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February 4, 2014
04:55 EDTBLK, BLK, BLK, BAH, BAH, BAH, TGT, TGT, TGT, CS, CS, CS, GM, GM, GM, UNH, UNH, UNH, HLT, HLT, HLT, ATVI, ATVI, ATVI, VZ, VZ, VZ, CTSH, CTSH, CTSH, M, M, M, DELL, DELL, DELL, ORCL, ORCL, ORCLOracle to hold a conference
Oracle HCM World is being held in Las Vegas on February 4-6.
News For ORCL;DELL;M;CTSH;VZ;ATVI;HLT;UNH;GM;CS;TGT;BAH;BLK From The Last 14 Days
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February 23, 2015
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.
12:28 EDTVZGoogle reaches deal with wireless carriers, acquires Softcard tech, Re/code says
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12:21 EDTUNHOn The Fly: Midday Wrap
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11:10 EDTUNHHealth insurers rise after CMS releases preliminary Medicare Advantage rates
The shares of a number of health insurers are rising after the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, or CMS, issued preliminary 2016 Medicare Advantage rates. According to Credit Suisse, the rates were favorable for health insurers. WHAT'S NEW: On Friday after the market closed, CMS issued a proposal for 2016 Medicare Advantage rates. The rates are preliminary and could change when CMS announces the final 2016 rates on April 6 of this year, the agency noted. In a note to investors earlier today, Credit Suisse analyst Ralph Giacobbe estimated that, under CMS' initial proposal, insurers would see rate changes of between -1% and +1%, depending on the risk that each insurer faces. The preliminary rates were "favorable" for insurers, since the rates were "in-line if not slightly better" than investors had expected, the firm stated. Moreover, CMS decided not to restrict at-home health risk assessments, as had been feared, and agreed to reduce the weighting of certain risk factors that had hurt previously certain plans with a higher proportion of low-income beneficiaries, acceding to a request by insurers. Insurers with the highest exposure to Medicare Advantage include Humana (HUM), UnitedHealth (UNH), and WellCare (WCG), the analyst stated. WHAT'S NOTABLE: After analyzing CMS' proposal, health insurer Aetna (AET) estimated that the proposal would cause government funding for its Medicare Advantage business to decline by about 1% in 2016. Aetna added that it is continuing to evaluate the changes outlined in the Advance Notice and their impact on the company and its Medicare Advantage members. OTHERS TO WATCH: Other publicly traded health insurance companies include Anthem (ANTM), AMERIGROUP (AGP), Centene (CNC), Cigna (CI), Health Net (HNT), Healthspring (HS), and Molina Healthcare (MOH). PRICE ACTION: In mid-morning trading, Humana climbed 5.3% to $164.43, UnitedHealth rose 2.6% to $115.56, WellCare gained 6.3% to $90, Aetna advanced 2% to $99.91, and Centene added 3.4% to $61.93.
10:40 EDTGMGM ignition-switch deaths increase to 57, WSJ says
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09:02 EDTVZVerizon to sell BlackBerry Classic for $100, CrackBerry says
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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.
08:05 EDTUNHCMS releases preliminary Medicare Advantage rates for 2016
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06:24 EDTGMGeneral Motors to legally challenge worker strike in Brazil, WSJ reports
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February 22, 2015
14:20 EDTGMUAW chief says GM buyback proposal too much, premature, Reuters says
Dennis Williams, the president of the UAW, said that an investor group’s proposal that GM buy back $8B of its stock is premature, and the amount too high for the company’s long-term health, says Reuters. The UAW indirectly controls the largest single block of General Motors shares, added Reuters. Reference Link
February 20, 2015
15:12 EDTHLTHilton management to meet with JPMorgan
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13:56 EDTVZAT&T VP critical of Dish auction tactics
AT&T (T) VP of Federal Regulatory Joan Marsh stated in a post to a corporate blog that FCC Auction 97 represents "hard evidence that there is significant continuing interest in licensed spectrum... It didn't matter that it was mid-band spectrum. It mattered only that it was broadband spectrum." Marsh notes that Dish (DISH) won more licenses than any other bidder though "none of that spectrum is currently supporting commercial wireless services," with her suggestion being that "auctions should be designed to ensure that licenses go to those willing to deploy networks – not speculators or stockpilers...The government should continue to place a high priority on allocating new licensed bands to the wireless industry." Marsh continues her analysis of Dish, claiming the double and triple-bidding activity carried out by its two designated entities "circumvented auction activity rules, masked actual demand and distorted the auction," as they were able to win significant allocations while enjoying a 25% small business discount. In response to Dish claims that all companies use DEs, Marsh replies that "in more recent auctions... bidders like AT&T, Verizon (VZ) and T-Mobile (TMUS) had no DE relationships, participated directly and paid full price for their licenses." Reference Link
10:20 EDTCSHigh option volume stocks
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08:41 EDTUNHInsurers should be bought on weakness related to MA rates, says BMO Capital
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08:11 EDTGMAlly CEO exploring subprime lending, sees loss of GM business, Detroit News says
Ally (ALLY) CEO Jeffrey Brown stated in a Thursday interview with The Detroit News that the company may return to offering credit cards and home mortgages, and currently plans to expand auto lending to subprime customers. The CEO said he expects to decide within 30-60 days whether Ally will consolidate its five locations to a single headquarters in the Detroit suburbs. Brown added that he expects GM (GM) to shift its $4.1B subsidized leasing program for Chevrolet from Ally to GM Financial, which the Ally CEO wants to offset by increasing subprime lending from 9% of total lending to 12%-15%. Reference Link
07:20 EDTTGTWal-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
07:04 EDTGMAlly CEO assuming company will lose all of GM's leasing business, Reuters says
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06:41 EDTGMApple pushing for 2020 production of its electric car, Bloomberg says
Apple (AAPL) is pushing to begin production of its electric vehicle as soon as 2020, reports Bloomberg, citing people with knowledge of the matter. Bloomberg notes that the move could put Apple into direct competition with Tesla (TSLA) and General Motors (GM), both of which are targeting a 2017 release for next-generation electric vehicles. Apple may still cancel the project if it becomes unhappy with progress, the sources said, though its vehicle team is already 200-people strong. Reference Link
06:06 EDTGMGeneral Motors names Craig Glidden as new general counsel
General Motors (GM) announced yesterday that Craig B. Glidden has been appointed executive VP and general counsel, effective March 1. Glidden will lead a team of staff attorneys who are integrated into all of GM’s regional and functional teams in more than 30 countries. Glidden succeeds Michael Millikin, who is retiring in July after a nearly four-decade legal career, including five years as GM’s general counsel. Before joining GM, Glidden was executive VP and chief legal officer for LyondellBasell Industries (LYB).
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