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Tuesday's Winners & Losers: National Discount Brokers, Apache, Altera, Xilinx

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  • M&A
  • Earnings/revenue
  • Analyst actions
  • Offerings/stock actions
  • Miscellany
  • By the numbers
  • Updated from 3:27 p.m.

    Silicon Graphics (SGI), maker of computer workstations and supercomputers, warned that its first-quarter results will fall short of expectations mainly because of material shortages. The company said it expects to post a loss of 28 cents to 30 cents a share, including a gain of about $50 million from the sale of some assets. The current five-analyst estimated loss was for 14 cents a share. The company also set a $50 million share buyback plan.

    This morning, Goldman Sachs cut the company's 2001 EPS view to a loss of 45 cents a share from a profit of 10 cents. Silicon Graphics closed down 31 cents, or 8.1%, to $3.56.

    Information storage provider Storage Technology (STK) said it expects third-quarter earnings to be affected by equipment shortages, though it should report a profit, excluding restructuring charges. The six-analyst estimate calls for earnings of 6 cents a share.

    Goldman cut Storage Technology's 2000 EPS view to 20 cents from 42 cents. PaineWebber reduced its 12-month price target to $11 from $14 and cut its 2000 EPS view to 21 cents from 42 and its 2001 prediction to 82 cents from 90 cents. Storage Technology ended the trading day down $1.69, or 13.8%, to $10.56.

    Mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures

    Metromedia Fiber Network (MFNX) is buying independently owned SiteSmith in a stock swap valued at $1.36 billion. Depending on Metromedia's price before the merger, SiteSmith will receive between 55 million and 62.5 million Metromedia shares. According to yesterday's Metromedia closing price of $21.81, the deal is valued at $1.36 billion. Metromedia ended down $2.19, or 10%, to $19.63.

    National Discount Brokers (NDB) went up almost 90% after it received a proposal from a Deutsche Bank affiliate to acquire the company for $49 a share in cash.

    Deutsche Bank, through its affiliates, already owns about 16% of the online brokerage. National Discount Brokers also said it has received inquiries from other companies concerning a merger or a possible acquisition. The board of NDB is reviewing the possibilities. NDB closed up $22.44, or 88.9%, to $47.69.

    It's a done deal between Nokia (NOK) and DualStar Communications (DSTR)? Well, it's Finnish. Har, har, har.

    Nokia, telecom-equipment maker and pride of Finland, announced that it had made a deal with DualStar to provide the American broadband firm with high-speed broadband digital subscriber lines (DSL in layman's terms). This equipment is essential if DualStar is to provide high-speed connections, entertainment services and satellite-based television to its customers. No financial details regarding the three-year agreement are yet available.

    Nokia closed down $2, or 5.4%, to $35, while DualStar ended down 22 cents, or 14%, to $1.34.


    After Monday's Close

    Royal Dutch/Shell Group has agreed to buy 1.64 million shares, or $100 million worth of oil exploration and production company Apache (APA) as part of a deal in which both companies will acquire Fletcher Challenge Energy. Fletcher has operations in New Zealand and Brunei. Apache closed up $7.94, or 14.3%, to $63.50.

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    Earnings/revenue reports and previews

    Central Parking (CPC) said it expects to report fourth-quarter earnings below expectations, as revenue dips below year-ago levels. The four-analyst estimate is for 29 cents. The company said revenue was affected by the loss of locations resulting from its 1999 acquisition of Allright Holdings, among other factors. Central Parking closed down $1.81, or 9.3%, to $17.63.

    Carpal tunnel hurts. Eyestrain is not much fun. And missing estimates, well, that's not much better, is it?

    CompX International (CIX), maker of ergonomic computer-support systems that prevent such conditions, said it expects third-quarter earnings of 39 cents to 40 cents a share prior to charges, missing the 44 cent First Call/Thomson Financial estimate. And what is to blame? Well, the company said the weak euro and weak sales were prime culprits.

    CompX will officially report results Oct. 19, when it also expects to announce revenues of $63 million. CompX closed today down $1.69, or 8.8%, to $17.50.

    Bank-holding company Firstar (FSR) reported third-quarter earnings of 39 cents a share, in line with the 25-analyst estimate and above the year-ago 32-cent result. Firstar closed down 69 cents, or 3.8%, to $17.25.

    Infosys (INFY) posted some good news. It reported second-quarter earnings of 23 cents a share, beating the five-analyst estimate of 20 cents and up from year-ago earnings of 11 cents a share.

