April 2008 Archives

Closing Bell Report

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Although the Federal Reserve cut interest rates by a quarter point, the markets closed modestly lower with the Dow slipping 12 points to 12,820 after the Fed indicated that rate cuts may over.  Nasdaq fell 13 points to 2413.

On the upside

Increased expenses weighed down first quarter income for Align Technologies (Nasdaq: ALGN) but the results beat estimates prompting an upgrade.

KeyBanc Capital Markets analyst Lynne Collier upgraded Buffalo Wild Wings (Nasdaq: BWLD) after higher sales lifted first quarter earnings.

Plantronics (NYSE: PLT) reported sharply higher fourth quarter earnings that beat estimates by a wide margin as international revenue climbed.

On the downside

Goldman Sachs analyst Jason Armstrong downgraded Savvis (Nasdaq: SVVS) after the company cut its full year revenue guidance.

Second quarter losses for Headwaters (NYSE: HW) were wider than expected prompting the company to slash its full year guidance.

J. P. Morgan analyst Christopher Blansett downgraded MEMC Electronic Materials (NYSE: WFR) saying that expectations are too high.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 10 to 9 on the NYSE while decliners barely edged out advancers by a slim margin on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 3 points to 716.

Mid-Day Report

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The markets rose during the midday in anticipation of another interest rate cut.  The Dow soared 110 points to 12,942 while Nasdaq climbed 17 points to 2443.

On the upside

Although first quarter earnings tumbled for Arris Group (Nasdaq: ARRS), the results surpassed estimates prompting an upgrade.

International growth boosted first quarter earnings for Cummins (NYSE: CMI) to beat analyst expectations.

CommScope (NYSE: CTV) swung to a first quarter loss due to acquisition related charges but the results topped estimates.

On the downside

Although strong demand lifted first quarter earnings for Garmin (Nasdaq: GRMN), the results fell short of analyst expectations.

Chicago Bridge & Iron (NYSE: CBI) reported higher first quarter earnings but the results missed estimates due to higher expenses.

Valero Energy (NYSE: VLO) blamed soaring crude oil prices that weighed down margins for sharply lower first quarter earnings.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks gained 6 points to 725.

Opening Bell Report

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Investors were relieved to learn that the economy managed to grow 0.6% in the 1st quarter.  The markets opened higher with the Dow rising 46 points to 12,877 while Nasdaq added 7 points to 2433.

On the upside

General Motors (NYSE: GM) posted a $3.3 billion loss and lowered its outlook, but the results for the automaker were better than expected with overseas growth allaying weakness in North America.

Kraft Foods (NYSE: KFT) reported higher revenues and lower earnings as costs cut into margins.  Analysts were relatively impressed with the company's turnaround efforts.

Consumer products maker Procter & Gamble (NYSE: PG) posted slightly higher profits and raised its 2008 outlook as cost controls kept margins high.

On the downside

Time Warner (NYSE: TWX) delivered results that met expectations while announcing a plan to spin off the rest of its cable TV operations.

Jones Lang LaSalle (NYSE: JLL) posted lower profits compared to year-ago levels due to a one-time fee from a large sale in Germany last year.  The global real estate services company also reported higher revenues.

Shares of OfficeMax (NYSE: OMX) dropped after the office supply retailer reported a decline in revenues.  Profits edged up due to cost controls.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by 4 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 2 points to 721.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets closed mixed as upbeat earnings tempered soaring foreclosure rates.  The Dow tumbled 40 points to 12,832 while Nasdaq added 2 points to 2426.

On the upside

Falling oil prices lifted airline stocks higher.  Also, Delta (NYSE: DAL) and Northwest (NYSE: NWA) announced that employees and retirees will be able to travel for free on either airline.

The Food and Drug Administration ended its ban on Watson Pharmaceuticals' (NYSE: WPI) Florida plant allowing production to begin again after three years of scrutiny.

Rent-A-Center (Nasdaq: RCII) reported higher first quarter earnings that surpassed expectations.


On the downside

LCA-Vision (Nasdaq: LCAV) blamed weak demand and higher costs for first quarter earnings that dropped to fall far short of estimates.

While strong international sales lifted first quarter earnings for Agco (NYSE: AG) to more than twice last year's income, the agricultural equipment company forecast full year results below expectations.

First quarter earnings rose for Olin (NYSE: OLN) as prices improved, but the chemicals company warned that second quarter results will disappoint.


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 7 to 5 on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks dropped 6 points to 719.

Mid-Day Report

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Soaring home foreclosure rates and falling consumer confidence weighed down the markets during the midday with the Dow dropping 23 points to 12,849.  Nasdaq slipped 2 points to 2422.

On the upside

Steakhouse Texas Roadhouse (Nasdaq: TXRH) reported higher first quarter earnings that surpassed expectations as revenue at newer locations climbed.

First quarter earnings for Lear (NYSE: LEA) soared as the company trimmed expenses.  The impressive results prompted the automotive interior products maker to lift its full year outlook.

Although first quarter earnings for Office Depot (NYSE: ODP) tumbled due to the soft economy, the results beat expectations.


On the downside

Disappointing sales growth and lower than expected production levels prompted Gildan Activewear (NYSE: GIL) to cut both its second quarter guidance as well as its full year outlook.

Although Fresh Del Monte Produce (NYSE: FDP) reported higher first quarter earnings, gross margin fell prompting a downgrade.

Second quarter earnings for Energizer Holdings (NYSE: ENR) dropped to fall short of estimates due to the weak economy and the company warned of a challenging environment for the rest of the year.


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by more than 7 to 5 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks fell 6 points to 719.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as home prices tumbled while foreclosures more than doubled from year-ago levels.  The Dow lost 46 points to 12,824 as Nasdaq dropped 8 points to 2415.

On the upside

Profits at MasterCard (NYSE: MA) more than doubled as global demand for its credit card services offset weakness in the U.S. market.

European-based Royal Dutch Shell PLC (NYSE: RDS-B) posted surging profits due to increases in oil prices.

Corning (NYSE: GLW) reported profits that more than tripled due to strong demand for glass used in flat-screen TVs and computers.


On the downside

Shares of Merck (NYSE: MRK) plunged after the FDA issued a "not approvable" letter for its cholestrol drug candidate.  The Dow component dragged down the index.

Deutsche Bank AG (NYSE: DB) wrote down $4.2 billion in the 1st quarter to post its first quarterly loss since 2003.

Fair Issac (NYSE: FIC) reported flat revenues and lower profits as competitors launched a competing credit scoring system.


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 4 on the NYSE and by 4 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 3 points to 721.

Closing Bell Report

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It was a mixed close for the markets as record oil prices tempered merger news.  The Dow dropped 20 points to 12,872 while Nasdaq added a point to 2424.

On the upside

UAL Corp. (NYSE: UAUA) and US Airways Group (NYSE: LCC) are engaged in advanced merger discussions with an announcement expected in several weeks.

Third quarter earnings for food distributor Sysco (NYSE: SYY) rose to surpass estimates despite a difficult environment.

Texas Industries (NYSE: TXI) will pay a quarterly dividend of 7.5 cents per share on May 30 to shareholders of record May 2.


On the downside

Carolina Group (NYSE: CG) reported lower first quarter earnings that fell short of estimates due to higher advertising expenses.

First quarter earnings fell for Loews (NYSE: LTR) to miss expectations as sales in its insurance and tobacco units dropped.

Jefferies analyst Richard Shane Jr. downgraded Cash America (NYSE: CSH) for its high valuation.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 7 to 5 on the NYSE and by nearly 5 to 4 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 3 points to 725.

Mid-Day Report

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The markets traded modestly higher during the midday over Mars' $23 billion offer for Wm. Wrigley Jr.  The Dow gained 26 points to 12,917 while Nasdaq rose 7 points to 2430.

On the upside

Shares of Sysco (NYSE: SYY) climbed ahead of its third quarter earnings release.

Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL) updated its iMac computers with faster processors and more powerful graphics.

Shares of Visa (NYSE: V) rose ahead of its first earnings report as a publicly traded company.


On the downside

X-Rite (Nasdaq: XRIT) ended an interest rate swap agreement it had with Goldman Sachs and is negotiating the payment of its settlement amount.

Brasil Telecom received a buyout offer of approximately $3.5 billion from rival Oi Paricipacoes (NYSE: TNE).

Shares of potash producers Mosaic (NYSE: MOS) and Agrium (NYSE: AGU) gave back some of their gains from last week when rising potash prices lifted their stock.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 3 to 2 on the NYSE and by nearly 5 to 4 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 2 points to 724.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened mixed as investors stayed on the sidelines ahead of corporate earnings news.  The Dow slipped 6 points to 12,885 while Nasdaq edged up a point to 2424.

On the upside

Family-owned candy maker Mars has offered to buy Wrigley (NYSE: WWY) for about $23 billion in cash or $80 a share.  Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK-A) will purchase a $2.1 billion minority equity stake in the Wrigley subsidiary once the deal is completed.

Investors snapped up China-related companies with shares of Sohu.com (Nasdaq: SOHU) and Sina (Nasdaq: SINA) rising.


Shares of Ford (NYSE: F) rose in heavy trading as analysts pinned growth for the automaker on sales of smaller, full-efficient cars.


