Apple Slides After Mizuho Downgrade, Price Target Cut

Suddenly the penguins knives are out for the world’s biggest company, and exactly one week after Pacific Crest downgraded Apple to “Sector Weight” and a $145PT, perhaps a harbinger of what was to come later in the week, overnight another bank, Japan’s Mizuho, has also taken the machete to its own growth forecasts of Tim Cook’s juggernaut, and downgraded the iPhone maker to neutral from buy, cutting the price target from $160 to $150, claiming the best case scenario is now priced into the shares.
Of course, the analyst is merely the first of many price and momentum chasers who has adjusted his sentiment based on what the market does, and after last Friday’s tech sector drubbing we expect many more such downgrades in the days to come.
Here are the summary highlights from Lamba’s note:
We are downgrading Apple to Neutral from Buy while adjusting our PT to $150 from $160. The stock has meaningfully outperformed on a YTD basis and we believe enthusiasm around the upcoming product cycle is fully captured at current levels, with limited upside to estimates from here on out. Our sensitivity work indicates bull case EPS of around $11 which, along with a cycle-peak multiple, indicates limited upside to the stock. Our LTVC work suggests more muted gains as well. As such, we move to the sidelines despite our expectations of a strong iPhone 8 cycle

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 12, 2017.

Is the Chain-Restaurant Recession Becoming Structural?

A 15-month downturn, longest since 2009, and no end in sight. There’s simply no respite for chain restaurants. Industry-wide, same-store sales fell again in May. The last time, same-store sales actually rose year-over-year was in February 2016. On that basis, the chain-restaurant recession is now in its 15th month, the longest downturn since the Financial Crisis.
In May, same store sales fell 1.1% year-over-year. Same-store foot traffic fell 3.0%. Food sales were down, and alcohol sales were down, according to TDn2K’s Restaurant Industry Snapshot, tracking sales at 27,000 restaurant units from 155 brands, generating about $67 billion in annual revenue. But the average amount of the check per person increased by 2%, and not because they ordered more food and booze, but because prices rose.
Florida was the least bad region, with same-store sales up 0.1% and foot traffic down ‘only’ 1.9%. Texas was the worst region with sales down 2.4% and foot traffic down 4.3%. Of the 196 markets, 140 (71%) experienced sales declines.

This post was published at Wolf Street on Jun 12, 2017.

One & Done: Fed Rate Hikes End in June

This is a syndicated repost courtesy of theinstitutionalriskanalyst. To view original, click here. Reposted with permission.
‘Stock prices have reached what looks like a permanently high plateau.’
Irving Fisher
October 1929
This Thursday The IRA’s Christopher Whalen will be in Washington to participate in an event at Cato Institute, ‘Financial Crisis and Reform,’ We’ll talk with Cato’s Ike Brannon about whether enough has been done to ‘fix’ the problem, real or imagined, with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The question posed by the title of the Cato Institute panel suggests that Washington has the slightest idea about the ‘problem’ in the mortgage business much less a solution.

This post was published at Wall Street Examiner by.

Bill Blain: “It’s A FUBAR Moment Of Monumental Proportions”

In his characteristically unique style, this morning Mint’s Bill Blain has set his sights, and commentary, on the recent elections in the UK and France, the former of which he summarizes as a “FUBAR moment of monumental proportions” while the latter is – well, who knows, but “at least Macron has a plan.”
His latest “Blain’s Morning Porridge” note below:
France or the UK – A Tale of Two Cities… but mainly who is going to clear up?

‘You have sat too long for any good you have been doing lately. Depart, I say, and let us have done with you. In the name of God, go!’ Markets are a function of politics and confidence. Politics boils down to a very simple equation: do people like you? Confidence boils down to the likelihood politicians will successfully make it better. Markets bet on the outcomes.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 12, 2017.

“Tech Wreck” Goes Global Dragging Worldwide Markets Lower; Cable, USDJPY Slide

First the bad news: following Friday’s “tech wreck” European equity markets have opened lower, with the Stoxx 600 sliding 0.9% and back under the 50DMA for the first time since December, dragged by selloff in tech shares, mirroring Asian markets as Friday’s “FAAMG” volatility in U. S. markets spreads globally, battering shares from South Korea to the Netherlands. European banks lag as the Spanish regulator stepped in to prevent another bank collapse, this time of LiberBank which we profiled yesterday, by banning short-selling in the regional commercial bank to mitigate Popular-related contagion.
Samsung Electronics, ASML Holding and Tencent Holdings led declines in Europe and Asia, dragging down benchmark indexes according to Bloomberg. U. S. stock futures, which ignored Friday’s tech move, also fell as markets continue to digest the Nasdaq 100’s plunge on Friday. Europe’s tech index fell as much as 2.8% to put it on track for its biggest one-day loss since October. The index had reached a 15-year high earlier this month and has soared around 40 percent over the last year

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 12, 2017.

MASSIVE CENTRAL BANK ASSET PURCHASES: Last Ditch Effort To Save Economy & Cap Gold Price

The Central banks bought a staggering $1.5 trillion in assets in the first five months of the year to keep the economy from imploding while at the same time, capping the gold price. Yes, it’s true…. $300 billion a month of Central bank asset purchases pushes up STOCK, BOND and REAL ESTATE values while it depresses or caps the gold (or silver) price.
The amount of Central bank asset purchases are now reaching insane levels. And they have to. It is the same thing as being a drug addict. Once, someone starts down the road of drug addiction, it takes more and more of the drug to reach the same effect. Thus, when Central banks started purchasing assets to prop up the market, they have to continue, and they have to continue buying even more.
In a previous article, I published this chart showing Central bank asset purchases up until the first four months of 2017.

This post was published at SRSrocco Report on JUNE 11, 2017.

GE CEO Jeff Immelt To Step Down

In a major shakeup at one of the largest US industrial conglomerates, General Electric said Monday Jeff Immelt, 61, would step down as CEO and Chairman, a move that had been expected by many. Immelt will remain Chairman of the Board through his retirement from the company on December 31, 2017.
John Flannery, 55, the company’s current president and CEO of GE Healthcare, will take over as companywide CEO effective August 1, concluding a 16 years period during which the stock price of GE has barely budged.
The company said that the executive changes are result of succession plan run by GE Board since 2011. Flannery joined GE Healthcare in 2014, led turnaround, increasing organic revenue by 5%, and margins by 100 bps in 2016; began career at GE Capital in 1987.
The company also said that CFO Jeff Bornstein has been promoted to vice chairman.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 12, 2017.