News Corp. Bids for Dow Jones

BP's Lord Brown steps down; Circuit City warns about weak April sales and first quarter loss; plus more stocks in the news Tuesday

Dow Jones DJ Confirms it received an unsolicited takeover offer of $60 per share from News Corp., payable in cash or a combination of cash and stock. Says the Dow Jones board, members, and trustees of the Bancroft family are evaluating the proposal.

BP BP Announces that Lord Brown has decided to step down as CEO for personal reasons. The Board appoints his designated successor, Dr. Tony Hayward, as the new CEO with immediate effect.

Procter & Gamble PG Posts $0.74 vs. $0.63 third quarter earnings per share (EPS) on an 8.4% net sales rise. Sees $0.64 to $0.66 fourth quarter EPS. Raises fiscal year 2007 EPS guidance to between $3.01 and $3.03.

Circuit City CC Sees $80 million to $90 million first quarter loss from continuing operations on weak April sales; notes a change in its t.v. business. Revises third quarter and fourth quarter fiscal year 2007 results.

Automatic Data Processing ADP Posts $0.65 vs. $0.54 third quarter earnings per share from continuing operations on a 14% revenue rise. Believes it will attain the high end of its fiscal year 2007 EPS from continuing operations forecast of $1.79 to $1.83.

Avon Products AVP Posts $0.34 vs. $0.12 first quarter EPS on 9.1% higher revenue.

Qwest Communications Q Posts $0.12 vs. $0.05 first quarter EPS as lower costs and expenses offset a slight drop in revenue.

Liz Claiborne LIZ Posts $0.16 vs. $0.45 first quarter EPS on a 1.6% sales drop. Says it has seen the acceleration of many of the negative trends that have impacted its wholesale business over the past few years. Sets $1.90 to $2.05 adjusted 2007 EPS guidance.

Wet Seal WTSLA Sees April same-store sales falling 8% to 10%, vs. the prior forecast of a low-single-digit drop. Notes that Easter came a week earlier this year, causing a shift in sales from April into March. Now sees first quarter same-store sales up 2% to 3%.

Comcast CMCSA Says that from 2007 to 2009 it expects cable revenue to grow a compounded average of 12% per year, and cable operating cash flow to grow a compounded average of 14% per year.

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