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Trump administration reportedly holds off on auto tariffs, for now

5 hours ago

The Trump administration will hold off on imposing tariffs on auto imports for the time being, Bloomberg News reported Tuesday night. Trump and his top trade advisers met Tuesday to discuss a draft report by the Commerce Department on the national security implications of auto tariffs, Bloomberg reported, and agreed to hold off on tariffs at least until the report could undergo revisions. For months, President Donald Trump has threatened tariffs of up to 25% on foreign autos, and reports that they were being considered again hurt shares of foreign automakers in Tuesday trading. Japanese shares of Toyota and Honda both jumped more than 1% in early Wednesday trading following the Bloomberg report.

MoviePass parent delays reverse stock split

6 hours ago

Helios & Matheson Analytics Inc. , which owns MoviePass, revealed in a regulatory filing Tuesday that it has delayed a vote on a second reverse stock split. According to the filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the company believed that it did not have support for the plan, which sought to avoid delisting of its stock for continuing to trade for less than $1. "The Board cancelled the Special Meeting because it does not expect to have the requisite stockholder votes to approve the proposed reverse stock split at the Special Meeting or to adjourn the Special Meeting," the filing reads. The spectacular rise and fall of MoviePass has left Helios & Matheson grappling for a solution, which includes a plan to split off the movie-subscription business into an independent entity. Shares closed Tuesday at less than 2 cents apiece.

3M board OKs $10 billion share buyback program, dividend

8 hours ago

3M Co. said late Tuesday its board of directors has authorized the buyback of up to $10 billion of 3M's shares, replacing the company's existing repurchase program. In the same statement, the company said its board declared a dividend of $1.36 a share for the fourth quarter of 2018. The dividend is payable Dec. 12 to shareholders of record on Nov. 23. 3M shares rose 0.8% in the extended session after closing 0.7% higher during the regular trading day.

Deputy NSA Ricardel may be fired after clash with First Lady: report

9 hours ago

Deputy National Security Adviser Mira Ricardel may be fired,The Wall Street Journal reported, citing an unnamed White House official. Ricardel had clashed with First Lady Melania Trump over issues including seating on the trip to Africa as well as the belief Ricardel was the source of negative stories. Earlier the First Lady's office had issued an unusual, public statement saying Ricardel "no longer deserves the honor of serving in this White House." According to the report, she also repeatedly clashed with Defense Secretary Jim Mattis.

O'Reilly ups share buyback, agrees to buy assets in South Florida

9 hours ago

O'Reilly Automotive Inc. said late Tuesday its board of directors has authorized an increase of $1 billion in the auto parts retailer's share buyback program, raising the authorization to $11.75 billion. In the same statement, O'Reilly said it has agreed to buy all of the auto parts-related assets of privately held Bennett Auto Supply, Inc. of Pompano Beach, Fla. The asset buying is expected to be completed by the end of the year, O'Reilly said. Bennett operates 33 stores in southern Florida, O'Reilly said. Shares of O'Reilly were flat in the extended session and rose 2.3% in the regular trading day.

Blue Apron stock declines after revenue miss

9 hours ago

Blue Apron Holdings Inc. shares declined in the extended session Tuesday after the subscription meal service posted revenue that fell below Wall Street estimates and said it was laying off staff. Blue Apron shares fell 5% after hours, following a 2.4% decline to close the regular session at $1.22. The company reported a third-quarter loss of $33.9 million, or 18 cents a share, compared with $87.2 million, or 47 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Revenue declined to $150.6 million from $210.6 million in the year-ago quarter. Analysts surveyed by FactSet had forecast a loss of 22 cents a share on revenue of $157.9.million. Blue Apron said it was laying off 4% of its workforce to speed up its path to profitability in 2019, and said its Chief Marketing Office Jared Cluff no longer worked at the company.

