Wednesday's Small-Cap Winners & Losers
Although U.S. small-caps didn't produce many winners today, they certainly led the losses. Hailing from Walnut Creek, Calif., Central Garden & Pet (CENT) took a 22% hit to $5.04 after reporting earnings for fourth quarter 2007. Sales were down 5% to $401 million and income from operations tumbled 53% to $10.1 million year over year. The pet and garden products manufacturer posted a loss of $1.7 million, or 2 cents a share, down from a profit of $6 million, or 8 cents a share, in the year-ago quarter. Analysts polled by Thomson financial were expecting earnings of 3 cents a share.
Shares of Bidz.com (BIDZ) slipped for the second day in a row as CEO David Zinberg responded Tuesday evening to allegations online stock watchdog Citron Research. Citron had published a report Monday alleging that the Culver City, Calif., online jeweler engages in shill bidding during auctions for its jewels, that inventory levels are skyrocketing and that Zinberg himself is paid 30,000 Bidz shares a month. According to an Associated Press report, Zinberg denied the claims, calling Citron's report "untruthful and negative." Shares nonetheless dropped 9.5% to $10.76.
Also suffering was Spring House, Pa., business credit card vendor Advanta (ADVNB). Shares of the company slumped 13% to $9.59 on a downgrade by Friedman Billings to underperform from market perform.
One Chinese loser, Shanghai's Acorn (ATV) dropped 15% to $10.40 on disappointing third-quarter earnings. Acorn posted non-GAAP profits of $6.1 million, or 6 cents a share, vs. $4.5 million, or 6 cents a share, in 2006. Third-quarter ordinary-share earnings translated to 18 cents per American Depositary Share. Two analysts polled by Thomson Financial were expecting earnings of 22 cents per ADS.
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