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Intuitive Surgical Soars as Earnings Blow Past Expectations
Shares of Intuitive Surgical soared on Wednesday making it TheStreet's Move of the Day. The maker of da Vinci Surgical Systems reported earnings of $3.73 a share, crushing analysts' expectations for the company to profit $2.82 a share, after shipping nine more of its systems than the prior quarter and said it will be transitioning its business to a direct market in Japan. CEO Gary Guthart said in a statement: "We launched our newest platform, the da Vinci Xi Surgical System and the market reception for it has been very positive. Also during the quarter, we strengthened our direct presence in both Japan and Europe." TheStreet's Joe Deaux reports from New York.
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Owens-Illinois Shares Shatter on Double-Digit Drop in Glass Sales
Shares of Owens-Illinois dropped on Wednesday making it TheStreet's 'Move of the Day.' The manufacturer of glass bottles and containers said it anticipates lower-than-expected earnings in its September-ending third quarter. Over that period, profits are forecast to fall 5% year-over-year to roughly 75 cents a share. Analysts had expected an average 88 cents a share in profits. Ohio-based Owens-Illinois suffered lower sales over the quarter, including a low single-digit drop in sales volume in North America and a double-digit decline in the Asia-Pacific. Owens-Illinois is scheduled to report its third quarter in late October.
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Blue Chips Close at Record High as Fed Delivers Rate Expectations
U.S. stocks climbed with the Dow Jones Industrial finishing at new highs Wednesday. The Federal Reserve stuck to its script and reiterated its pledge not raise interest rates for a 'considerable period.' At a news conference after the policy announcement, Fed Chair Janet Yellen said there continues to be significant underutilization in the labor force. Lennar (LEN) gained 5.80 percent in today's session. The homebuilder beat Wall Street's earnings expectations by a landslide. Separately, new data from the National Association of Home Builders showed confidence among the nation's home builders hit a near nine year high. U.S. Steel (X) was another winner, it shot up about 9.65 percent. The company said its Canadian unit is seeking bankruptcy protection allowing it to operate while exploring restructuring alternatives. Adobe Systems sank more than 4.5 percent. Investors didn't like hearing the company saying its fourth quarter will be weak.
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Jim Cramer Thinks Nelson Peltz is Right to Call for DuPont Breakup
Trian Partners, the hedge fund founded by activist investor Nelson Peltz, says chemical giant DuPont is under earning and should split itself up. Jim Cramer says there is a big under current here which is DuPont, under CEO Ellen Kullman, has not been able to sell divisions correctly, there is a lot of fat at the company, between $2 and $4 billion, and she guided down earnings a couple times and that's where Peltz has it right. Cramer says look at Heinz, Kraft and Wendy's - Peltz has brought out tremendous value in those companies. Trian has also tried to gain board representation and Cramer says it sounds like a proxy fight is coming.
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Jim Cramer Says the Fedex Quarter Shows What Drives A Stock Higher
FedEx shares moved higher Wednesday after the company reported a 24% increase in profits for the first quarter, beating Wall Street's expectations. Jim Cramer says that's the kind of quarter he likes to see: revenues up, price increases, margins expanding. He says that's how you get an upside surprise. The stock has now doubled from the bottom. Cramer credits FedEx CEO Fred Smith with cutting the fat and bringing down costs. The company posted a profit of $606 million, or $2.10 a share, up from $1.53 a share in the year-earlier period. The package delivery giant says it plans to increase U.S. shipping rate by about 5% in 2015.
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Breakup Calls Has DuPont Helping the Dow into Record Terrain
Major U.S. markets are swaying to the upside in midday trading Wednesday ahead of the Fed's announcement on interest rates. Dow component DuPont (DD) is pushing the blue chips higher, the stock is up more than 4 percent on news activist investor Nelson Peltz is calling for it to break itself up into two companies. Confidence among the nation's home builders is rising to its highest level in nearly nine years. The National Association of Home Builders Index jumped to 59, that's 3 points higher than expected. President Obama is in Tampa visiting the United States Central Command. He'll be briefed on the latest strategy to destroy ISIS. The time has come for Scotland to decide. The final push to campaign on both sides of Scottish independence are winding down. The historic vote to continue its 300 year union with England will take place Thursday.
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Analysts' Actions: General Electric & GrubHub Initiated, GNC Upgraded
In Wednesday's Analysts' Actions, Stifel Nicolaus starts GE at 'Buy', Goldman Sachs initiates GrubHub and Wedbush upgrades GNC. General Electric (GE) is now being covered at Stifel Nicolaus with a 'Buy' rating and the price target is set at $30. That's about 15 percent upside potential from where the stock is currently trading. The analysts at Stifel Nicolaus think GE's 'recent portfolio will bring strong growth in 2015'. Goldman Sachs initiated coverage of GrubHub (GRUB). The firm is starting the food delivery site with a 'Neutral' rating and giving a $44 price target. Goldman thinks GrubHub has 'the most at scale platform of food delivery websites.' GNC (GNC) is upgraded at Wedbush to 'Outperform' from 'Neutral' with the price target increased to $46 from $36 a share. The analysts at Wedbush think the health specialty retailer 'reduced its promotions and faces easier near term comps.'
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Traders Await the Fed as Stocks Open Little Changed but in the Green
U.S. markets opened slightly higher Wednesday as traders wait to see what the Federal Reserve has to say on interest rates. They'll get their answer at 2 pm eastern when the decision is announced. Stocks turned higher in premarket trading when the Consumer Price Index came out showing a decline last month. The Labor Department said consumer prices fell for the first time in 16 months, dropping 0.2 percent. Economist were expecting it to be unchanged. Despite rising rates, mortgage applications surged last week. According to the Mortgage Bankers Association, the rise was mostly driven by refinances. Earnings are a driver for some stocks this morning. FedEx (FDX) is starting the day higher after beating estimates before the bell. General Mills (GIS), on the other hand, missed Wall Street's expectations. The maker of Cheerios came in short on both the top and bottom lines saying U.S. market conditions are challenging.
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Sears Holdings Tumbles on Eddie Lampert's $400 Million Loan
Shares of Sears Holdings tumbled on Tuesday making it TheStreet's Move of the Day. The holding company for Sears and K-Mart said it had secured a $400 million short-term loan from the hedge fund of its CEO Eddie Lampert. The loan matures by the end of the year, though with no event of default, that could be extended through to the end of February next year. Lampert's ESL Investments provided $200 million on Monday with the remainder to be issued at the end of September. The multimillion-dollar loan concerned investors rattled by mounting losses and desperate attempts to spin off assets. Fitch Ratings recently cut its credit rating due to cash burn.
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Wall Street Turns Decisively Higher Rallying into the Close
A rally on Wall Street to close the trading day Tuesday on a high note. Stocks climbed on a report that China's central bank is boosting stimulus measures. Investors are also betting the Federal Reserve is not in a rush to raise interest rates. The Fed's two-day policy meeting ends on Wednesday. Chair Janet Yellen will hold a news conference after the decision is released at 2 pm, eastern. U.S. crude futures for October delivery rose more than 2% to settle at $94.99 a barrel. Oil prices rose on OPEC saying it may cut supply. Some big names are set to report earnings Wednesday including Fedex (FDX), General Mills (GIS) and Cracker Barrel (CBRL). Before the bell, we'll get the CPI. Then the much-anticipated FOMC statement at 2pm followed by Fed Chair Janet Yellen's briefing at 2:30, eastern.