Even if they rubbed Aladdin's lamp, investors couldn't have wished for better earnings news than they got from The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS ) last week -- the worldwide entertainment legend reported $11.65 billion in revenue for the magical first quarter of 2014, notably beating the $11.25 billion Wall Street was projecting.
So what was driving all the fun over in the Magic Kingdom during the first three months of 2014? For Disney, it was all about the movie Frozen. In the earnings report, Disney execs noted that the holiday feature became the highest-earning animated movie in history, with an entertaining $1 billion in total ticket sales globally. Plus, around 90% of the top 10 Disney toys sold recently have been related to the movie. Not too shabby, Walt.
But one movie isn't the reason Disney stock is up over 7% so far this year. In 2013, Disney's theme parks set records and Mickey is starting to put his money where the crowds are. As part of the earnings report, Disney announced a $800 million investment in Shanghai Disney and a fresh new roller coaster in Disney World. Sign us up.
2. Stock loser of the week
While you were busy checking out Gilt. for some fun luxury product deals, the everyman's daily deal site Groupon (NASDAQ: GRPN ) reported some unimpressive losses in the first three months of 2014 at $38 million, a big jump from the $4 million loss in 2013. And it's all from the company stuffing money into its marketing campaigns, trying to get back customers.
Where did the customers go? You tell us -- tired of getting all those Groupon daily deal emails? So is everyone else who was a customer. So the execs over at Groupon are making a push now for you to use the Groupon App when you're looking for last minute cheap theater tickets. The question to shareholders is whether Groupon can make this transition through its marketing efforts.
That's not the only change going on at Groupon. The company is also going to be posting its deals on Amazon, resulting in occasional free shipping to your home. Plus, the comapny will be shipping more goods from its Kentucky-based distribution center. But overall, keep in mind that investors are getting more concerned about the evolving business model, and sent the stock down over 20% on the day of its earnings report.
4. Janet Yellen hangs out with Congress
Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen took advantage of some spring-ish weather and walked over to Congress to testify on the state of the economy to the Joint Economic Committee. She's no weatherwoman, but admitted that this past winter definitely made the U.S. economy "pause" in the first quarter -- but she expects "a somewhat faster pace" of growth in the second quarter. Investors, though, were more excited about that fact that she will maintain the central bank's "quantitative easing" stimulus policies, even though the Fed might scale back their intensity a bit.
- Monday: The Treasury's budget; first-quarter earnings reports: Cosi, Foxconn
- Tuesday: April retail sales; earnings reports: Airbus, Fossil
- Wednesday: NAHB Small Biz Index; earnings reports: Jack in the Box, Kate Spade, SeaWorld
- Thursday: Empire State Manufacturing Index; earnings reports: J.C. Penney, Nordstrom
- Friday: Reuters/University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Poll
MarketSnacks Fact of the Day: Just two years after their athletic careers end, 78% of former NFL players are bankrupt or nearly bankrupt.
As originally published on MarketSnacks.com
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