Editor’s Note: Related Tickers: Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT), Peabody Energy Corporation (NYSE:BTU), United States Natural Gas Fund, LP (NYSEARCA:UNG), Amarin Corporation plc (ADR) (NASDAQ:AMRN), Cypress Semiconductor Corporation (NASDAQ:CY), Travelzoo Inc. (NASDAQ:TZOO), Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ)
Walmart goes “All In” on energy efficiency and renewables (al.com)
If Walmart was playing a game of poker with its energy portfolio, it just went “all in” and placed its bet on renewables and energy efficiency. This week, just in time for Earth Day, the retail giant’s President and CEO Mike Duke announced the company is taking its next step on the path to achieving Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT)’s goal of being supplied 100 percent by renewable energy. The plan to accomplish this task in 7 short years was unveiled at Walmart’s Global Sustainability Milestone Meeting. To meet the goal by 2020, two commitments were made at the conference.
Peabody Energy objects to bankruptcy probe by Patriot Coal (STLtoday.com)
Patriot Coal’s disputes with its former parent and creditors is intensifying as Peabody Energy Corporation (NYSE:BTU) contests a probe over Patriot’s 2007 spinoff and creditors differ over whether the company is more likely to liquidate with a trustee. Peabody is objecting to Patriot’s proposal to investigate possible claims, saying the coal producer already plans to pursue a lawsuit and has set aside $2 million to fund it. In a filing Tuesday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in St. Louis, where both companies are based, Peabody said that it is already cooperating with information requests and restoring old e-mails and records at its own cost.
Why It Suddenly Pays to Own the Natural Gas ETF (Barron’s)
For years, fund experts warned buy-and-hold investors against owning the United States Natural Gas Fund, LP (NYSEARCA:UNG), whose returns are tied to the futures market — not to spot gas prices. But for a few months now, this exchange-traded fund has been working for people other than the fast traders who are its primary clientele. The fund is ahead by about 21% on the year — that’s only a few percentage points behind spot gas’ 25% rise. What changed? The futures market that drives this fund has, for the moment, gotten more benign for investors with a longer view. The change is that the phenomenon of “contango,” meaning the upward-sloping curve of gas futures contracts that usually acts as a headwind against commodity-futures ETFs over longer periods, has flattened out. This flattening means it costs less to shift from one set of futures to the next.
Amarin Announces Approval of Supplemental New Drug Application for Chemport as Additional Vascepa(R) Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient Supplier (GlobeNewswire)
Amarin Corporation plc (ADR) (NASDAQ:AMRN), a biopharmaceutical company focused on the commercialization and development of therapeutics to improve cardiovascular health, announced today the approval of the Supplemental New Drug Application (sNDA) to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to add Chemport, Inc. as an additional Vascepa® (icosapent ethyl) active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) supplier. “This sNDA approval of Chemport as a supplier of Vascepa marks another significant step for Amarin toward the goal of expanding our global supply chain to support expected Vascepa demand, diversify our supply base, and ensure cost-efficient supply,” stated Joseph Zakrzewski, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Amarin Corporation plc (ADR) (NASDAQ:AMRN). “The addition of Chemport as an approved API supplier supplements Amarin’s current proven API supply source, Nisshin Pharma, Inc.”
Cypress Semiconductor Corporation (CY): Can This Stock Extend Its Rally Post Earnings? (Insider Monkey)
The third week of April will see a number of companies reporting results. Some will provide positive momentum to their stock price with solid numbers and/or a decent outlook, while some will be gunning for a turnaround in their fortunes. Chipmaker Cypress Semiconductor Corporation (NASDAQ:CY) falls in…
…the latter category, as the company looks to do better in 2013 after crashing 36% last calendar year. Cypress reports first-quarter results on Apr. 18. The company has been waiting on the success of Android tablets for quite some time now, but to no effect. Moreover, Cypress has been reeling under the effects of tepid economic conditions, and its products have not been finding good traction. However, the stock has seen a sort of mini rally since the middle of February, when Needham upgraded it to a Buy from Hold.
Travelzoo 1st-quarter profit jumps (CNBC.com)
Travelzoo Inc. (NASDAQ:TZOO) said on Thursday that its first-quarter net income jumped 49 percent, although its adjusted profit fell from last year. The online travel deals company earned $5.6 million, or 36 cents per share, for the quarter that ended March 31. That was up from $3.7 million, or 23 cents per share, during the same period last year. Revenue rose 7 percent to $42.2 million, from $39.3 million a year earlier.
