Shares of Ulta Beauty (ULTA) sank in trading on Monday due to allegations that the company resells used cosmetics. A class action lawsuit was filed against the company in Chicago federal court and reported by the Chicago Tribune. In the lawsuit, a woman claimed that the company is selling used cosmetics to customers without notifying them of the practice. In addition, former ULTA employees have also tweeted alleging the same thing. Shares of ULTA closed down -4.15% at 209.48 after the news. Keep an eye on the stock as this story is developing.
Shares of Qualcomm (QCOM) were volatile again in trading on Friday as traders continue to speculate on the likelihood of Broadcom gaining agreement from shareholders to buyout the company for a combined total of $82 per share in cash and stock. Qualcomm already rejected the hostile bid, so now Broadcom is seeking to woo shareholders into voting in favor of the merger at their meeting on March 6th. Thus far, speculation has yielded volatile trading as news continues to trickle in on the sentiment of shareholders. As of late Sunday evening, it was reported that Broadcom has secured as much as $100 billion in debt funding for its bid. QCOM shares closed at 63.99 for the session, up +2.52%. Keep an eye on the stock as this potential merger develops.
Shares of Woodward, Inc. (WWD) rose sharply in trading on Thursday on speculation that the company was a buyout target. Various commentators speculated on the matter, specifically naming Boeing as the likely buyer. However, others noted that Boeing was more likely to partner with the company as opposed to buying it out. Nevertheless, to most some kind of deal seemed likely since Boeing was reported to be in talks with the manufacturer. WWD shares closed up +7.46 to settle at 82.93 for the session. Keep an eye on the stock as this story is developing.
Shares of Weight Watchers (WTW) rose +17.30% on Wednesday after revealing their plans to rebrand the company. Shares closed at 73.97 for the session. The company plans to offer teens free memberships starting this summer, and the company will have a new program that is more flexible than previous plans. They project that the new plan will help to grow their revenue by over $2 billion by 2020. Keep an eye on the stock as more volatility is probable.
Shares of Nvidia (NVDA) were volatile on Tuesday in part due to continued negative comments by Andrew Left of Citron Research. Left has been a critic on NVDA since last year, most arguing that the company will lose value due to the slowing sales of video cards for the use of mining Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. However, so far, NVDA has mostly been able to hold up its value, but volatility noticeably increases each time Left makes comments. NVDA shares are still near the all time high reach in January, and are mostly down due to the overall market selloff. Nevertheless, keep an eye on the stock as Citron’s comments seem to be causing some to stay away from the stock, and others to sell it. NVDA shares closed at 225.58, up +5.56% on the market rebound.
Shares of 21st Century Fox (FOXA) rose briefly in trading on Monday after it was reported that Comcast was considering topping Disney’s bid for the majority of the company’s content. Disney had made its bid to purchase said content for $52.4 billion back in December 2017, but Comcast is now considering bidding even higher. So far, that greater bid has not been made, but we will keep an eye on the situation to see how it develops. Shares of FOXA closed at 36.14, down -1.58% after the massive market selloff that occurred on Monday. Keep an eye on the stock for more volatility.
The cryptocurrency markets continue to slide as regulatory pressures and losses of banking relationships mount. As of the early morning on Monday, Bitcoin is trading neither -12% as investors have significantly curbed their appetite to buy the world’s most popular cryptocurrency brand. This of course is a sharp contrast to the record-setting pace of new investors entering into the space during the strongest part of last year’s rally which ended with Bitcoin reaching nearly $20,000 in December. Many exchanges at the time decided to halt new registrations, stating that they were overwhelmed by the demand. At the same time, as noted in previous articles here, regulators continued to seek to rein in speculation by the average investor.
Nevertheless, during this very period of dramatically increased regulatory intervention and exchanges curbing new registrations for their trading platforms, we nevertheless saw a massive increase in issuance of the cryptocurrency call Tether. Tether is described by its creator, Tether Limited, as a being a cryptocurrency that is “100% backed” by USD cash reserves. But as was mentioned in a previous article, there remains substantial doubt that such reserves equal the sheer amount of Tethers issued, especially given the great increase of regulatory and banking barriers that came to be since April of 2017. It should also be noted that at this stage all major US banks have blocked the use of their credit card products for the purchase of cryptocurrencies, including JP Morgan, Bank of America, Citigroup, Discover and Capital One.
Ultimately, this casts a huge shadow over the future viability of the vast majority of cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin itself. While is seems likely that some of the current batch of over one thousand cryptocurrencies and utility tokens will survive to be utilized on a wide scale, many seem painfully out of step with the arguments forwarded by early speculators as to the value of these products. Ultimately, they will now have to prove their value outside of a speculative bubble. We’ll watch how they perform going forward.
Shares of CDK Global (CDK) sunk sharply in trading on Friday after news hit that Bain Capital and Vista were no longer interested in buying out the company. This also resulted in analyst downgrade ahead of earnings. The company now currently has an average rating of “hold” and an average price target of $76.80. CDK shares closed at 68.50 for the session, down -4.25%
Shares of Qualcomm (QCOM) were volatile in trading on Thursday after a variety of sources stated that Broadcom was considering raising its bid for the company to $80 per share from the previous bid of $70 per share. The last time Broadcom bid to buy Qualcomm, shares were trading below $60 but quickly moved up to nearly $70 on the news. Afterwards, shares stagnated to an average of around $68 per share. There is no definite timeline for a potential follow up offer, but I would expect it to happen between now and early March. Otherwise, it probably will not happen at all. Keep an eye on QCOM for news and keep in mind that a bid of $80 being accepted means that ANY options with a strike price above $80 per share will immediately lose all of their value. QCOM’s board has already stated that they will only accept an offer of $80 per share or more, but a bid close to that number will probably suffice. QCOM shares closed at 66.80 for the session, down -2.12%.
Shares of Tyson Foods (TSN) sunk -3.52% in heavy trading on Wednesday due to a report that the company had colluded with other suppliers to fix the price of poultry. The lawsuit was filed by Sysco Corp. and US Foods Holding Corp., the two largest U.S. food distributors. Pilgrim’s Pride and other suppliers were also named in the lawsuit as co-conspirators in manipulating poultry prices higher. Expect more pressure on TSN shares to push them lower, and at minimum look for increased volatility going forward. TSN shares settled at 76.11.