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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 18, 2018

Lam, Applied Materials stocks fall, but Stifel remains upbeat despite memory push-out concerns
Shares of Lam Research Corp. and Applied Materials Inc. are down in premarket trading, though Stifel analyst Patrick Ho reiterated his long-term optimism about the names following recent reports of memory shipment push-outs. "We believe these are attributable to Samsung, and primarily on the 3D NAND front," Ho wrote. "We remind investors that Samsung has been Lam's largest customer for many years now (going back to the early 2000s when the company began working aggressively with Samsung)." Ho remains upbeat in his long-term view of Lam, which he rates a buy, and the industry in general. "We believe that while our 2018 WFE [waber fab equipment] forecast has been lowered, we are still tracking toward a record year (now up 5-6% versus up 10%) and our 2019 WFE forecast has actually been increased due to the timing of the push outs returning the following year," he wrote. Ho is also bullish on Applied Materials, which he said has a more balanced customer base than Lam and less exposure to the memory business. "This recent weakness presents a very attractive buying opportunity for our top large cap stock selection," he wrote. Lam shares are up 20% over the past 12 months, while Applied Materials shares have gained 14%. The S&P 500 has risen 14% in that time, and the PHLX Semiconductor Index has climbed 33%.

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
Jun 18, 2018

Disney downgraded to sell from hold at Pivotal
Walt Disney Co. is trapped between a rock and a hard place, according to analysts at Pivotal Research Group, which downgraded the company's shares to sell from hold on Monday. If Disney were to pay a higher price for 21st Century Fox's entertainment assets due to a bidding war with Comcast Corp., the company's value will fall "as it would reduce the incremental value the company should be able to generate from synergies associated with the acquisition," wrote analyst Brian Wieser. "Alternately, Disney may not be successful in its pursuit of Fox and this would mean the company would not get to realize any of the expected synergies," he added. As such, Pivotal thinks Disney's recent stock run-up is unwarranted. Disney shares are up 1.3% so far this year, while the S&P 500 is up 4.0%.

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
Jun 18, 2018

UPDATE: Solid Biosciences stock surges on news FDA has removed clinical hold on SGT-001 DMD treatment
Solid Biosciences Inc. shares surged 11% in premarket trade Monday, after the company said the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has lifted its clinical hold on SGT-001, the company's treatment for Duchenne muscular dystrophy, allowing a Phase 1/11 trial to resume. SGT-001 is a gene therapy that aims to improve protein expression for patients with DMD, a rare degenerative disease. The clinical hold was imposed in March and came after the unexpected hospitalization of a patient in the phase 1/2 trial, called Ignite DMD. Solid said the FDA has acknowledged that it has addressed all of its concerns and the company has already started to move toward restarting enrollment in the trial. It is planning to enroll and dose several children before dosing adolescents. Shares have gained 177% in the last three months, while the S&P 500 has gained 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
Jun 18, 2018

GreenSky stock rises after several analysts initiate coverage with bullish ratings
Shares of GreenSky Inc. are up 2.9% in premarket trading Monday after several analysts initiated coverage of the stock with bullish ratings. GreenSky, which enables loans at the point of sale, went public in May. "We assert GreenSky is changing the way consumers interact with lenders by automating POS lending and creating value for all ecosystem participants, wrote SunTrust Robinson Humphrey analyst Andrew Jeffrey. "The end result: a fast, efficient, ROI- and satisfaction-enhancing experience for all ecosystem participants." He began coverage with a buy rating on the stock and a $35 price target. J.P. Morgan's Tien-tsin Huang initiated coverage with an overweight rating and $30 price target, writing that GreenSky has the best margins and fastest growth among the small- and mid-cap financial technology companies he covers. "We think a premium to consumer finance names is warranted given its growth profile, asset-light model, and upside potential to estimates," Huang wrote. The stock is down 9.5% so far in June, while the S&P 500 has gained 2.8%.

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
Jun 18, 2018

Commercial landscaper BrightView to offer 21.3 million shares in IPO at $22 to $25 each
BrightView Holdings Inc. set terms for its planned initial public offering on Monday, saying it will offer 21.3 million shares priced at $22 to $25 each. The provider of commercial landscaping services has applied to list on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol "BV." Proceeds of the offering will be used to repay debt. Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan, KKR Capital Markets and UBS are joint bookrunners on the deal, with Baird, Credit Suisse, Macquarie Capital, Jefferies, Mizuho Securities, Morgan Stanley and RBC Capital Markets acting as co-bookrunners and Nomura, Stifel, William Blair, Moelis & Company and SMBC Nikko are acting as co-managers.

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
Jun 18, 2018

Valeant shares drop 5% after FDA fails to approve plaque psoriasis lotion
Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. shares dropped 5.4% in premarket trade on Monday on news that the Food and Drug Administration failed to approve the company's lotion intended to treat plaque psoriasis. In a "complete response letter" notifying the company of the decision, the regulator noted questions about pharmacokinetic data, but did not specify problems with how well the product, Duobrii, works, nor with chemistry, manufacturing and controls processes, the company said. Valeant says it plans to work with the FDA to resolve the matter. Valeant shares have surged 60.6% over the last three months, compared with a 1% rise in the S&P 500 and a 0.6% rise in the Dow Jones Industrial Average .

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
Jun 18, 2018

Rent-A-Center to be taken private by Vintage Capital in deal valued at about $1.4 billion
Rent-A-Center Inc. said Monday it has agreed to be taken private by Vintage Capital, a private and public equity firm, in a deal valued at about $1.365 billion. Vintage will pay $15 per share of the company, which operates in the rent-to-own industry. The deal is expected to close by year-end. The $15 price is equal to a premium of 49% over Rent-A-Center's closing price on Oct. 30, 2017, prior to the announcement that its board was evaluating its strategic options. Shares were halted premarket for the news, but have gained 8.4% in 2018, while the S&P 500 has gained 3.9%.

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
Jun 18, 2018

Ziopharm Oncology shares slide 7% premarket after FDA places clinical hold on cancer trial
Ziopharm Oncology Inc. said Monday the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has placed a clinical hold on a Phase 1 trial of a treatment for cancer. The trial sought to evaluate CD19-specific CAR-T therapies made with Sleeping Beauty technology as an investigational treatment for patients with relapsed or refractory, CD19 leukemias and lymphomas, the company said in a statement. Ziopharm specializes in developing therapies to treat a range of cancers, using Sleeping Beauty, a non-viral approach to genetically modify chimeric antigen receptor (CAR( ) ) and T-cell receptor (TCR( ) ) T cells, which target specific antigens in blood cancers and neoantigens in solid tumors. "CAR( ) T cells very-rapidly manufactured with the Sleeping Beauty platform for this third-generation trial are designed to co-express CD19-specific chimeric antigen receptor, or CAR, membrane-bound interleukin 15 and a safety switch," it said. The FDA is seeking additional information from the company, which is expects to provide in a timely manner, it said. Shares fell 7% premarket on the news, but are up about 3.9% in 2018, matching the S&P 500's gain.

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
Jun 18, 2018

BJ's Wholesale Club to offer 37.5 million shares in IPO, priced at $15 to $17 a pop
BJ's Wholesale Club set terms for its planned initial public offering on Monday, saying in a regulatory filing that it plans to offer 37.5 million shares priced at $15 to $17 a pop. The wholesaler is planning to list on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol "BJ." BofA Merrill Lynch, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan are lead managers on the deal, with another 10 banks acting as co-managers. Underwrites will have the option to purchase up to 5.6 million additional shares for a period of 30 days.

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
Jun 18, 2018

Solid Biosciences says FDA has removed clinical hold on SGT-001 DMD treatment
Solid Biosciences Inc. said Monday the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has lifted its clinical hold on SGT-001, the company's treatment for Duchenne muscular dystrophy, allowing a Phase 1/11 trial to resume. SGT-001 is a gene therapy that aims to improve protein expression for patients with DMD, a rare degenerative disease. The clinical hold was imposed in March and came after the unexpected hospitalization of a patient in the phase 1/2 trial, called Ignite DMD. Solid said the FDA has acknowledged that it has addressed all of its concerns and the company has already started to move toward restarting enrollment in the trial. It is planning to enroll and dose several children before dosing adolescents. Shares were halted for the news, but have gained 177% in the last three months, while the S&P 500 has gained 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
Jun 18, 2018

W.P. Carey and Corporate Property Associates to merge in deal valued at about $6 billion
W.P. Carey Inc. said Monday it has agreed to merge with Corporate Property Associates 17 Global Inc. (CPA), a publicly-held but non-traded REIT, in an all-stock deal valued at about $6 billion. W.P. Carey, a net lease REIT, said it expects the deal to close in the fourth quarter. Under the terms of the deal, CPA shareholders will receive 0.160 W.P. Carey shares for each CPA share, equal to $10.72 a share, based on W.P. Carey's closing price of $67.03 as of June 15. Once the deal is closed, W.P. Carey will have a pro forma equity market cap of about $11 billion and an enterprise value of about $17 billion. The company is expecting the deal to boost adjusted funds from operations. "This transaction simplifies our business and effectively transforms W. P. Carey into a pure-play net lease REIT with earnings derived almost entirely from higher-multiple lease revenues," Chief Executive Jason Fox said in a statement. W.P. Carey shares were not yet active premarket, but are down 2.7% in 2018, while the S&P 500 has gained 3.9%.

