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Investors slim down Weight Watchers, J.C. Penney collapses as Monster Energy explodes

Weight Watchers International (WTW) shares are getting hit so hard that I'm resisting the urge to use a loss-related pun. Shares are off 30% after the weight loss club issued a stunning profit warning this morning. This is pretty bad, folks. Weight Watchers said meeting subscribers fell 13.3% for the quarter which was actually better than the 16.7% decline in online membership. For this year management says it will earn anywhere from 40 to 70 cents. Analysts were looking for $1.43. This is a mess. Lots of debt, no grip on the core business and looking very much like a typewriter ribbon manufacturer at this point.

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J.C. Penney (JCP) shares are getting smacked around after the left-for-dead department store reported a big goose egg for the fourth quarter. Analysts had been looking for 11 cents a share. Also giving bulls cause for pause was a forecast for "flat" cash flow this year. When you're a cash strapped retailer with a lot of debt from your last CEO cash flow is your lifeblood. At this point management has pulled the chain out of its death spiral but analysts are left asking whether or not that's all there is. For now at least the answer seems to be "yup, that's pretty much it".

Monster Energy (MNST) gulped down a monster quarter which is pushing the stock up over 13%. Net income jumped 65% to $125 million. Sales of $605 million increased 12%, well ahead of estimates. The maker of drinks, including Monster Energy, is seeing solid growth most notably in Japan which is becoming the company's largest international market. Also notable is Monster's expanding partnership with Coca-Cola (KO).

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