SurveyMonkey parent posts narrower Q3 adjusted loss

9 hours ago

Shares of SVMK Inc. rose 0.3% in the extended session Tuesday after the parent company of SurveyMonkey Inc. reported adjusted third-quarter results above expectations. SVMK said it lost $102.4 million, or 99 cents a share, in the quarter, compared with a loss of $13 million, or 13 cents a share, a year ago. Adjusted for one-time items, the company lost one penny a share. Revenue rose 18% to $65.2 million from $55.3 million a year ago as "strength across the business drove our results," the company said in a statement. Analysts polled by FactSet expected an adjusted loss of 5 cents a share on sales of $62.9 million. GAAP EPS loss was seen at 94 cents. "We are off to a great start as a public company resulting from our strong execution and focus," CEO Zander Lurie said. The company said it expects fourth-quarter revenue between $64.8 million and $66.8 million, and revenue between $251.2 million and $253.2 million for 2018. SVMK had its initial public offering in September. Net proceeds from the IPO and private placement totaled $225.3 million, the company said. The stock lost 1.8% in the regular session Tuesday.

Dow extends decline to a 3rd session in a row as oil prices log worst day since 2015

9 hours ago

The Dow and S&P 500 on Tuesday finished an up-and-down session lower, extending a rout that kicked off a day ago, after crude-oil prices registered their worst daily drop in more than three years. The sharp declines in oil have weighed on market sentiment, raising concerns about global economic growth, and dragged the energy sector lower. A popular gauge of energy, the Energy Select Sector SPDR ETF , finished down 2.4%. The S&P 500 index closed off 0.2% at 2,722, marking its fourth straight decline, with the energy and health-care sectors leading the day's losses. The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended 0.4% lower at 25,286, driven lower by a sharp decline in shares of Boeing Co. , after a report by the Wall Street Journal indicated problems with part of its fleet of jets. The Nasdaq Composite Index , meanwhile, ended Tuesday trading flat at 7,200. Meanwhile, West Texas Intermediate for December delivery settled 7.1% lower at $55.69 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, marking its sharpest one-day fall since September 2015, registering its 12 consecutive loss and deepening the commodities stunning slide into bear-market territory, defined as a drop of at least 20% from a recent peak.

Former CEO fined $1.5 million by SEC for tipping pro baseball players with inside info

10 hours ago

The Securities and Exchange Commission settled its insider trading charges against James V. Mazzo, the former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Advanced Medical Optics, Inc. who agreed to pay $1.5 million for allegedly tipping information about his company's acquisition to his close personal friend, former professional baseball player Doug DeCinces. The SEC alleged Mazzo provided DeCinces with material, nonpublic information about the potential acquisition of AMO by Abbott Laboratories, Inc. The SEC's complaint said DeCinces bought AMO securities numerous times after communicating with Mazzo about the progress of the merger talks and then allegedly tipped five more of his friends, including a former Baltimore Orioles teammate and a businessman, Dave Parker for a trading gain of over $1.3 million for DeCinces another $1 million in gains for his friends. DeCinces and four of his tippees already settled the Commission's insider trading claims against them. The SEC's litigation against Parker is continuing. Mazzo neither admitted nor denied the allegations and also agreed to a five-year officer-and-director bar.

U.S. oil prices end at lowest in nearly a year, down 12 straight sessions

11 hours ago

U.S. oil futures logged their lowest settlement in almost a year on Tuesday, dropping roughly 7% to stretch a record losing streak to a 12th session in a row. With discussions between major oil producers over the weekend over a possible production cut doing nothing to stop the slide in oil, "we need to look to technical levels to see how far traders will push down prices," said Owen Williams, founder of Williams Market Analytics. "We believe that oil prices are overshooting to the downside, as economic deterioration ... is not yet a concern and supply fears are overblown." On Tuesday, however, December West Texas Intermediate oil dropped $4.24, or 7.1%, to settle at $55.69 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. That was the lowest finish for a front-month contract since Nov. 16, 2017, according to FactSet data.