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
Jun 18, 2018

Virgin Money accepts CYBG's £1.7 billion all-share bid
U.K. challenger bank Virgin Money Holdings has agreed to a merger bid by rival CYBG PLC worth 1.7 billion pounds, the companies said Monday. The terms of an all-share offer by CYBG, the owner of Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank have been agreed, allowing the lenders to create "the U.K.'s first true national banking competitor to the status quo," they said. CYBG's chief executive, David Duffy, and finance chief, Ian Smith, will keep those roles in the merged bank, which will keep the Virgin Money brand. Virgin Money shareholders will receive 1.2125 new CYBG shares for each Virgin Money share, to own 38% of the new group. Based on CYBG's closing price of 306 pence per share on Friday, each Virgin Money share is valued at 371 pence. That compares with 355 pence at the close Friday.

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
Jun 17, 2018

At least 3 killed in 6.1-magnitude Japan earthquake
A strong earthquake near Osaka, Japan, early Monday morning killed at least three people and injured at least 41, the Associated Press reported, citing local authorities. The 6.1-magnitude quake hit around 8 a.m., causing moderate damage, though some building were reported to be partially collapsed. No tsunami warning was issued. The Japan Times reported that nearby nuclear plants were undamaged, but bullet train lines and some freeways were shut down as a precaution, and nearly 180,000 households were without power.

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
Jun 17, 2018

At least 2 killed in 6.1-magnitude Japan earthquake
A strong earthquake near Osaka, Japan, early Monday morning killed at least two people and injured at least 41, authorities said, according to the Associated Press. The 6.1-magnitude quake hit around 8 a.m., causing moderate damage, though some building were reported to be partially collapsed. No tsunami warning was issued. The Japan Times reported that nearby nuclear plants were undamaged, bullet train lines and some freeways were shut down as a precaution, and nearly 180,000 households were without power.

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
Jun 16, 2018

Tronc sale of L.A. Times to local billionaire set to close Monday: report
Southern California biotech billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong's purchase of the Los Angeles Times from Chicago-based Tronc is slated to close Monday, according to a Saturday report by the Los Angeles paper. Soon-Shiong also gets the San Diego Union-Tribune in the half-billion-dollar deal, along with smaller local publications including an edition of the Spanish-language daily Hoy. The Times report notes that the paper will return to local hands in the deal for the first time in 18 years. Times employees are slated to be relocated to suburban El Segundo, Calif., from the historic downtown tower that had been its home since the 1930s. (The soon-to-be-former sibling Chicago Tribune also moved recently from its architectural showpiece home of nearly a century.)

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
Jun 15, 2018

Nvidia to replace Time Warner in S&P 100
Nvidia Corp. will replace Time Warner Inc. in the S&P 100 index prior to the opening bell on June 20, S&P Dow Jones Indices said late Friday. Nvdia stock was flat in after hours trading and closed down 0.6% to $265.26 during the regular session. The change in the index comes as the AT&T Inc. -Time Warner merger closed earlier this week. FleetCor Technologies Inc. will replace Time Warner in the S&P 500 index . FleetCor stock is up nearly 5% in after hours trading and closed up 0.8% to $216.29 during the regular session.

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
Jun 15, 2018

Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes steps down
Theranos Inc. said late Friday that embattled Chief Executive Elizabeth Holmes has stepped down from the top boss spot. Theranos general counsel David Taylor will take over as CEO. Holmes will remain as chair of the board.

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
Jun 15, 2018

Time Warner to be renamed WarnerMedia, execs departing
Things are shifting at AT&T Inc. and Time Warner Inc. post-merger. John Stankey, a long-time AT&T executive who will be running the Time Warner properties, announced several rebranding and structural changes in an internal memo Friday afternoon. Time Warner will be renamed WarnerMedia, and former Time Warner head Jeff Bewkes and Turner cable-TV unit chief John Martin will be departing. Several other Time Warner executives, including CFO Howard Averill, executive vice president of global public policy Carol Melton and executive vice president Olaf Olafsson, are also leaving. AT&T shares are down 14.9% so far this year and Time Warner shares are up 29.1%. The S&P500 is up 4.0%.

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
Jun 15, 2018

Nearly 2,000 minors separated from families at U.S. border: AP
Nearly 2,000 children have been separated from their families at the U.S. border over a six-week period during a crackdown on illegal entries, the Associated Press reported Friday, citing Department of Homeland Security figures. AP said the figures show that 1,995 minors were separated from 1,940 adults from April 19 through May 31. Department of Homeland Security officials are now referring all cases of illegal entry for criminal prosecution, under a "zero tolerance" policy announced by Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

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
Jun 15, 2018

Stocks close lower as trade-war fears resurface
U.S. stock benchmarks ended the day lower, after the White House approved new tariffs on Chinese imports, causing trade-war jitters to ripple across markets. The Dow Jones Industrial Average came off 0.4% and slipped 0.9% on the week, while the S&P 500 closed 0.1% lower and stood unchanged in positive territory on the week. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index fell 0.2% on the day, but jumped 1.3% on the week. In individual stocks, energy producers such as Exxon Mobil Corp fell on the expectation that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries would agree to increase output next week.

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
Jun 15, 2018

GE's stock falls 3-straight days to a 2-month low after Fitch downgrade
Shares of General Electric Co. slumped 1.5% toward a two-month low, after Fitch Ratings downgrade the industrial conglomerate's credit rating, and warned that further downgrades may be coming. The stock was headed for a third-straight loss, and has shed 4.8% during that streak. Fitch lowered its rating one notch to A, which is just five notches above "junk" status, from A . The rating outlook is negative. "The downgrade of GE's ratings incorporates Fitch's expectation that the company's cash flow and earnings will continue to be constrained while it addresses underperformance in the power business, evaluates its business portfolio and carries out extensive restructuring actions to reduce its cost structure," Fitch said in a statement. Standard & Poor's also rates GE's credit at A, while Moody's Investors Service rates it at A2. GE's stock has tumbled 24% year to date, while the SPDR Industrial Select Sector ETF has slipped 0.8% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average has gained 1.5%.

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
Jun 15, 2018

U.S. oil prices drop to lowest finish in over a week
U.S. benchmark oil futures marked their lowest settlement in more than a week on Friday, pressured by expectations that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies will decide to boost production next week. July West Texas Intermediate crude lost $1.83, or 2.7%, to settle at $65.06 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. That was the lowest settlement since June 6. Prices lost roughly 1% for the week.

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
Jun 15, 2018

Gold futures drop more than 2% to end at 2018 low
Gold dropped Friday as overall strength in the U.S. dollar and the yellow metal's failure to hold above a key resistance level prompted prices to log their lowest settlement of the year. "Volatility was overdue in the gold market," said Adrian Ash, director of research at BullionVault. Gold prices had "failed to jump on 2018's slew of political risks," he said. August gold lost $29.80, or 2.3%, to settle at $1,278.50 an ounce, the lowest finish since December.

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
Jun 15, 2018

Trade-war tensions exact a nearly 90-point toll from the Dow industrials in afternoon trade
The Dow Jones Industrial Average Friday afternoon was being driven lower on the back of intensifying trade-war fears that pushed some of the blue chip's components most sensitive to tariff tensions. The Dow Jones Industrial Average , most recently, was down 207 points, or 0.8%, at 24,967, with shares of Dow components Boeing Co. , 3M Co. , and Caterpillar Inc. , the companies that tend to see the biggest price moves amid rising tensions around trade, were combining to drag the price-weighted benchmark down by 88-points. The slump comes afteron Friday after President Donald Trump earlier in the day announced tariffs on $50 billion worth of Chinese imports and Beijing's Commerce Ministry said it would immediately launch tariffs on U.S. goods in "equal scale and equal strength." Meanwhile, the S&P 500 index was down 0.4% at 2,772, while the Nasdaq Composite Index receded by 0.2% at 7,742.

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
Jun 15, 2018

Oprah inks multi-year deal with Apple
Oprah Winfrey has signed a multi-year content partnership with Apple inc. , according to a Friday report in The Wall Street Journal. Apple and Winfrey will work to create programs that will be released as part of the tech giant's direct-to-consumer video service, the WSJ report said, citing people familiar with the company's plans., with the service expected to launch next year. Winfrey will remain chairman and CEO of cable network OWN, which she formed in partnership with Discovery, Inc. in 2011. Apple shares were down 0.9% in afternoon trade, but are still up 11.7%. Discovery shares are up 19.5% year to date, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has gained 1.0%.

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
Jun 15, 2018

DRAM supply/demand tightness should continue in second half of 2018, says Baird
Baird analyst Tristan Gerra recently met with companies in Asia and left with an "incrementally positive outlook" on DRAM trends for the latter half of the year. "In DRAM, double-digit content increases (data center, smartphones) remain a key catalyst for continued tight supply/demand," Gerra wrote. "In NAND, pricing trends remain very healthy relative to historical trends, while high demand elasticity should benefit revenue." In conjunction with the note, Gerra maintained his outperform rating and $100 price target on Micron Technology Inc. shares. The stock is down 1.8% in Friday trading but up 90% over the past 12 months, compared with a 33% rise for the PHLX Semiconductor Index and a 14% gain for the S&P 500 .

