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STOCK MARKET NEWS: Disney-DeSantis spat deepens, $4 gas price warning, McDonald’s layoffs, Artemis

Disney’s Iger calls DeSantis ‘anti-business,’ analyst warns of $4 gas following OPEC decision, McDonald’s preps for layoffs, and NASA names Artemis crew. FOX Business is providing real-time updates on the markets, commodities, and all the most active stocks on the move.


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Disney CEO Iger calls DeSantis retaliation 'anti-business'


Walt Disney Co Chief Executive Bob Iger fired back at Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis on Monday, saying his apparent retaliation against Disney for taking a position on legislation was "anti-business."

After initially trying to stay neutral, Disney opposed Florida's Parental Rights in Education Act — referred to by opponents as the "Don't Say Gay" bill — that restricts classroom discussion of sexual orientation and gender identity.

Soon after, DeSantis and the Florida legislature moved to eliminate the virtual autonomy the company enjoyed over a 24,000-acre (9,712-hectares) parcel surrounding the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando.

Iger, answering a question at the company's annual shareholder meeting, said Disney may not have handled its position on the bill well, but added that corporations have a right to express opinions. He said it appeared DeSantis "decided to retaliate against us."

"To seek to punish a company for the exercise of a constitutional right, that just seems really wrong to me," Iger said.

Posted by Reuters

Toyota quarterly auto sales fall 8.8%


Toyota Motor Corp reported a drop in quarterly U.S. auto sales on Monday, as it struggled to get enough cars and trucks to dealers due to inflationary pressures and chip shortages.

"We continue to make improvements to our vehicle inventory to satisfy customer demand, while doing all we can to exceed expectations as we introduce more electrified vehicles throughout the balance of 2023," said Jack Hollis, executive vice president of sales, Toyota Motors North America.

The Japanese automaker said first-quarter sales fell 8.8% to 469,558 vehicles, compared with 514,592 vehicles a year earlier.

Posted by Reuters

GM quarterly auto sales rise 17.6%


General Motors Co on Monday reported a 17.6% rise in its first-quarter U.S. auto sales as pent-up demand for personal transport continued to outpace supply.

"We gained significant market share in the first quarter, pricing was strong, inventories are in very good shape," said Steve Carlisle, GM Executive Vice President and President, North America.

GM said first-quarter sales rose to 603,208 vehicles from 512,846 vehicles a year earlier.

Posted by Reuters

Boxed trading suspended by NYSE after ecommerce retailer files for bankrutpcy

Boxed Inc.

BOXD$0.19 -0.03-15.27

The New York Stock Exchange is commencing proceedings to delist the common stock of Boxed, Inc. — ticker symbol BOXD — from the NYSE. Trading in the company’s common stock will be suspended immediately.

The online and mobile membership-free wholesale retailer fled for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware.

Posted by FOX Business
Breaking News

Stocks kick off April mixed as energy lifts S&P 500, Tesla drags on Nasdaq

S P 500.

Investors began the month of April with a surprise production cut from OPEC which juiced S&P 500 energy stocks to the tune of 4% after crude climbed 6% to $80.42 per barrel, the biggest percentage gain since April 2022.


Laggards included consumer discretionary companies and Tesla which fell 6%.

Posted by FOX Business

$4 gas could return after OPEC Price cuts

OPEC, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, has announced a production cut of 1.15 million barrels per day.

The association of countries, which acts as an economic cartel, reduces and/or increases the output of oil in order to maximize profits of oil exporting countries, often at the expense of oil consuming countries such as the US and Europe.

On the news of the OPEC production cuts, the average US gas price soared to $3.50 Monday, according to AAA. It could rise another 26 cents this summer because of the cuts and 10 to 15 cents naturally because of the busy summer driving season.

Posted by FOX Business

February home prices see first monthly rise after seven straight declines

Home prices rose in February for the first time in eight months, according to software, data and analytics company Black Knight.

Prices rose at a seasonally adjusted rate of 0.16%, with 78% of the 50 largest U.S. markets showing gains.

“While some price increases – most notably in Miami, which saw the largest of the month – can be chalked up to people moving to the area, we're seeing stronger price gains more generally in those areas with better affordability and larger inventory deficits,” said Andy Walden, Black Knight Vice President of Enterprise Research.

“Still, the backward-looking national annual home price growth rate continued its descent, falling to 1.94%,” Walden said, adding February was the first time Black Knight has seen home price declines under 2% since 2012. 

