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Jan 31

Highlights:

Cutting Back

Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. announced Monday it would reduce the amount it will pay for rival Rite Aid by at least $2 billion, after the two companies struggled to get antitrust enforces to bless their deal. The two companies will now sell more stores as they seek to satisfy regulators at the Federal Trade Commission, which has been reviewing the combination. Walgreens in October 2015 agreed to purchase Rite Aid for $9 a share, or around $9.4 billion to form a drugstore chain with more than 10,000 U.S. stores. FTC offers raised concerns that a combined company would hold too much sway in negotiations with pharmacy-benefits managers like Express Scripts Holding Co, who handle corporate and government drug plans. To accommodate for the sale of additional stores both companies agreed to extend their merger deadline to July. Shares of Rite Aid tumbled 17% to $5.72 on Monday while shares of Walgreens shares barely moved.

You’re In Trouble

US and UK regulators have fined Deutsche Bank $630 million for allowing clients to launder money from Russia. Under the scheme, clients illegally moved $10 billion out of Russia by buying shares in Moscow using roubles before their counterparts in the bank’s London office sold the same stock at the same prices using pounds. During the U.S and UK investigation authorities found the trades were carried out between 2011 and 2015. In addition to paying the settlement, the bank will also be required to hire an outside monitor to review its internal compliance measures. The bank had already set aside money to the cover the settlement.

Markets:

Asia: Asian markets fell on Tuesday after yesterday’s Wall Street sell off. Several markets remain closed for New Year celebrations.

Europe: European shares closed lower on Monday as global investors reacted to Trump’s temporary immigration band.

U.S: U.S markets closed lower on Monday as investors wonder if Trump can really uphold all his promises. DJIA: -122.65 19,971.13 NASDAQ: -47.07 5,613.71 S&P: -13.79 2,280.90

Word of The Day:

Treasury Bond/T-Bond

A fixed-interest, tradable U.S government debt security with a maturity of more than 10 years. Treasury bonds pay semi-annual interest payments and the income received is taxed only at the federal level.

Dinner or Drink:

Absolut Trouble

1 1/2 oz. Absolut® Citron vodka

1 oz. Grand Marnier® orange liqueur

1/2 oz. grenadine syrup
1 oz. orange juice

Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into an old-fashioned glass.

Like our drink today, click here for more.

Jan 30

Highlights:

Victim of Success

On Friday, coffee giant Starbucks reported earnings, posting a 3% increase in U.S same store sales growth lower than the 4% expected by analyst. It marks the company’s fifth consecutive quarter of missed expectations for U.S. same store sales, its largest market. The cause according to the company was the success off their mobile order app. The new app, which was created to reduce to reduce long lines at cash registered, has instead caused longer lines at the pickup counter deterring sales. The issue caused the company to lower its revenue forecast for the year. Starbucks plans on fixing the overload issues with better signage, text messages telling customers when their orders are ready, and deploying of employees to hand off mobile orders.

No Fly

Delta airlines suffered a shutdown of its essential IT systems around 6:30 pm on Sunday causing 170 flight cancelations and approximately 80 fights scheduled for Monday after the company issued a ground stop. Early Monday, the airline issued a statement saying it had recovered from the systems outage and that all systems and flights were back on track. In addition to Delta, KLM, Virgin America, and Virgin Atlantic all experienced delays cause by reservation system outage issues. The outage was the second major outage in less than year for Delta.

Markets:

Asia: Asian markets, not closed for New Year celebration, closed mostly lower as investors respond to the U.S immigration suspension.

Europe: European shares closed lower as investors digested corporate earnings and fluctuations in currency markets.

U.S: U.S markets closed flat on Friday as investors took the day off. DJIA: -7.13 20,093.78  S&P: -1.99 2,294.69 NASDAQ: +5.61 5,660.78

Word of The Day:

Bund

A bond issued by the Germany federal government in 10- and 30- year denominations. German bunds are the equivalent of U.S Treasury bonds.