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 15, 2018

Baker Hughes says U.S. oil-rig count inched higher this week
Baker Hughes on Friday reported that the number of active U.S. rigs drilling for oil rose by 1 to 863 this week. That modest rise marks a fourth straight weekly climb. However, the total active U.S. rig count, which includes oil and natural-gas rigs, fell by 3 to 1,059, according to Baker Hughes. July West Texas Intermediate crude was down $1.97, or 3%, at $64.92 a barrel, up slightly from $64.88 a barrel before the Baker Hughes numbers.

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
Jun 15, 2018

First Data stock gains after BTIG raises price target on debt reduction
Shares of First Data Corp. are up 0.5% in Friday trading after BTIG analyst Mark Palmer raised his price target on the stock to $27 from $23. "We continue to view deleveraging as the primary driver of shareholder value for FDC in the medium-term as the company's ample free cash flow should enable it to meet management's target of reducing its net leverage ratio from 5.8x at March 31, a level more in line with its peers' leverage ratios," Palmer wrote. He thinks the company's recently reinstated medium-term revenue outlook looks "relatively easy to achieve and likely conservative" given the trajectory of the company's fast-growing products and services. Shares of First Data are up 18% over the past 12 months, while the S&P 500 has risen 14%.

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
Jun 15, 2018

Boston Beer stock rallies after Susquehanna cheers 'successful innovation' in cider, seltzer
Shares of Boston Beer Co. Inc. are up 1.8% in midday trading Friday after Susquehanna Financial Group analyst Pablo Zuanic raised his price target on the stock to $305 from $221. "Yes, we are chasing the rally here, but in all fairness the very successful innovation around hard cider, hard seltzer, the new Sam'76 (a more approachable craft beer), and sustained 20% plus growth in hard tea, has caught even management by surprise, if we go by guidance and apparent stock outs," Zuanic wrote. He has a neutral rating on the stock and asked, in reference to Anheuser Busch Inbev NV and Molson Coors Brewing Co. : "Why can't BUD and TAP innovate like this?" Shares are up 117% over the past 12 months, while the S&P 500 has gained 14%.

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
Jun 15, 2018

Ex-Trump campaign manager Manafort sent to jail
President Donald Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort has been ordered to jail after being accused of witness tampering, as he awaits trial on conspiracy and money-laundering charges in Special Counsel Robert Mueller's probe, reports said Friday.

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
Jun 15, 2018

European Union clears Comcast's bid for Sky
The European Commission cleared Comcast's $30.7 billion bid for European pay-TV giant Sky PLC on Friday. The cable giant's offer tops the one made by 21st Century Fox, which holds a 39% stake in Sky and made a bid in 2016 for full ownership. Interestingly, Comcast is now in a bidding war with the Walt Disney Co. for some of Fox's entertainment assets, which include Fox's stake in Sky. The NBCUniversal owner made a $65 billion all-cash offer earlier this week, topping Disney's earlier offer of $52.4 billion in stock. Comcast shares are down 15.4% this year, while Disney is up 1.2% and Fox is up 28.9%. The S&P has increased by 3.6%.

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
Jun 15, 2018

WWE stock gains after Wells Fargo boosts price target on optimism for new deals
Shares of World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. are up 1.7% in Friday morning trading after Wells Fargo analyst Eric Katz increased his price target on the stock to $76 from $48 on optimism about the company's new TV rights arrangements for Raw and SmackDown. These haven't been officially announced yet, but they've been reported by news outlets. "Taking these deals along with our expectation for another big increase in the UK and India around the same time (announcements coming H2'18 & H1'19, resp.), we still really like the stock here," Katz wrote. He noted that when a deal was announced in 2014, shares sold off because the terms fell short of investor expectations. As for whether there's the possibility of disappointment this time around upon an official announcement, Katz wrote that there is some risk, but "we think less risk this time as WWE is much better positioned due to demand from more players for its [programming] & less uncertainty on subs." WWE shares are up 106% so far this year, while the S&P 500 has gained 14%.

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
Jun 15, 2018

Avalara's stocks rockets on debut, after IPO prices above expected range
Shares of Avalara Inc. soared on their public debut, with the first trade 50% above the initial public offering price, which was priced above the expected range. The first trade was at $35 at 10:39 a.m. ET, for 1.2 million shares. It has extended gains rocket 52% in morning trade. The IPO priced overnight at $24, above the expected range of $21 to $23, which was raised earlier this week from $19 to $21. The company sold 7.5 million shares to raise $180 million, and could raise an additional $27 million if the underwriters exercise all the options to buy additional shares. Avalara went public at a time that the Renaissance IPO ETF has gained 5.4% the past three months, while the S&P 500 has tacked on 0.6%.

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
Jun 15, 2018

Jabil stock reverses course, opens sharply lower after J.P. Morgan reduces target price
Shares of electronics manufacturer Jabil Inc. are down 8% in Friday morning trading, reversing initial after-hours gains following the company's latest earnings report. J.P. Morgan analyst Paul Coster lowered his price target on the stock after the results came out, writing that the company reported "strong revenues, and issued guidance that aligns with F4Q EPS expectations on continued revenue momentum" but posted weaker-than-expected cash flow. He sees the cash flow numbers reflecting the company's working-capital investment spending and wrote that the company's margins were "weighed down by supply constraints for materials and components." Coster has an overweight rating on the stock, which closed near $30 on Thursday. Shares are up 0.8% over the past 12 months, while the S&P 500 has gained 14.

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
Jun 15, 2018

Stock market opens lower as U.S.-China trade fight intensifies
U.S. stocks opened lower Friday as the U.S.-China trade dispute intensified. President Donald Trump announced tariffs on $50 billion worth of Chinese imports prompting Beijing to vow immediate retaliation. The Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 135 points, or 0.5%, to 25,040. The S&P 500 was off 0.2% at 2,776.48, while the Nasdaq Composite declined 0.4% to 7,729.

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
Jun 15, 2018

Adobe stock falls after earnings, but Stifel, J.P. Morgan hike price targets
Shares of Adobe Systems Inc. are down 3.3% in premarket trading Friday, after the software company reported beats that weren't "as clean" as others in the past, according to J.P. Morgan analyst Sterling Auty. He wrote that while revenue and earnings beat expectations, the company's annual recurring revenue was only in line. In addition, he said that the company's earnings beat "really came from below the line items." Auty raised his price target on the stock to $260 from $235, though he maintained his neutral rating. The stock closed Thursday near $250. Stifel's Tom Roderick also raised his price target, to $275 from $250. "Adobe's 2Q results were sterling, as typical, with revenue beating consensus by $35mn and EPS beating by $0.12," Roderick wrote. "Perhaps investors were looking for a bit more of an aggressive 3Q18 guide given the big 2Q beat." He has a buy rating on the stock. Adobe shares are up 88% over the past 12 months, while the S&P 500 has gained 14%.

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Jun 15, 2018

MGM Growth Properties raised dividend, to an implied yield of 5.7%
MGM Growth Properties LLC said Friday it raised its quarterly dividend by 2.4%, to 43 cents a share from 42 cents a share. The real estate investment trust said the new dividend will be payable July 16 to shareholders of record on June 29. Based on Thursday's stock closing price of $30.40, the new annual dividend rate implies a dividend yield of 5.66%, compared with the yield on the SPDR Real Estate Select Sector ETF of 3.35% and the implied yield on the S&P 500 of 1.90%, according to FactSet. MGM's stock, which was still inactive in premarket trade, has climbed 14% over the past three months, while the REIT ETF has tacked on 0.8% and the S&P 500 has gained 1.3%.

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Jun 15, 2018

Glu Mobile stock gains after Piper Jaffray initiates coverage with bullish rating
Shares of mobile-game maker Glu Mobile Inc. are up 1.9% in premarket trading Friday after Piper Jaffray analyst Michael Olson initiated coverage of the stock with an overweight rating and $7.50 price target. "We believe Glu Mobile is positioned for a favorable ongoing trajectory, with Glu management reducing the company's dependence on new and licensed content, along with improving revenue visibility and cost containment," Olson wrote. "We now see a path to continued multiple expansion and margin improvement based on the changes implemented to date." He predicts that the company will grow its bookings by double digits both this year and next. Glu's games include Diner Dash and Kim Kardashian Hollywood. Olson said the company has a "solid pipeline" in the second half of 2018 as well as in 2019, but he believes the company is "less dependent on new titles" now. Glu shares are up 71% over the past 12 months, while the S&P 500 has gained 14%.

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Jun 15, 2018

Finisar stock falls after earnings miss, but Jefferies remains upbeat
Shares of Finisar Corp. are down 2.4% in premarket trading Friday after the optoelectronics company reported in-line revenue and weaker-than-expected earnings for its April-ended quarter. Jefferies analyst George Notter reiterated his buy rating and $24 price target after the results came out, writing that he believes Wall Street is too pessimistic about the stock. Notter sees recovery potential in the 3D-sensing and optical markets, and he thinks the company could benefit from strategic changes that management hinted at during the latest earnings call. "We think that the underlying fundamentals in the space are better-than-perceived and expect that investors will get more evidence of an optical recovery over the next several quarters," Notter wrote. He said that China could be a catalyst, as could "renewed North America demand." The company's lasers enable facial-recognition and other 3D-sensing features on Apple Inc.'s iPhone X. Finisar shares are down 31% over the past 12 months, while the S&P 500 has gained 14%.

