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  • Mon, Dec. 5, 8:12 AM
    • Disney's (NYSE:DIS) underperformance this year indicates investor unease surrounding ESPN, says RBC's Steven Cahall. A sale or spin of the unit would thus eliminate an overhang and put Disney more "in-play" for M&A.
    • He thinks Disney may be able to find a financial buyer of ESPN for $22B for an 80% stake, or $2 per share, fully taxed.
    • A strategic buyer, however, might pay considerably more.
    • Cahall's got Sector Perform rating and $101 price target on the stock.
    • Source: Bloomberg
    • In other news, Disney's 'Moana' was the country's #1 film over the weekend, grossing $28M.
    • Shares +0.9% premarket to $99.37.
    | Mon, Dec. 5, 8:12 AM | 22 Comments
  • Sat, Dec. 3, 9:03 AM
    • Rather than chase surging stocks at fancy valuations, the team at Barron's looked for laggards when making its picks, writes Andrew Bary.
    • The names, nevertheless, aren't exactly unfamiliar ones: Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL), Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), Citigroup (NYSE:C), Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL), Deutsche Telekom (OTCQX:DTEGY), Merck (NYSE:MRK), Novartis (NYSE:NVS), Toll Brothers (NYSE:TOL), Unilever (NYSE:UL), Disney (NYSE:DIS).
    • Eight of these ten are trailing the S&P 500 this year, including the three European stocks (Deutsche Telekom, Novartis, and Unilever), and all of the names except Google sell for less than 20x 2017 estimates.
    • At just 10x earnings, Toll Brothers, Citi, and Delta are better ways to play an improving economy than Caterpillar at nearly 30x.
    • As for the "pricey" Google, it's an example of the Buffett maxim that he'd rather buy a wonderful business at a fair price rather than a fair business at a wonderful price.
    • Barron's top picks for 2016 as a group are trailing the S&P 500 by more than 600 basis points.
    | Sat, Dec. 3, 9:03 AM | 67 Comments
  • Fri, Dec. 2, 12:03 PM
    • An all-star team of business leaders has been named to an advisory board that will talk to Donald Trump during his administration.
    • The President's Strategic and Policy Forum will be chaired by Blackstone (NYSE:BX) CEO Stephen Schwarzman. Other members include General Motors (NYSE:GM) CEO Mary Barra, JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) CEO Jamie Dimon, Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) CEO Doug McMillon, Disney (NYSE:DIS) CEO Bob Iger and former Boeing (NYSE:BA) CEO Jim McNerney.
    • The impressive list is a bit short of Silicon Valley leaders, while hedge fund managers are completely MIA.
    • The group is scheduled to meet for the first time in early February.
    | Fri, Dec. 2, 12:03 PM | 63 Comments
  • Wed, Nov. 30, 4:35 PM
    • Walt Disney  (NYSE:DIS) declares $0.78/share semi-annual dividend, 9.9% increase from prior dividend of $0.71.
    • Forward yield 1.57%
    • Payable Jan. 11; for shareholders of record Dec. 12; ex-div Dec. 8.
    | Wed, Nov. 30, 4:35 PM | 46 Comments
  • Wed, Nov. 30, 8:03 AM
    • Disney-backed (NYSE:DIS) streaming TV platform BAMTech may be losing HBO as a customer, according to the New York Post.
    • The premium pay-TV channel is looking to exit its contract sometime next year, which could be prompted by the fact that HBO is owned by Time Warner (NYSE:TWX), which is in the process of being acquired by telecom AT&T. Sources say it is has also been investing in developing its own in-house streaming capabilities.
    • Disney owns a third of BAMTech, but is widely expected to become a much bigger shareholder.
    | Wed, Nov. 30, 8:03 AM | 14 Comments
  • Tue, Nov. 29, 9:43 AM
    • An exclusive live-stream, hosted by People, to be available on Twitter (TWTR +0.9%) and feature a Q&A session with the film's director and select cast members along with unseen Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (DIS +0.5%) content.
    • Coverage to begin Friday, December 2 at 10AM PT.
    • The film itself is set for December 16 release.
    • RogueOne.twitter.com
    | Tue, Nov. 29, 9:43 AM | 25 Comments
  • Mon, Nov. 28, 9:46 AM
    | Mon, Nov. 28, 9:46 AM | 10 Comments
  • Wed, Nov. 23, 11:43 PM
    • Disney (NYSE:DIS) says ESPN lost ~2M subscribers in FY 2016, marking the lowest number of subscribers for the sports network since 2005, according to an SEC filing.
    • ESPN subscriptions fell by 2.2% to 90M for the third straight annual decline, but it's at least a slower rate of decline than 2015's 3.2% fall to 92M and 2014's 4% slide to 95M after peaking at 99M in 2013.
