March 28, 2013 / 12:37 PM / 4 years ago

MARKET PULSE-BlackBerry, Accenture, Repros Therapeutics, Red Hat, Five Below

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March 28 (Reuters) - Some U.S. stocks to watch on Thursday:

FUTURES INCH HIGHER, SET TO CLOSE OUT STRONG QUARTER

U.S. stock index futures edged up on Thursday and were set to close out a strong quarter, as investors shifted focus from Cyprus to data about the U.S. economy, which has been showing slow, steady improvement.

S&P 500 futures added 1.4 points and were in line with fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures gained 27 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures added 5 points.

** BLACKBERRY , Wednesday close $14.57, up 0.6 pct premarket

The smartphone maker reported a surprise quarterly profit on Thursday, but its subscriber base fell slightly more than expected and revenues remained far below year-ago levels, and its shares fell.

BlackBerry, based in Waterloo, Ontario-based, said it sold about 1 million of the new Z10 device in the quarter, and shipped roughly 6 million smartphones in the quarter ended March 2.

** REPROS THERAPEUTICS INC, Wednesday close $9.13, up 76 percent premarket

The company said its experimental drug to treat low levels of testosterone met the main goals of a key study, succeeding in bringing patients’ testosterone levels to a normal range.

** ACCENTURE PLC, Wednesday close $74.88, down 2 percent premarket

Accenture Plc beat analysts’ second-quarter profit estimates on strong growth in its outsourcing business, but said full-year revenue growth would be below the mid point of its forecast range of 5 to 8 percent.

** RED HAT INC, Wednesday close $49.97, down 4 pct premarket

The world’s largest commercial distributor of the Linux operating system, on Thursday reported lower-than-expected fourth-quarter revenue.

Needham & Co on Thursday lowered its price target on the company’s stock to $60 from $63, citing its “tepid” forecast and lack of clarity on revenue growth from its virtualization and storage products. Susquehanna Financial Group also cut its target on the stock to $65 from $66.

** FIVE BELOW INC, Wednesday close $39.16, down 8 pct after market

The specialty value retailer forecast first-quarter and full-year results below Wall Street estimates, despite reporting strong fourth-quarter results, as it expects costs related to its new distribution centre and public company expenses to hurt gross margins in the first half of fiscal 2013.

** SPRINT NEXTEL CORP, Wednesday close $6.04

** CLEARWIRE CORP, Wednesday close $3.25

Clearwire plans to notify Sprint on Thursday that it will tap another $80 million of financing in April as part of its deal with the No. 3 U.S. wireless carrier, two people close to the matter said.

The U.S. government is seeking oversight of network equipment purchases as a condition to approve the $20 billion takeover of Sprint by Japanese mobile carrier Softbank Corp , the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

** DECKERS OUTDOOR CORP, $52.52, up 2 pct premarket

Brokerage Jefferies & Co raised its price target on the shoe maker’s stock to $100 from $65 and said prices of sheepskin, which is a major raw material for its UGG boots, are expected to decline in 2013, compared with roughly an 80 percent rise in the last two years.

“Further, as the company continues to branch out to more transitional product and its new UGG Pure material, a lower dependency on sheepskin should provide further tailwinds,” analysts at Jefferies wrote in a note to clients.

** SIGNET JEWELERS LTD, Wednesday close $63.27

The company reported better-than-expected quarterly results, lifted by sales gains at its mid-range Kay Jewelers chain, and raised its quarterly dividend by 25 percent.

** WINNEBAGO INDUSTRIES INC, Wednesday close $21.87

The largest U.S. motor home maker topped market expectations for the third straight quarter as demand for its motorhomes drove up revenue by nearly a third.

** COMMERCIAL METALS CO, Wednesday close $16.26

The metal recycler reported a lower net profit for the second quarter due to weak margins in its recycling and international mills businesses and economic challenges in markets like Europe.

The company said it does not expect any improvement in earnings in its international marketing and distribution segment due to weak global markets.

** US AIRWAYS GROUP, Wednesday close $16.65, up 3 pct after market

A judge on Wednesday approved AMR Corp’s plan to merge with US Airways Group, a step toward creating the world’s largest airline.

** BIOGEN IDEC INC, Wednesday close $182.68, up 2 pct premarket

U.S. regulators on Wednesday approved a new multiple sclerosis drug made by Biogen that is widely expected to become the No. 1 oral treatment for the disease, with annual sales topping $3 billion.

** GREENBRIER CO INC, Wednesday close $21.33, up 7 percent after market

The freight-car maker said it received orders for 5,400 railcars, valued at about $575 million, for the first three months of calendar year 2013.

** VERINT SYSTEMS INC, Wednesday close $34.83, up 6 pct after market

The developer of video and audio monitoring systems and analytical software reported better-than-expected second-quarter results on Wednesday and forecast revenue growth of 6 to 7 percent for the year ending Jan. 31, 2014.

“We expect margins to expand as analytics software increases as a percentage of overall revenue,” JP Morgan analyst Paul Coster wrote in a note to clients, and raised his price target on the stock to $41 from $39.50.

** GT ADVANCED TECHNOLOGIES, Wednesday close $3.00

The Solar and LED equipment maker said it signed a deal with Powertec Energy Corp to supply technology for production of 6,000 million metric ton annually (MTA) polysilicon for expansion of Powertec’s projects in Taiwan.

