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GOOG

Alphabet

$852.12

3.34 (0.39%)

, GOOGL

Alphabet Class A

$872.37

2.37 (0.27%)

15:24
03/20/17
03/20
15:24
03/20/17
15:24

U.K. ad controversy potentially 'big deal' for Google, analyst says

Shares of Alphabet (GOOG) dipped Monday after research firm Pivotal highlighted that the company's recent U.K. advertising controversy could go global, potentially creating a "big deal" for the Internet giant. BACKGROUND: On February 9, Britain's The Times published an investigative report alleging that "some of the world's biggest brands are unwittingly funding Islamic extremists, white supremacists and pornographers" through automated ad placements, particularly in YouTube content. As discussion on the topic grew, French ad agency Havas as well as the British government itself announced plans last week to pause their spending on Google's network. The U.K. Cabinet Office soon confirmed to regional publications that it summoned the company for "discussions," industry group ISBA urged Google to "immediately to review its policies and controls," News Corp (NWS) CEO Robert Thomson called on advertisers to "go back to basics," and McDonald's (MCD) UK and Sainsbury's (JSAIY) joined a growing list of British businesses temporarily halting their spending with Google. GOOGLE RESPONDS: Ronan Harris, managing director of Google U.K., stated in a company blog post Friday that "we can do a better job of addressing the small number of inappropriately monetized videos and content. We've begun a thorough review of our ads policies and brand controls, and we will be making changes in the coming weeks to give brands more control over where their ads appear." Google EMEA boss Matt Brittin built on those comments Monday, using an appearance at this week's Advertising Week Europe 2017 to issue a formal apology to "partners and advertisers who might have been affected by their ads appearing on controversial content," according to media reports of the event. PIVOTAL SEES BRAND RISK: Pivotal Research's Brian Wieser downgraded Google to Hold while dropping his price target to $950 from $970 on Monday, arguing that the Internet titan's advertising blunder could "marginally curtail" growth this year. While conceding that the spending-pause announcements so far represent a "relatively small" subset, the analyst says mushrooming worries surrounding the problem are a "big deal" for Google, as companies wary of even a single mis-branding incident could balk at what he calls an insufficient response from Google. The analyst also notes that Google already faces a "hostile industry" of European media owners who will be "all too happy" to stoke concerns against the latest ad technologies. Arguing that "the problems which have come to light will have global repercussions as U.K. marketers potentially adapt their U.K. policies to other markets and as marketers around the world become more aware of the problem," Wieser believes Google will need to respond with something like a zero tolerance policy to calm the waters. PRICE ACTION: Class A shares of Alphabet are down 0.5% to $868 in afternoon trading.

GOOG

Alphabet

$852.12

3.34 (0.39%)

GOOGL

Alphabet Class A

$872.37

2.37 (0.27%)

NWS

News Corp

$12.95

0.05 (0.39%)

NWSA

News Corp.

$12.65

0.01 (0.08%)

MCD

McDonald's

$128.59

-0.05 (-0.04%)

JSAIY

J Sainsbury

$13.60

0.115 (0.85%)

  • 20

    Mar

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    Mar

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    May

  • 22

    May

GOOG Alphabet
$852.12

3.34 (0.39%)

03/14/17
DADA
03/14/17
NO CHANGE
Target $51
DADA
Neutral
Tableau price target lowered to $51 from $55 at DA Davidson
DA Davidson analyst Jack Andrews said several data points in recent weeks lead him to believe that the total addressable market opportunity for Tableau (DATA) is being contested and/or eroded by more "heavyweight" enterprise software companies, including Google (GOOG), Microsoft (MSFT) and Workday (WDAY). Citing the continued rise of competition, Andrews reiterates a Neutral rating on Tableau and lowered his price target to $51 from $55.
03/17/17
PACS
03/17/17
NO CHANGE
PACS
Growth of Amazon.com cloud business could moderate, says Pacific Crest
Pacific Crest analyst Brent Bracelin says that heavy investments by Microsoft (MSFT) and Google (GOOG, GOOGL) could make their cloud businesses more competitive with Amazon's (AMZN) AWS. The analyst says that AWS' growth could decelerate this year and in 2018. He lowered his estimates for Amazon and cut his price target on the name to $895 from $905 but keeps an Overweight rating on the shares.
03/20/17
PIVT
03/20/17
DOWNGRADE
Target $950
PIVT
Hold
Pivotal downgrades Alphabet to Neutral on brand safety concerns
Pivotal Research analyst Brian Wieser downgraded Alphabet (GOOGL) to Hold from Buy citing brand safety concerns and valuation following the recent rally in the shares. News last week that Havas, the sixth largest global media network, is pulling its spending from Google's YouTube and Google Display Network in the U.K. because Google was "unable to provide specific reassurances, policy and guarantees that their video or display content is classified either quickly enough or with the correct filters" is a big deal, Wieser tells investors in a research note. Many of the U.K.'s largest brands working with agencies are reportedly suspending their advertising on YouTube and/or other Google ad products due to similar concerns, Wieser points out. He sees the U.K. issues impacting Google's global growth and cut his price target for Alphabet shares to $950 from $970. The stock in premarket trading is down $2.58 to $869.79.
03/20/17
03/20/17
DOWNGRADE