Dinner or Drink:

A Warm Welcome

  • 1 1/2 part Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
  • 1 Egg White
  • 1/2-part Lime Juice
  • 1/2-part Simple Syrup
  • 1/4-part Apple Syrup
  • Grated Nutmeg

Add egg white, lime juice, simple syrup, spiced apple syrup, and Basil Hayden’s® Bourbon in a shaker. Give it a nice dry shake to mix all the ingredients together, then add ice and shake again so your cocktail is chilled when strained. The cocktail will have a nice froth on top. Grate fresh nutmeg, sprinkle on top for garnish and enjoy.

 

 

Jan 26

Highlights:

Good Medicine….

U.S. health care giant Johnson & Johnson has agreed to acquire Swiss biotech company Actellion in a $30 billion all-cash deal that includes the spinning off of Actelion’s research and development pipeline. The acquisitions gives J&J access to the Swiss company’s line up of high-price, high-margin medicines for rare diseases, including the company’s largest product Remicade. The offer of $280 per share represents a 23 percent premium to Actelion’s closing price on Wednesday of 227.4 Swiss francs. The deal is expected to close by the end of the second quarter however, it will need both Actelion shareholder and regulatory approval.

Virtual Reality….

Facebook announced Wednesday Hugo Barra, a former executive at Google and Chinese phone maker Xiaomi, will lead the company’s virtual reality business. The move puts to rest questions who would lead the company after it ran into several recent speedbumps. Facebook paid $2 billion to acquire Oculus almost three years ago, as a play on the up and coming world of Virtual Reality. The investment has yet paid off as sales of the companies’ headsets remain sluggish. On top of that, the company is dealing with a lawsuit filed by competitor ZeniMax Media, who claims Oculus stole the technology used in its googles. If Facebook loses the case they could face shelling out as much as $2 billion in damages. Facebook still believes Virtual Reality is the next greatest things however, Mark Zuckerberg has said Facebook will likely need to invest an additional $3 billion in content in development.

Markets:

Asia: Asian markets close in the green Thursday after the Dow Jones finally hit the 20K on Wednesday.

Europe: European markets closed higher on Wednesday boosted by positive corporate earnings.

U.S: US stocks closed higher as the Dow Jones hit the magic 20K in a rally led by investor confidence that President Trump will preside over an era of U.S. growth.  DJIA: +158.80 20,066.51 NASDAQ: +55.382 5,656.34 S&P: +18.30 2,298.37

Word of The Day:

Dividends

A taxable distribution of a portion of company’s earnings that are declared by a company’s board of directors and distributed to its shareholders at the declared date.

Dinner or Drink:

Champagne Celebration

1/2 oz. orange liqueur
1/2 oz. brandy
1 sugar cube
bitters
4 oz. Champagne

 

Add Cointreau, Brandy and a sugar cube saturated with Bitters to a champagne flute. Fill with your favorite champagne. Garnish with an orange twist.

 

Like our drink today, click here for more.

Jan 25

Highlights:

Chips Anyone….

Cisco Systems Inc. announced Wednesday it will acquire AppDnamics Inc for $3.7 billion just a day before the company was scheduled to price its initial public offering.  Founded in 2008, AppDynamics helps companies track how well their apps are working or if their website is experiencing any connectivity issues or crashes. The move is another feather in Cisco hat as it works to fire up its revenue growth, which stalled after the computer industry shifted away from expensive fixed hardware and software to the cloud. The deal is expected to close in April.

New Size

McDonald’s is rolling out a new and improved Big Mac sandwich. For a limited time, McDonald’s will have two sizes of their world famous Big Mac available to customers. The new Mac Jr. will have a single-patty and all the usual Big Mac fixin’s. The change comes after a study revealed only one in five millennials had ever tried a Big Mac. To celebrate the party size version of its iconic hamburger, the fast food chain is giving away 10,000 bottles of Big Mac Special sauce starting January 26 at participating locations.

Markets:

Asia: Asian shares closed higher as investors cheered better news from Japanese export data and South Korean GDP figures.

Europe: European markets closed slightly higher on Tuesday despite disappointing corporate earnings.

U.S: U.S. stocks closed higher on Tuesday led by the banking sector. DJIA: +19,912.71 NASDAQ: +48.02 5600.96 +14.87 2,280.07

Word of The Day:

NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement)

Regulation implemented on January 1, 1994 involving Mexico, Canada, and the United States eliminating most tariffs on trade between the nations.

