Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Stocks to open higher | AT&T sells Hulu stake | Notre Dame fire extinguished - CNBC

Stocks to open higher | AT&T sells Hulu stake | Notre Dame fire extinguished - CNBC


Stocks to open higher | AT&T sells Hulu stake | Notre Dame fire extinguished - CNBC

Posted: 16 Apr 2019 04:05 AM PDT

U.S. stock futures were higher this morning after losses by the major averages on Monday. The Dow has fallen for four of the past six sessions, although yesterday's loss was the result of an 81-point drag from Boeing (BA) and Goldman Sachs (GS). (CNBC)

* Cramer and other experts weigh in on bank earnings (CNBC)

AT&T (T) sold its ownership stake in Hulu to the video streaming service for $1.43 billion, a sale that values Hulu at $15 billion. That leaves Walt Disney (DIS) and NBCUniversal parent Comcast (CMCSA) as Hulu's owners, with Disney owning 60 percent. (CNBC)

* Disney+ is the service Apple wants (CNBC)

Dow components UnitedHealth (UNH) and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) are out with earnings this morning, along with BlackRock (BLK), Bank of America (BAC), and Comerica (CMA), while IBM (IBM), Netflix (NFLX), United Continental (UAL), and CSX (CSX) are out with numbers after today's close. (CNBC)

* J&J earnings: $2.10 a share, vs $2.03 EPS expected (CNBC)
* Bank of America posts another record quarterly profit (CNBC)

On the data front this morning, March industrial production figures will be out at 9:15 a.m. ET. At 10 a.m. ET, the National Association of Home Builders issues its April sentiment index. Separately, Dallas Fed President Rob Kaplan has a public appearance today in New Mexico at 2 p.m. ET. (CNBC)

Paris' Notre Dame Cathedral has been saved from "total destruction," according to a French fire official, after a massive fire ripped through the structure yesterday and caused the roof and main spire to collapse. (CNBC)

* Scenes of Notre Dame Cathedral in flames (CNBC)
* Louis Vuitton and Gucci owners pledge more than $300 million to rebuild Notre Dame (CNBC)

William Weld, the former two-term governor of Massachusetts, announced that he will challenge President Donald Trump for the Republican nomination for president in 2020. "I'm in!" Weld said in a tweet announcing his candidacy. (CNBC)

* Pete Buttigieg raises $1 million within four hours of 2020 campaign announcement (CNBC)
* The EU is not ready to deal with Russian influence in its elections. Here's why (CNBC)

A redacted version of the report by special counsel Robert Mueller is expected to be released to Congress and to the public by the Justice Department on Thursday morning, a day before the Easter holiday weekend. (CNBC)

Mark Zuckerberg oversaw plans to consolidate Facebook's (FB) power and control competitors by treating its users' data as a bargaining chip, while publicly proclaiming to be protecting that data, according to leaked company documents obtained by NBC News.

Elon Musk's SpaceX is raising another $500 million in funding amid internal questions about the viability of an internet-via-satellite business. Musk has been telling investors for years that Starlink is expected to power the company's bottom line. (WSJ)

Another 90 measles cases were reported in the U.S. last week, putting 2019 on track to be the worst year for the disease since public health officials said it was eradicated in 2010, according to the latest data from the CDC. (CNBC)

Walmart (WMT) is finally getting into the subscription business for apparel. The retailer announced it's partnering with Kidbox, a subscription-box company akin to Stitch Fix but focused solely on selling clothes for babies, girls and boys. (CNBC)

* Offering shoppers new experiences isn't helping as malls see tsunami of store closures, falling traffic (CNBC)

Marvel fans are being warned to stay away from social media after leaked footage from the upcoming "Avengers: Endgame" was found circulating online. Screen shots, gifs, short clips, and detailed posts are already surfacing. (CNBC)

J.B. Hunt Transportation Services (JBHT) reported quarterly profit of $1.09 per share, missing the $1.26 consensus estimate, and the trucking and logistics company also so revenue miss forecasts as its volumes were hurt by severe weather conditions in the Midwest.

Chevron (CVX) won a court victory in a case involving Ecuador's attempt to collect a $9.5 billion judgment against the energy giant over pollution. The Supreme Court of the Netherlands ruled against Ecuador's attempt to overturn an international tribunal ruling in Chevron's favor.

