Shares of Shuffle Master ( SHFL) were among the Nasdaq's winners Tuesday, jumping 18% after the casino-supply company reported better-than-expected first-quarter results and lifted its full-year earnings guidance. The company posted earnings from continuing operations, which excludes stock-based compensation costs, of $8.1 million, or 23 cents a share, on revenue of $33.3 million. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call expected earnings of 21 cents a share and revenue of $31.6 million. During the year-earlier quarter, the company earned $6.2 million, or 17 cents a share, on revenue of $25.4 million. "In addition to generating significant growth in all financial categories, we continue to execute on our strategy of both product and geographic diversification, resulting from both organic growth and acquisitions," the company said. Shuffle Master raised the bottom end of its projected earnings range for 2006 to $1.02 to $1.05 a share, compared with an earlier view of $1 to $1.05 a share. Analysts, on average, expect earnings of $1.02 a share. Shuffle Master shares recently were trading up $4.68 to $30.91. Jones Apparel ( JNY) confirmed it is looking into a sale of the entire company, sending shares up 14%. The fashion company hired Goldman Sachs as an adviser in the process. Jones, which owns brands including Barneys New York, Nine West and Anne Klein, noted that it isn't considering the sale of any of its businesses or divisions. The shares shot up 9% earlier in the day after Women's Wear Daily reported that Jones was exploring several strategic options, and recently advanced even further to $35.15, up $4.33, after the company confirmed the potential sale. Dollar General ( DG) fell 4% after the discount retailer posted a weaker-than-expected fourth-quarter profit and forecast first-quarter earnings below expectations. The company earned $145.3 million, or 46 cents a share, up from $133.9 million, or 41 cents a share, a year earlier. Sales rose to $2.48 billion from $2.2 billion, while same-store sales fell 1.6%. Analysts expected earnings of 49 cents a share and sales of $2.47 billion. During the year-earlier quarter, the company earned $133.9 million, or 41 cents a share, on sales of $2.2 billion.
Looking ahead, Dollar General anticipates first-quarter earnings of 15 cents to 18 cents a share. The estimate excludes a possible gain from a hurricane-related insurance claim. Analysts project earnings of 22 cents a share. For the full year, the company sees earnings of $1.14 to $1.21 a share, including a penny a share in stock-based compensation costs. Analysts project earnings of $1.26 a share. Shares were trading down 64 cents to $17.56. Shares of Cendant ( CD) rose 3% after the consumer-services conglomerate predicted that first-quarter earnings would be at or near the high end of its recently issued forecast. In February, the company projected first-quarter earnings from continuing operations of 11 cents to 16 cents a share, excluding separation costs. Analysts project earnings of 14 cents a share. The company issued the updated forecast ahead of its investor day conference Tuesday. Shares were trading up 51 cents to $17.70. GameStop ( GME) rose 9% after the video-game retailer posted fourth-quarter results that topped forecasts and issued a better-than-expected guidance for the current year. The company earned $85 million, or $1.10 a share, for the quarter ended Jan. 28. Results included after-tax items of $1.4 million, or 2 cents a share. Analysts expected earnings of $1.08 a share. Sales totaled $1.67 billion, above Wall Street's projection of $1.66 billion. During the year-earlier period, the company earned $34.5 million, or 64 cents a share, on sales of $708.7 million. GameStop sees earnings of $2 to $2.10 a share, excluding stock-based compensation costs, for the year ending next February. The company predicts pro forma sales growth of 14% to 17%. Analysts project earnings of $1.77 a share and sales of $5.05 billion. Shares were up $3.69 to $45.09. Shares of FactSet Research Systems ( FDS) rose 3% after the financial-data provider reported better-than-anticipated second-quarter results. The company earned $19.2 million, or 38 cents a share, on revenue of $93.7 million. Excluding items, the company earned $20.9 million, or 41 cents a share, for the quarter ended Feb. 28. Analysts expected earnings of 37 cents a share, before items, on revenue of $92.3 million. During the year-earlier period, the company earned $17.2 million, or 34 cents a share, on revenue of $76.5 million. Looking ahead, FactSet sees third-quarter revenue of $95 million to $97 million, ahead of the $94.9 million that analysts project. Shares were trading up $1.36 to $42.10.
NYSE volume leaders included Lucent Technologies ( LU), down 3 cents to $2.79; Valeant Pharmaceuticals ( VRX), down $3.36 to $15.32; Exxon Mobil ( XOM), up 14 cents to $60.80; Ford ( F), up 2 cents to $7.95; General Motors ( GM), up 77 cents to $21.62; Pfizer ( PFE), unchanged at $26.47; EMC ( EMC), down 21 cents to $14.12; General Electric ( GE), down 4 cents to $34.46; Nortel Networks ( NT), unchanged at $2.86; Wal-Mart ( WMT), up 26 cents to $48.02; and Time Warner ( TWX), down 7 cents to $17.08. Nasdaq volume leaders included Oracle ( ORCL), down 29 cents to $13.43; Intel ( INTC), up 31 cents to $19.93; Sun Microsystems ( SUNW), down 1 cent to $4.82; Sirius Satellite Radio ( SIRI), up 4 cents to $5.15; Mindspeed Technologies ( MSPD), up 57 cents to $3.89; Level 3 Communications ( LVLT), down 7 cents to $3.66; Microsoft ( MSFT), up 8 cents to $27.97; and JDSU ( JDSU), up 3 cents to $4.03.