** THE EXONE COMPANY, Wednesday close $30.60, up 6 pct after market

The 3D printing company, which went public in February, reported higher fourth-quarter revenue on Wednesday, helped by a rise in demand for its new printer models.

** ARRAY BIOPHARMA INC, Wednesday close $4.98, down 5 pct after market

The biopharmaceutical company said it entered into a sales agreement with Cantor Fitzgerald for an at-the-marketing offering of up to $75 million of its common stock.

** PVH CORP, Wednesday close $112.79, down 5 pct after market

The clothing maker forecast 2013 profit well short of Wall Street estimates as it now expects its acquisition of Warnaco to drag on earnings this year due to the additional time needed to complete the integration.

** STEELCASE INC, Wednesday close $14.98, down 3 pct after market

The office furniture maker reported a quarterly loss due to charges from goodwill impairment and restructuring, and the company forecast first-quarter revenue below analysts’ expectations.

** GENWORTH FINANCIAL INC, Wednesday close $10.19, up 2 pct after market

The insurance provider will sell its wealth management and alternative investment businesses to private equity firms Aquiline Capital Partners and Genstar Capital for about $412.5 million as the insurer looks to raise funds to repay debt.

** GAMESTOP CORP, Wednesday close $26.45, up 1 pct after market

The world’s largest video game retailer, is expected to post lower revenue in its fourth quarter report. As the videogame industry copes with flagging sales, GameStop has relied on its strong used-games business, ahead of the launch of next generation versions of Microsoft’s Xbox and Sony’s PlayStation, due during the holiday season.

** MOSAIC CO, Wednesday close $58.68

The U.S. fertilizer producer reported a 26 percent rise in third-quarter profit, driven by higher potash and phosphate volumes, and said it expects producer inventories to be drawn down in coming months.

** A.P. PHARMA INC, Wednesday close $0.58 U.S. health regulators denied approval to A.P. Pharma’s drug for treating chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, and asked for additional analysis of existing late-stage data on the drug.

** AMERICAN INTERNATIONAL GROUP, Wednesday close $38.25

The insurer whose government bailout was marked by controversy over executive salaries, on Wednesday said its board adopted a clawback policy to recover compensation in case of mistakes or wrongdoing.

** JPMORGAN CHASE & CO, Wednesday close $47.77

A federal judge on Wednesday said the company must face a lawsuit by a pension plan that accused it of mismanaging its money by investing in Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc notes before that bank filed for bankruptcy in 2008.

** CHESAPEAKE ENERGY CORP, Wednesday close $20.53

The oil and gas company’s search for a new chief executive to replace Aubrey McClendon is likely to extend beyond an April 1 deadline, according to a person familiar with the situation.

** BOEING CO, Wednesday close $86.20

The plane maker’s CEO Jim McNerney is expected to be questioned about the troubled 787 at an aviation conference hosted by the US Chamber of Commerce in Washington. CEOs from United, Jetblue and other airlines along with leaders in manufacturing and aviation are also expected to attend the event.

** CITIGROUP INC, Wednesday close $44.46

The company on Wednesday won the dismissal of a lawsuit by Woori Bank over losses from mortgage-related investments, the third such defeat in a U.S. court for a South Korean bank that had been put under state control following financial crises.

** EBAY INC, Wednesday close $52.07

The e-commerce company holds its first investor day since 2011, and CEO John Donahoe and other executives are expected to lay out the e-commerce company’s vision and guidance through 2015. Expectations are high because Donahoe has promised a lot and has beaten expectations since launching a turnaround of the company at the 2009 investor day.

** PANASONIC CORP, Wednesday close $7.52

The Japanese electronics company said it will apply for voluntary delisting of its American Depositary Shares from the New York Stock Exchange in early April, as its listing on the exchange is “not economically justified”.

“The trading volume of Panasonic’s ADSs on the NYSE accounts for only a small fraction of the total trading volume of Panasonic’s shares,” the company said in a statement.

Panasonic also said it will spend 250 billion yen ($2.7 billion) over the next two years on a fresh round of restructuring to revive the company, but did not indicate if that spending would cover any possible job cuts.

** PFIZER INC, Wednesday close $28.64

The drugmaker suffered a second rejection in two days from Britain’s health cost watchdog NICE as its new kidney cancer drug Inlyta was turned down for use on the state health service.

** ZILLOW INC, Wednesday close $54.70

At least two brokerages raised their price targets on the real estate website’s stock.

Canaccord Genuity analyst Michael Graham raised his price target on the stock to $60 from $45, saying 2013 should see continued growth momentum from an improving housing market and early benefits from brand advertising.

** METROPCS COMMUNICATIONS INC, Wednesday close $10.53, up 2 pct premarket

Influential proxy advisory firm ISS threw its weight behind opponents of MetroPCS Communications’s proposed merger with T-Mobile USA, saying the deal undervalued the company and shareholders should vote against it.

** RAIT FINANCIAL TRUST, Wednesday close $8.14, down 5 pct after market

The real estate investment trust said it is offering 7 million common shares, representing 11 percent of its outstanding stock. The company had about 60.7 million shares outstanding as of March 15.

** CHEVRON CORP, Wednesday close $120.19

The oil and gas producer said on Wednesday its executive pay would reflect certain incidents in 2012 as well as a financial performance that outpaced the U.S. oil company’s peer group. (Compiled by Garima Goel)

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