JP Morgan Skids on Accounting News

Northrop bids for TRW, jury finds against Solutia in PCB case, plus more of today's stocks in the news

A press report says that the Federal Reserve is examining JP Morgan Chase's (JPM ) accounting for commodity-related trades with Enron according to internal central bank documents.

Northrop Grumman (NOC ) made an unsolicited offer to acquire TRW Inc. (TRW ) for $47 per share in Northrop stock. Also on Friday, S&P Ratings placed TRW on CreditWatch with negative implications.

Jurors reach verdict against Solutia (SOI ) and its former parent Monsanto (MON ) in a trial accusing a chemical plant of contaminating an Alabama town with hazardous PCBs.

ST Robinson Humphrey upgraded FPIC Insurance (FPIC ) to buy from outperform. On Feb. 21, the company posted a fourth quarter operating loss of $0.43 vs. a $1.49 loss on a 22% revenue rise.

CIBC World and SoundView each downgraded JDS Uniphase (JDSU ) to hold from buy.

Andrx Group (ADRX ) posted $0.06 vs. $0.25 fourth quarter (pro forma, excluding Cybear Group results) despite a 37% revenue rise. CS First Boston downgraded the shares to hold from buy. Bear Stearns, UBS Warburg cut estimates.

Autodesk (ADSK ) posted $0.65 fourth quarter EPS (pro forma) on a 4.5% revenue rise. The company sees $0.40-$0.50 first quarter EPS (pro forma) on $240-$250 million in revenues, and $2.20-$2.30 fiscal 2003 EPS (pro forma) on $1.025-$1.045 billion in revenues. Merrill upgraded its rating on the sharess, while CSFB raised its estimates.

Saks Inc. (SKS ) says preliminary $0.50 fourth quarter and $0.17 full-year fiscal 2002 EPS (before certain items) exceeded First Call estimates of $0.48 and $0.14, respectively. Robertson Stephens raised its estimates.

Computer Associates (CA ) shares tumbled after the company said it had not drawn on credit lines to pay down commercial paper obligations. Salomon SB downgraded the shares to neutral.

Xilinx (XLNX ) raised fourth quarter revenue guidance to up 10% sequentially. S&P maintains its accumulate rating and raised its estimates. JP Morgan reportedly upgraded Xilinx and Altera (ALTR ) to long term buy.

Circuit City Group (CC ) says January and February sales for Circuit City stores were below estimates, and that it sees a $0.03 per-share impact on earnings from lease termination costs. The company sees EPS of $0.70-$0.74 for the fourth quarter and $0.89-$0.93 for all of fiscal 2002. It sees a $0.06 impact in fiscal 2002 from remodeling, and $0.18 in fiscal 2003. The company says it will spin off its CarMax (KMX ) used-car retailing division.

JP Morgan reportedly downgraded General Dynamics (GD ) to market perform from long term buy.

JD Edwards (JDEC ) posted $0.03 first quarter EPS vs. breakeven results (pro forma) as lower costs offset an 8.2% revenue decline.

BEA Systems (BEAS ) posted $0.07 vs. $0.10 fourth quarter EPS (pro forma) on a 9.6% revenue decline. S&P keeps its hold opinion and cut its estimate.

Amgen Inc. (AMGN ) plans to raise about $2.5 billion through an offering of 30-year zero-coupon senior notes, convertible into common stock.

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