Hourly In Play (R)

Updated: 18-Jan-18 08:00 ET

 Today's In Play   
07:58  WRAPX S&P futures vs fair value: +1.00. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: -7.80.

Wall Street rocketed to new records on Wednesday, quieting those who believed the new year rally was on the ropes following Tuesday's failed attempt to go higher. Investors have been more reserved this morning, however, with equity futures pointing to a flat open. The S&P 500 futures trade one point above fair value.

Morgan Stanley (MS) reported better-than-expected fourth quarter earnings this morning, joining a group of financial peers that also beat quarterly profit estimates, including JPMorgan Chase (JPM), Wells Fargo (WFC), Citigroup (C), Bank of America (BAC), Goldman Sachs (GS), U.S. Bancorp (USB), and Charles Schwab (SCHW). MS shares are up $0.90, or 1.6%, in pre-market action, trading at $56.25 per share.

Dow components American Express (AXP) and IBM (IBM) will report fourth quarter results following today's closing bell.

In the bond market, U.S. Treasuries are under pressure this morning, extending losses for the week. The yield on the benchmark 10-yr Treasury note is up three basis points at 2.60%--its best level since March 2017. The 10-yr yield challenged that level last week, but pulled back after failing to break through. It will be a key level to watch as skeptics have cited relatively low long-term rates as a sign that the U.S. economy is not as healthy as it may appear.

Meanwhile, West Texas Intermediate crude futures are up 0.2% at $64.07 per barrel. The American Petroleum Institute reported on Wednesday evening that U.S. crude inventories declined by 5.1 million barrels last week. The official weekly government report will be released at 11:00 AM ET.

Investors will receive several economic reports today, including Housing Starts for December ( consensus 1280K), Building Permits for December ( consensus 1290K), weekly Initial Claims ( consensus 251K), and the Philadelphia Fed Index for January ( consensus 24.5). All data will be released at 8:30 AM ET.

Elsewhere, equity indices in the Asia-Pacific region ended Thursday on a mostly higher note, but Japan's Nikkei slipped 0.4%. The Euro Stoxx 50 is up 0.1%.

In U.S. corporate news:

  • Wal-Mart (WMT 104.25, +1.55): +1.5% after Goldman added the company to its 'Conviction Buy List.'
  • Morgan Stanley (MS 56.26, +0.90): +1.6% after reporting better-than-expected earnings and revenues.

Reviewing overnight developments:

  • Equity indices in the Asia-Pacific region ended Thursday on a mostly higher note. Japan's Nikkei -0.4%, Hong Kong's Hang Seng +0.4%, China's Shanghai Composite +0.9%, India's Sensex +0.5%.
    • In economic data:
      • China's Q4 GDP +1.6% quarter-over-quarter, as expected (last 1.7%); +6.8% year-over-year (consensus 6.7%; last 6.8%). December Fixed Asset Investment +7.2% year-over-year (consensus 7.1%; last 7.2%), December Industrial Production +6.2% year-over-year (expected 6.0%; last 6.1%), and December Retail Sales +9.4% year-over-year (expected 10.1%; last 10.2%). December House Prices +5.3% year-over-year (last 5.1%)
      • Japan's November Industrial Production +0.5% month-over-month (expected 0.6%; last 0.6%)
      • Australia's December Employment Change 34,700 (expected 9,000; last 63,600), December Unemployment Rate 5.5% (expected 5.4%; last 5.4%), and December Participation Rate 65.7% (expected 65.4%; last 65.5%). MI Inflation Expectations remained at 3.7%
      • Hong Kong's Unemployment Rate 2.9% (last 3.0%)
    • In news:
      • Chinese equities displayed relative strength after the release of economic data that was mostly better than expected, though December Retail Sales fell short of estimates.
      • Reports from Japanese financial press noted that some Bank of Japan members see the need to discuss future normalization plans, but current stimulus measures are still needed at this time.
      • The Bank of Korea left its base rate at 1.50%, as expected.
  • Major European indices trade in mixed fashion. UK's FTSE -0.3%, France's CAC +0.2%, Germany's DAX +0.4%.
    • In economic data:
      • Investors did not receive any economic data of note
    • In news:
      • The UK House of Commons approved the Brexit bill, which will now head to the House of Lords.
      • Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann said that the increase in Germany's trade surplus results from ultra-loose monetary policy at the ECB. Mr. Weidmann made the comments in response to remarks from IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde, who criticized German households and firms for saving too much.
07:50  WIRES On The Wires

  • Melinta Therapeutics (MLNT) announces that its partner has commenced a new program for a topical formulation of radezolid in preparation for submitting an IND application to the FDA the treatment of patients with bacterial vaginosis.
  • Lonmin Plc (LNMIY) announces that it has obtained in-principle agreement from its lenders, subject to credit approval and execution of the necessary legal agreements, for a further waiver of compliance with its consolidated tangible net worth debt covenants until the earlier of the Offer closing, lapsing or being withdrawn and the current transaction long-stop date of 28 February 2019.
  • Saudi Aramco, through its wholly-owned subsidiary Saudi Aramco Technologies, has signed a three-party Joint Development Agreement with CB&I (CBI) and Chevron Lummus Global, a joint venture between CB&I and Chevron (CVX). The JDA will serve to scale up and commercialize Saudi Aramco's Thermal Crude to Chemicals (TC2C) technology.
  • Aethlon Medical (AEMD) announces that the United States Patent and Trademark Office has allowed U.S. Patent Application Number 14/490,418 ("the '418 Application"), entitled "METHOD FOR REMOVAL OF VIRUSES FROM BLOOD BY LECTIN AFFINITY HEMODIALYSIS." The allowed claims of the '418 Application embody cartridges for the Aethlon Hemopurifier, which removes viral particles from the blood or plasma of infected patients. The '418 Application is a continuation of U.S. Patent Number 7,226,429, which embodies methods of reducing viral loads in the blood of individuals infected with a virus. Together, this intellectual property further protects the Aethlon Hemopurifier and secures Aethlon's position as a leader in pioneering therapeutic strategies to address viral infections.
07:35  LLNW Limelight Networks and Tencent Cloud to provide global content delivery (4.28 )

Under terms of the agreement, Limelight will offer its customers Content Delivery Network (CDN) services in China through Tencent Cloud. Tencent Cloud will offer CDN services from Limelight to Tencent Cloud customers in North America and other global markets.
07:31  SBBP Strongbridge Biopharma announces that the USPTO has entered a Notice of Allowance for U.S. Patent Application 15/088,539 covering the use of RECORLEV (levoketoconazole), a cortisol synthesis inhibitor currently being studied for the treatment of endogenous Cushing's syndrome (7.85 )

The claims of the U.S.patent application entitled, "Methods And Compositions For Treating Diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome And Other Conditions," are directed towards methods of treating Cushing's syndrome with levoketoconazole. This Notice of Allowance concludes the substantive examination of the patent application and should result in the issuance of a U.S.patent after administrative processes are completed. The term of the U.S. patent scheduled to issue from this application will expire January 10, 2026, plus any time allowed for a patent term extension.
07:24  XOG Extraction Oil & Gas reports prelim 4Q17 results, announces $600 mln private placement of senior unsecured notes due in 2026 (14.41 )

Preliminary Fourth-Quarter 2017 Highlights

  • Preliminary estimates for fourth-quarter 2017 average net sales volumes between 65.9 and 66.2 thousand barrels of oil equivalent per day (MBoe/d) including 33.6 to 33.7 thousand barrels per day (MBbl/d) of crude oil. Estimated total equivalent production volumes exceeded the midpoint of the Company's guidance while estimated crude oil volumes were near the upper end of the Company's guidance range; and
  • Turned to sales 75 gross (53 net) operated wells with an average lateral length of approximately 8,500 feet, and completed 42 gross (26 net) wells with an average lateral length of approximately 7,500 feet.
07:22  BBT BB&T Corp: Provides Q1 and FY18 outlook in presentation slides (53.28 )

  • See 6:51 comment for recap of Q4 results.
  • 1Q18
    • Average total loans- Up 1% - 3% annualized vs. 4Q17
    • Credit quality- NCOs expected to be 35 - 45 bps
    • Net interest margin- GAAP margin down 1 - 3 bps vs 4Q17; Core margin stable vs. 4Q17
    • Noninterest income- Up 1% - 3% vs. 1Q17
    • Expenses- Flat vs. 1Q17
    • Effective tax rate- 21%
  • Full-year 2018
    • Average total loans- Up 2% - 4% vs. 2017
    • Revenue- Up 2% - 4% vs. 2017
    • Expenses- Flat vs. 2017
    • Effective tax rate- 21%
07:21  MTB M&T Bank beats Q4 estimates (179.21 )

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $2.48 per share, excluding $0.47/share net in non-recurring items, $0.08 better than the Capital IQ Consensus of $2.40; net interest income and non interest income rose 2.8% year/year to $1.46 bln vs the $1.41 bln Capital IQ Consensus. 
  • Net interest income expressed on a taxable-equivalent basis aggregated $980 million in the fourth quarter of 2017, up 11% from $883 million in the year-earlier quarter. That growth resulted predominantly from a widening of the net interest margin to 3.56% in the recent quarter from 3.08% in the final 2016 quarter.
07:20  SUMRX European Markets Update: FTSE -0.3%, CAC +0.2%, DAX +0.4%

Major European indices trade in mixed fashion with the UK's FTSE (-0.3%) struggling to keep pace with the pack. The index is on track for its fourth consecutive decline after touching a fresh record. The UK House of Commons approved the Brexit bill, which will now head to the House of Lords. Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann said that the increase in Germany's trade surplus results from ultra-loose monetary policy at the ECB. Mr. Weidmann made the comments in response to remarks from IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde, who criticized German households and firms for saving too much.