On the downside

A deadline for Yahoo (Nasdaq: YHOO) to accept a buyout offer from Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) passed on Saturday with no movement on either side.

Shares of Radio Shack (NYSE: RSH) fell ahead of its corporate earnings report after an analyst lowered his opinion on the consumer electronics retailer.

Shares of ExpressJet Holdings (NYSE: XJT) gave up some of Friday's gains after the regional carrier rejected an offer from SkyWest (Nasdaq: SKYW).

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of 6 to 5 on the NYSE and by 10 to 9 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks held steady at 721.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets closed mixed as crude oil prices rose again while consumer confidence tumbled.  The Dow climbed 43 points to 12,892 while Nasdaq lost 6 points to 2423.

On the upside

Shares of Progenics Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: PGNX) continued to climb after the FDA approved its opiate induced constipation treatment Relistor.  The biopharmaceutical also announced plans to repurchase up to $15 million in common stock

Fannie Mae (NYSE: FNM) reported that its mortgage commitments rose in March to $31 billion from $25 billion the previous month.

First quarter earnings for Trimble Navigation (Nasdaq: TRMB) surged to beat estimates as revenue climbed.

On the downside

MEMC Electronic Materials (NYSE: WFR) swung to a loss for the first quarter and forecast second quarter results below estimates due to problems at one of its manufacturing plants.

Horizon Lines (NYSE: HRZ) blamed record fuel prices, a drop in traffic to Puerto Rico and severe weather in Alaska for sharply lower first quarter earnings.  The shipping and logistics company also cut its full year guidance.

NBTY (NYSE: NTY) reported second quarter earnings that dropped to fall far short of analyst expectations as costs soared.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by 9 to 7 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 5 points to 722.

Mid-Day Report

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A sharp drop in consumer confidence along with oil prices that continue to climb sent the markets tumbling during the midday with the Dow falling 61 points to 12,788.  Nasdaq plunged 28 points to 2401.

On the upside

LM Ericsson (Nasdaq: ERIC) reported lower first quarter earnings but the results surpassed expectations.

Morgan Keegan analyst Art Hatfield upgraded YRC Worldwide (Nasdaq: YRCW) over expectations that the light freight carrier industry will improve.

Southwestern Energy (NYSE: SWN) reported  first quarter earnings that more than doubled prompting the company to lift its second quarter production outlook.

On the downside

The Food and Drug Administration requested that Isis Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: ISIS) include data from two preclinical studies in its final late stage trial of the company's cholesterol drug mipomersen.

Western Digital (NYSE: WDC) reported third quarter earnings that more than doubled to beat estimates due to strong sales but the stock price fell.

NetGear (Nasdaq: NTGR) disappointed with first quarter earnings that dropped to fall short of estimates prompting a downgrade.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 9 to 7 on the NYSE and by more than 7 to 5 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 5 points to 713.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened mixed as consumer sentiment fell to its lowest level in 25 years.  The Dow edged up 2 points to 12,851 while Nasdaq dropped 15 points to 2413.

On the upside

Shares of Goodyear Tire & Rubber (NYSE: GT) surged after the company reported revenues and profits that beat expectations.   The world's 3rd largest tire company saw international sales offsetting weakness in the U.S. market.

Profits at American Express (NYSE: AXP) were weighed down by late consumer payments, but analysts expect the financial services company to ride out the U.S. economic downturn through its diverse global operations.

Analysts raised their opinion on Sohu.com (NYSE: SOHU) on hopes that the Beijing Olympics will boost the Chinese Internet portal business.

On the downside

Shares of Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) edged lower after the company posted results that met expectations, but analysts worried about slowing Office software sales.  Meanwhile, the software giant is expected to mount a proxy fight in order to acquire Internet portal Yahoo (Nasdaq: YHOO).

Shares of Ford (NYSE: F) fell in heavy trading after the automaker reported better than expected results, but some analysts believed that the stock may be overvalued.

America Movil SA de CV (NYSE: AMX) posted disappointing 1st quarter results.  Analysts promptly downgraded the Mexican mobile phone company.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a narrow margin on the NYSE, but were edged out by a margin of 6 to 5 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks slipped 2 points to 715.

Closing Bell Report

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Despite sharply lower new home sales, the markets closed higher with the Dow climbing 86 points to 12,849 as Ford reported an unexpected profit for the first quarter.  Nasdaq surged 24 points to 2429.

On the upside

A committee of the European Medicines Agency issued a positive opinion of Progenics Pharmaceuticals' (Nasdaq: PGNX) and Wyeth's (NYSE: WYE) opioid induced constipation treatment Relistor.

NextWave Wireless (Nasdaq: WAVE) retained the services of Deutsche Bank and UBS to advise the company on the sale of its nearly nationwide wireless spectrum holdings.

Shares of Jefferies Group (NYSE: JEF) recovered today after Fitch Ratings downgraded its issuer default and debt ratings yesterday.

On the downside

Insight Enterprises (Nasdaq: NSIT) warned that first quarter results will fall short of estimates due to disappointing sales in North America.

CNH Global (NYSE: CNH) blamed internal inefficiencies as well as problems with suppliers for first quarter results that fell short of estimates.

Symmetry Medical (NYSE: SMA) reported a loss for fiscal 2007 and restated results for 2005 and 2006.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 5 to 3 on the NYSE and while decliners barely edged out advancers by a slim margin on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks climbed 9 points to 717.

Mid-Day Report

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Ford reported a surprising first quarter profit to lift the markets higher during the midday with the Dow climbing 53 points to 12,817.  Nasdaq gained 17 points to 2422.

On the upside

Ford Motor (NYSE: F) reversed year ago losses to report a profit for the first quarter despite the weakened domestic economy as sales rose in Europe and South America.

Celestica (NYSE: CLS) swung to a first quarter profit even as revenue slipped due to a lower restructuring charge.

Although LSI (NYSE: LSI) reported a loss for the first quarter, the results surpassed estimates prompting an upgrade.

On the downside

Taser International (Nasdaq: TASR) reported sharply higher first quarter earnings that more than doubled but the results fell short of estimates.

Whirlpool (NYSE: WHR) blamed higher costs and weak domestic demand for lower first quarter earnings that missed expectations by a wide margin.

While Newell Rubbermaid (NYSE: NWL) reported higher first quarter earnings, the consumer products maker cut its full year guidance.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 5 to 4 on the NYSE and while decliners edged out advancers by nearly 3 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 3 points to 711.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as investors digested the latest report on falling home prices.  The Dow lost 42 points to 12,721 while Nasdaq fell 18 points to 2387.

On the upside

Shares of Skechers USA (NYSE: SKX) surged after the shoe company posted higher profits due to strong international sales.  Analysts promptly upgraded the stock.

F5 Networks (Nasdaq: FFIV) posted results that met forecasts while reiterating its outlook.  The company sells  software to run computer networks.

ITT Educations Services (NYSE: ESI) reported sharply higher earnings that beat estimates due to strong student enrollment.

On the downside

Shares of Amazon (Nasdaq: AMZN) lost ground after the online retailer warned about shrinking margins.

Starbucks (Nasdaq: SBUX) warned of shrinking profits due to a decline in coffee consumption due to the weak economy.

3M Co (NYSE: MMM) which makes Scotch tape and Post-It notes posted lower 1st quarter profits.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks dropped 7 points to 700.

Closing Bell Report

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Oil prices retreated as the nation's oil inventory rose to lift the markets to a modestly higher close with the Dow climbing 43 points to 12,763.  Nasdaq soared 28 points to 2405.

On the upside

Level 3 Communications (Nasdaq: LVLT) narrowed first quarter losses as revenue topped estimates.

Second quarter earnings for Skyworks Solutions (Nasdaq: SWKS) rose to surpass estimates as sales climbed prompting the semiconductor maker forecast third quarter results ahead of expectations.

Health Management Associates (NYSE: HMA) reported sharply higher first quarter earnings that more than doubled due to a significant gain.

On the downside

South Financial Group (Nasdaq: TSFG) blamed impairment charges and credit losses for a first quarter loss of $201.3 million.

Although Infinera (Nasdaq: INFN) swung to a profit for the first quarter, the digital optical communications systems provider forecast second quarter results below estimates.

Delphi Financial Group (NYSE: DFG) reported lower first quarter earnings that fell short of estimates as investment income dropped prompting the company to trim its full year outlook.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 10 to 9 on the NYSE while decliners edged out advancers by nearly 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks gained 4 points to 708.

Mid-Day Report

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An increase in the nation's inventory of crude oil lifted the markets during the midday with the Dow gaining 59 points to 12,780.  Nasdaq climbed 25 points to 2402.

On the upside

GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE: GSK) offered $720 million to acquire Sirtris Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: SIRT).

First quarter earnings for Anadigics (Nasdaq: ANAD) more than doubled to beat estimates due to strong sales prompting the company to forecast second quarter results ahead of expectations.

Teradyne (NYSE: TER) reversed year ago losses to post a profit for the first quarter.

On the downside

Third quarter earnings for Cree (Nasdaq: CREE) plunged to fall short of estimates while the semiconductor maker forecast fourth quarter income below expectations.

Arrow Electronics (NYSE: ARW) reported lower first quarter earnings as sales dropped and forecast disappointing second quarter results.

