Thursday, July 13, 2006

Notablecalls - Paperstand

Accordint o The Wall Street Journal, Walt Disney (DIS) is considering several hundred job cuts as part of a restructuring of its movie studio. After a tough run at the box office and the acquisition of Pixar, Disney has said it is shifting its movie strategy to make more Disney-branded movies that appeal to a broad audience. Disney plans to make about 8 Disney-branded movies a year, compared to a previous 5 or 6, as well as one Pixar movie and one Disney Animation movie. The studio meanwhile plans to dramatically scale back its Touchstone label, which was created to make more adult fare, to a couple of movies a year, from a previous 6 or 7.

Notablecalls: I suspect the news may prove to be positive for Dreamworks Animation (NYSE:DWA) a competitor to Pixar.

According to the Barron's Online, Tom Kartsotis, founder and Chmn of Fossil (FOSL), plunked down $7.5m to purchase 428K shares between June 13 and July 11. The shares were priced from $16.81-18.

Barron' Online discusses JC Penney (JCP), which shares have jumped more than 530% hitting bottom more than 5 years ago. But, according to the article, that might be as good as it gets for JC Penney's stock for a while. With a slowdown in consumer spending on the horizon and challenges facing the dept-store giant as its tries to pull off an aggressive expansion, there's a good chance that the stock could languish. "There are better places to put money in the retail sector," says Jonathan Armitage, of Schroder Investment Mgmt. "The co has done an excellent job and their strategy is smart. But things are going to get tougher."

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