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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

New York Fed downplays Williams's speech, calling it 'academic' and not about July policy meeting
The New York Fed on Thursday played down the importance of President John Williams' speech earlier in the day that was interpreted by the market as an endorsement of a half-point interest rate cut at the end of the month. "This was an academic speech on 20 years of research. It was not about potential policy actions at the upcoming FOMC meeting," a New York Fed spokesman said. In his remarks, Williams said his research showed that, when interest rates are near zero, a central bank should "act quickly to lower rates at the first sign of economic distress." After his remarks, traders priced in a slightly greater than 50% chance of a half-point rate cut on July 31, up from 34% one day ago.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Red Robin shares soar 17% on resubmitted bid from Vintage Capital
Shares of Red Robin Gourmet Burgers jumped 17% in extended trading Thursday after it confirmed it has received an unsolicited proposal from private-equity firm Vintage Capital Management LLC to acquire all of the outstanding common shares of Red Robin for $40 per share in cash. Last month, Red Robin turned down a request for a special meeting with stockholders initiated by Vintage, which already owns a piece of the restaurant chain.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

SEC freezes assets of alleged fraudsters targeting elderly
The Securities and Exchange Commission imposed an emergency assets freeze on Thursday related to charges that two individuals are running an alleged pump-and-dump scheme targeting elderly retail investors. According to the SEC's complaint, Florida resident Garrett M. O'Rourke and Maryland resident Michael J. Black allegedly worked together between 2016 and 2018 to sell shares in several microcap companies to investors, including elderly retail investors, using high-pressure stock promotional campaigns. The SEC alleges that, as part of the scheme, O'Rourke aggressively touted the companies to prospective investors through unsolicited cold calls during which he repeatedly lied about his association with legitimate financial institutions and the prospects of the microcap companies. John T. Dugan, Associate Director of Enforcement in the SEC's Boston Regional Office, said: "Investors should beware of parties using the types of sales techniques alleged in our complaint, including unsolicited calls and high-pressure sales tactics."

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Boeing to take $4.9 billion charge in Q2 on 737 Max grounding
Boeing Co. said late Thursday it will record an after-tax charge of $4.9 billion, or $8.74 a share, in connection with the 737 Max groundings. The charge will result in a $5.6 billion dent in revenue and pre-tax earnings in the quarter, Boeing said. Boeing also warned that the estimated costs to produce the aircraft increased by $1.7 billion in the second quarter, primarily due to higher costs associated with a longer-than-expected reduction in the production rate. The increased 737 costs will reduce the margin of the 737 program in the second quarter and in future quarters. The 737 Max family has been grounded worldwide since March after a second fatal crash in less than five months. Preliminary reports found connections between the crashes, related to an anti-stall feature, and Boeing has been working on a software fix. Shares of Boeing rose 0.7% in the extended session after ending the regular trading day down 2.3%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Stocks snap losing skid as Fed official hints that central bank may lower rates aggressively
U.S. equity benchmarks finished the session mostly higher Thursday after Federal Reserve Bank of New York President John Williams said the central bank needs to act quickly to quash signs of economic weakness. His comments, made late in the afternoon at a research conference in New York, helped to deliver a jolt to equity markets and drive bond yields and the dollar firmly lower. The Dow Jones Industrial Average , however lagged behind its peers, weighed by declines in UnitedHealth Group Inc. and Boeing Co. . The blue-chip index closed virtually unchanged on the day at 27,222, while the S&P 500 index climbed 0.4% to end at 2,995, and the Nasdaq Composite Index closed 0.3% higher at 8,207. in a world where interest rates are lower than they have been historically, central banks must confront any sign of weakness quickly and aggressively.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Gold rallies in electronic trade as Middle East tensions intensify and comments from Fed's Williams back a rate cut
Gold futures extended their gains into the electronic trading session on Thursday. "News of the U.S. navy shooting down an Iranian drone always adds fuel to the market, but the underlying buying momentum after a break of the $1,425 area has propelled gold back to the next bit challenge" the $1,450 area, said Peter Spina, chief executive officer of GoldSeek.com. He also pointed to speculation in the market that a "large supranational organization" is acquiring all ounces of gold produced in North America, citing a tweet from Roy Sebag, founder of GoldMoney. Traders also saw comments from the New York Fed President John Williams as endorsing an interest-rate cut at the Federal Reserve's policy meeting later this month. The ICE U.S. Dollar Index also declined on the back of the comments, providing support for dollar-denominated gold prices. August gold was at $1,448.40 an ounce in electronic trading. The contract had climbed by $4.80, or 0.3%, to settle at $1,428.10 on Comex. That was the highest finish for a most-active contract since mid-May 2013, according to FactSet data.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Stocks jump to session highs in afternoon trade as Fed's Williams says it 'pays to act' quickly to lower rates
U.S. stocks bounced higher Thursday afternoon, with the equity benchmarks climbing to session highs after New York Fed President John Williams said that the central bank should act quickly at the first sign of trouble in the economy. "When you have only so much stimulus at your disposal, it pays to act quickly to lower rates at the first sign of economic distress," Williams said, in a speech at a research conference in New York. The comments were read as putting the possibility of a more substantial reduction of benchmark rates at the end of the Fed's two-day gathering July 30-31. Federal-funds rates currently stand between 2.25%-2.50%, and the market is starting to increase bets that policy makers may cut rates by as much as half-a-percentage point rather than a more conventional 25 basis point rate cut. As the president of the New York Fed, Williams has a standing vote on the rate-setting Federal Open Market Committee. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was trading flat at 27,232, but trading in positive territory, while the S&P 500 index was trading 0.3% higher at 2,9934, and the Nasdaq Composite Index was advancing 0.2% at 8,205. Lower rates are seen as supporting buying in equities even if it implies that economy could be confronting some headwinds.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Hovnanian's stock tumbles after disclosure of NYSE delisting notice
Shares of Hovnanian Enterprises Inc. plunged 14% in afternoon trading Thursday, after the home builder disclosed that it received a de-listing warning from the New York Stock Exchange, citing the market capitalization listing standard. Hovnanian said it received written notification of non-compliance on July 11, because the company's market cap averaged less than $50 million over a consecutive 30 trading-session period. The market cap declined to $43.59 million, after being above $50 million the previous 5 sessions, according to FactSet data. In the 30 sessions before July 11, market cap averaged $48.8 million. The NYSE's warnings comes after Hovnanian effected a 1-for-25 reverse stock split on March 29, after the stock closed March 28 at a pre-split-adjusted price of 55 cents. Hovnanian's stock has tumbled 57% year to date, while the SPDR S&P Homebuilder ETF has rallied 30% and the S&P 500 has advanced 19%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Traders see 50% chance of half-point rate cut in July after Fed's Williams remarks
Traders in the fed funds futures market now expect a more than 50% chance of a 50 basis point rate cut by the Federal Reserve at its July 30-31 meeting, following the release of prepared remarks from New York Fed President John Williams. The chance of a 50 basis point rate-cut was estimated at 34% a day ago. The 2-year Treasury note yield , sensitive to expectations for Fed policy, tumbled 5.5 basis points to 1.781%. Debt prices move in the opposite direction of yields. Williams said the Fed should respond early to signs of economic weakness."When you only have so much stimulus at your disposal, it pays to act quickly to lower rates at the first sign of economic distress," he said. Among members of the Federal Open Market Committee, Williams has been an advocate for preemptive, or "insurance," rate cuts to prolong the expansion.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Oil drops by nearly 3%, with U.S. prices at lowest in a month
Oil futures dropped by nearly 3% on Thursday, sending U.S. prices to their lowest finish in roughly a month. Prices reversed earlier gains, "reacting to the weakness in U.S. equities and over expectations of a production rise from the U.S. Gulf of Mexico region, coming back into service after last week's Hurricane Barry disrupted production," said Mihir Kapadia, chief executive officer of Sun Global Investments. August West Texas Intermediate oil lost $1.48, or 2.6%, to settle at $55.30 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. That was the lowest front-month contract finish since June 19, according to FactSet data.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Budweiser-parent Anheuser-Busch InBev's stock gains after WSJ report of potential asset sales
Shares of Anheuser-Busch InBev S.A. rose 1.2% in midday trading Thursday, after The Wall Street Journal reported that the Budweiser, Stella Artois and Corona beer brewer was exploring a sale of assets as it looks to reduce debt after calling off the initial public offering of its Asia-based business. Citing people familiar with the matter, the WSJ report said A-B InBev is considering selling assets in South Korea, Australia and Central America. In May, private-equity firm KKR & Co. had approached A-B InBev about buying back some of the Asia-based assets, the WSJ report said, as KKR had previously bought the Korean business and sold it back to A-B InBev for $5.8 billion in 2014. A-B InBev's stock has rallied 36% year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 19%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Active shooter threat shuts down Chico's Florida campus
Chico's Fas Inc. shares fell 4% in Thursday trading after the women's apparel and accessories company shut down its Fort Myers, Fla. corporate campus due to threat of an active shooter. "Local law enforcement and other emergency personnel were immediately notified, and are presently on site," Chico's said in a statement. "As a precaution, and consistent with existing security protocols and policies, all employees were notified of the situation in real-time. A lockdown of all facilities has been initiated, and employees at the site have been instructed by local law enforcement to shelter in place at a secure location." The company said that no actual shooter has been identified and the company is unaware of any injuries. Chico's stock has fallen almost 68% over the last year while the S&P 500 index is up nearly 6% for the period.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

