Lowe's, Oracle, American Airlines: Stocks That Defined the Week
By Francesca Fontana
Americans are turning into fixer-uppers during the pandemic as
they spend less on vacations and gyms, giving Lowe's and Home Depot
a boost. Revenue surged at the home-improvement retailers as sales
to do-it-yourself consumers outpaced demand from professional
contractors. The DIY trend played to Lowe's advantage in the
quarter, as it relies less on sales to contractors than Home Depot
does. Lowe's shares added 0.2% Wednesday.
The McFight between the fast-food-food giant and its former boss
escalated this week when former Chief Executive Officer Steve
Easterbrook said his former employer had information about his
relationships with other employees when it negotiated his
multimillion-dollar severance package. McDonald's sued Mr.
Easterbrook on Aug. 10, saying he lied to investigators and its
board to cover up those relationships to secure the payout.
McDonald's has taken the unusual move of seeking to claw back Mr.
Easterbrook's severance in court after firing him in November,
exposing the company and its board to a rare public fight over
compensation awarded to a former executive. McDonald's shares rose
A company with close ties to the White House is President
Trump's new favorite bidder for TikTok. Oracle has entered the
running to buy the U.S. operations of TikTok, adding a fresh
wrinkle to the bidding for the Chinese-owned video-sharing app, and
the president offered his endorsement Tuesday. TikTok's owner,
ByteDance Ltd., is facing a fall deadline from the Trump
administration to divest itself of its U.S. operations. Oracle has
closer ties to the White House than most other parties involved in
the bidding. Larry Ellison, the company's co-founder, chairman and
largest shareholder, earlier this year threw a fundraiser at his
house for the president. Oracle shares gained 2.2% Tuesday.
Apple became the first U.S. public company to join the $2
trillion club. It surpassed that market value for the first time
Wednesday, highlighting the iPhone maker's commanding role in the
world economy. The stock has more than doubled from its March 23
low, boosted by steady demand for the company's devices and
better-than-feared results in its core iPhone business as millions
of Americans work from home. The milestone is the latest for Apple
under Chief Executive Tim Cook, who succeeded late co-founder and
product inventor Steve Jobs in 2011. Shares of Apple rose as much
as 1.4% to $468.65, eclipsing the $467.77 mark needed to reach the
milestone, and ended up 0.1% Wednesday.
Target hit the bull's-eye during this pandemic. The big-box
retailer reported the strongest quarterly sales growth in its
history on Wednesday, citing broad gains across categories such as
food, electronics and home goods and a rebound in clothing sales.
The pandemic has boosted the fortunes of big U.S. chains like
Target that were able to stay open and feed America's basic needs.
The company has benefited as coronavirus concerns fueled demand for
services that let shoppers pick up goods in parking lots or skip
trips to the store. Target also sells groceries and other household
staples that have been in demand as Americans cook and clean more
in their homes. Target shares jumped 13% Wednesday.
American Airlines Group Inc.
It just got more difficult to fly from here to there if you live
in certain parts of the U.S. American Airlines said it would stop
flights to 15 cities once the federal aid for airlines expires in
October, an announcement that could escalate pressure on lawmakers
to extend another round of aid. The $25 billion bailout required
airlines to maintain a certain level of flying to cities in their
networks so that no city was cut off entirely. The cuts will affect
airports in cities including New Haven, Conn., and Stillwater,
Okla.; some aren't served by any other airline. American struck the
cities from its schedule from Oct. 7 through Nov. 3, saying it was
the first step in re-evaluating its network in the coming weeks.
American Airlines shares fell 1.4% Thursday.
You're still able to get a Lyft in California -- for now. A
state appeals court on Thursday paused a lower-court ruling that
required the ride-hailing company and its rival Uber Technologies
Inc. to reclassify their drivers as employees. The reprieve means
both companies can continue operating while they fight a
high-stakes legal battle with their home state. California sued
Lyft and Uber in May for allegedly violating the law, which would
require the companies to treat workers as employees rather than
independent contractors. As employees, drivers would be eligible
for sick days and other benefits, issues that have become more
pressing during the coronavirus pandemic. The San Francisco
companies have argued that they are technology platforms, not
transportation companies, so the drivers aren't part of their usual
course of business. Lyft shares gained 5.8% Thursday.
Write to Francesca Fontana at email@example.com
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
August 21, 2020 19:19 ET (23:19 GMT)
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