ImClone Climbs as Waskal Admits Tax Evasion

Firstwave Tech advances; Capital One drops as CFO exits; plus more of today's stocks in the news

ImClone Systems (IMCL ) shares rose after founder Sam Waskal, who pleaded guilty to insider trading and other crimes, admitted that he avoided paying sales taxes on $15 million of art purchases. The news removed some investor uncertainty toward the shares of the biotech firm.

FirstWave Technology (FSTW ), a provider of customer relationship management solutions, received the largest purchase order in its history, covering $1.15 million in licenses.

Capital One Financial (COF ) says executive vice president and CFO David Willey has resigned after he received a Wells notice from SEC staff indicating it intends to recommend that the SEC bring civil action against Willey.

Facilities service provider ABM Industries (ABM ) lowered the first quarter earnings per share guidance to eight cents to nine cents. Thomas Weisel cut estimates. S&P reiterates hold.

Sources familiar with Royal Gold (RGLD ) but short on its stock say it appears overvalued as the stock trades at 65 times earnings per share, and 30 times trailing sales, according to Barron's.

Rodman & Renshaw upgraded Tivo (TIVO ) to market outperform from market perform.

America Superconductor (AMSC ) won a multi-year $70 million U.S.Navy contract to design and build an HTS electric propulsion motor. The company expects revenue for the first 12 months starting March 1, 2003 to be about $24 million.

UBS Warburg upgraded Symantec (SYMC ) to buy from neutral, helping to lift shares higher. AG Edwards upgraded to buy from hold. The stock fell 18% on Friday after the company held an analyst meeting in California.

Wedbush Morgan downgraded AnnTaylor (ANN ) to hold from buy, noting that the macroeconomic and geopolitical environment is weighing on the softlines sector.

First Data (FDC ) confirmed that it was notified by Bank One of its plan to move its card processing business when the current contract expires in June 2004. Bank One says it has selected Total System Services (TSS ) to upgrade and eventually insource its credit card processing.

Calpine (CPN ) determined, in consultation with its independent auditor, that two sale-leaseback transactions, previously accounted for as operating leases, will be recorded as financing transactions. The transactions will affect 2000, 2001, and 2002 results.

HSBC Holdings (HBC ) posted $228 million vs. $195 million (excluding a charge) fourth quarter net income.

Palm (PALM ) lowered its third quarter revenue forecast to $205 million to $210 million due to lower-than-expected demand at the high end of the market in the U.S., and continued weakness in IT spending in the handheld segment. Bernstein keeps its outperform rating.

Procter & Gamble (PG ) has been in talks to buy Wella, a German hair-care concern, for $5 billion to $6 billion. Wella would help P&G in its growing rivalry with L'Oreal, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Furniture Brands (FBN ) lowered the first quarter earnings per share guidance to the 50 cents to 55 cents range, and trimmed the revenue estimate to down 2% to 3%, citing a continuing soft buisness environment.

Shire Pharmaceuticals (SHPGY ) received an FDA approvable letter for Fosrenol, a treatment for high phosphate levels in blood, asking for additional data and analysis. Shire reiterated its plans for a U.S. product launch forecast of late 2003.

HealthSouth (HRC ) posted five cents vs. 22 cents fourth quarter earnings per share from operations on 17% lower revenue. The operator of rehabilitation centers says it is comfortable with the 13 cents first quarter and 55 cents 2003 earnings per share guidance, and reiterated its expectation that capital spending will not exceed $400 million for the year.

ExpressJet (XJT ) sees 15.5% compound annual growth in available seat miles for the period from 2002 to 2007.

Priority Healthcare (PHCC ) signed a long-term exclusive pharmacy service agreement with Wal-Mart, which will be phased in over the next two years.

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