Foot Locker Misses EPS Estimates, Cuts Guidance

Foot Locker

(FL) - Get Report

just reported a third-quarter profit that missed EPS estimates by 7 cents.

The company's sales fell 3.5% to $1.31 million, as same-store sales dipped 1.7% during the quarter. The company, which operates the Foot Locker, Lady Foot Locker, Kids Foot Locker, and Champs Sports retail chains, is lowering its outlook on tepid consumer sales.

The company now sees EPS for 2008 to fall into a range of 50 cents to 63 cents per share, below its prior view of 70 cents to 85 cents.

We had removed shares of FL from our "Recommended" list on Sept.17, when the stock traded at $17.19. The company has a 7.86% dividend yield based on last night's closing stock price of $7.63. We are getting concerned about the dividend payout at these current levels. The company is approaching a key $5 technical level, last seen in late 1999. We would be looking elsewhere for better investment opportunities.

Foot Locker is not recommended at this time, holding a Dividend.com Rating of 3.0 out of 5 stars.

Salesforce.com Third-Quarter Profit Grows 55%

Salesforce.com

(CRM) - Get Report

reported late Thursday that its third-quarter profit rose 55% to $10.1 million, or 8 cents per share, for the quarter ended Oct. 31, up from $6.5 million, or 5 cents per share, a year prior.

The company, which sells monthly subscriptions that allow employees to call up its customer management programs on any computer with an Internet connection, saw a 36% boost in customers.

As for the company's guidance, it now sees fourth-quarter earnings of 6 cents to 7 cents a share and revenue of $284 million to $285 million. Wall Street expects the company to post earnings of 8 cents a share and revenue of $273.6 million in the fourth quarter. Shares are approaching a key technical support area of $20 to $21 a share. If that fails to hold, the next area of support is at the $10-13 price level. We would be careful trying to catch a bottom in the name, which does not currently pay a dividend.

H.J. Heinz Misses on Revenue Estimates

H.J. Heinz

(HNZ)

just reported its second-quarter profit rose 22% rose to $276.7 million, or 87 cents per share. That was up from $227 million, or 71 cents per share, a year earlier.

The company beat EPS estimates by 11 cents, but revenue came in below expectations. Ketchup sales grew 12% and the launch of Ore-Ida Steam 'n Mash potatoes drove up sales of the brand by a double-digit percentage.

Management reaffirmed guidance for the year of earnings of $2.87 to $2.91 per share, surrounding the consensus estimates for a profit of $2.90 per share.

We had added shares of HNZ to our "Recommended" list on Oct.17, when the stock was trading at $41. The company has a 4.37% dividend yield, based on last night's closing stock price of $38.02. We were disappointed by the revenue miss by the company, but we still think the shares may be an interesting position at these levels. We will of course monitor the stock and let investors know if we see a reason to change our position.

H.J. Heinz is a "Recommended" stock at this time, holding a Dividend.com Rating of 3.5 out of 5 stars.

Smucker's Spreads Some Smooth Profits

J.M. Smucker's

(SJM) - Get Report

just reported its second-quarter profit rose 3% to $51.5 million, or 94 cents per share, up from $50.2 million, or 87 cents per share, a year earlier.

The company's revenue rose 19% to $843.1 million from $707.9 million, on the back of solid volume gains in such brands as Smucker's fruit spreads, Pillsbury baking mixes and frostings, and Hungry Jack potatoes and pancakes.

The company said it expects to make a profit of $3.45 to $3.50 a share for fiscal 2009, above the analyst EPS estimates of $3.43.

We had removed shares of SJM from our "Recommended" list on Oct.6, when the stock traded at $48.82. The company has a 3.14% dividend yield, based on last night's closing price of $38.25. The company's valuation is attractive, and we are going to put the stock on our "upgrade" watchlist. We'll keep investors posted on any ratings changes.

Smucker's is not recommended at this time, holding a Dividend.com Rating of 3.4 out of 5 stars.

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At the time of publication, the author had no positions in stocks mentioned, although positions may change at any time.

Tom Reese and Paul Rubillo are senior editors of Dividend.com. Visit Dividend.com for more dividend stock ratings, picks, news, and analysis for long-term and income-seeking investors.