Italy keeps rejected spending targets, reigniting fears of EU face-off: reports

11 hours ago

The Italian government failed to produce a revised deficit target requested by the European Commission, with Rome officials instead saying they would stick to a budget deficit that is 2.4% of gross domestic product and economic growth that is a 1.5% of GDP for its 2019 budget plan, according to Bloomberg News. Italy was slated to resubmit a new proposal on Tuesday with a failure to do so likely intensifying a dispute with the European Union because the original draft ran afoul of eurozone fiscal rules. Citing an official from the far-right League, Bloomberg said the Italian government will defend its proposal, which had already been rejected by eurozone officials. The 10-year Italian government bond yield was flat at 3.450%, while the 10-year German bond yield was up 2.2 basis points to 0.410%. The euro strengthened against the U.S. dollar, rising 0.4%, with the dollar changing hands at $1.1261, compared with with $1.1220 late Monday.

EIA forecasts U.S. shale oil output to climb by 113,000 barrels a day in December

11 hours ago

Crude-oil production from seven major U.S. shale plays is forecast to climb by 113,000 barrels a day in December to 7.944 million barrels a day, according to a report from the Energy Information Administration released Tuesday. Oil output from the Permian Basin, which covers parts of western Texas and southeastern New Mexico, is expected to see the largest climb among the big shale plays, with an increase of 63,000 barrels a day in December from November. December West Texas Intermediate oil continued to drop, down $4.10, or 6.8%, at $55.83 a barrel ahead of its settlement on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Starbucks cutting 350 corporate jobs

12 hours ago

Starbucks Corp. confirmed on Tuesday that it is cutting 350 corporate jobs across areas including marketing, creative, product, technology and store development. This is about 5% of the company's global, non-retail workforce. The cuts come after months of consideration about how to get the company back to growth and create shareholder value. "Building the next chapter of Starbucks requires us to focus on fewer priorities and transform our functional teams work in order to accelerate the velocity of innovation that is relevant to our customers, inspiring to our partners, and meaningful to our business," wrote Chief Executive Kevin Johnson in an email to staff obtained by MarketWatch. Starbucks shares are up nearly 18% for the year to date while the S&P 5500 index is up 2.2% for the period.

Pandora expands podcast inventory, creates Podcast Genome Project for recommendations

12 hours ago

Pandora Media Inc. on Tuesday announced that it was expanding its podcast inventory and creating a new recommendation tool that will allow users of the music streaming service to better locate podcasts that could be of interest to them. The company created the Podcast Genome Project, a play on its Music Genome Project recommendation algorithm for songs, that will enable podcast discovery through Pandora. "We think podcasts represent a fast growing market in terms of listeners but it suffers from a couple of problems, including that discovery is very rudimentary and there is nothing personalized about it," Pandora Chief Executive Roger Lynch told MarketWatch. He said that the company will categorize podcasts through a number of segments, which will also help it sell the genre to advertisers. Sirius XM Holdings Inc. is planning to acquire Pandora, and Lynch said that "spoken-word content" is a "natural area of cooperation" for the two companies. Pandora shares are up 2% in midday trading Tuesday, while the S&P 500 is up 0.4%.

General Electric bonds slammed as company unveils plan for Baker Hughes

12 hours ago

General Electric Co.'s bonds fell sharply Tuesday, a day after a sharp rout of its stock price, after the company agreed to sell a roughly $4 billion stake in energy company Baker Hughes. The company has been under pressure for the past two years after a series of missteps, that has led to its stock being ejected from the Dow Jones Industrial Average amid several changes of CEO. GE accounted for the top 3 most actively traded bonds in early afternoon trade, according to trading platform MarketAxess. GE's 4.418% notes that mature in November of 2035, were down about 2 points to 81.767 cents on the dollar, according to MarketAxess. On a spread basis, the bonds were trading at 285 basis points over comparable Treasurys, about 21 basis points wider on the day. The 5.000% notes that mature in January of 2049 were about 34 basis points wider on the day, and the 3.373% notes that mature in November of 2025 were about 23 basis points wider on the day. GE's shares were up 11%, rebounding from a roughly 7% loss on Monday.

