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Amazon Q3 EPS misses estimates; Henkel CEO to step down

TOP NEWS

* Seattle-based e-commerce giant Amazon.com Inc. reported third-quarter diluted EPS of $4.23, down from $5.75 a year ago and missing the S&P Global Market Intelligence mean consensus estimate of $4.55. Revenue grew 24% year over year to $69.98 billion. Amazon forecasts its net sales for the fourth quarter to range between $80 billion and $86.5 billion, factoring in an unfavorable impact of approximately 80 basis points from foreign exchange rates.

* Henkel AG & Co. KGaA CEO Hans Van Bylen will step down for personal reasons and will hand over the position to CFO Carsten Knobel, effective Jan. 1, 2020. Knobel's replacement as CFO is still being decided. The company's shares fell nearly 5% following the announcement.

TEXTILES, APPAREL AND LUXURY GOODS

* Jacopo Venturini, executive vice president of merchandising and markets at Kering SA-owned Gucci, is leaving the fashion brand, with market sources suggesting that the industry veteran may be returning to Prada, Women's Wear Daily reported. A Gucci spokesman reportedly confirmed to the fashion journal that Venturini's role will be split between in-house talents Matteo Giopp and Maurizio Pisanu following his departure.

* Three Forever 21 Inc. stores in the U.K. will collectively launch a £30 million stock clearance sale as the U.S. fashion retailer works to shore up its finances after filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, administrators from RSM Restructuring Advisory LLP confirmed. Forever 21 U.K. Ltd. appointed joint administrators from RSM on Sept. 30.

* Barneys New York Inc. is nearing a sale to Nine West owner Authentic Brands Group LLC and investment firm B. Riley Financial Inc. for $271.4 million after an offer from another potential buyer fell through, Reuters reported, citing people familiar with the matter. Barneys now plans to call off an auction scheduled for Oct. 28 after a competing bid from Israeli businessman Samuel Ben-Avraham failed, sources told Reuters.

* Adidas AG opened a new flagship store on Oxford Street in London that combines physical retail with the footwear giant's digital app experience. Through Adidas' Bring It To Me app, customers at the store would be able to scan products, check stock, request their size and purchase items instantly without having to line up to the checkout counter.

* Moody's affirmed Nike Inc.'s A1 senior unsecured rating and P-1 short term commercial paper rating, with a stable outlook, citing the company's significant scale in the global sportswear market, its distinctive logo and its solid revenue, earnings and cash flow growth.

* C&A Modas SA, the Brazilian arm of Dutch fashion retailer C&A, is planning to raise 1.8 billion reais in its IPO in Brazil, Reuters reported, citing a securities filing and two other sources. The company reportedly priced its shares at the bottom end of its 16.50 reais to 20 reais price range.

* Kering SA, the owner of the Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent brands, reported a 14.2% increase in reported revenues for the third quarter of 2019, reflecting growth in all its businesses. Revenue rose to €3.88 billion from €3.40 billion in the third quarter of 2018. On a comparable basis, revenue rose 11.6%. The results were slightly ahead of forecasts.

MULTILINE RETAIL

* A landmark judgment in Australia ruled that department store chain Myer Holdings Ltd. misled its investors when CEO Bernie Brookes disclosed inflated profit forecasts for 2015 compared with the A$98.5 million posted a year earlier, The Australian Financial Review reported. Brookes and current Myer CEO John King reportedly declined to comment. The company has ruled out an appeal, the newspaper also said.

E-COMMERCE

* U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., are pushing for an investigation into Amazon.com Inc.'s potential federal law violation when it failed to secure its servers before a cyber breach that compromised the personal data of 100 million Capital One customers. In a letter to the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, the senators said the e-commerce giant "shares some responsibility" for the breach because it continued to sell defective cloud computing services even after it was allegedly made aware that Amazon Web Services was vulnerable to attacks. Amazon did not immediately respond to a request for comment from S&P Global Market Intelligence.

* The Japan Fair Trade Commission has completed its investigation into Rakuten Inc.'s travel arm about six months after it started probing the unit for alleged violations of the Antimonopoly Act. Rakuten Travel Inc. submitted a commitment plan to the commission, which does not necessarily indicate that the company violated antimonopoly laws, the Japanese company said.

* Online market place Farfetch Ltd. will offer men's and women's accessories and skiwear from Prada SpA's Linea Rossa range as part of a partnership between the two companies, Women's Wear Daily reported.

HOUSEHOLD AND PERSONAL PRODUCTS

* Essity AB (publ)'s adjusted EPS for the third quarter of 2019 grew 27% to 10.59 Swedish kronor from 8.35 kronor in 2018, while net sales of the personal-products maker increased 9% year over year to 95.29 billion kronor.

FOOD AND STAPLES RETAILING

* CVS Health Corp. unit CVS Pharmacy Inc. will offer a free safe medication disposal option, starting in 2020, and add more than 1,000 in-store safe medication disposal units to its locations across the U.S. CVS Pharmacy will also donate up to 400 more units to local police departments, in addition to the more than 990 units already donated.

* 7-Eleven Inc.'s fuel app has been hit with a data breach that enabled users in Australia to view other customers' names, email addresses, mobile numbers and dates of birth, The Guardian reported. The app went offline for hours after a customer notified the company about the issue, the report said. The convenience store chain, operated by Seven & i Holdings Co. Ltd., confirmed the data breach to the newspaper, saying it is still investigating the matter and has "informed the relevant authorities."

HOUSEHOLD DURABLES AND SPECIALTY RETAIL

* Panasonic Corp. teamed up with Hong Kong manufacturer Welcome Air-Tech to co-develop air conditioning and ventilation solutions for the commercial sector in Southeast Asia.

* Hedge fund Third Point LLC expressed its disappointment at Sony Corp.'s turning down a proposal to spin off its semiconductor unit and instead "maintain the status quo with no concrete proposals to improve the business." In the letter to Third Point's shareholders, the fund also disclosed that it owns an approximately $700 million stake in EssilorLuxottica SA and called on the eyewear maker to "accelerate leadership transitions and delineate a timely merger strategy." Sony and EssilorLuxottica did not immediately respond to S&P Global Market Intelligence's requests for comment.

HOTELS, RESORTS AND CRUISE LINES

* Bluegreen Vacations Corp. expanded its branded store-in-store concept in select shops of Cabela's Inc., marking the next stage of its 19-year partnership with the specialty retailer's parent, BPS Direct LLC, which does business as Bass Pro Inc. The Florida-based vacation ownership company plans to open kiosks at 15 Cabela's locations by the end of 2019.

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The day ahead

Early morning futures indicators pointed to a higher opening for the U.S. market.

In Asia, the Hang Seng was down 0.49% to 26,667.39, and the Nikkei 225 rose 0.22% to 22,799.81.

In Europe, around midday, the FTSE 100 slipped 0.56% to 7,287.66, and the Euronext 100 was down 0.45% to 1,094.03.

On the macro front

The consumer sentiment report, the Baker-Hughes Rig Count report and the Treasury budget are due out today.

Click here to read about today's financial markets, setting out the factors driving stocks, bonds and currencies around the world ahead of the New York open.

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