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An Acme Packet (NASDAQ:APKT) spokesperson commented that, “We are disappointed with our preliminary results for the second quarter. Our top line results were principally impacted by continued weakness in the North American service provider market. We are completing a full review of our operations and will provide a further update on July 26th.” Shares closed down 14.46 percent at $15.74, having closed between $17.18 and $72.92 for the past 52 weeks.
Informatica Corp. (NASDAQ:INFA) shares traded far lower Friday following the forecast of a weak second quarter. INFA posted preliminary second quarter earnings between 27 and 28 cents, missing consensus of 37 cents, on preliminary revenue between $188 million and $190 million, also far missing the consensus of $217.15 million. The firm projected second quarter license revenues of $70 million to $72 million and service revenues between $117 million and $119 million. Separately, Informatica said that Paul Hoffman, executive VP and president of its Worldwide Field Operations, will retire from his full-time position by the end of the current year. In addition, the firm reports that $100 million will be added to its stock buyback plan, making approximately $147 million available for common stock repurchases. In reaction to all this, Informatica shares were downgraded to Hold from Buy at Jefferies along with Deutsche Bank and to Underperform from Buy at Bofa/Merrill. Stifel Nicolaus was “somewhat skeptical” about the INFA’s second half of 2012 guidance but keeps its Buy, and slashed its target on Informatica from $56 to $45. Oppenheimer pronounced that the firm retains opportunities in the big data space, but cut its price target on the stock to $46 from $57. Shares closed down 27.62 percent on the day at $31.39, having traded in a 52-week range of $34.15 to $60.92.
Walter Energy (NYSE:WLT) shares fell sharply after Standard & Poor’s on Thursday night lowered its outlook on the company to Negative from Stable. The negative outlook reflects S&P’s being convinced that Walter’s EBITDA will be lower than previously forecast this year. In particular, S&P lowered its 2012 EBITDA projection for Walter to a range of $700 million to $800 million from $800 million to $900 million, primarily because the analyst thinks that metallurgical coal prices will stay near their current weak levels over the near-term. On the upside, S&P believes that prices for met coal will bounce back over the medium to longer term. Walter’s BB- credit was kept, implying that it has “significant” financial risk, but S&P warned that the rating could be cut if its financial outlook deteriorates further. On what at first blush seems counterintuitive, a strike settlement between mining company BHP Billiton (NYSE:BHP) and a number of labor unions, could be a negative for Walter, as the work stoppage was lowering production at BHP, reducing supply of met coal and preventing prices from falling even further. Shares closed down 9.94 percent on the day at $41.12, having been traded between $42.20 and $132.38, for the past 52 weeks.
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