Fed Minutes, Hotel IPOs, and Some Toilet-Worthy Bed Bath & Beyond Earnings

Good evening, good lookin'. Here are the three things you need to know on April 10.

Apr 9, 2014 at 11:00PM
Man, can the Fed be fun. The day after the first-quarter earnings season kicked off, some key details from America's central bank helped the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES:^DJI) surge 181 points Wednesday.
1. Bed Bath & Beyond earnings get flushed
You can't wash away an earnings report like this, Bed, Bath & Beyond (NASDAQ:BBBY). Shares of your mom's favorite retailer (behind Crate & Barrel) dropped over 5% in after-hours trading Wednesday following the company's somewhat toilet bowl-worthy earnings report for the final quarter of 2013.

How were the numbers? A tad dirty. Revenue nationwide dropped almost 6% in the all-important, holiday-heavy fourth quarter of the year, for a total of $3.2 billion in sales. While that not-so-hot figure matched analysts' downward expectations, the real stain was the small 1.7% rise in same-store sales, notably below the 2.5% rise during the same quarter last year -- plus, the company lowered its first-quarter projections for 2014.

The interesting thing is that CEO Steven Temares didn't offer investors any commentary on the report, but earlier in March he played the foul-weather game, commenting that, like other retailers, the brutal winter weather affected his company's shoppers, too. Wall Street now hopes the company won't have to wait for success until the fall, when incoming college freshmen crush Bed Bath & Beyond stores nationwide to pack their small dorms with plastic toiletry accessories.

2. Fed minutes reveal stimulus details
According to the juicy, gossipy details of the Federal Reserve's last meeting, Fed representatives aren't planning to slow down stimulus as quickly as investors had initially thought. Those meeting minutes are based on the central bank's eight-times-per-year policy-setting meeting that took place last month, and the detes are released at a later date, so investors don't too aggressively move the market after the initial meeting.

Keep in mind that investors love the Fed's economy-boosting stimulus policies like they're caffeinated milkshakes (we're talking really good milkshakes). Under the Fed's quantitative easing policy, it's been buying long-term bonds monthly to lower interest rates and encourage borrowing -- but as the economy has improved, the Fed has decreased its purchases from $85 billion to $55 billion in those bonds, which stim-cravin' Wall Street wasn't fond of.

The takeaway is that in the minutes, members of the Fed made clear that they "overstated the shift in the projections" regarding how much they would tighten the stimulus policy by. Investors like stimulus so much that just those key points hinting at stimulus lasting longer than originally expected was enough to get stocks poppin' like they're hot.
3. La Quinta is the newest Blackstone hotel IPO
Blackstone Investment Firm likes to buy companies, invest in certain areas of the business and cut back in others -- and then hire Alicia Silverstone to give them makeovers to win over the men and women on Wall Street. Such is the business of private equity firms, and Blackstone's hotel La Quinta (NYSE:LQ) debuted Wednesday on the New York Stock exchange by gaining 0.7% from the IPO price of $17 per share.   
It's not tech, but IPOs are always sexy in Wall Street's eyes. The Blackstone Group (NYSE:BX) bought the mid-price hotel chain in 2006. It cleaned up the place, exterminated the cockroaches, and doubled the size to 834 hotels as of 2013. By spilling a bucket of LQ shares onto the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday, Blackstone raised $650 million cash for the company, which will be used to pay down debt.
How did the IPO work out for Blackstone? As Blackstone begins to say goodbye to its baby, it wants to realize profits. It was hoping for $18-$21 per share but only got $17. The $17 price dove right after the bell by 4% but eventually climbed up to about even on the first day.
It's also the third hotel chain that Blackstone dumped in the past six months. Hilton Hotels (NYSE: HLT) and Extended Stay America (NYSE: STAY) both went public recently, so clearly the Wall Street private equity firm is done with the hotels. Hotel businesses suffered badly during the depressing lows of the financial crisis, so the time is right for Blackstone cash in on their investments.

  • Weekly jobless claims
  • First-quarter earnings reports: Rite Aid, Family Dollar Stores

As originally published on MarketSnacks.com

The greatest thing Warren Buffett ever said
Warren Buffett has made billions through his investing and he wants you to be able to invest like him. Through the years, Buffett has offered up investing tips to shareholders of Berkshire Hathaway. Now you can tap into the best of Warren Buffett's wisdom in a new special report from The Motley Fool. Click here now for a free copy of this invaluable report.