Although Carter's (NYSE: CRI) reported higher first quarter income due to strong sales, the children's clothing retailer lowered its full year guidance.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 7 to 5 on the NYSE while decliners edged out advancers by nearly 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks rose 5 points to 709.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened higher as investors mulled over the latest batch of corporate earnings news.  The Dow rose 78 points to 12,806 while Nasdaq surged 30 points to 2407.

On the upside

Shares of Safeco (NYSE: SAF) soared after Liberty Mutual offered $6.12 billion to create the 5th largest property insurer in the U.S.

Boeing (NYSE: BA), a Dow component, posted higher earnings as backlogs rose to a record high.

Yum Brands (NYSE: YUM) reported higher revenues and earnings.  Analysts promptly upgraded the fast-food restaurant operator of KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell outlets.

On the downside

Shares of Ambac Financial (NYSE: ABK) tumbled after the company posted a sizable loss due to mortgage-related bond losses.

Affiliated Managers Group (NYSE: AMG) posted lower profits as the investment manager lost customers and incurred higher costs.

Oil and natural-gas producer XTO Energy (NYSE: XTO) reported higher revenues and profits while raising its guidance.  Investors took profits on the stock which was trading near all-time highs.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a narrow margin on both the NYSE and Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added a point to 704.

Closing Bell Report

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Surging oil prices along with disappointing earnings sent the markets tumbling to close sharply lower with the Dow dropping 105 points to 12,720.  Nasdaq plunged 31 points to 2377.

On the upside

DryShips (Nasdaq: DRYS) will make a tender offer to acquire the minority stake in offshore drilling services firm Ocean Rig that it does not already own.

Pride International (NYSE: PDE) lowered the threshold from 15% to 10% ownership that will trigger its shareholder rights plan after shareholder Seadrill increased its stake to 9.9%.

Medco Health Solutions (NYSE: MHS) signed a contract to provide pharmacy benefits services to UnitedHealth (NYSE: UNH) for four years.

On the downside

Spectrum Pharmaceuticals' (Nasdaq: SPPI) mid-stage clinical trial of its enlarged prostate treatment ozarelix failed to demonstrate statistically significant patient improvement.

CIT Group (NYSE: CIT) raised $1.5 billion by selling common and convertible preferred stock.

Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) chief executive Richard Anderson said that domestic fares must increase by 15 to 20% in order to break even due to surging fuel prices.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 7 to 3 on the NYSE and by 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plummeted 14 points to 704.

Mid-Day Report

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Record oil and gas prices sent the markets tumbling during the midday with the Dow plunging 117 points to 12,708.  Nasdaq plummeted 35 points to 2373.

On the upside

Analysts upgraded Volterra Semiconductor (Nasdaq: VLTR) after strong demand boosted the company's first quarter earnings above expectations.

Zoran (Nasdaq: ZRAN) narrowed first quarter losses and forecast second quarter revenue ahead of analyst estimates.

Shares of Las Vegas Sands (NYSE: LVS), which operates the Sands Macao and Venetian Macao in Macau, climbed after the Chinese government said that no new casino licenses will be issued.

On the downside

UAL (NYSE: UAUA) blamed record fuel expenses for a $537 million loss in the first quarter.  The parent of United Airlines also announced flight cuts as well as the elimination of 1,100 jobs.

Omnicell (Nasdaq: OMCL) reported lower first quarter earnings and cut its full year outlook prompting downgrades.

Second quarter earnings for BJ Services (NYSE: BJS) tumbled to fall short of estimates as prices dropped in North America.  The oilfield services firm also forecast third quarter results well below expectations.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 7 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plummeted 17 points to 701.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as another report of falling home prices triggered worries of a prolonged housing slump.  The Dow lost 76 points to 12,748 while Nasdaq fell 18 points to 2389.

On the upside

AT&T (NYSE: T) posted higher earnings due to strong demand for wireless and enterprise services.  The results met analysts' expectations.

Analysts upgraded National City (NYSE: NCC) due to valuation.  The bank raised $7 billion which helped to stabilize its balance sheet, but diluted existing shareholders.

Millicom International Cellular (Nasdaq: MICC) posted higher revenues and profits while adding 2.8 million subscribers.  The carrier operates in developing countries throughout Latin America, Africa and Asia.

On the downside

Royal Bank of Scotland (NYSE: RBS) posted an $11 billion loss with another $8 billion in anticipated write-downs to cover mortgage-related losses.

Shares of Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX) tumbled after the online movie rental service warned of slowing subscription sales and higher costs to ramp up its Internet delivery service.

Texas Instruments (Nasdaq: TXN) warned that 2nd quarter results may miss revenue targets due to the slowing economy.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 8 points to 709.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets closed mixed with the Dow losing 24 points to 12,825 as crude oil prices surged to another record close and corporate earnings disappointed.  Nasdaq added 5 points to 2408.

On the upside

ReneSola (NYSE: SOL) boosted its 2008 revenue guidance and lifted its production outlook last week.

Shares of Fording Candian Coal Trust (NYSE: FDG) climbed ahead of its earnings release after market close.

China's Ministry of Finance will provide monthly subsidies to refiner China Petroleum & Chemical (NYSE: SNP) and oil producer PetroChina (NYSE: PTR) to compensate the companies for losses incurred when processing imported crude oil.

On the downside

Colonial Bancgroup (NYSE: CNB) disappointed with lower first quarter earnings that fell short of estimates prompting the bank to cut its dividend while announcing plans to sell 25 million shares in order to raise capital.

Analysts cited a drop in client assets along with increasing expenses for lowering their earnings estimates and price targets for MF Global (NYSE: MF).

Lee Enterprises (NYSE: LEE) blamed a one time charge for swinging to a second quarter loss.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 4 on the NYSE and by 9 to 7 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks fell 3 points to 718.

Mid-Day Report

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Disappointing earnings news weighed down the markets during the midday with the Dow dropping 59 points to 12,790.  Nasdaq slipped 2 points to 2401.

On the upside

Blue Coat Systems (Nasdaq: BCSI) will pay approximately $268 million in cash to acquire bandwidth management company Packeteer (Nasdaq: PKTR).

Quest Diagnostics (NYSE: DGX) reported higher first quarter earnings with its acquisition of AmeriPath lifting revenue.

To raise cash, Jefferies Group (NYSE: JEF) will issue 26.6 million shares to Leucadia National (NYSE: LUK) in exchange for $533.6 million in Leucadia stock which Jefferies can sell for cash.

On the downside

Amylin (Nasdaq: AMLN) blamed disappointing sales of its diabetes drug Byetta for wider than expected first quarter losses.

MedCath (Nasdaq: MDTH) warned that second quarter results will fall short of estimates due to lower revenue.

Aladdin Knowledge Systems (Nasdaq: ALDN) disappointed with first quarter earnings that missed expectations as expenses surged.  The software security company also cut is full year outlook.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by 7 to 5 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks fell 4 points to 717.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as investors mulled over the latest batch of earnings news.  The Dow lost 62 points to 12,786 while Nasdaq fell 5 points to 2397.

On the upside

Hasbro (NYSE: HAS) posted higher earnings due to strong sales of its Transformer and Littlest Pet Shop toys.

Shares of Arch Coal (NYSE: ACI) jumped to a record high after the company reported earnings that tripled due to higher production and soaring prices.

Shares of Pilgrim's Pride (NYSE: PPC) rose following an analyst upgrade of the stock citing higher chicken prices  through 2009.

On the downside

Shares of National City (NYSE: NCC) fell after the bank posted a loss and raised $6 billion from private equity firms to shore up its balance sheet significantly diluting existing shareholders.

Bank of America (NYSE: BAC) posted a smaller profit while setting aside $3.3 billion in reserves for portfolio losses.

Mattel (NYSE: MAT) reported a loss on slowing sales of Barbie dolls.   The toymaker blamed higher product costs and legal fees for missing analysts' expectations of a profit of a penny per share

Analysts downgraded Caterpillar  (NYSE: CAT) on valuation.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks slipped 3 points to 717.

Closing Bell Report

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A surprisingly upbeat earnings report by Google boosted the markets to a sharply higher close with the Dow leaping 229 points to 12,849.  Nasdaq jumped 61 points to 2403.

On the upside

Overstock.com (Nasdaq: OSTK) reported a narrower than expected first quarter loss as revenue rose.

Second quarter earnings for Amdocs (NYSE: DOX) rose to surpass estimates due to increased revenue from its software management business.

Manpower (NYSE: MAN) impressed with first quarter earnings that far exceeded estimates due to strong sales in France.

On the downside

GFI Group (Nasdaq: GFIG) announced the resignation of North American credit head Donal Fewer and warned that a competitor may lure away more of its brokers.

First quarter earnings for Amcol International (NYSE: ACO) tumbled to fall short of expectations as expenses climbed.

Citizens Republic Bancorp (Nasdaq: CRBC) blamed a surging loan loss provision for sharply lower first quarter earnings that missed estimates.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of 7 to 2 on the NYSE and by more than 5 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks soared 13 points to 721.

Mid-Day Report

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Google's impressive earnings lifted the markets sharply higher during the midday with the Dow leaping 235 points to 12,856.  The tech-heavy Nasdaq jumped 61 points to 2403.