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Jun 15, 2018

Dow poised to see triple-digit fall as Trump announces China tariffs
The Dow Jones Industrial Average looked set to fall on Friday as President Donald Trump announced tariffs on $50 billion worth of Chinese imports, reigniting fears that a clash between the world's largest economic power could erupt into a full-fledged trade war. Futures for the Dow fell nearly 200 points, or 0.8%, at 25,015, putting the Dow on track to post a fourth straight decline. Futures for the S&P 500 fell 0.5% at 2,774, while those for the Nasdaq-100 slumped by 0.5% at 7,277. Trump said the U.S. "will pursue additional tariffs" if China retaliates. Tariffs of 25% will be applied to goods from China that contain "industrially significant technologies," the president indicated. China has already pledged retaliatory action.

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Jun 15, 2018

Wells Fargo gets court approval for class-action settlement over sales misdeeds
Wells Fargo & Company on Friday announced it had received final approval for a class-action settlement over customer account improprieties. The bank said that the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California had approved a $142 million settlement agreement, and called it a "significant step forward in making things right for our customers and further restoring trust with all of Wells Fargo's stakeholders." The settlement money will go to anyone who claims "Wells Fargo opened, without their consent, a consumer or small business checking or savings account or an unsecured credit card or line of credit or enrolled them, under certain circumstances, in Identity Theft Protection services, in each case between May 1, 2002, and April 20, 2017." Anyone who is a member of that class may register at www.WFSettlement.com. Wells' stock has lost nearly 10% in the year to date, while the broader S&P 500 has risen 4%.

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Jun 15, 2018

Universal Display stock sinks after WSJ reports Apple will 'stick with cheaper screens'
Shares of Universal Display Corp. are down 3.5% in premarket trading after a Wall Street Journal report said that Apple Inc. plans to "stick with cheaper screens" with its upcoming iPhone line due to the price sensitivity of its customers. The story said that Apple expects the majority of its iPhone sales to come from devices with liquid-crystal-display (LCD) screens this fall and plans to use LCD screens next year as well. The Wall Street Journal cited unnamed sources "involved in the Apple supply chain." The iPhone X was the first Apple phone to feature an organic-light-emitting-diode (OLED) screen, and these screens tend to be more expensive than LCD ones. Samsung Display Co. is Apple's main OLED supplier, but shares of Universal Display often move on rumors about Apple's display plans. The stock soared late last month after a report indicated that Apple intended to used OLED screens on all three of its 2019 iPhone models, plans that the WSJ story disputed. Universal Display shares are down 15% over the past 12 months, while the S&P 500 has gained 14%.

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Jun 15, 2018

Canada Goose stock soars after wide earnings, revenue beats
Shares of Canada Goose Holdings Inc. are up 17.5% in premarket trading Friday after the maker of down jackets and other cold-weather gear reported fourth-quarter results that beat expectations. The company posted net income of C$8.1 million, or 7 cents a share, after a loss of C$23.4 million, or 23 cents a share, a year ago. Adjusted earnings per share rose to 9 cents a share, after a 15-cent loss per share a year earlier. Analysts tracked by FactSet had been expecting an adjusted net loss of 9 cents. Canada Goose reported revenue of C$124.8 million, up from C$51.1 million a year ago and ahead of the FactSet consensus expectation for C$78.9 million. The stock was up 45% over the past 12 months, as of Thursday's close, compared with a 14% gain for the S&P 500 .

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Jun 15, 2018

Steel Dynamics stock surges after upbeat earnings guidance
Shares of Steel Dynamics Inc. surged 3.2% in premarket trade Friday, after the steel producer provided second-quarter earnings-per-share guidance that was above expectations. The company said it expects EPS of $1.46 to $1.50, up from 63 cents a year ago, and above the FactSet consensus of $1.37. The company said earnings are expected to rise from last year because of increased steel shipments and metal spread expansion. Average quarterly product pricing is expected to increase more than scrap costs, as prices have improved as a results of strong domestic steel demand. "Based on strong steel demand fundamentals and customer optimism, the company believes steel consumption and market dynamics will remain strong throughout the year," the company said in a statement. The stock had run up 13.6% year to date through Thursday, while the S&P 500 had gained 4.1%.

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Jun 15, 2018

Trump announces China tariffs, says U.S. will pursue more if China retaliates
President Donald Trump on Friday announced tariffs on $50 billion worth of Chinese imports, and said the U.S. "will pursue additional tariffs" if China retaliates. Trump said in a statement that the 25% tariffs will be applied to goods from China that contain "industrially significant technologies." China has already pledged retaliatory action.

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Jun 15, 2018

Teva to end late-stage trial of chronic cluster headache treatment after disappointing results
Shares of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. dropped 1.4% in premarket trade Friday, after the drug maker said it will discontinue the phase 3 trial of its treatment for chronic cluster headaches, after a futility analysis of the study revealed that the primary endpoint is unlikely to be met. "While we are disappointed with this outcome, we remain optimistic that fremanezumab could have clinical benefits in additional conditions, beyond migraine, where calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) plays a contributory role in their pathophysiology," said Tushar Shah, head of global specialty clinical development at Teva. Fremanezumab is currently under review by the Food and Drug Administration as an injection to prevent migraines. The stock has run up 25.5% year to date through Thursday, while the S&P 500 has gained 4.1%.

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Jun 15, 2018

Qualcomm extends tender offer of NXP shares for at least the 25th time
Qualcomm Inc. has extended on Friday its cash tender offer for NXP Semiconductor N.V.'s outstanding shares for the no-less-than 25th time over the past 16 months. The expiration was extended to 5 p.m. ET on June 22, from 5 p.m. on June 15. The offer is pursuant to the merger agreement dated Oct. 27, 2016. The first extension was announced on Feb. 6, 2017. Qualcomm's stock climbed 1.3% and NXP shares rallied 2.1% in premarket trade, after the South China Morning Post reported overnight that Chinese regulators have approved Qualcomm's acquisition of NXP. Over the past 12 months, Qualcomm's stock has gained 4.4%, NXP shares have tacked on 3.7%, the PHLX Semiconductor Index has soared 33% and the S&P 500 has climbed 14%.

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Jun 15, 2018

BorgWarner to restate results after re-evaluation of accounting for asbestos-related claims
BorgWarner Inc. disclosed Friday that it should restate the 2015 to 2016 statements included in the 2017 annual report, because of the re-evaluation of accounting liabilities related estimated value of incurred but not reported asbestos-related claims (IBNR claims). The automotive parts supplier said it will also make revisions to 2013 and 2014 financial data, and the quarterly information for 2016, to reflect these changes. The company said it will determine an appropriate estimated liability for IBNR claims to be accrued as of Dec. 31, 2012 as an adjustment to earnings. The charge originally taken in the fourth quarter of 2016 will be reversed, and the company will make appropriate adjustments to the valuation of insurance assets that are responsive to asbestos-related claims. The stock, which was still inactive in premarket trade, has shed 4.4% year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 4.1%.

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Jun 15, 2018

BOJ holds to easing path, keeps rates at ultralow level
The Bank of Japan held to its easing policy on Friday, in contrast to the more hawkish comments from the U.S. Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank this week. Its policy makers voted 8-1 to keep the bank's short-term interest rate at minus 0.1% and its target for the yield on 10-year government bonds at around 0%, the bank said in a statement. The BOJ also pledged to maintain its inflation target at 2%. In a news conference, the bank's Governor Haruhiko Kuroda said it is too early for the BOJ to talk about winding down stimulus, yet despite other central banks' moves in that direction. "It is appropriate for Japan to patiently continue current monetary easing. The divergence of monetary policies reflects different economic and price conditions in each country," Kuroda said, according to a Dow Jones Newswire report.

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Jun 15, 2018

U.S. list of $100 billion more in China tariffs almost finished: Reuters
The U.S. has almost finished drawing up the list for a second wave of tariffs on Chinese goods, on $100 billion of products, Reuters reported Friday, citing sources. The report comes after President Donald Trump on Thursday approved a first round of levies on about $50 billion in Chinese goods, with the details of that initial list expected to be announced on Friday. Beijing responded to the approval by saying it will impose levies of its own on $50 billion in U.S. products. When the two waves of U.S. duties will come into effect has not been outlined.

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Jun 15, 2018

Dow futures tumble 150 points as trade fight ratchets up
U.S. stock futures dropped on Friday as the U.S. government stepped up its trade war with China. Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 156 points, or 0.6%, to 25,054, while those for the S&P 500 index fell 13.90 points, or 0.5%, to 2,774.75. Futures for the Nasdaq-100 index slumped 23.25 points, or 0.3%, to 7,288. The losses came after media reports said that the U.S. is getting ready for a second wave of tariffs on China, having nearly finished a second list of levies on $100 billion worth of Chinese goods. Additionally, U.S President Donald Trump has reportedly approved the first round of $50-billion tariffs on Chinese goods, although it wasn't clear when the move would take effect.

