Diamonds and Dogs


Abbott Labs (ABT) is performing well up 4% to all-time highs after beating earnings and sales estimates while also guiding full year 2018 estimates in line with consensus. The company issues upside guidance for the first quarter. Abbott repaid $4.0 billion of debt and anticipates additional debt repayments throughout 2018. The company also approved an increase to the quarterly dividend to $0.280 per share from $0.265 per share. As one analyst put it, "Abbott did not disappoint and the fourth-quarter print was impressive across the board."

UAL is stirring the airlines hornet nest. Airliner, UAL (UAL) report strong earnings as revenues rose 4.3% year over year to $9.44 billion, but the stock is down 10% as the United plans to grow capacity, or the number of seats it flies, by 4 percent to 6 percent each year through 2020. Adding capacity always scares shareholders because it can lead to higher labor, fuel and operational costs and can spark fare wars. Some analysts fretted about how and when the plan would expand the airline's margins. Delta and American are down over 5% while Southwest is down 3%.

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