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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
March 18, 2013
12:30 EDTBTI, RAI, PM, LO, VGR, MO, CIGXMayor Bloomberg targets tobacco in next health push, WSJ reports
New York City's mayor Michael Bloomberg is proposing two new bills in his follow-up to the failed attempt to ban large sugary drinks, and tobacco products are next in his sights, reported The Wall Street Journal. One proposal would force NYC retailers to keep tobacco products out of sight in stores, while the other includes measures to combat cigarette smuggling, the report said. Reference Link
News For PM;CIGX;VGR;RAI;MO;LO;BTI From The Last 14 Days
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January 29, 2015
15:37 EDTMONotable companies reporting before tomorrow's open
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14:40 EDTRAI, MO, LOEarnings Preview: Analysts optimistic on Altria Group ahead of results
Altria Group (MO) is expected to report fourth quarter earnings before the market opens on Friday, January 30, with a conference call scheduled for 9:00 am ET. Altria Group is a holding company whose segments include smokeable tobacco products, smokeless tobacco products and wine. EXPECTATIONS: Analysts are looking for earnings per share of 67c on revenue of $4.53B, according to First Call. The consensus range for EPS is 64c-68c on revenue of $4.47B-$4.6B. LAST QUARTER: Altria reported higher than expected third quarter profit and revenue, and reaffirmed its fiscal 2014 adjusted EPS view of $2.54-$2.59, against consensus at the time of $2.57. The company said it expects stronger adjusted diluted EPS growth in the fourth quarter as compared to the first three quarters in 2014, driven by several factors, including a significantly lower fourth-quarter effective tax rate on operations compared to the fourth quarter of 2013 resulting from Altria’s 2013 debt tender offer, and lower fourth-quarter costs in the smokeable products segment due to the end of the federal tobacco quota buy-out payments. STREET RESEARCH: Earlier in January, Nomura upgraded Altria to Buy from Neutral saying it believes the Reynolds (RAI) acquisition of Lorillard (LO) will likely be approved, in some form, and result in better industry pricing, which will benefit Altria. As part of the upgrade, the firm raised Altria's price target to $56 from $45. Additionally, Wells Fargo upgraded Altria to Outperform from Market Perform, calling the U.S. Tobacco sector the "place to be" in consumer staples in 2015. Wells upgraded Altria Group with an increased price target range of $56-$58. PRICE ACTION: Altria shares are up about 14% over the last three months, and are up fractionally to $54.24 in afternoon trading ahead of the company's Q4 report Friday morning.
10:58 EDTLOOptions with increasing implied volatility
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09:21 EDTVGR, RAI, PM, MO, LOCalifornia regulators call for e-cigarette restrictions, CNBC says
The California Department of Public Health declared Wednesday that electronic cigarettes are a health threat that should be regulated, says CNBC, citing the department's health report. The report claims e-cigarettes cause nicotine addiction and emit carcinogens, and the department is calling for "protections" against accidental nicotine ingestion, funds for an education campaign, and regulations on the sale and marketing of the product. Publicly traded companies in the space include Lorillard (LO), Reynolds American (RAI), Altria (MO), Vector (VGR), and Philip Morris (PM). Reference Link
January 28, 2015
10:19 EDTRAI, LOLorillard investors approve combination with Reynolds American
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09:37 EDTRAI, LOReynolds American approves share issuances in connection with Lorillard deal
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January 25, 2015
17:53 EDTRAI, BTI, LO, MOWorries persist on Reynolds-Lorillard deal getting FTC approval, WSJ says
Shareholders are expected to approve the combination of tobacco companies Reynolds-American (RAI) and Lorillard (LO) this week but the real concern for the deal that will result in a formidable competitor to rival Marlboro maker and market leader Altria Group (MO) is whether the FTC approves of the deal, says the Wall Street Journal. British American Tobacco (BTI), which owns 42% of Reynolds, agreed to vote for the deal which will make the third party to the deal, Imperial Tobacco Group (ITYBY), the No. 3 player in the U.S.,as Imperial agreed to pay $7B for Reynolds’ Winston, Salem and Kool brands and Lorillard’s Maverick cigarette and Blu e-cigarette brands, added the Wall Street Journal report. Reference Link
January 23, 2015
09:36 EDTPMActive equity options trading
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January 21, 2015
09:37 EDTLOLorillard to host special shareholder meeting
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09:32 EDTRAIReynolds American to host special shareholder meeting
Special shareholder meeting to approve the issuance of shares of common stock to Lorillard shareholders as consideration in the merger of the two companies will be held on January 28 at 9 am.
January 20, 2015
10:44 EDTLO, RAI, MOWells sees tobacco stocks as 'place to be' for 2015
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07:21 EDTMO, RAI, LOWells Fargo calls Tobacco 'place to be,' upgrades Altria Group
Wells Fargo calls the U.S. Tobacco sector the "place to be" in consumer staples in 2015. Wells lists positive catalysts for the group as stronger pricing power, protection from currency risk and upside potential from e-cigarettes. The firm says Reynolds American (RAI) remains its top pick and it raised its price target range for shares to $79-$81 from $69-$71. Wells upgraded Altria Group (MO) to Outperform from Market Perform with an increased price target range of $56-$58. The firm also has an Outperform rating on Lorillard (LO). Wells has a "high conviction" that Reynolds' deal with Lorillard will be approved by the FTC in March or April.
