Cisco Tops Targets

AIG tumbles on a charge; Genzyme drops on a warning; plus more of today's stocks in the news

After the close of trading Tuesday, networking products manufacturer Cisco (CSCO ) posted 15 cents pro forma second quarter earnings per share, vs. nine cents a year ago -- beating analysts' average estimates by two cents. Revenue fell slightly to $4.7 billion.

Jones Apparel (JNY ) says it is in talks with Polo Ralph Lauren to possibly restructure their license pacts. Wedbush Morgan cut Jones to hold from buy. S&P downgraded to hold.

Hewitt Assosciates (HEW ) posted 30 cents vs. 31 cents first quarter core earnings per share despite a 19% revenue rise, and thinks fiscal 2003 revenue growth will be at the low-end of the previously guided 15%-18% range.

Clark/Bardes (CBC ) sees weaker than expected 51 cents to 54 cents fourth quarter earnings per share, citing sluggish new business sales in its Executive Benefits Practice unit, and a slow ramp-up in sales from the start-up of its Human Capital Practice business.

Genzyme General (GENZ ) sees lower than expected $1.25-$1.35 2003 earnings per share prior to amortization. The company says selling, general, and administrative spending reflects the full-year impact of a significant step-up in worldwide sales and marketing efforts for Renagel. Gerard Klauer keeps its neutral rating.

American Superconductor (AMSC ) posted a 60-cent third quarter loss vs. a 53-cent loss on a 22% revenue decline. The company sees a loss of $2.07 to $2.23 for fiscal 2003. Adams Harkness downgraded to reduce.

Chubb (CB ) posted 48 cents vs. 21 cents fourth quarter operating earnings per share on 33% higher net premiums written. The results were impacted by additions to asbestos-related reserves. Chubb sees $4.60 to $5.00 2003 operating earnings per share. S&P keeps buy.

Myriad Genetics (MYGN ) posted a 27-cent second quarter loss vs. a 10-cent loss. The company announced the discovery of a new gene named DEP1 that causes depression. S&P reiterates hold.

Shares of American International Group (AIG ) moved sharply lower after the company said it will take a $1.8 billion after-tax charge as it sets aside cash to pay higher than expected claims by U.S. businesses to cover the cost of sick workers and corporate directors facing lawsuits. S&P cut to avoid from accumulate, while Raymond James cut to market peform. Salomon trimmed its estimates.

After a delayed opening, shares of Oxford Health (OHP ) headed lower after company posted 84 cents vs. $1.00 fourth-quarter earnings per share as higher costs offset a 15% revenue rise. Salomon Smith Barney downgraded the shares to in-line from outperform.

Republic Service (RSG ) posted fourth-quarter earnings per share of 35 cents vs. 28 cents (adjusted) on a 7.4% revenue rise. The company lowered is 2003 EPS guidance. S&P reiterates accumulate. Deutsche Bank keeps hold.

JP Morgan downgraded Interpublic (IPG ) to underweight from neutral.

Argonaut Group (AGII )delayed release of its fourth-quarter earnings in order to complete a previously announced study of its reserves relating to asbestos and environmental liabilities. Argonaut deferred consideration of a quarterly dividend.

Hologic (HOLX ) posted worse than expected first quarter loss of 5 cents per share vs. a loss of 10 cents on a 3% revenue rise. S&P downgraded the shares to hold from accumulate.

Colgate-Palmolive (CL ) posted 59 cents vs. 49 cents fourth quarter earnings per share on a 3.9% revenue rise.

AaiPharma (AAII ) raised the $1.53-$1.58 2003 earnings per share estimate to $1.58-$1.65, and raised the $270 million to $275 million revenue estimate to $275 million to $280 million. The company says the FDA approved its abbreviated new drug application for Azasan 75 mg. and 100 mg. tablets. The company set a 3-for-2 stock split.

General Electric's (GE ) GE Consumer Finance unit will acquire First National's secured and unsecured lending business from Abbey National for 848 million British pounds.

Celgene (CELG ) says its Revimid received fast track designation from the FDA for the treatment of relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma.

CVS Corp. (CVS ) posted 5.8% higher January same store sales, and 7.2% higher total sales.

Walgreen (WAG ) posted 7.7% higher January same store sales, and 13% higher total sales.

Perry Ellis (PERY ) will acquire Salant Corp. in a $91 million deal. Terms: $9.37 per Salant share, comprised of at least $5.35 in cash and not more than $4.02 of Perry Ellis stock.

Solectron (SLR ) inked a supply and manufacturing pact with Hewlett-Packard, valued at $1.4 billion over five years. S&P reiterates hold.

Tellabs (TLAB ) CFO Joan Ryan resigned.

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