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Jun 14, 2018

6 Fitbit employees charged with stealing Jawbone trade secrets
Six current and former employees of Fitbit Inc. were indicted by federal prosecutors Thursday for allegedly possessing trade secrets of now-defunct fitness-tracker rival Jawbone. The six, who all moved to Fitbit after working at Jawbone, are accused of violating confidentiality agreements and knowingly possessing trade secrets; they could face sentences of up to 10 years in prison. "Intellectual property is the heart of innovation and economic development in Silicon Valley," Acting U.S. Attorney Alex G. Tse said in a statement. "The theft of trade secrets violates federal law, stifles innovation, and injures the rightful owners of that intellectual property." The two San Francisco-based companies had been involved in litigation, which was settled last year, in which Jawbone accused Fitbit of stealing its employees and trade secrets. Jawbone, which was valued at more than $3 billion in 2014, was liquidated last year. Fitbit shares are up about 30% this year.

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Jun 14, 2018

Broadcom says it's laid off 1,110 workers since Brocade merger
Broadcom Inc. said Thursday it has laid off about 1,100 workers as part of cost-cutting following its $5.5 billion acquisition of Brocade Communication Systems, and more cuts may come. In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Broadcom said it incurred about $143 million in restructuring charges, mostly from employee termination costs, in the first two quarters of 2018. The company said it is "further evaluating our resources and business needs and may eliminate additional positions." The Brocade purchase closed late last year. Earlier this year, Broadcom's effort to buy Qualcomm Inc. was blocked by the Trump administration shortly before Broadcom moved its headquarters back to the U.S. from Singapore. Last week, Broadcom posted better-than-expected second-quarter earnings results.

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Jun 14, 2018

Qualcomm, NXP stocks spike after report that China has cleared acquisition
Chinese regulators have approved Qualcomm Inc.'s acquisition of NXP Semiconductors NV , according to a report from the South China Morning Post, which would knock over the final hurdle to approval for the $44 billion deal. Qualcomm stock gained more than 2% in after-hours trading Thursday after the report was released, while NXP shares rocketed almost 10% higher. The deal has been in the works for nearly two years, but was hampered by Broadcom Inc.'s hostile takeover bid for Qualcomm and became hung up amid trade tensions between the U.S. and China. Qualcomm increased its bid for the chipmaker from $39 billion to $44 billion as Broadcom was making its push to buy Qualcomm. China is the last of nine nations that had to approve the deal, but a regulator previously said that the deal had "issues that are hard to resolve."

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Jun 14, 2018

FDA approves generic version of Suboxone film
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration late Thursday said it approved the first generic version of a Suboxone under-the-tongue film for the treatment of opioid addiction. Mylan Technologies Inc., a subsidiary of Mylan NV , and Indian drugmaker Dr. Reddy's Laboratories SA received FDA approval to make the generic. Last month Indivior Plc., the maker of Suboxone, reached a settlement with a group of U.S. companies over patents related to the drug.

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Jun 14, 2018

Jabil shares rise after company swings to profit
Shares of Jabil Inc. rose more than 5% late Thursday as the electronics manufacturer reported fiscal third-quarter earnings above Wall Street expectations and called for an 8% increase in revenue for the fiscal fourth quarter. Jabil said it earned $42.5 million, or 25 cents a share, in the quarter, versus a loss of $25.3 million, or 14 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Adjusted for one-time losses, the company earned 46 cents a share, compared with 31 cents a share a year ago. Revenue rose to $5.4 billion, from $4.5 billion a year ago. Analysts polled by FactSet had expected adjusted earnings of 45 cents a share on sales of $4.9 billion. For the fiscal fourth quarter, the company said it expects revenue between $5.2 billion and $5.6 billion, and adjusted EPS between 56 cents and 80 cents. Jabil also said its board of directors had approved a $350 million share buyback program. Shares had ended the regular trading day up 0.3%.

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Jun 14, 2018

Adobe shares drop after earnings beat
Adobe Systems Inc. shares fell more than 4% in the extended session Thursday after the company beat on the top and bottom line. Adobe shares closed up 0.8% to $258.21 during regular trading. The company reported fiscal second-quarter net income of $663.2 million, or $1.35 a share, compared with $374.4 million, or 75 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Adjusted earnings were $1.66 a share. Revenue rose to $2.2 billion from $1.77 billion in the year-ago period. Analysts surveyed by FactSet had estimated adjusted earnings of $1.54 a share on revenue of $2.16 billion. For the fiscal third quarter, analysts model adjusted earnings of $1.61 a share on revenue of $2.22 billion. Adobe said it expects fiscal third-quarter adjusted earnings of $1.68 a share and sales of $2.24 billion. Adobe stock has surged 47% this year, with the S&P 500 index rising 3.8%.

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Jun 14, 2018

Nasdaq ends at record as stock market climbs
U.S. stock-market indexes closed mostly higher on Thursday, as the European Central Bank announced that it plans to end its bond-buying program at the end of the year but pledged to keep rates at present levels until at least next summer. Stronger-than-expected economic data also lent support to stocks. The Nasdaq Composite Index closed at a record thanks to a rally in technology shares. The index gained 65.34 points, or 0.9%, to 7,761.04. The S&P 500 rose 6.86 points, or 0.3%, to 2,782.49. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 25.89 points, or 0.1%, to 25,175.31. Among the biggest gainers on the S&P 500, Twitter Inc. soared 6.1%.

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Jun 14, 2018

GE's stock falls toward 2-month low, as it paces Dow's losers
Shares of General Electric Co. slid 2.1% toward a two-month low in afternoon trade Thursday, enough to pace the Dow Jones Industrial Average's decliners. Earlier Thursday, France's Minister of the Economy Bruno Le Maire said in a statement that he deeply regrets that GE Chief Executive John Flannery told him it would not be possible for the industrial conglomerate to honor the hiring commitment made when GE bought Alstom SA's energy assets in 2015. The commitment was to create a net 1,000 jobs by the end of 2018, but GE had only created 323 net jobs as of the end of April. The stock, on track to close at the lowest level since April 16, has tumbled 22% year to date, while the Dow has gained 1.8%.

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Jun 14, 2018

Twitter corporate comms chief heads to Activision
Twitter Inc. head of corporate communications Kristin Binns is heading to Activision Blizzard Inc. , Activision said Thursday. Activision was up more than 1% in late afternoon trading to $77.79. Binns will serve as Activision's chief communications officer and senior vice president and will oversee global communications. Binns will start in July after working at Twitter since September, 2016. Activision stock is up 23% this year, as the S&P 500 index gained 3.8%.

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Jun 14, 2018

Apple negotiating for first original feature film: report
Apple Inc. is close to acquiring the rights to an animated feature film, according to Bloomberg News. The report said that Apple is in talks with Cartoon Saloon, an animation studio based in Ireland, about a movie that would become part of the company's original-content offerings. Bloomberg's story cites unnamed sources familiar with the matter. Apple executives have spoken in recent months about wanting to make a deeper push into original video. The company's first original shows, which included a Carpool Karaoke series and a program about the making of Apple apps, didn't gain much traction. Apple has since hired high-profile Sony Corp. executives to oversee its content efforts. The company didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. Shares are little changed in Thursday's session and up 31% over the past 12 months, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has gained 18%.

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Jun 14, 2018

IQiyi stock surges toward best day on record after announcing new AI competition, board changes
Shares of Chinese streaming company iQiyi Inc. are up 14% in Thursday trading, putting the stock on pace for the best single-day percentage gain in its history. Shares have posted five double-digit percentage gains since the beginning of May. IQiyi, which was split from Baidu Corp. in March, made a number of announcements Thursday, including that it was adding Jane Sun, the Chief Executive Officer of Ctrip.com International Ltd. , as an independent director of its board. The company also said it was starting an artificial-intelligence competition centered on "video-based multimodal biometric recognition." The stock is now trading at more than double its March IPO price of $18. Shares are up 51% so far this month, while the S&P 500 has gained 4.1%.

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Jun 14, 2018

Financial stocks falls as Treasury yields drop below pre-Fed-rate-hike levels
Financial stocks were broadly lower Thursday, as a decline in longer-term Treasury yields took the shine off the Federal Reserve's rate hike the previous session. The SPDR Financial Select Sector ETF slumped 0.8%, and was the biggest decliner of the ETFs tracking the S&P 500's 11 key sectors. Shares of J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. shed 1.7%. Among the financial ETF's (XLF) other most heavily weighted components, shares of Bank of America Corp. lost 1.1%, Berkshire Hathaway Inc. gave up 1.2%, Wells Fargo & Co. fell 0.6%, Citigroup Inc. slid 1.4% and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. eased 0.1%. Meanwhile, the yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell 3.3 basis points (0.031 percentage points) to 2.944%, on track for the lowest close of the week even though the Fed raised overnight interest rates by 25 basis points on Wednesday. Declining longer-term yields can hurt bank profits, because it can narrow the spread they earn between their longer-term assets that are funded with shorter-term liabilities.

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Jun 14, 2018

U.S. oil prices mark highest finish in two weeks
U.S. benchmark oil futures marked their highest settlement in two weeks on Thursday, buoyed by a hefty weekly U.S. decline in crude supplies. Prices finished off the session's best levels, however, weighed down by record domestic crude output. Traders also mulled potential changes to an 18-month old agreement to curb global production when members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries meet on June 22. July West Texas Intermediate crude added 25 cents, or 0.4%, to settle at $66.89 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. That was the highest settlement since May 31.

