SAN FRANCISCO – Among the companies whose shares are expected to see active trade in Monday's session are Noven Pharmaceuticals Inc., Walt Disney Co. and Clear Channel Communications Inc.
After Friday's closing bell, Walt Disney Co. (DIS) said it has asked Chairman George Mitchell to postpone his planned retirement and remain in his post through December 2006 to promote an orderly succession. The company also raised its annual dividend to 27 cents a share from 24 cents — an increase of 12.5%.
American Airlines, a unit of AMR Corp. (AMR) , reported that traffic in November rose 6.6% from a year ago to 10.83 billion revenue passenger miles. Load factor, or the percentage of a plane filled with passengers, increased 4.2 percentage points to 77.6%, while net capacity rose 0.8% to 13.95 billion available seat miles. AMR's American Eagle Airline unit also reported that traffic in November rose 26% from a year ago to 697.9 million revenue passenger miles.
AIM Investments, a Houston-based unit of Amvescap PLC (AVZ) , said it cut about 100 jobs earlier this week. A spokesman said no analysts or portfolio managers lost jobs.
Alliance One International Inc. (AOI) said it will close its two production facilities in Spain at the end of the 2006 processing season. The closures, which will affect 200 employees, are subject to the approval of the Spanish government. The Morrisville, N.C.-based tobacco company said it expects total one-time closure costs of $12 million to $14 million.
Atwood Oceanics Inc. (ATW) reported fiscal fourth-quarter net earnings of $7.02 million, or 45 cents a share, vs. $3.34 million, or 24 cents a share, during the same period a year ago. The Houston-based international drilling contractor posted revenue of $46.1 million compared with $42.9 million last year. Atwood said it received notification from the Internal Revenue Service that a previously reserved $3.3 million U.S. income tax refund has been approved for payment. The tax refund and related interest income increased diluted earnings per share for the quarter by 22 cents a share, the company said.
Copart Inc. (CPRT) said net earnings for the first fiscal quarter were $22.8 million, or 25 cents a share, compared with $22.7 million, or 24 cents a share, during the same period last year. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial had expected the company to report per-share earnings of 27 cents. Copart, a Fairfield, Calif.-based vehicle auctioneer, said quarterly revenue was $119 million - matching analysts' estimates - compared with $104.1 million last year.
Clear Channel Communications Inc. (CCU) outlined spinoff details for its entertainment division, CCE Spinco Inc., declaring that it would distribute shares to the public by means of a dividend on or about Dec. 21.
El Paso Corp. (EP) estimates the total cost of repairs related to Hurricane Katrina at $270 million, according to a company filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission late Friday. The Houston-based energy company said it was notified by its insurance carrier in November that the loss limits for Hurricane Katrina had been exceeded, resulting in reduced payments on its claims.
The head of Fairmont Hotels & Resorts (FHR) said its board would resist a bid by affiliates of financier Carl Icahn to gain a controlling stake in the high-end hotelier.
JDS Uniphase Corp. (JDSU) said Richard Liebhaber and Casimir Skrzypczak were re-elected to serve on the board for a three-year term at the annual shareholders meeting. Shareholders also approved a proposal to authorize the board to effect a reverse stock split in the range of 1-for-8 to 1-for-10. The split can be implemented any time before Dec. 1, 2006, after which the authorization expires.
An FDA advisory panel to recommend that Noven Pharmaceuticals Inc.'s (NOVN) patch version of a popular drug to treat attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder in children receive market approval.
Salem Communications Corp. (SALM) affirmed its previous outlook for the fourth quarter. The Camarillo, Calif.-based Christian broadcaster expects to report net quarterly earnings of 11 cents to 13 cents a share. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call are expecting per-share earnings of 13 cents.