Stocks to Watch Monday: General Electric, Nokia, Agilent, Intuit

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(

Updated from Nov. 24, 5:43 p.m.

)

General Electric

(GE) - Get Report

named Jeffrey Immelt to

succeed Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jack Welch, when Welch steps aside at the end of 2001.

Immelt, an 18-year GE veteran, was immediately installed as president and chairman-elect of the Fairfield, Conn.-based conglomerate. Immelt, 44, was most recently president and CEO of

GE Medical Systems

, a $7 billion unit of GE that is a leader in medical diagnostic technology and information systems.

Mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures

Agilent

(A) - Get Report

agreed to buy

Objective Systems Integrators

(OSII)

in a cash tender offer of $17.75 a share, or $665 million.

Objective Systems makes software that manages communications networks for voice and e-services. "OSI is a great fit with Agilent's strategy and clearly positions us as the leading provider of OSS

operations support system solutions for current and next-generation communications service providers,'' Ned Barnholt, president and CEO of Agilent, said in a statement.

Agilent says the deal, which is expected to close within about six weeks, will cut its earnings per share for 2001 by approximately 2 cents, while adding about one percentage point to its annual revenue growth.

Intuit

(INTU) - Get Report

, which makes accounting and tax software, said it would sell its

QuickenInsurance

business to online insurance service

InsWeb

(INSW) - Get Report

in a $14 million stock deal.

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Earnings/revenue reports and previews

Dillard's

(DDS) - Get Report

posted third-quarter earnings of 7 cents a share, missing the 12-analyst estimate of 9 cents and down from year-ago earnings of 33 cents a share. The company cited a weak retail environment and a 3% decline in same-store sales. Excluding extraordinary gains on early debt payments, the retailer posted a loss of 10 cents a share.

After Friday's Close

C-Cor.net

(CCBL)

joined a chorus of other telecom-equipment providers Friday indicating that AT&T's broadband division told the company to hold the shipment of pending orders for the remainder of the calendar year.

C-Cor said

AT&T

(T) - Get Report

served the notice as part of its year-end budget balancing process. C-Cor doesn't expect the delay to have "a material effect" on the financial results for the current quarter. Analysts expect C-Cor to earn 14 cents a share for the second quarter, according to

First Call/Thomson Financial

.

Antec

(ANTC)

,

CommScope

(CTV) - Get Report

and

Scientific-Atlanta

(SFA)

all ended lower Friday after AT&T Broadband decided to postpone taking some orders for telecommunications equipment.

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Analyst actions

Prudential Securities

downgraded

Cypress Semiconductor

(CY) - Get Report

to accumulate from strong buy. The firm believes further upward estimate revisions are unlikely and that visibility for future quarters is not as strong as it has been for the last several quarters. Prudential also cut its price target to $42 from $75.

Micron Technology

(MU) - Get Report

was upgraded to strong buy from buy and its 12-month price target was upped to $50 from $40 at

Banc of America

, but its 2001 EPS estimate was downgraded to $2 from $3.70 at

ABN Amro

.

Nokia

(NOK) - Get Report

was cut from

Morgan Stanley Dean Witter's

European model portfolio of top stock picks. The firm said it put money into

Alcatel

(ALA)

in the European model portfolio.

Upgrades

MGM Mirage

(MGG)

: UP to buy from neutral at

Salomon Smith Barney

.

Public Service Enterprise Group

(PEG) - Get Report

: UP to buy from add at ABN Amro.

Downgrades

Altera

(ALTR) - Get Report

: fourth-quarter EPS view to 31 cents from 32 cents at

Lehman Brothers

and 2001 EPS estimate to $1.40 from $1.45.

Broadcom

(BRCM)

: price target DOWN to $200 from $300 at Salomon.

Xilinx

(XLNX) - Get Report

: 2001 EPS view DOWN to $1.28 from $1.30 at Lehman and 2002 EPS view down to $1.72 from $1.82.

Initiations

BEA Systems

(BEAS)

: NEW buy at

UBS Warburg

; price target: $75.

Energy Partners

(EPL)

: NEW intermediate and long-term buy at

Merrill Lynch

; 12-month price target: $19.

Inverness Medical Technology

(IMA)

: NEW buy at UBS Warburg: price target: $44.

Redback Networks

(RBAK)

: NEW buy at

W.R. Hambrecht

; price target: $120.

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Offerings and stock actions

CryoLife

(CRY) - Get Report

, which makes medical supplies and develops living human tissue implants, said its board authorized a 3-for-2 stock split.

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Miscellany

S1

(SONE)

named Jaime Ellertson chief executive, succeeding James Mahan III, who is becoming chairman. Mahan is replacing Michel Akkermans, who resigned from the chairman's position, but is remaining on the board.

Sovereign Bancorp

(SVRN)

said it will lay off 6% of its workforce, or 500 employees, as part of its restructuring after acquiring several branches from

FleetBoston Financial

(FBF)

. The company said it will take about $15 million in aftertax restructuring charges.

After Friday's Close

DaimlerChrysler

(DCX)

Chief Executive Juergen Schrempp said that the first effects of restructuring at the group's Chrysler unit would be seen after 12 months, according to

Bild

newspaper.

Schrempp told the paper that he was confident DaimlerChrysler was going to emerge stronger from the troubles at Chrysler, which faces heavy losses.

Yesterday, the automaker's CFO Manfred Gentz said it might make an announcement on job cuts in the Chrysler unit within the next few days. Gentz also said that further temporary plant shutdowns in North America were planned, on top of the three already announced. As part of the company's overhaul, the U.S. unit's top managers were replaced by senior executives from the group's headquarters in Germany.

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