U.S. STOCKS Watch List – AK Steel Holding Corporation (NYSE:AKS), Rite Aid Corporation (NYSE:RAD), The Charles Schwab (NYSE:SCHW), Reynolds American (NYSE:RAI)

ECONOMIC NEWS UPDATE: The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® (LEI) for the U.S. raised 0.1 percent in August to 123.7 (2010 = 100), following no change in July, and a 0.6 percent improvement in June.

The U.S. LEI suggests economic growth will remain moderate into the New Year, with little reason to expect growth to pick up substantially, said Ataman Ozyildirim, Director of Business Cycles and Growth Research at The Conference Board. Average working hours and new orders in manufacturing have been weak, pointing to more slow growth in the industrial sector. However, employment, personal income and manufacturing and trade sales have all been rising, assisting to offset the weakness in industrial production in recent months.

The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® (CEI) for the U.S. raised 0.1 percent in August to 112.6 (2010 = 100), following a 0.4 percent improvement in July, and a 0.1 percent improvement in June.

The Conference Board Lagging Economic Index® (LAG) for the U.S. raised 0.2 percent in August to 118.5 (2010 = 100), following a 0.3 percent improvement in July, and a 0.9 percent improvement in June.

The composite economic indexes are the key elements in an analytic system designed to signal peaks and troughs in the business cycle. The leading, coincident, and lagging economic indexes are essentially composite averages of several individual leading, coincident, or lagging indicators. They are constructed to summarize and reveal common turning point patterns in economic data in a clearer and more convincing manner than any individual component – primarily because they smooth out some of the volatility of individual components.

The Conference Board is a global, independent business membership and research association working in the public interest. Our mission is unique: To provide the worlds leading organizations with the practical knowledge they need to improve their performance and better serve society. The Conference Board is a non-advocacy, not-for-profit entity holding 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt status in the United States.

U.S. STOCKS NEWS: On Friday, Shares of AK Steel Holding Corporation (NYSE:AKS), remained flat to $2.81.

AK Steel Holding Corporation offered guidance for its third quarter 2015 financial results. AK Steel said that it anticipates to report a net loss of $0.02 to $0.07 per diluted share of common stock for the third quarter of 2015, reflecting an improvement from the net loss of $0.36 per diluted share in the second quarter of 2015. AK Steel said it anticipates the positive financial effects of higher shipments, lower raw material costs, cost reduction efforts and higher operating rates will partially offset lingering low carbon steel spot market prices.

For the third quarter of 2015, AK Steel anticipates shipments of about 1,860,000 tons, an improvement of about 3% contrast to the second quarter of 2015. The improvement in shipments quarter over quarter is primarily related to raised shipments to the automotive market.

AK Steel anticipates an average selling price of about $910 per ton for the third quarter of 2015, about 2% lower than the second quarter of 2015. The decrease in average selling price is primarily a result of lower carbon steel spot market pricing, which the company believes is principally driven by high levels of unfairly traded foreign steel imports. Lower costs for raw materials (principally iron ore pellets and carbon scrap) and energy, together with the results of continued efforts across the company to reduce costs, partially offset the effects of lower steel selling prices.

AK Steel Holding Corporation, through its partner, AK Steel Corporation, produces flat-rolled carbon, stainless and electrical steel, and tubular products in the United States and internationally. It produces flat-rolled value-added carbon steels, counting coated, cold-rolled, and hot-rolled carbon steel products; and specialty stainless and electrical steels in sheet and strip forms.

Shares of Rite Aid Corporation (NYSE:RAD), declined -1.96% to $7.51, during its last trading session, following the companys second quarter fiscal 2016 earnings results stated on Thursday before the market open.

However, analysts remain hopeful despite the stock falling on Thursday as earnings missed analysts estimates, Barrons.com reports.

For the latest quarter, Rite Aid posted earnings of 2 cents a share on revenue of $7.66 billion.

Analysts had predictable the company to report earnings of 4 cents a share. However, its recent quarter revenue beat analysts estimates of $7.57 billion.

UBS noted that the stocks reaction after the earnings release was unjustified. The firm kept its buy rating on the stock, together with a $10 price target, according to Barrons.com.

Rite Aid Corporation, through its auxiliaries, operates a chain of retail drugstores in the United States. The company sells prescription drugs and a range of other merchandise, counting over-the-counter medications, health and beauty aids, personal care items, cosmetics, household items, food and beverages, greeting cards, seasonal merchandise, and other every day and convenience products.

Shares of The Charles Schwab Corporation (NYSE:SCHW), declined -4.47% to $28.45, during its last trading session.

Investment analysts at Deutsche Bank have $38.00 target price per share on The Charles Schwab Corporation. Deutsche Bank’s target price per share suggests a potential upside of 32.27% from the company’s last stock close price. The rating was revealed to clients and investors in a note on Friday, 18 September.

Out of 17 brokers covering Charles Schwab, 0 rate it a Buy, 0 indicate a Hold while 0 suggest a Sell. The highest target is $40 and the lowest is $30.5 according to Thomson/First Call. The 12-month mean target is $35.91, which means upside potential of 25.21% over the current price.

The Charles Schwab Corporation, through its auxiliaries, provides wealth administration, securities brokerage, banking, money administration, and financial advisory services. The company operates through two segments, Investor Services and Advisor Services.

Finally, Shares of Reynolds American Inc. (NYSE:RAI), ended its last trade with -1.04% loss, and closed at $41.84.

R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company has issued the following release: R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company disagrees with FDA ruling on four of its cigarette brands.

In other news, Zacks upped Reynolds American’s stock stock from a “hold” to a “buy”. Along the rating upgrade, Zacks analysts gave a PT of $48.00 or 13.53% more.

According to data compiled by Thomson Reuters, Reynolds American (RAI)’s stock is covered by 7 equity analysts across the Street, with 0 analysts giving it a Sell rating, 8 a Buy rating, while 2 consider it a Hold. The 12-month consensus target price for the stock is $45.29, which reflects an upside potential of 7.12% over the current price.

Reynolds American Inc., through its auxiliaries, manufactures and sells cigarettes and other tobacco products in the United States. It operates through RJR Tobacco, American Snuff, and Santa Fe segments. The RJR Tobacco segment offers cigarettes under the brand names of CAMEL, PALL MALL, WINSTON, KOOL, DORAL, SALEM, MISTY, and CAPRI; and CAMEL Snus, a smoke-free tobacco product, in addition to manages various licensed brands, counting DUNHILL and STATE EXPRESS 555.

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About Travis Garlick 1791 Articles
Been writing about and trading stocks since 2013. Manage a group of micro-cap investors on Facebook with over 15,000 members. Turned $8,500 into 185k the first year I started trading stocks and haven't looked back.