Corning, DuPont, EMC, Travelers, Verizon: U.S. Equity Preview

Shares of the following companies may have unusual moves in U.S. trading. Stock symbols are in parentheses, and prices are as of 8 a.m. in New York.

Albemarle Corp. (ALB US): The maker of specialty chemicals said it had fourth-quarter sales of $605 million, more than the average estimate of $576 million by analysts in a Bloomberg survey.

American Express Co. (AXP US): The biggest U.S. credit-card issuer by purchases reported a charge of $74 million, or 6 cents a share, tied to job cuts in its servicing network. Excluding the fourth-quarter charge, AmEx would have earned 94 cents a share, less than the average estimate of 96 cents by analysts in a Bloomberg survey. Preliminary results were released Jan. 19.

American International Group Inc. (AIG US): The insurer majority owned by the U.S. Treasury Department said Robert Benmosche expects to be able to remain chief executive officer until sometime in 2012 as he battles cancer.

Amgen Inc. (AMGN US): The Thousand Oaks, California-based company said it agreed to buy private cancer drug company Biovex Group Inc. for up to $1 billion: $425 million up front and as much as $575 million in additional payments. Amgen said it had fourth-quarter adjusted earnings of $1.17 a share. The average analyst estimate in a Bloomberg survey was for $1.11.

Baker Hughes Inc. (BHI US) rose 4.4 percent to $61.10. The oilfield contractor that acquired BJ Services Co. last year reported a four-fold increase in fourth-quarter profit as higher prices lifted demand for drilling equipment in North America. Excluding acquisition-related costs and an investment gain, earnings were 84 cents a share, 19 cents higher than the average of analysts’ estimates.

BlackRock Inc. (BLK US): The world’s biggest money manager said fourth-quarter profit more than doubled as the stock-market rally lifted assets. Excluding certain costs, BlackRock earned $3.42 a share, beating the average estimate of $2.89 per share of 13 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

CSX Corp. (CSX US) rose 1.3 percent to $68.62. The second-largest publicly traded U.S. railroad posted a quarterly profit of $1.14 a share, surpassing the average of $1.09 a share, according to estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

Cheesecake Factory Inc. (CAKE US): The restaurant chain said it has entered into an exclusive licensing agreement with the Kuwait-based Alshaya group of companies to open 22 restaurants in the Middle East.

Corning Inc. (GLW US) climbed 1.2 percent to $19.88. The world’s biggest maker of glass for flat-panel televisions reported fourth-quarter sales of $1.77 billion, beating the average estimate of $1.61 billion by analysts in a Bloomberg survey.

DuPont Co. (DD US): The third-biggest U.S. chemical maker posted fourth-quarter earnings that beat analysts’ estimates as paint-pigment and solar-materials jumped and the company paid tax at a lower rate. The company also raised its 2011 profit forecast.

Eastman Kodak Co. (EK US) slumped 9.6 percent to $4.72. The 130-year-old camera company lost a U.S. trade ruling that may hamper its effort to collect patent royalties from Apple Inc. and Research In Motion Ltd.

EMC Corp. (EMC US): The world’s biggest maker of storage computers reported a 61 percent increase in fourth-quarter profit after companies upgraded their data centers. Excluding some costs, profit was 42 cents, beating the 41-cent average of analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

FNB Corp. (FNB US): The Pennsylvania bank said fourth-quarter earnings excluding some items were 21 cents a share, beating the average 14-cent projection of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

Harley-Davidson Inc. (HOG US): The biggest U.S. motorcycle maker said its fourth-quarter loss narrowed to $46.8 million as its financial-services unit earned a profit. The net loss of 20 cents a share compares with a loss of 94 cents a year earlier. The average estimate of nine analysts surveyed by Bloomberg was for a net loss of 30 cents.

Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. (JEC US): The third-largest listed U.S. engineering company increased its profit forecast, saying it expects to earn $2.40 to $2.85 a share in fiscal 2011.

KeyCorp (KEY US) gained 3 percent to $8.87. Ohio’s second-largest bank posted a fourth-quarter profit, beating analysts’ estimates, as lower credit costs helped the company rebound from a loss. Net income of 33 cents a share compared with a year-earlier loss of 30 cents. The average estimate of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg was net income of 14 cents a share.

Packaging Corp. of America (PKG US): The maker of corrugated packaging forecast profit excluding some items of 42 cents a share in the first quarter, trailing the 45-cent average analyst estimate in a Bloomberg survey.

Regions Financial Corp. (RF US): The Alabama lender that holds $3.5 billion in government bailout funds reported its first profit in seven quarters as provisions for future loan losses declined.

RLI Corp. (RLI US): The specialty property and casualty insurer posted fourth-quarter earnings of $1.66 a share, beating the average analyst estimate by 69 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Tellabs Inc. (TLAB US) tumbled 18 percent to $5.80. The maker of telecommunications equipment forecast first-quarter revenue of $335 million at most. The average analyst estimate in a Bloomberg survey was for sales of $401.8 million.

Texas Instruments Inc. (TXN US) fell 2.5 percent to $33.80. The largest analog chipmaker forecast first-quarter earnings that may be as low as 54 cents a share, compared with the average analyst estimate for 57 cents, according to a Bloomberg survey. Revenue this quarter may also fall short of estimates, the company said.

TiVo Inc. (TIVO US): The pioneer of digital-video recording slipped after Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) filed a complaint with the International Trade Commission seeking to prevent the Alviso, California-based company from importing TV set-top boxes.

Travelers Cos. (TRV US) rose 3.4 percent to $57.50. The top gainer among financial firms in the Dow Jones Industrial Average last year said fourth-quarter profit fell 30 percent as catastrophe costs climbed and investment gains narrowed. Operating profit, which excludes some investment results, was $1.89 a share, beating the $1.66 average estimate of 19 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ US): The second-largest U.S. phone company reported fourth-quarter profit that missed analysts’ estimates as customers spent less on voice plans. Earnings, excluding pension, severance and merger-integration items, rose to 54 cents a share from 50 cents a year earlier, Verizon said in a statement today. The average estimate from analysts surveyed by Bloomberg was 55 cents.

VMware Inc. (VMW US) fell 4.8 percent to $83.50. The biggest maker of programs that let computers run multiple operating systems said it sees no operating-margin expansion in 2011.

Waters Corp. (WAT US) rose 1.3 percent to $79.25. The maker of laboratory products and instruments reported fourth-quarter adjusted earnings of $1.38 a share, beating the average analyst estimate of $1.31 a share in a Bloomberg survey.

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