On the upside

PMC-Sierra (Nasdaq: PMCS) widened first quarter losses as expenses outpaced revenue but the results were better than expected.

MF Global (NYSE: MF) expects to report higher fourth quarter revenue and profit as trading volume increased.

While Tempur Pedic (NYSE: TPX) blamed the weak economy for sharply lower first quarter earnings, revenue beat estimates and the mattress maker forecast 2008 results above expectations.

On the downside

Tomotherapy (Nasdaq: TOMO) cut its full year earnings outlook as customers delay their orders.

Evergreen Solar (Nasdaq: ESLR) narrowed first quarter losses as sales rose but the solar power company forecast second quarter results below estimates.

Falling gold prices weighed down shares of Barrick Gold (NYSE: ABX) and Goldcorp (NYSE: GG) .

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 4 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks soared 13 points to 721.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened sharply higher on upbeat earnings news as the Dow surged 172 points to 12,792.  The tech-heavy Nasdaq leaped 42 points to 2384.

On the upside

Citigroup (NYSE: C) posted a hefty loss of $5.1 billion, mostly to write down loan losses, while cutting another 9000 jobs.  The results were better than expected.

Shares of Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) soared after the online search giant posted results that beat expectations.

Heavy equipment maker Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT) posted higher revenues and earnings as international sales offset weakness in the U.S. market.

On the downside

Shares of Intuitive Surgical (Nasdaq: ISRG) tumbled after the medical device maker raised its forecasts, but the targets fell short of analysts' expectations.

Exxon Mobil (NYSE: XOM) announced plans to sell off its businesses in Portugal and Spain to Portugal's Galp Energia for about $420 million.

Atlas Energy Resources (NYSE: ATN) wrote down $112 million in losses due to unfavorable results from the hedging of natural gas prices.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 5 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 5 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks climbed 11 points to 719.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets closed near the flatline over mixed earnings news.  The Dow added a point to 12,620 while Nasdaq lost 8 points to 2342.

On the upside

Although Leggett & Platt (NYSE: LEG) reported lower first quarter earnings due to weak demand, the diversified manufacturer beat estimates prompting an upgrade.

A drop in interest expenses lifted first quarter earnings for Knoll (NYSE: KNL) to surpass estimates.

AmeriCredit (NYSE: ACF) entered a one year $2 billion forward purchase agreement with Deutsche Bank.

On the downside

First quarter earnings for Polycom (Nasdaq: PLCM) rose but the company forecast second quarter results below expectations.

SunPower (Nasdaq: SPWR) reported sharply higher first quarter earnings as revenue climbed prompting the company to raise its second quarter outlook as well as its full year guidance.  However, the stock price tumbled after the solar power products maker changed the wording of its revenue forecast for 2009.

RBC Capital Markets analyst Gerard Cassidy downgraded Astoria Financial (NYSE: AF) after the company reported lower first quarter earnings.

In the broad market, declining issues barely edged out advancers by a slim margin on the NYSE while decliners outpaced advancers by nearly 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks dropped 5 points to 708.

Mid-Day Report

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Mixed earnings news weighed down the markets during the midday with the Dow dropping 29 points to 12,591. Nasdaq lost 16 points to 2334.

On the upside

Analysts lifted their price targets for Altera (Nasdaq: ALTR) after the company reported first quarter earnings that surpassed estimates.

Stronger than expected wholesale revenue prompted Chinese jewelry maker Fuqi International (Nasdaq: FUQI) to raise its first quarter as well as its 2008 full year outlook.

While MGIC Investment (NYSE: MTG) swung to a loss for the first quarter, the results beat estimates.

On the downside

Second quarter earnings for Meridian Bioscience (Nasdaq: VIVO) fell short of estimates due to weak sales.

Nokia (NYSE: NOK) reported higher first quarter earnings but warned of lower profits for 2008 as the value of the dollar weakens.

While Briggs & Stratton (NYSE: BGG) reported higher third quarter earnings, the results fell short of estimates and the company forecast full year results below expectations.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 5 to 41 on the NYSE and by more than 7 to 5 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks fell 5 points to 708.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as investors mulled over the latest batch of earnings news.  The Dow lost 32 points to 12,587 while Nasdaq fell 13 points to 2336.

On the upside

IBM (NYSE: IBM) posted higher profits that beat expectations.  Overseas revenues were strong while domestic results impressed analysts and investors who worried about the slowing U.S. economy.

Shares of Avant Immunotherapeutics (Nasdaq: AVAN) leaped on news that rights to its cancer vaccine was snapped up by Pfizer (NYSE: PFE) for $40 million and future milestone payments.

McMoRan Exploration (NYSE: MMR) returned to profitability due to strong performance from its deep drilling activities.

On the downside

Shares of Merrill Lynch (NYSE: MER) fell after the world's largest brokerage posted a loss of $6 billion and announced plans to cut 4000 jobs.

Epicor Software (Nasdaq: EPIC) lowered its earnings outlook citing weak demand for its consulting services.

Polycom (Nasdaq: PLCM) posted higher profits, but revenues missed forecasts.  Analysts promptly downgraded the communications equipment maker.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on both the NYSE and  Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 4 points to 709.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets surged to close sharply higher with the Dow leaping 257 points to 12,619 over strong earnings results.  Nasdaq soared 64 points to 2350.

On the upside

Citi Investment Research analyst Chip Dillon issued a client note recommending Smurfit-Stone Container (Nasdaq: SSCC) saying that strong pricing for containerboard will boost the company's earnings.

Excel Maritime (NYSE: EXM) completed its $1.9 billion acquistion of Quintana.

Elan (NYSE: ELN) and Biogen Idec (Nasdaq: BIIB) reported a 25% increase in Tysabri users over last quarter and reassured investors that no new cases of a rare and fatal brain virus developed in patients.

On the downside

While Mobile TeleSystems (NYSE: MBT) reported fourth quarter earnings that quadrupled over year ago levels, the results fell short of estimates.

Wolverine World Wide (NYSE: WWW) reported higher first quarter earnings and lifted its full year outlook but the company's first quarter revenue missed expectations.

Morgan Stanley downgraded Sallie Mae (NYSE: SLM) ahead of its earnings report.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 5 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 5 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks leaped 21 points to 713.

Mid-Day Report

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Strong earnings results tempered news of sharply lower home construction and higher consumer prices to lift the markets higher during the midday with the Dow leaping 188 points to 12,550.  Nasdaq jumped 54 points to 2340.

On the upside

The Food and Drug Administration approved Pozen's (Nasdaq: POZN) acute migraine medication Treximet.

First quarter earnings for Knight Capital Group (Nasdaq: NITE) rose to surpass estimates as revenue from its global markets business climbed.

Shares of Agrium (NYSE: AGU) surged as the price of fertilizer exports to China more than doubled.

On the downside

Healthcare Services Group (Nasdaq: HCSG) blamed a sharp drop in investment and interest income for lower first quarter earnings that fell short of expectations.

Hedge fund group GLG Partners (NYSE: GLG) restated financial results for 2006 and 2007.  The company also announced the resignation then the resignation withdrawal of portfolio manager Greg Coffey.

Shares of Safeway (NYSE: SWY) dropped after the American Farm Bureau reported a 9% jump in the cost of 16 basic groceries from a year ago.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 4 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 5 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks surged 15 points to 707.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened higher on upbeat corporate earnings news with the Dow surging over 100 points to 12,470.  The tech-heavy Nasdaq leaped 29 points to 2315.

On the upside

JPMorgan Chase (NYSE: JPM) posted lower profits versus year-ago levels, but the results beat expectations.  The bank also set aside $5.1 billion as reserves and charges against loan losses.  Analysts believed that the bank remains healthy enough to absorb the Bear Stearns (NYSE: BSC).

Intel (Nasdaq: INTC) posted 1st quarter revenues and profits that beat forecasts.  Investors were especially impressed with the chip giant's margins and snapped up the stock.  Shares of rival Advanced Micro Devices (NYSE: AMD) also rose.

Pharmaceutical company Abbott Laboratories (NYSE: ABT) posted higher earnings on strong sales of its rheumatoid arthritis drug treatment.

On the downside

Seagate Technology (NYSE: STX) reported higher revenues and earnings, but the results missed forecasts due to weak sales of notebook computer hard drives.

East West Bancorp (Nasdaq: EWBC) posted a small profit due to a large charge against real estate loan losses.

Talbot's (NYSE: TLB) which operates a chain of apparel and shoe stores reported that its letter of credit agreement lapsed without getting renewed.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of 5 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 3 points to 695.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets rose to close higher with the Dow climbing 60 points to 12,362 even as crude oil prices set another record and wholesale inflation surged.  Nasdaq gained 10 points to 2286.

On the upside

Fifth Third Bancorp's $1.1 billion cash and stock offer to acquire First Charter (Nasdaq: FCTR) was approved by the Federal Reserve.

Rumors that a major investor is poised to take a significant stake in Semiconductor Manufacturing International(NYSE: SMI) lifted shares of the chip maker.

BB&T Capital Markets upgraded Smithfield Foods (NYSE: SFD) .

On the downside

Robert W. Baird & Co. analyst Tristan Gerra said that Sigma Designs (Nasdaq: SIGM) will lose market share and failed to secure a contract to supply chips to Motorola for Internet television set-top boxes.

