Cendant to Split into Four Parts

Merck earnings rise despite revenue drop; Kroger reportedly checking out bid for Albertson's; plus more of Monday's stocks in the news

Cendant (CD ) said its board approved a plan to separate into four independent, publicly traded companies: one each for its real estate, travel distribution, hospitality, and vehicle rental businesses. Cendant shareholders will own 100% of equity in all four companies.

Merck (MRK ) posted 65 cents vs. 60 cents third quarter earnings per share despite a 2.2% sales drop. It noted that the sales drop reflects a decrease of 3% related to the Vioxx withdrawal, offset by other revenue growth of 1%. It sees between $2.47 and $2.51 2005 earnings per share, excluding 29 cents in net tax charges.

Silicon Labs (SLAB ) posted better-than-expected 26 cents vs. 39 cents third quarter EPS (GAAP) as higher operating costs offset 14% lower revenue. The company sees $104-$108 million in fourth quarter revenue. S&P raises target, reiterates hold.

Goody's Family Clothing (GDYS ) received an all-cash buyout bid of $8.85 per Goody's share from Prentice Capital Management, LP and GMM Capital LLC. Goody's determined the offer is a superior proposal to the recent bid made by affiliates of Sun Capital Partners.

Schering-Plough (SGP ) posted 3 cents vs. 1 cent third quarter earnings per share (GAAP) on a 15% rise in revenue.

Kroger (KR ) has submitted a preliminary bid for Albertson's (ABS ) supermarkets, according to two people, adding a new competitor to private-equity firms that have been main suitors of the company, according the Wall Street Journal.

Reebok (RBK ) posted $1.87 (including items) vs. $1.34 third quarter earnings per share on 10% lower sales. It sees 55 cents to 65 cents fourth quarter earnings per share (excluding merger related and other unusual items).

Arch Coal (ACI ) posted 26 cents (excluding special items) vs. 18 cents third quarter earnings per share on a 28% revenue rise.

AMLI Residential Properties Trust (AML ) agreed to be acquired by Morgan Stanley Real Estate's Prime Property Fund (PRIME) in an all-cash transaction totaling about $2.1 billion, in which AMLI holders get $37.75 per share in cash.

Ethan Allen Interiors (ETH ) posted 49 cents vs. 51 cents first quarter earnings per share as restructuring and impairment charges offset a 9.1% revenue rise.

Pilgrim's Pride (PPC ) raised its 90 cents to $1.00 fourth quarter earnings per share to $1.07 to $1.12 due to better results in both its U.S. and Mexico chicken operations.

CBIZ (CBIZ ) received a subpoena from the New York Attorney General requesting information regarding the issue of broker compensation.

Oneok (OKE ) raised its four cents third quarter earnings per share from continuing operations guidance to 47 cents to 51 cents. It raised its $1.92 to $1.98 2005 earnings per share from continuing operations guidance to between $3.59 and $3.63. It set preliminary 2006 earnings per share guidance of $1.97 to $2.03.

Barnes Group (B ) posted 55 cents vs. 40 cents third quarter earnings per share from continuing operations on 11% higher revenue. It raised its 2005 earnings per share guidance to between $2.15 and $2.20.

First Bancorp (FBP ) said the Securities and Exchange Commission issued a formal order of investigation, which appears to relate to, among other things, transactions in which the bank acquired a substantial number of mortgage loans from other Puerto Rican financial institutions.

Biovail (BVF ) said the Food and Drug Administration confirmed that Biovail's once-daily extended-release formulation of tramadol has received three years of exclusivity, covering all dosages. Merrill reportedly upgraded the stock to buy from neutral.

Visteon (VC ) said results of an independent review are consistent with preliminary conclusions announced 8/1/05. It expects a restatement of 2002, 2003, and 2004 results to increase its net loss by 4%, 2%, and 3%, respectively.

Highland Hospital (HIH ) inked a deal to acquire the 385-room Hilton Boston Back Bay hotel for $110 million, or about $286,000 per room.

Triad Hospitals (TRI ) posted 53 cents vs. 64 cents third quarter earnings per share despite a 9.6% revenue rise. It sees between 69 cents and 71 cents fourth quarter earnings per share. It narrowed its $2.82 to $2.90 2005 earnings per share from continuing operations guidance to between $2.82 and 2.84. Beyond 2005, it sees annual earnings per share growth in the mid-teens percent range.

Quantum Fuel Systems Technologies Worldwide (QTWW ) said it has been awarded a contract by Lockheed Martin (LMT ) to develop a hydrogen and oxygen fuel storage module for a regenerative power supply system for space exploration.

Silicon Laboratories (SLAB ) posted better-than-expected 26 cents vs. 39 cents third quarter earnings per share (GAAP) as higher operating costs offset 14% lower revenue. It sees $104 million to $108 million fourth quarter revenue.

Veeco Instruments(VECO ) posted 5 cents third quarter earnings per share vs. 7 cents loss (GAAP) on 3% higher revenue. It sees 3 cents to 9 cents fourth quarter earnings per share (GAAP) on $100 million to $105 million in revenue. It kept its 2005 guidance of flat revenue and significantly improved profitability compared to 2004.

Natural Alternatives (NAII ) posted 6 cents vs. 13 cents first quarter earnings per share on 4% lower sales.

Insteel Industries (IIIN ) posted 67 cents vs. $1.06 fourth quarter earnings per share on 10% lower sales.

America Service (ASGR ) said its Audit Committee of Board of Directors is conducting an internal investigation into certain matters related to its subsidiary, Secure Pharmacy Plus.

Albany Molecular (AMRI ) is in a licensing agreement with Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY ) for its broad program of compounds that encompass biogenic amine reuptake inhibitors in development for treatment of depression and other central nervous system disorders.

Ceradyne (CRDN ) received a $47.8 million delivery order for its lightweight ceramic body armor.

Engelhard (EC ) posted 48 cents vs. 48 cents third quarter earnings per share from continuing operations on a 21% rise in revenue. It sees higher sales and earnings per share for 2005 vs. a year ago.

Astec Industries (ASTE ) posted 47 cents vs. 4 cents third quarter earnings per share on a 34% revenue rise.

Union Bankshares (UBSH ) posted 78 cents vs. 51 cents third quarter earnings per share (GAAP) on a 19% rise in net interest income.

Bank Of Hawaii (BOH ) posted 85 cents (including after-tax provision) vs. 78 cents third quarter earnings per share on 3.2% higher net interest income.

Rayonier (RYN ) posted 96 cents vs. 33 cents third quarter earnings per share from continuing operations on a 3.1% sales rise. It expects fourth quarter results to be well above the year-ago level, but somewhat below third quarter 2005 results.

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