    The Indian computer-software firm said the better-than-expected earnings were helped in part by exchange-rate fluctuations. It said the rupee's depreciation contributed to an increase in income from software development.

    Also, the company said it has invested a total of $1.96 million in two tech companies -- British Virgin Island-based media firm Asia Net Media and Austrian mobile phone firm Alpha Thinx Mobile Phone Services. Infosys closed down $6.25, or 5.2%, to $114.

    Insert ding-dinging, frantic screaming and free alcoholic beverages here. International Game Technology (IGT), which makes computerized casino products such as video slot machines, announced that its fiscal 2000 revenue will top $1 billion for the first time in the company's history. Quarterly earnings will hit the street Nov. 7, but in the meantime, investors can feel free to jump in place over the news, clutching a plastic cup filled with nickels. International Game closed up 56 cents, or 1.6%, to $35.

    Mueller Industries (MLI), a veritable smorgasbord of businesses including brass, copper and plastic manufacturers, a short-line railroad and natural resources, announced that third-quarter earnings would come in at 50 cents a share, less than last year's 66 cents and lower than the First Call/Thomson Financial estimate of 51 cents.

    A few weeks ago, Mueller put out an earnings warning and felt the wrath of investors , who dropped the company close to $7, nearly a quarter of its value, on huge volume. Mueller ended the day up 6 cents, or 0.3%, to $22.44.


    After Monday's Close

    Drugstore chain Rite Aid (RAD) posted a loss of $1.87, compared to the year-ago loss of 60 cents a diluted share. Rite Aid closed down 81 cents, or 20.3%, to $3.19.

    Chemical-coatings manufacturer RPM (RPM) said its first-quarter earnings will be in line with the six-analyst estimate of 28 cents. RPM closed up 13 cents, or 1.4%, to $9.19.

    E.W. Scripps (SSP) posted third-quarter earnings of 46 cents a share, beating the eight-analyst estimate of 40 cents and up from year-ago earnings of 36 cents a share.

    The company attributed the increase to strong revenue and cash-flow growth at its Food Network and Home and Garden Television, and better-than-expected numbers from its TV station group. E.W. Scripps closed up $2.44, or 4.7%, to $54.19.

    WestPoint Stevens (WXS) cut its third-quarter earnings forecast -- again. Now the company expects earnings of 55 cents to 60 cents share because of "further erosion of retail sales in the last week of the quarter." In September, the company had said it anticipated earnings of 65 cents a share.

    First Call/Thomson Financial revised downward its nine-analyst estimate to 65 cents a share from 74 cents. Year-ago earnings were 67 cents a share. WestPoint Stevens said it plans to update its guidance for fourth-quarter earnings and sales upon the release of third-quarter results, set for Oct. 19. WestPoint closed down $1.75, or 16.5%, to $8.88.

    Xeikon (XEIK), a Belgian printing-systems manufacturer, cautioned that it expects an operating loss for the third quarter with revenue of about $42 million. Last year, the company reported earnings of 11 cents a share, with revenue of $52.9 million. Xeikon ended the day down $2.19, or 16.9%, to $10.75.

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    Analyst actions

    Altera (ALTR) and Xilinx (XLNX) were cut this morning by Salomon Smith Barney to outperform from buy and by Lehman Brothers to neutral from outperform.

    Solly said it downgraded the stock because of continued deterioration in the market for semiconductor chips. Lehman said it believes revenue growth rates for the next two quarters are likely to slow as end customers and contract manufacturers rebalance inventory and order rates.

    Altera's 12-month price target was reduced to $60 from $68 at Salomon and lowered to $55 from $75 at Lehman. The 12-month price target of Xilinx was cut to $100 from $110 at Salomon and to $90 from $100 at Lehman.

    Altera closed down $11.06, or 27.1%, to $29.81; Xilinx was down $16.69, or 21.1%, to $62.44.

    Upgrades

    Allegheny Energy (AYE): UP to long-term buy from accumulate at Merrill Lynch; price target: $43. Allegheny closed up $1.88, or 5%, to $39.38.

    Apache (APA): 12-month price target UP to $75 from $70 at Credit Suisse First Boston and 2001 EPS estimate UP to $4.25 from $3.97. 2001 EPS estimate UP to $5.35 from $4.90 at Bear Stearns. As noted above, Apache closed up $7.94, or 14.3%, to $63.50.

    Calpine (CPN): six- to 12-month price target UP to $140 from $115 at CSFB and 2000 EPS estimate to $1.80 from $1.61. Also, 2001 EPS estimate UP to $2.25 from $1.90; 2002 EPS estimate to $2.90 from $2.57; and 2003 EPS estimate to $4 from $3.75. Calpine closed down $1.38, or 1.4%, to $95.