Avnet (NYSE: AVT) blamed soft demand and lower rebates for warning that third quarter results will fall short of estimates.

Although State Street (NYSE: STT) reported higher first quarter income that surpassed expectations, Fitch Ratings warned that State Street's ratings may be cut due to substantial unrealized losses in the company's fixed income portfolio.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 3 to 2 on the NYSE and by nearly 5 to 4 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks gained 6 points to 692.

Mid-Day Report

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Despite record oil prices and soaring wholesale prices, the markets advanced during the middday with the Dow climbing 42 points to 12,344.  Nasdaq rose 7 points to 2283.

On the upside

Compuware (Nasdaq: CPWR) forecast fourth quarter earnings and revenue ahead of estimates.

Regions Financial (NYSE: RF) reported higher first quarter earnings that surpassed expectations due to gains from the sale of investment securities and Visa stock.

Oracle (Nasdaq: ORCL) partnered with Satyam Computer Services (NYSE: SAY) to develop an integration architecture for Product Lifecycle Management.

On the downside

Crocs (Nasdaq: CROX) blamed disappointing sales and expenses incurred from the closure of its manufacturing plant in Canada for slashing its first quarter guidance.  Analysts promptly downgraded the maker of colorful plastic shoes and cut their outlooks.

Affymetrix (Nasdaq: AFFX) lowered its outlook for the year saying that research spending by its clients is expected to drop.

Analysts downgraded Novatel (Nasdaq: NVTL) after the wireless modem maker warned that first quarter earnings will fall short of estimates.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of 10 to 9 on the NYSE and by nearly the same on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 3 points to 689.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened higher on positive earnings news and a rebound in New York area manufacturing.  The Dow rose 68 points to 12,370 while Nasdaq climbed 8 points to 2284.

On the upside

Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) posted higher profits due to aggressive cost-cutting and a diverse product mix that absorbed a decline in anemia drug sales.

Adtran (Nasdaq: ADTN) posted higher revenues and earnings citing strong demand for broadband access equipment.

China-based ReneSola (NYSE: SOL) signed a 6-year contract to supply solar wafers to Ningbo Solar Electric Power and Eoplly New Energy Technology.

On the downside

Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) and Northwest Airlines (NYSE: NWA) agreed to combine in a $17 billion stock-swap deal that would create the world's biggest carrier keeping the Delta brand.  No regulatory hurdles were expected.

Wireless modem maker Novatel Wireless (Nasdaq: NVTL) lowered its forecast for the current quarter due to delayed purchases by a major European carrier.

Shares of Emulex (NYSE: ELX) fell after an analyst downgraded the storage network solution provider.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 4 points to 690.

Closing Bell Report

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Wachovia's surprising first quarter loss weighed down the markets to a lower close with the Dow falling 23 points to 12,302.  Nasdaq dropped 14 points to 2276.

On the upside

Clayton Holdings (Nasdaq: CLAY) will be taken private by an affiliate of Greenfield Partners for approximately $132.6 million.

Part of what may be the largest oil find in thirty years could be in a region partially owned by Repsol YPF (NYSE: REP).

Shares of Hess (NYSE: HES) soared after a leak forced the closure of a major Royal Dutch Shell pipeline .

On the downside

Wachovia's (NYSE: WB) surprising first quarter loss sparked earnings concerns and sent shares of First Horizon (NYSE: FHN) and National City (NYSE: NCC) tumbling.

Rick's Cabaret International (Nasdaq: RICK) completed its acquisition of adult nightclub The Executive Club in Dallas for approximately $9.5 million.

A class action lawsuit has been filed against Agria (NYSE: GRO) alleging that the Chinese agricultural supplier provided misleading and omitted items in its initial public offering filing.

In the broad market, declining issues barely outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 3 to 2 on the NYSE and by more than 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 2 points to 686.

Mid-Day Report

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Despite earnings concerns, the markets traded modestly higher during the midday with the Dow rising 24 points to 12,350 as retail sales inched up in March.  Nasdaq added 3 points to 2293.

On the upside

CapitalSource (NYSE: CSE) will pay approximately $58 million to acquire Fremont General's (NYSE: FMT) 22 retail branches as well as $5.6 billion in deposits.

Raymond James upgraded AirTran (NYSE: AAI) after the low cost carrier allayed liquidity concerns by reminding investors that the company increased its reserve by $32 million  between December 31 and March 31.

The National Petroleum Agency of Brazil announced that the Carioca offshore oil discovery made by Petrobas (NYSE: PBR) may contain as much as 33 billion barrels of oil equivalent, the largest find in thirty years.

On the downside

Carpenter Technology (NYSE: CRS) blamed high expenses and disappointing demand for warning that third quarter results will fall short of estimates.

BMO Capital Markets analyst Avram Fisher downgraded Perini (NYSE: PCR) saying that the company paid too much to acquire Tutor-Saliba.

Shares of Citigroup (NYSE: C) tumbled after Wachovia (NYSE: WB) reported a loss for the first quarter.  Citigroup will release first quarter earnings this week.

In the broad market, declining issues barely outpaced advancers by a slim margin on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks gained 3 points to 691.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened mostly lower as March retail sales inched up mostly due to higher receipts at gasoline service stations.   The Dow edged up 3 points to 12,329 while Nasdaq lost 5 points to 2284.

On the upside

Circuit City (NYSE: CC) received an unsolicited bid from Blockbuster (NYSE: BBI) to merge its chain of video stores with retail electronic stores in a $1 billion deal.

Pinnacle Airlines (Nasdaq: PNCL) was upgraded by an analyst citing strong cash flow in the coming years.

Pilgrim's Pride (NYSE: PPC) announced plans to cut chicken processing by 5% in order to cut costs amid higher feed prices.

On the downside

Wachovia (NYSE: WB) posted an unexpected 1st quarter loss, cut its dividend and announced a $7 billion cash infusion through stock sale and conversions.

Shares of Cymer (Nasdaq: CYMI) fell after an analyst downgraded the maker of laser for chip manufacturing.

Federated Investors (NYSE: FII) posted higher profits and revenues, but the higher cost of maintaining money market accounts cut into margins.  Its clients have shifting money away from stock funds into safer accounts.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of 4 to 3 on the NYSE and by nearly 4 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 2 points to 685.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets skidded to close sharply lower after GE reported disappointing first quarter results that fell short of estimates and forecast second quarter earnings below expectations.  The Dow plummeted 257 points to 12,325 while Nasdaq plunged 61 points to 2290.

On the upside

Cowen & Co. analyst Rob Stone boosted his 2008 earnings and revenue outlook for Trina Solar (NYSE: TSL) to account for a new supply contract.

WBB Securities upgraded Cleveland BioLabs (Nasdaq: CBLI) citing the company's improved outlook.

JPMorgan downgraded Watsco (NYSE: WSO) but the stock price rose.

On the downside

Nvidia (Nasdaq: NVDA) warned analysts that it expects to lose market share in the graphic processor unit space.

Needham & Co. analyst Charlie Wolf issued a client note with a negative assessment of Research in Motion's (Nasdaq: RIMM) Blackberry calling the device's platform primitive.

Omnicare (NYSE: OCR) will release first quarter results on May 8, 2008.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 7 to 2 on the NYSE and by nearly the same on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plummeted 19 points to 688.

Mid-Day Report

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Disappointing earnings sent the markets tumbling with the Dow plummeting 138 points to 12,444.  Nasdaq plunged 30 points to 2321.

On the upside

PDL BioPharma (Nasdaq: PDLI) announced plans to spinoff its biotechnology products as a new company and will pay shareholders of record on May 5 a special dividend of $4.25.

Shares of Bed Bath & Beyond (Nasdaq: BBBY) rose over a report that privately held Linens 'n Things will file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Bargain hunters lifted shares of Pantry (NYSE: PTRY) higher.

On the downside

Jefferies & Co. analyst Adam Benjamin downgraded Zoran (Nasdaq: ZRAN) citing weak DVD and camera technology.

Shares of Navteq (NYSE: NVT) tumbled after analysts predicted falling prices for personal navigation devices.

Bernstein Research analyst Alexia Howard downgraded Hershey (NYSE: HSY) and cut her price target for the candy maker saying that climbing commodity prices will hurt profits.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 2 on the NYSE and by nearly the same on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 9 points to 698.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower on disappointing earnings news from General Electric.  The Dow dropped over 100 points to 12,464 while Nasdaq tumbled 27 points to 2324.

On the upside

Medical software company TriZetto Group (Nasdaq: TZIX) accepted a $1.4 billion cash offer by private equity firm Apax Partners.

Merger talks between Delta (NYSE: DAL) and Northwest (NYSE: NWA) were moving forward after reaching a tentative contract agreement with Delta's pilots, according to Bloomberg News.

Longs Drug Stores (NYSE: LDG) reported higher same-store sales versus year-ago levels that beat targets as the stock bounced from a 52-week low.

On the downside

Shares of Frontier Airlines (Nasdaq: FRNT) plummeted after the discount carrier filed for bankruptcy in order to prevent its credit card processor from increasing its holdback.  The company planned to continue operations.

General Electric (NYSE: GE) posted earnings that missed expectations due to weak performance from its financial services operations and a weak economy.

