Market Focus


Aetna says it expects to lose money on the new health exchanges. The nation’s third-largest insurer reported earnings that trailed estimates and said so far, customers signing up for the new health plans are slightly older and therefore more expensive. The stock missed out on today’s rally, falling slightly to $67.92.


Investors were disappointed that LinkedIn’s revenue forecasts for the current quarter and for 2014 were lower than expected. The company posted an earnings beat, but shares sold off after hours. In the regular session, shares were up four percent to $223.45.

Monster Worldwide

It was a different story for job search site, Shares soared on a good earnings report, thanks to increased demand in North America and Europe. Monster also re-purchased $46 million of its stock in the quarter. Shares rose about 23 percent to $7.24.


Revenues at AOL jumped 13 percent last quarter, helped by higher global sales. But earnings missed estimates because of restructuring charges, mostly related to the sales of its Patch local news network. The Patch sale was an attempt to move into ad-supported content. AOL slipped a fraction to $47.15.

Dunkin’ Brands

Dunkin’ Brands brewed up an earnings beat as traffic and spending rose at its chains. The parent of Baskin Robins and Dunkin’ Donuts was helped by strong sales of iced coffee and breakfast sandwiches. Dunkin’ also upped its dividend and issued a positive forecast. Shares rose more than three percent to $48.89.


Cereal sales are still soggy, which is eating away at Kellogg’s revenue. The company did swing to a profit, thanks to a restructuring.  The snack and cereal maker has a four-year cost-cutting program in place, under which it will cut about seven percent of its workforce by 2017. Shares rose slightly to $57.74.

Kohl’s, Costco, L Brands & Ann Inc. 

A handful of chain stores updated investors on January sales. The parent company of Victoria’s Secret’s, L Brands, said January same-store sales were up nine percent, crushing consensus. Kohl’s reported a decline in same-store sales and cut its profit forecast for the fourth quarter. Warehouse retailer, Costco, said sales rose four percent last month, beating estimates. And, Ann Inc., owner of Ann Taylor, says it expects gross margins for the quarter to be higher than the prior year. Shares of all four retailers rose in today’s session. L Brands finished at $53.98, Kohl’s closed at $51.55, Costco ended at $114.26 and Ann Inc. closed at $32.67.

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