These 3 stocks deliver a more than 100-point drag on the Dow in midday action
The Dow Jones Industrial Average midday Thursday was being yanked to session lows by a trio of components. Shares of UnitedHealth Group Inc. , Boeing Co. , and Walt Disney Co. were exacting a powerful 100-point drag on the blue-chip index, representing the lion's share of the modest declines in the price-weighted benchmark. The Dow was down 135 points, or 0.5%, at 27,089, while the S&P 500 index was sinking 0.3% lower at 2,975, with the Nasdaq Composite Index 0.5% lower at 8,143. A $1 move in any one of the Dow's components equates to a roughly 6.8-point swing in the index. UnitedHealth shares were down $6.75 at $259.90 a share, a decline of 2.5%, those for Boeing were off $5.83 to reach $363.57, a drop of 1.6%, while Disney's shares were edging 1.4% lower, off $2.03 at $140.52.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Akerna's stock falls, but pares losses after disclosing stock offering by shareholders
Share of Akerna Corp. slumped 1.5% in morning trading Thursday, after the Denver-based software-as-a-service (SaaS) company focused on the cannabis industry disclosed a relatively large sale of common stock by a "certain selling stockholders." The stock pared earlier losses of as much as 10.2%. The company filed late Wednesday a registration statement for the resale of 6,699,766 shares of common stock, including 5,554,942 common stock, 901,074 common stock underlying options and 243,750 common stock underlying warrants. The sale would be valued at $88.1 million at the proposed maximum offering price of $13.15 a share. Akerna will not receive any proceeds from the offering. After the offering, the number of common stock outstanding will increase by 10.8% to 11,734,570 shares. The stock has still run up 33.4% over the past three months, while the AdvisorShares Pure Cannabis ETF has fallen 13.3% and the S&P 500 has gained 2.6%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

EIA reports a weekly rise of 62 billion cubic feet in U.S. natural-gas supplies
The U.S. Energy Information Administration reported Thursday that domestic supplies of natural gas rose by 62 billion cubic feet for the week ended July 12. The data were expected to show a build of 65 billion cubic feet, on average, according to analysts polled by S&P Global Platts. Total stocks now stand at 2.533 trillion cubic feet, up 291 billion cubic feet from a year ago, but 143 billion below the five-year average, the government said. August natural gas traded at $2.325 per million British thermal units, up 2.1 cents, or 0.9%, from Wednesday's settlement. It was trading at $2.335 before the data.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

U.S. leading economic index posts biggest drop since 2016
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - The leading economic index fell 0.3% in ?June to mark the biggest decline in three years, suggesting U.S. growth is likely to be softer in the months ahead. "As the U.S. economy enters its 11th year of expansion, the longest in U.S. history, the LEI suggests growth is likely to remain slow in the second half of the year," said Ataman Ozyildirim, director of business cycles research at the board. The decline in June, however, appears to be a bit of an anomaly. Weekly jobless claims spiked in June, but have since fallen again. And manufacturing orders and housing permits were unusually weak last month, suggesting a rebound might be in the cards soon. A measure of? current conditions rose 0.1% and a "?lagging" index climbed 0.6%. The LEI is a weighted gauge of 10 indicators designed to signal business-cycle peaks and valleys.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

UnitedHealth's stock slump exacts nearly 30-point toll on Dow industrials -- but IBM's rally caps loss
A decline in shares of UnitedHealth Group Inc. Thursday morning was producing the most severe drag on the blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average in early action. Shares of UnitedHealth were down 1.8%, or about $4.75 lower at $261.90, translating to a roughly 30-point drag on the price-weighted Dow. The company's shares had hit a low of $257.26 near the open, representing a drag of about 50 points on the Dow. A $1 move in any one of its 30 components of the 123-year-old index equates to a 6.8-point swing. The Dow was down 18 points, or 0.1%, at 27,198. Capping the decline in the Dow was an advance in International Business Machines Corp., which was up 3.2%, delivering a roughly 30-point boost to the Dow. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 index was off 0.1% at 2,981, with a 0.2% decline for the Nasdaq Composite Index to reach 8,170. The losses for UnitedHealth come even as the health insurer reported better-than-expected quarterly results and lifted its full-year earnings outlook to $13.95 to $14.15 a share, from its previous forecast of $13.80 to $14.05. Late Wednesday, International Business Machines Corp.'s quarterly results topped estimates.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Stocks set to decline for third straight session as earnings remain in focus
U.S. stocks were on track for a third straight decline on Thursday as investors monitored corporate earnings and trade developments. The S&P 500 fell 0.3% to 2,976. The Dow Jones Industrial Average retreated 76 points, or 0.3%, to 27,143. The Nasdaq Composite was down 0.3% to 8,157. Another loss for the S&P 500 would see the equity benchmark record its longest losing streak since a four-session drop ending on June 26. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said that U.S.-China trade talks were set to begin again. But prospects for a successful resolution came in doubt after The Wall Street Journal reported the Trump administration was unsure how to follow through with Beijing's demands that the U.S. ease restrictions on Huawei Technologies Co. In company news, shares of Netflix Inc. tumbled 9% after it reported a net loss in paid subscribers, the first since 2011.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Aurora Cannabis shares slide after BofA downgrade on concerns about cash burn
Aurora Cannabis Inc. shares fell 2.3% in early trade Thursday, after BofA Merrill Lynch downgraded the stock to neutral from buy and lowered its stock price target to $8 from $10, on concerns about the company's cash burn. "Aurora has emerged as one of the best operators in the cannabis sector, with industry leading scale and margins even vs other large peers, and global optionality," analyst Christopher Carey wrote in a note to clients. "However, despite this, and a focus on profit, (CQ2 positive EBITDA target), it is burning cash and by our estimates could be cash negative by CQ120 (absent financing), namely if a large convertible debenture due in CQ120 stays out of the money." Even if its current cash burn were to improve, Aurora will likely need funding in the next few quarters," said the analyst The company has access to about C$100 million in a credit facility, but a convertible note that matures in the first quarter of 2020 will likely need to be paid in cash, he wrote. Shares have gained 47% in 2019, while the S&P 500 has gained 19%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

New York Mortgage Trust's stock falls on heavy volume after public share offering
Shares of New York Mortgage Trust Inc. slumped 2.6% in very active premarket trading Thursday, after the real estate investment trust announced a public offering of common stock, which represented about 9.5% of the shares outstanding. Volume topped 7.1 million shares, enough to make it the most actively traded stock ahead of the open, and already nearly triple the full-day average. The company said late Wednesday it was offering 20 million shares to the public, and said Thursday it expected gross proceeds of $122.2 million. That would imply a pricing of $6.11 a share, which represents a 2.4% discount to Wednesday's closing price of $6.26. The REIT said it plans to use the proceeds from the offering for general business purposes, which may including acquiring assets. The stock has gained 6.3% year to date through Wednesday, while the SPDR Real Estate Select Sector ETF has rallied 20.7% and the S&P 500 has climbed 19.1%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Morgan Stanley's stock turns lower, after downbeat NII outlook for rest of the year
Morgan Stanley's stock turned lower in premarket trading, as a downbeat outlook for net interest income (NII) offset second-quarter profit, revenue and NII beats. Chief Financial Officer Jon Pruzan said on the post-earnings conference call, according to a transcript provided by FactSet, that third-quarter NII is expected to be "largely in line" with year-ago results, while the current FactSet NII consensus of $992 million implies 6.0% growth. He said current expectations for lower interest rates could potentially have "a more material impact in the fourth quarter." The FactSet Q4 NII consensus of $996 million implies a 0.7% increase. The stock was down 1.3% ahead of the open, reversing earlier gains of as much as 0.8%. Pruzan said the third quarter was off to a strong start, "we are cognizant of a summer slowdown and that conviction remains lackluster compared to this time last year," as uncertainties over global economic growth have increased, "which may impact confidence and activity levels. The stock has lost 8.0% over the past three months through Wednesday, while the SPDR Financial Select Sector ETF has gained 1.9% and the S&P 500 has tacked on 2.7%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Union Pacific's stock bounces after earnings beat, but revenue falls a bit shy
Shares of Union Pacific Corp. rallied 2.5% in premarket trading Thursday, after the railroad company reported second-quarter earnings that beat expectations, while revenue fell a bit shy. The stock bounced after a 6.1% tumble on Wednesday, in the wake of rival rail transportation company CSX Corp.'s disappointing results. Net income rose to $1.57 billion, or $2.22 a share, from $1.51 billion, or $1.98 a share, in the year-ago period. The FactSet consensus for EPS was $2.15. Total revenue slipped 1% to $5.60 billion, below the FactSet consensus of $5.64 billion, as energy revenue fell more than expected, while premium and agricultural revenue topped expectations and industrial revenue was in line. Total freight revenue fell 2%, as lower volumes offset pricing gains. The stock has gained 19.0% year to date through Wednesday, while the Dow Jones Transportation Average has advanced 13.5% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average has hiked up 16.7%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Morgan Stanley's stock gains after profit, revenue and NII beats
Shares of Morgan Stanley gained 0.6% in premarket trading Thursday, after the investment bank reported a second-quarter profit, revenue and net interest income that beat expectations, as growth in its wealth and investment management businesses helped offset declines in its sales and trading businesses. Net income fell to $2.20 billion, or $1.23 a share, from $2.44 billion, or $1.30 a share, in the year-ago period. The FactSet EPS consensus was $1.14. Net revenue fell 3% to $10.24 billion, but was above the FactSet consensus of $9.99 billion, as net interest income increased 14% to $1.03 billion to beat expectations of $992.9 million. Sales and trading (S&T) revenue declined 12%, as equity S&T revenue fell 14% to $2.13 billion to miss the FactSet consensus of $2.20 billion and fixed income S&T revenue declined 18% to $1.13 billion to miss expectations of $1.35 billion. Separately, the bank said the quarterly dividend was raised to 35 cents a share from 30 cents. The stock has advanced 10.4% year to date through Wednesday, while the SPDR Financial Select Sector ETF has rallied 16.9% and the S&P 500 has climbed 19.1%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Apple upgraded to outperform at Raymond James on 5G iPhone view
Apple Inc. was upgraded to outperform from market perform by Raymond James, which says it has greater confidence on next year's 5G iPhone cycle. Raymond James also upgraded Skyworks to outperform, since it's a chip supplier. "Our more recent checks suggest that Apple plans to bring 5G to a wider range of iPhone models, which is different from their plan when they had intended to use Intel's modem. We feel that offering 5G at lower price points will drive a stronger product cycle, and early production plans tend to confirm that view," said the analysts.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Philip Morris' stock jumps after earnings and revenue beat, raised profit guidance
Shares of Philip Morris International Inc. rallied 2.2% in premarket trading Thursday, after the cigarette seller reported a second-quarter profit and revenue that beat expectations, and raised its full-year earnings guidance. Net income rose to $2.31 billion, or $1.49 a share, from $2.19 billion, or $1.41 a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding non-recurring items, adjusted EPS came in at $1.46, above the FactSet consensus of $1.32. Net revenue slipped 0.3% to $7.73 billion, to reflect negative effects of currency translation and favorable pricing variance, but was above the FactSet consensus of $7.38 billion. Total cigarettes shipment volume fell 3.6% during the quarter, as Marlboro shipments declined 1.2%, while heated tobacco units shipment volume increased 37%. The company raised its full-year EPS outlook to $4.94 from $4.87. The stock has hiked up 21.4% year to date through Wednesday, while the S&P 500 has gained 19.1%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Cannabis extraction company Neptune Wellness raises $41 million
Cannabis extraction company Neptune Wellness Solutions Inc. said Thursday it has raised $41 million in a private placement with existing and new investors led by Perceptive Advisors. The company issued a total of 9.4 million shares, priced at $4.40 each. Proceeds of the deal will be used to fund the initial payment for the acquisition of SugarLeaf Labs and Forest Remedies LLC, as well as for general corporate purposes. The SugarLeaf deal is expected to close on or before July 31. Cowen was lead and sole U.S. placement agent on the deal with GMP Securities acting as Canadian placement agent. Neptune named Michael Cammarata at its new CEO in early July, replacing Jim Hamilton who stepped down after more than four years in the role. Cammarata was co-founder of wellness brand Schmidt's Natural, now part of Unilever Plc . Neptune shares were not active premarket, but have gained 93% in 2019, while the S&P 500 has gained 19%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Hexo co-Founder Adam Miron to step down from role as chief brand officer
Quebec-based cannabis company Hexo Corp. said Thursday that co-Founder Adam Miron is stepping down from his role as chief brand officer, effective today. Miron co-founded the company with Chief Executive Sebastien St-Louis in 2013. Miron will remain on the board and will continue to be president of the board of Hexo Med, the company's Greek unit. Shares were not active premarket, but have gained 49% in 2019, while the S&P 500 has gained 19%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Qualcomm to appeal European Commission finding on decade-old chip shipments and 242 million euros fine
Qualcomm Inc. said Thursday it is planning to appeal at European Commission finding that it engaged in predatory pricing practices for sales of three cellular baseband chipsets to two customers during certain calendar quarters between 2009 and 2011. The commission fined the chip company 242 million euros ($271 million). Qualcomm plans to appeal the finding to the General Court of the European Union, and will offer a financial guarantee in lieu of paying the fine while the appeal is pending. "The Commission spent years investigating sales to two customers, each of whom said that they favored Qualcomm chips not because of price but because rival chipsets were technologically inferior,' the company's general counsel Don Rosenberg said in a statement. Qualcomm shares fell 1.1% in premarket trade, but have gained 33% in 2019, while the S&P 500 has gained 19%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Honeywell's stock rises after earnings beat and upbeat guidance, while sales fell shy
Shares of Honeywell International Inc. rose 0.8% in premarket trading Thursday after the industrial conglomerate reported a second-quarter profit that topped expectations while sales fell shy, and lifted the low end of its full-year guidance ranges. Net income rose to $1.56 billion, or $2.10 a share, from $1.28 billion, or $1.68 a share, in the year-ago period. Adjusted earnings per share rose to $2.10 from $1.93, above the FactSet consensus of $2.08. Sales fell 15% to $9.24 billion, citing the impact of spinoffs, and missed the FactSet consensus of $9.35 billion, as aerospace sales fell less than expected, building technologies and performance materials and technologies sales were roughly in line with expectations and safety and productivity solutions sales fell more than expected. For 2019, Honeywell lifted the low end of its guidance ranges for EPS to $7.95 to $8.15 from $7.90 to $8.15, for sales to $36.7 billion to $37.2 billion from $36.5 billion to $37.2 billion and for adjusted free cash flow to $5.7 billion to $6.0 billion from $5.5 billion to $6.0 billion. The stock has rallied 27.6% year to date through Wednesday, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has gained 16.7%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