Shares of Foundry Networks (Nasdaq: FDRY) floundered after the Internet service provider lowered its profit outlook due to a drop in orders.   Analysts promptly downgraded the stock.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 9 points to 698.

Closing Bell Report

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A larger than expected drop in unemployment claims last week lifted the markets to a modestly higher close with with the Dow rising 55 points to 12,582.  Nasdaq climbed 30 points to 2352.

On the upside

Second quarter earnings for FCStone Group (Nasdaq: FCSX) surged to beat estimates as revenue climbed.

Teen retailer Aeropostale (NYSE: ARO) reported that March same store sales climbed 2.5%, more than the expected 1.4% gain.

Banc of America upgraded National Semiconductor (NYSE: NSM) saying that the company can improve its profit margin.

On the downside

Jefferies & Co. analyst Romeo Reyes downgraded Virgin Media (Nasdaq: VMED) and slashed his price target for the company after the company announced the sale of $1 billion in bonds.

Stage Stores (NYSE: SSI) slashed its first quarter outlook due to sharply lower same store sales for March.

JPMorgan (NYSE: JPM) reduced its stake in Ambac Financial Group (NYSE: ABK) from 7.7% to 0.4%.


In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by more than 7 to 5 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks gained 9 points to 707.

Mid-Day Report

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Yahoo's efforts to partner with Google to boost its advertising revenue lifted the markets higher during the midday with the Dow climbing 97 points to 12,625.  Nasdaq soared 36 points to 2358.

On the upside

The Defense Department approved Force Protection's (Nasdaq: FRPT) sale of 157 armored trucks to Britain and has notified Congress of the $125 million contract.

Fourth quarter earnings for Apogee (Nasdaq: APOG) soared to exceed analyst estimates and the glassmaker forecast 2008 results ahead of expectations.

Ikon Office Solutions (Nasdaq: IKN) lifted its second quarter outlook due to better than expected sales.

On the downside

Super Micro Computer (Nasdaq: SMCI) blamed the weak economy for lowering its third quarter revenue guidance.

Friedman Billings downgraded Pantry (Nasdaq: PTRY) after the convenience store operator warned of a second quarter loss amidst falling sales.

Tween Brands (NYSE: TWB) slashed its earnings outlook for the first quarter as sales fell short of estimates.


In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks climbed 11 points to 709.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened modestly higher following a flat retail sales report and a drop in jobless claims.  The Dow added 20 points to 12,547 while Nasdaq surged 24 points to 2346.

On the upside

Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT) raised its earnings outlook as the world's largest retailer adjusted its product mix for a slowing economy.  Shares of Costco (Nasdaq: COST) edged higher as analysts expect discounters to do well this year.

Banc of America Securities upgraded semiconductor stocks including shares of Intel (Nasdaq: INTC) and Analog Devices (NYSE: ADI) which promptly rose.

Japan's Takeda Pharmaceutical offered $8.8 billion to buy Millenium Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: MLNM).

On the downside

Focus Media Holding (Nasdaq: FMCN) lowered its outlook for 2008 due to uncertainty surrounding text message rules in China.

GlobalStar (Nasdaq: GSAT) announced the pricing of $135 million in convertible notes.

Fitch Ratings downgraded investments held by First Marblehead (NYSE: FMD) following The Education Resource Institute's bankruptcy filing yesterday.


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of 5 to 4 on both the NYSE and Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks rose a fraction to 699.

Closing Bell Report

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Record oil prices along with profit warnings weighed down the markets to a lower close with the Dow losing 49 points to 12,527.  Nasdaq plunged 27 points to 2322.

On the upside

Reliant Energy (NYSE: RRI) began offering electricity to commercial clients using at least 100 kilowatts per month and expects to offer power to smaller clients soon.

Russian mining and steel company Mechel Open Joint Stock Company (NYSE: MTL) purchased Romania's Ductil Steel for approximately $221 million.

Rising gold prices lifted shares of Gold Fields Ltd. (NYSE: BA).

On the downside

AMAG Pharmaceutical (Nasdaq: AMAG) chief executive Brian Pereira realized $6.5 million in gains in 2007 after exercising stock options.

MSCI (NYSE: MXB) announced sharply lower first quarter earnings and said that parent company Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) will sell a 28% stake in the company.

A federal judge sustained a $362 million lawsuit against Westwood One (NYSE: WON) by Pompano Helicopter that alleges that Westwood One engaged in unfair, slanderous and deceptive trade practices.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 5 to 2 on the NYSE and by nearly 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plunged 14 points to 698.

Mid-Day Report

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Earnings concerns sent the markets lower during the midday with the Dow tumbling 84 points to 12,493.  Nasdaq plunged 26 points to 2322.

On the upside

Cardiac equipment maker EP MedSystems (Nasdaq: EPMD) agreed to by acquired by St. Jude Medical (NYSE: STJ) in cash and stock deal valued at approximately $92.1 million.

Websense (Nasdaq: WBSN) reaffirmed its outlook for 2008 and said that first quarter results will surpass analyst estimates.

Boeing (NYSE: BA) announced yet another delay to its more fuel-efficient 787 jetliner due to problems with its supply chain but the stock price climbed.

On the downside

Convenience store operator The Pantry (Nasdaq: PTRY) warned of second quarter losses as gas and merchandise sales dropped.

The Venezuelan government confirmed rumors that it will nationalize Ternium Sidor (NYSE: TX), the country's largest steel maker .

AMR (NYSE: AMR) canceled 850 American Airlines flights in order to inspect the wiring of its mid-range planes MD-80.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 2 to 1 on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks dropped 7 points to 705.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened mixed with the major indexes on the downside as companies lowered their profit outlook.  The Dow lost 14 points to 12,562 while Nasdaq fell 10 points to 2338.

On the upside

Citigroup (NYSE: C) may be close to selling off $12 billion in leveraged loans to private equity firms and improving its balance sheet in the process, according to a Wall Street Journal report.

Spirit AeroSystems (NYSE: SPR) reported an increase in payments by Boeing (NYSE: BA) for its B787 supply contract, according to an SEC filing.

Graphite electrode maker GrafTech International (NYSE: GTI) was upgraded by an analyst citing strong worldwide demand offsetting the weak U.S. market.

On the downside

Shares of United Parcel Service (NYSE: UPS) fell after the courier lowered its earnings forecast for the 1st quarter due to the week economy.

Pfizer (NYSE: PFE) reported that a handful of smokers testing its inhaled insulin drug treatment developed lung cancer.   Shares of its partner Nektar Therapeutics (Nasdaq: NKTR) promptly fell while shares of rival Mannkind (Nasdaq: MNKD) tumbled.

MSCI (NYSE: MXB) said that its majority owner, New York investment bank Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS), may sell its 28% stake in the investment index company.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 3  on the NYSE and by 4 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 3 points to 708.

Closing Bell Report

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A record low for pending home sales along with disappointing earnings weighed the markets down to a lower close with the Dow dropping 36 points to 12,576.  Nasdaq tumbled 16 points to 2349.

On the upside

The Australian's Web site reported that China is seeking to expand its stake in BHP Billiton (NYSE: BHP), the world's largest miner.

MetroPCS (NYSE: PCS) reported a larger than expected 450,000 increase in new subscribers for the first quarter prompting an upgrade.

Second quarter earnings for MSC Industrial (NYSE: MSM) rose to surpass estimates as sales climbed and the industrial supply company forecast third quarter results above expectations.

On the downside

Standard & Poor's downgraded the credit rating of Broadridge Financial Solutions (NYSE: BR) and lowered its outlook citing the company's risk factor.

Credit Suisse downgraded Infineon Technologies (NYSE: IFX) citing the weak dollar and memory chip prices.

Trinity Biotech (NYSE: TRIB) announced that institutional investors committed to purchasing 1.8 million American Depositary Shares of the company at a 15% discount from the April 7 closing price.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more more than 7 to 5 on the NYSE and by more than 9 to 7 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost a point to 712.

Mid-Day Report

|

Disappointing earnings weighed down the markets during the midday with the Dow dropping 40 points to 12,572.  Nasdaq tumbled 17 points to 2347.

On the upside

NutriSystem (Nasdaq: NTRI) forecast first quarter revenue ahead of analyst estimates prompting upgrades as marketing and customer retention improved.

The Russian governement approved Antigenics' (Nasdaq: AGEN) kidney cancer vaccine Oncophage making the product the only vaccine for cancer available in the world.

Arch Coal (NYSE: ACI) said that a supply shortage will boost prices and lift 2008 earnings.

On the downside

Agria (NYSE: GRO) announced the resignation of chief operating officer Zhixin Xue and warned that the agricultural supplier may file its 2007 annual report late.

The bankruptcy filing of The Education Resources Institute, which guarantees student loans, sent shares of student loan servicer provider First Marblehead (NYSE: FMD) tumbling.

Pending home sales dropped to their lowest level on record sending shares of home builder Pulte Homes (NYSE: PHM) tumbling.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more more than 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by nearly the same on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 4 points to 709.

Opening Bell Report

|

The markets opened lower as pending home sales fell to their lowest levels on record.  The Dow lost 22 points to 12,589 while Nasdaq fell 6 points to 2358.

