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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
July 29, 2014
12:13 EDTPGTI, PFE, CTL, MW, MRK, WIN, GALT, UPS, FTROn The Fly: Midday Wrap
Stocks on Wall Street were mixed at midday despite a much better than expected consumer confidence reading and better than expected earnings from two pharmaceutical giants. With the Fed currently conducting its two-day FOMC meeting, investors may be choosing to remain cautious ahead of tomorrow’s conclusion. The averages have weakened in the last hour and are now mixed, with the Nasdaq leading and the S&P 500 lagging, but all of the major averages are not far from their starting points. ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., the S&P Case Shiller home price index rose 9.34% from the prior year in May to 170.64, which was a bit below the expectation for a 9.9% year-over-year increase. The Conference Board's consumer confidence reading climbed to 90.9 in July from an upwardly revised 86.4 June figure, beating expectations for a 85.4 reading and reaching its highest level since October 2007. COMPANY NEWS: Windstream (WIN) jumped 12% and sent ripples throughout the telecom sector after announcing plans to spin off certain telecommunications network assets into an independent, publicly traded Real Estate Investment Trust, or REIT. Windstream confirmed it has received a private letter ruling from the Internal Revenue Service relating to certain tax matters regarding the tax-free nature of the spinoff and the qualification of the spunoff entity's assets as real property for REIT purposes. In addition to Windstream, shares of other companies that provide communications services gained as they were viewed as potentially being positioned to pursue similar plans, with Frontier Communications (FTR) advancing 11% and CenturyLink (CTL) rising 4%. However, Morgan Stanley cautioned that this ruling could reopen the political debate on REIT exemptions, especially if bigger companies begin to explore them, while UBS said large Telcos such as AT&T (T) and Verizon (VZ) are unlikely to consider a similar structural separation... UPS (UPS) fell 3.5% after reporting Q2 adjusted earnings per share that missed expectations and lowering its fiscal year earnings outlook, citing its plans to increase operating expenses for capacity and peak related projects to a total of $175M. “These initiatives will increase operating expense this year, but will provide financial benefits for years to come,” said UPS CFO Kurt Kuehn... Two Dow members and pharma giants, Pfizer (PFE) and Merck (MRK), both reported sales and profits that beat expectations for their second quarters. Pfizer, which backed its fiscal year adjusted EPS view but lowered its adjusted revenue view for the year, fell 0.4%, while Merck gained 1.6% near noon after its own report. MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was windows and door supplier PGT Inc. (PGTI), which gained 28% after reporting better than expected quarterly results and agreeing to buy CGI Windows & Doors for about $111M. Among the noteworthy losers was Men's Wearhouse (MW), which fell 7% after the company gave long-term guidance during its analyst day meeting. Also lower was Galectin Therapeutics (GALT), which plunged 55% after the company posted a presentation on its website that contains a summary of the results of the second cohort of patients in the Phase 1 clinical trial for GT-020. Galectin's GR-MD-02 showed no difference from placebo across most efficacy biomarkers in the phase I study of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, according to The Street's Adam Feuerstein. INDEXES: Near midday, the Dow was down 1.79, or 0.01%, to 16,980.80, the Nasdaq was up 8.00, or 0.18%, to 4,452.91, and the S&P 500 was down 1.91, or 0.1%, to 1,977.00.
News For WIN;CTL;FTR;MRK;PFE;UPS;MW;PGTI;GALT From The Last 14 Days
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February 1, 2016
14:32 EDTPFE, UPSNotable companies reporting before tomorrow's open
Notable companies reporting before tomorrow's open, with earnings consensus, include Exxon Mobil (XOM), consensus 64c... Pfizer (PFE), consensus 52c... United Parcel Service (UPS), consensus $1.42... Dow Chemical (DOW), consensus 70c... Emerson Electric (EMR), consensus 51c... Archer-Daniels-Midland (ADM), consensus 66c... Baxter (BAX), consensus 32c... Sirius XM (SIRI), consensus 3c... Royal Caribbean Cruises (RCL), consensus 92c... Ally Financial (ALLY), consensus 51c... Michael Kors (KORS), consensus $1.46... ADT Corp. (ADT), consensus 46c.
