Here’s Why Alibaba Group Holdings, Alphabet, and Valeant Pharmaceuticals Are in Spotlight Today

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US stocks are in the green on Thursday, as investors react to a wave of strong earnings reports from the retail sector. A small decline in weekly jobless claims has also spurred the market to go higher.

In this article we’ll take a look at the results released by Shake Shack Inc (NYSE:SHAK), Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE:BABA) and Macy’s Inc (NYSE:M), and the latest developments at Valeant Pharmaceuticals Intl Inc (NYSE:VRX) and Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL).

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Weak Sales Sink Shake Shack

Shake Shack Inc (NYSE:SHAK)’s stock is down by some 7% so far today, despite surpassing analysts’ forecasts for the second quarter. Investors were clearly not happy with the company’s same-store sales, which rose just 4.5%, below expectations of a 4.8% increase. Shake Shack posted $66.5 million in revenue and earnings of $0.14 per share, topping estimates of $0.13 per share on $63.1 million in revenue. The company also adjusted its full-year guidance as it now expects revenues of $253 to $256 million, above the consensus of $251.9 million. Analysts at Jefferies reacted quickly and lowered their price target to $36 from $38 per share, but maintained their ‘Hold’ rating. Hedge fund interest in Shake Shack Inc (NYSE:SHAK) picked up during the first quarter, as the number of long positions rose to 14 at the end of March, from 11 registered three months earlier.

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Yet Another Controversy

Valeant Pharmaceuticals Intl Inc (NYSE:VRX)‘s woes seem to be far from over. The company is under criminal investigations as the U.S. attorney’s office is looking into the possibility that Valeant and Philidor Rx Services LLC, a now defunct mail-order-pharmacy, defrauded insurers by hiding their relationship. As Philidor helped patients get insurance coverage for Valeant drugs instead of cheaper alternatives, prosecutors are trying to find out if insurers knew about the close ties between the two companies or perceived Philidor as neutral. Valeant’s stock lost nearly 10% in Thursday intraday trading and are currently down by 75% for the year. Despite all its woes, Valeant Pharmaceuticals Intl Inc (NYSE:VRX) is still backed by billionaire Bill Ackman, who’s fund, Pershing Square, holds a 9% stake in the company.

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Turn the page to see why Alphabet’s shares are slightly down today, what’s the deal with Alibaba’s second quarter and why investors are going crazy over Macy’s.

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