Dinner or Drink:

Kentucky Mulled Cider

  • 1 1/4 parts Bourbon
  • Apple Cider, Hot
  • 1 dash Allspice
  • Garnish Cinnamon Stick
  • Garnish Lemon, Sliced

Add Bourbon to a footed mug. Fill mug with hot apple cider and the dash of allspice. Garnish with a tall cinnamon stick and lemon slice.

 

 

Jan 24

Highlights:

Blocked

A federal judge has blocked Aetna’s $37 billion deal to buy rival insurer Humana, putting a monkey wrench into a merger that would reshape the U.S. health-care landscape. According to U.S. District Judge John D. Bates the transaction would violate antitrust laws by reducing competition, the ruling may bode poorly for the other huge merger deal planned between Anthem Inc and Cigna Corporation. The merger was also challenged by the Justice Department last summer and a ruling has not been made. Shares of all four insurance companies closed lower in Monday trading.

Give Me A Beat

In its continuing quest for premium content, Sprint announced Monday it will buy one third of streaming music service Tidal, which is run by rap mogul Jay Z. The deal will give Sprint customers access to exclusive content on Tidal, though they must still sign up and pay for the streaming service. Tidal’s celebrity-oriented brand and relationship with artist will be a valuable for Sprint as it looks to differentiate itself from competitors, while the music streaming market keeps expanding. Tidal’s management team will keep running the service and Sprint Chief Executive Marcelo Claure will join its board. Specific details of the deal were not released.

Markets:

Asia: Asian stocks closed mixed on Tuesday, as investors digested President Trump’s withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal.

Europe:  European markets closed lower on Monday as investor get used to the idea of a Trump presidency and what changes it may bring.

U.S: U.S markets closed lower as investors are wondering what Trump really has up his sleeves. DJIA: -27.40 19,799.85 NASDAQ: -2.39 5,552.94 S&P: -6.11 2,265.20

Word of The Day:

Correction

A negative reverse moment of at least 10% in a stock, bond, commodity or index to adjust for overvaluation. Corrections are generally temporary price declines which interrupt an uptrend in the market or an asset. The duration of a correction is shorter than a bear market or recession however, they can be precursor to either.

Dinner or Drink:

Warm Welcome

  • 1 1/2 part Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
  • 1 Egg White
  • 1/2 part Lime Juice
  • 1/2 part Simple Syrup
  • 1/4 part Apple Syrup
  • Grated Nutmeg

Add egg white, lime juice, simple syrup, spiced apple syrup, and Basil Hayden’s® Bourbon in a shaker. Give it a nice dry shake to mix all the ingredients together, then add ice and shake again so your cocktail is chilled when strained. The cocktail will have a nice froth on top. Grate fresh nutmeg, sprinkle on top for garnish and enjoy

Jan 23

Highlights:

We Are Suing You

On Friday, Apple filed a lawsuit against Qualcomm, accusing the company of charging “excessive royalties” and withholding payments in retaliation for Apple cooperation with South Korean regulators. Qualcomm provides crucial chips used in the iPhone. Apple claims Qualcomm has charged the company an unfair amount to license its cellular patents. Apple is seeking nearly $1 billion in rebate payments that were previously withheld after the company agreed to work with South Korean officials in their probe, which ended with the company being fined $850 million for forcing phone manufacturers into unfair patent licensing agreements. Apple’s lawsuit on Friday comes on the heels of the Federal Trade Commission filing its own antitrust complaint against Qualcomm for using its position in the market to push anti-competitive supply and licensing terms on cellphone companies.

The Issue

On Monday, at an event in its Seoul office, Samsung officially blamed the overheating of its Galaxy Note 7 smartphones on manufacturing and design flaws but acknowledged it had yet to determine the root cause of the failure.  The company, citing results of its own internal investigation, pointed to battery casing not being big enough which cause deformities in the corner of the battery. Samsung’s disclosure on Monday is the company’s most concerned efforts to put last summer’s Galaxy Note 7 issue behind it and move on.

Markets:

Asia: Asian markets traded sideways on Mondays, as investors awaited clarity from President Trump on possible renegotiation of NAFTA and the abandonment of the Trans-Pacific Partnership deal.

Europe: European markets closed flat on Friday as investors waited for the new President’s remarks.

