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Thursday, Sept. 16, 1999

Quintiles Transnational got the most attention, while Red Hat made the best moves in Island ECN's after-hours trading.

After-Hours Markets

Island ECN offers trading, mainly in Nasdaq-listed stocks, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EDT. Prior to September 15, 1999, Island offered trading from 8 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. EDT



Eric Gillin

Day-Session Report

Major proxies ended the day off their lows but still in the red, with the exception of the

S&P 500

, which managed to squeak by on a gain of less than a point. The

Dow Jones Industrial Average

was down 64 to 10,737, while the

Nasdaq Composite Index

was down 8.5, rebounding from a drop of more than 40 points.

The big European indices closed with France's


down 21.47 to 4640.55, and Germany's

Xetra Dax

down 82.76, or 1.5%, to 5304.42. London's

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fell 53.1, or 0.9%, to 6014.6.



dropped 485.63, or 2.73%, to 17,291. Markets in Hong Kong were closed due to Typhoon York.

Mergers, Acquisitions and Joint Ventures




British Telecom


plan to form an alliance of their mobile phone operations. The alliance, called


, will have annual sales of $12 billion but will not be formed as a separate company.

Freedom Securities


agreed to buy small-stock dealer

Hill Thompson Magid

for $45 million in cash and stock. Freedom said the acquisition of the dealer in 8,000 small stocks will enable it to participate in the growth of small-cap trading.


, a unit of

General Electric


, will invest $415 million in

Paxson Communications


for a 32% stake.



said it would buy

Align-Rite International


for about $115 million in stock.

Visual Networks


agreed to buy closely held

Inverse Network Technology

in a stock deal worth about $177 million.

Earnings/Revenue Reports and Previews



reported first-quarter earnings of 35 cents a share, in line with the 21-analyst estimate and up from 30 cents a year ago.

Brush Wellman


said it will likely miss third- and fourth-quarter analyst estimates due to costs in its alloy expansion project in Elmore, Ohio.



reported third-quarter earnings of 67 cents a share, better than the 23-analyst estimate of 64 cents a share and up from 58 cents a year ago.

Circuit City


reported second-quarter earnings of 36 cents a share from continuing operations, in line with the 14-analyst estimate and up from 22 cents a year ago.

Eastman Chemical


warned third-quarter earnings would come in below the analyst estimate of 68 cents a share as natural-gas costs hurt its bottom line.



reported fourth-quarter earnings of 6 cents a share before charges, a penny better than the three-analyst estimate of 5 cents, and lower than 24 cents a year ago.



reported first-quarter earnings of 52 cents a share, shy of the 11-analyst estimate of 54 cents and above the year-ago 50 cents. The company said first-quarter profit was hurt by higher fuel costs and warned that future earnings, including second-quarter and yearly results could fall below analyst expectations. FDX said fuel costs could hurt its 2000 operating income by as much as $150 million and said the growth in volume for domestic packages was below expectations.



said it expects a third-quarter loss of 3 cents to 5 cents a share, compared with the four-analyst earnings-per-share estimate of 3 cents.

MGM Grand's


CFO Jim Murren said he was "very comfortable" with analyst expectations for the third quarter


reported. The 17-analyst estimate calls for earnings of 47 cents a share.



said its fourth-quarter earnings would include a noncash, pre-tax loss of $2.5 million from its stake in

Vail Resorts





reported first-quarter earnings of 17 cents a share, a penny better than the nine-analyst estimate, and up from a year-ago 13 cents. All share figures were adjusted for a 3-for-2 stock split in May.

PMI Group


said it expects third-quarter and full-year earnings to top expectations because of strong volume in new insurance writing.



is the latest company to line up for punishment with a negative earnings warning. The company said it sees third- and fourth-quarter results falling below estimates partly from the early end of several clinical programs.

Warburg Dillon Read

slapped it with an earnings estimate reduction to $1.49 from $1.78.

ING Barings

then entered the ring with a ratings right hook, knocking the stock to hold from strong buy. Quintiles suffered, falling 14 13/16, or 42.3%, to 20.



reported first-quarter earnings of 20 cents a share before charges, ahead of the seven-analyst estimate of 17 cents and up from a year-ago loss of 9 cents.

Offerings and stock actions

Axa Financial


said its board approved a 2-for-1 common stock split. The split will take the form of a 100% dividend and will apply to shareholders of record on Sept. 27.

BJ'S Wholesale Club


approved an additional stock buyback of $50 million. The company recently completed a 2.4 million share buyback also worth $50 million.

The first day of trading for Web services company


(LUMT:Nasdaq) provided a rare bright spot. After debuting at $18, which was above the estimated $15 to $17 range, the stock closed up 8 5/16, or 46.2%, to 26 3/8%.


American Home Products


may be near a $3 billion settlement to resolve injury claims by users of its diet drugs,

The Wall Street Journal

reported in its online edition. According to the report, people close to the situation said an announcement on a deal could happen within days but added that terms were sketchy and that the deal could still fall apart.

Paine Webber

raised AHP to attractive from neutral.

CHS Electronics


said it hired

Raymond James & Associates

to help review its operations and recommend actions to enhance shareholder value. The software and equipment seller has been shutting warehouses and laying off workers in an effort to cut costs after it accumulated heavy debt through acquisitions.


Labor Department

reported that 288,000 Americans filed first-time claims for unemployment benefits for the week ended Sept. 11, down by 4,000 from the week before. Economists generally consider claim levels below 300,000 as an indication of an extremely tight labor market.



and the

United Auto Workers

reached a tentative agreement on a new contract covering more than 70,000 workers. Meanwhile, talks continued at a slower pace at

General Motors


, and



, where the UAW has indefinitely extended contracts.


Lester Roseen of Hartford, Conn., still brings flowers to the grave of his poodle, Johnny Boy, who died 25 years ago from a botched tooth extraction. The 65-year-old man, who has not owned another dog since, is suing the

Connecticut Humane Society

for $2,500, alleging they didn't protect his best friend's gravesite during a recent building project. The society says the grave was not damaged in the process, adding that it even put cautionary yellow tape around Johnny Boy's resting place.

The Mobile County, Ala., school system says it will discontinue its traditional end-of-the-game handshake after the peaceful gesture inexplicably ignited a brawl at a Monday night football game that landed two players in the hospital.