Movers: SLM, Alcan, Chaparral Steel, Liz Claiborne

Wednesday's stocks in the news

SLM Corp. (SLM) is lower on news that an investor group led by J.C. Flowers & Co. believes its pending $25 billion buyout of SLM may fail because of current legislative proposals. S&P maintains hold opinion on the stock.

Compuware (CPWR) expects breakeven first quarter on revenue of about $278 million, based on software license revenue of about $47 million, maintenance revenue of about $113.5 million, and professional services revenue of about $117.5 million. S&P downgrades the stock to sell.

Chaparral Steel (CHAP) agrees to be acquired by Gerdau AmeriSteel for $86.00 per share in cash.

Strayer Education (STRA) rises after it says Middle States Commission on Higher Education has reaffirmed on accelerated basis accreditation of Strayer University for a full ten-year period, through 2017. Separately, Citigroup upgrades to hold.

Ryland Group (RYL) sees $1.25-$1.35 second-quarter loss per share due to the continued deterioration in the housing market. It expects to take additional charges of about $145-$155 million related to inventory impairments and write-offs.

Alcan (AL) rises on an unconfirmed report in the Times of London that Rio Tinto is planning to offer $34 billion, or $90 a share, to acquire the company. S&P reiterates hold on the stock.

Internet entrepreneur Brad Greenspan and supermarket mogul Ron Burkle met with a committee of Dow Jones & Co.'s (DJ) board yesterday evening to present their proposals for the company, according to people familiar with matter, reports the Wall Stree Journal.

Liz Claiborne (LIZ) sees $0.22-$0.24 second-quarter adjusted EPS, $1.90-$2.00 2007 adjusted EPS; sees $2.35-$2.50 2008 adjusted EPS. The apparel maker sees annual cost savings of $190 million by 2010. It is reviewing possible a divestiture, discontinuation, or licensing for some brands.

Chico's FAS (CHS) posts 7.3% lower June same-store sales and 4.4% higher total sales.

Aeropostale (ARO) posts 0.2% higher same-store sales for the five-week period ended July 8, 5.3% higher total sales for five-week period ended July 7. It sets 3-for-2 stock split.

Vital Images (VTAL) sees $0.02-$0.05 second-quarter loss on revenue of about $15.1-$15.4 million. CIBC World cuts estimates and target.

California Pizza Kitchen (CPKI) posts 5.4% higher second-quarter same-store sales and 16% higher total sales. It sees $0.23 second-quarter EPS, excluding early termination costs.

Boston Communications (BCGI) agrees to be acquired by Megasoft Limited in a $65 million deal. Terms: $3.60 cash per BCGI share.

Newmont Mining (NEM) expects second-quarter results to be similar to the first quarter, benefitting from lower than anticipated cost at Ahafo in Chana, planned reduction in stripping at Batun Hijau in Indonesia. It sees $1.8-$2 billion capex for 2007.

New Brunswick Scientific (NBSC) agrees to be acquired by the Eppendorf Group for $11.50 per share.

Ventana Medical Systems (VMSI) board determines that Roche's $75 per share cash bid for VMSI is inadequate in multiple respects and contrary to best interests of VMSI stockholders.

ITT Corp. and prime contractor Fluor (FLR) announce a U.S. Army Logistics Civil Augmentation Program contract. The award is for 1 year with 9 1-year renewal options, has potential value of $5 billion per year per contractor team.

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