06:23 EDTMOAltria Group upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Wells Fargo
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January 15, 2015
12:29 EDTMOFollow-up: Altria Group upgraded at Nomura
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12:12 EDTMOAltria Group upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Nomura
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10:37 EDTPMKraft rises after Goldman gets less cautious on food space, ups stock to buy
Shares of Kraft Foods (KRFT) are climbing after Goldman Sachs upgraded the stock to Buy and placed the shares on its Conviction List. WHAT'S NEW: Costs for food makers are declining as commodity prices drop, Goldman Sachs analyst Judy Hong wrote in a note to investors today. Kraft is among the U.S. food companies that benefits the most from lower costs, the analyst stated. Additionally, Kraft's pricing power is one of the strongest in the group and it is heavily exposed to the U.S. economy, the analyst stated. WHAT'S NOTABLE: Hong's upgrade of Kraft was part of a note in which she took a more balanced view of the U.S. consumer staples sector. The analyst upgraded the Food sector to Neutral from Cautious, noting that consumer staples stocks with outsized exposure to the U.S. market should be boosted by strong U.S. growth and more favorable foreign exchange dynamics than their peers. In addition to Kraft, the analyst identified the following stocks as her top picks within the consumer staples sector: Monster Beverage (MNST), Constellation Brands (STZ), Coca-Cola Enterprises (CCE), Keurig Green Mountain (GMCR), Freshpet (FRPT), Mead Johnson (MJN), and Estee Lauder (EL). Goldman also upgraded Hershey (HSY), Dr. Pepper Snapple (DPS), and Clorox (CLX), all to Neutral from Sell, downgraded cigarette maker Philip Morris (PM) to Sell from Neutral and downgraded brewer Molson Coors (TAP) to Neutral from Buy. PRICE ACTION: In early trading, Kraft climbed 3.7% to $65 per share.
10:00 EDTPMOn The Fly: Analyst Downgrade Summary
Today's noteworthy downgrades include: American Campus (ACC) downgraded to Sell from Neutral at Goldman... Apple (AAPL) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Mizuho... Archer Daniels (ADM) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Goldman... Barrick Gold (ABX) downgraded to Underweight from Equal Weight at Barclays... CNOOC (CEO) downgraded to Underperform from Hold at Jefferies... CSC (CSC) downgraded to Underweight from Neutral at JPMorgan... Computer Programs (CPSI) downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at William Blair... D.R. Horton (DHI) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at UBS... DDR Corp. (DDR) downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at JPMorgan... Dominion Diamond (DDC) downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight at Barclays... EVERTEC (EVTC) downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at JPMorgan... Education Realty (EDR) downgraded to Sell from Neutral at Goldman... Franco-Nevada (FNV) downgraded to Underweight from Equal Weight at Barclays... General Cable (BGC) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Longbow... Green Dot (GDOT) downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at JPMorgan... Greif (GEF) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at BofA/Merrill... Grupo Simec (SIM) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Goldman... Hecla Mining (HL) downgraded to Hold from Buy at BB&T... Host Hotels (HST) downgraded to Hold from Buy at MLV & Co.... Ingredion (INGR) downgraded to Sell from Neutral at Goldman... Insulet (PODD) downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at Raymond James... Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) downgraded to Sell from Neutral at Goldman... Magna (MGA) downgraded to Hold from Buy at TD Securities... Molson Coors (TAP) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Goldman... Nuverra Environmental (NES) downgraded at Roth Capital... Omnicom (OMC) downgraded to Hold from Buy at Evercore ISI... PetroChina (PTR) downgraded to Underperform from Hold at Jefferies... Philip Morris (PM) downgraded to Sell from Neutral at Goldman... Precision Castparts (PCP) downgraded to Hold from Buy at KeyBanc... Rio Tinto (RIO) downgraded to Neutral from Outperform at Macquarie... STAG Industrial (STAG) downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at JPMorgan... Silicon Laboratories (SLAB) downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight at Barclays... Sinopec (SNP) downgraded to Underperform from Hold at Jefferies... Sky (SKYAY) downgraded to Neutral from Outperform at Exane BNP Paribas... Teledyne (TDY) downgraded to Underweight from Hold at KeyBanc... Woodward (WWD) downgraded to Underweight from Hold at KeyBanc... Xilinx (XLNX) downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight at Barclays.
06:35 EDTPMPhilip Morris downgraded to Sell from Neutral at Goldman
Goldman downgraded Philip Morris to Sell and lowered estimates based on exposure to slowing emerging markets, FX risk, and lack of near-term catalysts to drive shares higher. Price target lowered to $80 from $81.

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