Alcatel-Lucent shares rose 14%. Merrill Lynch raised its rating on the telecom-equipment maker to buy from neutral, saying the stock is oversold after falling 20% from its recent peak. The broker told clients that its upgrade isn’t a call on the quarter, although it does expect a sequential improvement in operating margins through the rest of the year.
AllianceBernstein Holding L.P. shares gained 7.9% after being upgraded to buy from hold at Standard & Poor’s. “We think results will benefit from a lower headcount and cost controls following cuts in the past year, boosting margins,” added analyst Matthew Albrecht in a note to investors. S&P raised its 2009 earnings estimate to $1.34 from 73 cents a share, and increased its price target to $25 from $19.
Altera Corp. shares rose 4.6% after the firm reported a second-quarter profit of $47.4 million, or 16 cents a share, down from $98 million, or 32 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Quarterly revenue was $279.2 million against the prior year’s $360 million. Excluding tax expense of 4 cents a share, the manufacturer of programmable logic devices earned 20 cents a share in the latest period.
ASML Holding N.V. shares gained 4.7%. The Dutch maker of chip-manufacturing equipment swung to a second-quarter loss from a year-earlier profit on 67% lower net sales. The loss was 104 million euros ($145 million), or 0.24 euro a share, compared with net income of 192 million euros, or 0.44, in the year-earlier quarter.
Bemis Co. Inc. shares rose 5.3%. The Neenah, Wis.-based packaging and materials company said it expects to earn 47 cents a share in the second quarter, up from its original estimate of 35 to 43 cents a share. For the year, Bemis said it expects to make $1.68 to $1.75 a share, up from $1.50 to $1.70 a share previously.
Capital One Financial Corp. shares jumped 13% after the company said delinquencies eased slightly in June. The company said the rate of its accounts 30 days or more delinquent dipped modestly to 4.77% in June, down from 4.9% in May.
Gannett Co. shares soared 30%. The largest newspaper publisher in the nation said Wednesday that it swung to a second-quarter profit, although revenue remained under pressure because of the weak economic environment. The publisher of USA Today said its quarterly profit came in at $70.5 million, or 30 cents a share, in the quarter ended June 28. It lost $2.29 billion, or $10.03 a share, in the year-earlier quarter.
Intel Corp. shares rose 8%. The computer-chip maker reported a second-quarter loss of $398 million, or 7 cents a share, compared with a profit of $1.6 billion, or 28 cents, for the year-earlier period. Revenue was $8.02 billion, down from $9.47 billion. Adjusted profit, which excludes a fine imposed by the European Commission, was 18 cents a share. Read more about Intel.
Lubrizol Corp. shares gained 5.7% after an announcement that it expects second-quarter earnings of about $1.92 a share, including a restructuring and impairment charge of about 10 cents a share.
Motorola shares rose 6.6% and Nokia rose 7%, leading telecommunications stocks broadly higher.
Research In Motion Ltd. shares gained 6.3%. The company told shareholders it will sponsor the rock band U2’s 360 Tour in an effort to win over more consumers.
Worthington Industries shares rose 5%. It reported a fourth-quarter loss of $13.7 million, or 17 cents a share, from net income of $53.9 million, or 68 cents a share in the year-ago period. Excluding items, the Columbus, Ohio metal processing company lost 2 cents a share. Sales fell 46% to $471.6 million.
Fifth Street Finance Corp. shares fell 4.5%. The firm, which caters to small and medium-sized companies, estimated second-quarter net investment income at 34 to 36 cents a share, compared with 33 cents in the previous quarter. Separately, the company plans a secondary offering of 6.5 million common shares. The underwriters will have an option on 975,000 more shares if demand for the offering requires.
Lufkin Industries Inc. shares lost 4%. The Texas provider of oilfield-pumping units reported that second-quarter earnings fell 79% on 29% lower sales. Net income was $4.5 million, or 30 cents a share, compared with $21.2 million, or $1.42, in the year-earlier quarter. Adjusted per-share earnings from continuing operations for the latest period were 40 cents. Sales fell to $123.7 million from $174.5 million. To cut costs and improve its competitive position, Lufkin has cut its workforce 16% this year, placed some operations on short workweeks, and eliminated overtime pay.
Yum Brands Inc. shares dropped 5.2%. The operator of fast-food restaurant chains including KFC and Pizza Hut reported a sharply higher second-quarter profit, fueled by lower expenses and international growth. And it affirmed that it expects to earn an adjusted $2.10 a share in 2009. Read more about Yum’s earnings.