U.S: U.S. equites closed higher on Friday after President Trump’s first speech took a protectionist tone.  DJIA: +94.85 19,827.25 NASDAQ:  +15.25 5,555.33 S&P: +7.62 2,271.31

Word of the Day:

Benchmark

A standard which the performance of a security, mutual fund or investment manager can be measured.

Dinner or Drink:

Cherry Avalanche

  • 1 part  Black Cherry Rum
  • 1 part  Cherry Schnapps Liqueur
  • Lime Wedges
  • Mint Sprig
  • Black Cherries

Pack rocks glass with shaved ice. Slowly pour chilled spirits over the

ice. Squeeze juice of lime on top. Garnish with sprig of mint and a black cherry.

Jan 19

Highlights:

Onward, Upward

Shares of Netflix surged as much as 9 percent in late Wednesday trading after the company posted subscriber growth that crushed its own guidance. On Wednesday, the streaming video giant reported it added 7.05 million subscribers during the fourth quarter crushing the company’s expectation of 5.2 million. The increase was the largest ever quarterly subscriber growth in its history. In the fourth quarter Netflix added 1.93 million memberships in the U.S and 5.12 million internationally. Analyst had expected an increase of 1.44 million in the U.S. and 3.73 million internationally. Some investors had been concerned Netflix would lose some of its traction as Amazon announced it would expand its Prime Video service to 200 countries however, the company doesn’t see a slowdown coming and expects to add 5.2 million this quarter.

Bumpy Ride….

Discount giant Target downgraded its quarterly earnings expectation on Wednesday, after experiencing softer than expected sales over the holiday season. Sales at Target stores open at least a year fell more than 3% during November and December, compared to the same time last year. Online sales for the period grew 30%. According to the CEO, Brian Cornwell, Black Friday and digital sales growth weren’t enough to overcome early season sales softness and disappointing traffic trends in stores. The company reported encouraging growth in toy sales, but electronics, entertainment, food, and essentials declined more than expected. The stores disappointing sales growth highlights the struggles of big box retailers to keep up with customers’ demands for quick shopping from the comfort of the couch.

Markets:

Asia: Asian markets closed mixed on Thursday, as shares of Japanese electronics maker Toshiba tumbled on reports it is considering the sale of its semiconductor business.

Europe: European shares closed mixed on Wednesday as investors digest corporate earnings.

U.S: U.S markets closed mixed on Wednesday as investors digested remarks from Fed officials, corporate earnings and economic data. DJIA: -22.05 19,804.72 S&P: +4.00 2,271.89 NASDAQ: +16.93 5,555.65

Word of The Day:

Durable Goods

Consumer goods, such as consumer electronics, toy makers, small tool manufacturer, and jewelry, which do not have to be purchased frequently.

Dinner or Drink:

Bacon S’mores

INGREDIENTS
24 slices HORMEL® BLACK LABEL® Brown Sugar bacon
4 graham crackers, broken in half (8 squares)
1 (1.55-ounce) milk chocolate bar, quartered
4 marshmallows, toasted

DIRECTIONS

Heat oven to 400°F.  Cut each bacon slice in half.  On flat surface, arrange 2 bacon half-slices side-by-side. Weave 2 bacon half-slices in opposite direction.  Very carefully lift bacon lattice to large rimmed baking pan. Repeat with remaining bacon.  Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until crisp.  Remove from baking pan and drain. For each s’more, layer 1 graham square, 1 bacon square, 1 chocolate quarter, 1 bacon square, 1 toasted marshmallow, 1 bacon square and 1 graham square.  Serves 4.

Like our recipe today, click here for more.

 

 

Jan 18

Highlights:

Just Do It

JC Penny and Nike have teamed up to create a new Nike brand shop environment in over 600 of the big box retailer’s in store men’s departments. The new Nike shops will boast pumped up visual elements featuring world-class athletes and crisp signage to help shoppers find appealing basketball, training, running, and more. The shops will also include an expanded assortment of apparel and accessories from the world’s leading activewear brands. JC Penney is the latest retailer to boost its offering of active wear or athleisure. A category which has proven to be a lucrative niche, often boasting more robust sales than the overall clothing sector.