  • Investors did not receive any economic data of note

---Equity Markets---

  • UK's FTSE is down 0.3% with consumer names among the laggards. Associated British Foods, Merlin Entertainments, Burberry Group, Imperial Brands, Compass, Reckitt Benckiser, and Unilever hold losses between 0.5% and 3.0%.
  • France's CAC has added 0.2%. Carrefour leads with a gain of 2.7% in response to upbeat results. Airbus Group is up 2.5% while financials are mixed. AXA has climbed 2.4% while Societe Generale is down 0.5% and Credit Agricole has shed 0.2%. BNP Paribas trades flat.
  • Germany's DAX is higher by 0.4%. Infineon has spiked 4.6% in response to a Tier 1 upgrade while heavyweights like Adidas, BMW, BASF, Daimler, Siemens, SAP, and Deutsche Bank are up between 0.2% and 1.2%.
07:07  GNC GNC Holdings reports Q4 same store sales for domestic company-owned stores +5.7%, sees Q4 Adj-EPS of $0.24-0.25 vs $0.23 Capital IQ Consensus Estimate (3.47 )

  • "In the fourth quarter of 2017, our efforts to reposition the business continued to gain momentum," said Ken Martindale, chief executive officer. "As we head into 2018, we will continue to focus on our key initiatives including capital structure improvement, international business growth, exclusive and innovative products and services, a more engaging e-commerce and digital platform and further customer experience improvements."
  • As of December 31, 2017, the Company's cash and cash equivalents were $64.0 million and long-term debt was $1.3 billion. The Company paid down the Revolving Credit Facility in the fourth quarter and there were no borrowings outstanding as of December 31, 2017. The Company is reiterating its free cash flow estimate of $190 - $210 million for the full year 2017.
  • The Company does not plan to provide preliminary financial information in the future other than in unique circumstances, or in the event of a material event that requires disclosure.
07:06  CBSH Commerce Bancshares beats by $0.04, misses on revs (58.16 )

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) adjusted earnings of $0.74 per share, $0.04 better than the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.70; revenues rose 7.3% year/year to $314.2 mln vs the $319.6 mln Capital IQ Consensus.
  • There were several extraordinary items which occurred in the 4th quarter, including a previously announced $25 million contribution of appreciated stock to the Commerce Bancshares Foundation and a one-time bonus to certain employees of approximately $3.3 million. These two items combined with adjustments for the new corporate tax legislation added $.12 per share for this period. For the quarter, the return on average assets was 1.50%, the return on average common equity was 14.2%, and the efficiency ratio was 67.9%.
  • "Our net interest margin continued to expand, driven by increased rates on both our loan and investment portfolios, while deposit costs remained stable. We saw strong growth from both our trust and commercial card businesses, which increased 12.9% and 14.3%, respectively, over the same quarter in the prior year. Non-interest expense increased just 2.3% over the same quarter last year when adjusted for the one-time bonus and foundation contribution, as we continue to focus on expenses. This quarter total average loans increased $183.0 million, or 5.3% annualized over the prior quarter, driven by growth in construction, business, business real estate, consumer and consumer credit card lending activities."
  • During the current quarter, the net yield on earning assets (tax equivalent) was 3.29%, compared with 3.18% in the previous quarter and 3.03% in the same period last year.
07:06  PACW PacWest Bancorp reports Q4 (Dec) results (52.38 )

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) GAAP earnings of $0.66 per share, including acquisition costs, may not be comparable to the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.73. 
  • The decrease in net earnings from the prior quarter was due primarily to higher noninterest expense, higher income tax expense and lower noninterest income offset by higher net interest income and a lower provision for credit losses. Noninterest expense for the fourth quarter of 2017 was higher mainly due to an increase in acquisition, integration and reorganization costs of $14.6 million related to the CUB acquisition and integration. Income tax expense for the fourth quarter of 2017 was higher as the third quarter of 2017 reflected a $13.6 million reversal of a valuation allowance related to tax credits, while the fourth quarter reflected a $2.0 million increase in the valuation allowance. Noninterest income for the fourth quarter of 2017 declined mainly due to the tax-related decision to sell certain securities resulting in a loss for the quarter of $3.3 million.
  • Matt Wagner, President and CEO, commented, "Although the fourth quarter included several significant items, the benefits of the CUB acquisition for our future profitability were apparent in our fourth quarter results. Interest income on loans and leases increased 10% over the prior quarter, core deposits increased to 85% of total deposits, and the CUB integration as well as the vast majority of cost save initiatives were achieved in December. We are on track to achieve the remainder of our targeted expense savings during the first quarter of 2018." Mr. Wagner continued, "Our organic loan growth of $684 million in the fourth quarter was the strongest of the year. The fourth quarter sale of $1.5 billion in cash flow loans and the exit from the CapitalSource Division origination operations related to general, technology, and healthcare cash flow loans allows us to focus on profitably growing our other businesses."
07:05  SASR Sandy Spring Banc misses by $0.22, reports revs in-line (40.64 )

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $0.34 per share, $0.22 worse than the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.56; revenues rose 8.7% year/year to $55.79 mln vs the $56.21 mln two analyst estimate.
  • "This has been an outstanding year in terms of core performance and our ability to grow our franchise organically. Even in light of the inclusion of the increased tax expense and merger costs, net income for 2017 reached record levels. Core earnings for the fourth quarter continued to positively reflect the effects of loan and deposit growth that we have been experiencing. With the acquisition of WashingtonFirst Bankshares, which became effective on January 1, 2018, we enter the year as one of the premier banks in the region, and with the same steadfast commitment to delivering personalized service to our clients and serving our communities. It's this commitment that has helped us grow to better serve our clients, employees, and shareholders. We continue to be encouraged by the current economic environment and the prospects for our ongoing growth," said Daniel J. Schrider, President and Chief Executive Officer.
07:05  LITB LightInTheBox Holding opens blockchain technology research lab (2.13 )

The research lab will be composed of both existing in-house talent and new hires with strong backgrounds in blockchain technology. The Company has begun a global search to recruit a head to lead the blockchain technology research lab.
07:04  AKG Asanko Gold announces FY 2017 gold production of 205,047 ounces and Q4 production of 51,550 ounces, in line with 2017 revised production guidance of 205 - 225,000 ounces (0.87 )

Co states, "Discussions with Red Kite are progressing on the refinancing of our existing debt facility and we expect to update the market during Q1 2018 on the outcomes of these discussions, along with the publication of the Project 5 Million Optimized Plan".
07:03  ROSE Rosehill Resources announces year-end 2017 proved reserves rose to 31.1 MMBOE, +135% from 13.2 MMBOE at year-end 2016 (7.96 )

Highlights and Recent Key Items:

  • Increased proved reserves to 31.1 MMBOE (determined under SEC guidelines) with a PV-10 of $368 million at year-end 2017, up 135% and 353%, respectively, from December 31, 2016
  • Proved reserve additions of 21.1 MMBOE resulted in a reserve replacement ratio of 997% (total of extensions, discoveries, revisions, and purchases, divided by annual production using midpoint of 2017 guidance);
  • Year-end reserves had no amounts attributable to the recent White Wolf acquisition in Pecos County, Texas; and
  • Drilling on new White Wolf acquisition acreage to begin in late first quarter or early second quarter of 2018.
07:02  CGEN Compugen presents new preclinical data demonstrating the distinctive features of the PVRIG pathway (2.75 )

The company announced new preclinical data demonstrating distinctive features of the PVRIG pathway and the potential of COM701, a first-in-class therapeutic antibody candidate targeting PVRIG, for treating multiple solid tumors. The data, presented at the Keystone Symposia Conference, A3: T Cell Dysfunction, Cancer and Infection, being held January 16-20, 2018, at the Beaver Run Resort, Breckenridge, CO, provide indication for a dominant role of the PVRIG/TIGIT axis in cancer evasion of immune response in multiple cancers. The data also support the Company's biomarker strategy and clinical development program for COM701, as a monotherapy and in combination treatment with COM902, Compugen's therapeutic antibody candidate targeting TIGIT, and with PD-1 blockers.
07:02  SUMRX Asian Markets Close: Nikkei -0.4%, Hang Seng +0.4%, Shanghai +0.9%

Equity indices in the Asia-Pacific region ended Thursday on a mostly higher note. Chinese equities displayed relative strength after the release of economic data that was mostly better than expected, though December Retail Sales fell short of estimates. Reports from Japanese financial press noted that some Bank of Japan members see the need to discuss future normalization plans, but current stimulus measures are still needed at this time. The Bank of Korea left its base rate at 1.50%, as expected.

  • In economic data:
    • China's Q4 GDP +1.6% quarter-over-quarter, as expected (last 1.7%); +6.8% year-over-year (consensus 6.7%; last 6.8%). December Fixed Asset Investment +7.2% year-over-year (consensus 7.1%; last 7.2%), December Industrial Production +6.2% year-over-year (expected 6.0%; last 6.1%), and December Retail Sales +9.4% year-over-year (expected 10.1%; last 10.2%). December House Prices +5.3% year-over-year (last 5.1%)
    • Japan's November Industrial Production +0.5% month-over-month (expected 0.6%; last 0.6%)
    • Australia's December Employment Change 34,700 (expected 9,000; last 63,600), December Unemployment Rate 5.5% (expected 5.4%; last 5.4%), and December Participation Rate 65.7% (expected 65.4%; last 65.5%). MI Inflation Expectations remained at 3.7%
    • Hong Kong's Unemployment Rate 2.9% (last 3.0%)

---Equity Markets---

  • Japan's Nikkei lost 0.4%. Ricoh, Tosoh, Mitsubishi, Eisai, Shiseido, Sumitomo Metal Mining, Showa Denko, Isuzu Motors, Hitachi Construction, and Komatsu posted losses between 1.7% and 5.8%. On the upside, Dainippon Screen Manufacturing, Tokyo Electron, Bridgestone, Nikon, TDK, and Kyocera climbed between 1.1% and 4.9%.
  • Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 0.4%. Financials like ICBC, Ping An Insurance, China Construction Bank, Bank of China, Citic Pacific, and HSBC gained between 0.5% and 3.5%. On the downside, Apple supplier AAC Technologies lost 4.1% and Geely Automobile fell 4.3%.
  • China's Shanghai Composite advanced 0.9%. Hengli Petrochemical, BTG Hotels, Shanxi Xinghuacun Fen Wine Factory, and Bright Real Estate Group gained between 5.3% and 6.9%.
  • India's Sensex climbed 0.5% despite losses in more than half of its components. HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank, Tata Consultancy, and Wipro rallied between 0.5% and 2.2% while Adani Ports, Tata Steel, SBI, and Tata Motors lost between 0.9% and 4.3%.


