Market Focus

Disney

Disney cut one-quarter of its workforce in its interactive division. 700 jobs will be eliminated from the unit, which houses its video games and online properties. Disney Interactive has suffered more than $1 billion in losses in recent years. The move is an effort by Disney to focus more on mobile and social games. Shares rose slightly to $83.34.

DirecTV & Disney

Disney is discussing a deal with the satellite TV provider to license its shows and channels to the company as part of an internet-based TV product. The deal comes just a few days after Disney announced a similar carriage agreement with Dish Network. Shares of DirecTV rose about 2.5 percent to $79.99.

Safeway

Private equity firm Cerberus Capital Management reached a deal to buy supermarket chain Safeway for more than $9 billion. Yesterday there was a rumor that grocery store Kroger wanted to make a bid for Safeway, but Cerberus scored the deal, which was announced after the closing bell. Shares of Safeway fell a fraction to $39.47.

Kroger

Winter weather actually helped Kroger post an earnings beat. Customers hoarded groceries before storms and the chain had shelves stocked, which drove sales higher. Kroger also forecast a higher full-year profit, partly because of its acquisition of Harris Teeter, a local food chain. Still shares fell slightly to $43.37.

Darden Restaurants

Darden Restaurants is cancelling its analyst and investor meeting and will meet investors one-on-one instead. The move comes as activist investors have been pushing the company to make bold moves to increase value, aside from its plan to spin-off its Red Lobster chain. The company believes the small meetings will be more productive. Shares rose two percent to $48.91.

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