On the upside

An analyst upgraded Ulta Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrance (Nasdaq: ULTA) on expected growth for the beauty store and salon chain.

The financial services sector rose on hopes of lower interest rates.  Shares of brokerage firms like FCStone Group (Nasdaq: FCSX) rallied after recent losses.

MSC Industrial Direct (NYSE: MSM) raised its 3rd quarter profit and revenue outlook due to strong demand for its industrial supplies.

On the downside

Shares of Washington Mutual (NYSE: WM) fell as details of a $7 billion capital infusion from an investment group  emerged.

Advanced Micro Devices (NYSE: AMD) announced plans to cut 10% of its workforce while warning of disappointing chip sales in the 1st quarter.  Shares of rival Intel (Nasdaq: INTC) also lost ground.

Alcoa (NYSE: AA), the world's 3rd largest aluminum producer, posted lower earnings that met expectations and offered a strong outlook for the year, but investors worried about costs and a weak dollar squeezing margins.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 4 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks slipped 2 points to 710.

Closing Bell Report

|

Rising oil prices tempered enthusiasm for a $5 billion investment in Washington Mutual by private equity firms.  The markets closed mixed with the Dow adding 3 points to 12,612 while Nasdaq lost 6 points to 2365.

On the upside

Pluristem Therapeutics (Nasdaq: PSTI) reported significant improvement in rats injected with the biotechnology company's experimental stroke treatment.

Leerink Swann analyst William Tanner expects sales for Elan's (NYSE: ELN) Tysabri to be better than expected as the multple sclerosis drug becomes a major treatment choice.

Citigroup lifted its price target for Temple-Inland (NYSE: TIN) and upgraded the company on expectations that containerboard and wood products prices will increase.

On the downside

Ev3 (Nasdaq: EVVV) announced the resignation of chief executive James M. Corbett and lowered its first quarter revenue outlook.

Credit Suisse downgraded Tesoro (NYSE: TSO).

Goldman Sachs analyst Sarah Friar downgraded BMC Software (NYSE: BMC) and removed the company from a recommended stocks list due to falling sales and a challenging economic environment.


In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 5 to 4 on the NYSE while decliners barely edged out advancers on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks slipped a point to 713.

Mid-Day Report

|

The markets continued to rise during the midday over reports that private equity firms may invest $5 billion in Washington Mutual.   The Dow leaped 111 points to 12,720 while Nasdaq climbed 19 points to 2390.

On the upside

Tissue based products maker LifeCell (Nasdaq: LIFC) agreed to be acquired by Kinetic Concepts (NYSE: KCI) for $1.7 billion in cash.

W. R. Grace & Co. (NYSE: GRA) will settle an asbestos suit against the company in an agreement valued at $3 billion.

Discover Financial Services (NYSE: DFS) will pay Citigroup (NYSE: C) $165 million to acquire its Diners Club International unit.

On the downside

ScanSource (Nasdaq: SCSC) blamed disappointing sales at its Catalyst Telecom unit as well as slowing international growth for slashing its sales guidance for the third quarter.

Bear Stearns analyst Joseph Greff lowered his earnings estimate for International Game Technology (NYSE: IGT) citing the downturn in the economy.

Piper Jaffray analyst Neely J. N. Tamminga downgraded Ann Taylor (NYSE: ANN) due to disappointing sales and a challenging economy.


In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 5 to 4 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks gained 4 points to 718.

Opening Bell Report

|

The markets opened higher on news that private equity firms were injecting capital into the financial services sector.   The Dow rose 41 points to 12,651 while Nasdaq added 7 points to 2378.

On the upside

Private equity firm TPG and other investors are planning to invest $5 billion into Washington Mutual (NYSE: WM), according to a Reuters report.  Citigroup (NYSE: C) and Wachovia (NYSE: WB) joined the rally.

Investors continued to snap up shares of coal producers with Alpha Natural Resources (NYSE: ANR) and Consol Energy (NYSE: CNX) leading the way.

Shares of KLA-Tencor (Nasdaq: KLAC) rose after an analyst upgraded the maker of semiconductor testing equipment.

On the downside

Yahoo (Nasdaq: YHOO) insisted on an improved offer in response to a letter from Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) which threatened to turn its bid for the Internet portal into a proxy fight.

JPMorgan downgraded Aruba Networks (Nasdaq: ARUN) which makes products for wireless computer networks due to the weak economy.

Shares of MGM Mirage (NYSE: MGM) fell after an analyst downgraded the hotel and casino operator due to an uncertain convention business environment in Las Vegas.


In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by 5 to 4 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 3 points to 717.

Closing Bell Report

|

The markets closed mixed over rising unemployment and greater than expected job losses.  The Dow dropped 17 points to 12,609 while Nasdaq gained 8 points to 2371.

On the upside

Draxis Health (Nasdaq: DRAX) agreed to be acquired by a subsidiary of Jubilant Organosys for approximately $255 million.

Landry's Restaurants (NYSE: LNY) received a revised offer letter from Chairman, President and Chief Executive Tilman J. Fertitta to take the company private.

Westlake Chemical (NYSE: WLK) promoted Vice President, Polyethylene Jeffrey L. Taylor to the position of Senior Vice President, Polyethylene.

On the downside

The chief financial officer of Orthofix International (Nasdaq: OFIX), Timothy Adams, suddenly resigned after less that six months on the job.

Shares of Washington Mutual (NYSE: WM) fell over concerns that more write-downs will further erode the already deteriorating credit markets.

Moody's Financial Services cited severe liquidity problems for downgrading Countrywide Financial's (NYSE: CFC) bank.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more nearly 5 to 4 on the NYSE while advancers barely edged out decliners on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added a fraction to 714.

Mid-Day Report

|

Despite an increase in the nation's unemployment rate and the loss of 80,000 jobs in March, the markets rose during the midday with the Dow gaining 29 points to 12,655.  Nasdaq climbed 16 points to 2379.

On the upside

"Mad Money's" Jim Cramer recommended First Solar (Nasdaq: FSLR) as the best solar company because it uses a less pricey proprietary thin film technology instead of expensive silicone.

Massey Energy (NYSE: MEE) cited rising coal prices for increasing its capital spending to further expansion projects.

LDK Solar (NYSE: LDK) signed multi-year wafer supply deals with Silcio SA and Arise Corp. as well as a polysilicon sourcing agreement.

On the downside

While full year revenue rose for DemandTec (Nasdaq: DMAN), the company reported wider losses.

Shares of General Motors (NYSE: GM) fell after a private equity group led by Appaloosa Management withdrew its $2.55 billion agreement to invest in auto parts supplier Dephi Corp.

Mesa Air Group (Nasdaq: MESA) reported a sharp 17% drop in traffic as capacity tumbled.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more nearly 3 to 2 on the NYSE and by more than 9 to 7 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 5 points to 718.

Opening Bell Report

|

The markets opened lower as investors mulled over the latest report on job losses.  The Dow lost 79 points to 12,543 while Nasdaq dropped 9 points to 2354.

On the upside

Agriculture-chemical company Mosaic (NYSE: MOS) posted results that handily beat estimates and helped lift its sector.

The possibility of the federal government propping up student loans fueled a rally among education providers like ITT Educational Services (NYSE: ESI) and Corinthian Colleges (Nasdaq: COCO).

Shares of U.S. coal producers like Arch Coal (NYSE: ACI) and Alpha Natural Resources (NYSE: ANR) continued to climb due to possible merger talks.

On the downside

Bear Stearns downgraded Citigroup (NYSE: C) and Bank of America (NYSE: BAC) due to anticipated write-downs related mortgages and leveraged subprime debt obligations.

AZZ Inc. (NYSE: AZZ) which manufactures electrical equipment and components for the power industry posted earnings that narrowly beat estimates, but missed its revenue goals.

Riverbed Technology (Nasdaq: RVBD) lowered its outlook due to slowing demand for its distributed computing services.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 4 on the NYSE and by nearly 4 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks slipped 3 points to 710.

Closing Bell Report

|

The markets edged up to close modeslty higher after Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke explained to the Senate Banking Committee that the Fed assisted the J. P. Morgan purchase of Bear Stearns in order to protect the nation's economy.  The Dow gained 20 points to 12,626 while Nasdaq rose 2 points to 2363.

On the upside

Sallie Mae (NYSE: SLM) appointed president and chief executive of Pine Brook Road Partners Howard Newman to its board of directors.

Lazard Capital downgraded VMware (NYSE: VMW).

Patriot Coal (NYSE: PCX) will pay approximately $559 million to acquire Magnum Coal.

On the downside

HNI (NYSE: HNI) blamed the economy for cutting the first quarter guidance of its office furniture business.

Lazard (NYSE: LAZ) introduced three new mutual funds for both institutional investors as well as individual investors.

Shares of Superior Offshore International (Nasdaq: DEEP) continued to fall.  The companied delayed filing its annual report, warned of liquidity problems and acknowledged that it is considering the sale of the company.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 7 to 5 on the NYSE while decliners edged out advancers by nearly 10 to 9 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added a point to 714.

Mid-Day Report

|

The markets traded higher during the midday with the Dow gaining 34 points to 12,640 as Fed chief Ben Bernanke explained the Fed's decision to provide up to $30 billion for the purchase of Bear Stearns by J. P. Morgan.  Nasdaq added 5 points to 2366.

