J.C. Penney STREAMLINES Operation and 4 Stocks on the 52-Week Low List

Bridgepoint Educatio (NYSE:BPI) sees its shares downgraded by Piper Jaffray, which pointed to increased regulatory uncertainty subsequent to the Western Association of Schools and Colleges’ denial of Ashford University’s application for accreditation. Piper lowered its price target on the shares to $18. Shares closed down 8.28 percent at $13.07, having traded between $14.24 and $30.62 in a 52-week range.

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Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ:EA): Sales of video games software dropped by 29 percent in June, compared year-to-year with 2011, says data from the consumer market research firm NPD, which was relayed to investors by the research firm Piper Jaffray predicted earlier on Tuesday, with the data due to be released Thursday night. Piper favors video game makers with growing exposure to social and mobile games, and kept its Overweight on Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:ERTS) and Zynga (NASDAQ:ZNGA). At the same time, Piper forecasts that the NPD data will indicate that Electronic Arts’ sales dropped 19 percent in June (as opposed to the NPD’s 29 percent estimate). Piper pointed out that EA didn’t introduce any new titles last month and is facing tough comparables with June 2011, at which time it released two top-notch titles. Shares closed down 2.93 percent on the day at $11.59, having traded in a 52-week range of $11.67 to $26.13.

Hewlett-Packard Company’s (NYSE:HPQ) U.S. stores head Demos Parneros expects tablets from Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), and Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) to push sales, and also remarks that Google Nexus interest is competitive to Kindle Fire, according to Bloomberg report. In addition, Parneros says that a new HPtablet might be forthcoming. Separately, H-P announced that PULSE, a Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS) company, has chosen an H-P Converged Infrastructure to handle increasing consumer debit card use while at the same time delivering efficient transaction processing services to clients. Shares closed down 1.65 percent on the day at $19.11, having traded in a 52-week range of $19.12 to $37.70.

Investment Technolog (NYSE:ITG) received a 3.45 passive investment by Third Avenue. Shares closed down 3.53 percent on the day at $8.21, having traded in a 52-week range of $8.27 to $13.82.

J.C. Penney Company (NYSE:JCP) says that the restructuring program it launched in April through which to create a leaner and more simplified operating structure, is now basically finished. CEO Ron Johnson commented that, “One of the most challenging tasks for any leadership team is to reorganize a company. In April, we began right-sizing our headquarters from a people perspective to align our teams with J.C. Penney’s new business model. The actions taken today mark the final phase of those efforts.We have simplified processes, removed unnecessary work and reduced layers to help us make better and faster decisions. While difficult, these decisions are in the long-term interests of jcp and our stakeholders.” This announcement will mean the elimination of about 350 positions at J.C. Penney’s headquarters. The savings generated by these moves will add to the firm’s previously announced intention to reach an annual run rate of approximately $900 million in expense savings by the end of this year, which is one year ahead of its initial plan. Shares closed down 5.76 percent on the day at $20.76, having traded in a 52-week range of $21.34 to $43.18.

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