Heavy Hitters: AIG and LinkedIn Impress Wall Street, Apple Becomes Biggest Company

Shares of Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI) declined 1.8 percent in late afternoon hours. The video-game company reported better-than-expected earnings of 8 cents per share, but a full-year outlook that disappointed. Bobby Kotick, chief executive officer, explained, “On a GAAP and non-GAAP basis, we delivered strong quarterly and first half net revenues, operating income, and earnings. Year-to-date, we generated a record $434 million in operating cash flow. However, despite this strength in the front half of the year, we remain cautious about the back half.”

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American International Group (NYSE:AIG) shares jumped nearly 4 percent in late afternoon trading. The insurer reported earnings of $1.12 per share for the second quarter, topping estimates of 85 cents per share. AIG also announced a 10-cent per share dividend, along with a $1 billion repurchase plan.

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Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares increased almost 1 percent on Thursday, and continued to attract attention in late afternoon trading. With a strong performance in July, and a decline in Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) shares, Apple is once again the biggest company by market capitalization.

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Shares of LinkedIn (NYSE:LNKD) closed 4.5 percent higher on Thursday, and continued to gain another 6.1 percent in late afternoon hours. The company reported that sales in the second quarter surged 59 percent to $363.7 million, compared to $228.2 million a year earlier. “Accelerated member growth and strong engagement drove record operating and financial results in the second quarter,” said Jeff Weiner, chief executive officer. “We are continuing to invest in driving scale across the LinkedIn platform in order to fully realize our long-term potential.” Shares of Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) also climbed higher.

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