Drive Time

General Motors announced Tuesday it will invest an additional $1 billion in its U.S factories in 2017 and move some parts production from Mexico to the United States. The new investment is on top of the $2.9 billion the automaker announced last year. GM said the $1 billion investment will create or retain 1,500 jobs and will announce details of individual projects throughout the coming year. As part of its jobs creation GM will move axle production for its next generation full-size trucks from Mexico to Michigan. GM and other automakers have been sharply criticized by President-elect Trump for building vehicles in Mexico that are imported into the United States.

Markets:

Asia: Asian markets closed mostly higher on Wednesday as export stocks rallied on remarks from President Elect Trump comments that the stronger dollar was killing the United States.

Europe: European markets steadied on Tuesday after British Prime Minister Theresa May detailed her position on leaving the European Union.

US: U.S shares closed lower on Tuesday as investor were not feeling “risky” DJIA: -58.96 19,826.77 NASDAQ: 35.39 5,538.73 S&P: -6.75 2,267.89

Word of The Day:

Operating Margin

A measurement of what portion of a company’s revenue is left over after paying for the variable costs of production like wages or material costs. Operating margin give analyst an idea how much a company makes (before interest and taxes) for each dollar of sales. The higher a company’s operating margins, the better off the company is.

Dinner or Drink:

Cinnamon Sugar Cookie

  • 1/2-part Red Stag by Jim Beam® Black Cherry
  • 1/2 part DeKuyper® Buttershots™ Schnapps
  • 1/2 part Irish Cream
  • Cinnamon, Ground

Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a dash of fresh ground cinnamon.

Jan 17

Highlights:

Pay Up Buddy

On Friday, Takata, plead guilty to criminal charges for falsifying data about the company’s defective air bags, which led to 16 deaths. The company will pay a $25 million fine, $125 million to people injured by the devices, and $850 million to the automakers who purchased them.  A federal jury in Detroit also indicted three Takata workers on charges of concealing defects in the airbag inflators. All three are Japanese citizens and are not in American custody.

Crude Deal

Noble Energy has agreed to buy Clayton Williams Energy in a deal worth $ 2.7 billion. The deal will give Noble a combined 120,000 acres of oil-rich property in West Texas and create the energy industry’s second largest Southern Delaware shale acreage position in the Permian Basin. In addition to the 2,400 new drilling locations Noble will also take over a significant number of pipelines in Texas that can carry fuel from oil fields near the New Mexico border to markets where refineries and oil storage tanks are located. As drilling in the Permian Basin heats up this year, pipeline space is expected to become more valuable. The Permian Basin is a giant oil rich section of West Texas and New Mexico that spans more than 75,000 square miles. Within the Permian Basin there are many layers of shale rock which have proven to contain vast deposits of crude oil.

Markets:

Asia: Asian markets closed mixed on Tuesday as investors remained cautious ahead of U.K prime ministers Brexit speech later today.

Europe: European markets closed lower as investors prepare for Tuesday speech from the U.K prime minister.

U.S: U.S. shares closed mostly on Friday as traders prepared for their holiday week and this week’s inauguration. DJIA: -5.27 19,885.73 NASDAQ:  +26.63 5,574.12 S&P: +4.20 2,274.64

Word of The Day:

Initial Public Offering (IPO)

The first time the stock of a private company is offered to the public.

Dinner or Drink:

Buttershot Slide

  • 3/4 part DeKuyper® Buttershots™ Schnapps
  • 3/4-part Coffee Liqueur
  • 3/4-part Irish Cream
  • 1 cup Hot Coffee
  • Whipped Cream

Fill mug with hot coffee and add ingredients. Garnish with whipped cream.

Jan 12

Highlights:

Trouble

A U.S. Federal grand jury indicted six current and former executives of Volkswagen for their alleged part in the company’s emission fraud. The executives named by the Justice Department held senior management roles within the company’s engine development, quality control, and regulatory compliance. All were charged with one count of conspiring to defraud the U.S, wire fraud, and violation of the Clean Air Act. Some of the six executives could face additional charges.  The indictments came as Volkswagen formally admitted to criminal wrongdoing and the company’s agreement to pay a $2.8 billion criminal fine and an additional $1.5 billion in civil penalties.

