Stocks to Watch: Apple, GE, Children's Place (Update 1)

NEW YORK -- Apple ( AAPL) is expected Wednesday to announce the latest version of its iPad tablet.

The company is holding a media event at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco where it will launch the new iPad. It won't be called the iPad 3, but rather the iPad HD, as Apple highlights the device's high-definition screen, according to reports.

The stock rose less than 1% to $534.52 in premarket trading Wednesday.

General Electric ( GE) reiterated its 2012 guidance, saying it continues to expect double-digit revenue growth. The company is forecasting 20% to 25% growth in regions including Latin America, Australia and New Zealand, the Middle East and Africa. Growth in Asia, including China and India, is expected at 10% to 15%.

The company also plans to collaborate with the second biggest U.S. natural gas producer, Chesapeake Energy, to develop products and services for cars and trucks with domestically-produced natural gas.

Shares were 0.4% higher to $18.49 in premarket trading Wednesday.

Children's Place ( PLCE) saw its fiscal fourth-quarter earnings fall 25%. The retailer reported profit of $24.2 million, or 98 cents a share, and adjusted earnings from continuing operations of 87 cents a share, as sales were lower than expected because of higher product costs, warmer weather and the rollout of new stores.

For the current quarter, Children's Place forecast earnings of $1.03 to $1.08 a share, below the estimate of $1.14 a share.

Shares were falling 7.7% to $48.42.

Netflix ( NFLX) CEO Reed Hastings has been meeting with some of the largest U.S. cable companies ito discuss adding the online movie streaming service to their cable offerings, Reuters reported, citing sources familiar with matter.

The talks could lead to Netflix becoming available as another on-demand option for cable subscribers through their set-top boxes, according to three people familiar with the talks, Reuters said.

A partnership with a cable company would raise Netflix's competition with HBO, Reuters noted.

Pandora ( P), the streaming music company, reported a wider-than-expected fourth-quarter loss.

It was the company's first quarterly loss since it went public in June 2011.

Pandora reported a non-GAAP loss of $4.7 million, or 3 cents a share, on revenue of $81.3 million. Analysts were expecting a loss of 2 cents a share on revenue of $83.1 million in the three months ended Jan. 31.

Pandora's outlook for the fiscal year -- a non-GAAP loss of 11 to 16 cents a share -- was wider than analysts' views.

Ciena ( CIEN) posted a loss of 49 cents a share in the first quarter, narrower than the previous year's loss of 84 cents.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters estimated a loss of 5 cents a share. Revenue came in at $416.69 million, missing forecasts for $417.17 million.

For the fiscal second quarter, Ciena expects revenue in the range of $435 million to $460 million. Analysts were looking for the company to report revenue of $449.1 million.

Ciena shares were up 7% to $14.38.

Cypress Semiconductor ( CY) said that it expects revenue of $180 million to $190 million in the first quarter, below its previous guidance of $200 million to $210 million. The company explained that it expects weaker revenue from business in Europe and Asia, in particular. Its earnings forecast was within the 8 cents to 11 cents a share range.

Analysts were looking for 17 cents a share in earnings on revenue of $205.92 million.

Shares were up 1.6% to $16.26.

Discovery Laboratories ( DSCO) got a thumbs up from the Food and Drug Administration for Surfaxin, the company's respiratory treatment in high-risk premature infants on Tuesday.

Shares were surging by 44% to $5.40 before the bell.

-- Written by Chao Deng and Joseph Woelfel

>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Joseph Woelfel

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