AMD, Deere Lead High-Flying Stocks

Trina Solar, Advanced Micro Devices, H.J. Heinz and Time Warner hit 52-week highs yesterday.
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BOSTON (

TheStreet

) -- Weaker-than-expected housing starts and building permits stalled stocks yesterday. Major U.S. indices declined, but a handful of stocks hit 52-week highs.

5. Trina Solar

(TSL)

advanced 4.2% to $42.75. The panel maker is scheduled to report third-quarter results this morning.

HSBC

(HBC)

recently initiated coverage at "overweight."

Our take

: We rate Trina Solar "sell." Second-quarter net income increased 11% to $19 million and earnings per share climbed 4% to 71 cents, restrained by a higher share count. Revenue dropped 27% to $150 million. Trina's gross margin jumped from 23% to 27%, and its operating margin rose from 15% to 16%. Trina trades at a discount to electrical component peers on projected earnings, book value and sales.

4. Advanced Micro Devices

(AMD) - Get Report

jumped 11% to $7.32. The chipmaker said it would pay off $1.4 billion of debt, using the proceeds from its settlement with

Intel

(INTC) - Get Report

.

Our take

: We rate Advanced Micro Devices "sell." The company's third-quarter loss narrowed to $106 million, or 18 cents a share, from a loss of $134 million in the year-earlier period. Revenue decreased 22% to $1.4 billion. The company's gross margin fell from 66% to 61%, and its operating fell from 7% into negative territory. We give Advanced Micro Devices a financial strength score of 1.5 out of 10, less than the "buy"-list average.

3. H.J. Heinz

(HNZ)

increased 0.3% to $42.48. The condiment maker ranked No. 1 in overall satisfaction and quality among food manufacturers in the American Customer Satisfaction Index.

Our take

: We rate H.J. Heinz "buy." Fiscal first-quarter profit decreased 7% to $213 million, or 67 cents a share, as revenue declined 5% to $2.5 billion. Heinz's gross margin fell from 39% to 38%, but its operating margin remained steady at 15%. We give Heinz a volatility score of 5.4 out of 10, higher than the "buy"-list average. Its shares offer a 4% dividend yield, more than the

S&P 500 Index

average of 2.8%.

2. Deere & Co.

(DE) - Get Report

rose 4.7% to $51.46. The stock rallied on bullish comments from Jim Cramer, who cited last week's higher crop price forecast from the Department of Agriculture as a reason to buy.

Our take

: We rate Deere "buy." Third-quarter net income fell 27% to $420 million, or 99 cents a share, as revenue decreased 24% to $5.9 billion. Deere's gross margin rose from 31% to 32%, but its operating margin fell from 15% to 13%. We give Deere a financial strength score of 9.9 out of 10.

1. Time Warner

(TWX)

climbed 0.8% to $32.82. On Tuesday,

Goldman Sachs

(GS) - Get Report

added it to the Sustain Focus list, of companies with defensible competitive advantages.

Our take

: We rate Time Warner "sell." Third-quarter net income dropped 38% to $661 million and earnings per share decreased 13% to 55 cents, cushioned by a lower share count. Revenue declined 6% to $7.1 billion. Time Warner's gross margin rose from 67% to 70%, but its operating margin was unchanged at 21%. We give Time Warner a growth score of 2.9 out of 10, less than the "buy"-list average.

-- Reported by Jake Lynch in Boston.