  • USDJPY UNCH at 111.29
  • USDCNY -0.2% to 6.419
  • USDINR UNCH at 63.84
07:02  MS Morgan Stanley beats by $0.06, beats on revs (55.35 )

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $0.84 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.06 better than the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.78; revenues rose 5.3% year/year to $9.5 bln vs the $9.25 bln Capital IQ Consensus.
    • Results for the current quarter excluded a net discrete tax provision of $990 million or a loss of $0.55 per diluted share.
    • The annualized return on average common equity in the current quarter was 2.9 percent, or 8.6 percent excluding the impact of the net discrete tax provision.
  • Investment Banking revenues of $1.4 billion increased from $1.3 billion a year ago:
    • Advisory revenues of $522 million decreased from $628 million a year ago on lower levels of completed M&A activity.
    • Equity underwriting revenues of $416 million increased from $225 million in the prior year quarter driven by higher revenues on IPOs and follow-on offerings.
    • Fixed income underwriting revenues of $499 million increased from $421 million in the prior year quarter reflecting higher non-investment grade loan fees.
    • Sales and Trading net revenues of $2.7 billion decreased from $3.2 billion a year ago:
      • Equity sales and trading net revenues of $1.9 billion decreased from $2.0 billion a year ago reflecting lower revenues in execution services driven by a decline in derivatives, partially offset by increases in the financing business.
      • Fixed Income sales and trading net revenues of $808 million decreased from $1.5 billion a year ago primarily driven by lower results in rates and foreign exchange, partially offset by increases in credit products. Results in the prior year quarter reflected improved market conditions following the U.S. elections.
  • Wealth Management reported pre-tax income from continuing operations of $1.2 billion compared with $891 million in the fourth quarter of last year. The quarter's pre-tax margin was 26%.4 Net revenues for the current quarter were $4.4 billion compared with $4.0 billion a year ago.
07:01  INSE Inspired Entertainment prices 4.5 mln share offering at $7.95/share by selling stockholders (7.95 )

The Company will not issue shares in the offering and will not receive any proceeds from the sale of the shares by the Selling Stockholders in this offering.
07:01  SMTS Sierra Metals reports 4Q17 production results (2.62 )

4Q17 Production Highlights

  • Silver equivalent production of 4.1 million ounces; a 15% increase from Q4 2016
  • Copper equivalent production of 21.9 million pounds; a 12% decrease from Q4 2016
  • Zinc equivalent production of 47.3 million pounds; an 8% decrease from Q4 2016
  • Total of 498,199 tonnes processed; a 4% decrease from Q4 2016
  • Tonnage at Bolivar and Cusi increased during Q4 2017 as key components of the operational improvement and turnaround plan were completed

The capital expenditures included in the technical report has been reduced by $18M, to $52M (capex expected to be spent in 2018 is $28M). This reduction resulted in the elimination of 130 meters of shaft sinking, the elimination of the proposed 1370 level station, and the elimination of the 1400 level loading and spill pocket.

07:01  AES AES confirms that ValueAct Capital Founder and Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey Ubben has been appointed to the Board, effective immediately (10.72 )

This appointment is a continuation of the Company's efforts to create shareholder value.
06:59  ABM ABM Industries provides updated FY18 guidance to account for tax reform (38.73 )

  • Co sees FY18 EPS of $1.98-2.08 (Prior (issued ahead of tax reform) $1.70-1.80) vs $1.84 Capital IQ Consensus Estimate
    • At this time, the Company anticipates the impact on fiscal 2018 GAAP income from continuing operations per diluted share will be approximately $0.40 to $0.50, which includes one-time related items. On an adjusted basis, the impact on fiscal 2018 income from continuing operations per diluted share will be approximately $0.28. The Company expects to provide additional information relating to the impact of the 2017 Tax Reform Act on its fiscal 2018 guidance outlook in conjunction with its first quarter earnings release in March 2018.
  • The live webcast of the Company's Investor Day will begin at 9:45 a.m. ET today
06:54  PPG PPG Industries reports EPS in-line, beats on revs (114.50 )

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $1.19 per share, excluding non-recurring items, in-line with the Capital IQ Consensus of $1.19; revenues rose 7.8% year/year to $3.68 bln vs the $3.61 bln Capital IQ Consensus. 
  • "In the fourth quarter, we delivered solid and balanced sales growth in each major region, and both reporting segments achieved at least 2 percent sales volume growth," said Michael H. McGarry, PPG chairman and chief executive officer. "Additionally, our aggregate selling prices improved for the third consecutive quarter as we made continued progress on our margin recovery efforts, despite higher than anticipated raw material inflation in the quarter driven by ongoing supply-related issues, including production curtailments from additional environmental enforcement in China.
  • "Our Performance Coatings segment delivered its highest sales volume growth of the year, growing more than 2 percent aided by continued above-market performance in automotive refinish coatings, strengthening aerospace growth and solid mid-single-digit percentage volume growth in our U.S. company-owned architectural coatings stores. Industrial Coatings maintained a mid-single-digit percentage sales volume growth rate, once again well outpacing global industrial production, led by our general industrial and packaging coatings businesses."
  • "Looking ahead, we are well positioned to benefit from broadening and more synchronized global economic growth due to our geographic reach, excellent product portfolio, and advanced customer technologies, McGarry said. We expect minimal abatement in the first half of the year to the high level of raw material inflation that the coatings industry is experiencing. We will continue to work with our customers to address the inflationary environment and expect to realize additional selling price increases in 2018. Finally, we continue to have strong financial flexibility and are committed to deploy a minimum of $2.4 billion of cash in 2018 on acquisitions and share repurchases as part of our previously communicated target to deploy $3.5 billion in 2017 and 2018 combined."
06:47  MTG MGIC Investment beats by $0.15, reports revs in-line (15.20 )

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $0.43 per share, excluding $0.36/share tax charge, $0.15 better than the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.28; revenues rose 1.9% year/year to $271.5 mln vs the $273.66 mln Capital IQ Consensus. New Insurance Written of $12.8 billion was unchanged from the fourth quarter of 2016. Insurance in force of $194.9 billion at December 31, 2017 increased by 2.0% during the quarter and 7.1% year-to-date. Primary delinquent inventory of 46,556 at December 31, 2017 increased from 41,235 at September 30, 2017, driven by new notice activity from areas affected by major 2017 hurricanes. Our primary delinquent inventory declined 7.4% year-to-date from 50,282 at Dec 31, 2016.
  • Book value per common share increased by 0.7% during the quarter and 13.8% year-to-date to $8.51
06:46  WIRES On The Wires

  • BioLife Solutions (BLFS) and SAVSU Technologies announce that the USPTO has issued a notice of allowance of a patent application titled 'Biologic Stability, Delivery Logistics and Administration of Time and/or Temperature Sensitive Biologic Based Materials'
  • Sharing Economy International (SEII) announce that its wholly-owned subsidiary, EC Technology & Innovations Ltd. ("EC Technology"), has entered into a non-binding memorandum of understanding with the shareholders of iMusicTech Limited ("iMusicTech"), regarding a potential acquisition by EC Technology of not less than 51% of iMusicTech.
  • Hydrogenics (HYGS) received an order valued at $7.8 million to supply fuel cell power systems for zero-emission vehicles in China. For competitive reasons, the customer has chosen to remain confidential at this time. Shipments are expected to be made over the next twelve months.
06:40  BK BNY Mellon reports EPS in-line, misses on revs (57.89 )

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $0.91 per share, excluding non-recurring items, in-line with the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.91; GAAP revenues fell 1.6% year/year to $3.73 bln vs the $4.01 bln Capital IQ Consensus.
  • EPS excludes the following: U.S. tax legislation estimated net benefit of $427 million, or $0.41 per common share & Severance, litigation and other charges of $246 million, or $0.24 per common share.
  • Asset servicing fees increased 6% year-over-year and 2% sequentially. The year-over-year increase primarily reflects higher equity market values, net new business, including growth in collateral management, and the favorable impact of the weaker U.S. dollar.
  • Net interest revenue increased 2% year-over-year and 1% sequentially. The year-over-year increase primarily reflects higher interest rates, partially offset by lower average deposits and loans as well as the impact of interest rate hedging activities and leasing.
  • Record AUC/A of $33.3 trillion increased 11% reflecting higher market values, the favorable impact of a weaker U.S. dollar and net new business.
06:38  KEY KeyCorp reports EPS in-line; net interest income of $952 mln (+0.4% y/y); announces estimated impact of tax reform (21.26 )

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $0.36 per share, excluding non-recurring items, in-line with the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.36.
  • net interest margin of 3.09% (-0.9% y/y)
  • Tax reform revaluation resulted in an estimated tax expense of $147 million recognized in the fourth quarter of 2017.
    • Noninterest expense increased by $29 million in the quarter related to the impairment of certain tax-advantaged assets and an additional contribution to employee retirement accounts.
    • The total impact of tax reform and related actions was $.16 per common share in the fourth quarter of 2017.
  • Key's provision for credit losses was $49 million for the fourth quarter of 2017, compared to $66 million for the fourth quarter of 2016 and $51 million for the third quarter of 2017.
06:33  IIIN InSteel Industries beats by $0.19, beats on revs (29.83 )

  • Reports Q1 (Dec) earnings of $0.42 per share, $0.19 better than the two analyst estimate of $0.23; revenues rose 4.1% year/year to $97.74 mln vs the $94.9 mln Capital IQ Consensus.
    • Insteel's earnings for the current year quarter benefited from a $3.7 million, or $0.19 per share gain on the remeasurement of deferred tax liabilities and a $0.5 million, or $0.03 per share reduction in income taxes related to the lower corporate tax rate enacted under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act in December 2017.
  • Insteel's first-quarter results were unfavorably impacted by narrower spreads between selling prices and raw material costs, partially offset by higher shipments and lower manufacturing costs on the higher production volume relative to the prior year quarter
  • Outlook
    • "We are encouraged by the improving demand trends during the first quarter following the weakness we experienced over the second half of fiscal 2017," commented H.O. Woltz III, Insteel's president and CEO. "As we move into the second quarter, however, we expect our results will be affected by the usual weather-related slowdown in construction activity.  "Looking ahead to the remainder of fiscal 2018, the leading indicators for the construction sector are signaling continued growth which should drive improvement in our volumes, spreads and costs. We also expect to benefit from our recent acquisition of Ortiz Engineered Products as we intensify our efforts to penetrate the rebar market with the substitution of engineered structural mesh for cast-in-place applications and leverage our newly combined engineering and sales capabilities."
06:32  WYN Wyndham Worldwide to acquire La Quinta's (LQ) hotel franchise and hotel management businesses for $1.95 bln in cash (117.13 )

