Markets & Finance

Movers: Bank of America, J.C. Penney, Lowe's, Intuit


Stocks in the news Friday

From Standard & Poor's Equity ResearchShares of Bank of America (BAC) and Citigroup (C) continue to come under pressure on continued worries that the banks will be nationalized. S&P maintains hold on BAC.

UBS AG (UBS) is being sued by the U.S. government in an effort to force disclosure of the identities of as many as 52,000 US customers who allegedly hid their secret Swiss accounts from U.S. tax authorities.

Career Education (CECO) posts $0.38 vs. $0.21 fourth quarter EPS from continuing operations as improved operating margin helped offset 5.2% revenue decline.

WebMD Health (WBMD) posts $0.57, vs. $0.75, fourth quarter EPS from continuing operations despite 15% higher revenue. fourth quarter adjusted EBITDA was $33.8 million, vs. $33.1 million ($0.58 vs. $0.55 per share). Reaffirms 2009 guidance of $0.48-$0.69 EPS (continuing operations), adjusted EBITDA of $107-$122 million, and revenue of $420-$450 million. Sees first quarter 2009 revenue of $90-$92 million. S&P keeps sell. Citigroup upgrades to buy from hold.

J.C. Penney (JCP) posts $0.95, vs. $1.93 a year ago, fourth quarter EPS on 11% same-store sales drop, 9.9% total sales drop. It sees first quarter same-store sales down 12%-15%, $0.20-$0.30 loss per share.

Lowe's Companies (LOW) posts $0.11, vs. $0.28, fourth quarter EPS on 9.9% lower same-store sales, 3.8% lower total sales. Sees $0.23-$0.27 first quarter EPS, 6%-10% first quarter same-store sales decline; $1.04-$1.20 fiscal year 09, 4%-8% same-store sales decline.

Intuit (INTU) posts better-than-expected $0.34, vs. $0.40, second quarter non-GAAP EPS on 5% revenue decline. Sees $1.38-$1.46 billion third quarter revenue, non-GAAP EPS of $1.57-$1.68. Expects $3.13-$3.25 billion fiscal year 2009 revenue, which would represent growth of 2%-6%, below its prior guidance for 6%-10% growth; sees fiscal year 2009 non-GAAP EPS of $1.78-$1.89. S&P maintains hold.

New York Times (NYT) says its Board of Directors voted to suspend the quarterly dividend on the company's Class A and Class B common stock. In November 2008, NYT reduced the payout level of its fourth quarter to $0.06 per from $0.23 per share in the third quarter 2008.

Maxwell Technologies (MXWL) posts $0.07 fourth quarter EPS, vs. $0.04 loss, on 39% revenue rise. Says first quarter revenue is on pace to come in well above last year's first quarter. Roth Capital upgrades to buy from hold.

VCA Antech (WOOF) posts $0.30, vs. $0.29, fourth quarter EPS on 6.7% revenue rise. Street was looking for earnings of $0.23. Says animal hospital revenue increased 9.4% to $229 million driven by acquisitions, laboratory revenue increased 1.0% driven by acquisitions. Sees $1.56-$1.63 2009 EPS on revenue of $1.36-$1.39 billion.

HLTH Corp. (HLTH) posts better-than-expected $0.06, vs. $0.13, fourth quarter EPS from continuing operations despite 15% revenue rise. Street was looking for EPS of $0.04.

Wright Medical Group (WMGI) posts $0.31, vs. $0.27, fourth quarter non-GAAP EPS on 16% sales rise. Excluding forex impact, net sales increased 18%. Cuts $510-$520 million 2009 sales view to $500-$510 million, $0.96-$1.02 adjusted EPS to $0.85-$0.92. Sees $0.17-$0.19 first quarter EPS on revenue of $120-$123 million. New guidance incorporates expectation for procedural demand more in line with industry expectations, and additional costs.

Red Robin Gourmet Burgers (RRGB) posts better-than-expected $0.38, vs. $0.60, fourth quarter GAAP EPS on 7.4% lower company-owned same-restaurant sales, 8% higher total revenue. Says it will not provide earnings or revenue guidance for 2009 at this time. Expects to open 7 new company-owned and 3 new franchised restaurants in first quarter. For 2009, now fiscal year expects to open 13-14 new company-owned units, and franchisees are expected to open 7-8 new restaurants.

CV Therapeutics (CVTX) says its board of directors has thoroughly reviewed and rejected the previously announced unsolicited proposal from Astellas Pharma Inc. to acquire CVTX at $16.00 per share. Separately, CVTX posts $0.60 fourth quarter loss, vs. $0.57 loss, as higher costs, expenses offset 87% revenue rise.

Lifepoint Hospitals (LPNT) posts $0.63, vs. $0.55, fourth quarter EPS from continuing operations on 4.9% revenue rise. Sees 2009 EPS of $2.25-$2.55 on revenue of $2.9-$3.0 billion and EBITDA of $440-$470 million.

Cabela's (CAB) posts better-than-expected $0.74, vs. $0.84, fourth quarter EPS on 1.1% lower consolidated revenue. Street was looking for $0.67 EPS. fourth quarter 2008 results include $5.8 million of restructuring and impairment charges of $5.8 million, and an $8.7 million revenue benefit due to a change in estimate for breakage on gift cards. fourth quarter 2008 same-store sales rose 2.2%. Expects 2009 revenue to decline only slightly, EPS to be about equal to 2008 levels.


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