We Are Open

The New York Stock Exchange plans to allow trading of all U.S. stocks and exchange-traded funds on its historic trading floor. The move ends a restriction that limited floor trading to securities listed on NYSE or a smaller sister exchange. Under the plan, any of the roughly 8,600 stocks and ETFs trading the U.S. could be bought and sold on the NYSE floor, including those listed on rival exchanges like the NASDAQ or Bats Global Markets.  Most analyst see the plan as a reflection of the exchange operator’s insistence on retaining the floor in an era when U.S. stock markets have gone mostly electronic. However, some see the new plan as a response to the IEX Group, made famous by the book Flash Boys, full-fledged trading exchange that levels the playing field between ultrafast traders and traditional investors.  The move will mostly not make a difference to the vast majority of U.S. investors but could affect financial firms that handle large stock trades and pay close attention to whether those trades are being executed at the best price.

Markets:

Asia: Asian markets closed lower on Thursday after investors were disappointed in Trumps speech and its lack of policy details.

Europe: European shares ended lower on Wednesday as pharma stocks declined after Trump promised to go after them for prices.

U.S: U.S markets closed higher as investors felt giddy after President Elect Trump’s new conference. DJIA: +98.75 19,954.28 NASDAQ: +11.83 5,563.65 S&P: +6.42 2,275.32

Word of The Day:

January Effect

A rally in stock prices which occurs during the month of January. The rally is generally attributed to lower stock prices that typically occur in December when investors seek tax losses to offset capital gains.

Dinner or Drink:

New York Hot Chocolate

1 oz. Vandermint® chocolate mint liqueur
6 – 7 Oz hot, strong black coffee
1 tsp whipped cream
1 tsp shaved, dark chocolate

 

Brew a pot of strong black coffee. Add the coffee to a warmed coffee mug and add the Vandermint. Top with a dollop of whipped cream and top that with dark chocolate shavings. Serve.

Read more: New York Hot Chocolate recipe http://www.drinksmixer.com/drink10835.html#ixzz4VYJkbEDg

Jan 11

Highlights:

Beautiful Find...

Valeant Pharmaceuticals International has agreed to sell three of its skin-care brands to cosmetics giant L’Oréal for $1.3 billion. The move is part of Valeant Chief Executive Joseph Papa’s efforts to sharpen the company’s focus on its key franchises in skin drugs, stomach treatments, eye care, and consumer health. Valeant has been in financial straits since its stock collapsed in late 2015, when an accounting issue raised questions about the company’s earnings and spurred a crisis of confidence in management.

Cost Cutting

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. will cut close to 1000 corporate jobs this month. The cuts will focus on Wal-Mart’s U.S operations, including human-resources, technology and e-commerce divisions. The cuts are part of the retailer’s structural efforts to make the company more efficient and responsive to fast changing consumer behaviors. The world’s largest retail also cut back its workforce in September when it laid off 7,000 jobs in its stores.

Markets:

Asia:  Asian markets closed mostly positive as the world waits for president-elect Trump’s first press conference and what insight it will give into his economic policies.

Europe: European shares closed mixed after the banking sector took a hit as investors remain nervous.

U.S: U.S. markets closed mixed on Tuesday as oil prices declined. DJIA: -31.85 19,855.53 NASDAQ: +20.00 5,551.82 S&P: 0.00 2,268.90

Word of The Day:

Inflation

The rate which the general level of prices for goods, and services is rising while consumer purchasing power is falling.

Dinner or Drink:

American Beauty

1 oz. brandy
1/2 oz. dry vermouth
1/4 tsp white creme de menthe
1 oz. orange juice
1 tsp grenadine syrup
1/2 oz. tawny port

 

In a shaker half-filled with ice cubes, combine the brandy, vermouth, creme de menthe, orange juice, and grenadine. Shake well. Strain into a cocktail glass. Pouring slowly and carefully, float the port on top.

 

Jan 9

Highlights:

Store Closing

The once popular women’s clothing brand, The Limited, that offered casual attire and work wear officially closed all its physical stores on Saturday. The company announced the closing on its website with a message saying “We’re sad to say that all the Limited stores nationwide have officially closed their doors. But this isn’t goodbye.” The chain had around 250 stores nationwide and employed over 4,000 people, most of which have been let go. The stores website is still up and running and will continue to ship nationwide. Once known as major retailer selling a limited assortment of women’s clothing, the store fell on hard times in the last decade. The chain was spun off from Victoria Secret’s parent company, L Brands in 2007 in a leveraged buyout by Sun Capital.

