Clorox shares surge to one-year high

Oakland-based Clorox reached a one-year high on its shares Friday, bolstered by sturdy earnings results and an upbeat outlook.

Clorox finished at $81.75 on Friday. That was 22 percent higher than the low price for the most recent 52 weeks of $67.03, reached in early May 2012.

On Friday, the maker of its namesake bleach, Glad plastic bags, salad dressing, kitty litter and other household products rose 0.4 percent, or 36 cents.

Clorox on Feb. 4 posted earnings and sales that easily topped analysts' estimates and were well above the year-before results. Clorox's adjusted per-share profits totaled 90 cents and beat Wall Street views of 81 cents.

Armanino Foods posts record profits

Hayward-based Armanino Foods of Distinction posted record profits and sales for the fourth quarter and the year that ended Dec. 31.

Armanino earned $657,000 on sales of $7.1 million for the October-December period.

For 2012, the maker of frozen and refrigerated Italian foods, pastas and sauces earned $2.4 million on sales of $28 million.

Compared to the year-ago quarter, profits soared 35 percent, and sales rose 19 percent. Compared to 2011, profits jumped 21 percent and sales rose 13 percent.

"The severe drought in most of the United States during 2012 has resulted in higher costs for many of our raw material ingredients," said CEO Edmond Pera.

-- Staff

Gap shares jump on buyout speculation

Shares of San Francisco-based Gap jumped the most in more than six months on a report that the largest U.S. retailer of specialty apparel hired an adviser following interest from Japan-based Fast Retailing.

Gap rose 4.8 percent to $32.88 at the close in New York, the biggest one-day gain since Aug. 2.

CNBC cited a report by StreetAccount, a financial news service owned by FactSet Research Systems, which said it had heard speculation about Fast Retailing's interest in Gap.

Gap officials said they wouldn't comment.

-- Bloomberg News