US SMALL/MIDCAPS-Stocks near flat; results give mixed picture

By Caroline Valetkevitch

NEW YORK, Oct 26 (BestGrowthStock) – Mid- and small-capitalization
stocks were nearly flat on Tuesday, with stronger-than-expected
earnings from companies including Rent-A-Center Inc (RCII.O: )
offsetting weaker results and forecasts.

Rent-A-Center Inc jumped 10.5 percent to $25.71 after it
posted quarterly results late Monday and forecast 2011 earnings
above market expectations. For details see [ID:nSGE69O0JZ]

Shares of Aaron’s Inc (AAN.N: ) rose 9.4 percent to $19.33,
also after reporting results.

Shares of Unisys Corp (UIS.N: ), however, declined 22.6
percent to $24.16 as it reported lower quarterly results.

Also, Capella Education Co (CPLA.O: ) shares fell 18.2
percent to $55.11 after it forecast slowing revenue and student
enrollment growth for the rest of the year. For details, see
[ID:SGE69O0JJ]

“I don’t think we’re at the end of the cycle (of a strong
growth in earnings) at all. We’re seeing decent earnings from a
recovery basis…if anything I think earnings are going to
exceed expectations over the next few months so I’m positive
(on mid-caps) relative to bonds or cash,” said Don Wordell,
portfolio manager of RidgeWorth MidCap Value Fund in Orlando,
Florida.

The S&P MidCap 400 index (.MID: ) rose 0.06 percent while the
S&P SmallCap 600 index (.SML: ) slipped 0.1 percent. In
comparison, the benchmark S&P 500 (.SPX: ) dipped 0.2 percent.

Earnings for S&P 500 companies are expected to rise 28.7
percent in the third quarter from a year ago, up from a
forecast of 23.8 percent on Oct 1, according to Thomson Reuters
data.

With results now in from 39 percent of S&P 500 companies,
some 82 percent are beating estimates. That compares with a
long-term average of 62 percent for an entire quarter of
earnings.
(Reporting by Caroline Valetkevitch; Editing by Theodore
d’Afflisio)

US SMALL/MIDCAPS-Stocks near flat; results give mixed picture