officer since 2009, will retire from the company in August. During the quarter, Macy's said it would close 14 stores and restructure merchandising and marketing functions at Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s. In conjunction with the merchandising and marketing restructuring and store and field adjustments, as well as store closings and asset impairment charges, an estimated $100M-$110M of charges, of which approximately $80M-$90M is expected to be cash, will be booked in Q4. The retailer named RLJ Lodging Trust (RLJ) Chief Financial Officer Leslie Hale to its board of directors, sued Strategic Marks after the company attempted to acquire certain Macy's brand names and acquired Bluemercury for $210M in cash. STREET RESEARCH: Morgan Stanley downgraded Macy's to Equal Weight and removed shares from the Best Ideas List based on share and earnings outperformance. The analyst believes valuation appropriately values Macy's superior execution and sees balanced risk/reward going forward. Evercore ISI initiated Macy's with a Buy and $74 price target given its scale and stability, competitive advantages, strong vendor relationships and significant cash-flow generation. During the quarter, Macy's was also downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Northcoast. PRICE ACTION: Over the last three months, Macy's shares are up fractionally. In afternoon trading, he stock is down 0.3% to $63.51 ahead of Tuesday's report.
10:50 EDTWMTWal-Mart to host 2015 Global Sustainability Milestone Meeting
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09:48 EDTFBFacebook experiencing likely service disruption, downrightnow says
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09:39 EDTFBActive equity options trading on open
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09:14 EDTFBBelgian commissioned study finds Facebook privacy policy violates European law
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08:32 EDTTGTTarget lowers online free shipping minimum to $25
Target announced that, effective immediately, all online orders of $25 or more now qualify for free shipping, with virtually no exclusions. The new minimum is decreased from $50.
06:21 EDTFB, YHOOFacebook's shuttle drivers approve new union contract, WSJ reports
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06:14 EDTFBFacebook implied volatility of 25 at lower end of index mean range
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February 22, 2015
15:31 EDTWMTMcDonald's under pressure to raise hourly pay as Wal-Mart sets bar, Reuters says
According to labor experts McDonald's (MCD) and its franchisees may be under pressure to raise hourly wages as the improved economic landscape increases competition for good workers and as retailer Wal-Mart (WMT) raises its hourly pay, says Reuters. Reference Link
February 20, 2015
16:48 EDTWMTDow, S&P 500 finish week at record highs after Greek deal reached
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16:03 EDTWMT, FBOptions Update; February 20, 2015
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13:20 EDTWMTAnalysts divided on Wal-Mart after results, pay raise announcement
Barclays cut its rating on Wal-Mart (WMT) this morning after the world's largest retailer reported its quarterly results and gave forward looking guidance yesterday. However, research firm Janney Capital wrote in a note to investors that it believes shares of Wal-Mart will probably outperform going forward, as other retailers are likely to implement wage hikes similar to the one that the giant discounter announced. BACKGROUND: Yesterday Wal-Mart announced that it would raise the wages of all of its employees to at least $10 per hour by February 2016. The company also reported higher than expected fourth quarter profits, excluding certain items, but its Q4 revenue came in below expectations. Moreover, the retailer provided lower than expected profit guidance for its fiscal 2016 and lowered its fiscal 2016 sales growth guidance to 1%-2% from its previous outlook of 2%-4%. Wal-Mart's stock fell significantly yesterday after the quarterly report. ANALYST REACTION: Barclays lowered its rating on Wal-Mart to Equal Weight from Overweight and dropped its price target for shares to $85 from $90. The firm says the retailer's investments to improve the shopping experience at its U.S. stores will continue into FY17 and are unlikely to produce near-term benefits. It believes Wal-Mart's Q4 domestic comps were aided by lower gas prices and easy weather comparisons, and notes that weather is unlikely to help in FY16. Meanwhile, Janney Capital analyst David Strasser said Wal-Mart's stock dropped because of worries about the company's spending and the hit the company took from negative foreign exchange trends. However, other retailers are likely to implement similar wage hikes, causing the entire sector to come under pressure and enabling Wal-Mart's stock to outperform going forward, according to Strasser. Additionally, Wal-Mart is likely to continue to benefit from higher gas prices in Q1, wrote the analyst, who kept an $89 price target and Buy rating on the shares. PRICE ACTION: In mid-afternoon trading, Wal-Mart added 0.5% to $83.94.
10:01 EDTWMTOn The Fly: Analyst Downgrade Summary
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09:38 EDTFB, WMTActive equity options trading on open
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09:06 EDTWMTWal-Mart can outperform as peers follow suit on wages, says Janney Capital
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07:20 EDTWMT, TGTWal-Mart wage increase may pressure Target, Staples, Reuters says
Wal-Mart's (WMT) wage increase announcement will likely pressure the retail, fast-food, and restaurant sectors to potentially follow suit, reports Reuters, citing an Edward Jones analyst and the managing director of consultancy firm Strategic Resource Group. The analysts specifically named Target (TGT) and Staples (SPLS). Reference Link
05:50 EDTWMTWal-Mart downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight at Barclays
Barclays cut its rating on Wal-Mart to Equal Weight from Overweight and dropped its price target for shares to $85 from $90. The firm says the retailer's investments to improve the shopping experience at its U.S. stores will continue into FY17 and are unlikely to produce near-term benefits. It believes Wal-Mart's Q4 domestic comps were aided by lower gas prices and easy weather comparisons, and notes that weather is unlikely to help in FY16. The stock closed yesterday down $2.77 to $83.52 after Wal-Mart reported Q4 results.
05:21 EDTFBFacebook implied volatility of 25 at lower end of index mean range
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