    Ryder System (R): UP to attractive from neutral at Bear Stearns; third-quarter EPS estimate UP to 61 cents a share from 56 cents; and fourth-quarter EPS estimate UP to 63 cents a share from 60 cents. But the firm cut 2001 EPS estimate DOWN to $2 a share from $2.15. Ryder closed up $1, or 6.3%, to $17.

    Spinnaker Exploration (SKE): 12-month price target UP to $42 from $40 at CSFB; fourth-quarter EPS estimate UP to 84 cents from 77 cents a share; 2000 EPS estimate to $1.85 from $1.77 and 2001 EPS estimate to $1.49 from $1.40. Spinnaker closed up $3.31, or 9.7%, to $37.50.

    Downgrades

    Boston Scientific (BSX): DOWN to hold from accumulate at Prudential Securities. Price target: DOWN to $20 from $25. Boston Scientific closed down 13 cents, or 0.8%, to $14.94.

    DeVry (DV): DOWN to neutral from attractive at Bear Stearns. DeVry closed down $3.13, or 8%, to $35.88.

    Safeco (SAFC): third-quarter earnings DOWN to 7 cents from 30 cents a share at CSFB; 2000 earnings estimates DOWN to 55 cents a share from 92 cents and 2001 earnings estimates DOWN to $2 from $2.25. The stock closed up 6 cents, or 0.3%, to $24.56.

    Group Moves

    J.P. Morgan started coverage of five paper products companies:

    • Bowater (BOW): NEW buy. Bowater closed down $1.31, or 2.7%, to $47.19.

    • International Paper (IP): NEW buy. International Paper closed down 94 cents, or 3.2%, to $28.38.

    • Mead (MEA): NEW long-term buy. Mead ended the day down 6 cents, or 0.3%, to $23.

    • Weyerhaeuser (WY): NEW market performer. The stock closed down 69 cents, or 1.8%, to $38.50.

    • Georgia-Pacific (GP): NEW market performer. Georgia Pacific closed down 19 cents, or 0.8%, to $23.81.

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    Offerings and stock actions

    Park Electrochemical (PKE) said its directors declared a 3-for-2 stock split and increased its quarterly cash dividend 12.5% to 9 cents a share on a presplit basis. Park closed down $2.69, or 5.2%, to $48.69.

    This little piggy is going to market. Nextron Communications, the management software making unit of Internet holding company Safeguard Scientifics (SFE), said it has filed paperwork with the Securities and Exchange Commission to begin trading publicly. The IPO, with an as-yet-undetermined number of shares and price, will be underwritten by ING Barings. Safeguard closed up 56 cents, or 3.3%, to $17.75.

    You gotta love it when your share of Paychex (PAYX) gets bigger. Today the Rochester, N.Y.-based payroll processor upped its dividend to 9 cents per share from 6 cents per share, citing a strong cash position and earnings growth. The dividend is payable Nov. 15 to all shareholders of record as of Nov. 1. Paychex ended the day down $1.81, or 3.5%, to $49.56.

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    Miscellany

    There once was a time when a simple "color TV, vacancy" sign was enough to lure weary travelers off the interstate and into a single economy hotel room. But hoteliers are packing more and more high-tech and tempting amenities into their rooms.

    So, look for Hilton Hotels (HLT) to add "Interactive Television" to that flashing sign out front. The Wall Street Journal reported that the company has formed a joint venture with LodgeNet Entertainment (LNET), a South Dakota-based seller of movies, video games and Internet access in hotels across the U.S., to create a new partnership billed as InnMedia. The venture will put high-speed Internet access and interactive television into rooms, replacing the humdrum commercials on sets with tailored ads that target certain travelers, such as convention guests.

    The service will end up in some Hilton hotel rooms before the year ends, rolling out first with wireless keyboards that enable users to order movies via the television and to check email. Ultimately, InnMedia is to become something of an interactive concierge and master control for the hotel room, controlling everything from the thermostat to the lighting.

    The deal is split 50-50, with both parties chipping in $1 million each to kick-start the venture. Hilton closed down 19 cents, or 1.8%, to $10.25, and LodgeNet was down $2.75, or 11.2%, to $21.88.

    IBM (IBM) announced that it would spend $2.5 billion to build an advanced chip-making plant as part of a $5 billion expansion. IBM closed down $3.06, or 2.6%, to $114.88.

