2011 March

Globalstar, Inc. Soars on FCC News

Globalstar, Inc (NASDAQ:GSAT) saw its shares soar this morning up over 30% heading into midday trading, with a rise of over $.30 to $1.35 and nearly four times its daily volume traded. This rise is due in large part to the FCC News Globalstar, Inc received today.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced that Globalstar, Inc. will be allowed to operate its second-generation satellites within the boundaries of the United States.  This authority will become effective once Globalstar Inc, completes registration of the new satellites in France.

Globalstar, Inc. has already launched six satellites for the second generation constellation and recently received six new satellites for an upcoming May launch date. After the May launch, Globalstar, Inc. is expecting two more launches each containing six satellites. These additional satellites within the current Constellation will provide improved coverage throughout the United States for Globalstar, Inc. customers.

About Globalstar, Inc.
Globalstar, Inc. provides mobile voice and data communications services through satellite in the United States and Canada. It provides duplex services comprising mobile voice and data satellite communications, satellite data modem, and fixed voice and data satellite communications services; and simplex services, including personal, asset tracking, and remote monitoring.

Celera Corp Shares Soar on Buyout

Celera Corporation (NASDAQ:CRA) saw shares soar this morning up over 29% rising $1.86 with a whopping 26 million shares traded heading into midday trading hours. This is a monumental increase from their daily average trading volume of 400,000 shares.

Quest Diagnostics Inc. ( NYSE:DGX) a Madison, New Jersey based medical laboratory operator announced that it would purchase all of Celera Corps outstanding shares for $8 per share. The $671 million deal price also includes Celera’s cash and short term investments. The $8 purchase price is a 28% premium from where shares of Celera Corp closed on Thursday March 17, 2011.

With this acquisition Quest Diagnostics Inc. gains it access to proprietary genetic testing and a research and development pipeline focusing on cardiovascular disease and cancer. The acquisition also come on the heels of Celera Corp’s announcement of a Q4 net income drop of 31%. As product licensing and revenue declined the companies earnings did as well falling to $2.5 million down from the $3.6 in Q4 of 2009.

About Celera Corporation
Celera Corporation, an Alameda, California based company, offers personalized disease management through a combination of products and services primarily in the United States.

Nike Reports Q3 Results, Shares Fall

When the opening bell rang this morning Nike, Inc (NYSE:NKE) shares opened down nearly 9% as shares have fallen $7.90 on nearly 10 million shares traded this morning. This amount of volume is four times the amount of average daily volume.

This sharp decline comes as Nike, Inc reported Q3 financial results that did not meet expectations. While net income was up 5% overall to $523 million from last years Q3 results of $497 million. Its revenue rose 7% to $5.08 billion as sales in most markets rose. The financial forecast was for a revenue goal $5.17 Billion.

Investors confidence is waning as share prices have shown this morning. Nike executives did not quell fears stating that higher material, production and distribution cost will continue to hurt profitability into 2012. Nike is planning to increase prices across the board to compensate for the higher production cost. However, executives feel that the financial benefits from price increases will not be seen until Fiscal year

This marks the first time in eight years that Nike’s quarterly earnings have fallen below analyst average forecast.

About Nike, Inc
Nike is a Beaverton, Oregon based athletic shoe and apparel company. They design, develop, and markets footwear, apparel, equipment, and accessory products for men, women, and children worldwide.

G7 to Weaken the Yen

The world’s seven largest industrialized countries, or G7 as they are known, announced late Thursday that they would intervene in the currency markets in order to lower the value of the Yen (Japanese currency). Since the earthquake and tsunami struck Japan a week ago their currency has soared to the highest levels since World War II.

This unprecedented move is meant to help the Japan economy, as a higher yen will weaken their exports because their goods would cost more overseas. The main market index in Japan, the Nikkei, closed up 2.7% after the announcement.

The New York Federal Reserve Bank also confirmed that they too intervened in the currency markets. This is the first time the U.S. government has openly stepped into the currency markets since 2000 when the government sold dollars and bought euros to help bolster the European currency. No details were given as to the extent of the intervention by the New York Federal Reserve.

The USD/JPY pairing is currently trading at 81.0450, an increase of 2.3102%. The pairing was as low as 76.5700 following the earthquake disaster that struck Japan.

United Community Banks Selling 22.5% Stake

United Community Banks Inc. (NASDAQ:UCBI) have seen shares rise this morning over 25%. Shares have climbed more than $.40 to over $1.90 on more than 2.8 million shares traded. This is three times the normal daily volume of .9 million shares. This large increase in UCBI’s shares is due to announcement of UCBI’s intent to sell a stake of the company.

