Market Overview

The Market In 5 Minutes: Jobless Claims Fall Again, Retailers Struggle

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The Market In 5 Minutes: Jobless Claims Fall Again, Retailers Struggle

Macro Focus

Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 3 points to 19,853.00, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 index futures fell 1.75 points to 2,262.25. Futures for the Nasdaq 100 index slipped 6 points to 4,927.75.

Oil prices traded higher as Brent crude futures gained 0.55 percent to trade at $56.77 per barrel, while US WTI crude futures also rose 0.56 percent to trade at $53.56 a barrel.

Initial Jobless Claims for Dec 30 235.0K vs 260.0K consensus estimate. Continuing Claims for Dec 23 2.11M vs 2.05M consensus estimate.

  • The Markit Services PMI for December is schedule for release at 9:45 a.m. ET.
  • The ISM non-manufacturing index for December will be released at 10:00 a.m. ET.
  • The Energy Information Administration’s weekly report on natural gas stocks is schedule for release at 10:30 a.m. ET.
  • The EIA’s weekly report on petroleum inventories will be released at 11:00 a.m. ET.
  • Data on money supply for the recent week will be released at 4:30 p.m. ET.

BZ News Desk Focus

  • Sonic (NASDAQ: SONC) Reports Q1 EPS $0.24 vs. Est. $0.21, Rev. $129.55M vs. Est. $130.7M
  • Walgreens (NASDAQ: WBA) Reports Adj. EPS $1.10 vs. Est. $1.09, Rev. $28.5B vs. Est. $29.2B
  • Macy's (NYSE: M) Cuts FY16 EPS Outlook from $3.15-$3.40 to $2.95-$3.10 vs $3.29 Est.; Nov./Dec. Combined Comps on Owned Plus Licensed Basis Down 2.1% YoY
  • Kohl's (NYSE: KSS) Cuts FY16 EPS From $3.12-$3.32 To $2.92-$2.97 vs $3.94 Est; Kohl's Reports Comps For November/December Combined Decreased 2.1%
  • Sears Holdings (NASDAQ: SHLD) Obtains $500 Million Secured Loan Facility Maturing July 2020

Sell-Side Themes

Berenberg initiated coverage of Hershey (NYSE: HSY) at Sell and Mondelez (NASDAQ: MDLZ) at Buy.

Wedbush downgraded BJ's Restaurants (NASDAQ: BJRI) and Buffalo Wild Wings (NASDAQ: BWLD), but upgraded Chipotle (NYSE: CMG) and boosted the price target from $370 to $400.

Sell-Side's Most Noteworthy Calls

  • Citi downgraded Mylan (NASDAQ: MYL) to Neutral.
  • Wunderlich downgraded Tableau Software (NYSE: DATA) to Hold.
  • BMO upgraded Western Digital (NASDAQ: WDC) to Outperform.
  • RBC upgraded Mastercard (NYSE: MA) to Top Pick.
  • Goldman Sachs started Hilton Worldwide (NYSE: HLT) at Buy.

Deal Talk

Shares of Acadia Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: ACAD) spiked higher on Wednesday on unconfirmed takeover chatter. Sources say Pfizer (NYSE: PFE) is in talks to acquire Acadia for $44.00 per share. A spokesperson for Acadia declined comment. Acadia is scheduled to present on January 10 at the JPMorgan Healthcare Conference at 4:30 p.m. ET.

Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) and Forever 21 are said to be considering offers to acquire bankrupt American Apparel, according to sources as reported by Reuters. Next Level Apparel and Authentic Brands Group are also in talks to submit bids for American Apparel, ahead of a Friday deadline, sources said.

In The News

Top U.S. intelligence officials are set to appear before Congress in the first public hearing about Russian interference in the 2016 election. The officials are expected to describe the Russian government’s role in directing a cyber campaign that divulged emails from the Democratic National Committee, Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign and other political organizations, and set off an unprecedented postelection feud between President-elect Donald Trump and the intelligence community he is about to lead.

The makers of precision-guided missiles and bombs are running to keep up with demand as the U.S. military bombards Islamic State from the air. Companies such as Boeing (NYSE: BA), Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) and BAE Systems —which make the precision-guidance kits that carry U.S. missiles and bombs to their targets—are benefiting from the U.S. military’s increased reliance on air power in the Middle East.

Blogosphere

"On its first day back from the holidays, America's auto industry began with a Mexican standoff and ended with Tesla just being off."

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