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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
July 31, 2014
11:13 EDTWFM, TFM, FWM, KRWhole Foods retreats after lowering guidance
Shares of Whole Foods Market (WFM) are sinking after the company cut its full-year guidance. WHAT'S NEW: Whole Foods reported stronger than expected third quarter revenue and earnings per shares of $3.4B and 41c, respectively, and said that its comparable store sales had risen 3.9%. However, the supermarket operator cut its full-year sales growth outlook to 9.6%-9.9% from its previous guidance of 10.5%-11%. The company also reduced its full-year EPS outlook to $1.52-$1.54 from $1.52-$1.56 and cut its full-year comparable sales growth guidance to 4.1%-4.4% from 5%-5.5%. "Our business model is producing industry-leading sales per gross square foot, healthy returns on invested capital and strong operating cash flow," said Whole Foods co-CEO Walter Robb in a statement. "We are seeing signs of stability in our sales trends and believe our strategic initiatives will help generate further momentum and produce increasing returns on invested capital over the long term," Robb added. ANALYST REACTION: JPMorgan analyst Ken Goldman downgraded the stock to Neutral from Overweight, stating that the company is likely to deliver low fiscal 2015 EPS as it increases its investments in a number of areas, including advertising, store refreshes, and home delivery. Additionally, Whole Foods could lower its fiscal 2015 EPS guidance well below the $1.74 it provided last quarter, the analyst added. Goldman reduced his fiscal 2015 and fiscal 2016 EPS estimates significantly below consensus levels and cut his price target on the stock to $38 from $48. Also downgrading the stock was UBS analyst Jason DeRise. Increased competition has caused Whole Foods' market share gains in natural food to stall, according to DeRise. To attract additional natural food customers it must cut its prices, he contended. The analyst downgraded the stock to Neutral from Buy and cut his price target to $41 from $48. Morgan Stanley was more upbeat on the stock, saying that the company's growth is poised to re-accelerate over the longer term. The firm recommended buying the stock on weakness and kept a $50 price target and Overweight rating on the shares. PRICE ACTION: In mid-morning trading, Whole Foods fell 3.4% to $37.76. Other supermarket stocks also retreated, with The Fresh Market (TFM) falling 3.5% to $29.62, Fairway Group (FWM) losing 1.8% to $5.95, and Kroger (KR) losing 1% to $49.22.
News For WFM;TFM;FWM;KR From The Last 14 Days
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October 1, 2014
13:52 EDTWFMActivist firm Relational winding down, dissolving funds, WSJ says
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08:36 EDTTFMThe Fresh Market to host analyst day
Analyst Day to be held in Greensboro, NC on October 8 at 10:30 am. Webcast Link
05:57 EDTWFMStocks with implied volatility movement; WFM DOWN
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September 30, 2014
09:55 EDTWFMWhole Foods Markets call active on renewed takeover speculation
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09:42 EDTWFMRumor: Whole Foods moves up on renewed takeover chatter
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September 29, 2014
07:40 EDTWFMWhole Foods loyalty card has significant long-term potential, says Oppenheimer
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September 23, 2014
09:40 EDTWFMWhole Foods checks indicate stabilizing trends, says Detwiler Fenton
September 19, 2014
14:04 EDTTFMThe Fresh Market upgraded to Peer Perform from Underperform at Wolfe Research
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September 18, 2014
17:34 EDTFWMFairway Group names Jack Murphy as CEO
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14:52 EDTKRKroger testing online ordering, pick-up service, Progressive Grocer says
Kroger is testing a "click-and-collect system" in Cincinnati which allows customers to submit their orders online and pick them up at a drive-thru windows, Progressive Grocer reports. The technology that Kroger is utilizing is the same technology that has been deployed by Harris Teeter, a company that Kroger acquired last year. "Harris Teeter has successfully scaled this model in their stores and we are learning a lot from them about it. Our approach with new technologies and systems is to test small and work out the kinks before scaling more widely," said Rachel Betzler, public relations manage for Kroger's Cincinnati division. Reference Link
14:06 EDTKRKroger price target raised to $58 from $55 at Argus
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10:44 EDTKRKroger board raises quarterly dividend by 12% to 18.5c
Kroger's Board raised the quarterly dividend by 12% to 18.5 per share, to be paid on December 1 to shareholders of record as of the close of business on November 14. The company continues to expect an increasing dividend over time.
09:36 EDTWFMActive equity options trading on open
Active equity options trading on open according to Track Data: AAPL YHOO TWTR VVUS RAD PWE WFM TSLA PIR SHLD
September 17, 2014
11:02 EDTKROptions with decreasing implied volatility
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09:47 EDTWFMWhole Foods mentioned positively in a Seeking Alpha blog
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09:36 EDTWFMActive equity options trading on open
Active equity options trading on open according to Track Data: AAPL WFM X YHOO TSLA TWTR RAX SHLD SPLS
09:31 EDTKRHouse Committee on Ways & Means to hold a hearing
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