On The Fly: Top five analyst downgrades
Catch up on today's top five analyst downgrades with this list compiled by The Fly: 1. Pivotal Research analyst Brian Wieser downgraded Alphabet (GOOGL) to Hold from Buy citing brand safety concerns and valuation following the recent rally in the shares. News last week that Havas, the sixth largest global media network, is pulling its spending from Google's YouTube and Google Display Network in the U.K. because Google was "unable to provide specific reassurances, policy and guarantees that their video or display content is classified either quickly enough or with the correct filters" is a big deal, Wieser tells investors. 2. Canaccord analyst Lynne Collier downgraded Sonic (SONC) to Hold from Buy, citing challenging industry sales, the potential for Street estimates to be too high in the midst of soft sales, a lack of upcoming catalysts, and increasing competition from non-traditional venues such as convenience stores. 3. Piper Jaffray analyst Alexander Potter downgraded Mobileye (MBLY) to Neutral saying that while demanding a higher buyout price may be justified, he "begrudgingly" concluded that the price Intel (INTC) is paying for the company is fair. The analyst raised his price target for Mobileye shares to $63.54 from $60 to reflect Intel's offer. 4. Susquehanna analyst Sam Poser downgraded Caleres (CAL) citing the company's "disappointing" results and his belief that the company will not be able to overcome industry headwinds. 5. Goldman Sachs analyst Conor Fitzgerald downgraded Stifel Financial (SF) to Neutral from Buy while raising his price target for the shares to $59 from $58. The analyst believes LPL Financial (LPLA), a stock he upgraded this morning to Conviction Buy, offers more upside at current valuations. This list is just a portion of The Fly's full analyst coverage. To see The Fly's full Street Research coverage, click here.
GOOGL Alphabet Class A
$872.37

2.37 (0.27%)

03/20/17
PIVT
03/20/17
DOWNGRADE
PIVT
Hold
Alphabet downgraded to Hold from Buy at Pivotal Research
NWS News Corp
$12.95

0.05 (0.39%)

10/27/16
10/27/16
DOWNGRADE

On The Fly: Top five analyst downgrades
Catch up on today's top five analyst downgrades with this list compiled by The Fly: 1. Apple (AAPL) downgraded to Long-Term Buy from Buy at Hilliard Lyons. 2. News Corp (NWS) downgraded to Underperform from Neutral at BofA/Merrill with analyst Jessica Reif Cohen saying shares have rallied over the last 3 months and are now within 7% of her $14 price target and the company continues to face significant secular challenges in its News and Information Services segment. 3. Owens Corning (OC) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at CL King. 4. Pearson (PSO) downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight at Morgan Stanley. 5. Allegiant Travel (ALGT) downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at Raymond James with analyst Savanthi Syth saying Allegiant's TRASM recovery is likely to take longer than expected while cost pressures during the transition to a single fleet type are likely to increase. This list is just a portion of The Fly's full analyst coverage. To see The Fly's full Street Research coverage, click here.
10/27/16
10/27/16
DOWNGRADE
Target $14

Underperform
News Corp downgraded to Underperform from Neutral at BofA/Merrill
As previously reported, BofA/Merrill downgraded News Corp to Underperform from Neutral. Analyst Jessica Reif Cohen said shares have rallied over the last 3 months and are now within 7% of her $14 price target and the company continues to face significant secular challenges in its News and Information Services segment.
10/27/16
BOFA
10/27/16
DOWNGRADE
BOFA
Underperform
News Corp downgraded to Underperform from Neutral at BofA/Merrill
07/14/16
ADAM
07/14/16
NO CHANGE
Target $40
ADAM
Buy
Zillow price target raised to $40 from $34 at Canaccord
Canaccord raised its price target on Zillow (ZG) to $40 from $34 as the company continues to execute well with its integration of its Trulia acquisition and creating value for its customers. The firm also noted the settlement of its News Corp. (NWSA) litigation and expects future margin expansion. Canaccord reiterated its Buy rating on Zillow shares.
NWSA News Corp.
$12.65

