Amazon.com (AMZN - Get Report), the online retailer, came up up short in its latest quarter despite a year-over-year sales increase of nearly 30%. Amazon posted a loss of $274 million, or 60 cents a share, for the third quarter on sales of $13.81 billion. In the same period a year earlier, Amazon earned $63 million, or 14 cents a share, on sales of $10.88 billion. The latest quarter includes a loss of $169 million, or 37 cents a share, related to asset impairment at its LivingSocial unit. Analysts were expecting Amazon to post a quarterly loss of 8 cents a share in the September-ended period on revenue of $13.92 billion. Operating margins came in at negative 0.2%, declining for a third straight quarter. For the fourth quarter, Amazon forecast between an operating loss of $490 million and an operating profit of $310 million with sales between $20.25 billion and $22.75 billion. Amazon, Coinstar: After-Hours Trading
Drugmaker Merck (MRK - Get Report) is expected by analysts Friday to post third-quarter earnings of 92 cents a share on revenue of $11.57 billion in the September-ended period.
Earnings are also expected Friday from the likes of Comcast (CMCSA - Get Report), Coventry Health Care (CVH), Goodyear Tire (GT), Legg Mason (LM), Moody's (MCO), Newell Rubbermaid (NWL), Starwood Financial (SFI) and Weyerhaeuser (WY).
Dean Foods (DF - Get Report) Morningstar business has attracted takeover interest from Michael Foods and Mexican dairy company Grupo Lala, people familiar with the matter told Reuters, in a deal that could be valued in the $1 billion to $1.5 billion range.
Wal-Mart (WMT) said Friday it plans to open 100 stores in the next three years in China and add 18,000 jobs. The pace of store openings is a slowdown from earlier growth rates for Wal-Mart in the competitive Chinese retail sector.
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