13:25 EDTPFEEarnings Watch: Pfizer shares down approximately 12% since last earnings report
Pfizer (PFE) is scheduled to report fourth quarter earnings before the market open on Tuesday, February 2, with a conference call scheduled for 10:00 am ET. Pfizer, a biopharmaceutical company, discovers, develops, manufactures, and sells healthcare products worldwide. Its product portfolio includes medicines and vaccines, as well as various consumer healthcare products. EXPECTATIONS: Analysts are looking for earnings per share of 52c on revenue of $13.57B, according to First Call. The consensus range for EPS is 49c-54c on revenue of $13.08B-$13.99B. LAST QUARTER: After completing its Hospira acquisition in early September, Pfizer reported third quarter EPS of 60c, which beat consensus estimates of 51c, on revenue of $12.1B, which was also higher than consensus estimates of $11.56B. In Q3 Operational revenue growth in in developed markets was driven primarily by the performance of several key products, including Prevnar 13 in adults, Ibrance and Eliquis -- all products that are early in their life cycles as well as from Lyrica primarily in the U.S., and the inclusion of one month of legacy Hospira U.S. operations. In emerging markets, revenues increased 5% operationally, reflecting continued strong operational growth, primarily from the Innovative Products business. Operational revenue growth was partially offset primarily by the loss of exclusivity and associated generic competition for Celebrex in the U.S., Zyvox in the U.S. and Lyrica in certain developed Europe markets. With its Q3 earnings announcement the company raised its fiscal year 2015 earnings per share view to $2.16-$2.20 from $2.04-$2.10 against a raised revenue view of $47.5B-$48.5B from $46.5B-$47.5B. Commenting on the improved yearly view, the company CFO said "We raised our 2015 financial guidance for reported revenues and adjusted diluted EPS to reflect the strong performance to date of Pfizer-standalone, excluding legacy Hospira operations coupled with an improved business outlook for Pfizer-standalone for the remainder of the year.PFIZER-ALLERGAN DEAL. On November 23, Pfizer and Allergan (AGN) announced that their boards of directors have unanimously approved, and the companies have entered into, a definitive merger agreement under which Pfizer will combine with Allergan. Pfizer at the time said it anticipates the Allergan transaction will deliver more than $2B in operational synergies over the first three years after closing. Pfizer anticipates that the combined company will have a pro forma Adjusted Effective Tax Rate of approximately 17%-18% by the first full year after the closing of the transaction. The transaction is expected to be neutral to Pfizer's Adjusted Diluted EPS in 2017, modestly accretive beginning in calendar year 2018, more than 10% accretive in 2019 with high-teens percentage accretion in 2020. STREET RESEARCH: On December 1, Barclays analyst Geoff Meacham kept an Equal Weight rating on Pfizer after assuming coverage of the name. The analyst maintained a $34 price target for shares.On November 25, SunTrust upgraded Pfizer to Neutral and increased its price target to $37 from $34 on shares. Analyst John Boris said the Allergan deal makes strategic sense, providing much needed growth from earlier life cycle assets with limited therapeutic overlap. PRICE ACTION: Shares of Pfizer are lower by approximately 12% since its last earnings report on October 27. Pfizer shares are trading over 1% lower to $29.97 in afternoon trading ahead of Tuesday morning's earnings.
13:25 EDTUPSUPS February weekly 93 straddle priced for 3.9% movement into Q4
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11:38 EDTUPSEarnings Preview: UPS sees Q4 operating profit growing at double-digit pace
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11:05 EDTUPSUPS technical commentary ahead of earnings
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10:49 EDTPFEPfizer technical comments before earnings
On the downside, an important support level to watch is at the $28 area. This level has been an important support since early 2013. If the news is a negative surprise, the $28 zone is likely to be tested from current levels. A breakdown below $28 would resolve the range bearishly. Next downside objectives may be at the following support levels: $27.30, $26.42. If the news is a bullish surprise, resistance levels to watch as potential upside objectives would be at $30.95, $31.78, and $32.91. A move above $32.50 would end the current longer-term downtrend.
09:49 EDTPGTIPGT, Inc. upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Dougherty (pre-open)
08:09 EDTPFEOptions expected to be active
Options expected to be active: GOOGL GOOG YHOO UPS KORS UPS BAX RCL CCL PFE AET D STR DWA CMG ABT SYK.
