SoftBank Group’s quarterly profit wiped out by Vision Fund losses

Japan’s SoftBank Group Corp said on Wednesday its third-quarter operating profit fell 99%, well short of analyst estimates, pulled down by a second …

Quarterly profit at SoftBank Group Corp was almost wiped out as the Japanese technology giant was hit for a second straight quarter by losses at its $100 billion Vision Fund.

Wednesday’s dismal results could further dampen investor enthusiasm for founder Masayoshi Son’s big bets on untested start-ups. While Son told a news conference SoftBank had turned a corner, he also said he has been forced to scale back a second Vision Fund while investing with only SoftBank’s own capital.

That marks a major climbdown from July, when SoftBank said it had attracted $108 billion in pledges for a second mega-fund.

More pointedly, it shows how the bailout of start-up WeWork last year and other missteps have put a chill on the tech investing scene and given SoftBank shareholder Elliott ammunition to lobby for change.

“We have caused a lot of concern,” Son said in Tokyo following the results, adding he needs to “give everyone piece of mind” to secure outside funds for Vision Fund 2.

Group profit was 2.6 billion yen ($24 million) in the October-December quarter versus 438 billion yen a year before. The Vision Fund posted an operating loss of 225 billion yen ($2.05 billion) for the quarter compared with a 176 billion yen profit in the same period a year earlier.

But Son, known for an ebullience and charisma that is still rare in corporate Japan, said the company’s performance was already improving.

“The tide is turning,” he said.

Big stake

“Softbank should focus on one thing, shareholder value creation,” said Jeffries analyst Atul Goyal in a note to clients ahead of the earnings.

Son pointed to a rally in prices at the Vision Fund’s handful of listed investments and news overnight that a U.S. federal judge had rejected an antitrust challenge to the proposed merger of SoftBank’s Sprint Corp and T-Mobile US Inc.

Shares of SoftBank finished up 12% in Tokyo before the results and after the U.S. court decision.

Son has long argued SoftBank’s shares are undervalued, a position shared by U.S. hedge fund Elliott Management, which has recently emerged as a prominent shareholder. Elliott, one of the world’s best known activist investors, is pushing for changes including $20 billion in stock buybacks, sources said last week.

SoftBank has held discussions with Elliott and is aligned on improving shareholder value, Son said, adding that while open to potentially buying back shares, he was in “no hurry” to sell part of a 26% shareholding in Alibaba to fund buybacks.

The Vision Fund, which is backed by Saudi Arabia and has single-handedly changed the face of tech investing, said it had invested $74.6 billion in 88 companies as at the end of December, when those investments were worth $79.8 billion.

Analysts have said it is difficult to evaluate SoftBank’s performance due to a lack of disclosure around Vision Fund’s internal valuations.

Son’s investing credentials took a hit in the August-September quarter when the Vision Fund recorded an $8.9 billion operating loss.

Since then, a slew of portfolio companies – from hotel-booking platform Oyo to cloud robotics firm CloudMinds – have cut jobs and come under pressure to demonstrate the long-term viability of their business models.

The fund itself has also lost key employees.

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Acadian Asset Management LLC Purchases 60960 Shares of Zynex Inc. (OTCMKTS:ZYXI)

Acadian Asset Management LLC increased its stake in Zynex Inc. (OTCMKTS:ZYXI) by 127.6% in the second quarter, according to the company in its …

Zynex logoAcadian Asset Management LLC increased its stake in Zynex Inc. (OTCMKTS:ZYXI) by 127.6% in the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 108,737 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 60,960 shares during the quarter. Acadian Asset Management LLC owned about 0.34% of Zynex worth $978,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

Several other hedge funds also recently bought and sold shares of ZYXI. Strs Ohio acquired a new position in shares of Zynex during the 2nd quarter valued at $37,000. JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted its position in shares of Zynex by 969.3% in the second quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 4,277 shares of the company’s stock worth $37,000 after buying an additional 3,877 shares during the period. Sigma Planning Corp acquired a new stake in shares of Zynex in the first quarter worth $63,000. Wells Fargo & Company MN acquired a new stake in shares of Zynex in the second quarter worth $156,000. Finally, O Shaughnessy Asset Management LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Zynex in the first quarter worth $118,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 0.05% of the company’s stock.

Several analysts have recently commented on ZYXI shares. B. Riley raised their target price on Zynex from $9.00 to $10.75 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, August 2nd. Zacks Investment Research raised Zynex from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, June 27th.

In other news, CEO Thomas Sandgaard sold 131,260 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 19th. The stock was sold at an average price of $10.58, for a total value of $1,388,730.80. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link.

