• News Corp. ( NWS) will issue $680 million in stock and pay $250 million in cash to WorldCom ( WCOM). The payments relate to the ending of the companies' former American Sky Broadcasting satellite joint venture.

    Earnings Reports & Outlooks

  • Cintas ( CTAS) expects to earn 31 cents to 33 cents a share on revenue of $540 million in the third quarter ending Feb. 28. For the fiscal year ending May 31, the corporate uniform provider forecast a profit of $1.36 to $1.39 a share with a top line of $2.23 billion to $2.26 billion. Analysts expect earnings of 35 cents for the third quarter and $1.39 for the year.

  • J.C. Penney ( JCP) posted fourth-quarter earnings, excluding items, of 35 cents a share, beating the consensus estimate by 5 cents. The company forecast earnings of 85 cents to 95 cents a share for the upcoming fiscal year. According to Thomson Financial/First Call, analysts are expecting 96 cents.

  • Movie Gallery ( MOVI) earned 33 cents a share in the fourth quarter, excluding items, 4 cents ahead of estimates. Revenue rose 27.6% to $108.1 million. The company expects first-quarter earnings, before items, of 26 cents to 28 cents a share and full-year earnings of 90 cents to $1 a share. Analysts are looking for 28 cents in the quarter and 95 cents for the year, according to Thomson Financial/First Call.

    Analyst Actions

  • Goldman Sachs named General Electric ( GE) as the firm's best stock pick for 2002. The firm praised GE for highly visible, realistic earnings expectations and an attractive valuation. Goldman also kept the stock on its recommended list.

  • Prudential initiated coverage of Myriad Genetics ( MYGN) with a sell rating and a $25 price target. The firm started Abgenix ( ABGX), Celera Genomics ( CRA), Medarex ( MEDX) and Millennium Pharmaceuticals ( MLNM) with buy ratings. Tularik ( TLRK) and Human Genome Sciences ( HGSI) were initiated with hold ratings.


  • Orchid BioSciences ( ORCH) is offering 8 million newly issued common shares. Robertson Stephens is underwriting the offering. The company will receive proceeds of about $23 million if all the shares are sold, including those in the overallotment option.

    Miscellaneous News

  • American International Group ( AIG) reportedly has been served subpoenas relating to its relationship with PNC Financial ( PNC). Last month, PNC said it would restate its 2001 results to consolidate the results of certain subsidiaries. AIG acknowledged that it had three structured transactions with PNC, but the company said PNC's change in accounting wouldn't affect its net income.