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Spotlight Stocks: Amazon, MBIA, Pulte Homes, Starbucks


Thursday's top stories and stocks with potential to move...


Stocks to watch for Thursday, January 31, 2008:

  • (AMZN) reported 4Q earnings of $207 mln, or 48 cents a share, risen from $98 mln, or 23 cents a share a year ago. Revenue grew 42% to $5.67 billion, beating expectations. The company also forecast 1Q revenue to beat analyst expectations.
  • MBIA (MBI) announced that it will write down an additional $3.5 bln in its credit derivatives portfolio. According to the Wall Street Journal, this is more than 10 time larger than the $352.4 mln write down in the 3Q. The company reported a 4Q net loss of $2.3 bln, or $18.61 a share, where a year ago it reported a gain of $181 mln, or $1.32 a share.
  • Pulte Homes (PHM) reported a loss in the 4Q of $874.7 mln, or $3.46 a share, down sharply from a loss of $8.41 mln, or 3 cents a share a year ago. Revenue fell to $2.9 billion from $4.39 billion. According to MarketWatch, new home orders for the fourth quarter fell 29% to 4,562 from 6,446 last year, and Pulte Homes' backlog as of Dec. 31 of 7,890 homes was valued at $2.5 billion, down from $3.58 billion the previous year.
  • Starbucks (SBUX) reported fiscal 1Q net income of $208.1 mln, or 28 cents a share, up from $205 mln, or 26 cents a share a year ago. Sales rose 17% to $2.8 billion. Additionally, the company will close 100 stores in the US due to underperformance, which corresponds with CEO Howard Schultz's plan to slow growth domestically and focus internationally.
  • Alliance Data Systems (ADS) reported 4Q net income of $33.9 mln, or 42 cents a share, down from $39.6 mln, or 48 cents a share a year ago. Revenue at the company grew to $602.7 million from $524.5 million. Additionally, the company is suing Blackstone (BX) to force the issue of its $6.4 bln acquisition of ADS.
  • Procter & Gamble (PG) posted a fiscal 2Q profit of $3.27 bln, or 98 cents a share, compared with $2.86 bln, or 84 cents a share a year ago. The gain was helped by strength in emerging markets, which offset slow growth in North America and Western Europe, reported Reuters.

Market Recap

  • Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng -0.84%, Nikkei +1.85%, Sensex -0.62%, Taiwan -0.30% and Shanghai -0.78%.
  • A quick check across the pond finds the CAC -1.20%, DAX -1.30%, FTSE -1.38%, ATX -1.91%, Swiss Mkt. -1.86% and Stockholm -0.80%.
  • In commodities, crude oil is trading lower -1.10 to 91.23 while gold is higher +2.7 to 923.3 this morning.


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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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