Stocks in the news: Bank of America, Hewlett-Packard, Toll Brothers

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The following post rounds up the companies making headlines today:

Bank of America (BAC) said late Tuesday it raised $13.5 billion through a stock offering to help it meet the government's capital requirements following the recent stress testing. BAC sold 1.25 billion shares at an average price of $10.77. BAC shares last traded at $11.70, up about 4 percent in pre-market action.

Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) reported a 17 percent profit drop, which managed to top estimates. It also said it would cut 6,400 workers, and issued about the same profit forecast. Yet shares fell as CEO Mark Hurd didn't give an optimistic outlook and revenue guidance was on the light side. Shares declined about 4 percent before the bell.

Toll Brothers (TOL) said second-quarter home-building revenue fell 51 percent and its backlog dropped 55 percent. The luxury homebuilder sees signs the real estate market is recovering. Homes sold declined 47 percent from last year, but doubled from the first quarter. Toll Brothers will release final quarterly results on June 3. Shares gained 2.5 percent in pre-market trade.

General Motors Corp. (GM) said Tuesday it doubts it would reach deals with the United Auto Workers union or with the Treasury Department on its debt-for-equity exchange before a May 26 deadline. GM shares were higher ahead of the bell.

Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) is expected to show off its new Internet search engine, Kumo, to the public next week, according to a report late Tuesday in The Wall Street Journal. Of course, the question is whether Kumo can help challenge search market leader Google Inc. (GOOG).

Northrop Grumman Corp. (NOC) raised its quarterly dividend -- fifth year in a row -- by 3 cents to 43 cents a share.

McDonald's Corp. (MCD) was upgraded at Deutsche Bank to Buy from Hold, citing valuation, attractive cash flow and several catalysts that could provide upside to second-half forecasts such as the McCafe business. Shares traded higher before the bell.

Earnings:
  • Target (TGT) said first qurater earnings were 69 per share, 10 cents better than estimates. Revenue edged higher and same store sales fell 3.7 percent, but gross margins improved. Shares gained over 4 percent before the bell.
  • Limited Brands (LTD) is due to report this morning.
  • Deere (DE) fiscal second-quarter earnings fell 38 percent to $472 million, or $1.11 a share, sales plunged 17 percent to $6.8 billion. Analysts expected earnings of $1.07 a share.
  • BJ's Wholesale Club (BJ) said first-quarter net income rose 42 percent. Shares gained 2.8 percent before the bell.
  • Ann Taylor Stores Corp. (ANN) swung to a first-quarter loss, but topped estimates. Shares dropped over 6 percent in pre-market trade.
  • Intuit Inc. (INTU) will report after the close today.
  • Adobe Systems Inc. (ADBE) reported late Tuesday and said its fiscal first-quarter profit and sales fell compared to the same period last year, but it still topped analysts' estimates.
SolarWinds (SWI) makes its debut as the firm priced its 9-million-share initial public offering at $12.50. It's the first venture-capital-backed company in the past nine months to go public, and the sixth overall on a U.S. exchange so far in 2009.

Novartis (NVS) announced it would acquire Ebewe Pharma's generic oncology injectables business for $1.2 billion.
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