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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
July 31, 2014
11:13 EDTWFM, FWM, TFM, 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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March 4, 2015
15:13 EDTKRNotable companies reporting before tomorrow's open
Notable companies reporting before tomorrow's market open, with earnings consensus, include Costco (COST), consensus $1.18... Kroger (KR), consensus 90c... Joy Global (JOY), consensus 36c... Ares Management (ARES), consensus 36c... Canadian Solar (CSIQ), consensus $1.34.
March 3, 2015
15:57 EDTTFMBofA/Merrill retail analysts hold an analyst/industry conference call
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March 2, 2015
11:10 EDTWFMWhole Foods price target raised to $65 from $60 at BofA/Merrill
BofA raised Whole Foods' price target to $65 following last week's analyst day citing impressive comp growth and technology investments. The firm is confident in Whole Foods' long-term outlook and reiterates its Buy rating.
09:07 EDTKRKroger March volatility elevated into Q4 and outlook
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February 23, 2015
06:14 EDTWFMWhole Foods to host investor meeting
Investor meeting to be held on February 27 at 9 am. Webcast Link
February 19, 2015
09:35 EDTWFMOption volume leaders
Option volume leaders: AAPL TSLA TWTR MCD WMT PBR SPWR WFM GILD FB SCTY according to Track Data.

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