United Rentals will buy RSC for $18 a share, a 58% premium to RSC's closing price Thursday of $11.37.
Darden Restaurants (DRI) earned $54.1 million, or 41 cents a share, from continuing operations in the fiscal second quarter, down from year-earlier earnings of $75.8 million, or 54 cents, a year earlier.Sales were $1.83 billion, up from $1.73 billion last year. Analysts expected Darden to earn 41 cents a share in the quarter. Darden, the owner of Olive Garden and Red Lobster restaurants, affirmed it expects combined U.S. same-restaurant sales growth in fiscal 2012 of about 2% to 3%. It expects total sales growth of between 6% and 7% in fiscal 2012, and affirmed it anticipates per-share earnings growth of 4% to 7%.
Research In Motion (RIMM), the BlackBerry maker, beat Wall Street's expectations for its fiscal third-quarter but offered up a disappointing outlook. "The last few quarters have been some of the most trying in the history of this company," RIM co-CEO Jim Balsillie said during an earnings call with analysts on Thursday. "We understand shareholders may feel like we let them down." Both Basillie and co-CEO Mike Lazaridis will take a salary of $1 per year effectively immediately. For the three months ended in November, RIM posted adjusted earnings of $1.27 a share on revenue of $5.3 billion. Analysts were expecting earnings of $1.19 per share on revenue of $5.3 billion. For its fiscal fourth quarter , RIM forecast earnings of 80 cents to 95 cents a share with revenue of between $4.6 billion and $4.9 billion. The current consensus view is for earnings of $1.18 a share on revenue of $5.1 billion. RIM expects smartphone shipments of between 11 million and 12 million units for the fourth quarter, lower than the 14.1 million devices it shipped during the third quarter. The stock fell 9.5% to $13.70 in premarket trading Friday.
Zynga's (ZNGA) initial public offering of 100 million shares was priced at the top of its range of $10 a share. The pricing of Zynga, the maker of Farmville and other social media games, gives the company a market value of about $7 billion. The stock begins trading Friday.
Adobe Systems (ADBE), the graphics design software developer, posted above-consensus results for its fiscal fourth quarter. Adobe reported non-GAAP profit of $332.6 million, or 67 cents a share, in the three months ended Dec. 2 on revenue of $1.15 billion. Analysts were expecting earnings of 60 cents a share on revenue of $1.09 billion. Adobe said it sees non-GAAP profit ranging from 54 cents to 59 cents a share for its fiscal first quarter ending in February and $2.37 to $2.47 a share for the full year. Analysts expect first-quarter profit of 58 cents a share and $2.44 for the year.
Cablevision's (CVC) chief operating officer, Tom Rutledge, plans to resign this month. The company didn't provide a reason for his departure. It has started a search for an executive to oversee the cable operations. The Wall Street Journal reported Rutledge has long been seen as a potential CEO of another cable or satellite operator. DirecTV (DTV) tried to hire him a couple of years ago, said a person familiar with the situation. His departure comes two months after Charter Communications announced a public search for a new CEO, a job for which Rutledge could be in the running, according to the newspaper. The stock fell 7.4% to $12.90 in premarket trading.
Delta Petroleum (DPTR), the oil and gas producer, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Delta listed estimated assets and liabilities in the range of $100 million to $500 million, according to a court filing, Reuters reported.
-- Written by Joseph Woelfel
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