Microsoft Second-Quarter Profit Slips

Kodak climbs; Sandisk tumbles; plus more of today's stocks in the news

After the close of trading Thursday, Microsoft (MSFT ) posted second-quarter earnings per share of 14 cents, vs. 17 cents. Excluding stock-based compensation expenses, the software giant reported 34 cents earnings per share, up from 29 cents -- analysts were expecting an average of 30 cents earnings per share. Microsoft's revenues rose 19%, to $10.15 billion. In the third quarter (Mar.), the company sees earnings per share in the range of 28 cents to 29 cents.

Eastman Kodak (EK ) posted 70 cents (excluding charges), vs. 65 cents fourth-quarter earnings per share from continuing operations on a 10% sales rise. Kodak sees 80 cents to $1.30 2004 earnings per share (GAAP). The company will reduce total facility square footage by one third, and cut worldwide employment by 20%, or 12,000 to 15,000 employees.

Sandisk (SNDK ) posted 94 cents, vs. 26 cents fourth-quarter earnings per share on a sharp revenue rise. The company sees a "modest" seasonal decline in product revenues of 5% to 10% sequentially. Sandisk sees $1.5 billion to $1.75 billion 2004 total revenue, and set a 2-for-1 stock split.

Performance Food (PFGC ) sees 24 cents to 26 cents fourth-quarter earnings per share, and $1.52 to $1.54 2003 earnings per share. The company cited factors in its Fresh-Cut, Broadline, and Customized Divisions. AG Edwards downgraded to hold from buy.

Xilinx (XLNX ) posted 19 cents third-quarter earnings per share, vs. a 1 cent loss on a 29% revenue rise. Xilinx sees 7% to 10% fourth-quarter sequential revenue growth. S&P upgraded to buy from accumulate. Schwab SoundView, Banc of America, and Wachovia also upgraded the shares.

EBay (EBAY ) posted 24 cents fourth-quarter earnings per share (pro forma) on 57% higher revenue. The online auction giant posted 21 cents fourth-quarter earnings per share (GAAP). EBay believes 2004 revenue could be as high as $3 billion, with earnings per share as high as 99 cents (GAAP). Goldman reiterates outperform.

Mercury Interactive (MERQ ) posted 14 cents, vs. 21 cents fourth-quarter earnings per share (GAAP) despite a 29% revenue rise. The company sees 12 cents to 18 cents first-quarter 2004 earnings per share (GAAP).

NetFlix (NFLX ) posted 7 cents fourth-quarter earnings per share, vs. a 10 cents loss (GAAP). The online video subscription company sees a $1.2 million to $3.7 million first-quarter GAAP net loss, and a $14.6 million to $21.6 million 2004 GAAP net income. NetFlix set a 2-for-1 split. The CFO will leave the company. Pacific Growth upped its estimates, and First Albany upped its price target on the shares.

Cardinal Health (CAH ) posted 87 cents, vs. 82 cents second-quarter earnings per share from continuing operations on an 11% revenue rise. Cardinal reiterated the fiscal 2004 guidance of mid-teens or better earnings per share growth, before special items, and operating cash flow of about $1.3 billion. S&P reiterates buy.

Starbucks (SBUX ) posted 27 cents, vs. 20 cents first-quarter earnings per share on a 28% revenue rise. Starbucks narrowed the 84 cents to 87 cents fiscal 2004 earnings per share forecast range to 86 cents to 87 cents. S&P upgraded to avoid from sell.

AT&T (T ) posted fourth-quarter earnings per share of 43 cents, vs. 66 cents one year earlier, on a 13% total revenue decline. The long-distance carrier sees a 7% to 10% consolidated revenue decline in 2004.

Ford Motor (F ) posted a 43-cent fourth-quarter loss per share, vs. a 7-cent loss, despite an 11% total sales and revenue rise. Ford sees 40 cents to 45 cents first-quarter earnings per share from continuing operations, and $1.20 to $1.30 earnings per share in 2004.

Computer Associates (CA ) posted 4 cents third-quarter earnings per share, vs. an 8 cents loss (GAAP) on a 12% revenue rise. The company sees $845 million to $865 million in fourth-quarter revenue, and 3 cents to 5 cents earnings per share (GAAP). For fiscal 2004, Computer Associates sees $3.29 billion to $3.31 billion in revenue, and a loss per share of 5 cents to 7 cents (GAAP).

Qualcomm (QCOM ) posted 43 cents, vs. 30 cents first-quarter earnings per share on a 13% revenue rise. The mobile-phone maker sees 34 cents to 37 cents total second-quarter earnings per share, and $1.41-$1.46 total fiscal 2004 earnings per share. S&P reiterates buy.

Nokia (NOK ) posted 29 euro cents ($0.37), vs. 26 euro cents fourth-quarter earnings per share (pro forma) despite a 1% net sales decline. The handset maker sees 17 euro cents to 19 euro cents in first-quarter earnings per share, and a 3% to 7% net sales rise.

Drugmaker Wyeth (WYE ) posted 60 cents, vs. 65 cents fourth-quarter earnings per share from operations as higher selling costs offset 14% higher worldwide net revenue (including foreign exchange).

Health Care Properties (HCP ) set a 2-for-1 stock split.

Southwest Airlines (LUV ) posted 8 cents, vs. 5 cents fourth-quarter earnings per share on an 8.3% total operating revenue rise.

Great Lakes REIT (GL ) agreed to be acquired by Aslan Realty Partners II, L.P., an affiliate of Transwestern Investment Company. Transwestern agreed to pay no less than $4.98 per share in cash to holders of Great Lakes upon closing.

AT&T Wireless (AWE ) posted a 3-cent fourth-quarter loss, vs. a 5-cent loss on 4.4% higher service revenue. The board decided to explore strategic alternatives, but says there's no assurance any transaction will occur.

BellSouth (BLS ) posted 51 cents, vs. 45 cents fourth-quarter earnings per share (normalized) on a 4.1% revenue rise.

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