United Community Banks Inc is looking to sell a one quarter stake in the company(approx 22.5%) for $380 million while offloading $435 million in bad assets to help shore up the balance sheet. UCBI will sell a combination of both common and preferred shares to a group of institutional investors and a partner of Corsair Capital. Such a large stake in the company will give the buying group a seat on the board.

If Corsair Capital and its group of institutional investors are able to purchase this stake before UCBI fails they will be able to avoid rules governing private equity firms buying failed banks that U.S. Bank Regulators have on place. This marks another occasion where private equity firms like Corsair Capital step in to bail out financial institution when traditional funding sources dried up.

About United Community Banks, Inc.
United Community Banks operates as the bank holding company for United Community Bank that provides retail and corporate banking services. Its deposit product line includes interest-bearing and non interest bearing deposits, NOW accounts, money market accounts, checking accounts, savings deposits, time deposits, and brokered deposits.

Flotek Announces 2010 Fiscal Results

Flotek Industries, Inc (NYSE:FTK) is showing strong gains this morning with common shares soaring up over 25% and is currently trading at $6.60. As the midday trading hours approach, FTK has already seen 1.7 million shares traded, eclipsing the average daily volume of 1.6 million shares over the last few months.

This large increase is due in large part to the release of 2010 financial results for Flotek Industries, Inc. FTK reported 2010 revenue increased from $112.6 million in 2009 to $147 million in 2010 or a 30% increase. Revenue increased across the company’s segments due to improved pricing, industry demand, and increased drilling activity.

One of the main reasons for these increases in revenue is the fact that Flotek has refocused the company’s international marketing efforts. Since the beginning of 2010, Flotek has completed multiple international jobs including jobs in Turkey, Poland, and the Paris Basin.

About Flotek Industries, Inc.
The company supplies drilling and production related products and services to the energy and mining industries in the United States and internationally. It operates in three segments: Chemicals and Logistics, Drilling Products, and Artificial Lift.

Around the Market for Mar. 16

The markets are getting hammered today as weak U.S. economic news and worries about the nuclear crisis in Japan affects send investors looking for the emergency exits. The housing industry took a hit today with a 22.5 percent decrease from last month. You can read more about that here.

Wholesale prices also rose last month by the most in two years. They rose because of higher energy prices and the biggest increase in food prices in over three decades. Some companies affected by the higher food prices were Starbucks Corp. and McDonald’s Corp. Both of these companies are currently trading down over 1.5 percent.

The ongoing nuclear crisis in Japan has also affected how other countries governments are looking at nuclear energy. China has suspended the approval of new nuclear plants and lawmakers in France are questioning their top energy executives about the safety of their reactors.

Let’s take a look at what kind of losses the markets are taking in midday trading. The Dow is down 200 points, the Nasdaq is down 41 points, and the S&P is down 21 points. Oil and Gold are both up, with each one seeing gains of just under a percent.

Universal Display Corp. Q4 and 2010 Results

Upon release of 2010 full year and Q4 fiscal results shares of Universal Display Corporation(NASDAQ:PANL) soared up over 14% and up $5.50 per share heading into the lunch hour with over 1.6 million shares traded. This is four times the average amount of daily volume PANL is accustomed to seeing.

Revenues from Q4 were nearly $10.8 Million which was more than double the 2009 Q4 results of $4.8 Million. The main increase in revenue was due in large part to increases in both commercial chemical sales and developmental revenue. Universal Display Corporation reported an operating loss of $210,276 in Q4 which is a $4 million dollar improvement over where the company sat at the end of Q4 2009.

Sidney D. Rosenblatt, Executive Vice President and CFO of Universal Display, was quoted as saying “With revenues for the year almost doubling, fiscal 2010 may well be regarded as the year PHOLED technology officially migrated out of the laboratory and into the lives of millions of consumers. The appetite for bright, beautiful and more energy efficient and environmentally friendly displays is creating strong demand for the use of OLEDs in a variety of applications. In 2011, manufacturers are expected to add capacity, enabling this technology to be enjoyed more widely by consumers everywhere. To further leverage our extensive intellectual property assets and create value for our shareholders, we are actively pursuing opportunities in the small and large format display markets, as well as the general lighting market where our technology can demonstrably improve OLED performance and efficiency.”

A conference was scheduled in conjunction with this press release and will be held Tuesday March 29, 2011 you can access the call via Universal Display’s event portion of their website.