Goldman Sachs (GS) will lay off 98 employees in New York, according to a filing with New York State. The filing said the workers are being dismissed for economic reasons, but did not specify where the layoffs would occur within the bank.

Amgen (AMGN) set a list price of $1,825 per month for its Evenity osteoporosis drug. The Food and Drug Administration approved the drug last week, but mandated a so-called "black box" warning about an increased risk of heart attack and stroke.

DowDupont (DWDP) was downgraded to "sector perform" from "top pick" at RBC Capital Markets, which points to macroeconomic concerns for the chemical maker.

Western Digital (WDC) was upgraded to "buy" 'from "hold" at Deutsche Bank, which cites favorable data points in both hard disk drives and NAND flash memory.

Russell Wilson is now the highest-paid player in the NFL, according to ESPN. The Seattle Seahawks and the quarterback have reportedly reached agreement on a four-year, $140 million extension that includes a $65 million signing bonus.

Business news in brief - Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Posted: 16 Apr 2019 11:51 PM PDT

Merger doubts touch Sprint, T-Mobile

NEW YORK -- Sprint and T-Mobile shares dropped Tuesday morning after a Wall Street Journal report cast doubt on the likelihood of government approval of the companies' $26.5 billion merger, but the shares recovered by the close of trading.

The Journal said Justice Department antitrust personnel, who are reviewing the takeover, questioned the companies' reasoning for it in a meeting this month. The report said the government and the companies are still talking. It cited people familiar with the matter.

At one point, Sprint Corp. shares fell more than 9 percent. T-Mobile stock slid almost 4 percent. Sprint stocks closed up 2.2 percent at $6.01; T-Mobile shares closed up 0.42 percent at $74.10.

T-Mobile CEO John Legere tweeted that the premise of the Journal's story, "as summarized in the first paragraph, is simply untrue." That paragraph states that Justice Department staff members told the companies that the planned merger is unlikely to be approved as currently structured.

Wall Street has grown more skeptical of the merger being completed in recent months. House Democrats grilled the companies at a hearing in February.

The Justice Department and the Federal Communications Commission must both approve the deal.

-- The Associated Press

Study: Gays often denied home loans

Gay couples are a lot less likely to be approved for home loans, and they pay more for the mortgages they get, according to a new analysis of more than 30 million U.S. home loans from 1990 to 2015.

Same-sex couples were 73 percent more likely to be denied loans than male-female couples with the same financial profile, according to the study by Iowa State University's Ivy College of Business. The higher fees, an average of 0.2 percentage points, are small for individual borrowers but add up to as much as $86 million a year, according to the research, published by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The penalties aren't limited to LGBT borrowers. As more same-sex couples seek loans in a neighborhood, rejection rates and fees rise for other borrowers, as well.

Although the U.S. has become far more accepting in recent decades, LGBT people are not explicitly protected from discrimination in federal lending laws, and a majority of states don't prohibit housing and accommodation discrimination against LGBT residents.

-- Bloomberg News

Ex-agency chief sees no uranium threat

A former U.S. energy secretary dismissed the idea that an influx of foreign uranium imports is a threat to national security.

"I have never considered uranium to be a major security issue," said Ernest Moniz, who led the Department of Energy under former President Barack Obama. "I think uranium supply -- especially a commodity like that, that you can store lots and lots of it -- I don't consider it to be a driving national security issue."

The Commerce Department, at the behest of two small domestic uranium producers, Energy Fuels Inc. and Ur-Energy Inc., recently concluded an investigation of whether imports of the radioactive metal harm national security. Moniz said the ability to stockpile uranium undercuts the argument from domestic miners that the U.S. relies too heavily on foreign producers for its future supply.

These two companies asked the White House to reserve 25 percent of the domestic market for U.S. producers using the same law that President Donald Trump's administration cited last year to bypass Congress to levy tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.

Nuclear reactor operators, which import nearly all of their uranium from countries including Canada, Russia, and Kazakhstan, argue that such a move could increase their costs by as much as $800 million a year.