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Jun 14, 2018

Tailored Brands stock falls after same-store-sales disappoint, but analysts see positive signs in earnings
Tailored Brands Inc. are down 21% in Thursday afternoon trading after the company reported what analysts classified as disappointing same-store-sales. Deutsche Bank's Paul Trussell said that the company's JoS. A. Bank business suffered from a drop in average unit revenue due to "planned promotions." He sees further tough comparisons ahead for JoS. A Bank but said that he thinks the company "is on the right track to deliver better comps and overall operating margins given a shift from rental to retail, custom suit initiatives, and solid inventory control." Trussell has a hold rating and $31 price target on the stock. Jefferies analyst Randal Konik reiterated his buy rating and $40 target, writing that gross margins and same-store-sales at JoS. A. Bank "were a touch light" but that other areas of the business showed positive signs. He was encouraged by growth in custom suits, a cleaner balance sheet, and an increase in transactions. The stock is up 21% this year, while the S&P 500 has gained 4.1%.

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Jun 14, 2018

Charah Solutions stock falls in first day of trading, after pricing IPO below range
Shares of Charah Solutions Inc. are down in their first day of trading, after the company, which provides services to the coal and nuclear industries, priced its initial public offering significantly below its expected range. The IPO priced at $12, while the company had expected it to price in the range of $16 to $18. The first trade was executed at 9:54 a.m. for $11.80. Shares are now trading a bit lower, down 4.3% at $11.48. Charah's IPO comes as the Renaissance IPO ETF is up 11% this year, and as the S&P 500 is up 4.1%.

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Jun 14, 2018

IMF says U.S. outlook is strong but deficit spending raises risks
The U.S. economic outlook is strong, but the tax-and-spend policies make the fiscal stimulus stronger than what has been since the Johnson administration, the International Monetary Fund said Thursday in a report on the U.S. economy. "The near-term outlook for the U.S. economy is one of strong growth and job creation," the IMF said. The IMF identifies risks including higher public debt, a greater risk of an inflation surprise, international spillover risks, the risk of future recession and increased global imbalances. The IMF added the deficit spending "will leave few budget resources available to invest in a range of urgently needed supply-side reforms, including infrastructure spending, that would raise living standards." The Fed will have to raise policy rates at a faster pace to achieve its dual mandate, the IMF added in what's called its Article IV consultation, which it does with every member nation.

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Jun 14, 2018

Activision, Take-Two stocks gain after bullish E3 comments from Morgan Stanley
Shares of Activision Blizzard Inc. and Take-Two Interactive Software Inc. are up 2% and 2.4%, respectively, after Morgan Stanley analyst Brian Nowak penned an upbeat note with his thoughts on the E3 convention. On Activision, Nowak highlighted management's "bullish" comments on new mobile games based on Blizzard titles as well as improvements in the company's King advertising business. He was also optimistic about Activision's Overwatch League, an e-sports venture. "We believe OWL has over-delivered on its minimum audiences with Twitch and will generate $120mn in its 2-year contract," Nowak wrote. As for Take-Two, Nowak pointed to management's continued focus on the launch of Red Dead Redemption 2. He sees "room to grow" for the company's NBA2K League. Nowak and his team "favor" Activision and Take-Two to other publishers. Activision's stock is up 34% over the past 12 months, while Take-Two shares have gained 63% and Electronic Arts Inc. shares have risen 32%. The S&P 500 is up 14% in the past year.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Dropbox stock soars 14%, heads for best day in history
Shares of Dropbox Inc. are up 14% in Thursday trading, putting the stock on pace for its best single-day gain in history as it surges to new record levels. The stock closed up 6.9% on March 26, shortly after the file-storage company's initial public offering. Dropbox shares have been up in the last four trading sessions. Earlier this week, the company announced updates on its shingled magnetic recording (SMR) storage technology and said it would be the first to deploy this technology "at exabyte scale." Dropbox shares are up more than 70% from their March IPO price of $21.

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Jun 14, 2018

Trump sued by New York attorney general over Trump Foundation
New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood is suing President Donald Trump, the Trump Foundation and three of Trump's adult children, alleging the foundation has been in "persistent violation of state and federal law governing New York State charities." The attorney general is seeking to dissolve the foundation for "its persistently illegal conduct," according to the lawsuit.

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Jun 14, 2018

Square stock gains after Wells Fargo raises price target
Shares of Square Inc. are up 3.4% in Thursday morning trading after Wells Fargo analyst Timothy Willi upped his price target to $60 from $42. He has a market perform rating on the stock. Looking at Square's current customer base of merchants and Square Cash app users, Willi estimates that the company has a $9.3 billion revenue opportunity with its subscription and services offerings. However, he thinks the market opportunity is "much larger" when taking into account the likelihood that Square's customer base "will grow substantially over time" and that the company will add new subscription and services products. "As such, we are increasingly confident in SQ's ability to drive substantial growth in S&SB revenue for many years to come," he wrote. Square shares are up 176% over the past 12 months, while the S&P 500 has gained 14%.

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Jun 14, 2018

Natural-gas futures fall as U.S. supplies climb more than expected
The U.S. Energy Information Administration reported Thursday that domestic supplies of natural gas rose by 96 billion cubic feet for the week ended June 8. Analysts polled by S&P Global Platts had forecast a climb of 88 billion cubic feet, while the average over the last five years for the same week was a rise of 91 billion. Total stocks now stand at 1.913 trillion cubic feet, down 785 billion cubic feet from a year ago, and 507 billion below the five-year average, the government said. July natural gas declined by 3 cents, or 1%, to $2.933 per million British thermal units, down from $2.969 before the data.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Alibaba, JD.com stocks rise after Stifel weighs in on China retail sales data
Shares of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and JD.com Inc. are up 1% and 3.5%, respectively, after Stifel analyst Scott Devitt commented on China's latest retail-sales numbers for May. Total retail sales rose 8.5%, down from 9.4% in April and below analyst forecasts. A slowdown in car sales was partly to blame for the lower-than-expected figures. Online retail sales accelerated relative to the April period, growing 25.8%. Food and clothing were two key categories. "The NBS [National Bureau of Statistics] noted that sales of communication equipment and household appliances increased 12.2% y/y and 7.6% y/y, respectively, driven by steady income growth in the region," Devitt wrote. "We believe Alibaba and JD.com will continue to benefit from increasing online / mobile shopping penetration, offline / online retail integration, and China's emerging middle class." Alibaba's stock is up 53% over the past 12 months, while JD.'s stock has gained 10%. The S&P 500 has risen 14% over the past year.

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Jun 14, 2018

Disney's stock surges to pace Dow gainers after Comcast's rival cash bid for Fox assets
Walt Disney Co.'s stock surged 2.6% in morning trade Thursday, to pace the Dow Jones Industrial Average's gainers. The rally comes after Comcast Corp. made $65 billion cash bid for some coveted 21st Century Fox Inc. assets, which was higher than Disney's $52 billion all stock deal announced in December. Analyst Daniel Ives at GBH Insights said for Disney to compete with Comcast's bid, it would not only have to raise the value of its bid, but also change it to all cash from stock. That would be better for Disney's investors, because a stock deal dilutes shareholder value.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Spotify isn't 'Netflix 2.0,' says Deutsche Bank after initiating coverage with a hold
Spotify Technology SA shares are up 1.3% in Thursday morning trading, despite a lukewarm initiation note from Deutsche Bank analyst Lloyd Walmsley, who started coverage with a hold rating. "We are bullish on the music industry but struggle with the bull case on Spotify given its lack of content differentiation or visibility around long term margins," he wrote. "We do not think Spotify is Netflix 2.0." Walmsley provided a list of the factors that would make him more upbeat about Spotify, including significant market-share growth, valuable proprietary content, diversification away from the big labels, and a lower valuation. He has a $155 price target on the stock, which recently changed hands near $173. Spotify shares are up 10% so far in June, while the S&P 500 has gained 3.1%.

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Jun 14, 2018

Sage shares drop 3% after $90 mln Shionogi deal for key drug
Sage Therapeutics Inc. shares dropped 3.3% in Thursday morning trade after the company announced a $90 million deal with Shionogi & Co. Ltd. for the clinical development and commercialization of its drug SAGE-217 in Japan, Taiwan and South Korea. In addition to $90 million upfront, the deal makes Sage eligible for additional milestone payments of up to $485 million, as well as tiered royalties on sales in the three countries. Shionogi will also handle clinical development, regulatory filings and commercialization of SAGE-217 for major depressive disorder and any other indications in those countries. Sage is developing SAGE-217 for major depressive disorder, postpartum depression, bipolar depression and insomnia; just this week the company announced plans to expedite U.S. development of the drug in major depressive disorder and postpartum depression, sending the company's shares up. Why, precisely, shares declined on Thursday is unclear; it's possible investors expected a more lucrative deal, or hoped for the company to be acquired entirely. Because of how far along its drug pipeline is, Sage has been viewed by some as a promising acquisition target. Sage shares have dropped 5.2% over the last three months, compared with a 1.4% rise in the S&P 500 and a 2.3% rise in the Dow Jones Industrial Average .