Posted by FOX Business

FTC orders Illumina to divest GRAIL to promote competition in cancer detection industry


The Federal Trade Commission has issued an Opinion and Order forcing Illumina, Inc. to divest GRAIL, Inc. a maker of multi-cancer early detection (MCED) test.

GRAIL "is one of several competitors racing to develop and commercialize these life-saving liquid biopsy tests." according to the FTC, which believes the $7.1 billion acquisition of GRAIL by Illumina would stifle competition and innovation in the U.S. market for the life-saving cancer tests.

Because Illumina is the sole supplier of a critical input for both GRAIL and its competitors: NGS platforms necessary for MCED tests, the FTC worries Illumina could "easily foreclose GRAIL’s competitors by raising their costs or withholding or degrading access to supply, service, or new technologies".

The Commission voted 4-0 to issue the Order. The vote included Commissioner Christine S. Wilson who resigned from the FTC March 31, 2023 over complaints about Chair Lina Khan's agenda.

Posted by FOX Business

US sues Activision Blizzard over salary limits in esports leagues


The U.S. Justice Department filed an antitrust complaint against Activision Blizzard on Monday over salary limits in professional esports leagues.

The department said in a court filing that Activision Blizzard, which owns leagues built around its Overwatch and Call of Duty games, and the independently owned teams imposed a tax that "effectively operated as a salary cap, penalized teams for paying esports players above a certain threshold and limited player compensation in these leagues."

Posted by Reuters

NASA names astronauts to next Moon mission, first crew under Artemis

NASA and the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) announced the four astronauts who will venture around the Moon on Artemis II, the first crewed mission on NASA’s path to establishing a long-term presence at the Moon for science and exploration through Artemis.

The crew assignments are as follows: Commander Reid Wiseman, Pilot Victor Glover, Mission Specialist 1 Christina Hammock Koch, and Mission Specialist 2 Jeremy Hansen. They will work as a team to execute an ambitious set of demonstrations during the flight test.

The flight, set to build upon the successful uncrewed Artemis I mission completed in December , will set the stage for the first woman and first person of color on the Moon through the Artemis program, paving the way for future for long-term human exploration missions to the Moon, and eventually Mars.

Posted by FOX Business

Energy stocks surge on OPEC oil cut

Energy shares are up across the board on Monday following OPEC’s decision to cut oil production.

Oil producers like Marathon Oil, Chevron, Exxon Mobile and Hess are all well into the green as Warren Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway favorite Occidental Petroleum also rises into positive territory.

CVX$169.74 6.584.03

Meanwhile, the price of oil is up on Monday, rising to near $80.41 a barrel. 

Posted by FOX Business

Burger chain McDonald's to lay off hundreds of corporate employees: source


The number of corporate employees McDonald's Corp plans to lay off this week will tally in the "hundreds," a source familiar with the burger chain's thinking said on Monday, as the company moves forward with a previously announced restructuring.

The fast-food company is closing its offices "out of respect," and to "provide dignity, confidentiality, and comfort to our colleagues," said the source, who was not authorized to speak to the media.

McDonald's will have more employees going into new roles this week or receiving promotions then being laid off, the source added.

The layoffs do not include the more than 2 million worker in franchised McDonald's restaurants around the world.

Chicago-based McDonald's did not immediately return a request for comment.

Posted by FOX Business

Extra Space to buy Life Storage for $12.4B in self-storage mega deal

Life Storage Inc.


Real estate investment trust Extra Space Storage said on Monday it will acquire Life Storage for $12.4 billion in a deal that will result in the combined company becoming the largest U.S. self-storage space operator by store count.

The all-stock deal will offer the companies a "transformative scale" and cut costs, at a time when demand for storage space has waned from the heights of the pandemic, as people return to offices, and some analysts expect more consolidation in the sector.

Life Storage, which operates more than 1,150 storage facilities in 37 states and the District of Columbia, in February turned down a $11 billion all-stock takeover bid from Public Storage.

Posted by Reuters

US Army awards Lockheed up to $4.5B missiles contract


Lockheed Martin Corp said on Monday the U.S. Army has awarded a multi-year production contract for Joint-Air-to-Ground Missiles (JAGM) and HELLFIRE missiles, in a deal that could go up to $4.5 billion including follow-on awards.

