The $19 billion WhatsApp deal could become the Facebook founder's legacy . . . or his albatross.
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Shares of Craft Brewers Alliance, maker of Redhook, hit a 52-week high yesterday while most stocks tumbled.
By Jake Lynch, TheStreet
U.S. stocks fell yesterday, bringing this week's decline in the S&P 500 Index ($INX) to 4% on fears of a Greek default. Meanwhile, Craft Brewers Alliance (HOOK), a collection of regional breweries including Redhook, recorded a 52-week high. The Portland, Ore., company's shares have tripled since the stock market's low in March 2009.
Craft Brewers, which also produces Widmer and Kona beer, has grown in popularity during the economic recovery. Despite its market value of only $85 million, Craft is the eighth-largest U.S. brewer, based on domestic shipments. The company has a distribution partnership with Anheuser-Busch InBev (BUD), which owns 36% of Craft's shares.
The beer company's other major holders are insiders. Company executives rank as the second-, third- and fifth-largest shareholders. Insider ownership is an encouraging sign, as is the stock's price. Its trailing price-earnings ratio of 38 reflects a premium of 115% to its peer average. But a price-book ratio of 1.1, price-sales ratio of 0.7 and price-cash-flow ratio of 8.2 reflect discounts of 77%, 78% and 34% to respective beverage industry averages.
ConAgra's relatively small drop Thursday shows an appetite for safe, slow-moving food and beverage stocks.
By Jim Cramer, TheStreet
Of all the companies that reported quarterly earnings recently -- Nike (NKE), Adobe (ADBE), Bed Bath & Beyond (BBBY), Oracle (ORCL), Darden (DRI), even Research In Motion (RIMM) -- only one stands out as a clear miss, a disappointment: ConAgra (CAG).
The company -- which has a mosaic of what I regard as second-rate brands, including Healthy Choice, Slim Jim, Chef Boyardee, Hunts, Wesson, Banquet and Pam -- failed to deliver at multiple levels. As a Wall Street Journal headline stated: "ConAgra earnings, sales drop."
The company took some shares, but when you read between the lines, you have to conclude that, of the major packaged-goods companies, including McCormick (MKC), which reported yesterday, ConAgra was among the worst we've seen.
Weinstein gets a new lease on life in a deal with Goldman Sachs and insurance company Ambac.
But the company had to give up 200 of its 350 films to do so.
A federal court in Wisconsin on Wednesday approved a deal in which the insurance company Ambac would pay $115 million of Weinstein’s debt to Goldman Sachs and Assured Guaranty.
The remainder of the debt is being exchanged for 200 TWC movies, including the $233 million in accounts receivable on the films.
Chinese stocks are falling despite the country's currency appreciation.
End of the yuan-to-dollar peg? China's currency to appreciate? That story is so last week!
The stock market action in China over the last couple of days is back to the same old, same old: Worries over global economic growth; worries that China's government will pull in the reins on lending again; and worries that China's banks won't be able to raise all the capital they need.
Nothing much has changed despite Beijing's move to let its currency appreciate -- in a very controlled fashion, amounting almost certainly to no more than 2% to 3% in 2010. If you're an investor waiting for an end of China's bear market in stocks, you're still waiting for a resolution to the same fundamental stories. (For more on the limits to China's decision to let the yuan fluctuate in price, see this post.)
Always on the prowl for more ways to get revenue, airlines are now selling primo spots for boarding.
I thought we had seen every possible fee an airline could think of, but a new one is gaining in popularity: a fee to cut in line.
If you pay an extra $10 to $30, some airlines will let you in the front of check-in, boarding and even security lines, The Wall Street Journal reports.
That's what the Journal calls "a new low." And while I'll be the first to admit that it's cheesy, I'll probably be the first to do it, because I can't stand waiting in lines.
Best Buy, Darden Restaurants and Duke Energy have increased their payouts as of this week
After a volatile May, many folks are looking to companies that pay a regular dividend as a way to limit their risk and provide a bit of steady income.
While it’s important that the payout be substantial in these type of income investments, it’s also important for investors to focus on stocks raising dividends, because this helps guarantee that a company won’t leave shareholders in the lurch and slash payouts when times get a little tough.
After all, if you buy in for the quarterly payday, the last thing you want is for your holdings to slash their dividend payouts or let them languish without any increases.
One columnist likes the potential of the company that runs ShopNBC.
The company runs ShopNBC, which is the third-largest home shopping network in the country after QVC and HSN. Its revenue last year was $530 million.
The stock has been all over the place, Altucher writes, going from $14 in late 2006 to 20 cents when the market crashed. It's not for the faint of heart. But here are the reasons why Altucher likes it:
The automaker moves toward its IPO with an investor meeting and a registration statement.
