Stocks in the news: Bank of America, General Electric, Citigroup, CIT

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The following post rounds up the companies making headlines today:

Bank of America (BAC) reported a big second-quarter profit even as losses from failed loans continued to rise. The bank's earnings after payment of preferred dividends fell to $2.42 billion, or 33 cents per share, compared with a profit of $3.22 billion, or 72 cents per share, in the year ago period, but beat estimates of 28 cents per share. It missed on the top line though.

General Electric Co. (GE) reported that second quarter net income tumbled a less-than-expected 49 percent as its finance unit continued to show distress and big industrial units weakened due to the recession. GE beat earnings forecast but missed on the op line. It posted net income of $2.6 billion, or 24 cents per share, after paying preferred dividends and a revenue decline of 17 percent to $39.1 billion. Analysts had expected GE to earn 23 cents per share on revenue of $42.16 billion. GE shares plunged nearly 5 percent an hour into the trading session.
CIT Group (CIT) is continuing to try to secure billions in much-needed financing from lenders as it desperately tries to stay out of bankruptcy court after the U.S. government declined to extend emergency aid to the troubled commercial lender. CIT shares soared 39 percent an hour after the open probably as speculation mounted a buyer will be found.

Citigroup Inc. (C) reported a $4.3 billion, or 49 cents a share, second-quarter profit thanks to gains on its Smith Barney deal, though its primary banking businesses continue to suffer from rising credit losses. Quarterly revenue rose 71 percent to $30.0 billion, almost entirely attributed to the Smith Barney gain as well as net write-ups.

International Business Machines Corp (IBM) reported quarterly results that beat estimates Thursday after the close. It sharply raised its full-year earnings forecast as it benefits from focusing more on higher-margin businesses in software and services. Shares gained 3 percent about an hour after the open.

Google Inc. (GOOG) also reported quarterly profit that beat Wall Street expectations, but the weak economy and slump in advertising spending took a toll on revenue growth, which rose only 3 percent in the quarter, and the price of its search ads. Shares declined over 2.5 percent after the open.

Mattel Inc. (MAT) reported that sales sank in the second quarter, but profit rose 82 percent, beating analyst expectations, as the company cut down on expenses. Shares gained about 5 percent around 10:30 a.m.
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