Kodak enters cryptocurrency frenzy

Kodak jumps after announcing blockchain initiative and cryptocurrency

Kodak jumps after announcing blockchain initiative and cryptocurrency
Kodak jumps after announcing blockchain initiative and cryptocurrency

Shares of Kodak (KODK) surged after the company and WENN Digital, in a licensing partnership, announced the launch of the KODAKOne image rights management platform and KODAKCoin, a photo-centric cryptocurrency to “empower photographers and agencies to take greater control in image rights management.”

Kodak CEO Jeff Clarke said: “For many in the tech industry, ‘blockchain’ and ‘cryptocurrency’ are hot buzzwords, but for photographers who’ve long struggled to assert control over their work and how it’s used, these buzzwords are the keys to solving what felt like an unsolvable problem.

Kodak has always sought to democratize photography and make licensing fair to artists.

These technologies give the photography community an innovative and easy way to do just that.” The initial coin offering will open on January 31, 2018 and is open to accredited investors from the U.S., UK, Canada and other select countries.

Following the company’s announcement, Kodak shares are up $2.72, or 85%, to $5.85.


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Bulls vs Bears on Principal Financial

Wells Fargo cautious on Principal Financial as Goldman says buy

Bulls vs Bears on Principal Financial. Stockwinners.com
Bulls vs Bears on Principal Financial

 

This morning, Goldman Sachs analyst Alex Scott upgraded Principal Financial (PFG) to Buy on his view that the company has potentially positive earnings growth drivers and the stock has limited downside risk.

 

Meanwhile, his peer at Wells Fargo downgraded the stock to Market Perform, arguing that its current valuation already reflects the relative growth in earnings derived from the company’s niche of fee-based businesses, aided by healthy equity market performance.

 

BUY PRINCIPAL FINANCIAL

 

In a research note to investors this morning, Goldman Sachs‘ Scott upgraded Principal Financial to Buy from Neutral after his work suggested a number of potentially positive earnings growth drivers.

 

The analyst noted that he sees organic growth in the Spread and International segments, upside to estimates driven by margins, potential for inorganic growth through deploying excess capital, and a possibility that the pension partnership with the China Construction Bank will be finalized in 2018.

 

Nonetheless, Scott pointed out that he believes the company could experience some pricing pressure within the Specialty Benefits segment during the year, but the improved growth related to tax reform and scale positions the segment well. The analyst also raised his price target on the shares to $80 from $71.

 

MOVING TO THE SIDELINES

Conversely, Wells Fargo analyst Sean Dargan downgraded Principal Financial to Market Perform from Outperform, with a $79 price target, saying the stock’s valuation already reflects the relative growth in earnings.

 

While the analyst acknowledged that Principal’s earnings per share will benefit from tax reform, like all companies under his coverage, #Dargan noted that its push to show growth in spread earnings via pension risk transfer exposes the company to “greater longevity risk,” which deserves a lower multiple than “pure” spread earnings.

 

The analyst told investors that he now prefers Voya Financial (VOYA), pointing out that the company should look more like Principal over time after shedding its capital-intensive annuity business. Furthermore, Dargan argued that he sees more upside in Voya at current valuation levels.

 

Principal Financial (PFG) is  up 1% to $73.12.


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Apple to address child addiction concerns

Apple plans new features following concerns over child phone addiction

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Apple plans new features following concerns over child phone addiction

Apple is planning to launch new features and tools for its products after Jana Partners and the California State Teachers’ Retirement System, which hold a combined $2B stake in the tech giant, called on the company to address child phone addiction, Business Insider reports, citing an Apple representative.

The company said, “Apple has always looked out for kids, and we work hard to create powerful products that inspire, entertain, and educate children while also helping parents protect them online. We lead the industry by offering intuitive parental controls built right into the operating system…

We have new features and enhancements planned for the future, to add functionality and make these tools even more robust…We take this responsibility very seriously and we are committed to meeting and exceeding our customers’ expectations, especially when it comes to protecting kids.”

AAPL closed at $174.35.


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Alliance Data to launch credit cards for IKEA Group 

Alliance Data to launch co-brand, private label credit cards for IKEA Group 

Alliance Data to launch credit cards for IKEA. Stockwinners
Alliance Data to launch credit cards for IKEA

Alliance Data Systems  (ADS) announced its Columbus, Ohio-based card services business, a premier provider of branded private label, co-brand and business credit card programs, has signed a new agreement to provide branded credit card services in the United States for IKEA Group, the world’s largest furniture retailer.

The IKEA Group operates 47 stores in the U.S. and a total of 362 in 29 countries around the world.

IKEA aims to offer consumers home furnishing solutions of good design and function at affordable prices.

Alliance Data will create a loyalty-driven credit card program that combines customer insights and industry benchmarking to develop a customized rewards and benefits package tailored for the unique IKEA customer base.

The co-branded rewards card can be used for both IKEA purchases and for everyday spending needs such as gas, groceries and utilities. The card will incorporate custom program perks designed to recognize customers for their loyalty.

In order to make the card as affordable and rewarding as possible, IKEA Group in the U.S. has designed the card without an annual fee, and will reinvest resources from the card to offer customers more generous rewards.

Alliance Data will leverage its digital and mobile expertise throughout the customer’s shopping journey, including its Frictionless Mobile CreditSM, which provides a seamless application experience-throughout the store or online-and puts customers in control of how and where they want to initiate the experience.


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