Schaeffer's Trading Floor Blog

Buzz Stocks: Herbalife Ltd., Berkshire Hathaway Inc., Pfizer Inc., and J.C. Penney Company, Inc.

Today's stocks to watch in the news include HLF, BRK.A, PFE, and JCP

by 3/13/2014 9:03 AM
Stocks quoted in this article:

Futures are pointed modestly higher this morning, as investors begin to chew on the latest round of U.S. economic data. In company news, here are some stocks to watch today:

  • Activist investor Bill Ackman's repeated calls for an investigation into the legality of Herbalife Ltd.'s (NYSE:HLF) marketing practices have finally been answered. Yesterday afternoon, the nutritional supplements company announced that the Federal Trade Commission has launched a probe into its business. (MarketWatch)

  • Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.A) struck a cash-and-stock deal to acquire several assets -- including Miami-based TV station WPLG -- from Graham Holdings Co (NYSE:GHC). "I am sure this is a mutually beneficial transaction for both companies," said BRK.A chairman and CEO Warren Buffett. "While this transaction will greatly reduce our position in Graham Holdings, our admiration for the company and its management is undiminished." (USA Today)

  • A U.S. District Court ruled yesterday to invalidate Pfizer Inc.'s (NYSE:PFE) patent to extend the exclusivity of Celebrex, the pharmaceutical name's popular painkiller. In response, rival Mylan Inc (NASDAQ:MYL) announced this morning that it will likely begin selling a generic version of the drug this May. (The Wall Street Journal)

  • J.C. Penney Company, Inc. (NYSE:JCP) is re-launching its home goods section today, which former CEO Ron Johnson closed in an attempt to move the retailer in a more upscale direction. Company executives are hoping that an increased focus on affordable in-home products will help JCP compete with rivals such as Kohl's Corporation (NYSE:KSS) and Target Corporation (NYSE:TGT). (Reuters)

  • Also, Dollar General Corp. (NYSE:DG), Krispy Kreme Doughnuts (NYSE:KKD), and Williams-Sonoma, Inc. (NYSE:WSM) reported quarterly earnings. (MarketWatch; Bloomberg)

  • Finally, University of New South Wales mathematician Toby Walsh analyzed King Digital Entertainment Plc's blockbuster mobile game "Candy Crush Saga," and determined that it belongs in the "NP-Hard" class of mathematical problems -- which means discovering an optimal solution is extremely difficult. "It would be interesting to see if we can profit from the time humans spend solving 'Candy Crush' problems," Walsh said. "Perhaps we can put this to even better use by hiding some practical NP-Hard problems within these puzzles?" (AndroidHeadlines)

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