The Day Ahead: Weight Watchers Shares Trim Down

 | Feb 14, 2014 | 8:31 AM EST  | Comments
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U.S. futures have reversed earlier weakness and pushed out of the red and into the green this Valentine's Day, ahead of consumer confidence and factory data due later this morning.

European markets were buoyant on signs of growth in the eurozone, while Asian markets finished mostly higher overnight as Japan's Nikkei 225 lagged on weakness in the yen.

In earnings news, investors pounded down shares of Weight Watchers (WTW) by more than 20% in premarket trading. Late Thursday, the weight-loss company issued a wide net-income miss and lowered full-year guidance below analyst views. Another earnings highlight last night came from American International Group (AIG), which posted an upside profit surprise of $0.18 per share and raised its dividend. And Kraft Foods (KRFT) offered mixed results, beating sales estimates but missing on earnings.

This morning, J.M. Smucker's (SJM) quarterly profit and sales missed Wall Street forecasts and the jelly giant lowered its full-year guidance. Automotive supplier TRW Automotive (TRW) surpassed profit views but fell short on revenue. Hyatt Hotels (H) booked profit and revenue beats in the fourth quarter. Meanwhile, apparel and footwear maker V.F. Corp. (VFC) missed earnings estimates by $0.02 per share and disappointed on sales, sending shares more than 5% lower.

In company news, Action Alerts PLUS holding Occidental (OXY) made a series of moves after Thursday's close, the most prominent one being the announced split of its California operations. The oil-and-gas producer also raised its share-buyback authorization and dividend. In an Alert, portfolio co-manager Stephanie Link called this "good news" and "the first steps in the company's 'shrink-to-grow' strategy." In retail, men's clothier Jos. A. Bank (JOSB) said it would buy the Eddie Bauer fashion brand for $825 million. Shares shed about 3% in early trading.

On the economic docket, consumer sentiment comes out at 9:55 a.m. ET; industrial production data are due at 9:15 a.m.; and import and export prices come out at 8:30 a.m.

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