If the Commerce Department finds imports of uranium threaten national security, Trump would have authority to impose an import quota or some other trade remedy -- or do nothing at all.

-- Bloomberg News

Drilling near sacred sites irks tribes

SANTA FE, N.M. -- Leaders of the Navajo Nation and Pueblo tribes expressed frustration Monday with federal oversight of oil and gas leases on public holdings near ancient American Indian cultural sites, and they endorsed legislation to restrict natural gas development around Chaco Culture National Historic Park.

Acoma Pueblo tribal Gov. Brian Vallo told members of the House Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources at a hearing in New Mexico that not enough is being done to safeguard sacred sites scattered beyond the national park at Chaco Canyon.

Many of the sites involve more than just physical features that can be surveyed by archaeologists, he said, referring to the less tangible aspects of Chaco.

"Only we can identify these resources," he said.

-- The Associated Press

Netflix adds 9.6 million new accounts

Netflix signed up more new paying subscribers than expected during the first quarter, attracting 9.6 million new accounts during the period -- the biggest addition in the company's history.

The Los Gatos, Calif.-based company reported earnings of 76 cents per share, easily beating guidance of 56 cents per share, with revenue coming in at $4.52 billion, outpacing guidance of $4.49 billion. The results marked significant growth from the year-ago quarter, which saw earnings of 64 cents per share on revenue of $3.7 billion.

Markets tend to watch Netflix's new subscriptions as the most reliable indicator of future profitability. For the quarter, the digital entertainment streaming giant got a record 9.6 million new paying subscribers, up nearly 16 percent from 8.3 million in the year-before period.

Despite the strong results, Netflix shareholders were spooked by less-than-stellar guidance for the second quarter.

Netflix predicted just 5 million new paid subscribers for the quarter, down from 5.5 million in the second quarter of last year. Analysts polled by FactSet estimated nearly 6 million net additions in the second quarter.

The company also forecast earnings of 55 cents per share for the quarter, down from 85 cents in the year-before period.

As a result, shares of Netflix dropped during after-hours trading Tuesday.

-- Tribune News Service

Business on 04/17/2019

Asian Shares Edge Lower Despite Encouraging China GDP Data - U.S. News & World Report

Posted: 16 Apr 2019 08:44 PM PDT

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Asian Shares Edge Lower Despite Encouraging China GDP Data  U.S. News & World Report

TOKYO (AP) — Shares advanced in Asia on Tuesday, led by a rally in Chinese shares. Upbeat talk from the White House on trade negotiations with Beijing and ...

Dow futures higher | Boeing's distress continues | Tiger Woods takes the Masters - CNBC

Posted: 15 Apr 2019 05:15 AM PDT

U.S. stock futures were modestly higher this morning. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq finished Friday trading at their highest levels since Oct. 3, and both have posted three consecutive weekly gains. The Dow is sitting about 2% below its record high. (CNBC)

* Oil edges lower as supply concerns check losses (Reuters)

It's a light day for the U.S. economic calendar, with only the New York Fed's Empire State Manufacturing Index scheduled to be out today. The 8:30 a.m. ET release is expected to show the index rising to 6.0 for April from March's 3.7. (CNBC)

The earnings calendar is also light, but contains several notable names including Goldman Sachs (GS), Citigroup (C), Charles Schwab (SCHW), and M&T Bank (MTB). All will be out before the opening bell, while JB Hunt Transport (JBHT) will be out with numbers after today's close. (CNBC)

American Airlines (AAL) extended cancellations of flight's involving Boeing's (BA) 737 MAX jet through Aug. 19, affecting about 115 flights per day. Southwest Airlines (LUV) on Friday removed the jet from its schedule through Aug. 5. (CNBC)

President Donald Trump's re-election campaign raised more than $30 million in the first quarter of 2019, his campaign said over the weekend. That far outpaces the total raised by individual Democratic candidates during that period. (Reuters)

The Wall Street Journal reported that former Fed officials and foreign central bankers said Trump's combative stance toward the U.S. central bank could over time weaken the institution and its role in the economy.

U.S. negotiators have tempered demands that China curb industrial subsidies as a condition for a trade deal after strong resistance from Beijing, according to a Reuters report, citing two sources briefed on the discussions.

