Today - Monday, December 9, 2013
9:41 PMGeron presents imetelstat data at ASH, shares rise
- Shares of Geron (GERN) rose 9% in AH trading.
- In a closely watched presentation at ASH, the company reviewed results from a study of imetelstat in myelofibrosis. For reference, see previous coverage of the study here and here.
- Results of GERN independent review of the Mayo study: Remissions (CR+PR) in 5/22 patients; CI in another 4 patients; OR rate of 40.9%.
- Notable: GERN says "no patients with CR, PR, or CI have lost their response to date."
- This is an important study. For more, see the full presentation.
6:58 PMAvan Projects acquires controlling interest in Papa John's Indian franchisee| Comment!
6:57 PMMicrosoft reportedly looking to bring back Windows Start menu
- Paul Thurrott reports Microsoft (MSFT) is looking to bring back Windows' traditional Start menu with its 2015 Threshold OS updates (previous). The company is also said to be interested in allowing users to run (touch-friendly) Metro-style apps in desktop mode.
- Microsoft brought back the Start button with Windows 8.1, but not the full-blown Start menu; a power menu can be accessed by right-clicking the button.
- Meanwhile, Mary Jo Foley reports Threshold could feature the release of three Windows variants (SKUs): A "modern" consumer SKU focused on Windows RT apps and touch devices; a "traditional" consumer SKU meant to placate keyboard/mouse users; and an enterprise SKU featuring "all the usual business bells and whistles."
- The reports come at a time when Windows 8/8.1's adoption rate continues to significantly trail that delivered by Windows 7 following its launch, thanks to minimal enterprise uptake and ongoing complaints about its dual UIs and lack of a traditional Start menu.
6:30 PMU.S. seen becoming net chemical exporter, thanks to shale boom
- The U.S. is poised to become a net exporter of chemicals thanks to the shale oil boom, FT reports; the American Chemistry Council forecasts net U.S. chemical exports of ~$2.7B this year and expects exports to rise 45% over the next five years to nearly $30B by 2018.
- U.S. companies such as Exxon Mobil (XOM), Dow Chemical (DOW), Chevron (CVX) and Phillips 66 (PSX) are among the leaders in investing in new capacity, but even producers from Asia and the Middle East are looking at projects in the U.S.
- Dow's Andrew Liveris speaks for big companies that want curbs on U.S. exports of liquefied natural gas to ensure their energy cost advantage; with five LNG projects now approved for export sales by the Obama administration, "where they are right now seems to be fine," he says.
6:23 PMSenior Salesforce exec leaves for startup
- Hilarie Koplow-McAdams, Salesforce's (CRM) president of global sales, is leaving to become the sales chief of performance monitoring software startup New Relic.
- Koplow-McAdams was in charge of Salesforce's international sales teams. AllThingsD reported two months ago she was looking to leave the company, rather than work for new sales chief/vice chairman Keith Block.
6:12 PMTriangle Petroleum EPS $0.18, beats on revenue| 1 Comment
6:11 PMDeutsche starts coverage on 3D Systems and Stratasys, shares up AH
- 3D Systems (DDD) +0.8% AH and Stratasys (SSYS) +0.9% after Deutsche starts coverage with Buy ratings. Fellow 3D printer maker ExOne has been started at Hold.
- The day has already seen Pac Crest start coverage on 3D Systems with an Outperform and Stratasys/ExOne with Sector Performs, and Nomura argue current industry hype is excessive. Also: Piper's Troy Jensen has issued another bullish industry report after returning from last week's EuroMold trade show.
- Jensen states 3D Systems, which introduced new high-end printers, materials, and software, was by far "the most active at EuroMold with respect to new product introductions." He's especially a fan of a new metal printer from 3D's recently-acquired Phenix Systems unit.
- Jensen also liked Stratasys' launch of a nylon printing material (resellers are upbeat), and says a visit to the HQ of Swedish printer maker Arcam (AMAVF) indicates the company is focused on rapidly expanding (it currently has only 65 employees).
6:00 PMOn the hour
- S&P +0.01%.
- 10-yr +0.02%.
- Euro -0.02% vs. dollar.
- Crude +0.04% to $97.28.
- Gold -0.09% to $1239.3.
5:57 PMWSJ: Shippers Eagle, Genco seeking debt help
- Dry-bulk shippers Eagle Bulk Shipping (EGLE) and Genco (GNK) reportedly have enlisted restructuring advisers after key creditors sold large blocks of debt to distressed investors amid balance sheet concerns.
- EGLE -8.4% AH after falling 7.5% in regular trading, while GNK +6.8% AH after shedding 4.6% during the day.
5:56 PMIcahn Enterprises -7.1% AH, sells 2M depository units| 1 Comment
5:50 PMPep Boys -12.4% AH on weaker-than-expected FQ3
- Pep Boys (PBY) shares plunge 12.4% in AH trading after the company missed expectations in FQ3.
- Revenue fell 0.5% Y/Y to $507M on the back of a 2.8% comparable sales decline (made up of a 0.5% service revenue increase and 3.6% merchandise decrease).
- CEO Mike Odell observed, "As the weather has turned colder, tire sales have started to improve, with mid-level price points and branded tires leading the way. Competitive pressures, however, continue to challenge sales of lower price point tires." The performance of 18 recently-acquired Service & Tire Centers in California "has been ahead of original projections," he added.
- Conference call at 8:30am ET tomorrow, PR
5:42 PMAlon USA jumped 7% today after Deutsche Bank upgrade
- Deutsche Bank upgraded refiners Alon USA Energy (ALJ +7.4%), Valero (VLO), Phillips 66 (PSX) and Delek US (DK) to Buy from Hold, citing a bullish outlook given the over-supply of light sweet crude and the limitation of the crude export ban.
- Cabot Oil & Gas (COG) also is upgraded as shares have lagged due to a combination of regional pricing and growth fears; DB believes both are overplayed and sees the stock as relatively attractive vs. Marcellus peers.
- The firm downgraded Noble Energy (NBL) and Continental Resources (CLR) to Hold from Buy primarily on valuation; NBL remains a best-in-class company but its high quality multi-year program is increasingly understood and de-risked by the Street.
5:36 PMNXP's P-E backers commence 25M-share offering; shares -1.7% AH
- NXP (NXPI) shareholders, including the P-E firms that took the chipmaker public - KKR, AlpInvest, Apax Partners, Bain Capital, and Silver Lake - are selling another 25M shares (9.7% of outstanding shares) through a secondary offering. (PR) (prospectus)
- The P-E firms previously announced 25M-share offerings in September and March, and a 30M-share offering in February. After the latest sale, the firms and affiliates will collectively be left with a 14.8% stake in NXP.