Euro slips after report that ECB staff studying revising inflation goal
The euro felt pressure after Bloomberg Television reported that the staff of the European Central Bank was studying whether to revise its inflation target, which currently is below, but close to, 2% over the medium term. The euro was trading at $1.1207, vs $1.1230 before the report.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 18, 2019

UnitedHealth lifts 2019 profit forecast after topping second-quarter estimates
UnitedHealth said it was lifting its 2019 profit outlook after reporting second-quarter earnings of $3.29 billion, or $3.42 a share, an increase from $2.92 billion, or $2.98 a share, in the year-earlier period. Revenue rose to $60.59 billion from $56.09 billion, which the company attributed to led by double-digit percentage revenue growth at UnitedHealthcare Medicare & Retirement, OptumRx and OptumHealth. On an adjusted measure, the company said it earned $3.60 a share, helped by the deferral of the health insurance tax. Analysts polled by FactSet expected earnings of $3.45 a share on revenue of $60.55 billion. The company said it was lifting its full-year adjusted EPS forecast to a range of $14.70 to $14.90, against analyst expectations of $14.70.

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Jul 18, 2019

Boeing planes vulnerable to cellphone interference: report
Potentially hundreds of Boeing 737 and 777 planes worldwide are flying with unsafe systems vulnerable to passenger cellphones, Bloomberg News reported, citing a 2014 Federal Aviation Administration safety bulletin. The display units vulnerable to interference were made by Honeywell International , which says it is only aware of one case where all six display units in a 737 went blank, which was caused by a software problem that has been fixed and been flight tested. Boeing found the interference only in a lab test in 2012, the report said.

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Jul 18, 2019

European stocks decline, with SAP down after reporting trade fallout
European stocks traded lower on Thursday, with the German DAX down 0.8% as SAP reported that trade tensions weighed on its second-quarter results. Those tensions remained in focus as The Wall Street Journal reported that progress on U.S.-China talks were stalled over how to handle the Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei. There were some gainers after earnings news, with Ubisoft Entertainment , easyJet and Novartis all gaining ground.

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Jul 17, 2019

United Rentals stock drops after company tops views, trims guidance
Shares of United Rentals Inc. fell more than 5% in the extended session Wednesday after the company reported second-quarter profits above Wall Street expectations but trimmed the top of its guidance range for the year. United Rentals said it earned $270 million, or $3.44 a share, in the quarter, compared with $270 million, or $3.20 a share, in the year-ago period. Adjusted for one-time items, United earned $4.74 a share, it said. Revenue rose 21% to $2.3 billion, the company said. Analysts polled by FactSet had expected United Rentals to report adjusted earnings of $4.42 a share on sales of $2.3 billion. United said it expects 2019 revenue between $9.15 billion and $9.45 billion, versus a prior guidance of $9.15 billion and $9.55 billion. The update reflects a "historically bad weather in several key regions this past quarter," the company said.

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Jul 17, 2019

Alcoa posts narrower-than-expected Q2 loss
Alcoa Corp. shares fell more than 1% before turning modestly higher in the extended session Wednesday following a second-quarter loss for the aluminium and alumina producer. The company continued to predict an aluminium deficit and an alumina surplus for 2019. Alcoa said it lost $402 million, or $2.17 a share, in the quarter, versus earnings of $10 million, or 5 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Adjusted for one-time items, the company lost $2 million, or a penny a share, versus earnings of $1.17 a share a year ago. Revenue fell to $2.7 billion from $3.6 billion a year ago. Analysts polled by FactSet had expected an adjusted loss of 19 cents a share on sales of $2.7 billion. Alcoa said that global aluminum demand growth for 2019 is estimated to range between 1.25% and 2.25%, down from previous expectations of 2% to 3%, thanks to lower demand in both China and the world ex-China due to trade tensions and macroeconomic headwinds. Alcoa shares ended the regular trading day down 0.7%.

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Jul 17, 2019

Stocks book back-to-back losses; Dow transports tumble 3.6% as CSX shares plunge
U.S. stocks finished lower Wednesday, extending losses into the close of trade, adding to a drop spurred by President Trump's downbeat comments on China trade negotiations. A report from the Federal Reserve's Beige Book, also reinforced fears that trade worries remain a top concern, even as the economy continues to chug along. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 115 points, or about 0.4% to 27,220. The S&P 500 lost about 20 points, or 0.7%, to close at 2,984. The Nasdaq fell more nearly 40 points, or 0.5%, touching 8,185. Investors digested another round of corporate earnings, including better-than-expected results from Bank of America Corp. . Government data on the pace of new-home construction was weaker than economists had expected. Separately, the Dow Jones Transportation Average finished down 3.6% weighed by rail transport-services company CSX Corp. whose CEO said that the current economic environment was the most 'puzzling' of his career.

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Jul 17, 2019

Stocks close lower for second-straight day
U.S. stocks traded lower Wednesday, extending losses into the close of trade, following Tuesday losses driven by President Trump's downbeat comments on China trade negotiations. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down more than 100 points, or about 0.3% to 27,219. The S&P 500 lost about 19 points, or 0.6%, to close at 2,984. The Nasdaq fell more than 30 points, or .4%, touching 8,185. Investors digested another round of corporate earnings, including better-than-expected results from Bank of America Corp. . Government data on the pace of new-home construction was weaker than economists had expected.

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Jul 17, 2019

Oil prices end lower as U.S. crude supplies fall less than expected and product stocks climb
Oil futures ended with a loss on Wednesday, with U.S. prices at their lowest in about two weeks, as U.S. crude supplies posted a smaller-than-expected weekly decline and stockpiles of gasoline and distillates saw sizable gains. August West Texas Intermediate oil lost 84 cents, or 1.5%, to settle at $56.78 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. That was the lowest front-month contract finish since July 2, according to FactSet data.

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Jul 17, 2019

Victoria's Secret is losing Instagram 'likes' to competitors
Victoria's Secret is losing its likes, according to UBS analysts, who conducted a social media analysis of a number of apparel brands. The data shows that the L Brands Inc. lingerie brand saw its Instagram "likes" fall 34% year-over-year. Meanwhile, American Eagle Outfitters Inc.'s Aerie gained steam, as did a few other lesser-known brands. "For example, Fashion Nova, an apparel retailer which posts similar type of imagery as Victoria's Secret does, has made exceptional gains on Instagram," UBS said, noting that Fashion Nova had 37 million likes in June. "We think the market would be surprised to learn Fashion Nova generated more likes than any other brand or retailer we track in this study." Rapper Cardi B has a collection with Fashion Nova. Victoria's Secret, which has fallen out of favor, has struggled to get back on trend. L Brands stock is up 3% for the year to date while American Eagle Outfitters has fallen 6.7% and the S&P 500 index has gained 19.6%.