  • Under the terms of the agreement, stockholders of La Quinta will receive $8.40 per share in cash (approximately $1.0 billion in aggregate), and Wyndham Worldwide will repay approximately $715 million of La Quinta debt net of cash and set aside a reserve of $240 million for estimated taxes expected to be incurred in connection with the taxable spin-off of La Quinta's owned real estate assets into CorePoint Lodging Inc. Immediately prior to the sale of La Quinta to Wyndham Worldwide, La Quinta will spin off its owned real estate assets into a publicly-traded real estate investment trust, CorePoint Lodging.
  • La Quinta also announced today that Keith A. Cline has been appointed President and Chief Executive Officer of CorePoint Lodging effective upon completion of the planned spin-off.
  • Wyndham Worldwide's planned spin-off of Wyndham Hotel Group remains on track for an expected distribution in the second quarter of 2018.
06:31  DPW DPW Holdings more than doubles antminer S9 bitcoin miner installation rate (2.27 )

  • The Company's subsidiary, Super Crypto Mining, has escalated its current deployment in the first quarter of 2018 from 40 to 100 units per week, in an effort to expedite achievement of its mining goals.
  • The Company will provide updates on the other models such as the L3, D3 and GPU miners that mine Ethereum and the other top cryptocurrencies that will be provided to investors during its webinar on January 31, 2018.
06:10  WIRES On The Wires

  • Marks & Spencer (MAKSY) has extended its longstanding digital customer contact partnership with Capita (CTAGY) by a further five years. The contract renewal and expansion commences April 2018 and is worth approximately 70m over the contract term.
  • On January 16, 2018, the Korea Exchange requested that SK Telecom (SKM) respond to reports regarding the potential acquisition of TOPTEC Co., Ltd.. The Company's final response to such request is that as of January 17, 2018, it has decided not to pursue the acquisition of TOPTEC. The Company had previously stated in an earlier response that it was reviewing the potential acquisition of TOPTEC but had not made any decision with regard to such acquisition.
  • Cloud Peak Energy (CLD) announced the departure of its Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Gary Rivenes. Mr. Rivenes' last day as an employee of Cloud Peak Energy will be April 17, 2018. However, effective immediately, Mr. Colin Marshall, Cloud Peak Energy's President and Chief Executive Officer, assumed the responsibilities of Chief Operating Officer, in addition to his current role as President and Chief Executive Officer.
06:06  LIVE Live Ventures reports FY17 results (14.63 )

  • Co reports FY18 EPS of $2.94 versus $0.27 last year; revs +92.6% YoY To $152.0 mln.
  • Gross profit up 213.2 percent to $62.5 million
  • Operating Income up 680.7 percent to $18.1 million
06:01  SPI SPI Energy unit establishes strategic partnership with Hoofoo, a 'hack-proof' cryptocurrency wallet for iOS and android phones (0.87 )

Under the strategic partnership, Hoofoo will authorize SPI Energy to distribute their hackproof cryptocurrency wallet in global presence by leveraging on SPI Energy's existing presence in Australia, Europe, the United States and China. SPI Energy will also work with Hoofoo on advancing the technology front.
06:01  DFFN Diffusion Pharmaceuticals prices 15 mln common shares together w/ warrants at $0.80/share and warrant (1.11 )

05:51  S&P futures vs fair value: -0.30. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: -8.30.

05:51  European Markets

FTSE...7697.01...-28.60...-0.40%.  DAX...13239.21...+55.30...+0.40%.
05:51  Asian Markets

Nikkei...32122...+138.50...+0.40%.  Hang Seng...23763...-105.00...-0.40%.
05:51  BBT BB&T Corp beats by $0.04, reports revs in-line (53.28 )

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $0.84 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.04 better than the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.80; revenues rose 3.6% year/year to $2.87 bln vs the $2.86 bln Capital IQ Consensus.
    • Net interest margin was 3.43%, down five basis points
  • Average loans and leases held for investment were $142.7 billion, flat compared to the third quarter of 2017
    • Average commercial and industrial loans increased $267 million, or 1.8% annualized
    • Average CRE loans increased $222 million, or 4.2% annualized
  • Capital levels remained strong across the board
    • Common equity tier 1 to risk-weighted assets was 10.0%
    • Tier 1 risk-based capital was 11.8%
    • Total capital was 13.8%
    • Leverage capital was 9.7%
05:50  FXI Shanghai...+0.87%

05:48  TOSBF Toshiba announced that it has selected Nucleus Acquisition as the buyer of the Westinghouse-related shares that it holds; Toshiba will sell its rights to assert claims against Westinghouse related to the parent guarantees in the amount of $5.788 bln (2.82 )

  • Co announced that it has selected Nucleus Acquisition, consortium controlled by The Baupost Group, L.L.C., as the buyer of its claims against Westinghouse Electric Companyand Brookfield WEC Holdings LLC as the buyer of the Westinghouse-related shares that it holds, and has accordingly entered into an assignment and purchase agreement with Nucleus and a share purchase agreement (the "SPA") with BWH.
  • Under the terms of the APA, Toshiba will sell its rights to assert claims against Westinghouse related to the parent guarantees in the amount of$5,788 million (approx. 654.0 billion yen), and on account of other claims Toshiba holds against Westinghouse in the amount of US$2,284 million (approx. 258.1 billion yen) to Nucleus, for the sale price of US$2,160 million (approx. 244.1 billion yen). Toshiba anticipates closing of the Claims sale by the end of January. Separately, under the terms of the SPA, Toshiba will sell all shares it holds in Toshiba Nuclear Energy Holdings and Toshiba Nuclear Energy Holdings (UK) Limited to BWH, an affiliate of Brookfield Business Partners LP and its affiliates, Westinghouse's proposed new owner, for the sale price of US$1 (approx. 113 yen). With the goal of completing the sale of the Westinghouse-related Shares by the end of March 2018, the parties, together with the cooperation of Brookfield and Westinghouse, will seek regulatory approvals or determination necessary for the sale to close. Brookfield will not acquire control of Westinghouse through the transactions contemplated by the SPA.
05:34  WIRES On The Wires

  • Samsung Electronics (SSNLF) announced that it has started mass production of the industry's first 16-gigabit Graphics Double Data Rate 6 memory for use in advanced graphics processing for gaming devices and graphics cards as well as automotive, network and artificial intelligence systems
  • Eni (E) has launched its new HPC4 supercomputer, at its Green Data Center in Ferrera Erbognone, 60 km away from Milan. HPC4 quadruples the Company's computing power and makes it the world's most powerful industrial system.
  • Sandoz, a Novartis (NVS) division and the global leader in biosimilars, announced a global partnership with Asia's premier biopharmaceuticals company, Biocon, to develop, manufacture and commercialize multiple biosimilars in immunology and oncology for patients worldwide. Under the terms of the agreement, both companies will share responsibility for end-to-end development, manufacturing and global regulatory approvals for a number of products, and will have a cost and profit share arrangement globally. Worldwide commercialization responsibilities will be divided and each company's strengths will be leveraged within specific geographies.
  • Rolls-Royce (RYCEY) is to supply MTU engines to equipment manufacturer Terex Cranes for two new Demag models. The Demag AC 300-6 will be powered by a Series 6R 1500/OM 473 engine, and the AC 45 City crane by 6R 1000/OM 936 engines.
05:27  EADSY Airbus signs agreement for up to 36 additional A380s with Emirates (27.50 )

  • Emirates Airline has signed a Memorandum of Understanding to acquire up to 36 additional A380 aircraft.
  • The agreement was signed this morning at the airline's headquarters in Dubai by HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Airline and Group, and John Leahy, Chief Operating Officer Customers, Airbus Commercial Aircraft. The commitment is for 20 A380s and an option for 16 more with deliveries to start in 2020, valued at $16 billion at latest list prices.
05:22  NTNX Nutanix prices $500 mln of 0% convertible senior notes due 2023 (36.73 )

05:21  TSM Taiwan Semi beats by NT$0.08, reports revs in-line; guides Q1 revs below consensus (43.13 )

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of NT$3.83 per share, $0.08 better than the Capital IQ Consensus of $3.75; revenues rose 5.8% year/year to NT$277.57 bln vs the NT$277.72 bln Capital IQ Consensus.
    • Gross margin for the quarter was 50.0%, operating margin was 39.2%, and net profit margin was 35.8%.
    • In the fourth quarter, shipments of 10-nanometer accounted for 25% of total wafer revenue; 16/20-nanometer process technology accounted for 20% of total wafer revenue; and advanced technologies, defined as 28-nanometer and more advanced technologies, accounted for 63% of total wafer revenue.
  • Co issues downside guidance for Q1, sees Q1 revs of $8.4-8.5 bln vs. $8.83 bln Capital IQ Consensus Estimate.
05:06  WIRES On The Wires

  • Global supercomputer leader Cray (CRAY) announced that as part of a $67 million contract with Cray to update its supercomputing facilities and systems, the Ministry of Earth Sciences in India has deployed two Cray XC40 supercomputers and two Cray ClusterStor storage systems. The combined systems are the largest supercomputing resource in India, and extend Cray's leadership position in the weather forecasting and climate research communities.
  • Clavister (CLAV) created an innovative solution against Slow DDoS attacks on the network of NTT Broadband Platform (NTTBP), one of the largest Wi-Fi providers in Japan, to be deployed early 2018.
  • Accenture (ACN) and Oracle (ORCL) announced that they have teamed with West Midlands Police to successfully deploy a suite of Oracle Cloud applications designed to increase efficiencies and processes across the force. The project is one of the first implementations of cloud technology by a public safety agency in the U.K.
  • Elbit Systems (ESLT) announced that it was awarded an approximately $85 million contract from a European country to supply a range of advanced ground-based Electronic Warfare and Signal Intelligence systems. The contract will be performed over a four-year period.
  • New Age Beverages (NBEV) announced that it is expanding distribution of its portfolio of healthy beverages into all of the Military Commissaries worldwide.
  • Cobalt Air, has successfully completed a major I.T. implementation to Sabre's passenger reservations system. The technology is set to help generate a substantial increase in additional revenues for the airline and offer new experiences to travelers. The introduction of the new system is part of the airline's overarching vision to achieve solid long-term growth, profitability and a top-quality service for its passengers. The airline intends to achieve these goals through applying innovative and performance-enhancing technology -- and now all of Cobalt's reservations, and critical airline operations have been transitioned to Sabre (SABR).
05:05  SBNY Signature Bank beats by $0.20 (148.05 )

