FinancialBuzz.com News Commentary
NEW YORK, July 12, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- U.S. markets opened lower on Monday as investors focused in on the Federal Reserve's announcement regarding expected rate cuts. The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened 177.61 points or 0.6% lower on Monday. Monday's decline continued into Tuesday morning ahead of the Feds testimony. The Dow Jones then slipped by 120 points or 0.5% at the opening bell on Tuesday, leading to a third consecutive day of losses. However, markets quickly rebounded towards the end of Tuesday as investors braced themselves for Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's announcement, which came on Wednesday. Previously in June, the Feds said that it would not increase or slash rates based on the global economic growth. Regardless, on Wednesday, Powell said in front of Congress that the U.S. economy is suffering from uncertainty caused by trade tensions and slower global growth, potentially hinting at a rate cut. Powell announced that the central bank would act in order to support the demand. As such, Powell's comments indicated that a rate cut was impending, which led U.S. markets to surge on Wednesday morning. The Fed then released its meeting minutes from June on Wednesday and showed that Federal Reserve officials were willing to cut interest rates if the economy continued to struggle. The Dow Jones gained nearly 200 points as investor sentiment baked into the markets before, notably, the S&P 500 broke the 3,000 cap for the first time ever, reaching an intraday peak of 3,002 on early Wednesday morning. PepsiCo, Inc. (NASDAQ: PEP), Acacia Communication, Inc. (NASDAQ: ACIA), Levi Strauss & Co. (NYSE: LEVI), Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (NASDAQ: BBBY), Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE: DAL)
Heading into next week, investors are gearing up for the upcoming corporate earnings season. On Monday, major U.S. bank firm Citi (NYSE: C) is set to report. Meanwhile, JPMorgan Chase (NYSE: JPM) and Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) are expected to report on Tuesday. Following the banks, Netflix (NASDAQ: NFLX) is expected to be the first tech giant to report its quarterly results next Wednesday. As of now, investors and analysts will continue to focus in on Powell's announcement at Capitol Hill. "A rate cut in July is now all but certain," Aberdeen Standard Investments Senior Global Economist, James McCann, wrote, according to MarketWatch. "The strength of last week's jobs number did lead some to think that the Fed may pause for thought. It's clear from [Powell's testimony] that they won't. There's an element here of the Fed wanting to take preemptive action," he added. "From an inflation perspective, the picture certainly seems sour enough to warrant a reaction. But from a growth perspective, there's nothing in the data that suggests a rate cut is strictly necessary."
PepsiCo, Inc. (NASDAQ: PEP) reported its second quarter financial results before the market open on Tuesday. The beverage producer topped analysts' expectations and provided an upbeat forecast for the rest of the fiscal year, sending shares roughly 1% higher during Tuesday's pre-market hours. For the quarter, Pepsico reported earnings of USD 1.54 per share on revenue of USD 16.44 Billion. Analysts expected earnings of USD 1.50 per share on revenue of USD 16.42 Billion. The stronger-than-expected quarter was primarily driven by the Company's coffee drinks and water business segments. Additionally, Pepsico launched new product lines such as energy and functional drinks in order to combat the declining soda demand. As for the remainder of the year, the Company forecasts full-year organic revenue to grow by 4%, but expects a decline of 1% in core constant currency EPS.
Acacia Communication, Inc. (NASDAQ: ACIA) announced on Tuesday morning that Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO) intends to acquire the Company for USD 2.6 Billion or USD 70 per share. Acacia announcement sent its shares surging by as much as 35% on Tuesday, pushing the Company's market valuation to USD 2.6 Billion. Cisco plans to support Acacia's existing and new customers that want industry-leading coherent optics, digital signal processing/photonic integrated circuit modules, and transceivers for use in networking products and data centers, according to Acacia's press release. The deal is expected to close during the second half of Cisco's fiscal 2020. Upon completion, Acacia employees will join Cisco's Optical Systems and Optics business within the networking and security business.
Levi Strauss & Co. (NYSE: LEVI) reported its second quarter financial results after the market closed on Tuesday. The jean-maker reported better-than-expected revenue, but missed earnings estimates, causing shares to plummet by 10% at the opening bell on Wednesday. For the second quarter, Levi reported earnings of USD 0.07 per share on revenue of USD 1.31 Billion. Analysts expected earnings of USD 0.12 per share on revenue of USD 1.29 Billion. Revenue rose by % year-over-year due to stronger sales growth in Levi's Asia and Europe markets. Despite Levi's revenue growth, the Company reported that its net income fell by 63% from USD 77 Million to USD 29 Million year-over-year. The revenue growth across Levi's markets was primarily driven by higher revenue across both the Company's wholesale and direct-to-consumer channels. As for the rest of the fiscal year, Levi's expects to reported net revenue growth at the high end of the mid-single digit range and adjusted EBIT slightly up in the range of 10 basis points.
Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (NASDAQ: BBBY) released its first quarter financial results after the market close on Wednesday. Bed Bath & Beyond shares were trading 3.04% higher during Wednesday's extended trading hours. For the first quarter, the Company reported earnings of USD 0.12 per share on revenues of USD 2.57 Billion. Bed Bath & Beyond reached the high-end of its earnings guidance range, while revenue was slightly below its expectations. As for the rest of fiscal 2019, the Company expects net sales in the range between USD 11.4 Billion and USD 11.7 Billion and diluted earnings between USD 2.11 to USD 2.20 per share.
Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE: DAL) reported its second quarter financial results before the market open on Thursday. The company exceeded revenue and EPS expectations. For revenue, the company drew in a record USD 12.5 billion USD, up 8.7% year-on-year, which amounted to USD 1.5 billion in income. Delta also returned USD 497 million to shareholders in Q2, consisting of USD 268 million in stock buybacks and another USD 229 million in dividends. Share value of Delta Air Lines reached a new 6 month high of USD 60.79 on Thursday.
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