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Jul 17, 2019

Gold prices settle at a more than 6-year high
Gold futures climbed Wednesday to settle at their highest since May 2013, finding support from weakness in the dollar and expectations that the Federal Reserve will cut key interest rates later this month. "The dollar has eased back a little...allowing buck-denominated gold and silver to break further higher," said Fawad Razaqzada, technical analyst at Forex.com. "As well as a weaker dollar, these precious metals have found support from safe haven flows amid weakness on Wall Street, where positive bank earnings have failed to keep the indices at record levels." Traders await the Fed's Beige Book analysis of economic activity, due out shortly for further indications of the central bank's plan for interest rates. August gold rose $12.10, or 0.9%, to settle at $1,423.30 on Comex. That was the highest finish for a most-active contract since mid-May 2013, according to FactSet data.

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Jul 17, 2019

Corning board approves $5 billion share buyback
Corning Inc. said Wednesday its board has approved a stock buyback program of up to $5 billion. The company, which makes glass products for a range of industries, said the board has also declared a quarterly dividend of 20 cents a share. The dividend will be payable Sept. 30 to shareholders of record s of Aug. 30. The company said the shareholder rewards are part of a Strategy and Growth Framework announced at an investor meeting last month. Shares were down 1.1%, but have gained 9.1% in 2019, while the S&P 500 has gained 19.8%.

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Jul 17, 2019

Nu Skin shares plummet, stock downgraded after guidance slashed
Nu Skin Enterprises Inc. stock plummeted 16.4% in Wednesday trading after the health, wellness and beauty company cut its guidance due to problems in the Chinese market. Nu Skin was also downgraded to neutral from buy at D.A. Davidson after the news. Nu Skin now expects second-quarter revenue of $622 million to $623 million, below the $630 million FactSet consensus. Earnings per share are expected to be 82 cents to 84 cents. The FactSet consensus is for 84 cents. "We are adjusting our guidance for the year primarily due to a reduced revenue outlook in Mainland China following the government's 100-day campaign to review and inspect the health products and direct selling industries," said Nu Skin Chief Executive Ritch Wood in a statement."Continued restrictions on sales meetings, as well as media scrutiny, have negatively impacted consumer sentiment and contributed to this adjustment." D.A. Davidson notes that China revenue accounted for 33% of Nu Skin's 2018 total. Analysts slashed the price target by $50, bringing it down to $38 from $88. However, they are bullish for the long term; they expect the dividend to be safe and think the company will make an adjustment if its meetings continue to be curtailed. "If the meeting ban continues for a long period of time, we think Nu Skin could develop alternative methods to lessen the magnitude of sales declines," analysts said. Stifel analysts also cut their Nu Skin price target to $37 from $45 and maintained their sell stock rating. Nu Skin stock has fallen nearly 50% over the last year while the S&P 500 index has gained 6.6%.

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Jul 17, 2019

Facebook faces more scrutiny on Day 2 of Libra hearings
Facebook Inc.'s cryptocurrency project is being met with more skepticism from the House Financial Services committee on Wednesday, a day after the Senate Banking Committee questioned the wisdom of entrusting the social-media giant with personal financial information, and its ability to police such a system. "I don't think you should launch Libra at all," Rep. Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., said, echoing the mood of some members from each party. The Libra project has been roundly criticized by everyone from President Donald Trump to Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif.

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Jul 17, 2019

Uber Eats and other third-party delivery services take a bite out of Domino's Pizza
Domino's Pizza Inc. Chief Executive Richard Allison said third-party delivery services like DoorDash and Uber Eats were a challenge during the second-quarter, and they aren't going away. "Our same-store sales performance for the quarter came in toward the lower end of our three-to-five-year outlook as we continue to navigate through headwinds related to aggressive activity from third-party aggregators," he said, according to a FactSet transcript. "I do not expect this activity to ease in the near term." Domino's reported a second-quarter revenue miss and same-store sales growth that missed expectations. "Domino's Pizza remains on the 'Biggest Concerns List' from CFRA Forensic Research Services, partly on sales and profit margin pressures and reduced operating leverage," wrote CFRA's Tuna Amobi in a note. CFRA maintained its hold opinion on Domino's stock but cut its price target to $270 from $290. BTIG remains bullish. "We maintain our buy rating on shares of Domino's Pizza following earnings as we believe the retail sales and market share gains the concept is generating will ultimately translate into a higher stock price," wrote analysts led by Peter Saleh. "While disappointed with domestic same-store sales results this quarter, new unit and retail sales growth remains healthy and we believe the stock's decline is more a function of elevated expectations rather than inflated valuation." BTIG cut its price target to $325 from $335. Domino's Pizza shares closed Tuesday down 8.7%, but are nearly unchanged in Wednesday trading. The stock has fallen 12.5% over the last year while the S&P 500 index has gained 6.6% for the period.

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Jul 17, 2019

EIA reports a fifth straight weekly fall in U.S. crude-oil supplies
The Energy Information Administration on Wednesday reported that U.S. crude supplies fell for a fifth consecutive week, but by less than the market expected. Crude stockpiles were down 3.1 million barrels for the week ended July 12. They were forecast to fall by 4.2 million barrels, according to analysts polled by S&P Global Platts. The American Petroleum Institute on Tuesday reported a decline of 1.4 million barrels, according to sources. The EIA data showed that gasoline inventories climbed by 3.6 million barrels, while distillate stockpiles increased by 5.7 million barrels last week. The S&P Global Platts survey revealed expectations for a supply decline of 1.5 million barrels for gasoline and an increase of 300,000 barrels for distillates. August West Texas Intermediate crude was up 24 cents, or 0.4%, to $57.86 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Prices were trading at $57.83 before the supply data.

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Jul 17, 2019

Goldman Sachs downgrades Levi Strauss, Ralph Lauren and Calvin Klein parent PVH on department store concerns
Concerns about the wholesale channel sparked downgrades of Levi Strauss & Co. , Ralph Lauren Corp , and Calvin Klein parent PVH Corp. at Goldman Sachs. The downgrades sent each of the apparel stocks down, with Levi Strauss tumbling 4%, Ralph Lauren falling 3.7% and PVH down 3.4% in Wednesday trading. Goldman expects headwinds for the wholesale channel to ramp up in the second half of the year. "The combination of persistently tough first-half retail trends and an optimistic spring ordering season has driven inventory overhangs at several multibrand retailers," the Goldman note said. "These retailers are thus tightening up ordering as we head into the critical back-to-school and holiday season. We thus see incremental sell-in risk for apparel brands, particularly those with high exposure to department stores." Goldman expects growth at PVH's Tommy Hilfiger brand to "fade," thinks Ralph Lauren's wholesale troubles will be amplified by brand challenges at Polo and Lauren, and is worried that growth in Levi's tops business will decline. Levi stock is down 19% over the last three months, Ralph Lauren is down nearly 16%, and PVH is down 32.2%. The ProShares Decline of the Retail Store ETF has climbed nearly 11% over the last three months and the S&P 500 index has gained 3.5% for the period.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 17, 2019

Dow slips and the stock market treads water at the open as investors digest earnings from B.of A.
U.S. stock indexes tread water at the start of trading Wednesday, with investors finding few reasons to take benchmarks further into record territory, amid a round of earnings from U.S. corporations. The Dow Jones Industrial Average edged 17 points, or less than 0.1%, lower at 27,316, the S&P 500 index retreated less than 0.1% at 3,003, while the Nasdaq Composite Index inched less than 0.1% lower at 8,224. Bank of America reported better-than-expected results, with earnings per share for the quarter at 74 cents, compared with estimates for 71 cents. But expectations for lower profits, in an environment of falling interest rates, have put some pressure on shares of the second-largest bank by assets. Meanwhile, shares of CSX Corp. were down after the rail company cut its full-year sales projections, citing economic uncertainty and a recent shutdown of a major oil refinery it served.

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Jul 17, 2019

Apple to test out some AirPods production in Vietnam: report
Apple Inc. plans to start trial production of its AirPods product in Vietnam, according to a new report from the Nikkei Asian Review, as it looks to reduce its dependence on Chinese manufacturing. One of the company's contract manufacturers will start testing its production processing for the next iteration of AirPods at a Vietnam facility, said the report, which cites multiple anonymous sources, though the initial trials would be very small. Apple declined to comment in the Nikkei Asian Review's story. Its shares are down 0.3% in Wednesday trading. They've gained 29% so far this year, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average has risen 17%.

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Jul 17, 2019

Amazon Prime Day sales surpass Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined
Amazon.com Inc. said Wednesday that this year's two-day Prime Day shopping event was the biggest shopping event in the company's history, surpassing Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined. More than 175 million items were purchased, with the event becoming the largest-ever for Amazon devices, including the Echo Dot and Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote. Prime members also bought 100,000 lunchboxes, 100,000 laptops, 350,000 luxury beauty products, and more than one million toys. Amazon says Prime members around the world saved more than $1 billion. Eighteen countries participated this year. And Amazon reports it signed up the most new Prime members ever on July 15 and nearly as many on July 16. Amazon stock has gained 33.6% in 2019 while the S&P 500 index is up nearly 20% for the period.

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Jul 17, 2019

Tencent-backed DouYu prices IPO at $11.50 to raise $775 million: Reuters
Tencent-backed live-streaming company DouYu International Holdings Ltd. priced its initial public offering at $11.50 per American Depositary Share, the low end of its $11.50 to $14.00 price range, Reuters reported. The company sold 67.4 million ADS to raise $775 million, according to Reuters. It has applied to list on Nasdaq, under the ticker symbol "DOYU. Every 10 ADS is equal to one ordinary share.

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Jul 17, 2019

Gilead's Chief Scientific Officer to leave next month
Gilead Sciences Inc's Chief Scientific Officer John McHutchison will leave the company next month, the company announced Wednesday. McHutchison, who is also Gilead's head of research and development, joined the pharmaceutical giant in 2010 and was named chief scientific officer in March 2018. During his time at Gilead, he oversaw the development of several hepatitis B and C treatments, as well as the company's expansion into oncology with the development of Zydelig. Gilead also announced other changes to its senior leadership team: Chief Patient Officer Greg Alton and Executive Vice President of Human Resources Katie Watson will be leaving, as well. Jyoti Mehra, currently vice president of human resources, will take Watson's place. Shares of Gilead fell 0.4% in premarket trade on the news. The stock has gained 7% in the year to date through Tuesday, while the S&P 500 has gained 19.8%.