Why Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ) Will Stay On Top Of The LTE Market (Insider Monkey)
The 4G LTE market is a huge landscape, encompassing both private and government organizations. There is enormous gain for mobile providers that can deliver efficient solutions for 4G LTE-enabled devices to surf the web, post status-updates, share music and download files at speed faster than other networks. So when Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) announced that it has activated 4G LTE coverage to two sites in Delaware County in New York, I was not surprised by the initiative. Over the past two years, Verizon has made the 4G LTE network available to more than 273 million people across the US. Recently, the company expanded the network to Cayuga County, Chautauqua County, Rochester, Syracuse, and Utica-Rome in the New York area. The initiative has allowed Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) to extend its 4G LTE network, provide speed for surfing the internet, and strengthened the company’s investment in local exchanges used for business and consumer communications.
‘I Jumped to Save My Body’: Walmart Slammed Over Nicaragua Stabbings and Bangladesh Fire (The Nation)
Survivors of a factory fire in Bangladesh and an armed assault in Nicaragua both called this week for Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) to crack down on abuses in its global supply chain. Former garment worker Sumi Abedin, who jumped from a third story window to escape Bangladesh’s Tazreen factory, will lead a mock “funeral procession” tonight to the New York City home of Walmart board member Michele Burns. Tomorrow, students and other supporters will converge on the New York and Los Angeles offices of SAE-A, a Walmart contractor accused of fomenting violence against union activists. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) did not respond to a request for comment on either case.
Nat Gas Rises as Chilly Weather Keeps Stockpiles Low (UNG) (StreetInsider.com)
United States Natural Gas Fund, LP (NYSEARCA:UNG) is popping Thursday following data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) showing a lower-than-expected increase in stockpiles last week. Latest information pointed to a 31 billion cubic feet (bcf) increase in inventory, versus expectations calling for a 34 bcf rise.
Coal miner Peabody posts 1Q loss, outlook upbeat (MiamiHerald.com)
Coal miner Peabody Energy Corporation (NYSE:BTU) said Thursday that it posted a loss for the first three months of the year on lower U.S. shipments and prices for its Australian coal, though the results still beat Wall Street’s expectations. St. Louis-based Peabody, the world’s biggest private-sector coal producer, cautioned…
…that the current quarter could be similarly impaired, as it forecast earnings in a range of a loss of 25 cents per share to a penny per share profit. The company did not offer guidance for the full year. Like other coal companies, Peabody has struggled amid stubbornly soft demand that has driven down coal prices as utilities turned to cheaper natural gas to generate electricity. But Peabody Energy Corporation (NYSE:BTU) has insisted there have been encouraging signs of recovery, including expectations of rising U.S. coal demand and Asian imports as natural gas prices tick up.
No NCE Decison For Amarin’s Vascepa: The Launch Trudges Along (Seeking Alpha)
It was another month, and another non-decision on the NCE status of Amarin Corporation plc (ADR) (NASDAQ:AMRN)’s Vascepa (icosapent ethyl), which is an unsurprising but significant short-term blow to investor sentiment. This was reflected quite well with the price action in AMRN last Friday, which was mildly bearish after the FDA updated the Orange Book for April. No NCE decision for Vascepa means no clarity on its actual period of drug exclusivity in the United States, and Amarin commentary suggests that a non-decision also interferes with the company’s potential to form partnerships with big pharma companies that could (and would) market Vascepa more effectively.
Cypress profit forecast misses estimates, shares fall (Yahoo! News)
Cypress Semiconductor Corporation (NASDAQ:CY), a maker of touch-sensing chips for cellphones, said it expected margins to shrink in the second-quarter and it forecast a profit that fell short of market expectations, sending its shares down 10 percent. The company, whose touch controllers are used in devices made by South Korea’s Samsung Electronics Co, said it expects a gross margin of about 51 percent in the second quarter, down 6 percentage points from a year earlier. Lower margins at its non-core emerging technologies business, whose products include remote temperature control devices, is expected to weigh on overall margins in the second quarter, a Cypress Semiconductor Corporation (NASDAQ:CY) executive said on a call with analysts.
Travelzoo notches sluggish growth, pins hopes on hotels (Skift)
Deal-site Travelzoo Inc. (NASDAQ:TZOO)’s largest business region is North America, where the company is feeling pressure as it continues to develop a hotel-booking platform. The company released its first quarter results today, and its operating profit in North America fell 22.5% to $5.5 million on a sluggish revenue increase of 5% to $30.2 million. “The decrease in operating profit was a result of increased expenses related to sales force expansion, hotel booking platform development, traffic acquisition and subscriber marketing,” Travelzoo Inc. (NASDAQ:TZOO) stated about its North America business.
Verizon Profit and Revenue Climb (New York Times)
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) 0n Thursday reported a healthy profit, driven primarily by its booming wireless business, which brought in millions of smartphone sales and revenue from subscribers that just keeps growing. Net income in the first quarter rose 15.8 percent to $1.95 billion, or 68 cents a share, from the same quarter a year earlier, while revenue climbed 4.2 percent to $29.4 billion, the company said. The net income was above the expectations of Wall Street analysts. They had expected 66 cents a share and revenue of $28.2 billion, according to a survey of analysts by FactSet.