Ultimate Market Recap: News Corp. Could Split, Facebook Adds Email
Pre-Market BUZZERS: RIM Rallies, Facebook and Zynga POP!
Shares of Research in Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM) are up 0.50 percent in pre-market hours today after closing more than 7 percent lower on Monday. Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) downgraded the company from Equal Weight to Underweight, saying that the BlackBerry maker would have to shrink operations in order to survive. “We believe the fundamental story at RIM is essentially broken,” analyst Ehud Gelblum said. “The most likely way to unlock value from the company is either through a strategic option or selling off the operations.”
Zynga Inc. (NASDAQ:ZNGA) shares are popping 2.72 percent higher in pre-market trading. The social-gaming company received positive coverage from Piper Jaffray Monday. The firm’s analysis of quarter-to-date AppData indicates that Zynga’s daily average user growth remains in-line with expectations and do not appear to suggest a Q2 miss, which seems to be priced into the stock. The firm believes that Zynga is in the position to be benefited by social and mobile gaming increases. The firm reiterates its Outperform rating on the stock.
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Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) shares are attracting attention early trading up 0.90 percent Tuesday, as the company announced that chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg is joining its board of directors. “Sheryl has been my partner in running Facebook and has been central to our growth and success over the years,” said CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a press statement. “Her understanding of our mission and long-term opportunity, and her experience both at Facebook and on public company boards makes her a natural fit for our board.”
Coinstar Inc. (NASDAQ:CSTR) shares are dropping more than 2 percent in pre-market trading. The company announced it has completed its acquisition of certain assets of NCR Corp.’s (NYSE:NCR) self-service entertainment DVD kiosk business. However, it expects the purchase to reduce earnings per share by 40 to 50 cents. “With the closing of the NCR transaction, we have strengthened our ability to bring the value and convenience of Redbox entertainment to new retail partners and their customers,” said J. Scott Di Valerio, chief financial officer of Coinstar, Inc. “While we expect to incur losses during the initial period, as we swap out the acquired kiosks for new Redbox kiosks, we expect the economics to improve and become accretive sometime in 2013.”
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Wall St. Brief: Facebook LOVES Women, Murdoch MULLS Split, Coke STORMS India
Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) got rid of its boys club and named its powerful COO Sheryl Sandberg as a board director. The news comes after reports that the company desired to expand its board members including the addition of a woman.
Rupert Murdoch is considering a split of his News Corp. (NASDAQ:NWS) into two companies; one will focus on publishing and the second one on entertainment, reported the Wall Street Journal. Internal discussions are supposedly in the advanced stage. The move comes as shareholders have been asking to separate the film and TV operations from publishing for awhile, which has been affected by scandal and a slowdown by the industry.
As top banks slash assets for tougher capital requirements, smaller banks are picking up the slack, reported Bloomberg. JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM), Bank of America (NYSE:BAC), Citigroup (NYSE:C) and Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) saw lending fall 4.9 percent on the year to $3.04 trillion in the first quarter as loans at the 17 smallest firms in the KBW Bank Index (NYSE:BKX) jumped 9.8 percent to $1.27 trillion.
Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO) has more than doubled is India investment plans as it tries to capitalize on the fast-growing non-alcoholic drink market. The company now plans to spend $5 billion there by 2020 as opposed to its previous plan of $2 billion by 2017. The investment is the “core” for Coca-Cola to achieve its doubling revenues target in this decade.
Vivendi (VIVHY.PK) will appeal the EUR 765 million ($956 million) in damages awarded to Liberty Media (LMCA) for its breach of contract and fraud suit. The case came from a stock swap that followed Vivendi’s 2001 USA Network purchase from Liberty Media.
HOT Early Movers: Facebook Jumps 2%, Orbitz Targets Wallets of Apple Users
Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) shares over 2 percent in early trading. The social company announced that chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg is joining its board of directors. “Sheryl has been my partner in running Facebook and has been central to our growth and success over the years,” said CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a press statement. “Her understanding of our mission and long-term opportunity, and her experience both at Facebook and on public company boards makes her a natural fit for our board.”
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares edged slightly higher before the opening bell. Orbitz Worldwide Inc. (NYSE:OWW) announced it has found that people who use Apple Mac computers spend as much as 30 percent more per night on hotel rooms, when compared to Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows users. Thus, the travel agency is beginning to show Mac users more expensive options when viewing travel options.
