Monday's Winners & Losers: Marvel

Updated from 2:11 p.m. EST with new stock prices

Shares of Marvel Entertainment ( MVL) were among the NYSE's winners Monday, soaring 16.2% after the entertainment company blew past Wall Street's third-quarter profit targets.

Marvel posted third-quarter earnings of $36.3 million, or 45 cents a share, on sales of $123.6 million. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial expected a profit of 28 cents a share and sales of $90.5 million. The company attributed the performance to strength in its licensing business, particularly for Spider-Man 3 merchandise.

For the full year, Marvel now sees earnings of $1.60 to $1.65 a share, above its prior view of $1.30 to $1.55. The company lifted its sales forecast for the year to $455 million to $475 million from a prior range of $375 million to $435 million. Wall Street projects full-year earnings of $1.44 a share and sales of $431 million. Shares of Marvel were jumping $3.77 to $27.08.

American Financial Realty Trust ( AFR) and Alfa Corp. ( ALFA) also saw big gains after each agreed to buyouts.

Gramercy Capital ( GKK) agreed to acquire American Financial for $5.50 a share in cash and 0.12096 shares of Gramercy stock. Including debt, the deal is valued at $3.4 billion. Gramercy, a unit of New York office owner SL Green ( SLG), expects to own approximately 27 million square feet of commercial real estate in 37 states after the deal. Shares of American Financial were up $1.61 to $8.06, while Gramercy shares were up 11 cents to $24.33.

Alfa agreed to a going-private deal with its majority shareholder, Alfa Mutual. The deal will pay Alfa investors $22 a share, a 26% premium over Friday's closing price. The purchase has a total value of $840 million. Shares of Alfa, an insurance concern, were up $3.99 to $21.51.

Among losers, Cardinal Health ( CAH) shed nearly 7% after the medical-products distributor warned of weakening results at its biggest unit. For the third quarter, Cardinal posted adjusted earnings from continuing operations of $318 million, or 86 cents a share, matching estimates. The company also backed its outlook for the full year.

Cardinal said, however, that its health care supply chain services-pharmaceutical segment is expected to have a full-year profit below its long-term goal of 7% to 10% growth. Mark Parrish, who led that division, is leaving the company immediately, Cardinal said. Shares were sliding $4.26 to $62.65.

Nu Skin Enterprises ( NUS) dropped 7.9% after the company's revenue outlook disappointed investors. The company, a maker of personal care and nutritional products, posted third-quarter earnings of $13.5 million, or 21 cents a share, including 5 cents a share in one-time costs tied to a distributor convention. Revenue totaled $290.7 million. Analysts expected earnings of 23 cents a share and revenue of $287 million.

Looking ahead, Nu Skin projected fourth-quarter revenue of $295 million to $300 million, below Wall Street's forecast of $302 million. For 2008, the company anticipates revenue of $1.18 billion to $1.2 billion, also shy of analysts' $1.22 billion projection. The stock was down $1.34 to $15.62.

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