Jack Kramer and Nick Martell have no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Bed Bath & Beyond and Berkshire Hathaway and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

1 Key Step to Get Rich

Our mission at The Motley Fool is to help the world invest better. Whether that’s helping people overcome their fear of stocks all the way to offering clear and successful guidance on complicated-sounding options trades, we can help.

Feb 1, 2016 at 4:54PM

To be perfectly clear, this is not a get-rich action that my Foolish colleagues and I came up with. But we wouldn't argue with the approach.

A 2015 Business Insider article titled, "11 websites to bookmark if you want to get rich" rated The Motley Fool as the #1 place online to get smarter about investing.

"The Motley Fool aims to build a strong investment community, which it does by providing a variety of resources: the website, books, a newspaper column, a radio [show], and [newsletters]," wrote (the clearly insightful and talented) money reporter Kathleen Elkins. "This site has something for every type of investor, from basic lessons for beginners to investing commentary on mutual funds, stock sectors, and value for the more advanced."

Our mission at The Motley Fool is to help the world invest better, so it's nice to receive that kind of recognition. It lets us know we're doing our job.

Whether that's helping the entirely uninitiated overcome their fear of stocks all the way to offering clear and successful guidance on complicated-sounding options trades, we want to provide our readers with a boost to the next step on their journey to financial independence.

Articles and beyond

As Business Insider wrote, there are a number of resources available from the Fool for investors of all levels and styles.

In addition to the dozens of free articles we publish every day on our website, I want to highlight two must-see spots in your tour of fool.com.

For the beginning investor

Investing can seem like a Big Deal to those who have yet to buy their first stock. Many investment professionals try to infuse the conversation with jargon in order to deter individual investors from tackling it on their own (and to justify their often sky-high fees).

But the individual investor can beat the market. The real secret to investing is that it doesn't take tons of money, endless hours, or super-secret formulas that only experts possess.

That's why we created a best-selling guide that walks investors-to-be through everything they need to know to get started. And because we're so dedicated to our mission, we've made that available for free.

If you're just starting out (or want to help out someone who is), go to www.fool.com/beginners, drop in your email address, and you'll be able to instantly access the quick-read guide ... for free.

For the listener

Whether it's on the stationary exercise bike or during my daily commute, I spend a lot of time going nowhere. But I've found a way to make that time benefit me.

The Motley Fool offers five podcasts that I refer to as "binge-worthy financial information."

Motley Fool Money features a team of our analysts discussing the week's top business and investing stories, interviews, and an inside look at the stocks on our radar. It's also featured on several dozen radio stations across the country.

The hosts of Motley Fool Answers challenge the conventional wisdom on life's biggest financial issues to reveal what you really need to know to make smart money moves.

David Gardner, co-founder of The Motley Fool, is among the most respected and trusted sources on investing. And he's the host of Rule Breaker Investing, in which he shares his insights into today's most innovative and disruptive companies ... and how to profit from them.

Market Foolery is our daily look at stocks in the news, as well as the top business and investing stories.

And Industry Focus offers a deeper dive into a specific industry and the stories making headlines. Healthcare, technology, energy, consumer goods, and other industries take turns in the spotlight.

They're all informative, entertaining, and eminently listenable ... and I don't say that simply because the hosts all sit within a Nerf-gun shot of my desk. Rule Breaker Investing and Answers contain timeless advice, so you might want to go back to the beginning with those. The other three take their cues from the market, so you'll want to listen to the most recent first. All are available at www.fool.com/podcasts.

But wait, there's more

The book and the podcasts – both free ... both awesome – also come with an ongoing benefit. If you download the book, or if you enter your email address in the magical box at the podcasts page, you'll get ongoing market coverage sent straight to your inbox.

Investor Insights is valuable and enjoyable coverage of everything from macroeconomic events to investing strategies to our analyst's travels around the world to find the next big thing. Also free.

Get the book. Listen to a podcast. Sign up for Investor Insights. I'm not saying that any of those things will make you rich ... but Business Insider seems to think so.

Compare Brokers