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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
July 31, 2014
11:13 EDTKR, WFM, FWM, TFMWhole 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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March 25, 2015
10:48 EDTTFMThe Fresh Market says emphasizing earnings growth over sales growth
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10:43 EDTTFMThe Fresh Market 'really bullish' on long-term gross margins
Remarks made during TAG 7th Annual Spring Consumer Conference.
10:40 EDTTFMThe Fresh Market says board looking at internal, external CEO candidates
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March 24, 2015
11:11 EDTWFMWhiteWave hits 52-week high following upbeat analyst notes
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07:27 EDTKRTelsey Advisory to hold a conference
2015 Consumer Conference is being held in New York on March 24-25.
March 23, 2015
09:37 EDTWFMActive equity options trading on open
Active equity options trading on open according to Track Data: AAPL AUY SLB PFE MCP CELG VRTX SHPG GILD LOGI TSLA TASR NFLX SCTY WFM
March 19, 2015
07:35 EDTKR, WFMKroger price target raised to $90 from $80 at Deutsche Bank
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March 18, 2015
09:57 EDTWFMWhole Foods Markets calls active on renewed takeover chatter
Whole Foods Markets March 53, 54 and April 55 calls are active on 8K contracts (1K puts) on renewed takeover chatter. March call option implied volatility is at 38, April is at 25, May is at 30; compared to its 26-week average of 27 according to Track Data. Active call volume suggests traders taking positions for larger near term price movement.
09:43 EDTWFMRumor: Whole Foods active on renewed takeover chatter
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March 15, 2015
18:07 EDTKRKroger shares could still go 20% higher, Barron's says
Kroger shares could climb 20% higher as it continues to gain market share, Barron's contends in a follow up article. Reference Link

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