World News

Partnership leads to $205M deal for 520 Fifth Avenue

Supreme Court’s census ruling could harm other agencies

The Census Bureau was recently told by the Supreme Court not to put a question about citizenship on the 2020 decennial census.

The Supremes said the Trump administration didn’t put forth a compelling enough reason for posing that question. President Trump is fighting that decision.

We’ll see what happens.

But, meanwhile, what are all the other government agencies that also ask that question going to do? Will the various government agencies scrub the question from their various surveys? I’ll let you know when they decide.

Micro Focus HY Pre-tax Loss Narrows; Backs FY Revenue Guidance

Micro Focus International plc (MCRO.L, MFGP), the international software product group, reported that its loss before tax for the six months ended 30 April 2019 narrowed to $99.6 million from $100.9 million last year.

Loss from continuing operations was $78.3 million, compared to profit of $600.0 million in the previous year.

Micro said, “During the period, we completed the sale of the SUSE business and as a result returned $1,800.0m to shareholders. This transaction is an excellent proof point of the effectiveness of Micro Focus’ portfolio management approach.”

Profit attributable to equity shareholders of the parent for the six months ended 30 April 2019 surged to $1.40 billion from $620 million last year. Earnings per share grew to 322.74 cents from 136.90 cents in the prior year.

Adjusted earnings per share improved to 92.69 cents from 86.62 cents last year.

But, revenues for the period decreased to $1.66 billion from $1.79 billion in the previous year.

The company announced that the interim dividend will be 58.33 cents. The dividend will be paid on 30 September 2019 to shareholders on the register as at 6 September 2019.

The company reiterated its constant currency revenue guidance for the 12 months to 31 October 2019 of minus 4% to minus 6% compared to the 12 months ended 31 October 2018.

Dow futures lower ahead as investors await Powell's speech

  • The big focus this Tuesday is on the Federal Reserve.
  • Jay Powell will give a testimony at 8:45 a.m. ET.
  • This comes just after a stronger-than-expected jobs report raised questions about the central bank's rate policy.

U.S. stock index futures were lower on Tuesday morning, as traders waited to hear from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell.

At around 03:35 a.m. ET, Dow futures slipped 93 points, indicating a negative open of more than 100 points. Futures on the S&P and Nasdaq were also lower.

Wall Street closed lower on Monday on the back of negative sentiment in the tech sector. However, the big focus this Tuesday is on the Federal Reserve. Jerome Powell will give a testimony at 8:45 a.m. ET. This comes just after a stronger-than-expected jobs report raised questions about the central bank's rate policy.

Traders have priced in a 100% probability of a Fed rate cut in July, according to the CME Group's FedWatch tool. However, expectations for a more aggressive cut were tempered by the jobs data released Friday.

Furthermore, a new NFIB survey will be out at 6 a.m. and a new JOLTS report will be released at 10 a.m. ET.

In the corporate world, PepsiCo and Levi Strauss will update investors on their latest performance.

Ocado Group H1 Loss Widens, Revenue Up; Sees FY EBITDA In Line With Market

Online supermarket Ocado Group plc (OCDO.L) reported Tuesday that its first-half loss before tax was 142.8 million pounds, wider than last year’s loss of 13.6 million pounds.

The statutory results were impacted by Andover fire. The latest results included exceptional loss of 99 million pounds mainly reflecting the net cost associated with the write-down of Andover CFC and associated assets.

Adjusted loss before tax for the first half was 43 million pounds, compared to loss of 12.9 million pounds a year ago. The company said the results were adjusted to remove Fabled which is now an asset held for sale.

Group EBITDA was 18.1 million pounds, down from 34.3 million pounds last year. Adjusted Group EBITDA was 18.7 million pounds, down 46.3 percent from prior year’s 34.8 million pounds.

The company said its trading were in line with expectations.

Group revenue increased to 882.3 million pounds from prior year’s 795.3 million pounds. Adjusted revenue grew 10.5 percent to 874.0 million pounds from last year’s 791.2 million pounds.

Looking ahead, the company expects the EBITDA performance for fiscal 2019, adjusted for the impact of the Andover fire and share incentives, is in line with market expectations.

“We continue to be confident that Ocado Retail will achieve retail revenue growth of 10-15% in the balance of the 2019 financial year, despite the impact of the Andover fire, given strong underlying demand growth and our ability to utilise additional capacity in CFC4,” the company said.

Partnership leads to $205M deal for 520 Fifth Avenue

A partnership led by Rabina Properties paid $205 million to take control of the long-stalled site at 520 Fifth Ave. at East 43rd Street, according to city records.

As we first reported last week, a Rabina-led joint venture was taking over the driver’s seat from previous owners Ceruzzi Properties and SMI. However, terms weren’t available at the time.

The $205 million price doesn’t reflect the full value of the site, as it was described by sources as a partnership restructuring and recapitalization. Ceruzzi and SMI are expected to remain part of the development team.

A new mortgage of just under $110 million with Bank OZK, previously Bank of the Ozarks, was also recorded. It replaced an earlier, $232 million loan to Mack Real Estate that was in default but paid off as part of the purchase transaction.

The project at one of the city’s most valuable corners had stalled partly as a result of partner Louis Ceruzzi’s death in September 2017.

The broker, Marcus & Millichap’s Eric M. Anton, declined to comment.