Seeking Alpha
  • Today - Tuesday, April 28, 2015

  • 2:18 PM
    • Rent-A-Center (RCII +10.9%) makes a strong move higher after beating on both lines of its Q1 report.
    • Comparable-store sales for the Acceptance Now program jumped 34.1% during the period with a new 90-day pricing option helping to lift demand.
    • Shares of RCII poked their heads over $30 for the first time since February.
    • Previously: Rent-A-Center beats by $0.02, beats on revenue (Apr. 27 2015)
    | Comment!
  • 1:40 PM
    • Execs with Macy's (M +0.2%) are out showcasing the company's new app which is one of more advanced in the sector.
    • Shoppers can use the app to scan product information, check inventory, and pay for purchases.
    • An image search function matches pictures to clothes the company sells.
    • Beta testing on the use of beacon technology is also in the works.
    • The company also uses its online and mobile channels to test consumer responses to products and drill down to a region by region basis.
    | Comment!
  • 1:21 PM
    • Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (NYSE:FCAU) announces it opened a new facility in Brazil which becomes its largest ever.
    • The plant will be used to manufacture the Jeep Renegade for export across Latin America and has the capacity to handle three separate model lines at once.
    • 650 welding robots are part of the working force at the complex along with 9K employees of the human form from the company and its suppliers.
    | Comment!
  • 1:13 PM
    • Shares of Cal-Maine Foods (CALM +13.4%) fly higher on strong volume in a move that could be ending the dreams of some shorts.
    • Short interest on CALM has been on the rise since January.
    • Volume on CALM is already 2X normal daily activity.
    • On the fundamental side, strong pricing trends and lower feed costs have helped Cal-Maine grow margins.
    | Comment!
  • 12:51 PM
    • Children's Place (PLCE +0.6%) calls on shareholders to reject the board candidates nominated by Macellum and Barington Companies Equity Partners.
    • The company notes it has turned its board over adequately and is on a path to transform into an omni-channel brand.
    • Baringon and Macellm have pushed for a strategic sale or refining capital allocation plans.
    • Shares of PLCE have out-performed the S&P Retail ETF over the last 52 weeks, 28.6% vs. 20.0%.
    • The company's annual meeting is set for May 22.
    | Comment!
  • 12:26 PM
     
    • Some port truck drivers in Long Beach and Los Angeles are on strike for a second straight day, although officials say there hasn't been a noticeable delay in port activity yet.
    • The group is working to be classified as employees, instead of independent contractors.
    • Previously: Freight truckers threatening strike at key West Coast ports (April 27)
    | 1 Comment
  • 11:50 AM
    • Natural Grocers Vitamin Cottage (NGVC +6.8%) trades higher after being tapped by RBC Capital for a run higher.
    • The investment firm initiates the stock with an Outperform rating and $35 price target.
    • Natural Grocers Vitamin Cottage is coming off a quarter of topping estimates for comparable-store sales with a 6.2% mark.
    | Comment!
  • 11:42 AM
    • Execs with Ford (F -0.2%) indicated the back-half of the year should be stronger than the first half during the company's earnings call today.
    • Increased production levels of the F-150 and profitability in Asia are two trends to watch.
    • Profitability in South America and Europe will continue to be pressured by F/X, although it's noted there is some relief on costs for the bottom line due to the swings.
    • Ford's outlook for its 2015 profit margin in North America is raised to +8.5% to +9.5% from +8% to +9% prior.
    • Strong pricing is expected to be a benefit as volume ramps up in the region.
    • Inventory is at targeted levels, notes management.
    • Previously: Ford Motor misses by $0.03, revenue in-line (Apr. 28 2015)
    • Previously: Lower volume and F/X clip Ford's Q1 results (Apr. 28 2015)
    • Earnings call webcast
    | 5 Comments
  • 11:01 AM
    • Goldman Sachs gives a quick lift to Wynn Resorts (NASDAQ:WYNN) with an upgrade on the casino operator to a Buy rating from Neutral.
    • Shares of Wynn are up 1.3% after sitting in negative territory.
    • The current price on Wynn of $130.31 sits on the low end of the 52-week trading range of $121.53 to $222.33
    • Wynn Resorts reports earnings after the bell.
    | 2 Comments
  • 10:52 AM
    • Overstock.com (OSTK -9.6%) trades lower as investors hone in on the 20% increase in sales and marketing expenses and a 25% gain in G&A/technology costs during Q1.
