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Gerard Klauer reportedly upgraded Merck (MRK
) to buy from neutral.
Compania Anonima Telephone (VNT
) is seen higher as Venezuela's Hugo Chavez is ousted by the military. The political situation is seen as easing, helping all Venezuelan investments.
) posted a $0.01 Q1 loss vs. $0.10 EPS on 5% lower sales, and says favorable quarterly comps may not be evident until the last half of year.
Concord Communications (CCRD
) posted $0.02 Q1 EPS from operations vs. a $0.19 loss (pro forma, 38% tax rate) on a 19% revenue rise, and raised the Q2 EPS and revenue guidance. Janney Montgomery reiterates buy.
Legg Mason intitiated coverage of PayPal (PYPL
) with strong buy.
IBM Corp. (IBM
) rebounded Friday as the SEC confirmed it had opened and closed a preliminary inquiry into IBM, without action. S&P reiterates accumulate on the stock.
Acclaim Entertainment (AKLM
) reported second quarter EPS of $0.06, vs. $0.01, on a 75% revenue rise. The company maintains its $0.39 non-taxed fiscal year 2002 EPS estimate on $308 million in revenues, and its $0.67 fiscal year 2003 EPS forecast on $369 million in revenues.
) reported breakeven third quarter earnings, vs. $0.19 EPS (adjusted), on 37% lower revenue. The company expects recent cost cuts and streamlining of operations to put the company back on a growth track in the fourth quarter. CIBC World reiterates buy.
HC Wainwright upgrades Veritas Software (VRTS
) to strong buy from buy.
ICN Pharmaceutical (ICN
) shares fell after the IPO of the minority interest of the company's Ribapharm (RNA
) unit was priced today at $10.00, below the expected range of $13-$15.
Mercury Interactive (MERQ
) posted better than expected $0.14 vs. $0.18 Q1 EPS from operations on flat revenue. CS First Boston raised estimates and reiterates strong buy. S&P maintains hold.
) reported $0.01 first quarter EPS, vs. $0.08 loss per share (pro forma) from operations, as lower operating costs offset a 27% revenue decline. Pacific Crest reportedly downgrades to market perform from buy, while CSFB maintains buy.
RSA Security (RSAS
) posted a $0.11 Q1 loss from core operations vs. $0.17 EPS on a 27% revenue decline. RSA sees a Q2 loss from core operations of no greater than $0.04-$0.06. S&P cut estimates, keeps avoid.
Banc of America downgraded GE (GE
) to buy from strong buy, and cut the target to $36 from $45. On Thursday, the company posted $0.35 first quarter EPS before charges on flat revenue.
) posted $0.04 Q1 EPS vs. a $0.15 loss on a 43% revenue rise.
) posted $0.12 vs. $0.21 Q1 EPS on 30% lower revenue, and says a 35% sequential increase in licensing revenue exceeded expectations. Robertson Stephens raised estimates.
Microchip Technology (MCHP
) set a 3-for-2 stock split. Separately, S&P lowered the technology sector to market weight from overweight, citing ambitious valuations and a bearish near-term technical outlook. S&P still likes Microchip and Intuit.
Juniper Networks (JNPR
) posted breakeven Q1 vs. $0.25 EPS on a 63% revenue decline. S&P says the company forecast Q2 EPS, and revenue flat with Q1. S&P maintains hold.