Citi to move 1,100 workers out of Long Island City tower to free up space for Amazon

13 hours ago

Citigroup Inc. said Tuesday it will move about 1,100 of its workers out of the One Court Square tower in Long Island City in the New York borough of Queens in the first half of 2019 to free up space for Amazon.com Inc. to establish its New York headquarters. Citi currently occupies about one million square feet in the building and is speeding up plans to move workers to its Tribeca Headquarters in Lower Manhattan and other locations. The bank has about 3,000 employees in the Long Island City tower. Citi Chief Executive Michael Corbat said the building was the tallest in Queens when it was constructed 30 years ago. Today it a "bustling, vibrant" community, he said in a statement. Amazon announced earlier that it has selected Long Island City and Arlington County, Va. as the sites for its planned second headquarters. Amazon shares were slightly higher Tuesday, and have gained 40.4% in 2018, while the S&P 500 has gained 2.3%.

PG&E stock extends losses on wildfire fallout

14 hours ago

PG&E Corp. shares fell more than 3% Tuesday to hover at their lowest since mid-October 2008 amid scrutiny over the role some of the company's power lines may have played in a deadly Northern California wildfire that is only 30% contained. According to several news outlets, the company reportedly knew of problems with its power lines in the area. Shares of PG&E on Monday ended at their lowest since October 2008. The wildfire has killed at least 42 people and is the deadliest in California's history.

British pound rallies as U.K. and EU agree to avoid hard Irish border: report

14 hours ago

The British pound extended its gains on Tuesday as U.K. and European Union officials found an agreement to avoid a so-called hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, according to Ireland's national radio and television broadcaster RTE. The report said negotiations regarding the border had concluded. Earlier, Bloomberg reported that a deal on the so-called backstop could be reached within the day. The border debate has long been one of the most controversial issues hamstringing the negotiations between the U.K. and the European Union. Sterling extended its rally and climbed to $1.3005 on the back of the report, versus $1.2851 late Monday in New York. The euro-sterling pair weakened 0.7% to £0.8672. The U.K.'s main stock benchmark, the FTSE 100 was flat at 7050.95 following the report, while the yield for the 10-year British government bond was up 6.9 basis points to 1.510%, according to Tradeweb data.

Maine Republican sues to block ranked choice count

14 hours ago

Maine Republican Rep. Bruce Poliquin has filed a federal lawsuit to stop tabulation of what are called ranked-choice ballots in his race against Democratic challenger Jared Golden, the Portland Press Herald reported. Poliquin has a slight lead over Golden, but neither candidate has exceeded 50%, and Maine laws call for the reallocation of the candidates who weren't in the top two.

Caterpillar's stock pares gains after October retail machinery sales report

15 hours ago

Shares of Caterpillar Inc. rose 1% in morning trade, but pared earlier gains of as much as 2.2%, after the machinery maker reported October retail sales growth that continued to decelerate. Total retail sales of machines for the 3-month rolling period rose 18% from a year ago, compared with 21% growth in September and a 23% increase in August. Total resource industry machine sales jumped 46%, after rising 47% in September and 35% in August, while construction industries sales decelerated to 12% growth from 16% in September and 215 in August. Energy and transportation retail sales was up 7%, matching September's growth but down from 16% in August. Within energy and transportation, power gen sales rose 13%, industrial fell 11%, transportation declined 27%, and oil and gas increased 20%. The stock has lost 6.3% over the past three months, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has gained 0.3%.

Dow tumbles 160 points in early Tuesday trade as rebound attempt sputters

15 hours ago

The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded more than 100 points lower Tuesday morning, as a tumble in shares of Boeing Co. and Home Depot Inc. put the kibosh on a rebound attempt by the blue-chip index. Boeing's share decline was carving about 80 points out of the Dow after The Wall Street Journal reported that the aerospace company withheld information about a change to its aircrafts, while Home Depot was retreating even after the home-improvement giant reported better-than-expected third-quarter results. Declines in both companies come after the Dow shed more than 600 points amid a internet and technology-related stock-market rout that was partly prompted by sharp declines in shares of Apple Inc. and those for Goldman Sachs Group Inc. . Most recently, the Dow was trading 160 points, or 0.6%, lower at 25,210, the S&P 500 index was down 0.2% at 2,721, while the Nasdaq Composite Index was clinging to a slight 0.1% gain at 7,210. All three benchmarks finished Monday's trade sharply lower.

