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Markets & Stocks
Hot stocks: Taking a lick
April 20, 2001: 4:39 p.m. ET

M&F Worldwide falters on deal announcement but VISX soars
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NEW YORK (CNNfn) - Licorice producer M&F Worldwide lost a third of its market value Friday after saying it bought a camera and lenses firm for an undisclosed sum. But shares of VISX, which makes lasers for eye surgery, rose 14 percent after receiving a $1.9 billion buyout offer from a well-known takeover specialist.

Friday's losers

M&F Worldwide (MFW: down $1.79 to $3.30, Research, Estimates). The producer of licorice flavors said it purchased all 7.3 million shares of camera and lenses firm Panavision.

Alpharma (ALO: down $6.95 to $23.00, Research, Estimates). The pharmaceutical products maker, which makes some drugs for animals, blamed weakness in the poultry and livestock markets for an expected profit shortfall this quarter and year. At least five brokerage downgrades followed.

Silicon Graphics (SGI: down $0.99 to $3.01, Research, Estimates). The maker of computer servers and workstations reported a wider-than-expected loss in the fiscal third quarter.

Merck (MRK: down $4.66 to $73.61, Research, Estimates). The drugmaker fell after Merrill Lynch downgraded the stock. Merck posted improved first-quarter profit on strong sales, meeting Wall Street expectations.

Nortel Networks (NT: down $0.85 to $16.95, Research, Estimates). The telecom equipment maker late Thursday reported a first-quarter loss in line with lowered forecasts and said it will cut 5,000 more jobs than originally planned.

Sun Microsystems (SUNW: down $1.00 to $19.71, Research, Estimates). The workstation developer reported fiscal third-quarter earnings late Thursday in line with analysts' estimates, and warned that its current quarter will come up a little short of forecasts.

Xilinx (XLNX: down $1.56 to $48.44, Research, Estimates). The maker of programmable integrated circuits fell short of earnings estimates of 22 cents per share, recording fiscal fourth-quarter net income of 19 cents per share. Revenue rose 33 percent to $407 million.

Honeywell International (HON: down $0.38 to $47.22, Research, Estimates). The diversified manufacturer posted a drop in first-quarter income Friday that was much more severe than expected, and announced it would cut about 5 percent of its staff worldwide.

AT&T (T: down $0.29 to $22.92, Research, Estimates). The long-distance telephone and cable TV company said Friday that it will take a charge of up to $780 million due to financial problems at Excite-At-Home Corp., of which AT&T owns about 23 percent.

Commerce One (CMRC: down $3.31 to $10.40, Research, Estimates). The software company announced late Thursday that it met revised results estimates and just missed revenue expectations. The company posted a loss of 11 cents per share on revenue of $170.3 million. Before the company warned April 4, the consensus estimate had been for a loss of 6 cents per share.

Ericsson (ERICY: down $1.17 to $5.91, Research, Estimates). The Swedish cell phone maker posted a first-quarter pretax loss of $488 million Friday, warned about the second quarter, and set plans to cut 10,000 jobs.

Transmeta (TMTA: down $5.90 to $18.70, Research, Estimates). The mobile chipmaker reported after the bell Thursday that its pro forma first-quarter loss narrowed to 10 cents a share from 56 cents a share a year earlier. Analysts had forecast the company would report a loss of 11 cents per share.

Nokia (NOK: down $0.15 to $31.45, Research, Estimates). The world's biggest cell phone maker reported a better-than-expected first-quarter pretax profit Friday.

Friday's winners

VISX (EYE: up $2.92 to $23.75, Research, Estimates). The company, a maker of lasers that correct vision problems, received a $1.9 billion buyout offer from Carl Icahn, a wealthy investor known for his takeover bids.

Mainspring (MSPR: up $0.72 to $3.92, Research, Estimates). The Internet consulting firm said it agreed to be bought by IBM in an $80 million deal.

Brocade Communications Systems (BRCD: up $5.44 to $36.78, Research, Estimates). The software maker rose in spite of a warning that profit for the second quarter ending this month will be half of what Wall Street expects. Earnings per share will be 5 cents-to-6 cents, down from the 11-cent consensus estimate of analysts surveyed by First Call. The company also sees second-quarter revenue down 30 percent from the first quarter.

Microsoft (MSFT: up $0.96 to $69.00, Research, Estimates). The software company surprised Wall Street late Thursday with earnings that topped forecasts and better-than-expected sales for its fiscal third quarter. But the software maker warned of slightly lower-than-forecast earnings for the fourth quarter and its next fiscal year.

eBay (EBAY: up $0.66 to $50.65, Research, Estimates). The online auctioneer said first-quarter earnings topped estimates, was comfortable with estimates for the next two quarters, and added that revenue will exceed forecasts for the second quarter.

Ariba (ARBA: up $0.73 to $7.76, Research, Estimates). The software maker reported a second-quarter loss Friday that was sharply wider than a year earlier but in line with Wall Street forecasts.

Boeing (BA: up $1.07 to $61.70, Research, Estimates). The world's largest aircraft maker easily beat Wall Street estimates, posting a big jump in sales compared with a year earlier, when a strike hurt its results.

PMC-Sierra (PMCS: up $3.41 to $44.81, Research, Estimates). The communications chipmaker reported first-quarter pro forma net income of 2 cents per share, down 84 percent from the same period a year earlier, but in line with First Call's target number.

Inktomi (INKT: up $1.14 to $8.15, Research, Estimates). The Internet search company reported a fiscal second-quarter loss of 22 cents per share, slightly better than revised estimates by both the company and analysts of a loss of 25 cents per share.

Emulex (EMLX: up $1.62 to $32.49, Research, Estimates). The computer network company met consensus estimates with third-quarter pro forma income of 13 cents per share. The company said it expects to earn 10 cents per share in the fourth quarter and 63 cents per share for the year, both a penny a share below First Call consensus estimates.

-- from staff and wire reports graphic





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