Seeking Alpha

Breaking News

  • Wednesday April 16, 7:11 PM ET
    • Kinder Morgan's (KMI) Q1 earnings fell 1.7% and missed estimates, while Q1 earnings at its Kinder Morgan Partners (KMP) affiliate slipped 5% and El Paso Partners (EPB) also posted a Y/Y decline.
    • KMP, which holds the majority of KMI's assets, had reported strong profit growth in recent quarters; KMP's earnings more than doubled in 2013, while KMI enjoyed a sixfold increase in net income last year.
    • But "we had a very good quarter," Chairman/CEO Richard Kinder said in the earnings call, as the company highlighted the success of its natural gas pipelines segment, which saw earnings grow more than 40% to $564M.
    • Kinder said analysts’ projections that U.S. demand for natural gas could rise by a third by 2024 as “a little understated," touting demand for gas for LNG exports, electric generation, industrial use and shipment to Mexico as factors that bode well for the company’s future.
    [Energy, Earnings] 3 Comments
  • Wednesday April 16, 7:03 PM ET
    • Six weeks after reporting PlayStation 4 sales had topped 6M, Sony (SNE) announces sell-through has surpassed 7M.
    • Software sales (inc. both physical and digital copies) have topped 20.5M. They were at 13.7M six weeks ago.
    [Tech] Comment!
  • Wednesday April 16, 6:56 PM ET
    • "Facebook (FB) is not one thing. On desktop where we grew up, the mode that made the most sense was to have a website ... In mobile there’s a big premium on creating single-purpose first-class experiences," says Mark Zuckerberg in an NYT interview, highlighting his company's focus on unbundling its various services on mobile.
    • The remarks follow a TechCrunch report stating Facebook plans to remove messaging from its core app, thereby requiring users who want the feature to download the standalone Messenger app (and potentially triggering a backlash).
    • Zuck adds Facebook want to "build a pipeline of experiences" for users, and that his company's Creative Labs unit is "[exploring] things that aren’t all tied to Facebook identity." Those remarks arguably speak to the popularity (particularly among certain demographics) of rival platforms that don't require real names.
    • He also suggests he's unfazed by the muted early reception for Graph Search, arguing it's a 5-year project focused more on mobile than PCs (where it launched).
    • Interviewer Farhad Manjoo, discussing Zuck's strategy: "When was the last time you swooned over some new feature in Facebook? ...  The more users you have, the harder it is to innovate, because most will be averse to any change ... By filtering its innovations into new apps that lack an established user base, engineers and designers can take creative leaps that may not have worked if they’d simply been adding features to Facebook’s primary app."
    [Tech] 5 Comments
  • Wednesday April 16, 6:46 PM ET
    • Former Reynolds American (RAI) CEO Susan Cameron will return to the job May 1, succeeding Daniel Delen, who held the position since 2011.
    • Cameron previously served as President and CEO during 2004-11, retiring to the praises of analysts for leaving RAI in good financial shape in an industry that has faced years of declining cigarette sales.
    • Delen will retire and resign from the company's board.
    [Consumer] Comment!
  • Wednesday April 16, 6:42 PM ET
    • China Xiniya Fashion (XNY): FQ4 EPS of $0.14.
    • Revenue of RMB486.9M (-8.6% Y/Y).
    • Press Release
    [Earnings, Breaking News, Consumer] Comment!
  • Wednesday April 16, 6:37 PM ET
    • EOG Resources (EOG) expects a ~$155M non-cash loss during Q1 on the mark-to-market of its crude oil and natural gas derivatives contracts, according to an SEC filing.
    • EOG says the net cash paid for settlements of the derivative contracts in Q1 was $34M, while actual realizations for crude oil and natural gas differ from average Nymex prices due to delivery location and quality adjustments.
    • EOG typically reports its adjusted profit figures that exclude impacts from mark-to-market commodity derivative contracts.
    [Energy] Comment!
  • Wednesday April 16, 6:26 PM ET
    • Noble Corp. (NE+1.4% AH after Q1 earnings surged 70%, beating expectations, as the offshore driller saw new rigs help lift revenues.
    • Noble, with a fleet of ~77 drilling units, says revenues from drilling services, which makes up most of the company's top line, rose nearly 30% Y/Y to $1.2B as several new rigs went into operation and operating days improved.
    • Average daily revenues gained 5% to $223.6K vs. the previous quarter average of $212K, reflecting the addition of premium assets, while fleet utilization rose to 84% in Q1 compared to 82% in Q4 2013.
    • Contract backlog as of March 31 was ~$14.3B, vs. $15.4B as of Dec. 31.
    [Energy, Earnings] 1 Comment
  • Wednesday April 16, 6:21 PM ET
    • Going forward, Google (GOOG) will break out its paid click and cost per click data in more detail, CFO Patrick Pichette states on the CC. Numbers for Google's reporting segments (sites, ad network, etc.) will be given in addition to a company-wide figure. (CC live blog)
    • The remarks come after Google reported disappointing Q1 paid click growth (-1% Q/Q and +26% Y/Y). The numbers might fuel questions about the impact mobile apps (they account for 86% of U.S. smartphone activity, per Flurry) are having on search activity. When indirectly asked about the issue, sales chief Nikesh Arora only said Google is trying to succeed in both realms.
    • Pichette states EPS was hurt by one-time legal and M&A expenses, and that Google's expenses would've been in-line with its targets otherwise.
    • Separately, re/code reports Marissa Mayer is intent on convincing Apple to abandon Google as its default iOS search provider in favor of Yahoo (YHOO). Google's dominant mindshare, together with Apple's Maps experience, might make Cupertino think twice.
    • GOOG now -2.8% AH. Q1 results, details.
    [Tech, Earnings] Comment!
  • Wednesday April 16, 6:04 PM ET
    [Dividends] Comment!
  • Wednesday April 16, 6:03 PM ET
    • Steel Dynamics (STLD): Q1 EPS of $0.16 misses by $0.02.
    • Revenue of $1.83B (+1.7% Y/Y) misses by $30M.
    • Press Release
    [Earnings, Breaking News, Energy] Comment!
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