06:58 EDTPFEPortola Pharma licensed right to andexanet alfa to Bristol-Myers and Pfizer
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06:57 EDTPFEBristol-Myers and Pfizer sign collaboration with Portola Pharmaceuticals
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January 29, 2016
17:12 EDTMRKOn The Fly: Top stock stories for Friday
Stocks began the session in positive territory and remained there throughout the day. The early strength was attributed to the surprise cut in interest rates by the Bank of Japan that put the country in a negative interest rate scenario. The market gained strength throughout the day and put in gains of almost 2.5% in what was a broad based advance for the major averages. January closed out with two winning weeks, but the month was still a very bad one for stocks, as the S&P lost over 5% even after today's strong showing. ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., the Commerce Department's first read on fourth quarter gross domestic product came in at 0.7% annualized growth, below the already anemic 0.8% growth forecast. The Chicago PMI business barometer bounced to 55.6 in January, topping forecasts for a 45.3 reading. The University of Michigan consumer sentiment index slipped to 92.0 in the final January print, missing the 93.0 reading that was forecast. In a surprise move in Asia, the Bank of Japan introduced a rate of minus 0.1% on certain excess holdings of cash while maintaining the pace of its asset purchases. Japan also reported data pointing to a softening economy, as total CPI grew 0.2% year-over-year in December, core CPI rose at only a 0.1% pace and industrial production fell a preliminary 1.4% month-over-month in December. COMPANY NEWS: Shares of Amazon (AMZN) declined 7.6% to $587 after the company's fourth quarter results came in below expectations. Meanwhile, Microsoft (MSFT), which reported better than expected earnings after last night's closing bell, gained 5.8% to $55.09... Confirming a news report that broke late in the day yesterday, Xerox (XRX) announced plans to separate into two independent publicly-traded companies: one focused on Document Technology and another Business Process Outsourcing company. Xerox also announced an agreement related to the governance of the Business Process Outsourcing company under which six directors of the new company will be selected by Xerox and three will be selected by current Xerox shareholder Carl Icahn... Chevron (CVX) reported a quarterly loss due to taking impairments and other charges of $1.1B. The company, which also reported that its average sales price per barrel of crude oil and natural gas liquids in the U.S. was $35 in fourth quarter, down from $66 a year ago, edged up 0.7% to $86.44. MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was Axiall (AXLL), which jumped 83% to $17.94 after it came to light that the company received, and rejected, an unsolicited proposal from Westlake Chemical (WLK) offering to acquire the company for $20 per share in cash and stock. Also higher were Visa (V) and Mastercard (MA), which gained 7% and 6.4%, respectively, after reporting quarterly earnings. Among the notable losers was Gilead (GILD), which fell 5.5% to $82.70 after rival Merck (MRK) received FDA approval for its own hepatitis C drug. Also potentially weighing on Gilead shares was the fact that competitor AbbVie (ABBV) announced financial results for the fourth quarter, including sales of Viekira Pak, its own hep C treatment, that fell short of estimates. AbbVie fell 2.3% to $54.58 following its quarterly report. INDEXES: The Dow rose 396.66, or 2.47%, to 16,466.30, the Nasdaq gained 107.28, or 2.38%, to 4,613.95, and the S&P 500 added 46.88, or 2.48%, to 1,940.24.
14:44 EDTPFEPfizer volatility elevated into Q4 and outlook
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11:45 EDTUPSUPS volatility elevated into Q4 and outlook
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09:44 EDTMRKGilead slips as another drug enters Hepatitis C virus space
Shares of Gilead (GILD), a leader in the hepatitis C virus treatment space, are sliding this morning after one competitor's hep C drug was granted FDA approval and another's sales disappointed. Additionally, Gilead reported its own news, announcing a shakeup of the roles held by its top executives. MERCK APPROVAL: Merck (MRK) announced last night that the FDA has approved Zepatier for the treatment of adult patients with chronic hepatitis C virus, or HCV, genotype, or GT, 1 or GT4 infection. Merck has established a list price of $54,600 for a 12-week regimen of Zepatier, which the company said it believes to "be in the range of net prices for other commonly used HCV direct-acting antiviral regimens at 12 weeks of therapy." In contrast, a 12-week regimen of Gilead's Sovaldi is reported to be priced at $84,000. Merck added that it anticipates that this price, as well as its "strategy to seek broad coverage across commercial and public segments," will help broaden and accelerate patient access to treatment. ABBVIE RESULTS: Meanwhile, Gilead competitor AbbVie (ABBV) announced financial results for the fourth quarter this morning. AbbVie announced Q4 sales of Viekira Pak, its own hep C treatment, of $554M, including U.S. sales of $197M and international sales of $357M. Analysts expected AbbVie to report Q4 Viekira sales of $568.5M, according to a Bloomberg consensus estimate that factored in four forecasts. EXECUTIVE CHANGES: Additionally, Gilead announced this morning that current chairman and CEO John Martin will assume the role of executive chairman, effective March 10. John Milligan, currently president and COO, will be promoted to CEO and appointed to the company's board. PRICE ACTION: In morning trading, Gilead shares slipped 3.5% to $84.50, while AbbVie fell 2.4% to $54.53 and Merck (MRK) gained 1% to $49.75.
07:05 EDTMWMen's Wearhouse to implement new structure named Tailored Brands
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05:39 EDTPFEPfizer: LIS awards infliximab biosimilar tender to Inflectra, Reuters reports
Pfizer says that the Norwegian Drug Procurement Cooperation has awarded its product Inflectra an infliximab biosimilar tender, Reuters reports. Reference Link
05:33 EDTMRKStocks with implied volatility movement; VRX MRK
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January 28, 2016
19:02 EDTMRKMerck receives FDA approval of Zepatier
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18:37 EDTMRKFDA approves Merck's Zepatier for chronic hepatitis C
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07:08 EDTMRKFDA PDUFA Date for Merck's Grazoprevir/Elbasvir is January 28, 2016
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