Shares of OTCMKTS:ZYXI opened at $9.00 on Friday. The business has a 50-day moving average of $9.05 and a two-hundred day moving average of $7.35. The stock has a market capitalization of $292.12 million, a P/E ratio of 40.91 and a beta of 1.05. Zynex Inc. has a fifty-two week low of $2.46 and a fifty-two week high of $11.75.

Zynex (OTCMKTS:ZYXI) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, July 31st. The company reported $0.06 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, meeting the consensus estimate of $0.06. Zynex had a return on equity of 152.81% and a net margin of 33.33%. The firm had revenue of $10.30 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $9.84 million. As a group, equities analysts forecast that Zynex Inc. will post 0.28 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

About Zynex

Zynex, Inc, a medical technology company, designs, manufactures, and markets electrotherapy medical devices used for pain management and rehabilitation. Its products include NexWave, a dual channel, multi-modality interferential current, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, and neuromuscular electrical stimulation device; NeuroMove, an electromyography triggered electrical stimulation device; and InWave, an electrical stimulation product for the treatment of female urinary incontinence.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Zynex (OTCMKTS:ZYXI)

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BlackRock Inc. Has $6.29 Billion Stock Holdings in Linde PLC (NYSE:LIN)

BlackRock Inc. cut its holdings in Linde PLC (NYSE:LIN) by 0.8% in the second quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities …

Linde logoBlackRock Inc. cut its holdings in Linde PLC (NYSE:LIN) by 0.8% in the second quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 31,320,227 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after selling 253,644 shares during the quarter. BlackRock Inc. owned about 5.75% of Linde worth $6,289,103,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also bought and sold shares of LIN. Krane Funds Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in Linde in the second quarter valued at approximately $25,000. Israel Discount Bank of New York acquired a new stake in shares of Linde in the first quarter worth $35,000. Alera Investment Advisors LLC lifted its stake in shares of Linde by 50.9% in the first quarter. Alera Investment Advisors LLC now owns 243 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $43,000 after buying an additional 82 shares during the last quarter. Ruggie Capital Group acquired a new stake in shares of Linde in the second quarter worth $48,000. Finally, Ibex Wealth Advisors acquired a new stake in shares of Linde in the second quarter worth $50,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 73.79% of the company’s stock.

In related news, VP Bernd Hugo Eulitz sold 335 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $186.43, for a total transaction of $62,454.05. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Insiders own 0.70% of the company’s stock.

A number of analysts have recently weighed in on the stock. KeyCorp boosted their price objective on shares of Linde from $205.00 to $220.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 9th. Jefferies Financial Group restated a “buy” rating on shares of Linde in a research note on Friday, June 21st. ValuEngine cut shares of Linde from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, August 6th. DZ Bank restated a “buy” rating on shares of Linde in a research note on Monday, July 22nd. Finally, Deutsche Bank boosted their price objective on shares of Linde from $205.00 to $215.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, August 6th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and thirteen have given a buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $201.83.

Shares of LIN stock opened at $191.57 on Friday. Linde PLC has a 1 year low of $145.95 and a 1 year high of $206.82. The firm’s fifty day simple moving average is $190.09 and its 200 day simple moving average is $187.07. The firm has a market capitalization of $101.20 billion, a P/E ratio of 29.06, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.06 and a beta of 0.76. The company has a current ratio of 1.02, a quick ratio of 0.85 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.23.

The business also recently announced a dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, September 17th. Investors of record on Tuesday, September 3rd will be given a dividend of $0.875 per share. The ex-dividend date is Friday, August 30th.

About Linde

Linde plc operates as an industrial gas company in primarily North and South America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, the Asia Pacific, and South Korea. The company offers oxygen, nitrogen, argon, rare gases, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, helium, hydrogen, electronic gases, specialty gases, and acetylene.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Linde (NYSE:LIN)

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Barrow Hanley Mewhinney & Strauss LLC Sells 2275 Shares of FutureFuel Corp. (NYSE:FF)

Finally, Renaissance Technologies LLC grew its stake in FutureFuel by 3.8% during the second quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns …

