MarketWatch.com - Pre-Market Indications

Friday, June 13, 2008

Opening View: Smith & Wesson Earnings Shoot Past Expectations

U.S. stock futures are higher heading into the open, indicative of a potentially positive start to the regular session. In overseas trading, Japanese investors were digesting the country's latest interest-rate news, while commodity-related stocks were taking a hit in Europe. In focus this morning are US Airways' plans to cut capacity, Exxon Mobil's response to the rising cost of gasoline, Smith & Wesson Holding's most recent earnings report, and the latest in the Yahoo!-Microsoft-Google saga.

US Airways (LCC: View sentiment for LCCsentiment, chart, options) is set to open significantly lower this morning after the airline stated it will cut capacity and jobs. More specifically, LCC plans to cut fourth-quarter mainline capacity by 6% to 8% and slash roughly 1,700 jobs – about 800 airport employees, 400 flight attendants, 300 pilots, and 200 staff and management positions. The firm yesterday also announced it will charge $15 for passengers' first checked bag.

The Dallas Morning News reported that Exxon Mobil (XOM: View sentiment for XOMsentiment, chart, options) plans to sell 2,220 of its approximately 12,000 branded service stations in the U.S. due to the rising cost of gasoline and increased competition.

In earnings news, Smith & Wesson Holding (SWHC: View sentiment for SWHCsentiment, chart, options) reported fourth-quarter earnings of $3.3 million, or 8 cents per share, on revenue of $82.6 million. Analysts, on average, were expecting earnings of 5 cents per share on revenue of $77.4 million. In premarket activity, the shares of SWHC are set to open moderately higher than their Thursday close of $5.19.

Finally, after months of speculation, Yahoo! (YHOO: View sentiment for YHOOsentiment, chart, options) and Microsoft (MSFT: View sentiment for MSFTsentiment, chart, options) have reportedly ended merger discussions with no agreement. Instead, YHOO stated it's pursuing an advertising deal with Google ( GOOG: View sentiment for GOOGsentiment, chart, options). As a result of the news, YHOO investors responded with a wave of selling pressure, pushing the shares more than 10% lower before the close on Thursday.



Opening View: Smith & Wesson Earnings Shoot Past Expectations

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