Markets & Finance

Toys 'R' Us Climbs


Toys 'R' Us (TOY) posted a 5-cent second-quarter loss vs. an 8-cent loss on a 3.3% total sales rise. The toy store chain remains comfortable with the $1.15 fiscal 2004 earnings per share guidance (excluding the impact of an accounting issue). S&P reiterates accumulate.

SPS Technologies (ST), which makes specialty metals and other industrial products, agreed to be acquired by Precision Castparts (PCP) for $43.78 per SPS Technologies share for a total, including after-tax option payments, of $575 million.

Lowe's (LOW) posted second-quarter earnings per share of 75 cents, vs, 59 cents, beating analysts' average estimate of 69 cents a share. The home improvement retailer cited improved weather and continued strength in every product category, including big-ticket items. Sales rose 17% to $8.77 billion. Lowe's expects $2.24 to $2.27 earnings per share in 2003. S&P reiterates accumulate. Lehman raised its estimates and price target.

High-Tech Strategist's Fred Hickey says Advanced Micro Devices' (AMD) offerings are generating buzz in the industry, according to Barron's.

Thomas Weisel upgraded Tektronix (TEK) to outperform from peer perform.

Morgan Keegan downgraded OSI Systems (OSIS) to market perform from outperform.

Access Anytime (AABC) says its acquisition by First National Bank Holding has been terminated.

Investigators are focused on problems with transmission lines and a generating plant operated by FirstEnergy (FE), which is seen as a possible source of last week's massive blackout, according to the Wall Street Journal. Merrill downgraded. S&P keeps hold.

First Albany initiates coverage of Quanta Services (PWR) with buy and a $10 target.

BrightPoint 's (CELL) Brightpoint Asia unit is in a pact to supply Reliance with Nokia handsets for use on the Reliance Infocomm nationwide CDMA wireless network in India.

J.P. Morgan upgraded Devry (DV) to neutral from underweight.

NetScreen Technologies (NSCN) will provide firewall and security solutions to China Unicom for its Internet Data and Managed Services Centers.

Planar Systems (PLNR), a maker of flat-panel electronic display systems, raised its business outlook to $1.25 fiscal 2004 earnings per share on $275 million sales.

Integrated Defense (IDE) agreed to be acquired by DRS Technologies (DRS) for $550 millon including debt assumption. Terms: 0.1875 DRS Technologies share, and $12.25 in cash per per Integrated Defense share.

Catalina Marketing (POS) delayed the filing of its quarterly 10-Q for the first quarter due to a previously announced review of certain revenue recognition timing matters within its Catalina Health Resource business unit and the base business.

Millennium Pharmaceuticals (MLNM) and Abbott Laboratories (ABT) announced they are no longer in an alliance to discover, develop, and commercialize compounds in the fields of Type 2 diabetes and obesity.

Patterson Dental (PDCO) will acquire AbilityOne Products Corp. for $575 million.

Jarden (JAH), a maker of consumer and plastic products, will acquire Lehigh Consumer Products for $155 million in cash. The deal is expected to be accretive to earnings in 2003.

Health Canada approved Bayer 's (BAY) Gamunex, Immune Globulin Intravenous, 10%, for the treatment of idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura and other conditions.


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