0.01 (0.08%)

11/08/16
LYON
11/08/16
DOWNGRADE
LYON
Outperform
News Corp. downgraded earlier to Outperform from Buy at CLSA
CLSA analyst Sacha Krien downgraded News Corp to Outperform saying print advertising declines remain a concern.
05/09/16
LYON
05/09/16
DOWNGRADE
LYON
Outperform
News Corp. downgraded to Outperform from Buy at CLSA
06/07/16
LEHM
06/07/16
UPGRADE
Target $32
LEHM
Equal Weight
Zillow upgraded to Equal Weight from Underweight at Barclays
Barclays analyst Christopher Merwin upgraded Zillow (ZG) to Equal Weight after the company settled its lawsuit with News Corp.'s (NWSA) Move for $130M. The sum is "surprisingly small" since Move was originally seeking $2B in damages, Merwin tells investors in a research note. The analyst views the outcome as "highly favorable" for Zillow and raised his price target for the shares to $32 from $20. In addition to the legal settlement, Merwin believes Zillow's fundamentals are improving. The online real estate platform closed yesterday up $1.04 to $30.78.
06/07/16
ADAM
06/07/16
NO CHANGE
Target $34
ADAM
Buy
Zillow settlement with News Corp. better than feared, says Canaccord
Canaccord said Zillow's (Z) settlement with News Corp. (NWSA) was better than their worst fears. The firm said the settlement amount was well below what News Corp. was seeking, but nearly 2.5 times what management had expensed. The firm, which believes the settlement points to a more rational competitive environment, reiterated its Buy rating and $34 price target on Zillow shares.
MCD McDonald's
$128.59

-0.05 (-0.04%)

03/02/17
FBCO
03/02/17
NO CHANGE
Target $137
FBCO
Outperform
McDonald's price target raised to $137 from $130 at Credit Suisse
Credit Suisse analyst Jason West raised his price target for McDonald's to $137 from $130 following the company's annual investor day. The analyst noted that updated long-term guidance came in generally better than expected. He reiterates an Outperform rating on the shares.
02/27/17
NOMU
02/27/17
NO CHANGE
Target $136
NOMU
Buy
Nomura continues to recommend McDonald's
Nomura analyst Mark Kalinowski said McDonald's is hosing its biennial analyst meeting on March 1, earlier than the usual autumn meeting, as it wants to showcase some of the new menu products and platforms coming out. He expects the Signature Crafted semi-customization platform may be introduced nationwide in the U.S. during the middle of 2017 and expects to hear how McDonald's plans to win back traffic into its stores, particularly in the U.S. Kalinowski continues to encourage investors buy McDonald's ahead of what he expects to be a return to positive U.S. same-store-sales in Q2 and reiterates his Buy rating and $136 price target.
01/18/17
NOMU
01/18/17
NO CHANGE
Target $136
NOMU
Buy
McDonald's sales comp forecasts lowered at Nomura
Nomura analyst Mark Kalinowski lowered Q4 and Q1 US comp estimates for McDonald's following recent a recent franchisee survey. The analyst lowered hisQ4 US same-store sales forecast by 70bp, to -1.2%, versus consensus of down 1.4%, blaming an adverse December, mainly blaming the weather. In addition, he lowered Q1 US same-store sales forecasts by 240bp, to down 1.9%, versus consensus of down .6%. Based on these changes, and also currencies that continue to move against McDonald's, Kalinowski lowered his full-year 2016 and full-year 2017 earnings estimates by 2c 4c, respectively, to $5.71 and $6.19. Based on the lower base of anticipated earnings coming off of 2017, he also reduced our full-year 2018 earnings forecast by 4c, to $6.79. The analyst retains his Buy rating on McDonald's and lowered its price target to $136 from $137 and said he does not view winter weather as an especially worrisome issue from a 12-month outlook perspective.
01/24/17
RHCO
01/24/17
NO CHANGE
RHCO
McDonald's 'turnaround' still 'intact,' says SunTrust
SunTrust analyst Jake Bartlett says that McDonald's lost market share in Q4, but he thinks that the fast food giant's "turnaround" remains "intact." He predicts that the company will gain market share in Q4 and over the longer term. Bartlett trimmed his price target on the stock to $137 from $140 but keeps a Buy rating on the shares.
JSAIY J Sainsbury
$13.60

0.115 (0.85%)

04/07/16
FBCO
04/07/16
UPGRADE
FBCO
Outperform
J Sainsbury upgraded to Outperform from Underperform at Credit Suisse
04/22/16
DBAB
04/22/16
UPGRADE
DBAB
Buy
J Sainsbury upgraded to Buy from Hold at Deutsche Bank

