Yahoo Earnings Jump

Yellow Corp. climbs; Helen of Troy advances; plus more of today's stocks in the news

After the close of trading Wednesday, Yahoo! posted 8 cents second-quarter earnings per share, vs. 3 cents, in line with analysts' average estimates. Revenue rose 42% to $321.4 million. The Internet company raised its revenue forecast for the year, predicting high demand for online advertising and fee-based services.

Thomas Weisel says McData 's (MCDTA ) second quarter looks to be on track, but competitive pressures could limit the upside.

Merrill upgraded DuPont Photomask (DPMI ) to neutral from sell.

Bear Stearns upgraded Yellow Corp. (YELL ) to outperform from peer perform after upgrading from underperform on Tuesday. Tuesday said it agreed to acquire rival Roadway for $48 per share.

Helen of Troy (HELE ) posted 50 cents (including an 8-cent gain) vs. 22 cents first-quarter earnings per share on a 4% sales rise. The company raised the $1.45-$1.50 fiscal 2004 EPS guidance to $1.75-$1.80, and sees 9%-12% sales growth.

Morgan Stanley sees short-term negative developments regarding Altria Group 's (MO ) Miles bond in Illinois, and lower-than-expected second-quarter unit volume growth at Philip Morris International.

Citigroup upgraded BJ's Wholesale Club (BJ ) to outperform from in-line.

Microsoft (MSFT ) says employees will be granted stock awards instead of stock options. Starting with fiscal 2004, Microsoft will begin expensing all equity-based compensation, including previously granted stock options. S&P reiterated its strong buy opinion on the shares.

Logitech (LOGI ) sees $7 million to $8 million first-quarter operating income, below the previous $14 million target, citing lower gross margin, slow retail business, and pricing competition.

Cisco Systems (CSCO ) CEO John Chambers reportedly said he expects a recovery in corporate spending on information technology in the next two months to four months and that investments by telecom and Internet companies should follow with a recovery within two to six quarters, according to a Dutch daily newspaper.

R.J. Reynolds (RJR ) is in talks to merge its U.S. tobacco operations with those of Brown & Williamson Tobacco, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Prudential upgraded Citigroup (C ) to hold from sell.

Albany International (AIN ) sees 49 cents second-quarter earnings per share (including a 3-cent charge).

Wolverine World Wide (WWW ) posted 23 cents vs. 21 cents second-quarter earnings per share on a 8.7% revenue rise, and sees $1.21-$1.24 2003 earnings per share, and $875 million to $885 million in revenues.

Alcoa (AA ) posted 27 cents vs. 28 cents second-quarter GAAP earnings per share from continuing operations as higher costs offset a 5.9% revenue rise. Morgan Stanley reportedly downgraded.

Pechiney (PY ) rejected Alcan Alumuinum's unsolicited 3.4 billion euro takeover offer, saying the price is "clearly inadequate."

Papa John's International Pizza (PZZA ) posted 6.1% lower June domestic systemwide comp sales, and 4.8% lower second-quarter sales.

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