New Arm

UnitedHealth Group ‘s Inc. Optum health-service arm had agreed to acquire Surgical Care Affiliates for around $2.3 billion, adding the major surgical company to Optum’s growing roster of doctor groups and clinics. The deal, a mixture of cash and stock, substantially expands the health-care provider footprint of UnitedHealth. The acquisition represents a continued bet on physician services as ObamaCare faces an uncertain future which could result in the potential drop-off in insured paying patients.

Markets:

Asia: Asian shares closed higher on Monday, following the Dow Jones coming within inches of the 20,000 mark during last Friday session. The Japan market was closed for public holiday.

Europe: European stocks closed lower on Friday after a lukewarm December jobs report.

U.S: U.S. markets closed higher on Friday as investors saw some positive news in the December jobs reports. DJIA: +64.51 19,963.80 NASDAQ: +33.12 5,521.06 S&P: +7.98 2,276.98

Word of The Day:

EBITDA

A measurement of a company’s operating profitability as a percentage of its total revenue using a formula of earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortization divided by total revenue.

Dinner or Drink:

Kentucky Mulled Cider

  • 1 1/4 parts Bourbon
  • Apple Cider, Hot
  • 1 dash Allspice
  • Garnish Cinnamon Stick
  • Garnish Lemon, Sliced

Add Bourbon to a footed mug. Fill mug with hot apple cider and the dash of allspice. Garnish with a tall cinnamon stick and lemon slice.

 

Jan 6

Highlights:

Now Hiring

The Department of Labor released its monthly jobs report on Friday. According to the report the overall economy added 156,000 jobs in December and the unemployment rate remains unchanged at 4.7%.

Tool Time

Sears Holding Corp has agreed to sell its Craftsman tool brand to Stanley Black & Decker for around $900 million. The move makes the third attempt to prop up the beleaguered retailer with sources of funding in the last two weeks. As Sears department-store business continues to bleed cash, Chief Executive Officer Edward Lampert, has turned to selling and spinning off assets to keep the company afloat. Sears is also contemplating the sale of its DieHard batteries and Kenmore appliance brands. Separately, Sears will also close 150 or more stores as part of a program to shrink the retailer’s physical presence. The company posted another grim sales report on Thursday with sales declining 12-13 percent during the holiday season.

Markets:

Asia: Asian markets closed mixed on Friday as Japanese automakers came under pressure after President-elect Donald Trump threatening to levy hefty taxes against Toyota.

Europe: European shares closed higher on Thursday after UK PMI showed a slight tick up in the manufacturing sector.

U.S: U.S. markets closed mostly lower on Thursday as investors digested Wednesday’s news of a not so bright Christmas for some retailers and Thursday slightly disappointing jobs report. DJIA: -42.87 19,899.29 NASDAQ: +10.93 5487.94 S&P: -1.75 2,269.00

Word of The Day:

Short Selling:

The sale of a security which is not owned by the seller, or that the seller has borrowed. Short selling is usually motivated by the speculative belief the security’s price will decline. This decline potentially enables the seller to buy the security back at a lower price and make a profit. The risk of losses on a short sale are endless therefore, it can be extremely risky.

Dinner or Drink:

Sweater Weather Swirl

  • 1 part Pinnacle® Cinnabon® Vodka
  • 2 parts Coffee
  • Cinnamon, Ground
  • Whipped Cream

Serve hot or cold in a mug. Garnish with whipped cream and cinnamon

Jan 5

Highlights:

How Many….

Private payroll giant, ADP, released its monthly job report on Thursday. According to the report the private sector added   153,000  jobs in December, below analyst estimates of 160,000.

Slash….

Big box retailer Macy’s announced Wednesday it will eliminate more than 10,000 jobs and plans to move forward with closing 68 stores after a disappointing holiday shopping season. The move comes as sales at established stores fell 2.1 percent in November and December compared to the same period last year. The decline was blamed on changing consumer behavior as more customers move from traditional brink and mortar stores to online. The company plans on closing 68 out of the 100 stores announced last year, by mid-2017. Macy’s also announced it will plans to restructure parts of its business and begin to sell some of its properties.

