Markets & Finance

On the Move: Hugo Boss, Vivendi, AXA


Plus:Ferrovial, Corus, Novo Nordisk and other European companies making headlines Wednesday

From Standard & Poor's European MarketScope

United Kingdom

VODAFONE (VOD) was up £0.01 to £1.48. The company posted third quarter organic growth of 6.1% in proportionate mobile revenue; net mobile additions 8.7 million; total customer base 198.6 million.

BSKYB was up £0.01 to £5.47. The company posted first half revenue of £2.220 billion, +10%; pretax profit £356 million; adjusted gross margin 63%; EBITDA was £486 million; basic EPS 14p, adjusted EPS 11.3p; interim DPS 6.6p, +20%; second quarter new customer additions 432,000; second quarter HD subscribers were doubled to 184,000.

ANTOFAGASTA was up £0.05 to £4.66. The company said annual copper production for 2006 reached 465,500 tons, above the original forecast for the year of 441,500 tons and Molybdenum production at Los Pelambres increased by 13% to 9,800 tons.

France

TOTAL (TOT) was down €0.05 to €51.80. Oil eased, but held above US$56 a barrel ahead of US data expected to show a fall in fuel stocks during a cold snap, though higher crude inventories.

AXA (AXA) was down €0.24 to €32.34. The company's unions voted against a plan by the company to move 1,000 jobs to Morocco, Les Echos said, citing union members. The company aimed to save €100 million in costs by 2010 by moving some jobs to India and to Morocco.

VIVENDI UNIVERSAL (V) was down €0.68 to €31.58. The company posted fiscal 2006 sales of €20.044 billion vs. 19.484 in fiscal 2005; fourth quarter 2006 sales of €5.545 billion vs. €5.479 billion in the fourth quarter of 2005.

NEXANS was up €4.95 to €104.70. The company posted fiscal 2006 sales of €7.489 billion; sales at constant metal prices of €4.442 billion (+8.2% organic growth); EBITDA of €355 million, +26%.

Germany

HEIDELDRUECK was down €1.40 to €32.35. Third quarter EBIT fell short of expectations - coming in 16.7% higher year-over-year at €84 million. A consensus view was for €94 million quarterly operating earnings.

NORDDEUTSCHE was up €0.58 to €22.43. A rise in first quarter sales/earnings buoyed the stock coming in at €39 million, up 77% year-over-year.

HUGO BOSS was up €0.78 to €40.71. The company reported 2006 sales up 14% year-over-year at €1.5 billion and net profit 19% higher at €129 million. It saw the positive and earnings trend continuing this year. Merck Finck continued to see the company as one of the strongest equity stories in the consumer universe and, therefore, reiterated its buy rating.

Nordics

NOVO NORDISK (NVO) was up DKK22.00 to DKK493.00. Fiscal 2006 operating profit came in at DKK9.119 billion up 13%, measured in local currencies up about 15% vs. the consensus forecast of DKK9.19 billion up 13.6%.

FORTUM was down €0.66 to €21.12. Fourth quarter operating profit declined to €440 million vs. €460 million year-over-year and vs. a consensus forecast of €461 million. The company said it is well positioned for 2007.

Netherlands

SBM OFFSHORE was up €1.62 to €27.04. The company reported 2006 prelim net profit of US$216 million. Turnover rose to US$1.994 billion. Approximately 70% of sales are related to turnkey and services projects.

CORUS (CGA) was up €0.55 to €9.07. Tata won the auction with a US$12 billion offer. The Indian group is set to become the world's No. 5 steelmaker. The price tag reportedly valued the company at 7.6 times 2006 EBITDA.

Spain

BBVA was down €0.17 to €19.05. The company delivered 2006 net profit up 24.4% to €4.74 billion, with net interest income coming in ahead of forecasts at €8.37 billion.

FERROVIAL was up €0.25 to €76.75. The company's BAA will pledge at least US$15.7 billion of assets from Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted airports to back a sale of bonds, according to El Pais.

Switzerland

JULIUS BAER was down CHF2.40 to CHF149.10. In Dresdner Kleinwort's view, the balance of risk and reward on results day is biased to the downside, owing primarily to revenue and cost risks in private banking.

Rocio Opazo-Aniotz, Claudia Perotti, Michael Sanderson, Emma Stevenson, Mariella Mongio, Pawan Girglani, Guarav Panchal, Julien Manrique, Isabell Witt, Sara Oscarsson, Ben Marino, John West

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