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Jul 17, 2019

Cannabis company Curaleaf to buy GR Cos. in a cash and stock deal valued at $875 million
Massachusetts-based cannabis company Curaleaf Holdings Inc. said Wednesday it was buying multi-state operator GR Companies Inc. in a deal valued at $875 million in cash and stock. Under terms of the deal, Curaleaf will pay $75 million in cash and provide 102.8 million subordinate voting shares and $40 million worth of shares. The acquisition, which is expected to close in early 2020, will increase Curaleaf's presence to 19 states from 12, including Illinois, which legalized adult-use cannabis in June. The combined company will have 131 dispensary licences, 68 operational locations, 20 cultivation sites and 26 processing facilities. Curaleaf's U.S.-listed shares have tumbled 35.1% over the past three months, while the ETFMG Alternative Harvest ETF has lost 11.7% and the S&P 500 has gained 3.6%.

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Jul 17, 2019

Ladenburg Thalmann initiates coverage of cannabis sector with buy ratings on Canopy Growth, Aurora
Ladenburg Thalmann initiated coverage of the cannabis sector on Wednesday, assigning buy ratings to market leader Canopy Growth Corp. and Aurora Cannabis Inc. , and a neutral rating to Tilray Inc. Analyst Glenn Mattson said he favors Canadian companies who are focused on long-term value creation and gaining market share, along with those with clear plans to enter the U.S. market, which is expected to become the world's biggest, if and when federal laws allow it. "In the U.S. we look for companies that are building a presence in states with large populations but a limited licensing outlook," Mattson wrote in a series of notes to clients. The analyst views Canopy as a compelling investment opportunity, and said he expects it to retain its leading position in Canada--and beyond. "We believe that Canopy can replicate that effort in other markets as those markets move toward legalization," Mattson wrote. "Canopy has the most aggressive approach to capturing the U.S. market (estimated to be the world's largest potentially) through its potential acquisition of Acreage Holdings (ACRGF: $14.50, Buy)," he said. Aurora is "one of the most aggressive capacity expansion plays" in the cannabis sector, with its aim to become the low-cost provider of premium product. "While some firms are being cautious about expansion with the possibility that the Canadian market may see oversupply, Aurora is taking the view that the market for cannabis will be global and it can export to areas like Europe if the Canadian market sees saturation," he wrote. Turning to Tilray, Mattson said that company is supplying medical cannabis to patients in 15 countries and praised its brand strategy and clinical trials. But the plan of distribution of its big shareholder Privateer will create an overhang on the stock that Mattson expects will weigh for some time. "It remains to be seen what kind of traction TLRY will have with CBD in the U.S. and until then we don't believe an established organic food

MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 17, 2019

Kohl's to hire thousands of workers for new stores, back-to-school, and more
Kohl's Corp. said Wednesday that it will hire thousands of workers for positions across the country. About 3,000 associates will be brought on for customer service and omnichannel positions. The retailer will also add seasonal associates, starting this summer to help with the back-to-school shopping season and staying on through the holidays. There are also summer seasonal positions that will start in August spanning across nine distribution centers and five e-commerce fulfillment centers. Up to 50 seasonal positions are open at "omni power centers" located within stores. These workers will help fill digital orders from stores. Finally, Kohl's has five new stores opening in Minnesota, New York, Kentucky, Pennsylvania and Colorado in need of full- and part-time workers. Kohl's stock has taken a 25% tumble in 2019 while the S&P 500 index is up nearly 20%.

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Jul 17, 2019

Comerica's stock falls after profit and NII miss, downbeat outlook
Shares of Comerica Inc. dropped 2.0% in premarket trading Wednesday, after the Texas-based regional bank reported a second-quarter profit and net interest income (NII) that missed expectations, and provided a downbeat NII outlook. Net income was $298 million, or $1.94 a share, after earnings of $326 million, or $1.87 a share, in the year-ago period. Adjusted EPS rose to $1.94 from $1.90, but was below the FactSet consensus of $2.00. NII increased to $603 million from $590 million, but missed the FactSet consensus of $609 million, as an increase in deposit costs and higher levels of funding to support loan growth offset an increase in average loans and an additional day in this year's quarter. For 2019, the company NII growth of 2%, while the FactSet consensus of $2.42 billion implies 2.8% growth. The stock has shed 9.5% over the past three months, while the SPDR S&P Regional Banking ETF has slipped 3.8% and the S&P 500 has gained 3.6%.

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Jul 17, 2019

Abbott stock rises after earnings beat, full-year guidance boost
Shares of Abbott Laboratories gained 0.8% in premarket trade Wednesday after the medical-device maker reported second-quarter earnings that topped Wall Street expectations and raised full-year guidance, though the company missed expectations for revenue. Profit for the latest quarter rose to $1.465 billion, or 56 cents a share, from $733 million, or 41 cents a share, from the year-earlier quarter. Adjusted EPS was 82 cents, topping the FactSet consensus of 80 cents. Revenue rose 2.7% to $7.979 billion from $7.767 billion a year ago. Analysts polled by FactSet had expected $7.997 billion in sales. Sales of the company's nutrition unit rose 0.9% to $1.875 billion, while the diagnostics sales rose 1.7% to $1.905 billion. Sales of the established pharmaceuticals business fell 1.8% to $1.108 billion, while sales of the medical devices unit rose 6.4% to $3.075 billion, boosted by strong sales of the company's FreeStyle Libre glucose monitoring system and MitraClip. Abbott raised its full-year EPS to between $3.21 and $3.27 from between $3.15 and $3.25. "Our sales growth accelerated and is sustainable," Abbott's Chief Executive Miles D. White said in a statement. "We have great momentum and are raising our guidance above the strong outlook we previously set for the year." Shares of Abbott have gained 15% so far this year through Tuesday, while the S&P 500 has gained 19.8%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 17, 2019

Penske Automotive raises quarterly cash dividend to 40 cents a share vs. 37.5 cents
Penske Automotive Group Inc. said Wednesday its board has agreed to increase its quarterly cash dividend to 40 cents a share. The current dividend is 37.5 cents a share, according to FactSet. The new dividend is payable Sept. 4 to shareholders of record as of Aug. 9. Shares were not active premarket, but have gained 11.7% in 2019, while the S&P 500 has gained 19.8%.

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Jul 17, 2019

Merck stock up slightly after FDA approves Recarbrio for new indication
Shares of Merck & Co Inc. ticked up 0.5% in premarket trade Wednesday after the company said the U.S. Food and Drug Administration had approved its antibacterial Recarbrio injection for use in treating complicated urinary tract infections. The drug is also approved for use in adult patients who have limited options for the treatment of complicated intra-abdominal infections caused by certain bacteria. Merck said it expects to make the drug available later this year. Shares of Merck have gained 6.8% so far this year through Wednesday, while the S&P 500 has gained 19.8%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 17, 2019

Bank of America plans to boost dividend 20%, increase pace of stock buybacks
Bank of America Corp. announced Wednesday a plan to return $37 billion to shareholders over the next 12 months, through share repurchases and dividends. As part of that plan, the money-center bank said it plans to increase the quarterly dividend by 20%. Based on Tuesday's stock closing price of $28.99 and the current dividend of 15 cents a share, a 20% increase would imply a quarterly dividend of 18 cents a share, an annual dividend rate of 72 cents a share and a dividend yield of 2.48%. That's above the implied yield for the SPDR Financial Select Sector ETF of 1.95% and for the S&P 500 of 1.93%. The plan also includes more than $30 billion in gross stock buybacks, which represents more than 10.9% of the shares outstanding. That would be an increase from the past 12 months, in which the bank repurchased 7% of its shares outstanding. BofA's stock fell 0.3% in premarket trading, after the bank reported second-quarter earnings that topped expectations but revenue that came up a bit short.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 17, 2019

Bank of America's stock falls after profit beats but revenue comes up a bit short
Shares of Bank of America Corp. dropped 0.7% in premarket trading Wednesday, after the bank reported a second-quarter profit that beat expectations but revenue that came up a bit short. Net income rose to $7.11 billion, or 74 or cents a share, from $6.47 billion, or 63 cents a share, in the same period a year ago. The FactSet consensus for earnings per share was 71 cents. Total revenue increased 2.4% to $23.08 billion, just below the FactSet consensus of $23.11 billion, while net interest income rose 3.1% to $12.19 billion but missed expectations of $12.36 billion. Consumer banking revenue grew 5.2% to $9.72 billion, while the range of two analysts surveyed by FactSet was $9.61 billion to $9.64 billion. Global markets revenue fell 2.5% to $4.15 billion, as sales and trading revenue declined 6% to $3.2 billion. Elsewhere, global banking revenue declined 0.8% to $4.98 billion and global wealth and investment management revenue increased 3.3% to $4.90 billion. The stock has run up 17.7% year to date through Tuesday, while the SPDR Financial Select Sector ETF has climbed 17.9% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average has hiked up 17.2%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

Justice Department backs Qualcomm's bid to halt enforcement of antitrust ruling
The U.S. Justice Department is siding with Qualcomm Inc. in its bid to hold off enforcement of an antitrust ruling against the chip maker during its appeals process, arguing that the company is important to national security. In documents filed Tuesday, the Justice Department said the district court's ruling "threatens competition, innovation and national security." In a related filing, Ellen Lord, the Defense Department's under secretary for acquisition and sustainment, said "Qualcomm is a key player both in terms of its trusted supply chain and as a leader in innovation, and it would be impossible to replace Qualcomm's critical role in 5G technology in the short term." In May, a federal judge sided with the Federal Trade Commission in ruling that Qualcomm had broken antitrust law through licensing practices that "strangled competition." The San Diego-based company immediately filed an appeal seeking a stay of enforcement, arguing that the ruling would force it to change its business model, which would be too difficult to unwind if the ruling was eventually overturned on appeal.

