Stocks in the News: Apple, Verizon, Novo Nordisk

The following is a round-up of news likely to affect stock prices today:

Apple (AAPL) handily topped Wall Street's expectations Monday, reporting its best quarter in the company's nearly 30-year history. Apple's revenue of $15.7 billion increased 32% from $11.9 billion a year ago, and profits jumped 50%, spurred by strong sales of its Mac computers and iPhones, which doubled. Meanwhile, the excitement about the Apple tablet continues to build, with print media hoping the new computer will help save its industry. Shares jumped nearly 2% in premarket trade.Also reporting late Monday were:
  • VMWare (VMW), which beat expectations and gave a bullish forecast. Shares soared 17% before the bell.
  • Amgen (AMGN), which reported a somewhat expected disappointment, as its adjusted earnings per share decreased 1% to $1.05 per share, below analyst estimates of $1.16 per share, according to Thomson Reuters.
  • Texas Instruments (TXN) recorded its best level of profitability in two years, beating expectations, as U.S. chipmakers continued to report a strong rebound from the recession. TI also gave an upbeat outlook for 2010. Shares fell nearly 1% ahead of the bell.
Verizon (VZ) just reported a fourth quarter loss of 23 cents a share, but adjusted EPS is 54 cents, inline with estimates. Verizon Q4 operating revenue up 9.9% to $27.1 billion. Verizon sees continued growth in 2010. Shares fell about 1%.

Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) early Tuesday reported its fourth-quarter 2009 net income fell to $2.21 billion, or 79 cents a share. Excluding various items, J&J earned $1.02 a share v. 94 cents. Sales increased 9% to $16.6 billion. Results beat estimates of earnings of 97 cents a share, on revenue of $15.71 billion. J&J also hiked 2010 guidance.

DuPont (DD) on Tuesday said it swung to a profit of $441 million, or 48 cents per share, in the fourth quarter and boosted its 2010 outlook as sales rebounded across global markets. The company increased its full-year 2010 earnings guidance. Shares jumped nearly 1.5% ahead of the bell.

Novartis (NVS) on Tuesday reported a 54% rise in fourth-quarter net profit to $2.32 billion on strong sales and favorable exchange rates, and announced the appointment of Joe Jimenez as its new CEO, replacing Daniel Vasella. Earnings per share rose 53% to $1.01, inline with estimates. Sales rose 28% to $12.93 billion. Shares traded 1.1% higher in premarket.

Novo Nordisk's (NVO) Victoza -- once-daily injection for treating type 2 diabetes -- was approved by the FDA Monday, but the regulatory authority said more safety studies are needed before it can be cleared as a first-line treatment for the disease. The U.S. diabetes market is worth $5.1 billion, which several companies are vying for. Shares rallied nearly 5% before the bell.

Siemens (SI) said Tuesday its fiscal first-quarter profit jumped 23% to 1.48 billion euros as the German industrial conglomerate cut costs, offsetting a decline in revenue amid ongoing weak demand for its products. Revenue fell to 17.4 billion euros. Analysts expected a profit of 950 million euros on sales of 17.9 billion euros. Shares were 2.7% higher.

EMC (EMC) said Tuesday that its earnings jumped over 55% to $426 million, or 20 cents a share, in the fourth quarter. Sales were about flat at $4.1 billion. Adjusted earnings per share were 33 cents, beating estimates of 30 cents. Shares jumped 3.6% before the bell.

McGraw-Hill (MHP) said Tuesday that its fourth-quarter profit rose 45% to $167.3 million, or 53 cents a share, as revenue rose 3.3% to $1.46 billion. Results beat estimates.

Google (GOOG) is in delicate negotiations with the Chinese government to keep its research center in China, an advertising sales team that generates most of the company's revenue in the country and a fledgling mobile phone business.

Adobe Systems (ADBE) said Monday it priced $1.5 billion in new notes, most of which will go to paying down its existing debt. Shares declined about 2.4% in premarket.

More earnings in brief:
  • Travelers' (TLV) fourth-quarter profit rose by 60%. Excluding items, operating profit totaled $2.12 cents per share, handily beating analysts' estimate of $1.49 per share.
  • Delta Air Lines (DAL) posted a $25 million net loss for the quarter, much smaller than a year earlier as revenue rose 1% to $6.8 billion. Excluding special items, Delta lost 27 cents per share, below estimates.
  • Corning (GLW) says its profit almost tripled in the fourth quarter on surging sales of glass for flat-screen televisions.
Yahoo! (YHOO) is reporting after the close.
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