Lucas Energy, Inc. Acquires Interest in Well

Lucas Energy, Inc. (AMEX:LEI) saw shares rise this morning up over $.50 at one point. This morning’s share increase of over 15% comes on the news that LEI has acquired an interest in the ARCO Fee A-908 No.1 well. The well is back in production after being shutdown during LEI’s acquisition of it.

In a partial month of production in January the well produced 5,791 thousand cubic feet of natural gas and 371 barrels of condensate. This marks a new venture for the Houston based independent oil and gas company. William A. Sawyer, President and CEO of Lucas Energy, Inc, stated “Lucas energy is expanding its area of interest to include other leases along the same trend it is currently developing, this is Lucas Energy’s first gas well.”

Lucas Energy, Inc has another well located in the same area of the Austin Chalk Formation.  This second well has yet to be evaluated however Lucas Energy Inc does have a 50% working interest after payout in the two wells.

About Lucas Energy, Inc.

The company acquires low producing or abandoned oil wells with underlying potential. Lucas Energy currently has acreage in the fast growing Eagle Ford Trend in Central Texas. Lucas Energy’s business plan is to acquire wells at low cost, improve the production in the wells, and develop upside potential with joint venture partners.

Housing Industry Takes Another Hit

New home construction saw a 22.5 percent decline in February from January. This decline came as a surprise to investors following a surge in apartment construction in January. This is just the latest evidence that the housing industry is still many years away from recovery. Only 479,000 were being built in February compared to the 600,000 in January according to the Commerce Department. This is the lowest level since April 2009 and the second-lowest in over a 50 years.

The main area of home construction, which is single-family homes, were down 11.8 percent in February. Construction of apartments and condominiums dropped 47%, taking out much of the gains in January. Building permits also fell 8.1 percent last month to the lowest levels since 1960.

Here’s a breakdown of the drop in home construction across the country.

Midwest – 48.6%
Northeast – 37.5%
West – 28%
South- 6.3%

The National Association of Home Builders said Tuesday that they have rated March a 17 on its index of industry sentiment. This is up from 16, where it has been for the past 5 months, but isn’t really good news though since any reading below 50 indicates negative sentiment about the housing industry’s future. The last time the index was above 50 was April 2006.

Williams-Sonoma Inc. Reports 28% Increase in Q4 Income

Williams-Sonoma Inc. (NYSE:WSM) common shares rose over 10% heading into the midday trading hours. WSM shares have climbed over $3.50 per share on nearly 3 million shares traded this morning. These solid earnings are due in large part to the release of Williams-Sonoma Inc’s Q4 earnings press release.

During the fourth quarter last year WSM earned $113.4 million or $1.05 per share up from $88.4 or $.81 a share from Q4 of 2009.  While besting Wallstreet revenue estimates by nearly 10% as online sales increased 27%. Williams-Sonoma also showed strong revenue increase across the board at retail outlets open at least a year(11%), including Pottery Barn stores(8.9%) and Pottery Barn Kids(4.6%).

Williams-Sonoma annual revenue rose 13% to $3.5 billion in 2010 up from $3.1 billion in 2009. Analysts predict another strong year for the San Francisco based company including full year earnings of $2.11 per share and a revenue of nearly $3.65 billion.

About Williams-Sonoma
The company is a San Francisco based home products company that features several subsidiary brands including Pottery Barn, Pottery Barn Kids, West Elm, and its own name sake stores

Impax Laboratories Inc. Showing Strong Gains Today

Impax Laboratories Inc (NASDAQ:IPXL) are showing a surge of over 10%  today rising over $2.80 to nearly $25 per share on over 3.5 million share traded by the midday trading hour. This is 5 times the average daily volume for IPXL shares.

This surge come on the news that Impax Laboratories Inc. proposed Parkinson’s drug (Candidate IPX066) met key treatment goals when compared to carbipoda-levopoda. IPX066 is an extended release version of its counterpart the immediate release carbipoda-levopoda. The IPX066 study focused on patients with varying degrees of fluctuations in motor function.

Impax Laboratories Inc. is also expected to discuss Advance-PD Phase-III study for in the treatment of Advanced Parkinson’s Disease. A Conference call was scheduled for this morning Tuesday March, 15 2011 at 9:00 AM Eastern to discuss these future studies.

About Impax Laboratories Inc.
The company operates in two divisions Global Pharmaceuticals and Impax Pharmaceuticals.  The Global Pharmaceuticals division develops, manufactures, and sells, and distributes generic pharmaceutical products to a variety of retail drug chains. The Imapx Pharmaceuticals division develops drugs that address the central nervous system.

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