Bearish Analyst Says Worst of Times May Be Over for Snap: LIVE MARKETS BLOG

 | May 21, 2018 | 3:08 PM EDT
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Bearish Analyst Says Worst of Times May Be Over for Snap

Snap (SNAP) shares were up 1.56% Monday afternoon after noted MoffettNathanson bull Michael Nathanson said that the worst may be over for the struggling social media company. 

"We worry that as Snap reverses that ill-conceived redesign, user growth will improve which could help the narrative," Nathanson said. "We are upgrading Snap ... primarily based on concerns that our sell call and bearish sentiment are reflected in consensus views and estimates."

Nathanson raised his price target to $9 from $7. 

Blackstone Moves From Hilton to LaSalle Hotel Properties

Less than a week after exiting its position in Hilton Worldwide Holdings, private equity firm Blackstone Group (BKS) announced that it reached a deal to purchase luxury hotel owner LaSalle Hotel Properties (LHO) for nearly $3.7 billion. 

LaSalle owns 41 hotels in 11 U.S. markets. Blackstone will pay $33.50 in cash for the company. 

LaSalle shares were up 5.6% to $33.68 in afternoon trading Monday. The deal is worth a total of $4.8 billion including debt. 

Consumer Reports Fails to Endorse Model 3, Tesla Shares Pare Gains

Tesla Inc. (TSLA) is hoping that its budget Model 3 sedan can compete with the likes of Audi's A4 and BMWs 3 Series, but it is not going to any help from trusted auto rater Consumer Reports. 

The firm failed to recommend the vehicle saying that its testers "found flaws-big flaws-such as long stopping distances in our emergency braking test and difficult-to-use controls," in its review of the vehicle. 

Tesla's shares were riding a high going into the afternoon session, but Monday's report caused the stock to pare some of its gains. Still, Tesla shares were up 2.75% with about three hours left in trading Monday. 

Icahn Sues AmTrust Financial Over Plans to Go Private

Activist Investor Carl Icahn filed a lawsuit against AmTrust Financial Services (AFSI) and CEO Barry Zyskind over the company's plans to go private, saying that the deal undervalues the company. 

Icahn, whole holds an 18.4 million 9.4% stake in the company, says that the transaction is occurring at the wrong price at the wrong time. 

Icahn described the transaction as an attempt for two of the company's largest shareholders, Zyskind and board members George and Leak Karfunkel, to consolidate power at a time when the company's stock is vulnerable. 

Earlier this year, the insurer unveiled a $2.7 billion plan to go private. AmTrust was up 1.1% Monday afternoon. 

Barclays Cleared By  UK Court in Qatar Deal

U.K. investment Bank Barclays was cleared of charges by the U.K.'s Crown Court over allegations that it raised billions of pounds from Qatar in order to avoid a government bailout in 2008. 

Barclays took a 12 billion pound loan from Qatar Holdings, which is owned by the state of Qatar, in 2008, and in return loaned 2.3 billion back to Qatar Holdings. 

Barclays did admit that the Serious Fraud Office will likely go to the High Court to try to reinstate the charges. 

Elliott Convinces Hyundai Mobis to Drop Out of $8.8 Billion Deal

Activist hedge fund Elliott Management got a win Monday after its efforts to convince Hyundai Car-Parts Affiliate, Hyundai Mobis, to drop plans to sell a chunk of itself for $8.8 billion to Hyundai Glovis. 

Glass Lewis & Co. and Institutional Shareholder Services formally declared their opposition to the merger earlier this month, in addition to opposition from Elliott Management, which has a $1 billion stake in the Korean automaker.

Mobis shares were up more than 1% following news of their decision. 

ESPN Scores Ratings Win With Eastern Conference Finals

The declining ratings that plagued the NFL all year aren't affecting the NBA in the same way.

Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Boston Celtics averaged a 5.1 metered rating on ESPN (DIS) Saturday, an 11% increase from the network's broadcast of the Western Conference Finals last year. 

The game peaked with a 5.7 metered rating three different times during the broadcast, even though the game wasn't particularly entertaining, resulting in a 30-point blowout for the Cavaliers. 

Game 4 of the best of 7 series is Monday night with the Cavaliers hoping to even the series with the Celtics at two apiece. 

Tesla Rises After Announcing Model 3 Delivery Delays ar Down

Tesla (TSLA) may finally be getting its Model 3 production issues under control after announcing that it is accelerating delivery timelines for new orders. 

Tesla, which had been guiding a 12 to 18-month delay for customers looking to purchase the cheapest of the company's vehicle options, now says that it is cutting that waiting time in half to between 4 to 6 months. 

Tesla shares got a boost premarket on the news, rising 1.65% to $281.39 ahead of the opening bell Monday. 


U.S. futures were showing a lot of strength ahead of Monday's opening bell, led by the Dow, which was indicating an open more than 200 points higher. 

Dow futures were climbing 0.91%, indicating an open 225 points higher, while Nasdaq futures were up 0.68%, indicating an open 49 points higher, and S&P futures were up 0.57%, indicating an open 16 points higher. 

In Asia, markets had a strong day of trading, led by the Shanghai Composite which rose 0.64% while the Hang Seng climbed 0.6%, and the Nikkei rose 0.31%. 

In Europe, The DAX in Germany was closed for trading, but the FTSE 100 gained 0.64%, and the CAC 40 rose 0.5% with about four hours left in trading. 

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