Tiger Woods completed a comeback from personal and professional adversity over the weekend by capturing his fifth Masters title and his 15th major tournament. Woods, 43, became the second-oldest winner of the Masters. (NY Times)

* Adidas may have underestimated Tiger's ability to come back — this private equity firm could win big as a result (CNBC)

Apple (AAPL) is spending "hundreds of millions" of dollars on new video games for its upcoming Arcade subscription service, which was announced last month in Cupertino, according to a report in the Financial Times.

* Huawei is 'open' to selling 5G chips to Apple for iPhones, marking a big shift in strategy (CNBC)

Lyft (LYFT) is recalling several thousand electric bikes in three cities due to some braking issues, the ride-hailing company said over the weekend. The recall affects bicycles in New York, Washington, and San Francisco. (Reuters)

Walmart (WMT) and Kroger (KR) were among retail companies sent letters by the Food and Drug Administration asking for a plan of action to prevent the sale of tobacco products to minors. The agency threatened penalties and fines. (CNBC)

Facebook's (FB) board will be getting a new look, with long-time board members Erskine Bowles and Reed Hastings departing. The company announced that neither would stand for re-election later this year after serving on the board since 2011.

Anheuser-Busch InBev (BUD) has added Citigroup (C) and Bank of America (BAC) to its roster of banks working on a $5 billion Asian initial public offering, according to Reuters. Morgan Stanley (MS) and JPMorgan Chase (JPM) are already participants in the deal.

Alliance Data's (ADS) Epsilon marketing unit will be bought by French advertising giant Publicis for $4.4 billion, in a move to expand its North American presence.

Clovis Oncology (CLVS) is discontinuing trials for a drug that targets bladder cancer, after a review of data showed that the drug may not provide a meaningful clinical benefit.

Waste Management (WM) is near a deal to buy smaller rival Advanced Disposal Services (ADSW) for $2.9 billion or $33.15 per share in cash, according to the Wall Street Journal. That would represent a 22 percent premium over Advanced Disposal's Friday closing price.

Wells Fargo (WFC) was downgraded to "neutral" from "buy" at Goldman Sachs and removed from the "Conviction Buy" list. Goldman questions the bank's ability to meet near-term and long-term financial targets.

Caesar's Entertainment (CZR) will name Affinity Gaming Chief Executive Officer Anthony Rodio as its next CEO and will evaluate takeover interest in the casino operator, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Catalent (CTLT) is near a deal to buy closely held Paragon Bioservices for $1.2 billion, according to the Wall Street Journal. The contract drug manufacturer would expand its presence in gene therapy drugs with the acquisition of Paragon.

I promise, no spoilers. The eighth and final season of "Game of Thrones" premiered last night on HBO, and the hype for Sunday's season premiere was astronomical. Here's a recap of the first episode for those who watched. (USA Today)

Lincoln chosen for jobs initiative for skilled immigrants | Local Business News - Lincoln Journal Star

Posted: 16 Apr 2019 02:00 PM PDT

Lincoln has been chosen to participate in a national program that aims to bring more skilled immigrants to fill local jobs.

The Lincoln Partnership for Economic Development announced Tuesday that Lincoln was one of seven cities chosen for the Global Talent Bridge program run by World Education Services.

The program offers a way for communities to attract those with foreign education and present them with opportunities to work at skilled and in-demand jobs, such as in health care, engineering and manufacturing.

New Americans Task Force will oversee the local program, which has a goal of addressing gaps in the area's workforce while also making Lincoln more attractive and welcoming to immigrants.

The program includes customized technical assistance, administered through hands-on coaching, advising and web-based seminars, to further and enhance the integration of skilled immigrants into the workforce.

"This effort will help us reconnect our newest immigrant and refugee neighbors to their skills and professions," LPED Director of Workforce Development Bryan Seck said in a news release. "I cannot wait to get started on this work and help a person who was a doctor, machinist or lawyer in their home country practice their trade in Lincoln."

The other cities chosen for the program are Anchorage, Alaska; Boston; Des Moines, Iowa; Pittsburgh; Portland, Maine; and San Diego. The entire state of Texas also is participating.

For more information on the program, go to: www.wes.org.

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