Notable Earnings: Blackstone (BX), UnitedHealth Group (UNH), Philip Morris (PM), Citigroup (C), eBay Inc. (EBAY)

The Blackstone Group L.P. (BX) shares are down 2.44% to $40.31 in pre-market trading Thursday after the company reported its second quarter earnings results.

The world’s biggest manager of alternative assets posted earnings of $0.43 per share on revenues of $1.20 billion, down 46.3% from $2.23 billion a year ago. Analysts were expecting EPS of $0.44 on revenues of $1.15 billion. Net income fell to $508.4 million, or $0.43 a share, from $1.33 billion, or $1.15 a share, a year earlier.

Stephen A. Schwarzman, Chairman and CEO of Blackstone, stated, “We produced solid results for our investors in the second quarter with strong realization activity despite challenging market conditions. While the weak global equity markets adversely impacted some of our holdings, underlying portfolio company fundamentals are trending significantly better than the overall economy and point towards a fertile field for future value growth and realizations. At the same time we reported $94 billion in gross capital inflows over the past twelve months, a record for the firm and our industry, propelling our Total Assets Under Management to another record of $333 billion, up 19% year-over-year.”

The $25.10 billion market cap firm reported $4.3 billion in cash vs. $0 in debt in its most recent quarter.

UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (UNH) reported second quarter EPS of $1.64 before the opening bell Thursday, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.58. Revenues increased 11.3% from $32.57 billion last year to $36.26 billion. Analysts expected revenues of $35.69 billion.

The nation’s largest health insurer said that it now expects full-year 2015 revenues of $154 billion, as compared to analysts’ expectations of $144.20 billion. The management also gave its bottom line range of $6.25 to $6.35 per share, against projections of $6.26 per share.

UnitedHealth said the guidance reflects its deal to buy Catamaran Corp. (CTRX) and its strong business performance.

UNH is currently up $0.74 to $126.60 on 14K shares.

Shares of Philip Morris International, Inc. (PM) gained $1.38 to $84.05 after the company released its earnings results on Thursday. The seller of Marlboro and other cigarette brands reported Q2/15 EPS of $1.21 per share vs. $1.13 consensus on $6.86 billion in revenue (also surpassing Street forecasts for $6.72 billion), down 12.0% from a year ago.

“Our second-quarter results were very solid, further reinforcing our great start to the year,” said in a press release André Calantzopoulos, Chief Executive Officer of Philip Morris International.”Our organic volume trends, market share growth and robust pricing, exemplified by our flagship brand Marlboro, are driving excellent operational performance within an improving macroeconomic environment for our business.”

“Based on this strong business momentum, we now anticipate we will be towards the upper end of our projected full-year, constant currency adjusted diluted EPS growth rate range of 9% to 11%.”

For full fiscal year 2015, Philip Morris provided EPS guidance of $4.32 to $4.42 versus consensus of $4.40 per share.

Citigroup Inc. (C) rallied $1.44 to $57.90 in pre-market trading after it reported fiscal results for the second quarter.

In its quarterly report, the New York-based banking giant said it earned $1.45 per share, well above the $1.35 per share analysts were expecting. Revenue rose 0.2% to $19.47 billion, above views for $19.17 billion. Net income, a measure of earnings that reflects realized and unrealized gains, increased to $4.8 billion, or $1.51 per share (diluted) in Q2/15, compared to $181 million, or $0.03 per share (diluted), on revenues of $19.4 billion from e year earlier.

Michael Corbat, Chief Executive Officer of Citigroup, commented, “Our results for the quarter show very balanced performance across our business lines.”

Shares of eBay Inc. (EBAY) climbed $2.06 to $65.50 after the company reported second-quarter earnings of $4.38 billion, or $0.76 per share. Analysts had been modeling $4.49 billion and $0.72 per share.

EBay said it expects full-year 2015 earnings in the range of $1.72 to $1.77 per share. Separately, the e-commerce company is near a deal to sell its enterprise business to a private equity consortium for about $900 million, according to The Wall Street Journal.

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