Market Focus

Darden Restaurants 

Sales at Darden’s Olive Garden and Red Lobster chains continued to slide, dragging down its earnings. Darden said profits fell 35 percent, blaming it on higher costs and expenses. The quarterly numbers included Red Lobster’s results, the chain it is planning to spin-off soon. Darden also issued guidance that missed estimates. The stock tumbled about four percent to $47.58.

CarMax

CarMax reported strong earnings today and its shares zoomed higher. The used car chain posted a 16 percent gain in profits, thanks to higher consumer traffic and pricing. Income in the company’s financing unit rose and so did the number of cars sold. Shares surged 16.5 percent to $52.75.

Shire & AbbVie

Third time is not the charm for AbbVie. Its $46 billion takeover offer for Ireland-based Shire, its third attempt to buy the company was turned down. Shire said the offer undervalued the company and its growth prospects. The drug maker also said the proposal would deny its shareholders the full benefits of its strategy. Shares of Shire popped more than 16 percent to $222.89 AbbVie fell 1.5 percent to $53.30.

Kite Pharma

Kite Pharma soared in its market debut on the Nasdaq. The Biotech company, which is studying a potential immunotherapy cancer solution offered up 7.5 million shares priced at $17 a piece. Investors snatched them up sending the stock up more than 70 percent to $29.

Molson Coors

Shares of Molson Coors hit a record high after Morgan Stanley upgraded the stock. The firm raised its price target by about $20 to $79 a share and changed the beer maker’s rating to “equal weight” from “underweight.” The analyst cited valuations and improving fundamentals. The stock closed at $74.86, an increase of more than two percent.

RadioShack 

It was a historic day for RadioShack, but not in a good way. The stock traded below $1 for the first time ever as investors continue to worry about the electronic retailer’s struggles. The New York Stock Exchange can delist a stock if it closes below $1 for 30 consecutive trading days. Shares closed at 92 cents, down more than 10.5 percent.

GE & Alstom

It looks like General Electric is the winner in the battle for French conglomerate Alstom. The French government is backing GE’s bid and has also said it will buy a 20 percent stake in Alstom. Siemens and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries upped their bid today in an effort to win the company but to no avail. Alstom still has to approve the GE’s bid. Shares of GE rose a fraction to $26.97.

Owens Corning

Owens Corning saw its shares fall after the company lowered its outlook for the year. It blamed the disappointing guidance on continued weakness in its roofing business. The stock dropped six percent to $38.81.

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