Steaming

Steaming service Hulu notched a major agreement with CBS to provide live streaming of the network as part of Hulu’s TV-channel service. The Santa Monica-based company plans to launch an over the top package of channels, including live streaming of NFL football, baseball, and NCAA championship series basketball games. Other live events televised live by CBS including the Grammys, will also be part of the package. The move will help Hulu compete against competitors like SlingTV and DirecTV.

Markets:

Asia: Asian shares closed lower on Thursday as a stronger yen weighted on the export stocks.

Europe: European markets closed on Wednesday despite better economic news out of the Eurozone.

U.S: U.S markets closed higher on Wednesday as investors digested the cautious tone of the Federal Reserve’s last meeting minutes. DJIA:  +60.40 19,942.16 NASDAQ: +47.92 5,477.00 S&P: +12.92 2,270.75

Word of The Day:

Credit Risk

The risk investors could lose their principal or financial reward when a borrower fails to repay a loan or otherwise meet a contractual obligation. Investors are compensated for assuming credit risk by higher interest payments from the borrower or issuer of a debt obligation.

Dinner or Drink:

Hot Velvet

  • 1 part Cruzan® Velvet Cinn™ Rum
  • 1 part Cruzan® Estate Diamond® Dark Rum
  • 2 parts Hot Chocolate
  • 1 pinch Chili Powder
  • 1 tiny pinch Salt
  • Cinnamon, Ground

Combine all ingredients in a sauce pot and whisk briskly until warm. (Alternate use: Use an espresso machine steam wand to bring to temp). Garnish with grated cinnamon.

 

 

Jan 3

Highlights:

New Toy

Cell phone giant Samsung unveiled its new line of phones marking the first time the company has launched a new product since its debacle with the ill-fated Galaxy Note 7. The new phones called the Galaxy A3, A5, and A7, differentiated by screen size, will be water and dust resistant. The phones will also offer a new 16-megapixel camera, which includes a selfie mode that lets you tap anywhere on the screen to take a photo. The new A series resembles the companies high-end Galaxy S line and features a fingerprint sensor, metal frame and 3D glass backing.  However, the new phones pack less processing power than the Galaxy S phones and max out at 32GB of internal storage,

More Information Needed….

In a regulatory filing on Friday, Cabela’s (CAB) reported the Federal Trade Commission has requested additional from both Cabela’s and Bass Pro Shop before it can move forward with its approval of the two-company’s marriage. The move could possibly cause a delay in the merger of the two companies.   The third participate in the merger Capital One Financial Corp, which is also buying Cabela’s credit card business has also been asked for additional information by its governing body the Office of the Comptroller. Cabela’s does not expect to gain approval before the October 3, 2017, the deadline for participants to walk away from the merger if they so desire. In a statement, Cabela’s is very hopeful the FTC will give their blessing and the two can live happily ever after starting sometime in 2017.

Markets:

Asia: Asian markets closed higher on Monday as a survey showed a pickup in China’s factory activity in December.

Europe: Europe ended the last trading session of the year in the green as traders did a little last minute shopping before the New Year’s holiday.

U.S: U.S. markets closed on Friday as investors took profits one last time in 2016. DJIA: -57.18 19,762.60 NASDAQ: -48.97 5,383.12 S&P: -10.43 2,238.83

Word of The Day:

Glide Path

A formula which defines the asset allocation mix of a target date fund. The glide path creates a more conservative asset allocation (more fixed income, less equities) as the fund gets closure to the target date aka your retirement date.

Dinner or Drink:

Blue Flurry

  • 1/2 part Vodka
  • 1/2 part Blue Curacao Liqueur
  • 3 parts Pineapple Juice
  • 1/2 part Cream Of Coconut
  • 4 parts Ice
  • Light Corn Syrup
  • Shredded Coconut

 

In a blender, blend ice, pineapple juice, blue curacao, vodka and cream of coconut until desired consistency is reached.

Rim the glasses: Pour a thin layer of corn syrup onto a plate and dip the rims into the corn syrup, then dip in coconut flakes.

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