JPMorgan Chase and Co. (NYSE:JPM) shares gained almost 2 percent in early trading. The bank was upgraded by Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS), citing near term earnings and a favorable risk/reward ratio. JPMorgan is expected to earn $5.32 per share in 2013.
Shares of News Corp. (NASDAQ:NWS) surged nearly 8 percent in early trading. The company is reportedly considering splitting into two companies, dividing its entertainment businesses from its publishing operations. The WSJ reports, “The split would carve off News Corp.’s film and television businesses, including 20th Century Fox film studio, Fox broadcast network and Fox News channel from its newspapers, book publishing assets and education businesses. News Corp.’s publishing assets include The Wall Street Journal, the Times of London and the Australian newspaper, as well as HarperCollins book publishing. If a separation occurs, the publishing company would be far smaller than the entertainment company.” A final decision has not been made yet.
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Sun Healthcare TARGET of Investigation and 3 Hot Stocks in Our Sights
Sun Healthcare Group Inc (NASDAQ:SUNH): The law offices of Howard G. Smith reports that it is looking into possible claims against the Board of Directors of Sun Healthcare Group, Inc. regarding the suggested acquisition of Sun by Genesis Healthcare LLC. The deal is valued at around $275M. This case regards whether the Board of Directors at Sun breached their fiduciary responsibilities to stockholders by not adequately shopping the company prior to agreeing to begin the proposed transaction, and whether Sun has revealed all material information to shareholders regarding the transaction. Shares of Sun are flat at $8.35 today.
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ConAgra Foods, Inc. (NYSE:CAG): A consumer fraud lawsuit was filed against ConAgra Foods maintaining that the company’s Hebrew National brand hot dogs are not in fact kosher (as they are labeled). Eleven consumers filed the complaint in May in Minnesota state court, that meat-processing protocol of the company do not meet kosher standards, reports Reuters. Further, the suit alleges that the company did little or nothing” to rectify prior employee complaints about non-kosher meat and even warned or fired those who complained. Shares of ConAgra Foods, Inc. are trading 0.08% higher today.
Red Hat, Inc. (NYSE:RHT) is putting together a partnership with SAP around the use of SAP apps with Red Hat’s virtualization software. This tactic, which concurs with Red Hat reporting pricing for a cloud app development platform, shows how the company is attempting to develop an app infrastructure platform on top of its mainstay Linux software…and therefore contend more immediately with SAP rival Oracle (NASDAQ:ORCL), plus VMware (NYSE:VMW). Red Hat shares are trading 0.39% higher today.
Overland Storage, Inc. (NASDAQ:OVRL) are rising in pre-market trading following is announcement that Administrative Law Judge Charles Bullock of the U.S. International Trade Commission released a 125-page complete version of the Initial Determination, explaining the rationale for a ruling in a patent case. The ITC’s full Initial Determination is undisclosed and only attorneys in the ITC action can review. However, last week, Overland’s lawyers filed an emergency motion with the Administrative Law Judge to attain permission to reveal more information regarding the full Initial Determination. Overland shares are trading 5.15% higher today.
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Facebook ADDS Site Email to Profiles and 4 Hot Stocks to Watch
Bank of America (NYSE:BAC): According to the Wall Street Journal, some major banks have been requested to present road maps by July 1t regarding how they can be swiftly and efficiently liquidated, but Thomas Hoenig, vice chairman of the FDIC, reports that he does not support using the so-called living-will process to disseminate them. Shares of Bank of America are trading 0.31% higher today.
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL): PC manufacturers are suffering from a scarcity of metal chassis and slim panels, according to DigiTimes, referencing sources from the upstream supply chain. At the same time, Apple has reserved most of the supply from makers. Shares of Apple are trading 0.06% lower today.
Facebook, Inc. (NASDAQ:FB): Although Facebook says users were notified of a change in e-mail addresses in April, the Wall Street Journal reports, many users were taken off guard that the e-mail address in their profiles had been changed to having a “@facebook.com” ending.
AT&T, Inc. (NYSE:T) and Motorola are implicated in overseas labor issues that may end up raising American prices, this time with another Chinese factory’s situation under observation. Apple has been the focus of a glaring light regarding unappealing working conditions in that country, with suspicions of other companies’ practices also under consideration. Shares of AT&T are trading 0.34% higher today.
Nokia Corporation (NYSE:NOK) CEO Stephen Elop is suggesting that the company is trying to include PureView camera technology in Windows Phone 8 devices, according to Electronista. Nokia shares are trading 0.46% lower today.
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