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $2.43 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.20 better than the Capital IQ Consensus of $2.23.
  • Net Interest Margin on a Tax-Equivalent Basis Was 3.07% for the 2017 Fourth Quarter, Compared with 3.05% for the 2017 Third Quarter and 3.14% for the 2016 Fourth Quarter
  • Core Net Interest Margin on a Tax-Equivalent Basis, Which Excludes Loan Prepayment Penalty Income, Decreased One Basis Point to 2.98% for the 2017 Fourth Quarter, Compared with 2.99% for the 2017 Third Quarter
  • Tier 1 Leverage, Common Equity Tier 1 Risk-Based, Tier 1 Risk-Based and Total Risk-Based Capital Ratios were 9.72%, 11.97%, 11.97% and 13.30%, Respectively, at December 31, 2017. Signature Bank Remains Significantly Above FDIC "Well-Capitalized" Standards. Tangible Common Equity Ratio was 9.29%
  • Total Deposits Declined $238.0 Million to $33.44 Billion, While Non-Interest Bearing Deposits Increased $688.5 Million in the 2017 Fourth Quarter. Average Deposits Increased $646.7 Million, or 1.9%, in the 2017 Fourth Quarter 
  • Total Deposits Grew $1.58 Billion, or 5.0%, in 2017. Average Deposits for 2017 at $33.16 Billion, Representing an Increase of $3.41 Billion, or 11.5%, Versus $29.75 Billion in 2016
  • Loans Increased $1.43 Billion, or 4.6%, to $32.61 Billion in the 2017 Fourth Quarter. Since Year-end 2016, Loans Increased $3.57 Billion, or 12.3%
04:49  WIRES On The Wires

  • Turquoise Hill Resources (TRQ) announced that Oyu Tolgoi has declared force majeure in connection to customer contracts for concentrate due to a protest by Chinese coal transporters recently commenced in the area of the Ganqimaodu Border Zone. On January 8, the protestors used a large number of vehicles to obstruct the main access road within China to the Chinese-Mongolian border. The main border crossing for goods and supplies is open. As a result, while the obstruction remains in place, Oyu Tolgoi convoys are unable to cross through the Chinese-Mongolian border to deliver concentrates to customers.
  • Accenture (ACN) opened its Innovation Hub in Tokyo, a state-of-the-art facility that will become a destination for Accenture people and clients to ideate, rapidly prototype and launch digital solutions. The unveiling of the Innovation Hub in Tokyo's Minato Ward is part of broader plans to open new facilities across Japan offering clients access to Accenture's deep industry knowledge, leading technology capabilities and business acumen.
  • Biohaven Pharmaceutical Holding Company (BHVN) and its wholly owned subsidiary, Biohaven Pharmaceuticals announced that the FDA has notified the Company that it may proceed with its clinical investigation of BHV-5000. Enrollment of subjects has started for the IND opening study, which will test single and multiple doses of a solid-dose formulation of BHV-5000 in healthy volunteers.
04:47  CTIC CTI BioPharma receives $10 mln milestone payment for TRISENOX (3.41 )

  • Co announced that it expects to receive a $10 million milestone payment in February, 2018 from Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. related to the achievement of a milestone for U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval of TRISENOX (arsenic trioxide) for first line treatment of acute promyelocytic leukemia.
  • The milestone will be paid pursuant to an acquisition agreement for TRISENOX previously entered into with Teva under which CTI BioPharma is eligible to receive up to an additional $50 million in payments upon achievement by Teva of specified sales and development milestones related to TRISENOX.
04:36  MLNX Mellanox Tech confirms Starboard Value has nominated nine director candidates to stand for election to the BOD (64.03 )

04:35  BGNE BeiGene prices 7,425,750 ADSs at $101.00 per ADS (102.63 )

04:34  TOL Toll Brothers prices $400 mln of 4.350% Senior Notes due 2028 (52.07 )

04:33  PATK Patrick Industries upsizes offering by $25 mln and prices $150 mln of its convertible senior notes due 2023 (65.10 )

04:32  EGBN Eagle Bancorp reports EPS in-line (61.85 )

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $0.88 per share, in-line with the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.88.
  • Total deposits at December 31, 2017 were $5.85 billion, compared to deposits of $5.91 billion at September 30, 2017, a 1% decrease, and deposits of $5.72 billion at December 31, 2016, a 2% increase. Total borrowed funds (excluding customer repurchase agreements) were $541.9 million at December 31, 2017, $416.8 million at September 30, 2017 and $216.5 million at December 31, 2016.
04:28  SSW Seaspan enters definitive agreements for the previously announced $250 mln investment in Seaspan 5.5% interest bearing unsecured debentures and Class A Common Share purchase warrants (6.99 )

04:26  FRAC Keane Group upsizes secondary offering by selling stockholders and prices 13,321,753 shares of common stock at $18.25 per share (18.51 )

04:25  BOOT Boot Barn Holdings upsizes offering and prices 6 mln shares of common stock by selling shareholders at $17.25 per share (18.00 )

04:23  PGH Pengrowth Energy approves 2018 capital expenditure budget of $65 million (0.82 )

  • Co announced that the Company's Board of Directors has approved a 2018 capital expenditure budget of $65 million. 2018 capital spending will be focused on adding production volumes at the Company's two 100 percent owned and operated assets at Lindbergh and Groundbirch.
  • The 2018 capital budget is expected to grow production volumes through the course of the year from a December 2017 exit production rate of approximately 19,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boe/d), excluding the Quirk Creek production volumes, to an estimated 2018 exit rate of approximately 24,000 boe/d, representing approximately 25 percent production growth in 2018. On an annual basis, the 2018 budget is expected to deliver average daily production of between 22,500 and 23,500 boe/d.
04:20  OBE Obsidian Energy comments on statement by FrontFour Capital Group (1.21 )

  • Co confirms it is aware of a statement by FrontFour Capital Group regarding their views on the direction of the Company.
  • "Obsidian Energy's corporate strategy is well defined and has the unanimous support of the Board of Directors. We have been organically growing the Company through the combination of sustaining a low decline production base and leveraging significant development optionality. The Company delivered strong results throughout the past year, and provided an operational update earlier this week that confirms the business plan is working. Those operational successes, along with our highly capital efficient 2018 plans, are a product of robust capital planning and a project review process with both Management and the Board. A change of course would hinder Obsidian Energy's progress and ability to deliver on the value maximizing efforts already underway..."
04:19  NE Noble Corp PLC upsizes offering by $250 mln and prices $750 mln of 7.875% senior unsecured guaranteed notes due 2026 (5.43 )

 Wednesday After the Close   
18:23  MPVD Mountain Province Diamonds provides exploration update - intercepted kimberlite in six exploration holes drilled to date (2.82 +0.08)

The ground gravity survey and the exploration drilling are expected to be completed in mid-March. A subsequent drill program is anticipated to drill test the ground gravity target in the corridor between Tesla and Tuzo, and also to drill test the corridor between 5034 and Tuzo. The North Pipe kimberlite, which lies within that corridor and comprises part of the 5034 inferred resources, is open in all directions for expansion. Additionally, analysis of the results of the current drill program is expected to be completed in mid 2018, with the goal of estimating a resource for the Southwest Corridor area for eventual incorporation into the Gahcho Ku mine plan.
18:21  WAC Walter Investment Mgmt prepackaged Chapter 11 plan approved by court - expects to emerge by January 31, 2018 (0.76 +0.03)

  • Co announced that the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York has approved the prepackaged financial restructuring plan. The Company expects to emerge from Chapter 11 by no later than January 31, 2018, after the conditions to the Prepackaged Plan are satisfied, and the Company is on track to complete its financial restructuring in the first quarter of 2018.
  • As previously announced, the comprehensive financial restructuring plan is expected to reduce the outstanding corporate debt by ~$800 million and create enhanced financial flexibility.
  • Walter's operating entities, including Ditech Financial and Reverse Mortgage Solutions are continuing to operate in the ordinary course.
  • Restructuring details.
17:49  CBOE Cboe Global Markets announced the settlement of January expiry Cboe bitcoin future (131.52 +0.73)

The settlement price was $10,900.00, as determined by the 4:00 p.m. ET Gemini Exchange bitcoin auction. Cboe XBT futures, the first regulated futures of their kind, launched on December 10, 2017, and a total of over 124,000 contracts have traded across expiries since, representing a notional value of over $1.5 billion.
17:34  NTDOY Nintendo confirms the launch of Nintendo Labo (interactive kits for Nintendo Switch) (51.53 +1.55)

Together with the Nintendo Switch system (sold separately), the Nintendo Labo kits provide the tools and technology to make DIY creations and play games with your creations. Nintendo Labo launches on April 20 with two kits: the Variety Kit and the Robot Kit.
17:32  SN Sanchez Energy releases 2018 capital budget with total spending of $420-470 million (reduction of approximately $100 million vs 2017) (5.81 +0.16)

  • Other highlights: Based on its capital budget, Sanchez Energy expects full year 2018 production to average between 88,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day ("Boe/d") and 92,000 Boe/d; Sanchez Energy's three-year plan is aimed at achieving a sustainable business model, delivering organic production growth while spending within cash flow; Based on its three-year plan, Sanchez Energy projects full year 2019 production between 92,000 Boe/d and 96,000 Boe/d, and 2020 production between 102,000 Boe/d and 108,000 Boe/d, assuming similar levels of capital spending as planned for 2018
  • Average horizontal well lateral length is anticipated to be roughly 8,000 feet in 2018, reflecting a year-over-year increase of approximately 1,500 feet; Drilling and completion activity is expected to average 6 rigs and 3.5 completions crews in 2018, resulting in approximately 180 gross drilled wells and 210 gross wells turned to production.
  • The production for the first quarter is projected to average between 82,000 Boe/d and 84,000 Boe/d. Recent completions and drilling activity currently have the Company on-pace to reach production of approximately 90,000 Boe/d within the first half of 2018. In the second half of 2018, the Company anticipates additional growth in its daily production rate, with an average production rate of between 88,000 Boe/d and 92,000 Boe/d projected for the full year.
17:08  EVEP EV Energy granted additional 180-day grace period to regain compliance with NASDAQ's minimum bid price requirement (ends July 16, 2018) (0.89 +0.01)

17:06  SFE Safeguard Sci to implement change in business strategy/operations (10.85 -0.15)

