Bloomberg News

Amedisys, Gen-Probe, JPMorgan, Starbucks: U.S. Equity Movers

June 06, 2011

June 6 (Bloomberg) -- Shares of the following companies are having unusual moves in U.S. trading. Stock symbols are in parentheses and prices are as of 1:45 p.m. in New York.

Financial shares declined as Rochdale Securities LLC’s Richard Bove cut his rating on Wells Fargo & Co. (WFC US), the largest U.S. home lender, to “sell” from “neutral,” citing poor economic environment, weak housing prices, slowing manufacturing indicators and negative regulatory environment. Wells Fargo slid 2.2 percent to $26.26. Bank of America Corp. (BAC US) fell 4 percent to $10.83. JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM US) declined 2.5 percent to $40.53. Regions Financial Corp. (RF US) retreated 4.9 percent to $6.05.

U.S. shares of companies that do business in Peru declined after former army rebel Ollanta Humala claimed victory in the country’s presidential runoff and sparked concern that he will seek greater state control of the economy.

Southern Copper Corp. (SCCO US), Peru’s biggest producer of the metal, fell 11 percent to $30.78. Credicorp Ltd. (BAP US) dropped 19 percent to $82.55. Peru’s largest financial services company was cut to “underperform” from “outperform” by Raymond James Financial Inc., which cited “political uncertainties.”

Oil related shares slid after crude for July delivery fell to a two week low on concern that fuel demand is faltering along with economic growth. Nabors Industries Ltd. (NBR US) fell 5.5 percent to $25.95. Valero Energy Corp. (VLO US), slipped 4.7 percent to $25.10. Tesoro Corp. (TSO US) declined 4.7 percent to $21.62.

Amedisys Inc. (AMED US) declined 7.4 percent to $27.98, the lowest price since Dec. 17. CRT Capital Group LLC analyst Sheryl Skolnick cut her 2011 adjusted earnings estimates for the largest U.S. home-nursing provider, as the current average analysts’ forecast doesn’t reflect the negative impact from the physical face-to-face requirement.

Exelixis Inc. (EXEL US) fell the most in the Russell 2000 Index, slumping 20 percent to $8.69. The data from a clinical trial of the experimental cancer drug, cabozantinib, showed six patients, or 1 percent of the total enrolled, died of treatment- related adverse events, a result that “could complicate” regulatory strategy, George Farmer, an analyst with Canaccord Genuity, wrote in a note.

Gen-Probe Inc. (GPRO US) had the biggest retreat in the Russell 1000 Index, sinking 13 percent to $71.41. Novartis AG (NOVN VX) may decide not to bid for the medical-test maker, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Harley-Davidson Inc. (HOG US) rose the most in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index, climbing 2.8 percent to $36.86. The largest motorcycle manufacturer in the U.S. posted “solid” sales in April and May even amid weather disruptions and an economic slowdown, and investors should buy the stock on weakness, Wells Fargo & Co. said in a note.

Lorillard Inc. (LO US) declined 7.3 percent, the most since September 2008, to $99.90. The cigarette maker was cut to “equal-weight” from “overweight” at Morgan Stanley, which cited valuation and renewed uncertainty related to the Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee. The Greensboro, North Carolina-based company was cut to “neutral” from “buy” at Davenport & Co.

Merge Healthcare Inc. (MRGE US) dropped 5.8 percent to $5.33, the lowest price since May 2. The medical imaging provider is buying Ophthalmic Imaging Systems, a provider of digital imaging and informatics solutions for ophthalmology, for $30.3 million in stock.

Progress Software Corp. (PRGS US) slid 12 percent, the most since November 2000, to $22.67. The maker of business programs said that, excluding some items, it earned 38 cents a share at most in the second quarter, trailing its previous forecast of at least 41 cents a share.

Sino-Forest Corp. (SNOFF US) rallied 12 percent, the most since May 2009, to $6.05. The Chinese operator of timber plantations said Muddy Waters Research’ report is inaccurate and an independent committee has appointed legal counsel. Sino- Forest plunged 71 percent in two days last week after Muddy Waters said the company overstated timberland holdings and production.

United Therapeutics Corp. (UTHR US) slumped 5.9 percent, the most since July 28, to $59. The oral version of the Remodulin drug to help patients with a lung disorder walk farther, while meeting the main goal of a late-stage study, missed analysts’ expectations, according to Collins Stewart LLC. Patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension who took the medicine for 12 weeks walked about 23 meters farther over six minutes than those getting placebo, the company said. Analysts expected an improvement of 30 meters, Collins Stewart said in a note to clients.

--With assistance from Lu Wang, Inyoung Hwang, Rita Nazareth, Joanna Ossinger and Elizabeth Ody in New York. Editors: Joanna Ossinger, Stephen Kleege

To contact the reporter on this story: Nikolaj Gammeltoft in New York at ngammeltoft@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Regan at mregan12@bloomberg.net


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