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Jul 16, 2019

Nu Skin stock falls after outlook cut on China sales
Nu Skin Enterprises Inc. shares fell in the extended session Tuesday after the beauty and wellness products maker cut its outlook. Nu Skin shares fell 14% after hours, following a 3.4% rise to close the regular session at $45.51. The company forecast earnings of 82 cents to 84 cents a share on revenue of $622 million to $623 million for the second quarter, and $3.20 to $3.25 a share on revenue of $2.48 billion to $2.52 billion for the year. Analysts surveyed by FactSet had estimated earnings of 93 cents a share on revenue of $672.5 million for the second quarter, and $3.94 a share on revenue of $2.77 billion for the year. "We are adjusting our guidance for the year primarily due to a reduced revenue outlook in Mainland China following the government's 100-day campaign to review and inspect the health products and direct selling industries," said Nu Skin Chief Executive Ritch Wood in a statement. "Continued restrictions on sales meetings, as well as media scrutiny, have negatively impacted consumer sentiment and contributed to this adjustment."

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Jul 16, 2019

API data reportedly show a 1.4 million-barrel decline in U.S. crude stocks
The American Petroleum Institute reported late Tuesday that U.S. crude supplies fell by 1.4 million barrels for the week ended July 12, according to sources. The API also reportedly showed a stockpile decline of 476,000 barrels for gasoline, but distillate inventories jumped by 6.2 million barrels. Inventory data from the Energy Information Administration will be released Wednesday. The EIA data are expected to show crude inventories down by 4.2 million barrels last week, according to analysts polled by S&P Global Platts. They also forecast a fall of 1.5 million barrels for gasoline and an increase of 300,000 barrels for distillate supplies. August West Texas Intermediate crude was at $57.50 a barrel in electronic trading, down from the contract's $57.62 settlement on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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Jul 16, 2019

United Airlines parent beats Q2 earnings expectations, stock rises
Shares of United Airlines Holdings Inc. rose more than 1% in the extended session Tuesday after the parent of United Airlines reported better-than-expected second-quarter earnings. United said it earned $1.1 billion, or $4.02 a share, in the quarter, compared with $888 million, or $2.48 a share, in the year-ago quarter. Adjusted for one-time earnings, United earned $1.1 billion, or $4.21 a share, compared with $3.22 a year ago. Analysts polled by FactSet had expected United to report an adjusted EPS of $4.12 for the quarter. Revenue reached $11.4 billion, in line with analyst expectations and compared with $10.8 billion a year ago. In the same statement, United said its board authorized a new $3 billion stock buyback program. The shares had ended the regular trading day up 2.9%.

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Jul 16, 2019

CSX stock falls after earnings miss
CSX Corp. shares dropped in the extended session Tuesday after the railroad operator's quarterly results fell short of Wall Street estimates. CSX shares fell 5.5% after hours, following a 1.3% rise to close the regular session at $79.55. The company reported second-quarter net income of $870 million, or $1.08 a share, compared with $877 million, or $1.01 a share, in the year-ago period. Revenue declined to $3.06 billion from $3.1 billion in the year-ago quarter. Analysts surveyed by FactSet had forecast earnings of $1.11 a share on revenue of $3.14 billion.

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Jul 16, 2019

Dow snaps 4-day win streak, narrowly misses longest string of records in 1 1/2 years
The three major U.S. stock benchmarks snapped a multisession win streak on Tuesday as President Donald Trump said an agreement with China on trade tariffs had "a long way to go," and a trio of the U.S.'s largest banks reported quarterly results. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down by about 24 points, or less than 0.1%, at 27,336, ending four straight days of gains. If the Dow had finished in positive territory, it would have marked the longest streak of records for the blue-chip index since Dec. 13, 2017, according to Dow Jones Market Data. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 closed off 0.3% at 3,004, halting a 5-day win streak and the Nasdaq Composite Index finished down 0.4% at 8,222, ending its string of gains at two. All three benchmarks closed at records on Monday. Investors digested earnings JPMorgan Chase & Co. , Goldman Sachs , and Wells Fargo & Co. , which delivered on lowered expectations but came as the Federal Reserve was expected to lower rates, currently at a range of 2.25%-2.50% at the end of July to combat the effects of tariff conflicts between the U.S. and China. Banks tend to benefit from a higher-rate environment because the institutions borrow over a short-term basis and lend over a longer term. JPMorgan, for one, said that it was lowering its forecast for net interest margin, which helped to put pressure on its shares. Goldman's stock, however, rose 1.9%, as the investment bank surprised by beating analysts' average estimates firmly on profit and revenue. On the economic front, June retail sales rose 0.4% compared against May, coming in ahead of the 0.1% gain expected by economists polled by MarketWatch. Still, Dallas Federal Reserve chief Robert Kaplan also said Tuesday that inflation is likely to remain low because of the vast changes new technologies have had on wages and prices.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

More than half of Gulf of Mexico oil production remains offline after Hurricane Barry
Oil production in the Gulf of Mexico improved for a second straight day on Tuesday, but more than half remained offline. About 58% of Gulf oil production and 51% of natural-gas production has been shut in, according to the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement. That marks an improvement from Monday, when 69% of oil and nearly 61% of natural-gas output was down. August West Texas Intermediate oil traded down $2.32, or 3.9%, at $57.26 a barrel after U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reportedly said that Iran is ready to talk about its missile program. August natural gas shed 10.1 cents, or 4.2%, to $2.308 per million British thermal units.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

Oil prices move sharply lower as Pompeo calms worries about Iran
Oil futures moved sharply lower Tuesday afternoon as comments from U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo eased worries about supply risks tied to Iran. Pompeo said Iran is ready to negotiate on the missile program, according to Bloomberg. August West Texas Intermediate oil lost $1.10, or 1.9%, to $58.48 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange after touching an intraday high of $60.06. September Brent crude traded at $65.45 a barrel, down $1.03, or 1.5%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

Stock market sinks to session low as Trump says there's 'a long way to go' on China trade deal
U.S. stock indexes Tuesday midday were trading near session lows, though only modestly lower, after President Donald Trump described progress toward a China and U.S. tariff pact as "a long way to go" to reporters. Trump made his comments during a cabinet meeting at the White House, with reporters in attendance. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added to modest losses, and was recently trading down 46 points, or 0.2%, at 27,313, but had been as low as 27,296. The S&P 500 index declined 0.3% at 3,004, near its intraday low at 3,002.55, while the Nasdaq Composite Index was 0.5% lower at 8,217, after touching a session nadir at 8,212.14. All that said, all three benchmarks finished at records on Monday, with expectations growing that the Federal Reserve will ease monetary policy, providing further support for stocks to climb. However, trade disputes between the U.S. and its international counterparts, notably Beijing, have been at the center of investors' concerns and the chief reason the Fed is said to be considering a pre-emptive rate cut, even though most of the domestic economy remains healthy.

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Jul 16, 2019

Christine Lagarde -- in line to head ECB -- steps down as IMF managing director
Christine Lagarde announced Tuesday that she has resigned as managing director of the International Monetary Fund, effective from Sept. 12. Lagarde is set to take over as president of the European Central Bank on Nov. 1. In a separate statement, the IMF executive board said it had accepted Lagarde's resignation. David Lipton will remain the acting managing director of the IMF during a search for a new leader. There has been speculation that Bank of England governor Mark Carney might replace Lagarde. In addition, George Osborne, the former chancellor of the UK exchequer and Bulgaria's Kristalina Georgieava, the No. 2 at the World Bank, have been mentioned in various news reports. Since 1945, the IMF managing director has been from Europe.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

Roku stock hits new all-time high
Roku Inc. shares hit an new all-time high in intraday trading Tuesday, extending a massive year-to-date rally for the stock. Shares climbed as much as 5.9% in the session, reaching a price of $110.46 before giving back some of their gains. They were recently up 5.1%, to $109.65. The company is projected to report second-quarter results on or about Aug. 7, according to FactSet, with the streaming platform for TV expected to report a loss of 22 cents a share after a breakeven quarter a year ago, while revenue is forecast to grow 43% to $223.9 million. Roku's stock has rocketed 259% so far this year, while the S&P 500 has gained 20%.

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Jul 16, 2019

Wells Fargo's dividend hike to boost yield to more than double peers, S&P 500
Wells Fargo & Co.'s expected dividend increase would boost its implied dividend yield to more than double its financial-sector peers and the broader stock market. Wells Fargo said in its second-quarter report that after receiving a "non-objection" to its capital plan submission from the Federal Reserve, the bank expects to raised its quarterly dividend by 13% to 51 cents a share from the current rate of 45 cents a share. Based on current stock prices--down 0.3% at $46.59--the new annual dividend rate of $2.04 would imply a dividend yield of 4.38%. That compares with the current implied dividend yields of 1.94% for the SPDR Financial Select Sector ETF and the S&P 500's implied yield of 1.92%, according to FactSet. Wells' stock has lost 18.1% over the past 12 months, while the financial ETF has gained 2.7% and the S&P 500 has advanced 7.7%.