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

U.S. business inventories rise 0.3% in May
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - Business inventories in the U.S. rose 0.3% in May to rebound from a decline in the prior month, the Commerce Department said Thursday. Sales rose 0.4% in the month. The ratio of inventories to sales, meanwhile, was unchanged at 1.35. That's how many months it would take to sell all the inventory on hand. One year ago, the inventory-to-sales ratio was higher at 1.38. An increase in inventories adds to gross domestic product.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

U.S. business inventories rise 0.3% in April
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - Business inventories in the U.S. rose 0.3% in April to rebound from a decline in the prior month, the Commerce Department said Thursday. Sales rose 0.4% in the month. The ratio of inventories to sales, meanwhile, was unchanged at 1.35. That's how many months it would take to sell all the inventory on hand. One year ago, the inventory-to-sales ratio was higher at 1.38. An increase in inventories adds to gross domestic product.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

GrubHub stock rises after Oppenheimer boosts target to $130
Shares of GrubHub Inc. are up 1.9% in Thursday morning trading after Oppenheimer analyst Jason Helfstein raised his price target on the stock to $130 from $100. The new $130 price target is the second highest among those tracked by FactSet. "We see opportunity for GRUB to leverage capabilities in UI, personalization/loyalty and digital marketing to power mobile apps for many large chain restaurants," Helfstein wrote. He sees a market opportunity of $169 billion including in-store and takeout orders. Helstein also said that GrubHub's customer acquisition costs have been stable recently, even though the company has been ramping up ad spend. "Directionally, we believe this indicates impressive marketing efficiency, bullish in our view, given the level of competition in the space," he wrote. GrubHub shares are up 166% over the past 12 months, while the S&P 500 has gained 15%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Pandora stock rises after company announces Snapchat partnership
Shares of Pandora Media Inc. are up 2.1% in Thursday morning trading after the company said it has a new partnership with Snapchat parent Snap Inc. . Snap's stock is up 1.7%. "Soon, Pandora listeners will be able to send their favorite songs to friends and family through unique song cards that celebrate album art on top of an animated background, and receivers will be able to swipe up to listen directly on Pandora," the music-streaming company said in a release. "This integration will expand Pandora's social sharing capabilities by reaching Snapchat's massive audience while enhancing music discovery across both platforms." The feature will soon be available to U.S. users and is part of Snap's new Snap Kit developer platform. Pandora shares are up 2.4% over the past 12 months, while Snap shares are down 24%. The S&P 500 has gained 14% over the past year.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Roku stock rises after Macquarie starts coverage with outperform rating
Shares of Roku Inc. are up 0.5% in Thursday morning trading after Macquarie analyst Paul Golding initiated coverage of the stock with an outperform rating and $49 12-month price target. "Roku's smart TV penetration is growing rapidly thanks to its licensed Roku OS, which drives higher viewership and leads to growth in ad impressions," Golding wrote. He's also upbeat about the Roku Channel, which "curates licensed or partnered content" and generates ad revenue. The Roku Channel is now the company's 3rd most watched ad-supported channel and will soon be coming to television sets made by Samsung. "We expect it could even expand beyond this," Golding wrote. Roku shares are down 16% so far this year, while the S&P 500 has gained 4.1%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

U.S. stocks rise, shake off Fed-fueled wobble amid strong data, ECB update
U.S. stocks opened modestly higher on Thursday, after the European Central Bank left interest rates unchanged and provided clarity on the timeline for its bond-buying program. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.3% to 25,282. The S&P 500 added 0.3% to 2,783. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 0.4% to 7,726. The ECB laid out plans to taper its program of monthly bond purchases later this year, aiming to bring them to a halt by the end of 2018. Separately, a read on retail sales was up 0.8% in May, stronger than expected, while jobless claims fell by 4,000 in the latest week. In company news, 21st Century Fox Inc. climbed 1.2% a day after Comcast Corp. offered to buy a big chunk of Fox's entertainment and international assets for $65 billion. On Wednesday, stocks ended at their lows of the session after the Federal Reserve signaled a slightly more aggressive plan to tighten monetary policy this year than had previously been projected.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

AMD gaining share in desktop but Ryzen mobile is 'still a no-show,' says Susquehanna
Shares of Advanced Micro Devices Inc. are up 1.7% in premarket trading Thursday after Susquehanna analyst Christopher Rolland wrote that the company is gaining share with Ryzen on the desktop side but said the company's Ryzen Mobile business was "still a no-show." According to Rolland's data, the company has 15.2% share in desktop CPUs this quarter and and also picked up share in standalone processors. "However, disappointingly Ryzen Mobile is just 0.5% of total laptop share in its second quarter after launch," Rolland wrote. "AMD 2Q18 laptop CPU share hit a new low at just 3.2%." Meanwhile, Rolland is upbeat about Intel Corp. and said that improving average selling prices on the PC side could lead to second-quarter upside. AMD shares are up 39% over the past 12 months, while Intel shares have gained 55%. The S&P 500 is up 14% in that time and the PHLX Semiconductor Index is up 31%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Nucor's stock rallies after earnings expected to be more than double last year
Shares of Nucor Corp. rallied 2.4% in premarket trade Thursday, after the steel maker provided a second-quarter earnings-per-share outlook that was more than double the results from a year ago. The company said it expects EPS of $2.05 to $2.10 for the current quarter, up from $1.00 last year. That FactSet EPS consensus is $1.72. The outlook is also well above sequential first-quarter EPS of $1.10 because of higher selling prices and increased profitability across all steel mill product groups. "Our improved earnings are the result of much stronger market conditions that we believe have been positively impacted by deregulation, tax reform and higher, stable oil prices," the company said in a statement. the stock had gained 1.2% over the past three months through Wednesday, while the S&P 500 had gained 1%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Trade Desk stock gains after Susquehanna boosts target to $105, calls company the 'best' play on shifting ad budgets
Shares of ad-tech company The Trade Desk Inc. are up 1.1% in premarket trading Thursday after Susquehanna Financial Group analyst Shyam Patil bumped his price target on the stock up to $105, from $81 previously. The new price target makes Patil the most bullish analyst on the stock among those tracked by FactSet. Patil called TTD "the best way to play the TV ad budget shift," more so than better-known names like Netflix Inc. and Roku Inc. . "TTD continues to scale inventory partnerships and our checks indicate that TTD is oft-times the first choice for content owners when looking to monetize inventory programmatically," he wrote. Patil thinks the company might actually gain share due to the implementation of the GDPR privacy rules in Europe. "We...think the regulation has caused TTD's top competitor, Doubleclick, to make changes which appear to be leading to global share losses to TTD" and others, he wrote. The stock is up 83% over the past 12 months, while the S&P 500 has gained 14%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Nike stock gains after Wedbush boosts target to $82
Nike Inc. are up 0.8% in premarket trading Thursday after Wedbush analyst Christopher Svezia raised his price target on the stock to $82 from $75. The new target makes Svezia the second most bullish analyst on Nike's stock among those tracked by FactSet. "The company should be poised to exceed expectations throughout FY19 given accelerating growth in North America, possibly international, and gross margin tailwinds," Svezia wrote. "Outside the US, while growth remains strong, Nike is likely taking share in Europe while sustaining DD growth in China." He's upbeat about the company's efforts to improve its products and production speed, and he sees improvement in follower counts on several of the company's key social-media accounts. Svezia has an outperform rating on Nike shares, which are up 36% over the past 12 months. The Dow Jones Industrial Average has gained 18% in that time.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

AppleCare has been 'underestimated' but highlights Apple's reliance on device sales, says analyst
Raymond James analyst Chris Caso took a cautious stance on Apple Inc.'s services business Thursday, writing that the fast-growing segment is linked to device sales, which have been slowing. He said that the company's AppleCare insurance product has been "underestimated" by Wall Street, but he thinks that AppleCare "underscores what we think is Apple's fundamental problem." Caso refers to his belief that "most of Apple's revenue is tied to device sales, and growth has stagnated due to rising prices, and demand hasn't been as elastic as hoped." He is cautious about App Store growth as well, as he thinks in-app sales will become a bigger portion of the App Store's revenue as device sales continue to slow. Apple takes a smaller cut of in-app purchases than it does of app sales, Caso wrote. Apple stock is up 0.3% in premarket trading Thursday and up 31% over the past 12 months. The Dow Jones Industrial Average has risen 18% in that time.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Dow futures rise by 100 points as ECB's Draghi kicks off news conference
U.S. stock-index futures added to gains early Thursday after the European Central Bank kicked off its news conference after announcing a schedule for a gradual winding down of its easy-money policies. Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 100 points, or 0.4% at 25,304, those for the S&P 500 index added 0.3% at 2,787, while futures for the Nasdaq-100 advanced by 0.4% at 7,256. The ECB left its benchmark eurozone interest-rates unchanged but the attention was more keenly focused on the central bank's move to join the Federal Reserve in beginning to tighten policy in the aftermath of the 2007-09 financial crisis. The the ECB kept its deposit rate unchanged at minus-0.4% and said it wouldn't raise interest rates "at least through the summer of 2019." On Wednesday, the Fed raised its policy rate a quarter of a percentage point to a range between 1.75% and 2% and penciled in a total of four rate increases in 2018.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Amazon stock gains after D.A. Davidson hikes target to $2,100 on private-label opportunities
Shares of Amazon.com Inc. are up 0.3% in premarket trading Thursday after D.A. Davidson analyst Tom Forte raised his price target on the stock to $2,100 from $1,900. He is one of two analysts listed on FactSet with a $2,100 price target, the second-highest target among analysts tracked by the service. He is also one of four analysts whose price target implies a $1 trillion valuation for Amazon. "The $200 difference [between Forte's old and new price targets] is due to the increase in our annual sales forecasts by 100 basis points, per year, due to our increased confidence in its ability to generate additional private-label and advertising revenues," he wrote. Amazon shares are up 75% over the past 12 months, while the S&P 500 has gained 14%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

