Small-cap stocks tracked down slightly lower than the broader market Tuesday as earnings reports prompted many of the major moves. Among the biggest gainers, shares of Las Vegas-based Allegiant Travel ( ALGT), a regional airline, rocketed 25% to $26.05. The company announced first-quarter non-GAAP income of $9.7 million, or 47 cents a share, vs. $9.7 million, or 38 cents a share, a year ago. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial were expecting EPS of 34 cents. Casual-dining establishment Texas Roadhouse ( TXRH) added 12% to $11.68. The company announced first-quarter earnings of $12.9 million, or 17 cents a share, vs. $12.3 million, or 16 cents a share, in 2007. The Street was looking for EPS of 15 cents. The company also guided for EPS growth of 5% to 15% for 2008. The forecast includes a 1-cent to 2-cent positive per-share impact from an additional week in this fiscal year. Franklin Park, Ill.'s A.M. Castle ( CAS), a distributor of specialty metals and plastics, saw shares climb 12% to $30.62. The company posted first-quarter income of $13.8 million, or 62 cents a share, compared with $15.6 million, or 81 cents a share, in the year-ago quarter. Analysts had forecast earnings of 54 cents a share. On the losing side, Intevac ( IVAC) shares gave up 22% to $12.80. The Santa Clara, Calif., provider of disk sputtering equipment reported first-quarter earnings of $1.6 million, or 7 cents a share, compared with $9.8 million, or 44 cents a share, a year ago. On its conference call, the company forecast a second-quarter EPS loss between 14 cents and 20 cents, including a stock option expense. Analysts, who typically do not include one-time charges in estimates, are looking for a loss of 5 cents a share. Piper Jaffray downgraded Intevac to sell from neutral.
Cincinnati-based Lasik vision correction provider LCA-Vision ( LCAV) slipped 17% to $10.40 on first-quarter earnings of $6.9 million, or 37 cents a share, vs. $10.9 million, or 54 cents a share, a year ago. Analysts were expecting 48 cents a share. Shares of Ladish Co. ( LDSH), a Cudahy, Wis., cast-metal components maker, declined 15% to $28.16. The company announced first-quarter income of $6 million, or 41 cents a share, vs. $5.8 million, or 40 cents a share, in 2007. Analysts had predicted EPS of 57 cents. Finally, Meadowbrook Insurance ( MIG), a property and casualty insurer hailing from Southfield, Mich., reported earnings of $7.1 million, or 19 cents a share, vs. $6.9 million, or 23 cents a share, a year ago. The Street was looking for 22 cents a share. More broadly, the Russell 2000 lost 0.9% to 718.80, and the S&P SmallCap 600 dropped 0.9% to 379.89.