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Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.
What: Shares of beauty products supplier Avon Products (NYSE: AVP ) are looking oh-so-pretty, as its stock shot up as much as 12% following the buzz that the takeover bid from Coty launched last month may actually come to fruition.
So what: The big news of the day is that JAB Holdings announced that it was selling a 4.9% stake in Reckitt Benckiser, which would net the company approximately $2.1 billion. This is relevant because JAB is also the majority owner of Coty, the cosmetics company that made a $10 billion bid for Avon last month. The move is largely seen as JAB garnering extra finances to help facilitate the potential takeover.
Now what: Just what Avon's stock needed: more speculation. Whether or not Coty does wind up purchasing Avon seems trite to me given that Avon's business has been struggling. In its latest quarter, sales dropped 1% while price increases provided the only boost. That's notable because beauty salons Ulta Salon (Nasdaq: ULTA ) and Sally Beauty Holdings (NYSE: SBH ) have both been crushing Wall Street's expectations. Avon's problems seemed to be confined to Avon (thankfully for the sector) and its ridiculously large pile of debt. I'd just as soon continue to avoid the company altogether.
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