TODAY'S FREE FLY STORIES

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FINL

Finish Line

$16.06

0.65 (4.22%)

20:25
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AYX

Alteryx

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Alteryx 9M share IPO priced at $14.00 »

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Trump demands healthcare vote Friday, prepared to 'move on,' Politico says »

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HDSN

Hudson Technologies

$6.62

0.37 (5.92%)

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GOOG

Alphabet

$817.58

-12.01 (-1.45%)

, GOOGL

Alphabet Class A

$839.65

-10.15 (-1.19%)

19:57
03/23/17
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Periodicals
YouTube still displaying ads alongside extremist content, Bloomberg says »

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GOOG

Alphabet

$817.58

-12.01 (-1.45%)

GOOGL

Alphabet Class A

$839.65

-10.15 (-1.19%)

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HBAN

Huntington Bancshares

$13.02

0.24 (1.88%)

19:38
03/23/17
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Initiation
Huntington Bancshares initiated at DA Davidson »

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FFBC

First Financial Bancorp

19:37
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First Financial Bancorp initiated at DA Davidson »

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PEBO

Peoples Bancorp

$31.20

0.32 (1.04%)

19:37
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Initiation
Peoples Bancorp initiated at DA Davidson »

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KEY

KeyCorp

$17.25

0.1 (0.58%)

19:37
03/23/17
03/23
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Initiation
KeyCorp initiated at DA Davidson »

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E

Eni SpA

$32.37

0.27 (0.84%)

19:15
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Hot Stocks
Eni says successfully drills offshore Mexico well »

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PGH

Pengrowth Energy

19:12
03/23/17
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Hot Stocks
Pengrowth to sell Montney Lands at Bernadet for $92M »

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ARES

Ares Management

$18.35

-0.1 (-0.54%)

19:11
03/23/17
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19:11
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19:11
Upgrade
Ares Management rating change at Keefe Bruyette »

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KHC

Kraft Heinz

$92.01

-0.28 (-0.30%)

19:06
03/23/17
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19:06
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19:06
Periodicals
Kraft Heinz lays off about 200 white collar workers, Crain's Chicago reports »

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CHMI

Cherry Hill Mortgage

$16.93

-1.49 (-8.09%)

19:06
03/23/17
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19:06
Syndicate
Cherry Hill Mortgage 4.5M share Secondary priced at $16.50 »

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  • 24

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BSM

Black Stone Minerals

$16.51

-0.39 (-2.31%)

19:01
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Upgrade
Black Stone Minerals rating change at Stifel »

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CMCSA

Comcast

$37.22

0.18 (0.49%)

, CMCSK

Comcast

19:01
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Periodicals
Comcast secures rights to offer nationwide TV service, Bloomberg says »

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CMCSA

Comcast

$37.22

0.18 (0.49%)

CMCSK

Comcast

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BLCM

Bellicum Pharmaceuticals

$12.90

-1.47 (-10.23%)

19:00
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Syndicate
Bellicum Pharmaceuticals 5M share Secondary priced at $12.00 »

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MET

MetLife

$52.05

0.28 (0.54%)

18:52
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Hot Stocks
MetLife director acquires 17,205 common shares »

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  • 13

    Jun

LYV

Live Nation

$29.30

0.55 (1.91%)

18:51
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Periodicals
Live Nation shutters Vice Media joint venture, NY Post says »

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T

AT&T

, CHTR

Charter

$323.62

2.42 (0.75%)

18:46
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Hot Stocks
DOJ settles civil claim against AT&T over information sharing in carriage talks »

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T

AT&T

CHTR

Charter

$323.62

2.42 (0.75%)

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  • 09

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General news
Breaking General news story  »

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LNVGY

Lenovo

$12.62

0.08 (0.64%)

, INTC

Intel

$35.27

-0.1 (-0.28%)

18:39
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18:39
Hot Stocks
Lenovo taps former Intel CIO as general manager of DCI segment »

Lenovo (LNVGY) announced…

LNVGY

Lenovo

$12.62

0.08 (0.64%)

INTC

Intel

$35.27

-0.1 (-0.28%)

03/08/13
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ERN

Erin Energy

18:35
03/23/17
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18:35
Hot Stocks
Erin Energy announces going concern audit opinion »

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CVX

Chevron

$107.87

-0.52 (-0.48%)

18:25
03/23/17
03/23
18:25
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18:25
Conference/Events
Economic Club of Washington, D.C. holds a dinner meeting »

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  • 23

    Mar

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