Consumer Business Recap: Starboard Top Office Depot Investor, Starbucks’s Amazing Feat

Starboard Value LP’s new 13.3 percent investment in Office Depot Inc. (NYSE:ODP) makes it officially the top shareholder in the company; the group is already stressing the point that a downsizing is in order, in the expectation that smaller store formats could bring higher operating margins. Meanwhile, Staples, Inc. (NASDAQ:SPLS) shares spiked on the news, then fell back.

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Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX) accomplished the difficult feat of growing its margins in the face of higher input (coffee) prices, which is prompting the Seeking Alpha author Mathias Holmstrom to ask whether the company will be able to do even better once the lower prices of its forward purchase contracts kick in. This intriguing prospect could have shares looking quite attractive for another run.

It appears that Carl Icahn is heading for a loss, as Oshkosh Corporation (NYSE:OSK) seems set to reject his idea of a separation or spinoff of its divisions, according to reports from an analyst meeting. Additionally, executives comment that only acquisitions which aren’t very large will be considered, which implies that a merger with Navistar International Corporation (NYSE:NAV) does not seem likely.

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