    • Gross profit rate during the quarter increased 10 bps to 18.9%.
    • The contribution margin rate was flat Y/Y at 11.9%.
    • Previously: Overstock.com misses by $0.09, beats on revenue (Apr. 27 2015)
    | Comment!
  • 10:45 AM
    • Stepan (SCL +13.2%) soars after topping the consensus Q1 EPS mark by a healthy margin.
    • Volume was up 2% during the period and F/X cut six percentage points off of growth.
    • The company made strides with cost cutting as the selling expense category fell 8.1% Y/Y to $12.997M.
    • Previously: Stepan beats by $0.33, misses on revenue
    | Comment!
  • 10:37 AM
    • Shares of Fresh Del Monte (FDP -8.4%) retreat after the company misses Q1 EPS estimates by a wide margin on revenue growth of 2.7%.
    • Sales in North America were up 5.3% Y/Y to $575.6M.
    • The company spent more money than expected to procure bananas, while grape and tomato quality issues also arose.
    • Operating income fell 13.7% to $56.3M.
    • Previously: Fresh Del Monte Produce misses by $0.13, revenue in-line
    | Comment!
  • 10:27 AM
    | Comment!
  • 10:06 AM
    • Wendy's (WEN -0.5%) has hired a chief concept officer tasked with leading its innovation strategy.
    • Kurt Kane was hired away from Pizza Hut where he held a similar position.
    • A store re-imaging strategy launched by Wendy's last year has paid dividends in recent quarters.
    | Comment!
  • 9:58 AM
    • Box office forecasts from Wall Street for Star Wars: Episode VII range between $1.75B to $2.0B in a development that's not unwelcome news to the exhibitor sector (CKEC, AMC, CNK, RDI, MCS).
    • Entertainment publications peg their box office predictions even higher, with some seeing #1 Avatar ($2.788B) and #2 Titanic ($2.187B) in range to be reeled in on the all-time box list.
    • The J.J. Abrams-directed film debuts on December 18, 2015 to give theater chains a good two-week Q4 boost.
    • The YTD U.S. box office tally stands at $3.227B with 197 films released.
    • Another company looking for Episode VII to be a major blockbuster and rev up interest in standalone Star Wars films is Hasbro (HAS -0.3%) which holds the key toy license.
    • Related: Disney gets afternoon rise as 'Star Wars' event launches (Apr. 16 2015)
    | 5 Comments
  • 9:38 AM
    • MGM Resorts (MGM) sends a letter to shareholders in advance of the company's annual meeting set for May 28.
    • The board indicates it will "actively evaluate" all strategic options including a REIT conversion.
    • In response to attacks from activist investor Land & Buildings on performance, MGM notes its stock has beat the returns of the Dow Jones U.S. Gaming Index over a 1-year and 3-year time frame.
    • Land & Buildings has a conference call scheduled for April 30 to discuss the "urgent" need for changes with the board. Don't expect the firm to pull any punches.
    • The looming presence of L&B and MGM's higher percentage of Las Vegas revenue has helped its shares outperform peers Las Vegas Sands and Wynn Resorts over the last month.
    | 1 Comment
  • 9:23 AM
    • Good Times Restaurants (NASDAQ:GTIM) launches a public offering of 2.375M shares.
    • The company plans to use the funds to help pay for the acquisition of small chain Bad Daddy's Burger Bar and fund development.
    • There are ~9.45M shares of Good Times Restaurants in the hands of shareholders at the moment.
    • GTIM +0.4% premarket to $8.32. YTD +19.1%.
    | Comment!
  • 9:09 AM
    • Jamba (NASDAQ:JMBA) takes another step in its shift to a self-described "asset-light" model with the refranchising of stores in California.
    • The company aims to generate $30M to $40M in cash this year from the move to refranchise a group of stores.
    • Over time, Jamba expects 90% of its stores to run under the franchise setup,
    | Comment!
  • 9:06 AM
    | Comment!
  • 9:02 AM
    • Supervalu (NYSE:SVU) reports identical-store sales for the Save-A-Lot network rose 3.6% in Q1.
    • The Retail Food segment saw identical-stores sales increase 1.1%.
    • Gross profit rate +20 bps to 15.1%.
    • SG&A expense rate +20 bps to 12.0%.
    • Operating earnings rate +10 bps to 3.2%.
    • Previously: SUPERVALU beats by $0.03, misses on revenue
    • SVU -1.3% premarket.
    | Comment!
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