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Stocks To Watch: Activision, Broadcom, Dell, Hovnanian, Tiffany


Today's big stories and some stocks with potential to move...


Stocks to watch for Friday, June 1:

  • 3M (MMM) said it has acquired the manufacturing and marketing rights to the Peridex brand periodontal rinse product from Zila Inc. for $9.5 million in cash.
  • Activision (ATVI) said its net loss deepened for the fourth fiscal quarter compared with last year as expenses rose. The video game publisher reported a preliminary net loss of $14.4 million, or 5 cents a share, for the period compared with a loss of $9.1 million, or 3 cents a share, for the same period last year. Revenue jumped 66% to $313 million. Excluding charges for stock options, the company said net losses came in at 4 cents a share.
  • Brinker International (EAT) boosted its buyback program by $300 million. The Dallas restaurant-chain company bought back $569 million in shares so far this fiscal year. The company recently had 113.5 million shares outstanding.
  • Broadcom (BRCM) accused Qualcomm (QCOM) of concealing 35,000 documents that Broadcom says would have proven Qualcomm was lying during a January trial.
  • Brocade's (BRCD) second-quarter net income fell 98% to $843,000, or less than a penny a share, from $13.5 million, or 5 cents a share, a year earlier. Non-GAAP earnings were 11 cents a share. The network storage company's revenue rose 89% to $345.3 million from $182.7 million.
  • Dell (DELL) plans to cut 10% of its work force, its first layoffs since 2001. The PC maker also reported flat earnings and 2.8% sales growth.
  • Dendreon (DNDN) said the FDA agreed to accept interim trial data on prostate-cancer treatment Provenge, sending the company's shares sharply higher.
  • Fidelity National Financial (FNF) said it is promoting co-Chief Operating Officer Alan Stinson to the position of chief executive. The title insurance company also named Raymond Quirk, currently co-COO, and Brent Bickett, currently president, as co-presidents. William Foley II will continue as chairman, Fidelity said.
  • Harris (HRS) signed a definitive agreement to acquire Multimax Inc. for $400 million in cash and said fiscal 2007 earnings will be at the lower end of its previous forecast. The communications and information technology cited cost overruns on a satellite contract for the revised forecast. Its previous forecast range called for $2.77 to $2.81 a share excluding items
  • Heinz (HNZ) posted a 7.8% rise in profit amid strong sales of its frozen meals, and the food company issued an upbeat outlook.
  • Hovnanian Enterprises (HOV) said it swung to a second-quarter loss of $28.1 million from net earnings of $103.6 million during the same period a year ago. The loss available to common shareholders was $30.7 million, or 49 cents a share. A year ago, earnings available to common shareholders were $101 million, or $1.55 a share. The home builder said revenue for the three months ended April 30 fell to $1.11 billion from $1.57 billion.
  • Immucor (BLUD) said it expects fiscal 2008 per-share earnings of 92 cents to 96 cents on revenue of $249 million to $257 million. On average, analysts expect 2008 per-share earnings $1.03 on revenue of $260 million, according to a poll by Thomson Financial. The blood transfusion systems company also announced its Chief Financial Officer Patrick Waddy resigned. The company said he will stay on until its annual report is filed. The company said Waddy has commuted from Canada, where his family still lives, since becoming interim financial chief in 2005, but is not in a position to continue these arrangements.
  • Ista Pharmaceuticals (ISTA) said its dry-eye syndrome treatment ecabet sodium showed positive Phase IIb trial results. The pharmaceutical company said patients using the treatment had strong trends in blink rate, the ocular symptom disease index and the patients' most bothersome symptom. A total of 112 patients were given either ecabet sodium of a placebo four times a day for 90 days. The study's four endpoints included two objective and two subjective symptoms.
  • Higher margins and a jump in same-store sales helped J. Crew (JCG) push its fiscal first quarter profit up sharply, the apparel retailer said. J. Crew earned $24.6 million, or 39 cents a share, up from $4.4 million, or 12 cents a share, a year ago. Revenue came in at $297.3 million, a gain of 24% while sales at stores open at least a year rose 13%. The average estimate of analysts polled by Thomson Financial had been for the company to earn 30 cents a share on sales of $271 million. J. Crew also reiterated long term targets for mid single-digit percentage growth in same-store sales and earnings per share growth "in excess of 20%."
  • Longs Drug Stores (LDG) said preliminary retail drug-store sales from continuing operations rose 2.2% in May to $372.9 million from $364.9 million. Same-store sales were flat in the four weeks ended May 24, reflecting a 1.2% increase in pharmacy and a 1.1% decline in front-end sales. The drugstore chain said pharmacy sales accounted for 51.5% of sales, up from 50.1% a year ago.
  • Nike (NKE) released its third corporate-responsibility report, highlighting efforts to improve conditions for the company's contract-factory workers.
  • Pall (PLL) reported third-quarter net earnings of $67.1 million, or 54 cents a share, up from $25.2 million, or 20 cents a share, during the year-ago period. Pro forma per-share earnings were 53 cents vs. 37 cents. The maker of filtration, purification, and separation products said that revenue for the three months ended April 30 rose to $559.3 million from $510 million.
  • Sears Holdings (SHLD) said quarterly net income rose 20%, boosted by items including a legal settlement gain and a gain from Sears Canada post-retirement benefit plans curtailment.
  • Tiffany (TIF) posted a 15% jump in quarterly profit, as sales growth in the U.S. and most of its international markets offset weakness in Japan.
  • Wachovia (WB) agreed to acquire A.G. Edwards (AGE) in a $6.95 billion deal that will make it one of the biggest U.S. brokerage firms.
  • W&T Offshore (WTI) said it's offering about $450 million of its senior notes due 2014. The proceeds from the offering will be used to reduce outstanding debt under the existing credit agreement, the oil and gas company said.

Market Update:

  • Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng -0.15%, Nikkei +0.47%, Sensex +0.18%, Taiwan +1.29% and Shanghai -2.65%.
  • A quick look across the pond finds the CAC +0.35%, DAX +0.76%, FTSE +0.17%, ATX +0.56%, Swiss Mkt. +0.45% and Stockholm +0.57%.
  • Crude oil is trading -0.11 to 63.90 while gold is +3.8 to 670.5 this morning.
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