General Electric ( GE) announced a surprise earnings miss fueled by its finance unit.

Results in the conglomorate's GE Money business, which focuses on consumers and small businesses, experienced a profit decline of 19%. Even more disappointing was the commercial finance business, where profits dropped 20%. GE had made attempts to lessen its risk by selling some assets, but was unable to close the deals due to the inability of buyers to get credit. The stock fell 12.8% on heavy volume with shares trading at $32.05.

Frontier Airlines ( FRNT) led the downward charge. Shares sank into a free fall, dropping 69.4% to 48 cents after the Denver company filed for bankruptcy.

Chipmaker AMD ( AMD) was down 25 cents, or 4%, to $6.02 after the company's chief technology officer stepped down. Phil Hester resigned with no replacement named yet.

Shares of mapping data supplier Navteq ( NVT) fell $3.79, or 5.4%, to $67.18 as investors worried about the state of the navigation devices sector and whether Nokia ( NOK) can successfully close its purchase of Navteq by gaining approval from European regulators.

Smarting from analyst hits was BlackRock ( BLK), which traded down 5.9% to $207.50. The New York-based investment manager got a one-two punch form Wachovia and Goldman. Goldman cut the rating to neutral from buy, citing valuation. Wachovia also called the valuation "ripe" and downgraded the stock to market perform from outperform.

Ixia ( XXIA), a provider of Internet protocol-based infrastructure and services, lost 17.6% to $6.34. Last night, the Calabasas, Calif., firm cut its first-quarter revenue forecast to between $41 million and $42 million from a previous view of $42 million to $46 million. The company also guided for non-GAAP EPS between 3 and 4 cents, down from a previous outlook of 4 cents to 7 cents. The Street is looking for revenue of $44.6 million and EPS of 6 cents. JPMorgan Securities downgraded the stock to market outperform from strong buy, and Ferris Baker Watts replaced its buy rating with neutral.
This article was written by a staff member of TheStreet.com.

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