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Ticker-Tape Parade: Cendant Buys Cheap Tickets, Semis Get an Upgrade

Cendant (CD) agreed to acquire Cheap Tickets (CTIX), a discount air-travel ticket business, for $425 million in cash. Cendant expects to close the transaction in the fall. The deal will add 1 cent to 2 cents a share to earnings in 2002, and 3 cents to the bottom line in 2003.

Earnings Reports & Warnings:

  • DTE Energy (DTE) said it earned 48 cents a share in the second quarter, excluding charges related to the acquisition of MCN Energy. Including the charge, the company lost 60 cents a share. Analysts were expecting the company to earn 36 cents a share. The company earned 76 cents in the year-ago period.

  • May Department Stores (MAY) said it met Wall Street's earnings estimates for the second quarter, posting income of 35 cents a share. The company's bottom line was 41 cents a share in the same period last year. Same-store sales fell 3.1% for the quarter.

  • Niagara Mohawk (NMK) lost 50 cents a share in the second quarter, including a loss of 27 cents a share from investments. The company lost 12 cents a share in the year-ago period.

  • Pizza chain Papa John's International (PZZA) said its July comparable domestic systemwide sales were flat, with a 0.9% increase at franchised restaurants and a 3.3% decrease at company-owned restaurants. Total systemwide international sales increased 23.7%.

  • Savvis Communications (SVVS) said it lost 62 cents in the second quarter, excluding unusual items. The company lost 44 cents in the year-ago period. A single analyst polled by Thomson Financial/First Call was expecting a loss of 62 cents in the period. The company also said it had hired Merrill Lynch to "advise it in discussions with potential strategic partners."

    Miscellaneous News:

  • Webvan (WBVN) is soliciting bids for its units and assets, but the company doesn't expect enough proceeds to distribute to shareholders. The online grocer, which recently declared bankruptcy, said it has contacted 60 potential buyers and expects several of them to place bids by the Aug. 27 deadline.

    Analyst Actions:

  • Goldman Sachs upgraded a group of semiconductor companies and added Intel (INTC) to its recommended list. According to a research note, Goldman upgraded the chip sector to overweight, saying that fundamentals were likely to strengthen in the fourth quarter.

    Goldman also added Analog Devices (ADI) and Maxim Integrated Products (MXIM) to the recommended list and upgraded Linear Technology (LLTC) to outperform.

    Broadcom (BRCM), Conexant (CNXT), Qualcomm (QCOM) and Microtune (TUNE) were also added to the recommended list.

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