A number of stocks were headed downward Wednesday following earnings reports.
Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) had lost almost 6% by mid-Wednesday trading following its earnings report out Tuesday. The company’s fourth-quarter earnings fell 17% from the year-ago period to $764 million (43 cents per share), falling short of Wall Street expectations. Dell did slightly grow revenues to $16.03 billion, but it said it expects Q1 2012 revenues to drop by 7%. The company also is expected to build a tablet for Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows 8 operating system later this year.
Luxury homebuilder Toll Brothers (NYSE:TOL) was down about 4% as fourth-quarter earnings dipped into the red. The company’s $2.8 million (2 cent per share) loss was the opposite of Street expectations for a 2-cent gain. Toll Brothers had earned $3.4 million in the year-ago period. Revenues of $322 million also fell $37 million short of expectations and were down from $334 million in 2010.
Shares of pizza chain Papa John’s International (NASDAQ:PZZA) were getting hammered to the tune of about 9% despite a slight earnings beat. The company’s $16 million (65 cent per share) profit topped EPS expectations of 62 cents and was up 27% from Q4 2010. However, a 7% revenue increase to $306 million still fell short of analyst expectations, as did a same-store sales increase of 1.7%. The company also maintained 2012 earnings guidance of $2.33 to $2.43 per share, slightly under expectations for $2.44.
Restaurant chain Cheesecake Factory (NASDAQ:CAKE) also was down, losing almost 7% after edging out earnings expectations in its Tuesday report. Profits of $29.4 million (53 cents per share) beat out Street EPS expectations by a penny and were well better than 2010’s 36 cents per share. Revenues also spiked almost 15% to $478 million. However, EPS forecasts for the Q1 2012 and the full fiscal year of 34-36 cents and $1.80-$1.90 were both below estimates for 45 cents and $2.12, respectively.
— Kyle Woodley, InvestorPlace.com Assistant Editor