Markets & Finance

Home Depot, Wal-Mart Post Higher Earnings


From Standard & Poor's Equity Research

Home Depot (HD) posts 70 cents vs. 57 cents first quarter earnings per share (EPS) on a 13% sales rise.

Wal-Mart Stores (WMT) posts 63 cents vs. 58 cents first quarter EPS on a 3.8% rise in total US same-store sales and a 12% total sales rise. It sees second quarter U.S. same-store sales up 2% to 4% and 70 cents to 74 cents EPS. The retailer continues to see $2.88 to $2.95 fiscal year 2007 EPS.

Staples (SPLS) posts 25 cents vs. 20 cents first quarter EPS on an 8.7% total sales rise. It sees low double-digit sales growth in the second quarter and 15% to 20% EPS growth. It also expects fiscal year 2007 EPS to be at the high end of its 15% to 20% growth forecast.

Creative Technology (CREAF) requests that the US International Trade Commission investigate whether Apple (AAPL) infringed Creative Technology's Zen patent through importation and sale of iPods into the US. It seeks an injunction and increased damages.

Cognos (COGN) delays filing its Annual Report on Form 10-K for fiscal year 2006 (ending February) because of an ongoing review by the Securities Exchange Commission that may impact the manner in which the company allocates revenue.

Fannie Mae (FNM) says the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight intends to release a final report of its special examination at 10:00 a.m. on May 23rd. As a result, Fannie Mae temporarily suspends the public offering of Benchmark and medium-term debt securities until 5/23.

Jo-Ann Stores (JAS) posts 28 cents first quarter loss vs. 18 cents EPS on 3.9% lower same-store sales and 1% higher total sales. It says sales growth and its gross margin rate remain challenged due to soft industry conditions and lower customer demand.

Viisage Technology (VISG) posts 7 cents first quarter loss vs. 9 cents loss on a 39% revenue rise. It sees $120 million to $125 million second half revenue.

Western Digital (WDC) appoints John Coyne president and COO, replacing Arif Shakeel, who remains CEO.

Lincare Holdings (LNCR) resolves several ongoing investigations by the Office of Inspector General and/or the U.S. Department of Justice. The combined settlements provide for Lincare to pay a total of $12 million to the government without any admission of wrongdoing by Lincare.

Saks (SKS) posts 60 cents (including 54 cents item) vs. 11 cents first quarter EPS on 1.9% lower same-store sales and 33% lower total sales. It notes that total sales primarily reflect the sale of Proffitt's/McRae's and NDSG business.

Fossil (FOSL) posts 14 cents vs. 32 cents first quarter EPS despite a 14% sales rise. It sees 12 cents second quarter EPS. It also raises its $1.05 2006 EPS forecast to $1.07.

Carnival(CUK) sees 43 cents to 45 cents second quarter EPS and $2.65 to $2.75 fiscal year 2006 EPS, roughly in line with 2005's $2.70. It cites lower revenue yields, higher fuel costs, and a change in accounting.

Ediets.com (DIET) agrees to acquire Nutrio.com for $8.5 million in cash, plus performance-based earnout payments of up to $2.5 million through early 2008.

Deere & Co. (DE) posts $2.17 vs. $2.41 second quarter EPS from continuing operations despite a 1.9% sales rise.


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