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Jul 16, 2019

U.S. business inventories increase 0.3% in May
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - Business inventories in the U.S. rose 0.3% in May, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. Sales rose 0.2% in the month. The ratio of inventories to sales, meanwhile, was unchanged at 1.39. That's how many months it would take to sell all the inventory on hand. One year ago, the inventory-to-sales ratio was 1.34. An increase in inventories adds to gross domestic product while a decrease subtracts from it. The increase in inventories in May was also unchanged at 0.5%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

Goldman's stock rally helps keep Dow positive
Shares of Goldman Sachs Group Inc. surged 2.3% in morning trading after big second-quarter profit and revenue beats, with the price gain enough to keep the Dow Jones Industrial Average in positive territory. The stock rose $4.88, which would add about 33 points to the Dow's price, which is up 7 points. For the other Dow earnings reporters, J.P. Morgan Chase & Co.'s stock slipped 41 cents, or 0.4%, and Johnson & Johnson shares gave up $1.60, or 1.2%; combined, those declines would shave about 14 points off the Dow's price.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

Stocks pull back from record levels as earnings season picks up steam
Stocks got off to a slightly lower start Tuesday as investors digested a stream of earnings reports, including results from Dow components Johnson & Johnson and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. . The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell around 7 points, or less than 0.1%, to 27,352, while the S&P 500 was off 0.1% at 3,011.12. The Nasdaq Composite fell 0.1% to 8,245.28. All three major indexes eked out record finished in subdued trading on Monday. Shares of Goldman Sachs were up 0.9%, while Johnson & Johnson shares fell 1.7%. Both companies topped earnings forecasts.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

Ebay launches 'Crash Sale' deals after reports of Amazon Prime Day glitches
Ebay Inc. has launched its promised "Crash Sale" after media reports of glitches during the first day of the Prime Day shopping event. The "Crash Sale" offered discounts based on whether Amazon had a repeat of last year's technical difficulties. Among the items included in the Crash Sale are the PlayStation 4, a Gourmia pressure cooker, and a Fjallraven backpack. Ebay has used this year's Prime Day as an opportunity to take shots at the e-commerce giant. Amazon.com Inc. says the Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote, Echo Dot, Instant Pot DUO Plus 60 and LifeStraw Personal Water Filter have been among its bestsellers so far. Ebay stock has rallied 43.5% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index is up 20.2% for the period.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

J.P. Morgan cuts NII outlook as rate outlook swings to 3 cuts from zero in 3 months
J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. lowered its full-year outlook on net interest income, as the banking giant now assumes the Federal Reserve will cut interest rates up to three times this year. Chief Financial Officer Jennifer Piepszak said on the post-earnings conference call that net interest income is now expected to be $57.5 billion, according to a transcript provided by FactSet, compared with the FactSet consensus of $57.9 billion. In the first-quarter conference call, then-CFO Marianne Lake said NII was expected to be "$58-plus-billion," when the it was assumed that there would be zero interest rate cuts. The stock was last down 0.4% in premarket trading, but has been up as much as 1.3% and down as much as 2.1% after earnings were reported. It has climbed 16.7% year to date through Monday, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has climbed 17.3%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

Lear's stock sinks after cutting full-year guidance as industry volumes continue to decline
Shares of Lear Corp. sank 7.6% in premarket trading Tuesday, after the automotive electrical systems company cut its full-year outlook, citing continued declines in industry production volumes and macroeconomic headwinds. The company cut its 2019 sales guidance to $19.8 billion to $20.3 billion from $20.9 billion to $21.7 billion, its adjusted net income outlook to $885 million to $965 million from $1.08 billion to $1.17 billion and its free cash flow guidance range to $675 million to $775 million from $850 million to $950 million. Core operating earnings are now expected to be $1.35 billion to $1.45 billion, down from previous guidance of $1.60 billion to $1.70 billion. "Previously, we indicated that we anticipated an increase in industry production volumes in the second half of the year and an associated improvement in sales and earnings," said Chief Executive Ray Scott. "We now believe general macroeconomic and industry factors will continue to put pressure on sales and earnings throughout the remainder of 2019." The company expects to increase its restructuring program by $60 million to $200 million. The stock has shed 13.3% over the past three months, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has gained 3.4%.

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Jul 16, 2019

Moody's to sell Moody's Analytics unit to PE firm Equistone, sees up to 20 cents hit to 2019 EPS
Moody's Corp. said Tuesday it has agreed to sell its Moody's Analytics Knowledge Services business to Equistone Partners Europe Ltd, a private-equity firm. Moody's did not disclose terms, but said it expects the deal to shave up to 20 cents off 2019 per-share earnings. The deal is expected to close later this year. The unit offer research and analytical support to organizations across the globe, including banks, asset managers and consulting firms. Moody's will use the proceeds of the deal to repurchase about $300 million of its shares. Shares were not active premarket, but have gained 46.4% in 2019, while the S&P 500 has gained 20.2%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

Blue Apron shares jump after Beyond Meat recipes announced
Blue Apron Holdings Inc. shares jumped nearly 6% in Tuesday premarket trading after the meal-kit company announced seasonal recipes that will include plant-based proteins from Beyond Meat Inc. . Beyond Meat stock inched up 0.6%. Blue Apron x Beyond Meat recipes will become part of the two-serving plan starting in August, with the recipes available on the Blue Apron website and mobile app now. These first recipes will include the "meatier" Beyond Meat burger. Blue Apron stock has tumbled 50% in 2019 while the S&P 500 index has gained 20.2%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

J.B. Hunt's stock jumps after earnings beat, while intermodal revenue falls a bit shy
Shares of J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc. shot up 7.2% in premarket trading Tuesday, after the trucking company reported a second-quarter profit that beat expectations, while intermodal revenue fell a bit shy. Net income fell to $133.6 million, or $1.23 a share, from $151.7 million, or $1.37 a share, in the year-ago period. The results included a pre-tax charge of 14 cents a share from insurance claim costs. Excluding the charge, adjusted earnings per share of $1.37 beat expectations of $1.34, according to FactSet. Total revenue rose 5.7% to $2.26 billion, in line with the FactSet consensus. Intermodal revenue fell 1% to $1.15 billion to miss the FactSet consensus of $1.18 billion, as a "softer freight market limited the ability to offset rail network rationalization effects" in the Eastern network. The intermodal revenue decline reflected an 8% fall in volume and a 7% increase in revenue per load. The stock has slipped 0.5% year to date through Monday, while the Dow Jones Transportation Average has advanced 15.6% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average has hiked up 17.3%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

Wells Fargo earnings blow past estimates
Wells Fargo & Co. said Tuesday it had net income of $6.2 billion, or $1.30 a share, in the second quarter, up from $5.2 billion, or 98 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Revenue was unchanged at $21.6 billion. The FactSet consensus was for EPS of $1.17 and revenue of $20.9 billion. Net interest income fell to $12.1 billion from $12.5 billion. Provisions for loan losses came to $503 million, up $51 million from a year ago. Noninterest income came to $9.5 billion, up from $9.01 billion a year ago. Mortage banking income came to $758 million, down from $770 million a year ago. Shares fell 0.2% premarket and have gained 1.4% in 2019 through Monday, while the S&P 500 has gained 20.2%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

Goldman Sachs' stock surges after big profit and revenue beats, raised dividend
Shares of Goldman Sachs Group Inc. surged 1.2% in premarket trading Tuesday, after the investment bank reported second-quarter earnings and revenue that fell, but were well above expectations, and raised its dividend by 47%. Net income declined to $2.20 billion, or $5.81 a share, from $2.35 billion, or $5.98 a share, in the year-ago period. The FactSet consensus was $4.89. Total revenue fell 2% to $9.46 billion, but beat the FactSet consensus of $8.84 billion, as better-than-expected non-interest income offset a slight miss in net interest income. Institutional clients services revenue declined 2.6% to $3.48 billion, as FICC client executive revenue fell 12.5% to $1.47 billion while total equities revenue increased 6.1% to $2.01 billion. The FactSet consensus for institutional client services revenue was $3.33 billion. Investment banking revenue declined 8.9% to $1.86 billion, above the FactSet consensus of $1.77 billion, and investing and lending revenue rose 16% to $2.53 billion to top expectations of $2.00 billion. Goldman raised its quarterly dividend to $1.25 a share from 85 cents, with the new dividend to payable Sept. 27 to shareholders of record on Aug. 30. The stock has run up 26.7% year to date through Monday, while the SPDR Financial Select Sector ETF has rallied 18.2% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average has climbed 17.3%.

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Jul 16, 2019

Domino's shares sink after revenue miss
Domino's Pizza Inc. shares fell 5.7% in Tuesday premarket trading after the pizza-delivery chain reported second-quarter revenue that missed expectations. Net income totaled $92.4 million, or $2.19 per share, up from $77.4 million, or $1.78 per share, last year. Revenue of $811.6 million was up from $779.4 million last year. The FactSet consensus was for EPS of $2.02 and revenue of $837.0 million. The company said there was a decline in U.S. company-owned revenue due to the previously-announced sale of 59 locations to U.S. franchisees. U.S. company-owned same-store sales grew 2.1%, below the FactSet guidance for 3.3% growth. And U.S. franchise store same-store sales were up 3.1%, also below the 4.7% FactSet guidance. International stores experienced a 2.4% same-store sales increase, excluding the impact of foreign currency. Domino's shares have climbed 8.8% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index is up 20.2% for the period.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

Shares of J&J up 0.8% after earnings and revenue beat
Shares of Johnson & Johnson rose 0.8% in premarket trade Tuesday after the health-products giant reported second-quarter earnings and revenue that beat Wall Street expectations. Profit for the latest quarter rose to $5.607 billion, or $2.08 per share, from $3.954 billion, or $1.45 per share, a year ago. Adjusted EPS was $2.58 per share, beating the FactSet consensus of $2.46 per share. Revenue fell to $20.562 billion from $20.830 billion in the year-earlier quarter, but beat the FactSet consensus of $20.293 billion. Sales from J&J's consumer business rose to $3.544 billion from $3.504 billion a year ago, while the company's pharmaceuticals segment brought in $10.529 billion, up from $10.354 billion a year ago. J&J's medical devices business brought in $6.489 billion, down from $6.972 billion a year ago. J&J boosted its 2019 sales outlook to between $80.8 billion and $81.6 billion from between $80.4 billion and $81.2 billion. The company also reaffirmed its full-year adjusted EPS of between $8.53 and $8.63 per share. Shares of J&J have gained 4.4% in the year to date, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has gained 17.3% and the S&P 500 has gained 20.2%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

JPMorgan tops profit and revenue estimates
JPMorgan Chase & Co. said Tuesday it had net income of $9.652 billion, or $2.82 a share, in the second quarter, up from $8.316 billion, or $2.29 a share, in the year-earlier period. Revenue rose to $29.566 billion from $28.388 billion. The FactSet consensus was for EPS of $2.50 and revenue of $28.835 billion. The bank said net interest income rose 7% to $14.5 billion, driven by balance sheet growth and mix along with the benefit of higher interest rates. Non-interest income came to $15.0 billion, up 2%. Provisions for credit losses came to $1.1 billion, down 5%. Markets and securities services revenue came to $6.4 billion, down 1%. Fixed income markets revenue fell 3%, hurt weakness in EMEA, which was offset by increased client activity in North American rates and agency mortgage trading. Equity markets revenue fell 12% to $1.7 billion, driven by lower client activity in derivatives. "We continue to see positive momentum with the U.S. consumer - healthy confidence levels, solid job creation and rising wages - which are reflected in our Consumer & Community Banking results," Chief Executive Jamie Dimon said in a statement. Shares fell 1.5% premarket, but have gained 17.7% in 2019, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has gained 17.3% and the S&P 500 has gained 20.2%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

