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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
May 23, 2014
16:31 EDTT, HPQ, HD, CRM, PETM, CPB, DKS, GM, LOCK, LO, RAI, AGN, VRX, AZN, PFE, DTV, DLTRMarket ends week higher after Fed minutes, housing data
Stocks finished the week higher after Fed minutes revealed that the central bank does not see inflation as a near-term threat and several economic data points were better than expected. MACRO NEWS: The minutes of the Fed's last meeting stated that committee members expect inflation to remain well below the central bank's 2% objective, adding that the Fed does not believe that it currently faces a trade-off between its employment and inflation objectives... Reports on existing home sales and new home sales in April both showed monthly gains, while a U.S. manufacturing index beat expectations. The index of leading indicators for April was in-line with expectations, while jobless claims were slightly worse than expected. An index of Chinese manufacturing, reported by HSBC, came in significantly above expectations and reached a five month high, despite still indicating contraction in the sector. COMPANY NEWS: AT&T (T) confirmed last weekend that it had agreed to acquire DirecTV (DTV) for $95.00 per share, including $28.50 per share in cash and $66.50 per share in AT&T stock. Also last weekend, Pfizer (PFE) raised its bid for AstraZeneca (AZN), but the U.K. drugmaker again rejected this "final" takeover proposal. In other M&A news, Valeant (VRX) stated that it would sweeten its previous bid for Allergan (AGN), but clarified that the new bid would not be an all-cash offer. Meanwhile, Reuters reported that cigarette maker Reynolds American (RAI) was in advanced talks to acquire its peer, Loriillard (LO)... Lifelock (LOCK), which provides identify theft protection services, tumbled after disclosing that it would temporarily suspend its Wallet mobile application because it is not fully compliant with applicable payment card industry security standards... General Motors (GM) shares fell after the company announced that it was recalling an additional 2.42M vehicles in four separate U.S. recalls. The automaker added $200M to the charge it expects to take in Q2 related to its recalls, bringing the total potential charge up to $400M... Dick's Sporting Goods (DKS), Campbell Soup (CPB), and PetSmart (PETM) were among the companies that dropped after announcing their earnings results. Meanwhile, Home Depot (HD), Hewlett-Packard (HPQ), and Dollar Tree (DLTR) were among the companies whose shares rose following their quarterly reports. INDEXES: The Dow was up 0.7% to 16,606.27, the S&P 500 was up 1.2% to 1,900.53, and the Nasdaq was up 2.33% to 4,185.81.
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August 18, 2014
11:41 EDTPFECubist rises after report sparks takeover interest speculation
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11:39 EDTHDHome Depot weekly volatility elevated into Q2 and outlook
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11:30 EDTPETMJANA says anonymous package shows PetSmart missing targets
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11:25 EDTHDEarnings Preview: Home Depot shares up nearly 9% since last earnings report
Home Depot (HD), a home improvement retailer, is scheduled to report second quarter results before the market opens on Tuesday, August 19, with a conference call scheduled for 9:00 am ET. EXPECTATIONS: Analysts are looking for earnings per share of $1.45 on revenue of $23.62B, according to First Call. The consensus range for EPS is $1.41-$1.49 on revenue of $22.9B-$24.08B. LAST QUARTER: Home Depot reported first quarter EPS of $1.00 against estimates for 99c on revenue of $19.69B against estimates of $19.95B. The company said same-store sales increased 2.6%, with U.S. SSS up 3.3%. The company raised its fiscal year 2014 EPS view to $4.42 from $4.38 against estimates at that time for $4.42. The retailer also backed its FY14 sales growth view of up 4.8% from fiscal year 2013. On its Q4 earnings conference call, Home Depot forecast gross margins for FY14 would be "about the same" as last year. For the remainder of the year, the company said its view on the housing market recovery had not changed. NEWS: At Oppenheimer's 14th Annual Consumer Conference in June, Home Depot reaffirmed its 4.8% sales growth view for the year and said SSS growth would be 4.6%. The company also said it expected $7B in share repurchases for FY14. The retailer also said it intends to increase its dividend every year. The Wall Street Journal said Home Depot is among the retailers betting that consumer basics, like toilet paper or detergent, will increase sales and lure shoppers into stores. STREET RESEARCH: Citigroup expects Home Depot shares will continue outperforming Lowe's (LOW) in the near-term given its store base concentration and better merchandising effort on the Pro side. Deutsche Bank lowered its estimates for both Home Depot after Tractor Supply (TSCO) and Lumber Liquidators (LL) pre-announced Q2 comp misses. The firm, which noted that the negative earnings revision is "relatively minor," said that while the business models are different, Tractor Supply and Lumber Liquidators have historically correlated positively with Home Depot and Lowe's on comps. PRICE ACTION: Over the last three months, Home Depot shares are up almost 9%. Year-to-date, shares are up over 2%.
