Markets & Finance

Movers: Wachovia, Fannie Mae, Priceline.com, Merck


Friday's stocks in the news

From Standard & Poor's Equity ResearchWachovia (WB) says in an 8-K filing that says due to October market deterioration, ABS CDOs in its portfolio experienced further declines in value in October by an amount it estimates to be about $1.1 billion pretax. Separately, expects to record loan loss provision in the fourth quarter by $500-$600 million in excess of charge-offs for the fourth quarter.

Fannie Mae (FNM) reports $1.17 EPS for the first three quarters of 2007, vs. $3.16 for the corresponding year-ago period. It expects market forces that affected results in its first three quarters of 2007 to continue through end of the year.

Qualcomm (QCOM) posts $0.67, vs. $0.36 a year ago, fourth quarter EPS on 15% revenue rise, tax gain. It posts $0.54 fourth quarter pro forma EPS excluding Qualcomm Strategic Initiatives (QSI) segment, other items. It sees lower-than-expected fiscal year 2008 pro forma EPS of $2.03-$2.09 on revenue of $9.5-$9.9 billion.

Priceline.com (PCLN) posts $1.58 vs. $0.72 third quarter pro forma EPS on 34% revenue rise. It sees fourth quarter pro forma EPS of $0.77-$0.85 on revenue growth of 22%-26%, overall gross travel bookings growth of about 50%. Piper Jaffray raises estimates; ups target to $141; it reiterates PCLN as Top Pick.

Merck & Co. (MRK) says in a deal to resolve U.S. Vioxx product liability lawsuits, it will pay fixed amount of $4.85 billion into settlement fund for qualifying claims that enter into resolution process. It says this is not a class-action settlement.

Barclays PLC (BCS) shares seen under pressure on reports BCS mgmt says there is "no substance" to rumors of a $10 billion write-down, but when asked if it will report significant write-down, the company reportedly responded, "No comment." Due to significant decline in ordinary shares in London, shares were briefly suspended.

Disney (DIS) posts $0.42, vs. $0.36 a year ago, fourth quarter non-GAAP EPS on 3% revenue rise. EPS a penny ahead of Street consensus view.

Estee Lauder (EL) raises $0.50 annual dividend rate by 10% to $0.55. It authorizes the repurchase of up to another 20 million shares, which raises total authorization to 88 million shares. Bear Stearns upgrades to outperform from peer perform.

Hutschinson Technology (HTCH) posts $0.32 fourth quarter non-GAAP EPS, vs. breakeven a year ago, on 11% sales rise. It cites seasonally strong fourth quarter volume and lower costs resulting from actions the company took in the preceding quarter.

Allscrips Healthcare Solutions (MDRX) posts lower-than-expected $0.11, vs. $0.10 a year ago, third quarter non-GAAP EPS on 18% revenue rise. It sees 2007 revenue of $286-$288 million, non-GAAP EPS of $0.48-$0.49. It forecasts 2008 revenue growth of 20%-25%, non-GAAP EPS growth of 40%-45%. JP Morgan reportedly downgrades.

Leap Wireless (LEAP) says it will restate its financial statements for 2004-06, and for the first and second quarters of 2007 to correct for errors in previously reported service revenues, equipment revenues, and operating expenses.

Cephalon (CEPH) posts $4.58 third quarter loss per share, vs. $1.43 EPS (GAAP) a year ago, on 9.1% lower revenue. It also says it expects to pay $425 million to settle federal and state Medicaid investigations into its marketing practice. It reiterates 2007 sales guidance of $1.675-$1.725 billion, and increases basic adjusted 2007 EPS guidance to $4.45-$4.55 from $4.40-$4.50.

Clearwire (CLWR) posts $2.01 third quarter loss per share, vs. $0.61 loss per share, as charge offset 54% revenue rise. It says it and Sprint Nextel (S) decided to terminate their obligations under their letter of intent for deployment of a nationwide mobile WiMAX network.


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