Buzz Stocks: Honeywell, PetSmart, and Sony Corp

Today's stocks to watch in the news include HON, PETM, and SNE

Dec 15, 2014 at 9:05 AM
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Following a brutal week, U.S. stocks are poised to rally, with futures pointed sharply higher ahead of the open. In company news, today's stocks to watch include diversified tech firm Honeywell International Inc. (NYSE:HON), pet products peddler PetSmart, Inc. (NASDAQ:PETM), and electronics specialist Sony Corp (ADR) (NYSE:SNE).

  • HON trimmed its sales projection for this year, and issued lackluster 2015 revenue guidance, citing modest economic growth. "While we're expecting only modest GDP growth in most regions around the world next year and will accordingly continue to be conservative in our cost and resource planning, our plan is to deliver higher organic growth," CEO Dave Cote said. Elsewhere, Honeywell International Inc. shares have advanced nearly 11% year-over-year to perch at $95.88, and touched a record high of $100.16 earlier this month. In the options pits, traders have been favoring bearish bets over bullish in recent months, relatively speaking. HON's 50-day put/call volume ratio on the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) checks in at 0.72, in the 86th percentile of its annual range.

  • PETM has reached a deal to be taken private for $8.2 billion, or $83 per share, by a group of investors led by private-equity firm BC Partners Inc. The agreement represents the biggest private-equity buyout in 2014, and has PetSmart, Inc. pointed nearly 5% higher ahead of the bell. Longer term, the shares have advanced almost 7% year-to-date at $77.67, and have consolidated in the $78 region since late November -- when reports of a PETM buyout deal first began to circulate. On the sentiment front, PETM's 10-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX put/call volume ratio of 4.27 ranks higher than 87% of similar readings taken in the last year.

  • Finally, SNE's movie studio, Sony Pictures Entertainment, has demanded that media companies stop publishing information leaked by the hackers who infiltrated its computer network in November. Specifically, a letter from Sony Corp's (ADR) attorney said the movie studio "does not consent to your possession, review, copying, dissemination, publication, uploading, downloading or making any use" of the data. While the company's shares have tacked on 17.6% year-to-date to trade at $20.33, they've shed 7.5% in December on the heels of the breach. Not surprisingly, option traders have been upping the bearish ante in recent weeks. SNE's 10-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX put/call volume ratio of 1.09 sits just 4 percentage points shy of a 12-month high.

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