Wednesday headlines include: Weak guidance from Accenture, Amazon planning a larger hardware business, Walgreen exploring the sale of its Infusion business, General Motors expecting increasing sales in China and reports on fraudulent usage of cards compromised in the Home Depot hacking.
Consulting firm Accenture (ACN) said it expects first-quarter revenue of $7.55 billion to $7.80 billion. Analysts had been forecasting $7.8 billion for the period. For the full year, Accenture expects to earn between $4.74 and $4.88 per share, which compares to $4.91 per share expected by analysts.
Online retailer Amazon (AMZN) apparently undaunted by soft sales of its Fire phone, plans to expand its hardware unit by at least 27 percent over the next five years. The company plans to test smart home devices, including a gadget that could allow consumers to order supplies with the press of a single button.
Drugstore chain Walgreen (WAG) is reportedly considering the sale of a majority stake Walgreens Infusion Services. Media reports say the deal could value the unit at about $1.5 billion. The company is reportedly considering the sale of a little more than half of the business, which has non-GAAP earnings of $105 million on an annual basis.
Automaker General Motors (GM) expects to sell more than 3 million vehicles in China in 2014 according to Matthew Tsien, the company's China president. Tsien also said he expects sales of the company's premium brand to grow by 40 percent.
The Wall Street Journal is reporting this morning that fraudulent transactions have been linked to cards stolen in the recent hacking attack at Home Depot (HD). The newspaper says stolen cards have been used to buy prepaid cards, electronics and groceries.