Morning Market, Hedge Fund and Private Equity News

Apr 5 2017 | 9:07am ET

The Dow Jones industrial average projected a 50-point gain at 9 a.m. Wednesday morning. The Dow and S&P 500 are set for a higher open after Automatic Data Processing reported a larger-than-expected jump in March private sector payrolls.

Here's what you need to know on Apr. 5, 2017. 

Today’s Earnings Calendar and Stocks to Watch:

Companies reporting earnings today that will interest institutional investors include Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA). The New York Teachers Retirement System had a massive stake in the pharmacy benefits giant in the fourth quarter – totaling roughly $128 million.

In addition, look for reports from Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (BBBY) and Monsanto Co. (MON).

Shares of Panera Bread (PNRA) rallied more than 13% in premarket hours after JAB Holdings made a $7.5 billion bid for the casual dining giant. The deal is likely a big win for King Street Capital Management, which held 250,000 shares of PNRA stock in the fourth quarter, according to WhaleWisdom. JAB, meanwhile, has completed five big deals in the last six years as it continues to bolster its global coffee and breakfast brands.

Staples Inc. (SPLS) is exploring a sale to a private equity company after last year’s failed merger with Office Depot.  The failed deal led to the resignation of CEO Ron Sargent, which forced the firm to begin exploring options that include a sale. The Wall Street Journal reports that the office retailer is holding discussions with “a small number of possible private equity bidders.” The firm sold a majority stake of its European business to Cerberus Capital Management in December 2016 as part of a larger cost-cutting measure.

Retail problems extend well beyond Staples. Payless ShoeSource has filed for Chapter 11, the latest firm to fall in the increasingly more competitive ecommerce world driven by (AMZN). Last month, Moody’s put Payless on a list of “distressed” retailers. Other natmes included J. Crew and Claire’s. Meanwhile, Macy’s (M), JC Penney (JCP), and Ralph Lauren (RL) have all announced store closures and cost-cutting initatives to try to reverse the tide against them. The ongoing retail decline echoes a statement by Mudrick Capital founder Jason Mudrick, who sounded off on the decline of retail malls earlier this week.

Shares of Valeant Pharmaceuticals (VRX) are hovering just north of $10.20 per share in premarket hours. The company has received three final bids – all considered underwhelming – for its iNova operations. The bids comes from two private equity firms and one private equity consortium, according to The Australian.

Wednesday Morning Reading List

CNBC: Three Reports that Could Move the Markets Wednesday

Finalternatives: HFRX Global Hedge Fund Index Flat In March, Up + 1.66% YTD

PlanAdvisor: Court Finds Intel Alternative Investment Suit Time-Barred

Forbes: Decision Guru And Hedge Fund Billionaire Ray Dalio Is Crazy Like A Buddha

Bloomberg: Fed Leak Probe Dooms Lacker But Leaves Key Question: Who Leaked?

Check back for more hedge fund, private equity and market news throughout the day and be sure to read Wednesday's edition of The Daily Alpha. 

Check out yesterday's edition right here -- Real Talk on Donald Trump, Elon Musk and Bill Ackman.






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