  • Under the new strategy, Safeguard will not deploy any capital into new Partner Company opportunities and will focus on supporting its existing Partner Companies and maximizing monetization opportunities for Partner Company interests to enable distributions of net proceeds to shareholders.
  • The Company will consider initiatives including: the sale of individual Partner Companies, the sale of certain Partner Company interests in secondary market transactions, or a combination thereof, as well as other opportunities to maximize shareholder value. Safeguard anticipates distributing to shareholders net proceeds from the sale of Partner Companies or Partner Company interests, as applicable, after satisfying the Company's debt obligations and working capital needs.
  • Also announced it is implementing an immediate initiative to generate annual cost savings of between $5-6 million, which reflect changes in the personnel and operating cost requirements under the new strategy. Corporate expenses, excluding interest, depreciation and stock-based compensation were ~$16 million in 2017.
  • The Company has not set a timetable for completion of the monetization and distribution process.
17:05  HBM Hudbay Minerals issues 2018 production/cost guidance and enters new collective bargaining agreements in Peru and Manitoba (10.05 +0.10)

  • Hudbay's copper production exceeded 2017 guidance and production of zinc and precious metals were within 2017 guidance ranges. Production results were achieved with strong safety performance, including zero lost time accidents at the Constancia mine in 2017. 
  • Production of copper contained in concentrate in 2018 is forecast to decrease by approximately 15% compared to 2017 production, as the Constancia mine shifts to the lower-grade hypogene ore in the main pit, in line with the mine plan, and the Reed mine closes. Production of zinc contained in concentrate in 2018 is forecast to decrease by approximately 13% compared to 2017 production, as zinc grades at Lalor and 777 are lower, in line with the respective mine plans. Production of precious metals contained in concentrate in 2018 is forecast to increase by approximately 31% compared to 2017 production, primarily due to a planned increase in precious metals production from the Lalor mine in Manitoba and the expected start of mining at the Pampacancha deposit in Peru.
  • Three-year collective bargaining agreements have been entered into with Hudbay's unionized workforces at each of its Manitoba and Peru operations, providing labour stability. 
17:04  JNJ Johnson & Johnson confirms USPTO ZYTIGA decision as part of the Inter Partes Reviews (146.98 +0.12)

  • "We are disappointed in and strongly disagree with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's decisions relating to ZYTIGA as part of the Inter Partes Reviews. We are evaluating our options with respect to a request for rehearing and/or appeal to the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. We believe the '438 patent is valid and will continue to vigorously defend it."
  • Inter Partes Review decisions by the USPTO do not result in termination of a 30-month stay triggered under the Hatch-Waxman Act by the timely filing of a patent infringement lawsuit against a generic ANDA applicant.
17:01  MLNX Mellanox Tech: 10.7% shareholder Starboard to nominate nine director candidates for election at Mellanox's 2018 Annual Meeting (MLNX reports earnings tomorrow after the close) (64.30 -0.45)

  • Starboard says "we believe that substantial change is required and warranted on the Board in order to provide a new plan for the future, a fresh perspective, renewed accountability to shareholders, and importantly, the objectivity and perspective to make difficult decisions without the burden of attachment to past practices. Only with these changes do we believe Mellanox can get back on track and become a leader in the industry across technology innovation, operating performance, and financial performance. This will be crucial to driving long-term shareholder value."
  • "While we are still in the process of evaluating the degree of change that we believe is necessary on the Board, to the extent that we seek the election of all nine new directors, our present intention would be to expand the size of the Board and add back up to two incumbent directors, should they be willing to serve, in order to ensure a degree of continuity, as well as to provide additional local market presence and expertise. We look forward to the Company's conference call tomorrow announcing fourth quarter 2017 results and first quarter 2018 guidance."
16:49  HUSKF Husky Energy to suspend SeaRose operations (15.27 +0.01)

This is being undertaken to comply with an order received today from the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board related to an iceberg management incident that occurred in March 2017. A number of measures have already been put in place to further improve ice management operations. Current production from the SeaRose FPSO is approximately 27,000 barrels of oil per day (Husky working interest, before royalties).
16:45  BHP BHP Billiton provides operation update; Full year production/unit cost guidance maintained for petroleum, copper, iron ore and energy coal (44.42 +0.51)

  • Production guidance for Metallurgical Coal reduced to between 41 and 43 Mt as a result of challenging roof conditions at Broadmeadow, which are expected to continue through the March 2018 quarter, and geotechnical issues triggered by wet weather impacts at Blackwater. Unit cost guidance is also expected to be negatively impacted and is currently under review.
  • Underlying EBIT in the December 2017 half year is expected to include impairment charges, predominately related to conveyors at Escondida, in a range of US$250 million to US$350 million
  • Total petroleum production for the December 2017 half year decreased by seven per cent to 99 MMboe. Guidance for the 2018 financial year remains unchanged at between 180 and 190 MMboe, comprising Conventional volumes between 119 and 123 MMboe and Onshore US volumes between 61 and 67 MMboe. Total copper production for the December 2017 half year increased by 17 per cent to 833 kt. Guidance for the 2018 financial year remains unchanged at between 1,655 and 1,790 kt. Total iron ore production for the December 2017 half year was in line with the same period last year at 117 Mt, or 136 Mt on a 100 per cent basis. Guidance for the 2018 financial year remains unchanged at between 239 and 243 Mt, or between 275 and 280 Mt on a 100 per cent basis, with volumes weighted to the second half of the financial year as expected.
16:43  POL PolyOne to discuss expectation of delivering double digit EPS growth in 2018 and beyond at upcoming Investor Day on May 1, 2018 (44.42 +0.51)

PolyOne plans to present additional details about design and materials innovation in the outdoor high-performance market as one of several high-growth focus areas that underpin the company's expectations.
16:40  SLM Sallie Mae reports EPS in-line; guides FY18 core EPS below consensus (11.49 +0.02)

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) core earnings of $0.19 per share, excluding impact of the Tax Act, in-line with the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.19.
  • Co sees FY18 core EPS of $0.97-1.01 vs. $1.04 Capital IQ Consensus Estimate. Full-year private education loan originations of $5.0 billion. Full-year non-GAAP operating efficiency ratio: 37 percent - 38 percent.
  • The company plans to make investments in 2018 that will accelerate the diversification of its consumer lending platform into the personal loan and credit card businesses. In addition, the company will invest in several technology infrastructure projects, including migrating infrastructure to the cloud. These investments will total up to $30 million and are expected to add revenue and improve efficiency in future years. 
16:35  HBHC Hancock Holding beats by $0.03 (54.45 +0.90)

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $0.86 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.03 better than the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.83.
    • excludes an estimated $19.5 million ($.22 per share impact) tax reform related re-measurement charge of the net deferred tax asset (DTA).
  • Loans increased $218 million, or 5% linked-quarter annualized; net increase includes a decline in energy loans of $78 million linked-quarter.
  • Energy loans totaled $1.1 billion at year-end and comprised 5.6% of total loans, down from 6.0%; allowance for the energy portfolio totaled $70.2 million, or 6.7% of energy loans.
  • Core pre-provision net revenue (PPNR) of $116.5 million, up $5.4 million, or 5%; up 34% from the same quarter a year ago.
  • Net interest margin (NIM) of 3.48%, up 4 bps; core NIM up 3 bps to 3.35%.
  • Return on average assets (ROA) declined 6 bps to 0.82%; excluding nonoperating items and the DTA charge, ROA increased 11 bps to 1.10% Tangible common equity (TCE) ratio decreased 7 bps to 7.73% mainly related to the DTA re-measurement charge
16:33  HTZ Hertz Global prices private offering of $1.0 billion medium term Rental Car Asset Backed Notes (21.06 +0.13)

The Company utilizes the HVF II securitization platform to finance its U.S. rental car fleet. The expected maturities of the Series 2018-1 Notes are February 2023. The weighted average interest rate of the Series 2018-1 Notes is 3.41%.
16:32  WRAPX Closing Market Summary: Tech Shares Pace Rebound Rally; Market Closes at New Records

Stocks rallied to new records on Wednesday with technology shares leading the charge.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 1.3% to 26115.65, the Nasdaq Composite rose 1.0% to 7298.28, the S&P 500 climbed 0.9% to 2802.56, and the Russell 2000 advanced 0.9% to 1586.66. The Dow, the Nasdaq, and the S&P 500 finished at new record highs, but the Russell 2000 failed to recoup all of its Tuesday decline.

Wednesday's rally was a powerful statement from the bulls, who appeared to be out of gas on Tuesday following a resilient start to the year. Clearly, that wasn't the case. The S&P 500 has advanced in 9 of 11 sessions in 2018, adding 4.8%. The Nasdaq and the Dow have done even better, climbing 5.7% apiece.

Each of the S&P 500's 11 sectors advanced on Wednesday with gains ranging from 0.3% to 1.6%. The technology sector, which is the heaviest group, was the top performer, finishing with a gain of 1.6%. Within the tech group, IBM (IBM 168.65, +4.80) jumped 2.9% after Barclays upgraded IBM shares to 'Overweight,' and Apple (AAPL 179.10, +2.91) climbed 1.7% after announcing that it will make a one-time tax payment of $38 billion to repatriate cash holdings overseas and will invest over $30 billion in the U.S. over the next five years, creating 20,000 new jobs. Apple said its decision was the result of recent changes to the U.S. tax law.

The tech group was also underpinned by chipmakers, which sent the PHLX Semiconductor Index higher by 2.9%. Dow component Intel (INTC 44.39, +1.25) climbed 2.9%.

Right behind technology in the sector standings were the consumer staples and health care groups, which advanced 1.2% and 1.0%, respectively. Meanwhile, the telecom services (+0.3%), consumer discretionary (+0.4%), and industrials (+0.5%) sectors finished at the back of the pack. General Electric (GE 17.35, -0.86) weighed heavily on the industrial group, dropping 4.7%, as investors continued selling in reaction to Tuesday's announcement that GE's reinsurance business will incur a larger-than-expected charge of $6.2 billion.

Meanwhile, the financial sector (+0.8%) finished roughly in line with the broader market following fourth quarter earnings from Bank of America (BAC 31.18, -0.06), Goldman Sachs (GS 253.65,, 4.81), U.S. Bancorp (USB 56.34, -0.83), and Charles Schwab (SCHW 56.09, +0.56). All four companies beat earnings estimates, but Charles Schwab was the only one to advance, adding 1.0%. The three other financial heavyweights lost between 0.2% and 1.9%.

In other corporate news, Ford (F 12.18, -0.92) tumbled 7.0% after announcing that it expects lower operating profits in 2018, and Boeing (BA 351.01, +15.85) jumped 4.7% to a new all-time high after announcing a joint venture with Adient (ADNT 77.08, -4.83) to develop, manufacture, and sell a portfolio of seating products to airlines and aircraft leasing companies. Adient shares finished lower by 5.9%.