EverQuote's stock plunges to pace all decliners after results, downbeat margin outlook

15 hours ago

Shares of EverQuote Inc. plunged 39% to new lows in morning trade Tuesday, enough to pace all the decliners listed on major U.S. exchanges, after the recently public online insurance company reported a wider-than-expected loss and provided a downbeat outlook, citing margin compression. The stock recently changed hands at $7.26, or 60% below the initial public offering price of $18. The stock went public on June 28. The company reported late Monday a net loss of $3.8 million, or 15 cents a share, compared with a loss of $604,000, or 7 cents a share, in the same period a year ago. That missed analyst expectations for a loss of 10 cents a share, according to FactSet. Revenue rose 30% to $41.7 million, above the FactSet consensus of $40.9 million. The company said it cut its variable marketing margin outlook for the current quarter and for the year, as challenges in pricing and traffic have compressed margins. J.P. Morgan cut its price target to $19 from $22, and kept its rating at overweight, saying the revenue upside suggests the company is making progress in future opportunities. The stock has plummeted 50% over the past three months while the S&P 500 has slipped 3.4%.

Amazon confirms Long Island City, N.Y., and Arlington County, Va., as its 'HQ2' selections; Nashville facility announced

15 hours ago

Amazon.com Inc. confirmed speculation about the locations for its dual secondary headquarters: Long Island City in the borough of Queens in New York City and Arlington County in northern Virginia. Each is ultimately to have more than 25,000 employees, and Amazon has said it will invest $5 billion on the new locations. Amazon will receive $1.525 billion in performance-based incentives for creating 25,000 jobs in Long Island City. Amazon has agreed to donate space for a tech incubator, for artist and industrial business use, and for a primary or intermediary public school. In National Landing in Arlington, Va., Amazon will receive $573 million in performance-based incentives, and a cash grant from Arlington of $23 million over 15 years based on incremental growth of a tax on hotel rooms. Virginia will invest $195 million in infrastructure. In Nashville, Tenn., meanwhile, Amazon said it would create a new Operations Center of Excellence" responsible for customer fulfillment, transportation, supply chain and other activities. Amazon said it will create 5,000 full-time jobs and invest more than $230 million. Hiring for all locations is to get under way in 2019. The jobs created are expected to have an average salary of $150,000, according to the company. Amazon shares have rallied more than 40% in 2018, while the S&P 500 index is up 2.3% for the period.

U.S. stocks attempt slight rebound from tech and internet-related rout

16 hours ago

U.S. stock benchmarks Tuesday fought to gain traction higher after an ugly start to the week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 55 points, or 0.2%, at 25,437, the S&P 500 index rose 0.6% at 2,742, while the Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 1% at 7,275. All three benchmarks fell sharply on Monday, with the Dow plunging more than 600 points, on the back of sharp declines in shares of Apple Inc. and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. . Market players attributed Tuesday's tepid optimism to apparent progress in trade talks. The Wall Street Journal reported that Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin spoke with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He on Friday about a deal to ease trade tensions, ahead of a meeting between President Donald Trump and President Xi Jinping, set for the end of November at the G-20 summit in Buenos Aires. Meanwhile, shares of Home Depot Inc. were in focus after the home-improvement company and Dow component reported better-than-expected quarterly results. However, shares were down 1.4% as a call to discuss results with analysts was under way.