11:05 EDTCRMOptions with increasing implied volatility
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10:46 EDTPETMJANA discloses receipt of anonymous PetSmart presentation
JANA Partners disclosed that on August 14, it received in the mail an anonymous, unsolicited package containing a presentation prepared by PetSmart, setting forth certain business plans relating to improving third and fourth quarter results and a cover letter noting that the company "has missed internal projections and criticizing the Issuer’s actions including those described in the Presentation as not being in the long-term best interests of shareholders." JANA believes that in the interest of full disclosure such materials should be shared with all shareholders. However, given that certain portions of such materials may be deemed to be competitively sensitive, on August 18, it sent a copy of such materials to PetSmart, together with a letter asking the company to "promptly release such materials after redacting any such competitively sensitive information." JANA says it does not have any knowledge regarding who may have sent this material, and has not independently verified the authenticity of any statements made therein.
10:01 EDTHPQOn The Fly: Analyst Upgrade Summary
Today's noteworthy upgrades include: Achillion (ACHN) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Deutsche Bank... CNOOC (CEO) upgraded to Neutral from Underperform at Credit Suisse... Dollar General (DG) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Sterne Agee... Equity Residential (EQR) upgraded to Hold from Underperform at Jefferies... HMS Holdings (HMSY) upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at First Analysis... HP (HPQ) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Monness Crespi... Halcon Resources (HK) upgraded to Buy from Hold at MLV & Co.... KapStone (KS) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Deutsche Bank... Sportsman's Warehouse (SPWH) upgraded at RW Baird... Westlake Chemical (WLK) upgraded to Neutral from Reduce at SunTrust... WisdomTree (WETF) upgraded to Neutral from Sell at Citigroup... Zimmer (ZMH) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at William Blair.
09:16 EDTDTVDreamWorks Animation appoints Fazal Merchant as CFO effective September 15
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09:02 EDTAGNAllergan names Jim Hindman as CFO, effective immediately
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08:47 EDTTRaymond James to hold a summit
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08:23 EDTDLTRDollar General says has expressed interest in Family Dollar 'multiple times'
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08:01 EDTPFEPfizer announces submission of Palbociclib NDA to FDA
Pfizer announced it has completed the submission of a New Drug Application to the United States Food and Drug Administration for palbociclib. This NDA requests FDA approval of palbociclib, in combination with letrozole, for the treatment of postmenopausal women with estrogen receptor positive, human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 negative advanced breast cancer who have not received previous systemic treatment for their advanced disease. The submission is based on the final results of PALOMA-1, a randomized, Phase 2 trial comparing palbociclib plus letrozole versus letrozole alone in this population of patients. Palbociclib received Breakthrough Therapy designation from the FDA in April 2013, for the first-line systemic treatment of women with advanced or metastatic ER+, HER2- breast cancer. This designation was based on interim data from the PALOMA-1 trial. The FDA has a 60-day filing review period to determine whether the NDA is complete and acceptable for filing. Pfizer will communicate the Agency’s decision.
07:57 EDTPFE, AGN, AZNCambridge Healthtech Institute to hold a summit
6th Annual Bioprocessing Summit to be held in Boston on August 18-22.
07:41 EDTHPQHP upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Monness Crespi
07:39 EDTHPQHP remains a top pick ahead of Q3 results at Deutsche Bank
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07:37 EDTGMReport says Russia may bar car imports if new sanctions enacted, Reuters says
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06:24 EDTDLTR, HDOptions expected to be active
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06:13 EDTDLTRDollar General makes proposal to acquire Family Dollar for $78.50 per share
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06:03 EDTDLTRDollar General makes $78.50/share offer for Family Dollar, CNBC reports
Dollar General (DG) will announce today a $78.50 per share in cash offer to acquire Family Dollar (FDO), CNBC's Andrew Ross Sorkin reports. Dollar Tree (DLTR) is seeking to buy Family Dollar for $74.50 per share.
August 17, 2014
17:23 EDTGMJudge appoints lead counsel in GM ignition switch cases, Reuters says
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