Updated from 11:20 a.m. Shares of Cummins ( CMI) were among the NYSE's losers Wednesday, falling 8% after the engine maker blew away fourth-quarter estimates but warned that 2005 earnings would fall short of Wall Street forecasts. The company earned $119 million, or $2.41 a share, on sales of $2.35 billion during the fourth quarter. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call were expecting earnings of $2.08 a share on sales of $2.28 billion. A year ago the company earned $43 million, or $1 a share, on sales of $1.74 billion. Looking ahead, Cummins said that it expects 2005 earnings of $8 to $8.30 a share. Analysts, however, had been expecting earnings of $8.55 a share. Shares traded down $6.29 to $72.75. Tower Automotive ( TWR), which supplies auto parts, filed for bankruptcy protection early Wednesday, citing lower production volume on key auto platforms and increased steel prices. It also cited the termination of early pay programs at certain auto makers and a "complex and restrictive capital structure." Tower said that it has arranged for up to $725 million in debtor-in-possession financing, which it will use to fund normal business operations. The company's international operations are not included in the bankruptcy filing. The NYSE suspended shares on Wednesday and moved to delist the stock. Tower last traded at 77 cents on Tuesday. Shares of Linens 'n Things ( LIN) rose 9.3% after the company posted fourth-quarter earnings above expectations. Excluding items, the company earned $1.03 a share on sales of $875.7 million. Analysts were expecting earnings of 97 cents a share on sales of $850.7 million. Looking ahead, the company said it would post first-quarter earnings of 6 cents to 9 cents a share on sales growth of 6% to 9%. Analysts had been expecting earnings of 9 cents a share on sales of $595.3 million, or sales growth of 7.7%. Shares traded up $2.40 to $28.10.
TXU ( TXU) rose 3.9% after the electric utility company posted fourth-quarter earnings that came in ahead of expectations and said that 2005 earnings would be higher than expectations. Excluding one-time items, the company posted a profit of $183 million, or 67 cents a share, on sales of $1.91 billion. Analysts were expecting earnings of 47 cents a share. Looking ahead, TXU reiterated its 2005 forecast, saying that it would earn between $5.65 and $5.85 a share. Analysts are expecting earnings of $5.58 a share. Shares traded up $2.67 to $72. Shares of Metal Management ( MTLM) rose 1.1% after the company posted solid third-quarter results. The metal recycler posted a profit of $29.5 million, or $1.19 a share, on sales of $447.6 million. The lone analyst with a published First Call estimate was looking for earnings of $1.15 a share on sales of $418 million. A year ago the company earned $12.6 million, or 54 cents a share, on sales of $257.7 million. Shares traded up 30 cents to $27. NYSE volume leaders included Pfizer ( PFE), up 21 cents to $24.07; Lucent ( LU), up 2 cents to $3.27; Sprint ( FON), up 30 cents to $24.48; SBC Communications ( SBC), up 47 cents to $24.39; AT&T ( T), up 46 cents to $19.60; Countrywide Financial ( CFC), down $2.12 to $35.91; and Nortel ( NT), down 11 cents to $3.24. Nasdaq volume leaders included JDS Uniphase ( JDSU), down 5 cents to $2.02; Microsoft ( MSFT), up 7 cents to $26.46; Intel ( INTC), down 5 cents to $22.58; Cisco ( CSCO), up 2 cents to $18.15; Sun Microsystems ( SUNW), down 3 cents to $4.39; Sirius Satellite Radio ( SIRI), up 7 cents to $6.36; and Google ( GOOG), up $14.06 to $205.96.