Apple's stock falls after Goldman cuts price target, iPhone unit estimates

16 hours ago

Shares of Apple Inc. dropped 1.4% in premarket trade Tuesday, after Goldman Sachs slashed its price target by 13% and cut iPhone unit estimates in the wake of a profit and sales warning from supplier Lumentum Holdings Inc. . Analyst Rod Hall lowered his price target to $209 from $240, and reiterated the neutral rating he's had on Apple since Feb. 6. He cut his fiscal 2019 revenue outlook by 3.5% to $269.94 billion, which compares with the FactSet consensus of $280.5 billion; he lowered his earnings estimate to $13.00 from $13.44, while the FactSet consensus is $13.45; and reduced his total iPhone units estimate by 6%, as declines in iPhone XR/XS Max/XS unit estimates offsets increases in lower-priced iPhone units. Apple's stock had tumbled 5.0% to a 3 1/2-month low on Monday, after Lumentum cut is earnings and revenue outlook after it recently received a request from "one of our largest" customers to "materially reduce shipments" of laser diodes for 3D sensing, and Lumentum has disclosed in the past that Apple was its largest customer. Sanderson said he's concerned Lumentum's warning suggests demand for new iPhone modes is deteriorating. "We note this could easily right itself given the bulk of demand comes in late December but we feel more prudent sell through forecasts are warranted due to the timing and magnitude of this warning," Sanderson wrote in a note to clients. Apple's stock has shed 16% since its Oct. 3 record close of $232.07 through Monday, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has lost 5.4% over the same time.

Baxter board approves $2 billion increase to share buyback authorization

16 hours ago

Baxter International Inc. said Tuesday its board has approved a $2 billion increase to its share buyback authorization, bringing the total available to $3.4 billion. The medical products company's shares were up 1.1% premarket, but have fallen about 5% in 2018, while the S&P 500 has gained 2%.

Alibaba's stock price target cut at MKM, but analyst remains bullish

17 hours ago

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.'s stock price target was cut to $245 from $270 at MKM Partners analyst Rob Sanderson, citing the postponement of monetization efforts as management braces for a possible economic slowdown. The new target was still 72% above Monday's closing price of $142.82, and Sanderson reiterated his buy rating on the China-based e-commerce giant. "Our forecast reflects an outlook where consumption growth slows but does not collapse..., priority investments are funded while others are scrutinized and ecosystem health is a great focus for management," Sanderson wrote in a note to clients. The stock rose 1.4% in premarket trade, after falling 6.8% the past three sessions. It has shed 20% over the past three months through Monday, while the S&P 500 has slipped 3.4%.

Small-business sentiment declines in October to four-month low, NFIB says

20 hours ago

The National Federation of Independent Business small-business optimism index declined 0.5 point to a seasonally adjusted 107.4 in October, a four-month low. The biggest declines of the 10 components that make up the index came from questions on expansion and earnings trends, while the only gain came from plans to increase inventories. The NFIB said "the October report sets the stage for solid growth in the economy and in employment in the fourth quarter, while inflation and interest rates remain historically tame."

British pound pops on report of progress on key Brexit sticking point

17 hours ago

The British pound strengthened against the U.S. dollar and the euro on Tuesday following a Bloomberg report saying the U.K. cabinet expected a Brexit backstop text to be completed within the day. The backstop refers politicians trying to avoid a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. The border debate has long been one of the most controversial issues hamstringing the negotiations between the U.K. and the European Union. Should a text on the backstop be completed today, cabinet would approve it Wednesday or Thursday this week, according to the report. Sterling rallied sharply to $1.2973, versus $1.2851 late Monday in New York, while the euro-sterling pair weakened 0.5% to £0.8685.

Green Organic Dutchman posts loss for third quarter, expects international sales in Q4

17 hours ago

The Green Organic Dutchman Holdings Ltd. said Tuesday it had a net loss of $11.3 million for the three months ended Sept. 30 and a loss of $27.1 million for the nine-month period. The medical cannabis company did not offer any sales numbers for the quarter, but said it expects international sales to start in the fourth quarter. Meantime, it said it's on track to launch commercial production at its Hamilton, Ontario and Valleyfield, Quebec facilities in the first half of 2019, after deploying C$33 million ($25 million) in capex in the third quarter. The company is expecting to have 170,000 kilograms of annual cannabis capacity across Jamaica, along with scalable hemp in Poland. The company is still negotiating supply and distribution agreements across Canada and plans to expand across Jamaica, Europe and Latin America. The company has raised more than $450 million to fund its plans. Shares were not active premarket, but have fallen 29.7% in the last three months, while the S&P 500 has fallen 3.4%.