Fast food giant McDonald’s (MCD) announced a 24% jump in first quarter profits for its January through March quarter. The company is one of several international businesses that have benefited from geographic diversity and the weak dollar, in light of US economic challenges. The company, based on Oakbrook, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago, said it earned $946.1 million during the quarter, which amounts to 81 cents per share. This was a sharp jump from last year’s first quarter that saw $762.4 million, or 62 cents per share. It really inspired stock trading, however, by increasing revenues to $5.6 billion. This six percent revenue growth easily topped analyst estimates, which always leads to traders grabbing a stock for their trading portfolio.
Google (GOOG) sent a surge through the stock trading markets by reporting a 30 percent spike in its first quarter profits. This easily topped analyst expectations, and the after hours report ended a day of anxious anticipation that saw the stock’s price dip over $5. The company’s stock has been on a gradual decline over the course of the last year thanks to economic concerns and questions about the company’s advertising business model. Apparently some moderate adjustments to its ad formula were enough to get the job done. The Internet search engine power said its first quarter earnings were $1.31 billion, or $4.12 per share. The incredible earnings really inspired stock investing after hours following the report. As investors quickly added the stock to their trading portfolio or personal stock portfolio, the share price spiked an incredible $76, or 17% in after hours stock trading.
Blue chip technology leader IBM (IBM) excited the US stock trading markets with an exciting first quarter earnings report. First quarter profits jumped a remarkable 26% for the Armonk, New York based company. It also blew away analyst estimates for the quarter, which is always a motivator for trading portfolio additions. For it fiscal first quarter, IBM reported earnings of $2.32 billion, which amounts to $1.65 per share. During its first quarter in 2007, the company netted a profit of $1.84 billion, or $1.21 per share. This was a significant boost for the bell weather in the midst of a generally floundering US economy. IBM has long been a staple of many long-term stock trading strategies based on its consistency and income performance.
Acuity Brands (AYI) is a leading lighting equipment maker based out of New York. The company recently announced a sharp rise in its second quarter profits. Net income for the quarter was $34.1 million, or 82 cents per share. This strong performance led to an immediate stock trading surge as stock investing picked up after the report. What really gave the stock help was that it bested analyst expectations by 14 cents per share. This is an incredibly strong topping of expectations, which always heightens interest in trading portfolio additions. Revenue for the quarter was $482.6 million, significantly more than the $470.2 million analysts predicted.
Houston based Mitchum Industries (MIND), a geophysical equipment maker, announced fourth quarter and annual 2008 record earnings results. The company smashed analyst estimates of 27 cents per share for its fourth quarter by earning 32 cents per share. Net income was $3.3, which smashed last year’s fourth quarter earnings of $730,000 and 7 cents per share. Revenue for the company nearly doubled, going from $11.1 million in the fiscal 2007 fourth quarter, to $20.8 million for fiscal fourth quarter 2008. According to company executives, a 38% rise in its core equipment leasing business was a primary catalyst for the revenue and earnings growth. After hours stock trading showed investors were satisfied with the results. Stock investing drove the company’s shares up nearly 5% after hours on top of a 1.7% rise during the day leading up to the announcement.
Martinsville, Virginia based Hooker Furniture (HOFT), a furniture maker, reported a strong fourth quarter profit for its fiscal quarter. The company reported a $4.6 million profit, or 39 cents per share, for the quarter that ended on February 3. This was a huge improvement for the company, which reported a loss of $18.4 million during last year’s fourth quarter, or $1.52 per share. They did have a shortened, two month quarter last year, related to a shift in their fiscal year.
The Monsanto Company (MON),a multinational agricultural biotechnology corporation, delivered great news to the stock investing community with incredible second quarter growth this year: $3.8 billon. This amazing 45 percent growth in revenues over last year’s effort was driven by domestic and international growth. The Monsanto Company is the world’s leading producer of the herbicide glyphosate, marketed as Roundup. Sales of this herbicide and others were $982 million globally compared to $530 last year. Dramatic increases in revenues ($1,747 million from $1,192 million in 2007) mainly from the US and Brazilian corn seed and traits business also contributed to this record growth. The year-to-date sales were 42 percent higher than sales compared with the same period in fiscal year 2007.
Research in Motion (RIMM), a Blackberry maker, announced a hugely successful fiscal fourth quarter. The company’s quarter ended on March 1. Earning for the quarter were $412.5 million, which equals 72 cents per share. The profit more than doubled from $187.4 million and 33 cents per share during last year’s fourth quarter. Stock trading intensified after hours for the stock, following the announcement. Revenue also jumped incredibly, from $930 million to $1.88 billion. The company indicated it had no concerns of a slowdown that has affected some other technology companies. The 72 cents per share earnings topped analyst estimates by 2 cents. This is always exciting to the stock investing community. Many traders immediately beginning added the stock to their personal stock portfolio.
New York based Paychex (PAYX) met Wall Street estimates by netting 39 cents per share during its fiscal 3rd quarter. Profits were up 13% for the quarter, which matched analyst expectations. The company, known as a payroll processor, is fast turning into a full service human resource specialist. Revenue for its third quarter was $532.2 million, just off the $533.3 million anticipated. While revenue rose 10% from last year’s second quarter, investors were especially excited about the company’s modest 3% cost rise. This helped lead to a 39.5% increase in operating margin. This is a great business signal.
San Francisco based drug store chain Walgreens Company (WAG) announced a 5.2% profit increase during its fiscal second quarter compared with last year’s second quarter. This was above analysts estimates for the company. The company credited much of the growth in profit to better cost control measures and stronger sales at established stores. The company’s profit for the quarter, which ended February 29, was $686 million. This amounts to 69 cents per share in earnings, which definitely excited stock trading for the company as investors drove the shares up about 5% through trading portfolio additions, following the better than expected results.