The contract, which will have a total value of $439 million in its first year, is among the first multi-year awards for precision munitions, as the Pentagon looks to build stocks in the hopes of deterring China. 

In March, President Joe Biden requested $842 billion for the Pentagon and $44 billion for defense-related programs at the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Department of Energy and other agencies. The 2024 budget proposal is $28 billion more than last year's $858 billion.

Lockheed added the contract also offers three additional follow-on awards which will start in late 2023, allowing for a total contract value of up to $4.5 billion over the next four years.

Posted by Reuters

Revlon cleared to exit bankruptcy with $2.7B debt reduction deal


A U.S. judge on Monday approved Revlon Inc's reorganization plan, allowing the cosmetics giant to cut $2.7 billion from its debt and exit bankruptcy later this month.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge David Jones in Manhattan, who has been overseeing the company's Chapter 11 bankruptcy, said Revlon had reached "a hard-fought multi-faceted settlement" that resolves a "series of enterprise-threatening" risks to the business, including "debilitating" litigation among its lenders.

Under the plan, Revlon's lenders will take ownership of the company in exchange for the debt reduction agreement, wiping out the equity value of existing shareholders. The reorganized company plans to raise $670 million after exiting from bankruptcy by selling new equity shares.

Posted by Reuters

Ryder to add GM's BrightDrop’s electric vehicles to lease and rental fleet


Logistics and transportation company Ryder System Inc said on Monday it plans to add 4,000 electric vans to its lease and rental fleet through 2025, with some vehicles to be available as early as this summer.

The electric vans will comprise General Motor Co's BrightDrop Zevo 600 and Zevo 400 vans. The company said the first 200 vehicles will be ordered this year.

The move comes as the trucking industry is expected to face tougher greenhouse emissions regulations this year.

Ryder plans to deploy model year 2023 Zevo 600 electric vans in its rental fleet in California, Dallas-Fort Worth, and New York City later this year.

Posted by Reuters

Macy’s shares pop on upgrade

Shares of Macy’s are up on Monday after J.P. Morgan analyst Matthew Boss raised his rating for the stock to Overweight from Neutral and increased his target for the price to $29 from $28.


The retail chain easily beat Wall Street predictions in its last quarterly report when net sales reached $8.3 billion.

Up from just 6% in August of 2021, a third of analysts now rate the stock at Buy, according to FactSet.

Posted by FOX Business

Oil surges as OPEC+ surprise output target cuts shake markets

Oil prices jumped by $5 on Monday for the biggest daily rise in nearly a year after a OPEC+ jolted markets with plans to cut more production.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies including Russia shook markets with Sunday's announcement that it is cutting its production target by a further 1.16 million barrels per day (bpd).

The group, known collectively as OPEC+, had been expected at its monthly meeting on Monday to stick with its previous decision to target output cuts of 2 million bpd until December.

The latest pledges bring the total volume of cuts by OPEC+ to 3.66 million bpd, according to Reuters calculations, equating to 3.7% of global demand.

Posted by Reuters

EV maker Rivian beats quarterly delivery estimates


Electric-vehicle maker Rivian Automotive Inc on Monday beat estimates for first-quarter deliveries, helped by steady demand.

The company said it delivered 7,946 vehicles in the quarter ended March, compared with Visible Alpha estimates of 7,090 vehicles. It delivered 8,054 vehicles in the fourth quarter.

However, Amazon-backed Rivian's production of 9,395 vehicles at its facility in Normal, Illinois in the reported quarter fell short of estimates due to supply-chain disruptions.

Posted by Reuters

US manufacturing sector weakest in nearly three years in March: ISM

U.S. manufacturing activity slumped to the lowest level in nearly three years in March as new orders continued to contract, and activity could decline further amid tightening credit conditions.

The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) said on Monday that its manufacturing PMI fell to 46.3 last month, the lowest reading since May 2020, from 47.7 in February. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast the index dipping to 47.5.

It was the fifth straight month that the PMI remained below the 50 threshold, which indicates contraction in manufacturing. But so-called hard data have suggested that manufacturing, which accounts for 11.3% of the economy, continues to grow moderately.

Manufacturing expanded at a 4.5% annualized rate in the fourth quarter, the government reported last week. Reports last month also showed orders for capital goods excluding aircraft eking out a small gain in February as did manufacturing output.