By Ted Reed, TheStreet
With its biggest shareholder strongly motivated to get out, General Motors is moving rapidly towards an IPO.
"This is an unusual IPO in the sense that most of the owners want out quickly," said veteran industry analyst Joe Phillippi of AutoTrends Consulting. "For the government, the investment is a political bone of contention, so the faster they can be gone, the better off they will feel."
General Motors has scheduled a financial conference for Tuesday, where CFO Chris Liddell and others will provide an update on GM's global business.
The government wants to teach us how to manage money. Hopefully not by example.
Yep, the federal government wants to teach people how to save. The same federal government projected to run a $1 trillion-a-year deficit for the next decade.
So please, Uncle Sam, teach me how to manage money and then turn me loose inside Macy's (M). I'll probably need a bailout a few hours later.
A bitter malaise is infiltrating all facets of American life, from the president on down -- and it's awful for the market.
By Jim Cramer, TheStreet
I heard it five times this week, twice Tuesday in a Wall Street bar, two times during the day chatting with investors and then last night at dinner with a pal, an old pro trader from down the block.
All said the same word, as if programmed, like pod people in "Invasion of the Body Snatchers." The word? Malaise.
All the people who used this term were older friends from my trading days; wizened veterans of other terrible markets; and, of course, people who came of age during the Jimmy Carter years.
The unlamented president talked about the malaise in America and how the country was going in the wrong direction, coincidentally in large part because of failed energy policies that produced gas lines and a lack of energy independence.
The company now has a 20% weighting in the index.
Apple now has a 20% weighting in the index, notes the Bespoke Investment Group. But that weighting is a little skewed, thanks to Microsoft (MSFT). Huh?
Not to get too technical here, but the Nasdaq-100 is a modified capitalization-weighted index. That allows the index to cap the weighting of the largest stocks so they don't take over.
After a steep sell-off, evidence suggests stocks are set to resume their climb.
It's been a tough start to the week for the stock market. After an impressive run higher from its June 8 low, the S&P 500 topped out Monday after China decided to reform its currency policy. Since then, the index has moved down to lose 4.1% in early trading today.
So was that it? Just another dead-cat bounce within a downtrend measured from April's highs? Or is this just a temporary pullback within a new uptrend? So far, the evidence suggests the more optimistic scenario is playing out. And that makes the current dip a fantastic buying opportunity.
One measure of breadth -- or the net number of advancing stocks -- is forming what the late technical analyst Kennedy Gammage called a "buy spike" pattern. Translation: After an initial move higher that established that the bulls were in charge, stocks have pulled back to present latecomers with a low-risk entry point.
An expert discusses the potential impact of the unpegged yuan.
Written by Douglas Estadt
Dr. Eric Jackson of Ironfire Capital LLC joins us to discuss the potential impact of the unpegging of the Chinese yuan to the dollar and to give us an update on his China picks. Dr. Jackson highlights the potential of certain stocks and gives us details of what is new on his radar in China:
- Orient Paper Inc. (AMEX:ONP) had positive quarter earnings that he anticipates will continue to improve.
- China-Biotics Inc. (Nasdaq:CHBT) recently reported results, and net sales increased 50%.
The British are planning budget cuts and new taxes. What if they don't work?
Maybe it's their weather. But for whatever reason, the Brits are really good at creating dystopias, those worst of all possible worlds.
1984. A Clockwork Orange. And now finance minister George Osborne's austerity budget.
The plan, announced Tuesday, projects roughly $170 billion a year in budget cuts and new taxes that are expected to reduce the United Kingdom's budget deficit from 10% of GDP this year to roughly 2% of GDP by 2015.
Warren Buffett's company could have been out millions of dollars if France had won.
Was Warren Buffett watching when France lost to South Africa in the World Cup this week? His company had $30 million riding on the game.
Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.B) sold insurance to a client that would have required it to pay big money if France won the tournament, Bloomberg reports. France was the 1998 tournament champion.
"I think we're going to lose 30 million bucks or something like that" if France wins, Buffett told CNBC in March. He didn't say who the soccer-loving mystery client was.
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With sales suffering as a string of novelty menu items missed the mark, the fast-food chain's latest offering is a good old-fashioned sandwich with bacon.
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- Precious metals traded higher today as a weaker dollar index boosted prices.
- Apr gold rose for a third consecutive session and climbed as high as $1371.30 per ounce in late afternoon pit trade. It settled at $1370.60 per ounce, booking a gain of 1.8%.
- May silver came off its session low of $20.95 per ounce set moments after floor trade opened. It touched a session high of $21.43 per ounce and settled with a 2.6% gain at $21.36 per ounce.
- Apr ... More
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