U.S. import prices climb 0.6% in May, more evidence of inflation
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - The import price index in May rose by 0.6% for the second straight month, adding to mounting evidence of higher inflation. Rising gas prices in particular are helping to spur on inflation. Excluding fuel, prices of imported goods advanced a smaller 0.2%, the government said Thursday. The increase in import prices over the past 12 months rose to 4.3% from 3.6%. If fuel is omitted, the increase in import prices over the past year was a more modest 1.9%. Earlier this week, a pair of measures for U.S. consumer and wholesale prices both rose again, underscoring an increase in inflationary pressures that caused the Federal Reserve this week to raise U.S. interest rates for the seventh time since the end of 2015. U.S. export prices also rose 0.6% in May.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Etsy's stock soars toward record high after raised revenue growth outlook and transaction fees
Shares of Etsy Inc. soared 9.1% toward a record high in premarket trade Thursday, after the online seller of artisan and creative goods raised its 2018 revenue growth outlook, citing increased transaction fees. The company said it now expects 2018 revenue to rise 32% to 34% from a year ago, compared with its previous guidance range of 22% to 24%. The FactSet 2018 revenue consensus of $7.10 billion implies 13% growth. Etsy said starting July 16, it is raising the fee charged when a seller makes a sale to 5.0% from 3.5%, which will also apply to the cost of shipping. "Our revised fee structure will allow us to make more meaningful investments on behalf of our sellers while remaining what we believe is the best value for entrepreneurs looking to start, manage, and grow a creative business," said Chief Financial Officer Rachel Glaser. The company plans to increase its 2017 direct marketing spend "by at least 40%" in 2018. The stock had run up 61% year to date through Wednesday, while the S&P 500 had gained 3.8%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Treasury yields slip after ECB signals time table for end of easy-money era
Treasury yields on Thursday extended their decline as the European Central Bank laid out a schedule for paring back is asset-purchase program. The ECB indicated that it would end in December and signaled that it would join the Federal Reserve in tightening its benchmark interest rates at least until the summer of 2019. The 10-year Treasury note yield fell 3.8 basis points to 2.941%, while the 30-year bond yield slipped 4.8 basis points to 3.054%. The 2-year note yield fell 2.5 basis points to 2.557%. Bond prices move in the opposite direction of yields. The ECB's bond-buying program has contributed to keeping long-dated Treasury rates capped, by drawing investors away from eurozone debt, market participants have said. However, investors responded more strongly to the ECB's "dovish" forward guidance suggesting rates would stay low for longer than had been expected.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

ViiV Healthcare reports positive results for late-stage HIV trials
ViiV Healthcare, which is majority-owned by GlaxoSmithKline and has Pfizer Inc. and Shionogi as shareholders, reported on Thursday positive early results from two late-stage trials testing its two-drug regimen in patients new to HIV treatment relative to a three-drug regimen. GlaxoSmithKline shares rose 2.4% in premarket trade on Thursday after the news. The two late-stage studies, Gemini-1 and Gemini-2, met their primary endpoint at week 48, the company said. It plans to file for regulatory approvals of the two-drug regimen, composed of the drugs dolutegravir and lamivudine, later this year, and also has plans to present full results at an upcoming scientific meeting. ViiV Healthcare had another two-drug HIV regimen, intended for individuals with HIV-1 who have been stable on a regimen for at least half a year, approved by the FDA in November. GlaxoSmithKline shares have surged nearly 11% over the last three months, compared with a nearly 1% rise in the S&P 500 and a 1.8% rise in the Dow Jones Industrial Average .

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

U.S. stock futures extend gains after ECB lays out plan to end crisis-era bond-buying program
U.S. stock-index futures added to gains slightly on Thursday after the European Central Bank offered a schedule for gradually winding down its easy-money policies. Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.2% at 25,250, those for the S&P 500 index added 0.2% at 2,784, while futures for the Nasdaq-100 advanced by 0.2% at 7,246. The ECB left its benchmark eurozone interest-rates unchanged but the attention was more keenly focused on the central bank's move to join the Federal Reserve in beginning to tighten policy in the aftermath of the 2007-09 financial crisis. The the ECB kept its deposit rate unchanged at minus-0.4% and said it wouldn't raise interest rates "at least through the summer of 2019." On Wednesday, the Fed raised its policy rate a quarter of a percentage point to a range between 1.75% and 2% and penciled in a total of four rate increases in 2018.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Euro rallies, then slides after ECB announces end of QE
The euro was sent on a rollercoaster ride on Thursday after the European Central Bank said it'll extend it's quantitative easing program until the end of December and then end it altogether. The shared currency immediately jumped to $1.1852, but quickly turned lower to trade around $1.1746. The ECB said it'll continue to buy 30 billion euros a month until September and then cut the monthly pace to 15 billion euros a month until the end of the year. On interest rates, the central bank said rates will remain at their present all-time lows "at least through the summer of 2019."

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

ECB plans to bring its bond-buying program to a close in December
The European Central Bank on Thursday said it would look to wind down its bond-buying program by the end of the year. The ECB, in a statement following a meeting of the Governing Council, said it would continue its program of buying 30 billion euros a month of bonds through September, as planned. Beginning in October, the ECB plans to reduce its purchases to 15 billion euros a month through the end of December, then bringing them to an end, provided data confirms the bank's medium-term inflation outlook. The ECB, as expected, left interest rates unchanged.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

American Axle's stock rises after sales target raised
Shares of American Axle & Manufacturing Holdings Inc. rose 1.3% in premarket trade Thursday, after the automotive parts maker that it now targets 2018 sales of $7.1 billion to $7.2 billion, up from previous guidance of $7.0 billion. The company affirmed its outlook for U.S. seasonally adjusted annual rate of sales in the range of 16.8 million to 17.0 million light vehicle units, and its adjusted EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) margin target of 17.5% to 18.0% of sales. The stock has run up 16.5% over the past three months, while the S&P 500 has gained 1%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Oracle's stock sinks after J.P. Morgan downgrades on concerns over CIO spending contraction
Shares of Oracle Corp. sank 2.3% in premarket trade Thursday, after the enterprise software company was downgraded at J.P. Morgan, which cited signs that spending on the company's products would decline. Analyst Mark Murphy cut his rating to neutral, after being at overweight since March 2017, and trimmed his stock price target to $53, after being at $55 for the past year. "In our survey of 154 CIOs, [Oracle] received the largest number of indications for planned spending contraction this year (32), materially more than the second-worst company, which was [International Business Machines Corp.] with 25 indications of spending contraction," Murphy wrote in a note to clients. He said the results of the survey made him "uncomfortable" because they have been "highly predictive" over the years. IBM's stock was still inactive premarket. Over the past three months, Oracle shares have lost 7.7%, while the SPDR Technology Select Sector ETF has gained 2.7% and the S&P 500 has advanced 1%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Royal Caribbean to pay $1 billion for a two-thirds stake in Silversea Cruises
Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. said Thursday it was paying about $1 billion to acquire a 66.7% equity stake in privately held Silversea Cruises. Royal Caribbean plans to fund the deal with debt. As part of the deal, Silversea Chairman Manfredi Lefebvre D'Ovidio will qualify for a contingent consideration of about 472,000 Royal Caribbean shares, payable on certain performance metrics from 2019 to 2020. Based on Wednesday's stock closing price of $107.98, the contingent could be worth $50.97 million. Separately, Royal Caribbean affirmed its 2018 adjusted EPS guidance range of $8.70 to $8.90, but said increases in market fuel and dollar strength could reduce second-half net EPS by roughly 25 cents a share. The stock, which was still inactive in premarket trade, had shed 14% over the past three months, while the S&P 500 has gained 1%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Jun 14, 2018

Michaels Companies stock tumbles after same-store sales and outlook miss expectations
Shares of Michaels Companies Inc. tumbled 16% in premarket trade Thursday, after the arts and crafts retailer beat fiscal first-quarter profit expectations, but missed on same-store sales and provided a downbeat outlook. Net income for the quarter to May 5 fell to $26.9 million, or 15 cents a share, from $72.2 million, or 38 cents a share, in the same period a year ago. Excluding non-recurring items, adjusted earnings per share came to 39 cents, above the FactSet consensus of 38 cents. Revenue slipped to $1.156 billion from $1.159 billion, but just topped the FactSet consensus of $1.151 billion, but same-store sales growth of 0.4% missed expectation of a 0.7% rise. Looking ahead, the company said it expects second-quarter same-store sales to be about flat, compared with the FactSet consensus for a 0.7% rise. The stock had lost 9.3% year to date through Wednesday, while the SPDR S&P Retail ETF had climbed 9.9% and the S&P 500 had gained 3.8%.

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