Posted by Reuters

Tesla sales rise 36% in first quarter, following price cuts


Tesla's first-quarter vehicle sales rose 36% after the company cut prices twice in a bid to stimulate demand.

The electric car, SUV and heavy truck maker said it delivered 422,875 vehicles worldwide from January to March, up from just over 310,000 a year ago. But the increase fell short of analyst estimates of 432,000 for the quarter, according to FactSet.

Tesla cut prices in early March on its more expensive models, the S and X, by $5,000 to as much as $10,000. In January it slashed the sticker numbers on several versions of its EVs, making some eligible for a U.S. $7,500 federal tax credit.

The price cuts appeared to have raised demand despite increasing interest rates designed to slow the economy and curb inflation.

Posted by Associated Press

Western Digital reports network security incident


Data storage devices maker Western Digital Corp on Monday said it is looking into a network security incident, after a breach in some systems disrupted parts of its business operations.

The unauthorized party obtained certain data from its systems, and Western Digital is working to understand the nature and scope of that data, the company said in a statement.

The company said the incident may cause further disruption to its business operations, and is implementing measures to secure the operations, including taking systems and services offline.

The company also said it is working with law enforcement authorities, following its own investigation with outside security and forensic experts.

Posted by Reuters
Developing Story

Stock averages unsteady, oil booms on OPEC’s oil cut

The major U.S. benchmarks are shaky on Monday as oil prices skyrocket on OPEC decision.

Meanwhile, shares of Tesla are down after missing delivery predictions, despite breaking personal record, as shares of both Endeavor Group Holdings and World Wrestling Entertainment slide after announcing $21 billion partnership to create a new company.


In commodities, the price of oil is up big, hovering near $79.97 a barrel as gold moves up around $1,995.00 per ounce.

Posted by FOX Business

Starbucks fires union organizer


Starbucks has fired Lexi Rizzo, who ignited the Starbucks Workers United movement, according to a tweet by Starbucks Workers United.

A GoFundMe page for Rizzo states she was a seven-year shift supervisor at the Genesee Street store in Buffalo, New York.

The site was one of the first two stores in the country to win their union campaign.

Rizzo was fired two days after former CEO Howard Schultz testified in front of Congress about labor policies at the coffee chain.

Posted by FOX Business

Regal UK parent Cineworld drops major sale plan, proposes new debt deal


Cineworld has scrapped plans to sell its U.S., UK and Ireland businesses after failing to find a buyer, the cinema chain operator said on Monday , as it proposed a new debt restructuring plan.

Under a new tentative deal with lenders it said it aimed to reduce debt by about $4.53 billion, mainly through creditors getting equity in a reorganized group.

“Keeping the US and UK operations and only potentially selling its Eastern European and Israeli sites will streamline the group and put it in a better position to ride the recovery in the cinema industry – if it comes," said Danni Hewson, head of financial analysis at AJ Bell. “That’s a big ‘if’ as competition from streaming platforms has become intense and film-lovers are increasingly happy to watch new releases at home."

Reuters contributed to this report.

Posted by FOX Business

UBS, Credit Suisse drop after Swiss prosecutor probes takeover deal


Credit Suisse and UBS shares fell on Monday after Switzerland's Federal Prosecutor opened an investigation into the emergency merger of the two lenders.

The office of the attorney general said on Sunday that the prosecutor opened an investigation into the state-backed takeover of Credit Suisse  by UBS Group last month, looking into potential breaches of the country's criminal law by government officials, regulators and executives at the two banks.

The banks declined to comment on the investigation.

Posted by Reuters
Breaking News

World Wrestling Entertainment Inc.

Vince McMahan's WWE and parent company of UFC, Endeavor, are combining in a $21 billion deal.

Endeavor will hold a 51% controlling interest in the new company, while WWE shareholders will have a 49% stake. The deal values UFC at $12.1 billion and WWE at $9.3 billion. The announcement comes hours after WWE hosted WrestleMania 39 in Inglewood, California.

Posted by FOX Business
Breaking News

OPEC+ meeting scheduled after oil production cut announced

OPEC and OPEC+, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, the United Arab Emirates and several other countries, announced a surprise oil production cut of more than 1 million barrels per day.

The move pushed oil prices to the $80 per barrel level.

The oil output reduction will be in effect from May through the end of 2023.

OPEC+ ministers are scheduled to hold a virtual meeting on Monday.

Posted by FOX Business

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