In the bond market, U.S. Treasuries sold off in the midweek session, sending yields higher across the curve. The yield on the benchmark 10-yr Treasury note finished at 2.57% after closing Tuesday at 2.54% while the 2-yr yield jumped four basis points to 2.05%.

Elsewhere, the major European bourses finished Wednesday on a lower note, with Germany's DAX (-0.5%) leading the retreat, while equity indices in Asia finished mixed. Japan's Nikkei lost 0.4% while Hong Kong's Hang Seng and China's Shanghai Composite added 0.3% and 0.2%, respectively.

Reviewing Wednesday's economic data, which included Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization for December, the NAHB Housing Market Index for January, the Fed's Beige Book, and the weekly MBA Mortgage Applications Index:

  • Industrial Production increased 0.9% in December ( consensus +0.4%), while the November reading was revised to -0.1% (from +0.2%). Capacity Utilization ticked up to 77.9% ( consensus 77.3%) from a revised reading of 77.2% in November (from 77.1%).
    • The key takeaway from this report is that Industrial Production in 2017 increased at its fastest annual pace since 2010.
  • The NAHB Housing Market Index for January declined to 72 ( consensus 73) from an unrevised reading of 74 in December.
  • The Fed's Beige Book showed that the economy continued to expand in all 12 Federal Reserve Districts from late November through the end of 2017. Most Districts said that wages increased at a modest pace, and a few Districts observed that firms were raising wages in a broader range of industries and positions since the previous report.
  • The weekly MBA Mortgage Applications Index increased 4.1% to follow last week's 8.3% rise.

On Thursday, investors will receive several economic reports, including Housing Starts for December ( consensus 1280K), Building Permits for December ( consensus 1290K), weekly Initial Claims ( consensus 251K), and the Philadelphia Fed Index for January ( consensus 24.5). All data will be released at 8:30 AM ET.

  • Nasdaq Composite: +5.7% YTD
  • Dow Jones Industrial Average: +5.7% YTD
  • S&P 500: +4.8% YTD
  • Russell 2000: +3.3% YTD
16:31  SBOW SilverBow Resources provides 2018 capital program of $245-$265 million with average net production of approximately 175-195 Mmcfe/d (31.48 +0.52)

The Company plans on providing detailed first quarter and full-year 2018 guidance on the fourth quarter 2017 earnings conference call.
16:31  RDN Radian Group strengthens PMIERs financial position at low cost by expanding existing reinsurance program and issuing intercompany surplus note; expects to comply with the proposed PMIERs by the effective date without a need to take further actions (22.26 +0.13)

Co has taken the following actions in order to leverage its financial flexibility and cost-effectively strengthen the financial position of Radian Guaranty Inc., its principal mortgage insurance (MI) subsidiary, under the Private Mortgage Insurer Eligibility Requirements (PMIERs):

  • Radian Guaranty has agreed with its reinsurance providers to increase the cession of business for its first single-premium MI quota share reinsurance arrangement, which was entered into in 2016. The cession of business increased from 35 to 65 percent for single-premium policies with effective dates in 2015 through 2017. This increased cession, which is effective December 31, 2017, has been approved by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the GSEs).
  • On Dec 28, 2017, Radian Group transferred $100 million of cash and marketable securities to Radian Guaranty in exchange for a surplus note.

At December 31, 2017, Radian Guaranty's "Available Assets" under the PMIERs were ~$3.7 billion and its "Minimum Required Assets" under the PMIERs were ~$3.2 billion, resulting in an excess of ~$450 million, or 14%.

On December 18, 2017, Radian Guaranty received a summary of proposed changes to the PMIERs that are being recommended to the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) by the GSEs. Based on this initial summary, which remains subject to comment by the private mortgage insurance industry, Radian expects to be able to fully comply with the proposed PMIERs and to maintain an excess of Available Assets over Minimum Required Assets under the PMIERs as of the expected effective date in late 2018, without a need to take further actions to do so. The company's expectation is not dependent upon the existing surplus note and is based on its projections for positive operating results in 2018, its strong capital position, and the benefits of its reinsurance programs.

Co will report on Feb 1.

16:22  AM Antero Midstream Partners (AM) and Antero Midstream GP (AMGP) give FY18 and long-term guidance at Analyst Day; AM sees FY18 EBITDA +35%, distribution +29% (30.95 -0.80)

Antero Midstream (AM) and Antero Midstream GP LP (AMGP) announced their 2018 guidance and extended their long-term targets through 2022. In addition, Antero Midstream provided a fourth quarter 2017 update and its 2018 capital budget. Antero Midstream and AGMP will also host an analyst day tomorrow, Jan 18, 2018 in New York City.

AM highlights:

  • Announced a fourth quarter 2017 distribution of $0.365/unit, a 30% increase as compared to the prior year quarter
  • Distribution growth guidance of 28% to 30% in 2018 as compared to 2017 distributions of $1.325/unit
  • Reaffirmed 28% to 30% annual distribution growth from 2018 to 2020 and initiated distribution growth targets of 20% in each of 2021 and 2022
  • Capital budget for 2018 is $650 mln, a decrease of 19% from 2017, including $585 mln in expansion capital and $65 mln in maintenance capital funded through cash flow from operations and credit facility borrowings
  • Net income for 2018 is forecast to be $435 mln to $480 mln
  • Adjusted EBITDA for 2018 is forecast to be $705 mln to $755 mln
  • Distributable Cash Flow for 2018 is forecast to be $575 mln to $625 mln with DCF coverage of 1.25x to 1.35x
  • Expect to generate Free Cash Flow before distributions in 2018 for the first time since the partnership's inception
  • High-graded 5-year organic project inventory of $2.7 bln, a $500 mln reduction from the prior year's plan due to expected capital efficiencies from sponsor's new 5-year plan including longer laterals and increased well recoveries, resulting in fewer pads spread farther apart

AMGP Highlights:

  • Announced a fourth quarter 2017 distribution of $0.075/share, a 27% increase sequentially
  • Distribution guidance of $0.52 to $0.55 per share in 2018, representing 154% to 172% year over year growth as compared to full year 2017 distributions, respectively, including a 20% increase in 2018 guidance as a result of the reduction in federal corporate tax rates to 21%
  • Reaffirmed distribution growth targets of 63% to 65% in 2019 and 51% to 53% in 2020
  • Initiated distribution growth targets of 29% to 31% in 2021 and 27% to 29% in 2022
16:21  AA Alcoa misses by $0.19, misses on revs (56.99 +0.75)

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $1.04 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.19 worse than the Capital IQ Consensus of $1.23; revenues rose 25.1% year/year to $3.17 bln vs the $3.29 bln Capital IQ Consensus.
    • $775 million of adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) excluding special items, up 38% q/q, on higher alumina pricing, Guidance was for greater than $800 mln).

FY18 Outlook

  • Based on January 2018 market assumptions, Alcoa is projecting full-year 2018 adjusted EBITDA, excluding special items, to range between $2.6 billion and $2.8 billion.
  • For 2018, the Company projects balanced global bauxite and alumina markets and a global aluminum deficit of 300 thousand to 700 thousand metric tons. Alcoa is projecting 2018 global aluminum demand growth of 4.25 to 5.25 percent, following the Company's final 2017 global demand growth rate of 5.25 percent.

Pension and OPEB

  • Alcoa today announces changes to its U.S. and Canada defined benefit pension plans, and to certain U.S. other post-employment benefits (OPEB), to support the Company's strategic priority to strengthen the balance sheet by reducing its liabilities. As a result of the above actions, Alcoa expects to both reduce its net pension and OPEB liability by $35 million and record non-cash nonoperating income of approximately $20 million in the first quarter of 2018.
16:19  PLXS Plexus misses by $0.05, misses on revs; guides Q2 EPS below consensus, revs in-line (64.36 +0.59)

  • Reports Q1 (Dec) earnings of $0.75 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.05 worse than the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.80; revenues rose 6.6% year/year to $677 mln vs the $685.07 mln Capital IQ Consensus.
  • Co issues guidance for Q2, sees EPS of $0.68-0.78 vs. $0.82 Capital IQ Consensus Estimate; sees Q2 revs of $670-$710 mln vs. $693.60 mln Capital IQ Consensus Estimate.
  • Todd Kelsey, President and CEO, commented, "We achieved record revenue of $677 million in our fiscal first quarter of 2018. We again delivered operating margin within our target range of 4.7% to 5.0%, resulting in fiscal first quarter 2018 non-GAAP EPS of $0.75. We incurred $125 million of tax expense as a consequence of U.S. Tax Reform, negatively impacting our GAAP diluted EPS. Despite the large tax charge, we view the reform as immensely beneficial for Plexus as it provides us the opportunity to efficiently access our global cash. Therefore, we are refining our capital allocation philosophy and plan, which we will share within the coming months."
16:19  AMGN Amgen receives FDA approval for the supplemental New Drug Application to add overall survival data from the Phase 3 head-to-head ENDEAVOR trial to the Prescribing Information for KYPROLIS (188.01 +2.47)

16:18  ECC Eagle Point Credit commences underwritten public offering of 1.75 mln shares of common stock (19.13 -09)

The Company plans to use the net proceeds from the offering of its common stock to acquire investments in accordance with its investment objectives and strategies, to make distributions to the Company's stockholders and for general working capital purposes.
16:18  AR Antero Resources discloses preliminary Q4 highlights, 2018 guidance and long-term targets (19.78 0.00)

