Centene, Century Aluminum, Molina, Wendy’s: U.S. Equity Movers

Shares of the following companies had unusual moves in U.S. trading. Stock symbols are in parentheses and prices are as of 4 p.m. in New York.

Fertilizer producers advanced after the U.S. government said corn, soybean and spring-wheat harvests will be smaller than forecast last month. CF Industries Holdings Inc. (CF US) gained 10 percent to $164.19. Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan Inc. (POT US) added 6.6 percent to $54.44. Mosaic Co. (MOS US) increased 8.4 percent to $64.46.

A123 Systems Inc. (AONE US) rose the most in the Russell 2000 Index, rallying 45 percent to $4.60. The lithium-ion battery maker won a supply contract from General Motors Co. (GM US), according to a statement from the automaker.

Advance Auto Parts Inc. (AAP US) gained 8.4 percent, the most since February 2009, to $54.29. The auto parts retailer based in Roanoke, Virginia, posted second-quarter earnings that exceeded the average analyst projection.

AK Steel Holding Corp. (AKS US) climbed 9.8 percent, the most since May 2010, to $9.05. The third-largest U.S. steelmaker by sales was rated “buy” in new coverage by UBS AG.

AMC Networks Inc. (AMCX US) rose 13 percent to $34.31 and jumped 14 percent earlier, the most intraday since it was spun off from Cablevision Systems Corp. (CVC US) in June. The cable-television channel owner said its second-quarter revenue was $292 million, beating the average analyst estimate of $283.4 million.

AOL Inc. (AOL US) advanced 12 percent, the most since November 2009, to $11.47. The Internet company authorized a $250 million stock buyback.

Brinker International Inc. (EAT US) gained 14 percent, the most since January 2009, to $23.54. The operator of the Chili’s restaurant chain forecast 2012 profit of at least $1.80 a share excluding some items, more than the average analyst estimate of $1.76 a share.

Centene Corp. (CNC US) advanced 7.7 percent, the most since March 2010, to $28.90. The provider of managed care through U.S.-state programs for the poor was raised to “positive” from “neutral” at Susquehanna Financial Group LLLP with a 12-month price estimate of $37 a share.

Molina Healthcare Inc. (MOH US) increased 6.4 percent to $17.82. The provider of managed health care to low-income families was also raised to “positive” from “neutral” at Susquehanna with a 12-month price estimate of $25 a share.

Century Aluminum Co. (CENX US) rose 12 percent to $10.57. The second-largest U.S. producer of the metal said it will spend as much as $60 million buying back shares. The buyback program starts today, the company said in a statement.

Cisco Systems Inc. (CSCO US) increased 16 percent to $15.92 for the biggest advance in the Dow Jones Industrial Average. The world’s largest maker of networking equipment reported profit that beat analysts’ estimates after the company eliminated jobs and pared businesses.

Electronic Arts Inc. (ERTS US) rose 8.7 percent, the most since May 5, to $19.15. The second-largest U.S. video-game producer was lifted to “outperform” from “neutral” by Cowen & Co.

EnerSys (ENS US) lost 5.4 percent to $20.74, the lowest price since February 2010. The Reading, Pennsylvania-based maker and distributor of industrial batteries posted first-quarter earnings that missed the average analyst estimate by 1 cent a share.

Kohl’s Corp. (KSS US) rose 7.3 percent to $47.50, the highest price since Aug. 4. The U.S. department-store company boosted its full-year forecast, projecting earnings of $4.45 a share at least. Analysts, on average, estimated $4.41, according to a Bloomberg Survey.

News Corp. (NWSA US) gained 18 percent, the most in the S&P 500, to $16.19. The owner of Fox TV and the Wall Street Journal posted profit that beat analysts’ estimates and raised its dividend 27 percent, cushioning investor losses after a phone-hacking scandal hurt the stock. Rupert Murdoch, chairman and chief executive officer, said the company’s board of directors wants him to remain in his current roles.

Open Text Corp. (OTEX US) plunged 9.3 percent, the most since April 2010, to $52.15. Canada’s largest software company said its fourth-quarter earnings excluding some items were $1.08 a share, missing the average analyst estimate of $1.11 a share.

TPC Group Inc. (TPCG US) surged 23 percent, the most since August 2009, to $35.01. The maker of petrochemical-derived products said second-quarter profit increased to $2.12 a share as sales jumped 49 percent from a year earlier.

Wendy’s Co. (WEN US) increased 9.2 percent, the most since June 2009, to $4.97. The operator of the Wendy’s fast-food chain affirmed its forecast of 2011 earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization.

Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO US) gained 9.3 percent, the most since December 2008, to $12.86. Alibaba.com Ltd., the unit of China’s biggest e-commerce company that serves business owners, reported second quarter profit that beat analyst estimates. Yahoo is the biggest shareholder in the company’s parent, Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.

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