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Stocks in Motion: Checkers

Updated from 11:28 a.m. EDT

Shares of Checkers Drive-In Restaurants (CHKR) were among the Nasdaq's winners Monday, rising 11.9% after the company said it is exploring strategic alternatives, which may include the sale of the company.

Checkers retained Citigroup Global Markets as its financial adviser to help identify and evaluate strategic alternatives that could enhance shareholder value, the company said. Checkers said that its current stock price is not representative of the company's financial performance. In addition to the possible sale of the company, Checkers said other strategies could include acquisitions or significant share repurchases. Shares traded up $1.43 to $13.43.

Overnite (OVNT) rose 43.8% after the trucking company agreed to be acquired by UPS (UPS) for about $1.25 billion in cash, or $43.25 a share. The deal, which represents a 46% premium to Overnite's closing price of $29.58 a share on Friday, will allow UPS to expand its business by offering North American customers a variety of less-than-truckload and truckload services.

Overnite posted earnings of $63.3 million on sales of $1.65 billion during 2004. "Overnite is a perfect strategic fit for our company," UPS said. "We want to offer our customers the broadest portfolio of transportation and logistics services available from a single source, and this is an important capability that we needed to have." The deal is expected to close during the third quarter of 2005. Shares traded up $12.94 to $42.52.

Shares of Limited Brands (LTD) traded actively after the company posted first-quarter earnings below expectations and said second-quarter earnings would be below forecasts. The retailer earned $23.1 million, or 6 cents a share, on sales of $1.98 billion. Analysts surveyed by Thomson First Call were expecting earnings of 10 cents a share on sales of $1.99 billion. A year ago the company earned $96.6 million, or 19 cents a share, on sales of $1.98 billion. Excluding a one-time gain, the company would have earned 13 cents a share a year ago. Looking ahead, Limited forecast second-quarter earnings of 23 cents to 25 cents a share. Analysts are expecting earnings of 29 cents a share. Shares traded up 2 cents to $20.45 on volume of almost 10 million shares, or about five times its daily average.
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