Shares of Littelfuse ( LFUS) were among the Nasdaq's winners Friday, jumping 17% after the fuse maker lifted its first-quarter earnings and sales guidance. The company now expects earnings of at least 40 cents a share, up from an earlier view of at least 30 cents a share. The projection excludes about 3 cents a share in stock-based compensation costs. The company now sees sequential sales growth of at least 10%, up from an earlier view of 5% to 10% growth. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call expect earnings of 29 cents a share on sales of $125 million, or sales growth of 8%. "Our electronics business, which began improving late in the fourth quarter of 2005, has ramped-up faster than expected," Littelfuse said. "Improvement in telecom has been the most significant contributor, but all major end markets are showing positive trends, with particular strength in North American distribution." Shares were up $4.39 to $30.98. Superior Industries ( SUP) rose 6% after the wheel maker reported better-than-expected fourth-quarter earnings. The company posted a net loss of $19.1 million, or 72 cents a share, including an impairment charge and other items totaling $45.7 million on a pretax basis, or $1.03 a share. Analysts expected earnings of 22 cents a share, before items. Sales totaled $218.9 million, compared with analysts' estimate of $222.6 million. During the year-earlier period, the company earned $11.9 million, or 45 cents a share, on sales of $234.5 million. Shares were up $1.13 to $20.95. Shares of Terex ( TEX) fell 8% after the construction-equipment company said that it won't file its 2005 annual report on time and updated its guidance. Terex said that it is about four to six weeks behind schedule on its 2005 financial statements. "While the company is working hard to shorten the timeframe needed to complete its 2005 audited financial statements and submit its quarterly and annual filings for 2005, Terex will file a form 12b-25 notification of late filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission indicating that more time is required beyond the March 16 deadline to complete its 2005 annual report on form 10-K," the company said in a statement.
As for the company's estimates for 2005, Terex said it expects to post earnings, excluding items, of $3.90 to $4 a share. The company predicts sales of $6.4 billion. Analysts had forecast earnings of $4.21 a share and sales of $6.25 billion. For 2006, meanwhile, the company sees earnings of $5.50 to $6 a share, excluding items. The company predicts sales of $6.7 billion to $7.1 billion. Analysts project 2006 earnings of $5.79 a share and sales of $6.84 billion. Shares were down $5.85 to $68.74. Shares of AnnTaylor ( ANN) climbed 5% after the women's apparel retailer posted fourth-quarter results that topped forecasts. The company earned $27.4 million, or 38 cents a share, on sales of $574 million. Excluding items, the company earned $31.3 million, or 43 cents a share. Analysts expected earnings of 40 cents a share and sales of $569.1 million. Last year, the company posted fourth-quarter loss, excluding items, of $5.1 million, or 7 cents a share, on sales of $487.3 million. AnnTaylor projects 2006 earnings of $1.60 to $1.65 a share, including stock-based compensation costs of 6 cents a share. The forecast is in line with the $1.67 a share that analysts expect. Shares recently had gained $1.64 to $36.97. Hibbett Sporting Goods ( HIBB) rose modestly after the sporting goods retailer posted mixed fourth-quarter results. The company earned $9.9 million, or 29 cents a share, up from $8.1 million, or 23 cents a share, a year earlier. The earnings topped analysts' estimate by a penny. Sales rose to $120.8 million from $107.1 million, but missed Wall Street's estimate of $121.4 million. Looking ahead, Hibbett sees first-quarter earnings, excluding stock-based compensation costs, of 34 cents to 38 cents a share. Analysts project earnings of 38 cents a share. Shares were trading up 39 cents to $32.
NYSE volume leaders included Nortel Networks ( NT), unchanged at $3.09; Motorola ( MOT), down 13 cents to $21.15; Lucent Technologies ( LU), down 1 cent to $2.81; Exxon Mobil ( XOM), up 3 cents to $58.95; Hexcel ( HXL), down 16 cents to $20.10; General Electric ( GE), up 46 cents to $33.66; Pfizer ( PFE), up 2 cents to $26.21; Advanced Micro Devices ( AMD), up 54 cents to $36.75; and Elan ( ELN), down 38 cents to $14.94. Nasdaq volume leaders included JDSU ( JDSU), down 2 cents to $3.78; Intel ( INTC), up 20 cents to $19.95; Oracle ( ORCL), up 8 cents to $12.92; Cisco Systems ( CSCO), up 13 cents to $20.57; Apple Computer ( AAPL), up 27 cents to $64.20; Sirius Satellite Radio ( SIRI), down 10 cents to $4.79; Sun Microsystems ( SUNW), up 6 cents to $4.57; and Microsoft ( MSFT), up 6 cents to $27.06.