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Stocks to Watch: Apple, Bausch & Lomb, Exxon, Morgan Stanley, Wal-Mart


Get you motor runnin'


Stocks to watch for Monday, October 2

  • Citigroup reduces Apple (AAPL) to hold – Citi said it sees little potential for revenue upside for the iPod maker and said they don't believe Apple will introduce a new video iPod with a larger screen and "virtual click wheel" before the peak holiday season.
  • Bausch & Lomb (BOL) said it has received a 3-month extension for continued listing on the New York Stock Exchange. The company said the extension gives it until Jan. 2 to file its Form 10-K for the year ended Dec. 31, 2005.
  • Chiquita Brands International (CQB) said it has begun the process of obtaining a temporary waiver from its lenders to get more flexibility in light of the current challenging market environment.
  • Crane (CR) said it has completed the acquisition of Noble Composites, a privately held manufacturer of premium, high-gloss finished composite panels used in motor homes. Stamford, Ct.-based Crane also said it completed the acquisition of certain assets of Automatic Products International, a privately held manufacturer of vending equipment.
  • Exxon Mobil (XOM) said it will require the resignation of any director who doesn't get a majority of votes in an uncontested election.
  • Flowserve (FLS) said it swung to a first-quarter net profit of $13.9 million, or 24 cents a share. In the same period the last year, the company reported a loss of $4.01 million, or 7 cents a share. Revenue rose 6% to $653.9 million from $616.1 million.
  • Genentech (DNA) and Biogen Idec (BIIB) said the Food and Drug Administration has approved two additional uses for Rituxan.
  • Harrah's Entertainment (HET) is trading higher by approximately +2.35% pre-market following reports from the WSJ that private equity firms are in talks to strike an LBO for the casino giant. Those familiar with the situation say a deal could be announced as early as this week, with Texas Pacific Group and Colony Capital likely being involved.
  • Human Genome Sciences (HGSI) said results of a Phase 1 clinical trial of HGS004 demonstrate that it was well tolerated, and exhibited antiviral activity in patients who are infected with HIV-1.
  • Johnson & Johnson's (JNJ) Pharmaceutical Research & Development LLC unit said it has received an approvable letter from the Food and Drug Administration on a New Drug Application for paliperidone extended-release tablets for the treatment of schizophrenia.
  • Keane (KEA) said it has cut its third-quarter per-share earnings outlook to 11 cents to 13 cents, down from its previous view of 13 cents to 15 cents. The company also lowered its revenue outlook for the period to $230 million to $232 million from $240 million to $250 million.
  • LCA-Vision (LCAV) lowered its view for 2006 earnings per share to a range of $1.60 to $1.70. The company's prior outlook for annual per-share income was $1.80 to $1.90. LCA-Vision, which provides laser vision correction services, said it sees revenue growth for the second half of 2006 of 25% to 30%. Also Friday, the company said Kevin Hassey has resigned as president, effective Oct. 6.
  • Liberty Media (LINTA) and IDT (IDT) said the final stage of Liberty's acquisition of IDT's Entertainment Division is complete. The closing encompasses the division's Australian and Canadian operations and follows the closing of the U.S. and U.K. operations that occurred on Aug. 24.
  • Luxottica Group (LUX) said it has sold its Things Remembered unit to GB Merchant Partners LLC for $200 million. The company said the sale of the business will not affect 2006 results.
  • Magma Design Automation (LAVA) said U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California denied a motion by Synopsys Inc. seeking to stop the potential review of two patents over which the two companies are disputing. As a result, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office may choose to review the patents and could invalidate them, Santa Clara-based Magma said.
  • Mattel (MAT) said the shareholders of Radica Games (RADA) have approved the acquisition of the company by Mattel for $11.55 cash a share. The companies expect to close the transaction on Tuesday.
  • Merck (MRK) said HIV-infected patients who failed antiretroviral therapy and who were resistant to drugs in all three classes of oral antiretroviral drugs maintained greater antiretroviral suppression after 24 weeks of therapy with the company's MK-0518 than patients who received a placebo.
  • Morgan Stanley (MS) has acquired a small commercial bank in China, which will give the U.S. investment bank the ability to offer structured derivative products, home mortgages and corporate loans to Chinese companies.
  • Nelnet (NNI) said it has received a report from the Office of Inspector General of the Department of Education that questions the company's qualification of certain loans receiving 9.5% special allowance payments. The report recommends that the Department of Education instruct Nelnet to return what the OIG considers overpayments in connection with these loans and exclude such loans from future requests.
  • Pier 1 Imports (PIR) said Chief Executive and Chairman Marvin Girouard has decided to retire from the company and its board effective Feb. 28, 2007. The Fort Worth, Tx.-based specialty retailer said it has hired New York-based executive search firm Herbert Mines Associates to help find a new CEO.
  • A judge has given Qwest Communications (Q) final approval to a $400 million settlement of a shareholder lawsuit against them that alleged that the company, and former officers and board members, concealed information about revenue in a multi billion-dollar accounting scandal, according to a Friday media report.
  • Sony (SNE) declared "Open Season" as the debut release from the company's digital animation unit scored the top spot at the weekend box office, earning $23 million.
  • Sunset Financial Resources (SFO) said it has reached agreement with Alesco Financial Trust to decrease the amount of shares to be issued to Alesco shareholders in its proposed merger with Alesco.
  • Tim Hortons (THI) said Wendy's International (WEN) has completed its distribution of its remaining 82.75% controlling stake in Tim Hortons.
  • Technical Olympic USA (TOA) said the Transeastern Joint Venture, of which it is part, and its lenders are currently working to quantify the venture's future prospects and create an action plan. The homebuilder said it is unable to determine the outcome of the discussions, but in the worst case scenario, the company could lose its $92.6 million investment in the joint venture and threaten its ability to recover $48.5 million of loans and receivables.
  • Wal-Mart Stores (WMT) said same-store sales rose 1.8% in September from the same period a year ago, coming in close to the mid-point of its 1 to 3% forecast range for the month. The world's biggest retailer noted that last September, sales were boosted by consumers buying items in readiness for hurricanes. "Please bear in mind that we are up against strong comparisons in geographic areas affected by last year's hurricane and also in specific categories impacted by hurricane preparation and recovery," the Bentonville, Ark.-based retailer said in a weekly recorded sales update.

Market Update

  • Asian trading closed with the Nikkei +0.79%, Shanghai +0.89% and Taiwan +1.13%, the Hang Seng and Sensex were closed for the holiday.
  • A check of the European bourses finds the CAC +0.18%, DAX +0.09%, FTSE +0.18% and Swiss Market +0.11%.
  • Crude oil is trading -0.42 to 62.49 while gold is +1.8 to 607.0.

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