KeyCorp's stock falls after discovery of 'fraudulent activity' by customer
Shares of KeyCorp shed 2% in premarket trading Tuesday, after the regional bank disclosed that it had discovered "fraudulent activity" conducted by a business customer of its KeyBank National Association subsidiary. The bank said while it continues to investigate the activity associated with the transactions, which were conducted in the third quarter of its 2019 fiscal year, it estimates the potential exposure to the bank of up to $90 million. KeyCorp said it was working with law-enforcement authorities and believes the incident is "an isolated occurrence involving a single business relationship." The stock had gained 3.6% over the past three months through Monday, while the SPDR S&P Regional Banking ETF has declined 3.7% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average has advanced 3.4%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

Burberry Group rallies after reporting Asia-led rise in sales
Burberry Group shares rose nearly 9% in London trade as the company reported a 4% rise in comparable-store sales in the June-ending quarter. The company said that was led by a high single-digit percentage gain in the Asia Pacific region, driven by mainland China. Burberry maintained its outlook for a "broadly stable" top line and operating margin at constant exchange rates.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 16, 2019

British wages climb to 11-year high as unemployment matches 45-year low
The U.K. labor picture remained strong in May, according to data released Tuesdayby the Office for National Statistics. Weekly earnings in the 3 months ending May rose 3.6%, the strongest rise since July 2008. The unemployment rate meanwhile stayed at 3.8%, matching the lowest level since 1974.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 15, 2019

Arrow Electronics stock falls after profit warning, cuts
Shares of Arrow Electronics Inc. fell more than 6% in the extended session Monday after the electronic components distributor warned about lower second-quarter adjusted earnings and said it was winding down one of its businesses, pinning it on "deteriorating demand conditions." Arrow said it expects second-quarter sales of about $7.3 billion, and a loss in the range of $6.35 a share and $6.23 a share for the quarter. Adjusted for one-time items, Arrow sees it reporting per-share earnings between $1.50 to $1.62 a share. Analysts polled by FactSet had expected adjusted EPS of $1.95 on sales of $7.6 billion for the quarter. The company is scheduled to report on Aug. 1. "While we are disappointed that our anticipated results for the second quarter are lower than we had initially expected due to deteriorating demand conditions in the global components business, we remain confident in our long-term strategy and our ability to generate strong cash flow," Chief Executive Michael J. Long said in a statement. Arrow's personal computer and mobility asset disposition business will close, allowing the company to focus on "next generation" technologies such as artificial intelligence, smart cities and vehicles, Arrow said. The company also embarked on a cost-cutting program it hopes will save about $130 million in annualized savings.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 15, 2019

People's United plans to acquire United Financial for $759 million
People's United Financial Inc. said late Monday it agreed to acquire United Financial Bancorp Inc. for about $759 million in stock. People's United shares declined 1.3% after hours following a 1.4% decline to finish the regular session at $16.61. United Financial shares were halted prior to the announcement following a 0.6% decline to close at $14.02. The deal values United Financial shares at $14.74, or at a 5% premium to Monday's close. People's United said it expects to close the deal in the fourth quarter.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 15, 2019

Dow, Nasdaq end at records as Citigroup results mark start of earnings season
U.S. stocks ended slightly higher on Monday as investors saw results from Citigroup kicking off the unofficial start of earnings season for the second-quarter. The S&P 500 was up by less than 0.1% to 3,014, based on preliminary figures, which would mark a fresh record close. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.1% to end near 27,359. The Nasdaq Composite was up 0.1% to end around 8,258. The Dow and Nasdaq also scored closing records. Shares of Citigroup Inc. were lower by 0.1% even after it reported second-quarter profits rose 4.8%, beating analysts' expectations. Investors also monitored a weak gross domestic product reading in China, with growth falling to its slowest pace since 1992. But investors pointed out the solid industrial production and retail sales numbers helped offset the bearish GDP data.

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Jul 15, 2019

LVMH partners with Stella McCartney
LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE announced a new partnership with fashion house Stella McCartney, though details of the arrangement won't be revealed until September. McCartney will continue to serve as creative director of her brand, and she will still hold a majority ownership. McCartney bought back full ownership of her brand from luxury company Kering in March 2018. The arrangement will include a role for McCartney as a special advisor to LVMH Chief Executive Bernard Arnault on sustainability issues. LVMH shares are up nearly 45% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index has gained 20.2% for the period.

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Jul 15, 2019

Rite Aid partners with Google for program to safely dispose of medication
Rite Aid Corp. , the Rite Aid Foundation, and Google Maps have partnered to make it easier for users to find a medication disposal unit at a Rite Aid or a KidCents Safe Medication Disposal Unit at a local police station or enforcement agency. The Rite Aid Foundation launched the KidCents Safe Medication Disposal program in 2017 and it's now in 18 states. Rite Aid recently installed the last of 100 medication disposal units in a store in Ottawa, Ohio. Rite Aid also makes DisposeRX packets available, a biodegradable powder that, when mixed with water, dissolves prescriptions drugs. Rite Aid stock is down 5% in Monday trading and down nearly 41% for the year to date. Shares of Alphabet Inc. , Google Maps parent, are up almost 11% for the year so far. And the S&P 500 index has gained 20.2% for 2019 so far.

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Jul 15, 2019

Containerboard stocks fall after KeyBanc cuts ratings on 4 companies to underweight
Shares of containerboard companies fell Monday, after KeyBanc Capital analyst Adam Josephson turned bearish on several companies in the sector, as industry fundamentals continue to deteriorate. Shares of WestRock Co. fell 2.7%, Sealed Air Corp. shed 2.2%, Packaging Corp. of America slumped 2.2% and International Paper Co. slid 1.0%. The stocks were the four-biggest decliners within the SPDR Materials Select Sector ETF , which edged up 0.1%. Josephson cut his ratings on all four companies to underweight from sector weight. Although containerboard fundamentals are "worse now than in recent years," Josephson said valuations are now lower than in line with historical averages. That suggests consensus estimates for the companies have further room to fall, which suggests the stocks are more likely to underperform over the next 9 to 12 months. The stocks' selloff comes as the materials ETF has climbed 15.7% year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 20.1%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 15, 2019

Bitcoin prices off 8% as Mnuchin says Treasury will ratchet up cryptocurrency regulation
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Monday afternoon said digital-payment ventures need to be held to the same anti-money laundering, or AML, standards as traditional banks. The official said the Trump administration and the Treasury has "very serious concerns" with the growth of cryptocurrencies, including Facebook Inc.'s ambitious digital-payment network currency known as Libra coin, which has drawn white-hot attention to virtual assets of late. Mnuchin said Treasury was concerned with the speculative nature of assets like bitcoin and its use in illicit activity, including financing terrorism. Mnuchin's briefing on Friday comes after President Donald Trump on Friday, via Twitter, expressed consternation about bitcoin as well as Facebook Inc.'s digital payment venture called Libra coin. Mnuchin's Monday briefing on cryptocurrency regulation also comes a day before Facebook executive Dave Marcus is slated to appear before a Senate committee to discuss Libra. On Friday, Trump tweeted: "I am not a fan of bitcoin and other Cryptocurrencies, which are not money, and whose value is highly volatile and based on thin air," he said. Mnuchin reiterated Trump's comments and said that Facebook has "a lot of work to convince us" that it is complying with U.S. bank regulation. On Monday afternoon, bitcoin prices trading on CME Group were off 8.1% at $10,780.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 15, 2019

EIA forecasts U.S. shale oil output to climb by 49,000 barrels a day in August
Crude-oil production from seven major U.S. shale plays is forecast to climb by 49,000 barrels a day in August to 8.546 million barrels a day, according to a report from the Energy Information Administration released Monday. Oil output from the Permian Basin, which covers parts of western Texas and southeastern New Mexico, is expected to see an increase of 34,000 barrels a day in August from July. Shale oil output from the Anadarko and Eagle Ford regions, however, are expected to see slight monthly declines, the report showed. The August contract for West Texas Intermediate oil was trading down 64 cents, or 1.1%, at $59.57 a barrel ahead of its settlement on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 15, 2019

Gulf of Mexico oil and natural-gas production starts to recover after Hurricane Barry
Oil and natural-gas production in the Gulf of Mexico on Monday was picking up again after Hurricane Barry was downgraded to a tropical depression. About 69% of Gulf oil production and nearly 61% of natural-gas production have been shut in, according to the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement. That marks an improvement from Sunday, when almost 73% of oil and 62% of natural-gas output was down. August West Texas Intermediate oil traded down 61 cents, or 1%, at $59.60 a barrel. August natural gas shed 4.8 cents, or 2%, to $2.405 per million British thermal units.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 15, 2019

Treasury Secretary Mnuchin to hold briefing to discuss cryptocurrency regulation at 2 p.m. ET
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin was slated to discuss digital currency regulation at 2 p.m. Eastern on Monday, the White House said. The briefing, to be held in the James Brady briefing room, comes after President Donald Trump on Friday, via Twitter, expressed consternation about bitcoin as well as Facebook Inc.'s digital payment venture called Libra coin. "I am not a fan of bitcoin and other Cryptocurrencies, which are not money, and whose value is highly volatile and based on thin air," Trump tweeted. Mnuchin's briefing also comes a day before Facebook executive Dave Marcus is expected to appear before a Senate committee to discuss Libra coin.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jul 15, 2019

Senate releases testimony of Facebook exec before Libra hearing Tuesday
Facebook Inc. executive Dave Marcus has some reassuring words for members of Congress on the company's maligned Libra digital currency. A day before he faces the Senate banking committee, Marcus' opening statement was released on Monday. In it, he says subsidiary Calibra won't "make money at the outset" nor will it compete with national currencies. The cryptocurrency, he adds, will be regulated by Swiss financial authorities. Marcus is scheduled to speak before the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday, and House Financial Services Committee on Wednesday. The controversial digital currency has been criticized by everyone from President Donald Trump to billionaire Mark Cuban over issues such as regulation, trust in Facebook's ability to handle personal financial information, and the ability of developing countries to properly administer the currency.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



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