Stocks to Watch: Hewlett-Packard and Entergy Post Earnings - TheStreet

Stocks to Watch: Hewlett-Packard and Entergy Post Earnings

UPM-Kymmene to buy rival Champion International; Citigroup to create Internet portal with Commerce One.
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Hewlett-Packard

(HWP)

posted first-quarter earnings last night of 80 cents a share, beating the 23-analyst estimate of 78 cents but down from the year-ago 85 cents. The report did not include costs associated with its

Agilent

(A) - Get Report

spinoff. CEO Carly Fiorina said the company, which posted revenue of $11.7 billion, experienced growth in products and noted a turnaround in its

Unix

business, according to

Reuters

. Today,

Credit Suisse First Boston

upped HP's 2000 earnings view and said it sees upside in the numbers.

Shorewood Packaging

(SWD)

said it accepted a $600 million acquisition offer from

International Paper

(IP) - Get Report

, in an attempt to thwart a $500 million hostile bid from rival

Chesapeake

(CSK)

. The transaction calls for IP to pay $21 a share for Shorewood, topping Chesapeake's hostile bid that valued the company at $17.25 a share.

Elsewhere in the exciting world of paper,

UPM-Kymmene

said it would buy rival

Champion International

(CHA) - Get Report

in a deal valuing Champion's equity at $6.5 billion. The new company will be based in Helsinki and be called Champion International.

Mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures

Citigroup

(C) - Get Report

said it would create an Internet portal with software maker

Commerce One

(CMRC)

to enable companies to do business with one another online.

Sony

(SNE) - Get Report

said it is in talks with

Intel

(INTC) - Get Report

about a possible alliance in next-generation home appliances,

Reuters

reported.

Earnings/revenue reports and previews

(

Earnings estimates from First Call/Thomson Financial; earnings reported on a diluted basis unless otherwise specified.

)

Baker Hughes

(BHI)

posted a fourth-quarter loss of 3 cents a share, in line with the 31-analyst estimate but lower than the year-ago profit of 14 cents a share. The company said it plans to double 1999 operational earnings in 2000 and sees first-quarter results almost breaking even.

Cablevision

(CVC)

posted a fourth-quarter loss of $1.27 a share, a penny narrower than the three-analyst expected loss, but wider than the year-ago loss of $1.22 a share, which includes items.

Entergy

(ETR) - Get Report

posted fourth-quarter earnings of 8 cents a share, in line with the eight-analyst estimate but down from the year-ago 79 cents a share. The company said it expects to continue an earnings growth path of 8% to 10% in 2000 and expects EPS in the range of $2.35 to $2.45, in line with estimates.

York International

(YRK)

posted fourth-quarter earnings of 77 cents a share, a penny shy of the four-analyst estimate and down from the year-ago 81 cents a share.

Offerings and stock actions

Advanced Digital

(ADIC)

said it approved a 2-for-1 split.

Bear Stearns

increased its price range to 75 to 80, from 65 to 70.

Chase H&Q

priced a 3.7 million-share IPO for

Apropos Tech

(APRS)

above its expected $17 to $19 range at $22.

Morgan Stanley Dean Witter

priced a 7.145 million-share IPO for

Choice One

(CWON)

at $20 a share.

Elantec Semiconductor

(ELNT)

set a 2-for-1 stock split.

U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray

priced a 4.5 million-share IPO for

Eloquent

(ELOQ)

at $16 a share.

Park Place Entertainment's

(PPE)

chairman Stephen F. Bollenbach sold three million shares of the company last week, exercising 75% of his existing stock options,

The Wall Street Journal

reported. The move prompted the company's biggest institutional shareholder to demand his resignation. The sale comes four months after Bollenbach sold about two million shares of the company, the story says.

Indian Internet company

Satyam Infoway

(SIFY) - Get Report

priced 1.625 million American Depositary Receipts at $80 each, in a placement expected to raise about $130 million

Analyst Actions

First Boston upped

Act Manufacturing

(ACTM)

to strong buy from buy.

J.P. Morgan

raised

Conoco

(COC.A)

to buy from long-term buy.

ABN Amro

raised

Lucent

(LU)

to buy from outperform

Warburg Dillon Read

initiated coverage of

Molecular Devices

(MDCC)

with a strong buy rating and a price target of 90.

Credit Lyonnais

upped

USA Networks

(USAI) - Get Report

to add from hold.

First Boston analyst Wendell H. Laidley resumed coverage of

Vitria Technology

(VITR)

as a strong buy.

Miscellany

Discussions are underway at

Coca-Cola

(KO) - Get Report

on ways to speed the transfer of power to chairman-elect Douglas Daft, from its current chairman and the shift in power could be decided as early as today, the

Journal

reported

Microsoft

(MSFT) - Get Report

releases its Windows 2000 product today. The company said it plans to launch the new operating system in China on schedule and is working with authorities to ensure it complies with restrictions on encryption technology. Separately, CEO Steve Ballmer, told the

Financial Times

that the new operating system would give the company ammunition to go after rival

Sun Microsystems

(SUNW) - Get Report

.

Qualcomm

(QCOM) - Get Report

said its cofounder and vice chairman Andrew Viterbi will retire next month when he turns 65.

Rite Aid

(RAD) - Get Report

is the subject of an investigation of possible criminal fraud in connection with its past accounting practices, the

Journal

reported, citing people familiar with the situation. The investigation has been launched by the U.S. attorney in Harrisburg, Pa., the story says.

The "Heard on the Street" column in the

Journal

examines the pros and cons of "concept" stocks, highflying stocks powered largely by optimism about business concepts and future prospects. The story says prior phases of speculation for these types of stocks, 1969 and 1972 particularly, preceded significant market downturns. On the other hand, the story says, despite the risk and lofty valuations, it doesn't pay to try and fight them in this market. The story mentions

VerticalNet

(VERT)

,

Leap Wireless

(LWIN)

and

Be

(BEOS)

.

For analysis of the market's preopen tone and trends, see the Wake-Up Call, now published separately.