  • Q4:
    • Average net daily gas equivalent production was 2,347 MMcfe/d, an 18% increase over the prior year quarter
    • Fourth quarter Stand-alone E&P Adjusted EBITDAX expected to be in the range of $370-$385 million with consolidated Adjusted EBITDAX of $430-$445 million, above the midpoint of previous fourth quarter guidance
  • FY18: 
    • Antero's 2018 net daily production, including liquids, is forecast to grow 20% as compared to 2017 volumes to approximately 2.7 Bcfe/d. Net liquids production is forecast to increase approximately 23% to an average of 130,000 Bbl/d in 2018, including 77,500 Bbl/d of C3+ NGLs, 43,000 Bbl/d of ethane and 9,500 Bbl/d of condensate.
    • Stand-alone E&P Adjusted EBITDAX is expected to be $1,700-$1,800 million with consolidated Adjusted EBITDAX of $2,050-$2,150 million in 2018
    • Antero's consolidated capital budget for 2018 is $1.45 billion, including $1.3 billion for drilling and completion, $25 million for leasehold maintenance and $125 million for discretionary leasehold expenditures.
  • LT Targets
    • Increasing 5-year planned average lateral lengths by 2,500 feet, or 28%, to 11,400 feet per well
    • Maintaining a compound annual growth rate target in net production of 20% from 2017 through 2020 and introducing a 15% target in each of 2021 and 2022
    • Targeting a debt-adjusted compound annual growth rate in net production of 24% through 2020 and 20% to 24% in each of 2021 and 2022
    • Targeting flat consolidated drilling and completion capital budget of $1.3 billion annually through 2020
    • Targeting reduced 5-year drilling and completion capital by a cumulative $2.9 billion compared to prior year targets, driven by a combination of longer laterals, improved cycle times, capital re-allocation and enhanced recoveries
    • Targeting stand-alone net debt to Adjusted EBITDAX of low 2x in 2018 and under 2x leverage in 2019 and beyond
16:17  PRA ProAssurance appoints CFO Ned Rand, Jr. as COO (55.15 +0.20)

CEO Starnes was frank in addressing any concerns about his future at ProAssurance. "As ProAssurance continues to evolve as a healthcare-centric specialty insurer, our management structure must also evolve. I am committed to maintaining my current position for the foreseeable future, which is why I signed an extension of my five-year employment contract in June 2017. In my discussions with the Board on this matter, we agreed this was a means of extending, not limiting, my career at ProAssurance." ProAssurance's line of business leaders will report directly to Mr. Rand.
16:16  MRC MRC Global renews five year contract to supply pipe, valve and fitting products/services to DCP Midstream (DCP) (18.66 0.00)

16:16  OKE ONEOK increases quarterly common stock dividend to $0.77/share from $0.75/share (59.41 +0.61)

16:16  ABIL Ability Inc receives notification from the Listing Qualifications Department of The Nasdaq that it is not in compliance due to minimum shareholders equity requirement (0.51 -0.015)

16:11  NEOT NeoThetics completes merger with Evofem Biosciences (1.92 +0.08)

The merged company will operate as Evofem Biosciences, Inc. and will focus on the continued development and commercialization of women's healthcare products. The stock will trade on the Nasdaq Capital Market beginning on Thursday, January 18, 2018 under the ticker symbol "EVFM" and was assigned a new CUSIP number 30048L 104.
16:10  AMGN Amgen announces publication of the final analysis of the Phase 3 ASPIRE trail in the Journal of Clinical Oncology (188.01 +2.47)

The final analysis of ASPIRE included subgroup analyses by prior lines of therapy, prior Velcade (bortezomib) exposure at first relapse, and prior transplant at first relapse.

  • Among these three groups, there was an 18 to 29 percent reduction in the risk of death for KRd versus Rd, consistent with findings in the overall population.
  • Median OS was 11.4 months longer for KRd versus Rd in patients who had received one prior line of therapy and 6.5 months longer for patients with two or more prior lines (48.8 versus 42.3 months [HR = 0.79, 95 percent CI, 0.62 -- 0.99]).
16:10  KMI Kinder Morgan beats by $0.03, beats on revs; reaffirms dividend boost; sees FY18 adj. EBITDA +7.5% to $7.5 bln (19.57 +0.18)

  • Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $0.21 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.03 better than the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.18; revenues rose 7.2% year/year to $3.63 bln vs the $3.52 bln Capital IQ Consensus. distributable cash flow (DCF) of $0.53 per common share, representing 4 percent growth over the fourth quarter of 2016, resulting in $910 million of excess DCF above the dividend. The increase in DCF was driven by greater contributions from the Natural Gas, Terminals and Products Pipelines Business Units, as well as from Kinder Morgan Canada, partially offset by decreased contributions from CO2.
  • The board of directors approved a cash dividend of $0.125 per share for the fourth quarter ($0.50 annualized) payable on February 15, 2018, to common stockholders of record as of the close of business on January 31, 2018. KMI continues to expect to increase its dividend to $0.80 per share for 2018 ($0.20 per share for Q1 2018).
  • For 2018, KMI's budget is set to declare dividends of $0.80 per common share, achieve DCF of ~$4.57 billion ($2.05 per common share) and Adjusted EBITDA of ~$7.5 billion. KMI also budgeted to invest $2.2 billion in growth projects during 2018 (excluding growth capital expected to be funded by KML), to be funded with internally generated cash flow without the need to access equity markets, and to end the year with a Net Debt-to-Adjusted EBITDA ratio of ~5.1 times. KMI previously announced it will further enhance shareholder value through a $2 billion share buy-back program. KMI's Board of Directors authorized the program to begin in December 2017, and during that month KMI repurchased ~14 million shares for ~$250 million. In 2018, KMI plans to further utilize this program opportunistically.
16:08  PRTK Paratek Pharma announces public offering of $50.0 Mln of common stock. (17.67 -0.07)

16:07  ESIO Electro Scientific expects prelim Q3 revs above consensus and Q3 adj. EPS above the guided range (22.01 +1.91)

  • Expects to report revenue of between $106 and $111 million, Capital IQ consensus $85 mln (Prior $80-90 mln)
  • Adjusted earnings per diluted share that exceeds the guided range provided on November 1 (Guidance was $0.48-0.60, Capital IQ consensus is $0.55).
  • Expects to report third quarter bookings of approximately $134 million, up from $44.1 million in the third quarter of 2017.
16:07  SMHI SEACOR Marine announces final formation of SEACOSCO Offshore LLC, a jointly owned Marshall Islands company with affiliates of COSCO SHIPPING GROUP (14.09 +0.09)

SEACOSCO will take title to seven of the PSVs in 2018 and one in 2019. Thereafter, the Shipyard, at their cost, will store the PSVs at their facility for periods ranging from six to 18 months. The storage period can be shortened by mutual agreement.

  • SEACOSCO will be funded 30% with equity and 70% with debt financing secured by the PSVs on a non-recourse basis to the equity owners. Aggregate total consideration for the eight PSVs, including the battery system, is approximately $161.1 million. SEACOR Marine's total cash outlay is approximately $22.4 million, with approximately $20.0 million payable in the first quarter of 2018 and the balance due over the next 14 months as vessels and the Rolls Royce battery equipment are delivered.
16:07  IIPR Innovative Industrial Properties announces public offering of 1 mln shares of common stock (31.30 -2.49)

 The Company intends to use the net proceeds from this offering to invest in specialized industrial real estate assets that support the regulated medical-use cannabis cultivation and processing industry that are consistent with its investment strategy, and for general corporate purposes.
16:06  EMR Emerson acquires ProSys; terms not disclosed (73.07 +0.24)

ProSys is a global supplier of software and services that increase production and safety for the chemical, oil and gas, pulp and paper, and refining industries.
16:06  PTC PTC beats by $0.01, beats on revs; guides Q2 EPS in-line, revs in-line; guides FY18 EPS in-line, revs above consensus (66.70 +1.41)

  • Reports Q1 (Dec) earnings of $0.31 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.01 better than the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.30; revenues rose 7.0% year/year to $306.44 mln vs the $300.17 mln Capital IQ Consensus.
    • First quarter license and subscription bookings were $104 million and subscription mix was 67%
    • Total deferred revenue, billed and unbilled, was $1.17 billion, an increase of 42% from the same period last year
    • First quarter subscription Annualized Recurring Revenue (ARR) was $402 million, an increase of $183 million or 84% from the same period last year
  • "We are very pleased with our first quarter fiscal 2018 results and the continuing momentum we see in our business," said James Heppelmann, President and CEO, PTC. "Bookings of $104 million exceeded the high end of our guidance range by $12 million, powered by large strategic wins in our Solutions business with marquee customers like BMW, momentum in our IoT business where we had five deals with bookings of over $1 million, and strength in the channel."
  • Co issues in-line guidance for Q2, sees EPS of $0.28-0.32, excluding non-recurring items, vs. $0.32 Capital IQ Consensus Estimate; sees Q2 revs of $300-305 mln vs. $302.53 mln Capital IQ Consensus Estimate.
  • Co issues guidance for FY18, sees EPS of $1.29-1.39, excluding non-recurring items, vs. $1.36 Capital IQ Consensus Estimate; sees FY18 revs of $1.235-1.25 bln vs. $1.23 bln Capital IQ Consensus Estimate.
16:02  AGIO Agios Pharma announces proposed offering of up to $400 mln of its common stock (70.33 +1.53)

Agios also intends to grant the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase from it up to an additional 15% of the shares of common stock offered in the public offering. All of the shares in the offering are to be sold by Agios. The proceeds of the offering are expected to be used to fund the company's research, clinical development and pre-commercial activities. The offering is subject to market and other conditions, and there can be no assurance as to whether or when the offering may be completed.
16:02  OPGN OpGen to implement a 1-for-25 reverse stock split of its common stock effective January 19 (0.17 -0.02)

16:02  MG Mistras Group reaffirms 2017 guidance, discloses loss of large contract in the Challenged Region will have adverse impact on 2018 (22.58 +0.15)

Co states, "The Company has previously reported results for its Services segment both inclusive and exclusive of results pertaining to a previously identified challenged region which is dominated by a large customer contract (the Challenged Region). The Company was recently notified that its large customer within the Challenged Region plans to discontinue using the Company's services in Q2 of 2018, despite the Company's solid execution for this customer in 2017 as well as over the life of the contract. The Company expects revenues for this specific customer within its Challenged Region to be reduced by approximately $40 million in 2018. However, the Company further expects that its consolidated revenues will increase on a net basis in 2018, inclusive of this reduction. The Company expects it will achieve double digit increases in revenues in its International and Products and Systems segments, as well as in its Services segment, exclusive of the Challenged Region... Although the loss of the large contract in the Challenged Region will have an adverse impact upon the Company's results, the Company expects that its consolidated operating income and adjusted EBITDA will experience a significant net increase in 2018, driven by the same factors listed above, as well as by the beneficial impact of the Company's 2017 cost reduction program."
16:02  FOLD Amicus Therapeutics commences commercial launch of the precision medicine Galafold in Spain following final pricing and reimbursement (15.78 +0.71)

Galafold is now reimbursed in Spain for long-term treatment of adults and adolescents aged 16 years and older with a confirmed diagnosis of Fabry disease (alpha-galactosidase A deficiency) and who have an amenable mutation.
16:01  ARWR Arrowhead to offer and sell shares of its common stock in an underwritten offering; size not disclosed (5.72 +0.12)


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