    • Declining income at ESPN weighed on the company's Q4 results earlier this month, as operating income at DIS cable networks fell 13% Y/Y to $1.45B, including a 13% drop in ESPN ad revenue.
    | Wed, Nov. 23, 11:43 PM | 32 Comments
  • Wed, Nov. 23, 4:23 PM
    • Registering a $2.6M night over the $1.3M set by The Good Dinosaur last November.
    • Frozen, retaining the all-time five-day (Wednesday through Sunday) Thanksgiving period record of $93.4M, drew $1.2M from Tuesday previews in 2013. The top record on the benchmark belongs to Despicable Me 2 at $4.7M (July 2013).
    • General estimates for Moana (NYSE:DIS) on the five-day Thanksgiving term range from $75M to $80M, though some peg potential as high as $88M.
    | Wed, Nov. 23, 4:23 PM | 30 Comments
  • Wed, Nov. 23, 9:41 AM
    • From Outperform prior. Target maintained at $63 (current price $60.93).
    • Analyst Daniel Salmon considers CBS fairly valued, to become a "deal stock" regarding prospective Viacom merger and notes several catalysts, including an accelerated buyback, have already been worked through. Would become "fundamentally productive" on shares in the mid-$50s.
    • Ranks "New Media pecking order" as follows – (NASDAQ:FOXA), (NYSE:TWX), (NYSE:CBS), (NASDAQ:VIAB), (NYSE:DIS)
    | Wed, Nov. 23, 9:41 AM | 2 Comments
  • Wed, Nov. 23, 3:40 AM
    • As part of a colossal six-year growth plan, Hong Kong Disneyland (NYSE:DIS), which lost money amid declining attendance last year, is getting a $1.4B expansion.
    • The upgrades will include an entire section themed around Frozen, a first for a Disney park, and multiple rides based on Marvel superheroes.
    • Construction will begin in 2018 and conclude in 2023.
    | Wed, Nov. 23, 3:40 AM | 8 Comments
  • Tue, Nov. 22, 3:37 PM
    • With $4.5B of short interest, Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) leads the way, followed by IBM at $3.7B. Rounding out the top ten: AT&T (NYSE:T), Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT), Chevron (NYSE:CVX), Boeing (NYSE:BA), GE, Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG), Abbot Labs (NYSE:ABT) and Disney (NYSE:DIS).
    • Most interesting from that list are Cat, Boeing, and Abbot Labs as their market caps are significantly smaller than the other seven.
    • Of the top 50 short positions, there are two names in which the short interest rises to as high as 10% of the market cap: Freeport-McMoRan (NYSE:FCX) and Digital Realty Trust (NYSE:DLR).
    • Previously: Goldman's list of stock longs mattering most to hedge funds (Nov. 22)
    | Tue, Nov. 22, 3:37 PM | 17 Comments
  • Mon, Nov. 21, 3:21 PM
    • Disney (NYSE:DIS) moved lower after The Wall Street Journal reported that Amazon is in talks with professional sports leagues about live rights for games.
    • Sources say the company is considering a premium sports package tied to its Prime program.
    • Nothing definitive has been established yet by the Seattle e-commerce giant.
    • Shares of Disney were down over 1% initially after the news broke before recovering back.
    • Previously: Amazon considered to be exploring live sports Prime package (Nov. 21)
    | Mon, Nov. 21, 3:21 PM | 10 Comments
  • Mon, Nov. 21, 3:01 PM
    • Talks with the NBA, MLB, NFL, MLS and elsewhere involving live game rights are reported to have taken place in recent months.
    • Broad and varied interest across offerings is indicated, with scouting for potential content usage from those majors mentioned above, The Walt Disney Company's ESPN (NYSE:DIS) and Univision Communications to ONE World Sports highlighted.
    • Despite various complications revolving around the securing of sports rights, Amazon (AMZN +2.3%) undoubtedly has the platform and potential to make such an effort worth pursuing.
    | Mon, Nov. 21, 3:01 PM | 30 Comments
  • Mon, Nov. 21, 10:09 AM
    • ABC is considering the launch of a new 24-hour digital news channel in 2017, sources tip New York Post.
    • The Disney (NYSE:DIS) property missed out on the election year ratings bump by not having a stand-alone news channel.
    • ABC News chief James Goldston is expected to have a big role in the project.
    | Mon, Nov. 21, 10:09 AM | 8 Comments
  • Sat, Nov. 19, 10:29 AM
    • Disney (NYSE:DIS) announces a summer 2017 opening time frame for Pandora - The World of Avatar.
    • The new themed land is already under construction at the Animal Kingdown park.
    • The company promises more updates on the expansion tied to the movie Avatar in the coming weeks.
    • Disney blog post
    • This week, shares of Disney made a run at closing over $100 for the first time since July before ending the week at $98.24.
    | Sat, Nov. 19, 10:29 AM | 41 Comments