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Updated from 11:24 a.m. EDT

Steel stocks rallied Monday after a British magnate announced plans to acquire

International Steel Group

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for $4.5 billion. The transaction, in which two companies controlled by billionaire Lakshmi Mittal of the U.K. will merge and then acquire ISG for $42 a share, will create the world's largest steel company, with pro forma sales of about $30 billion annually. ISG's stock traded up $5.57, or 18.8%, to $35.25, while other steelmakers, including

U.S. Steel

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AK Steel

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, were also up on the buyout news.

Shares of

John B. Sanfilippo & Son

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fell 30.4% after the company turned in first-quarter results that missed Wall Street expectations by a wide margin. The snack-food company earned 24 cents a share on sales of $134.6 million. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call were expecting earnings of 67 cents a share on sales of $143.6 million. A year ago the company earned 76 cents a share on sales of $124.8 million. Weakness in the company's consumer distribution channel and rising almond costs led to the lackluster quarter. Shares traded down $6.80 to $15.60.

Wild Oats Markets

( OATS) fell 18% after the company warned that third-quarter results would come in below expectations. Excluding items, the natural foods retailer expects to post a loss of about 11 cents to 13 cents a share. Analysts had been expecting a profit of 1 cent a share. For the full year, Wild Oats expects to post a loss of 13 cents to 17 cents a share. Analysts had been expecting earnings of 19 cents a share. Price cutting, caused by competitive pressure in Southern California and Texas, along with new store openings, led to the third-quarter weakness. Shares traded down $1.34 to $6.11.


( TXU) rose 16% after the power company raised its quarterly dividend, lifted its earnings estimates for 2004 and 2005, and raised the number of shares it would buy in its stock repurchase program. The Texas company will now pay a quarterly dividend of 56.25 cents, up from its previous rate of 12.5 cents a share. Operating income for 2004 is expected to be $2.65 to $2.70 a share, up from its previous forecast of $2.55 to $2.65. The company put 2005 operating earnings at $5.65 to $5.85 a share, up from the $3.75 to $4.25 it previously forecast. Finally, TXU replaced its 10 million share repurchase plan with a new 50 million share repurchase plan. Shares traded up $8.44 to $61.25.

Shares of

NS Group

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rose 4% after the company swung to a third-quarter profit that easily outpaced expectations. The tubular products company earned $1.14 a share on sales of $122.1 million. Analysts were expecting earnings of $1 a share on sales of $122.8 million. A year ago the company posted a loss of 11 cents a share on sales of $73.6 million. NS Group said that even though it anticipates higher steel costs during the fourth quarter, it expects to remain "solidly profitable." Analysts are expecting fourth-quarter earnings of 63 cents a share on sales of $126 million. Shares traded up 68 cents to $17.59.


volume leaders included


( LU), up 3 cents to $3.48;


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, up 4 cents to $27.78;

Delta Air Lines

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, up 54 cents to $3.78;

Nortel Networks

( NT), down 4 cents to $3.33; and

Marsh & McLennan

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, down 37 cents to $26.42.


volume leaders included

Sirius Satellite Radio

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, up 10 cents to $4.01;


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, down 11 cents to $27.63;


(INTC) - Get Intel Corporation Report

, up 1 cent to $21.31;


(CSCO) - Get Cisco Systems, Inc. Report

, down 21 cents to $18.06; and


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, down 18 cents to $12.13.