) debt ratings under review. Earlier CNA posted 25 cents vs. 14 cents second-quarter EPS from continuing operations despite a $166 million drop in net written premiums. S&P reiterates hold.
Abercrombie & Fitch (ANF
) posted 11% lower July same-store sales, and 6% higher total sales. A&F expects to exceed the current 33 cents second-quarter EPS consensus estimate. S&P keeps hold.
Hartford Financial Services (HIG
) posted $1.23 second-quarter earnings per share (adjusted for one-time items). Hartford raised the 2003 earnings per share guidance to $4.95-$5.20 (excluding asbestos). Banc of America raised the target to $61. S&P reiterates buy.
XM Satellite Radio (XMSR
) posted a $1.38 second-quarter loss. It says the group of insurers denied claims relating to power degradation trends experienced by its satellites. Merrill says the stock price weakness is overdone.
) posted $1.02 vs. 84 cents second-quarter earnings per share from continuing operations as $250.7 million in investment gains, compared with $117.9 million in losses in the second-quarter of of 2002, offset a 8.6% net revenue decline.
Best Buy (BBY
) raised the 27 cents to 32 cents second-quarter earnings per share from continuing operations guidance to 37 cents to 42 cents, and raised the $2.17 to $2.22 fiscal 2004 guidance to $2.27 to $2.32.
Tenet Healthcare (THC
) climbed despite posting a 42-cent second-quarter loss per share, vs. 48 cents earnings per share a year ago. On Wednesday, Tenet agreed to pay the government $54 million in connection with an investigation regarding alleged unnecessary cardiac procedures performed at Redding Medical Center in California. The hospital operator recorded charges of 69 cents a share, including impairment and restructuring charges, legal fees, and costs related to retirement plan and malpractice liabilities. Revenue slipped 1.5% to $3.38 billion.
Barr Laboratories (BRL
) posted 53 cent vs. 66 cents fourth-quarter EPS (GAAP) despite a 44% total revenue rise.
) delayed the release of fiscal 2003 results as independent accountants review accounting treatment under FASBS 133 of certain interest-rate swaps entered into prior to 2001, which were used to hedge variable cash flows on credit enhancement assets.
Wachovia upgraded EMC (EMC
) to outperform from market perform. Bear Stearns upgraded to outperform from peer perform. On Wednesday the data-storage maker said it sees a slight upturn in information-technology spending, and reaffirmed the third-quarter guidance.
) posted a 4.6% rise in same-store sales rose in July, and raised its earnings outlook for the second quarter.
American Eagle Outfitters (AEOS
) posted 11% lower July same-store sales, and slightly higher total sales. American Eagle expects 10 cents to 11 cents second-quarter earnings per share, within the previous 10 cents to 12 cents guidance. Prudential reportedly downgraded to hold from buy.
Dean Foods (DF
) posted 54 cents vs. 48 cents second-quarter earnings per share despite a 3.2% net sales decline. It sees $2.03 to $2.07 in 2003 earnings per share, down from the previous $2.07 to $2.11 guidance.
Sharper Image (SHRP
) posted 15% higher same-store sales, and 25% higher total company sales. The retailer reconfirmed the 2 cents to 3 cents second-quarter earnings per share guidance.
Citizens Communication (CZN
) posted 12 cents second-quarter earnings per share, vs. a 15-cent loss, as lower operating expenses and other costs offset a 3% revenue decline.
Children's Place (PLCE
) posted 3% higher second-quarter same-store sales, 24% higher total sales, and expects to post a 35-cents second-quarter loss.
Hot Topic (HOTT
) posted 8.7% higher July same-store sales, and 28% higher total sales. First Albany reportedly upgraded to buy.
Dutch insurer Aegon (AEG
) posted 30 euro cents vs. 10 euro cents second-quarter earnings per share despite an 11% total revenue decline. Ageon declined to give 2003 guidance due to uncertain market conditions.
Pier 1 Imports (PIR
) posted 4.1% lower July same-store sales, 4.9% higher sales. The home products retailer sees August same-store sales down 3% to 6%, and 20 cents to 23 cents second-quarter earnings per share.