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Stocks in Motion: TXU

Shares of Asset Acceptance Capital (AACC) were among Nasdaq's losers Tuesday, falling 22% after the purchaser and collector of charged-off consumer debt posted third-quarter results that disappointed Wall Street.

The company earned $13.7 million, or 37 cents a share, on revenue of $64 million. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call expected earnings of 42 cents a share and revenue of $68.6 million. In last year's third quarter, Asset Acceptance earned $12.8 million, or 34 cents a share, on revenue of $56 million. Cash collections in the most recent period came in at $78.2 million, up from $66.8 million a year ago, but down from $84.9 million in the second quarter. "Our overall growth in cash collections slowed modestly in the third quarter reflecting a lower growth rate in call center collections," the company said. Shares were trading down $5.93 to $20.56.

TXU (TXU) shares dropped 9% after the Texas energy provider posted lower-than-anticipated third-quarter earnings. The company's net income fell 15% to $565 million from $665 million a year earlier. Earnings per share rose to $2.31 from $1.34, reflecting fewer outstanding shares. Excluding special items and discontinued operations, TXU posted earnings of $574 million, or $2.35 a share, up from $388 million, or $1.32 a share, on a comparable basis a year earlier. Analysts, on average, expected earnings of $2.46 a share, before items. The company's operating revenue increased 16% to $3.19 billion from $2.74 billion last year.

Despite the weaker-than-expected third-quarter earnings, TXU raised its outlook for 2005. The company sees earnings of $6.50 to $6.70 a share, up from an earlier range of $6.25 to $6.45. Wall Street projects earnings per share of $6.58 for the year. TXU shares recently changed hands at $91.68, down $9.07.

Administaff (ASF) rose 6% after the human-resources company posted better-than-expected third-quarter results. The company's earnings rose to $7.2 million, or 26 cents a share, from $3.6 million, or 14 cents a share, a year earlier. Sales grew to $285.2 million from $235.9 million. Analysts projected earnings of 23 cents a share and sales of $284.2 million.
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