MFSF = Northwest Bancshares (NASDAQ: NWBI) and MutualFirst Financial, Inc., (NASDAQ: MFSF) jointly announced the signing of a definitive merger agreement pursuant to which Northwest will acquire MutualFirst, the Muncie, Indiana-based holding company and parent of MutualBank, in an all-stock transaction valued at $39.89 per share (based on Northwest’s 15-day volume weighted average closing stock price ending on October 23, 2019), or approximately $346 million in the aggregate.

AR = Argonaut Gold (TSX: AR) is pleased to announce that the previously announced illegal blockade at the El Castillo mine has been lifted and operations at the mine have resumed. The Company has reached a tentative agreement with the Atotonilco ejido that is scheduled to be voted on by the Atotonilco ejido on November 11, 2019. As part of the agreement, the Atotonilco ejido agreed to lift the blockade pending ratification. Argonaut reaffirms its commitment to treat all local ejidos fairly and work with its local communities in an open and transparent manner for the benefit of all stakeholders.

MOH = Molina Healthcare said in a regulatory filing earlier: “Late in the day on October 29, 2019, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, or HHSC, notified our Texas health plan, Molina Healthcare of Texas, Inc., that HHSC intends to award contracts to Molina Healthcare of Texas, Inc. for the STAR+PLUS program in the Hidalgo and North East service areas. The awards will be for an initial contract term of 3 years, and anticipated to have an operational effective date of September 1, 2020. STAR+PLUS is a Texas Medicaid Managed Care program integrating the delivery of Acute Care services and Long-Term Services and Supports for people who are age 65 or older, blind, or disabled. Currently, our Texas health plan services the Bexar, Dallas, El Paso, Harris, Hidalgo, and Jefferson service areas, with total membership of approximately 86,000 enrollees. Under the existing STAR+PLUS contract, the premium revenue for this program amounted to approximately $1.2B for the nine months ended September 30, 2019. The company is seeking to understand the basis for HHSC’s selection of intended contract awards. The company does not expect this matter to affect its earnings during fiscal year 2019.”

SAIA = Saia, Inc. (Nasdaq: SAIA), a leading transportation provider offering multi-regional less-than-truckload (LTL), non-asset truckload, expedited and logistics services, today reported third quarter 2019 financial results. Diluted earnings per share in the quarter were $1.25 compared to $1.07 in the third quarter of 2018. 

Third Quarter 2019 Compared to Third Quarter 2018 Results

  • Revenue was $468.9 million, a 10.2% increase
  • Operating income was $45.4 million, a 17.2% increase
  • Operating ratio improved to 90.3 from 90.9
  • LTL shipments per workday rose 7.3%
  • LTL tonnage per workday increased by 3.0%
  • LTL revenue per hundredweight increased 5.3%
  • LTL revenue per shipment rose 1.1% to $235.87

“The record third quarter results at Saia were achieved even as the Company opened three new terminals and relocated another all in the back half of September, as we continue to focus on our long-term growth strategy,” said Saia President and Chief Operating Officer, Fritz Holzgrefe.  “While I was generally pleased with our execution in the third quarter, the challenge created by the new terminal openings and relocations late in the quarter, and continuing negative weight per shipment trends provided a larger than expected headwind to results,” continued Holzgrefe.  “Saia’s LTL yield increased year-over-year for the 37th consecutive quarter and the market remains rational in our view,” Holzgrefe concluded. 

“This year has been by far our most active year in terms of facility openings since our organic expansion began in 2017,” stated Saia Chief Executive Officer, Rick O’Dell.  “We have opened eight new terminals in the Northeast including two in October and we have relocated three others in major markets.  Additionally, in early October we opened a new terminal in Long Beach, California,” continued O’Dell.  “Long Beach is the second busiest container port in the country and this 14th terminal in California positions us well for continued growth.  The Long Beach terminal opening highlights our long-term opportunity to open new terminals in existing markets and get closer to customers, provide better service and ultimately gain market share,” continued O’Dell.  “We plan to relocate two additional terminals before year-end,” concluded O’Dell.

CBIZ = Reports Q3 revenue $239.79M, consensus $234.48M. Same-unit revenue increased by $12.4M, or 5.6%, for the quarter, compared with the same period a year ago. Jerry Grisko, CBIZ president and CEO, said, “We are very pleased to report third-quarter revenue growth of 6.9% and year-to-date growth of 3.1%, which were consistent with our expectations to experience robust second-half revenue growth this year, even compared with our historically strong results recorded in the second half of last year. Same-unit revenue growth of 5.6% in the third quarter was a result of continuous demand for the core services offered through both our Financial Services and Benefits & Insurance segments and was aided by notable contributions from a number of our more transactional, project oriented businesses. We successfully leveraged this growth into higher margins and reported a 33.3% increase in earnings per share for the third quarter and a 16.2% increase year to date.”

W = Wayfair shares “look increasingly binary” heading into Thursday’s Q3 earnings print, as expectations for sales growth suggest Wayfair has slowed to 35%, Piper Jaffray analyst Peter Keith tells investors in a pre-earnings research note. While the analyst agrees with the modest sales deceleration, he believes tariff-driven price increases are playing a role, and his supplier discussions “remain quite positive” about Wayfair with none noting any sales slowdown or change in trend. Both the stock’s valuation and short interest are at levels from May of 2018 and February 2019 that subsequently saw shares rally by an average of 50% over three months following the corresponding earnings announcement, Keith points out. He maintains an Overweight rating on Wayfair with a $175 price target.

IPHI = Needham analyst N. Quinn Bolton raised his price target on Inphi to $72 and kept his Buy rating after its Q3 earnings beat, saying the company’s revenues grew thanks to the rising demand for COLORZ from its “lead customer’s new DC builds” and the ramp of its multiple M200 customers worldwide. The analyst also believes that Inphi’s Q4 Porrima shipments will ramp up as its 100G single-lambda PAM4 DSP platform is “already in pilot runs”.

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