    Lycos (LCOS), an Internet media network, said its music site has begun selling digital downloads of music by Santana, Christina Aguilera and other BMG Entertainment recording artists. Lycos ended the day up $1.31, or 2.6%, to $51.69.

    Novartis Pharmaceuticals (NVS) announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved its drug fluvastatin. The therapy provides help to patients with lipid disorders who are at risk for heart disease. Novartis closed up 19 cents, or 0.5%, to $38.69.

    OpenTV (OPTV), which produces software for digital interactive TV, said it has won a contract from cable TV firm United Pan-Europe Communications. The stock closed down $1.25, or 4.5%, to $26.44.

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    By the Numbers

    5 Biggest NYSE Percentage Winners
    Name Price Change %
    National Discount Brokers (NDB) 47 11/16
    22 7/16

    88.9%
    Apache (APA) 63 1/2
    7 15/16

    14.3%
    Coca-Cola Femsa (KOF) 20 11/16
    2 3/16

    11.8%
    VISX (EYE) 24 1/4
    2 1/4

    10.2%
    King Pharmaceuticals (KG) 42 15/16
    3 7/8

    9.9%

    5 Biggest NYSE Percentage Losers
    Name Price Change %
    WestPoint Stevens (WXS) 8 7/8
    1 3/4

    16.5%
    Fairchild Semiconductor (FCS) 21 1/4
    4

    15.8%
    Storage Technology (STK) 10 9/16
    1 11/16

    13.8%
    Entravision (EVC) 11 5/8
    1 3/4

    13.1%
    Robert Half (RHI) 33
    4 5/8

    12.3%

    5 Biggest Nasdaq Percentage Winners
    Name Price Change %
    Accelerated Networks (ACCL) 13 1/4
    2 11/16

    25.4%
    CrossWorlds (CWLD) 17 3/8
    3 3/8

    24.1%
    Extensity (EXTN) 13 3/8
    2 5/16

    20.9%
    SmartDisk (SMDK) 12
    2

    20%
    Swiss Army (SABI) 6 7/16
    1

    18.4%

    5 Biggest Nasdaq Percentage Losers
    Name Price Change %
    Akorn (AKRN) 5 3/4
    4 5/16

    42.9%
    Altera (ALTR) 29 13/16
    11 1/16

    27.1%
    QuickLogic (QUIK) 11 1/16
    4 1/16

    26.9%
    McAfee.com (MCAF) 9 3/4
    2 15/16

    23.2%
    Navistar (NAVI) 14 3/4
    4 5/16

    22.6%

    The data on NYSE and Nasdaq percent winners and losers are filtered to exclude stocks whose previous day's volume was less than 25,000 shares; whose last price was less than 5; and whose net change was less than 1/2.

    5 Biggest Dow Point Winners
    Name Price Change %
    Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) 94 5/8
    3 5/16

    3.63%
    ExxonMobil (XOM) 93 5/16
    2 3/16

    2.40%
    3M (MMM) 93 1/8
    1 3/8

    1.50%
    United Technologies (UTX) 71 13/16
    1 3/4

    2.50%
    Merck (MRK) 76 7/8
    1 9/16

    2.07%

    5 Biggest Dow Point Losers
    Name Price Change %
    J.P. Morgan (JPM) 146 3/4
    5 1/8

    3.37%
    IBM (IBM) 114 7/8
    3 1/16

    2.60%
    General Motors (GM) 59 11/16
    2 9/16

    4.12%
    Citigroup (C) 51
    1 5/8

    3.09%
    Hewlett-Packard (HWP) 89 7/16
    1 1/2

    1.65%

    Dow point gain and loss data are based on New York closing prices and do not reflect late composite trading.

    Large-Cap Nasdaq Movers
    Name Price Change %
    Cisco (CSCO) 51 1/8
    3 11/16

    6.87%
    Dell (DELL) 24 1/4
    1 13/16

    7.09%
    Ericsson (ERICY) 14 1/8
    7/8

    5.86%
    Intel (INTC) 37 9/16
    1 13/16

    4.64%
    Microsoft (MSFT) 54 1/4
    1/8

    0.23%
    Oracle (ORCL) 64 5/8
    2 3/4

    4.12%
    Qualcomm (QCOM) 79 11/16
    9/16

    0.71%
    Sun Microsystems (SUNW) 103 3/16
    4 7/16

    4.15%
    WorldCom (WCOM) 26 9/16
    5/16

    1.20%
    Yahoo! (YHOO) 82 11/16
    1/2

    0.51%

    Back to top

    Eric Gillin, Diane Hess, Eileen Kinsella and Betsy Riley contributed to this column.

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