Target Falls Shy, SodaStream’s Stretched Valuation, and 3 More Hot Stocks

Target (NYSE:TGT): Shares are dropping after the company reported higher than expected earnings, but missed slightly on revenue. Weather patterns were cited as causing weak performance for apparel and other seasonal items, as comparable-store sales in U.S. stores fell slightly by 0.6 percent during the period. Canadian sales brought in $86 million with a gross margin rate of 38.4 percent, though start-up expenses kept the launch of the 24 stores in the nation from adding to profitability.

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SodaStream (NASDAQ:SODA): JPMorgan has downgraded shares of SodaStream, based largely on valuation concerns. The firm now holds Neutral rating on the shares, down from Overweight.

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American Eagle Outfitters (NYSE:AEO): Slight beats to both earnings and revenue have helped push shares slightly higher, following the release of the company’s quarterly report on Wednesday. Comparable-store sales fell 5 percent, though the standards were set high last year when warmer weather product lines were introduced earlier. Profit was helped by favorable products costs and sourcing efficiencies, but the retailer noted a higher rate of markdowns during the period.

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Chesapeake Energy (NYSE:CHK): Susquehanna’s blessing has edged Chesapeake shares higher, when the firm put a Positive rating on the stock, from Neutral. Susquehanna cited a boost from both higher oil and gas prices and its new CEO, who analyst Duane Grupert believes “has a good shot at rebranding Chesapeake and enhancing sentiment towards the name.”

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Kohl’s Corp. (NYSE:KSS): The retail giant has named Michelle Gass as its new Chief Customer Officer, a new role at the company. Gass was a key figure in the Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) turnaround a few years ago, and will oversee areas including e-commerce and marketing for Kohl’s.

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