Early Stocks in Motion - TheStreet

Cintas

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said third-quarter earnings were $71.3 million, or 41 cents a share, compared with $66.5 million, or 39 cents a share, last year. Sales rose 8% to $755.2 million. Analysts had been forecasting earnings of 42 cents a share on sales of $753 million, according to Thomson First Call. For all of the current fiscal year, Cintas expects to earn $1.71 to $1.75 a share on sales of $3.05 billion to $3.07 billion. Analysts were forecasting $1.75 a share on $3.06 billion.

Nike's

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quarterly profits rose 36% to $273.4 million, or $1.01 a share, from $200.3 million, or 74 cents a share, a year ago. Analysts were expecting earnings of 99 cents a share, according to consensus estimates reported by Thomson First Call. Sales rose to $3.31 billion from last year's $2.9 billion. Analysts had been expecting sales of $3.22 billion in the latest quarter. Nike said worldwide futures orders for athletic footwear and apparel, scheduled for delivery from March 2005 through July 2005, rose 9.6% to $5.2 billion from the same period last year.

Scholastic's

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third-quarter loss narrowed to $700,000, or 2 cents a share, from $6 million, or 15 cents a share, last year, the company said Thursday night. Revenue rose 2% from a year ago to $480.1 million. Analysts surveyed by Thomson First Call were forecasting a loss of 4 cents a share. For the current full fiscal year, Scholastic expects to earn $1.50 to $1.70 a share excluding charges on sales of $2.1 billion. Analysts are forecasting earnings of $1.65 a share on sales of $2.09 billion.

Keebler plants in Macon, Ga., and Des Plaines, Ill, could be closed under a "capacity rationalization" program being studied by

Kellogg

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. The closures are subject to negotiations with various unions. Kellogg said such actions would require up-front costs of about $120 million and would raise the amount of an expected charge in 2005 to 15 cents a share from the currently contemplated 8 cents to 10 cents. Kellogg also reaffirmed earnings guidance of $2.28 to $2.32 a share, saying business momentum previewed in a February Web cast continues to boost results.