HP, Priceline Shine, Walmart Not So Much

Few Earnings Updates

Analog Devices Inc. (ADI US) gained 3.6 percent to $29.41, after climbing as much as 4.3 percent, the most intraday since Nov. 24. The maker of chips used in cars, consumer electronics and phone networks forecast second-quarter earnings of 48 cents to 51 cents a share, beating analysts’ estimates.

Career Education Corp. (CECO US) gained 8.7 percent to $24.86, after jumping as much as 10 percent, the most intraday since Nov. 5. The for-profit school company reported fourth- quarter profit that topped analysts’ estimates and said it plans to buy back $250 million of shares.

Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. (CLF US) rose 6.4 percent to $50.42 for the second-biggest gain in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index. North America’s largest iron-ore producer posted fourth- quarter profit excluding some items of 76 cents a share, almost double the average analyst estimate.

Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. (GT US) jumped 5.6 percent to $14.68, after rising to $14.79 earlier, the highest intraday price since Jan. 19. The world’s third-largest tiremaker reported fourth-quarter profit excluding some items of 14 cents a share, beating the average analyst estimate of a loss of 9 cents.

Hewlett-Packard Co. (HPQ US) advanced 1.1 percent to $50.66 for the second-biggest gain in the Dow Jones Industrial Average. The world’s largest personal-computer maker increased its full- year earnings forecast after first-quarter profit topped analysts’ estimates.

Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS US) fell the most in the Russell 1000 Index, dropping 7.5 percent to $16.16. The casino company expanding in Macau and Singapore reported fourth-quarter earnings that met analysts’ estimates as the booming Chinese gambling market countered a U.S. slump.

MGM Mirage (MGM US) dropped 5.7 percent to $10.97, after sliding as much as 7.1 percent, the most intraday since Jan. 29. The Las Vegas Strip’s largest casino owner reported a fourth- quarter adjusted loss of 25 cents a share. Analysts on average estimated a loss of 14 cents.

Nvidia Corp. (NVDA US) fell 6.7 percent to $16.64 for the second-biggest retreat in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index. The second-largest maker of graphics chips said first-quarter sales will be unchanged from the fourth quarter as it gets more orders than it can fill.

O’Reilly Automotive Inc. (ORLY US) dropped the most in the S&P 500, sinking 6.8 percent to $38.03. The third-biggest U.S. auto-parts chain forecast 2010 earnings of $2.56 a share at most, missing the average analyst estimate of $2.60.

Priceline.com Inc. (PCLN US) rose the most in the S&P 500, climbing 9.9 percent to $234. The online travel agency forecast first-quarter profit excluding some items of $1.54 a share at least, beating the average analyst estimate of $1.40 in a Bloomberg survey.

Rite Aid Corp. (RAD US) had the biggest rally in the Russell 1000 Index, rising 14 percent to $1.59. The third- biggest U.S. drugstore chain may become an acquisition target given its “meaningful exposure to dense urban markets,” UBS AG wrote in a note to clients.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT US) fell the most in the Dow Jones Industrial Average, slipping 1.5 percent to $53.27. The world’s largest retailer reported fourth-quarter comparable- store sales that trailed its forecast after cutting prices on groceries and consumer electronics.

Source: Business Week