Market Focus

Apple

Carl Icahn wants candy from Apple. Specifically, he wants the company to spend some more of its cash to buyback $50 billion in company stock. The activist investor revealed he filed a new shareholder proposal with Apple in late November. The fresh detail: his $50 billion pitch is $100 billion less than he suggested in October. That may be because the stock has gone up from when he suggested a repurchase at $525 a share. Shares were off slightly today to $565. 

Disney

Disney is raising its dividend. The company’s board of directors declared an annual cash payout of 86 cents a share, up 15% and payable to shareholders of record at the close of business December 16th. The announcement was made after the market close. Shares finished the regular session slightly higher to $69.97. 

Express

Apparel retailer Express is forecasting a weaker than expected holiday season, due in part to aggressive discounting. The company also reported a third quarter earnings miss and the CEO on a conference call said that he doesn’t expect the promotions to end anytime soon. Shares tumbled 23% to $19. 

General Motors

Hayman Capital has reportedly taken a stake in GM. The hedge fund believes shares of the automaker could rise by more than 40% over the next 12 to 18 months. GM is said to be one of Hayman Capital’s largest investments. General Motors popped nearly 2% to $38.71.

Bob Evans

Higher prices and remodeling costs weighed on Bob Evans second-quarter earnings. The food and restaurant company reported that profits plunged 46 percent. It also gave a weak outlook for the upcoming fiscal year. To counter slowing sales, the chain has tried to bump up menu prices and remodel eateries, tacking on extra costs. The stock dropped 5% to $52.33.

Las Vegas Sands 

Standard and Poors upped its credit rating on Las Vegas Sands. The ratings service did not quite lift the stock to investment grade, but it predicted a stable outlook for the world’s largest casino. That sent shares up almost 4% to $74.51. 

CGI Group 

The famous short seller, Jim Chanos, has reportedly taken a large short position in CGI Group. A subsidary of CGI Group is the company behind the plauged rollout of Healthcare.gov. Reports of the short against the tech firm sent its shares down more than 3% to $34.99.

AutoNation

The nation’s largest dealership chain, AutoNation reported a 13% gain in new vehicle sales for November. Demand for domestic, import and luxury cars all rose by double digits. AutoNation’s CEO says Black Friday powered the sales gains. The stock jumped nearly 3% to $50.21.

This entry was posted in Market Focus. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply