Stocks to Watch: Websense Jumps, Precise Software Plunges
WinnersBCE (BCE) was gaining 22% to $17.82 after the company said it would cut long-term funding to Teleglobe and announced that it had named a new chief executive. BCE said Jean C. Monty resigned as chairman and CEO, effective immediately. Michael J. Sabia will be the new chief executive and Richard J. Currie will take over as nonexecutive chairman. Gundle/SLT Environmental (GSE), a provider of geosynthetic lining systems for waste management, mining and other uses, was up 25% to $7.75 a day after the company reported a first-quarter profit of $22.3 million, or $2.02 a share, including a gain from the purchase of Serrot International. Before items, Gundle lost $1.6 million, or 14 cents a share, including a charge of 5 cents a share.
Closeout retailer Mazel Stores (MAZL) was up big for the second straight day on the heels of the company's strong quarterly earnings report. The stock was gaining 24% to $6.05 Wednesday, a day after adding 50% to its value. PEC Solutions (PECS), a professional technology services firm, was rising 17% to $22.04 as analysts upgraded the stock following its latest earnings announcement. The company earned 14 cents a share in the latest quarter, up from 10 cents a year ago. Pixelworks (PXLW), a maker of integrated circuits for computer displays, was better by 18% to $10.65 after its quarterly report. According to generally accepted accounting principles, the company lost 9 cents a share in the first quarter, compared with a loss of 87 cents in the same period a year ago. Excluding items, the company earned 3 cents. Websense (WBSN) was climbing 22% to $26.27 a day after the company, a designer of software that helps firms track worker productivity, reported first-quarter earnings of 11 cents a share, reversing a loss of 2 cents a share a year earlier.
LosersHormel (HRL) was dropping 7% to $25.22 after the food company lowered its second-quarter earnings guidance to a range of 20 cents to 24 cents a share. Previously, the company expected to earn 30 cents to 34 cents, and analysts are looking for a bottom line of 31 cents. The company blamed the expected shortfall on a Russian ban on poultry imports, which "has caused a temporary oversupply of protein in the market. Retailers have been aggressively promoting low prices for chicken, which has resulted in an oversupply of other proteins," Hormel said in a press release. "These factors, along with production expansion in the turkey industry, have intensified the short-term pricing pressure on turkey and pork." Hard disk drive maker Maxtor (MXO) fell 9% to $6.57 after the company swung to a loss in the latest quarter from a profit in the comparable prior-year period. Railroad operator Norfolk Southern (NSC) was losing 6% to $21.60 after the company said first-quarter income from continuing operations climbed to $86 million, or 22 cents a share, from $61 million, or 16 cents a share, a year earlier, excluding a gain. Analysts were expecting earnings of 23 cents in the latest quarter. Revenue slipped to just under $1.5 billion from $1.54 billion in the year-ago quarter. Biopharmaceutical company Novavax (NVAX) was diving 24% to $7.99 after a small research house cut its rating on the stock. The research outfit, ThinkEquity, downgraded the stock to buy from strong buy, citing worries about the company's cancellation of a planned marketing trip. PDF Solutions (PDFS), a provider of semiconductor process-design integration technologies and services, was losing 22% to $13.15 after posting first-quarter revenue of $11.5 million, and earnings, excluding items, of 6 cents a share. Precise Software (PRSE) was plunging 31% to $13.10 a day after the company reported quarterly revenue that came in short of expectations. The company said first-quarter revenue rose 49% to $17.1 million, while earnings, before items, totaled 2 cents a share. Analysts expected a top line of $17.9 million and earnings of 2 cents. At least two analysts cut their price targets and revenue estimates for the company after the report.
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