Equities Update: Afternoon Improvement

by: Midnight Trader

4:16 PM, Nov 24, 2009 --

  • NYSE down 16.1 (0.2%) to 7,170.24.
  • DJIA down 17 (0.2%) to 10,434.
  • S&P 500 down 0.6 (0.1%) to 1,106.
  • Nasdaq down 6 (0.3%) to 2,169.


  • Hang Seng down 1.53%
  • Nikkei down 1.01%
  • FTSE down 0.44%


(+) ZLC reports loss that's smaller than Street view.

(+) ADI continues evening gain that followed earnings beat.

(+) MDT beats with Q2, raises earnings view.

(+) MRNA expands bladder cancer program.

(+) AMLN gets analyst upgrade.

(+) AEZS reports positive Phase 2 study data in endometrial cancer.

(+) AEO meets with earnings, just beats with sales.

(+) RMBS sees trial on track.

(+) TIVO to team with GOOG on audience research data.

(+) PRU gets upgrade.

(+) DLTR beats with earnings.

(+) HNZ turns higher; beats with Q2 results, raises view.


(-) BRCD beats by 2 cents with EPS, revs just beat.

(-) NSPH erases pre-market gains, gets FDA OK to update package insert for respiratory virus assay.

(-) ZAGG turns lower; inks deal with T-Mobile Germany.

(-) HPQ continues downside reaction to mixed results out last night.

(-) ORS reports weaker Q3 vs year ago.

(-) WH surprises with Q3 loss.


Stocks end marginally lower and have now declined in four of five sessions. The major averages did pare losses and made the highs of the day in afternoon action after the release of Federal Reserve meeting minutes. The minutes showed a more upbeat assessment of the economy from the central bank. A return to losing ways for the dollar contributed to the stock market's improvement.

Stocks fell more sharply earlier after a revised reading on Q3 GDP showed the economy expanded at a 2.8% clip, slower than the 3.5% pace first reported. The revision was in line with Street expectations.

The Conference Board said its Consumer Confidence Index increased to 49.5 in November from a revised reading of 48.7 in October, better than the expected drop to 45.5. However, it is still considered lackluster, especially with the start of the holiday shopping season.

Earlier, data showed home prices rose slightly in September, the fourth straight monthly increase and a clear sign the housing market is in recovery. The Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller home price index of 20 major cities released this morning rose 0.3% to a seasonally adjusted reading of 144.96. Prices rose month-over-month in 11 metro areas. Compared with a year earlier, however, prices are down 9.4%, the smallest year-over-year decline since January 2008.

As for company news, Brocade Communications (NASDAQ:BRCD) fell after it reported Q4 revs of $521.8 mln, just ahead of the analyst mean of $521 mln on Thomson Reuters. Non-GAAP EPS was $0.15 per share, two cents better than the Street view.

Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) fell after its results. HPQ reported Q4 non-GAAP EPS of $1.14 per share, a penny better than the analyst mean on Thomson Reuters. Revs were $30.8 bln, ahead of expectations of $30.3 bln.

For Q1, the company is guiding for revs of about $29.6 to $29.9 bln and non-GAAP EPS in the range of $1.03 to $1.04 per share. The Street is at $29.7 bln in revs and earnings of $1.04 per share. For FY 2010, the company expects revs of about $118 to $119 bln and non-GAAP EPS of $4.25 to $4.35 per share, vs. analyst estimates of $119 bln in revs and earnings of $4.31 per share.

Analog Devices (NASDAQ:ADI) gained it reported Q4 revs of $572 mln, well ahead of the analyst mean of $524 mln on Thomson Reuters. EPS was $0.36 per share, better than expectations of $0.26 per share.

For Q1, the company expects revenue to be about flat with Q4. The Street view is $533 mln. EPS is seen at about $0.36 to $0.37 per share, vs. Street estimates of $0.28 per share.

Medtronic (NYSE:MDT) jumped after it reports Q2 non-GAAP EPS of $0.77 per share, ahead of Street expectations of $0.74 per share. Revenue was $3.83 bln, topping estimates of $3.74 bln.

For FY 2010, the company raised its EPS guidance to a range of $3.17 to $3.22 per share, up from its prior view of $3.10 to $3.20 per share. Analysts are expecting EPS of $3.15 per share. The company also reiterated its 5 percent to 8 percent constant currency revenue growth outlook for the foreseeable future and believes that the 5 percent to 8 percent constant currency growth rate remains reasonable for the second half of fiscal year 2010.

Among retailers, DSW (NYSE:DSW) gained after Q3 profits top estimates. It earned $0.60 per share, topping the Thomson Reuters mean for $0.46. Sales were $444.62 million, above expectations for $424.58 million.

Looking ahead to fiscal 2009, the company raised its earnings outlook to a range of $0.90 - $1.00 per share from its earlier guidance of $0.70 - $0.80 a share. The company also sees annual comparable store sales growth of around 1%. Analysts are currently looking for earnings of $0.78 per share on revenue of $1.55 billion for the full year.

Borders (BGP) fell after a larger-than-expected Q3 loss. It lost $0.65 per share, wider than the Thomson Reuters mean for a $0.45 loss. Sales fell to $595.5 million from a year ago.

Barnes & Noble (NYSE:BKS) is down after it says it lost $0.30 per share in Q2, less items, meeting the Thomson Reuters mean. Sales were $1.16 billion, up from a year ago. It lowered its FY EPS outlook to $0.33 to $0.63 from $0.59-$0.89.