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Ticker Shock: Boeing Flies Low; Unsuccessful Qwest


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

I was on my way home last night and my cell phone rang. I couldn't find which pocket it was in though, and after 4 rings, I finally picked it up. You should've seen the dirty looks shot in my direction - as if I'd just committed a crime. For a moment I thought remorse would be the best course of action. But maybe because I'm a fan of Clint Eastwood and Charles Bronson, instead, I shot a look right back.

Asian stocks were a mixed bag. The Hang Seng was up less than 1%, and the Nikkei was down less than 1%. Meanwhile, Europe was in the red earlier this morning. Here in the US we're currently trading lower.

Here's what has my eye this morning:

Qwest Communications (Q):
Woof - another big-name must-own from back in the day whose stock price looks like its like it just went 3 rounds with Mike Tyson.

The Colorado-based company was out with its fourth-quarter results this morning.

It put up $0.11 a share in the period. To be fair, the company was quick to point out in the release that: "The results include severance charges of $19 million, or $0.01 per diluted share."

Analysts had been looking for just $0.10.

To boot, its revs came in at just over $3.3 billion, which appeared to be in line with expectations.

In short, this is one of those stocks that I think could pop back, but I'm still reluctant to hop aboard for a couple of reasons.

1. With the stock under $5 (it's currently under $4), I have this feeling that brokers and institutions won't be aggressively promoting it.

2. I'm still a bit concerned about how 2009 earnings might shake out, and what the next few quarters might hold.

Bottom line: The stock is on my radar screen and there it'll stay until I get a better feel for what's cooking.

One last thing I should point out was the following line in the release regarding 2009: "Adjusted EBITDA is expected to be $4.2 to $4.4 billion, inclusive of the expected increase in non-cash pension and OPEB expense."

According to an Associated Press article: "Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters were expecting EBITDA of $4.3 billion for 2009."

Boeing (BA):
The big-name airplane maker was out with a release last night after the close. In it was the following:

"As reflected in our 10-K, our fourth-quarter and full-year 2008 per-share results are now $0.04 lower than was reported on Jan. 28th, primarily because of 2 subsequent events that have been incorporated into the fourth-quarter results. The first was a reduction in the collateral values of aircraft in our customer financing portfolio due to the receipt of new third-party aircraft value publications. The second was a liabilities increase resulting from an arbitration award.

"With those adjustments, our fourth-quarter 2008 loss now stands at $0.12 per share while our full-year 2008 earnings per share is $3.67."
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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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