Morning Buzz: Alaska Communications Systems (ALSK), Yahoo Inc. (YHOO), Rocket Fuel (FUEL), Google (GOOGL)

Shares of Alaska Communications Systems Group (ALSK) spiked around 57% in pre-market trading after the company announced plans to sell its remaining wireless assets to GCI Communications, Inc. (GNCMA) for $300 million.

Alaska Communications said a stronger balance sheet, combined with top and bottom line growth, better positions the company to evaluate a variety of additional opportunities to create shareholder value.

“Selling our wireless business increases attention to our greatest areas of growth and highest levels of profitability,” said in a statement Alaska Comm.’s President and CEO Anand Vadapalli. “Upon closing, we will significantly strengthen our balance sheet by reducing debt by $250 million.”

Following closing, the company expects to improve its cash flow from operations by creating synergies of approximately $12 million.

Alaska shares recently gained $0.73 to $1.97. In the past 52 weeks, shares of Anchorage, Alaska-based provider of integrated communications services have traded between a low of $1.18 and a high of $2.70.

ALSK is down 14.16% year-to-date.

Yahoo Inc. (YHOO) was upgraded to ‘Buy’ from ‘Neutral’ at BofA (BAC) on Friday, according to a research note issued to clients Friday morning. The investment firm upgraded web portal’s stock based on increased optimism from its stake in Alibaba Group (BABA) and a slight improvement in the core business outlook. Price target was raised to $62 from $55, implying 21% expected return from ticker’s current pps.

In other Yahoo news this morning, The WSJ reports that research firm eMarketer predicts Yahoo will edge past Twitter (TWTR) in terms of mobile ad revenue.

YHOO shares recently gained $0.81 to $51.22. The name, currently valued at $47.76B, has a median Wall Street price target of $53.00 with a high target of $63.00. In the past 12 months, shares of Sunnyvale, Calif.-based internet giant have traded between a low of $32.15 and a high of $52.62 with the 50-day MA and 200-day MA located at $47.60 and $39.66 levels, respectively. Additionally, shares of YHOO trade at a P/E ratio of 5.16 and have a Relative Strength Index (RSI) and MACD indicator of 58.27 and -0.79, respectively.

YHOO currently prints a one year return of about 32.21% and a year-to-date return of around 24.65%.

Shares of Rocket Fuel Inc. (FUEL) are down $0.81, or 5.04%, at $15.25 after Maxim Group initiated coverage of the stock with a ‘Sell’ rating and a $10 price target, writing that they do not see a clear path to a level of profitability justifying the name’s current valuation.

Fundamentally, FUEL shows the following financial data:

· $111.63 million cash
· $210.708 million total current assets
· $69.67 million total mrq debt
· ($20,932) net income

On valuation measures, Rocket Fuel shares have a t-12 price/sales ratio of 1.87 and a price/book for the same period is 2.06. EPS is ($1.32). FUEL has a market cap of $665M and a median Wall Street price target of $22.

Shares of the artificial-intelligence digital ad solutions provider are down 66.03% year-over-year and 73.82% year-to-date.

Google (GOOGL) shares are down nearly 6 points to $536.78 on Friday, after analysts at Bank of America (BAC) downgraded the stock to ‘Neutral’ from ‘Buy’ and lowered their price target to $580 from $600 citing lack of product catalysts, search maturity, and margin pressure from investments.

Google is down more than 4% this year and has gained roughly 1.50% over the past 12 months.

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