On the upside

USEC (NYSE: USU) purchased a uranium enrichment facility in Tennessee that is valued at $13 million for $5 million.

MF Global (NYSE: MF) named a former executive of TD Ameritrade (Nasdaq: AMTD) to the position of chief financial officer.

Schering-Plough (NYSE: SGP) announced restructuring plans to lower expenses including the elimination of approximately 5,500 positions.

On the downside

Credit Suisse analyst William Stein downgraded Plexus (Nasdaq: PLXS) saying that the stock price was too high and sales are expected to slow.

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services, Fitch Ratings and Moody's Investors Service all downgraded the credit rating of mortgage insurer Triad Guaranty (Nasdaq: TGIC).

X-Rite (Nasdaq: XRIT) warned of lower first quarter revenue due to weak economic conditions.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 10 to 9 on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added a fraction to 713.

Opening Bell Report

|

Jobless claims climbed to their highest levels in two years while the markets opened lower.  The Dow lost 47 points to 12,558 while Nasdaq fell 14 points to 2346.

On the upside

Software giant Oracle (Nasdaq: ORCL) priced $5 billion in notes bearing interest rates of 4.95 to 6.5% to fund its purchase of BEA Systems (Nasdaq: BEAS).

AngioDynamics (Nasdaq: ANGO) posted higher profits that beat forecasts while settling a patent lawsuit for laser treatment of varicose veins.   The company will make a one-time payment of $7 million to Diomed.

A Goldman Sachs analyst upgraded Micron Technology (NYSE: MU) after its Asian rival raised memory chip prices.

On the downside

MEMC Electronic Materials (NYSE: WFR) lowered its 1st quarter outlook due to production problems.  The company makes wafers for the semiconductor and solar power industries.

Shares of Garmin (Nasdaq: GRMN) fell sharply to a new 52-week low after its CFO warned that revenues would drop more than expected from last quarter's holiday levels.

Shares of Blackbaud (Nasdaq: BLKB) dropped after an analyst downgraded the maker of software to nonprofit organizations due to an environment of declining donations from worried consumers.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 4 to 3 on the NYSE and by nearly 4 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks slipped 2 points to 710.

Closing Bell Report

|

The markets reversed directions to close modestly lower after Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke warned of a possible recession.  The Dow dropped 49 points to 12,606 while Nasdaq slipped a point to 2361. 

On the upside

Emcore (Nasdaq: EMKR) received a $4.6 million follow-on order from Concentration Solar la Mancha of Mazanares for solar cell receiver assemblies.

Shares of Yingli Green Holding (NYSE: YGE) rose as a solar power conference convened in Munich, Germany.

Analysts are optimistic that Talbots' (NYSE: TLB) plans to lower expenses, streamline operations and improve merchandise selections will be successful.

On the downside

Sotheby's (NYSE: BID) pulled a photogenic drawing from an auction scheduled for next Monday to allow scholars more time to research the origin of the image.

Shares of Thornburg Mortgage (NYSE: TMA) fell after the Mortgage Bankers Association reported a sharp 28.7% drop in mortgage applications last week.

Stanford Research initiated coverage of Intermec (NYSE: IN) with a Sell rating.


In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 7 to 5 on the NYSE and by nearly 5 to 4 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 2 points to 712.

Mid-Day Report

|

Although Fed chief Ben Bernanke warned of a possible recession, the markets traded higher during the midday with the Dow gaining 20 points to 12,675.  Nasdaq climbed 15 points to 2378. 

On the upside

Although fourth quarter earnings fell for CarMax (NYSE: KMX) as new vehicle sales dropped, revenue rose to surpass estimates.

Shares of Solarfun Power Holdings (Nasdaq: SOLF) rose as a solar power conference convened in Munich, Germany.

Packeteer (Nasdaq: PKTR) rejected Eliott Associates' unsolicited bid to acquire the company prompting an upgrade.

On the downside

Superior Offshore International (Nasdaq: DEEP) delayed filing its annual report, warned that the company is experiencing a severe cash shortfall and is exploring the possible sale of the company.

Shares of The Bank of New York Mellon Corp. (NYSE: BK) tumbled after Friedman, Billings, Ramsey analyst Paul Miller warned that banks must raise capital quickly or be subject to regulatory review.

After an internal review, VeriFone Holdings (NYSE: PAY) revealed that earnings for the first nine months of fiscal 2007 were greatly overstated and announced the resignation of chief fnancial officer Barry Zwarenstein.


In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by 7 to 5 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 3 points to 714.

Opening Bell Report

|

The markets opened mixed with the Dow losing 12 points to 12,642 while Nasdaq added 7 points to 2369.  Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke warned Congress of a shrinking economy for the first half of the year.

On the upside

Best Buy (NYSE: BBY) posted slightly lower earnings, but results for the nation's largest consumer electronics retailer beat estimates.  Same-store sales declined, but international sales more than offset the weakness.

Immucor  (Nasdaq: BLUD) reported 3rd quarter profits that beat expectations.  Analysts promptly upgraded the blood testing equipment maker.

Shares of Micron Technology (NYSE: MU) rose ahead of its earnings report later today.

On the downside

Shares of biotechnology company Medarex (Nasdaq: MEDX) lost ground after a rival with a similar drug reported negative results which bode ill for this drug research company.

LoJack (Nasdaq: LOJN) lowered its guidance for the year blaming a decline in overall car sales.  The vehicle tracking device maker was promptly downgraded by analysts.

Crocs (Nasdaq: CROX), the maker of colorful plastic shoes, was downgraded by an analyst due to weak U.S. demand leading to an inventory build-up.


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancer by a slim margin on the NYSE and by nearly 5 to 4 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 2 points to 708.

Closing Bell Report

|

The markets surged to close sharply higher with the Dow soaring 391 points to 12,654 as oil prices retreated.  Nasdaq leaped 84 points to 2363.

On the upside

Cell Genesys (Nasdaq: CEGE) partnered with Takeda Pharmaceutical to jointly develop and market Cell Genesys' prostate cancer treatment GVAX immunotherapy.

Canadian regulators approved Progenics Pharmaceuticals' (Nasdaq: PGNX) opiod induced constipation treatment Relistor.

Shares of Lennar (NYSE: LEN) rose as home construction fell for the 24th month in a row.

On the downside

TransCanada (NYSE: TRP) will pay approximately $2.8 billion to acquire the Ravenswood Generating Facility.

Moneygram International (NYSE: MGI) reported a quarterly loss as expenses soared.

American Vanguard (NYSE: AVD) blamed inclement weather for warning that first quarter earnings will be less than last year.


In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 5 to 1 on the NYSE and by 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks jumped 23 points to 711.

Mid-day Report

|

Lehman Bros. raised $4 billion through the sale of covertible preferred shares to boost the markets higher during the midday with the Dow soaring 319 points to 12,581.  Nasdaq leaped 66 points to 2345.

On the upside

InterMune (Nasdaq: ITMN) reported positive results from an early stage drug trial of its hepatitis C treatment ITMN-191.

CSK Auto (NYSE: CAO) agreed to be acquired by O'Reilly Automotive (Nasdaq: ORLY) in a cash and stock deal valued at approximately $500 million.

Goldman Sachs cut their price target for Citigroup (NYSE: C) and slashed their earnings guidance saying that the company is expected to write down $12 billlion in the first quarter.  However, the stock price rose after both Lehman Bros. (NYSE: LEH) and UBS (NYSE: UBS) took significant write-downs.

On the downside

Jefferies & Co. analyst Daniel Furtado downgraded MCG Capital (Nasdaq: MCGC) after the commercial finance company failed to get a $200 million credit line renewed.

KKR Financial Holdings (NYSE: KFN) announced plans to sell 20 million shares of common stock through a public offering prompting a downgrade.

A Federal Aviation Administration investigation revealed that AAR (NYSE: AIR) improperly maintained landing gear parts used on a number of Boeing planes.


In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 4 to 1 on the NYSE and by 5 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks leaped 16 points to 704.

Opening Bell Report

|

Aggressive efforts to raise cash by financial services company lifted the markets at the opening bell with the Dow soaring over 200 points to 12,470.  Nasdaq leaped 40 points to 2319.

On the upside

Lehman Brothers (NYSE: LEH) expected to raise $4 billion to shore up its balance sheet by selling 3 million convertible preferred shares.

UBS (NYSE: UBS) posted a $12 billion loss and announced plans to raise $15 billion in new capital.  The chairman of the bank also promised to step down, but not before working to stabilize the company.  Meanwhile, Deutsche Bank (NYSE: DB), Germany's largest bank, wrote down $4 billion in losses.

Shares of Buffalo Wild Wings (Nasdaq: BWLD) soared after an analyst upgraded the restaurant chain due to cost-cutting measures and valuation.

On the downside

Imperial Industries (Nasdaq: IPII) posted lower sales and a loss versus year-ago profits due to a sharp decline in residential building activity in Florida.

Agricultural chemical companies were under pressure with shares of Monsanto (NYSE: MON) and Mosaic (NYSE: MOS) falling sharply.

Alpha Natural Resources (NYSE: ANR) announced a $460 million raise through the sale of senior convertible notes.


In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 4 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks leaped 10 points to 698.

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