FutureFuel logoBarrow Hanley Mewhinney & Strauss LLC lowered its holdings in FutureFuel Corp. (NYSE:FF) by 3.7% during the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm owned 59,443 shares of the energy company’s stock after selling 2,275 shares during the quarter. Barrow Hanley Mewhinney & Strauss LLC owned 0.14% of FutureFuel worth $695,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also bought and sold shares of the company. Grantham Mayo Van Otterloo & Co. LLC grew its stake in FutureFuel by 18.4% during the second quarter. Grantham Mayo Van Otterloo & Co. LLC now owns 177,100 shares of the energy company’s stock worth $2,070,000 after buying an additional 27,500 shares during the last quarter. Northern Trust Corp grew its stake in FutureFuel by 2.6% during the second quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 366,476 shares of the energy company’s stock worth $4,284,000 after buying an additional 9,181 shares during the last quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio grew its stake in FutureFuel by 345.5% during the second quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 27,555 shares of the energy company’s stock worth $322,000 after buying an additional 21,370 shares during the last quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. grew its stake in FutureFuel by 40.1% during the second quarter. Pacer Advisors Inc. now owns 25,887 shares of the energy company’s stock worth $303,000 after buying an additional 7,416 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Renaissance Technologies LLC grew its stake in FutureFuel by 3.8% during the second quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 2,221,100 shares of the energy company’s stock worth $25,965,000 after buying an additional 80,300 shares during the last quarter. 49.03% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Separately, HC Wainwright reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $1.70 price objective on shares of FutureFuel in a research note on Monday, August 19th.

Shares of FF stock opened at $12.16 on Friday. FutureFuel Corp. has a 1 year low of $10.17 and a 1 year high of $19.31. The firm’s 50 day moving average is $11.02 and its 200-day moving average is $12.75. The firm has a market capitalization of $504.80 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.55 and a beta of 2.02.

FutureFuel (NYSE:FF) last announced its earnings results on Friday, August 9th. The energy company reported $0.08 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter. FutureFuel had a net margin of 7.69% and a return on equity of 5.18%. The company had revenue of $70.86 million for the quarter.

FutureFuel Company Profile

FutureFuel Corp., through its subsidiaries, manufactures and sells diversified chemical products, bio-based products, and bio-based specialty chemical products in the United States. It operates in two segments, Chemicals and Biofuels. The Chemicals segment manufactures and sells custom chemicals, including agrochemicals and intermediates, laundry detergent additives, biocides intermediates, specialty polymers, dyes, stabilizers, and chemicals intermediates; and chemicals used in consumer products consisting of cosmetics and personal care products, specialty polymers, and specialty products used in the fuels industry.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for FutureFuel (NYSE:FF)

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Allianz Asset Management GmbH Sells 3645 Shares of RumbleON, Inc. (OTCMKTS:RMBL)

Allianz Asset Management GmbH reduced its stake in RumbleON, Inc. (OTCMKTS:RMBL) by 3.6% in the second quarter, according to the company in …

RumbleON logoAllianz Asset Management GmbH reduced its stake in RumbleON, Inc. (OTCMKTS:RMBL) by 3.6% in the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 98,509 shares of the company’s stock after selling 3,645 shares during the period. Allianz Asset Management GmbH owned 0.47% of RumbleON worth $441,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

A number of other hedge funds also recently added to or reduced their stakes in RMBL. JPMorgan Chase & Co. bought a new position in RumbleON in the second quarter worth about $101,000. Trellus Management Company LLC raised its stake in RumbleON by 34.6% in the second quarter. Trellus Management Company LLC now owns 80,000 shares of the company’s stock worth $358,000 after buying an additional 20,550 shares in the last quarter. Delta Investment Management LLC bought a new position in RumbleON in the second quarter worth about $89,000. Spark Investment Management LLC raised its stake in RumbleON by 44.5% in the first quarter. Spark Investment Management LLC now owns 55,641 shares of the company’s stock worth $274,000 after buying an additional 17,141 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Millennium Management LLC bought a new position in RumbleON in the fourth quarter worth about $60,000.

RMBL has been the subject of a number of analyst reports. JMP Securities initiated coverage on shares of RumbleON in a research note on Tuesday, July 30th. They set an “outperform” rating and a $10.00 target price for the company. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of RumbleON from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, September 3rd. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $10.90.

Shares of OTCMKTS RMBL opened at $2.96 on Friday. RumbleON, Inc. has a fifty-two week low of $2.76 and a fifty-two week high of $10.98. The company has a 50 day simple moving average of $3.95 and a two-hundred day simple moving average of $4.57.

RumbleON (OTCMKTS:RMBL) last announced its earnings results on Monday, August 12th. The company reported ($0.52) earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of ($0.37) by ($0.15). The business had revenue of $270.18 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $233.97 million.

In other RumbleON news, Director Denmar John Dixon bought 47,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 19th. The stock was acquired at an average price of $3.76 per share, with a total value of $178,600.00. The acquisition was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link.

RumbleON Profile

RumbleON, Inc (RumbleON), formerly Smart Server Inc, is a development-stage company. The Company focuses on creating an e-commerce platform facilitating the ability of both consumers and dealers to Buy-Sell-Trade-Finance pre-owned recreation vehicles (RV). Serving both consumers and dealers, RumbleON makes such consumers or dealers a cash offer for the purchase of their vehicle.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for RumbleON (OTCMKTS:RMBL)

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