Stocks to Watch: News Corp., Groupon, Priceline

NEW YORK -- News Corp. ( NWSA) posted first-quarter earnings that beat analysts' estimates on double-digit increases for subscriber fees at its cable networks, including Fox News Channel.

News Corp. reported on Wednesday adjusted earnings per share of 36 cents for the quarter ended in March, beating analysts' estimates of 35 cents a share. Sales increased 14% to $9.5 billion, also beating estimates of $9.2 billion.

Fees that News Corp. charges pay-TV providers to carry programming such as "American Idol" as well as sporting events increased 11% for the company's U.S. properties and 42% among international channels. Advertising revenue at the domestic cable channels grew 2% in the quarter from the same period a year ago.

The quarterly report is the last before News Corp. splits its newspaper and magazines from the company's networks and film divisions.

News Corp. Beats Estimates, Shares Rise After Close


Groupon ( GRPN), the daily deals Web site, posted first-quarter revenue that exceeded forecasts.

Groupon said revenue rose 8% to $601.4 million in the March-ended quarter from $559.3 million in the year-earlier period..

The loss in the first quarter narrowed to $3.99 million, or a penny a share, from a year-earlier loss of $11.695 million, or 2 cents a share.

Excluding special items, earnings were 3 cents a share, in line with analysts' expectations.

Groupon Surges on Revenue Beat


Green Mountain Coffee Roasters ( GMCR) said fiscal second-quarter earnings jumped 42%, and it raised its earnings forecast for the full year.

Green Mountain said sales of single-serve coffee packs rose 26% from a year earlier, offsetting a decrease in sales of Keurig brewing systems.

Revenue in the quarter rose 14% to $1 billion.

Separately, Starbucks ( SBUX) said it signed a new five-year contract to make single-serve packs for Keurig brewing machines, expanding the companies' partnership beyond North America.


Cablevision Systems ( CVC) is expected by Wall Street on Thursday to post first-quarter earnings of 4 cents a share on revenue of $1.55 billion.


Dish Network ( DISH) is forecast to post first-quarter net income of 53 cents a share on revenue of $3.61 billion.


Wall Street expects Priceline.com ( PCLN) on Thursday to post first-quarter earnings of $5.27 a share on sales of $1.28 billion.


-- Written by Joseph Woelfel

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