April 18 (Reuters) - Some U.S. stocks on the move on Thursday:
Stocks fell after data showed signs of slower growth ahead for the U.S. economy, with traders zoning in on technicals to anticipate the market’s next move. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 52.19 points or 0.36 percent, to 14,566.40, the S&P 500 lost 6.82 points or 0.44 percent, to 1,545.19 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 26.03 points or 0.81 percent, to 3,178.64.
** VERIZON COMMUNICATIONS INC, $51.28, up 3.5 pct (1339 ET)
The telephone company reported a higher-than-expected first-quarter profit, driven by strength in its wireless business.
** MORGAN STANLEY, $20.51, down 4.5 pct (1339 ET)
The sixth-largest U.S. bank by assets said revenue from commodities trading fell sharply in the first quarter and it was working to dispose of nonessential commodity businesses.
** OVERSTOCK.COM INC, $15.23, up 33 pct (1357 ET)
The discount e-retailer reported a 19 percent jump in revenue helped by higher average order size. Gross profit in the quarter also improved due to a shift to higher margin home and garden products, and lower warehousing costs, in turn boosting profit.
** PRIMUS TELECOMMUNICATIONS GROUP INC, $12.25, up 24 pct (1209 ET)
The advanced communication solutions provider said on Wednesday it sold its data center operations in Canada, Blackiron Data ULC, to Rogers Communications Inc for about C$200 million ($195.15 million).
Primus provides domestic and international long-distance, Internet service, and Voice over Internet Protocol (VOIP). The stock, trading nearly ten times its average 10-day volume, was the top percentage gainer on the New York Stock Exchange at 1209 ET.
** SINOVAC BIOTECH LTD, $3.79, down 8.2 pct (1357 ET)
The pharmaceutical company said fourth-quarter revenue fell to $19 million, from $21.1 million a year ago, as the company recorded no sales of its H1N1 flu vaccine in the quarter ended Dec. 31.
** NORTHWEST BIOTHERAPEUTICS INC, $3.76, down 3.6 pct (1356 ET)
The company entered into an agreement with a healthcare-dedicated institutional investor for a registered direct placement of $10 million of its common stock. Northwest also said it will issue warrant coverage of 40 percent to the investor to buy shares of common stock at an exercise price of $4.29 per share.
** PEABODY ENERGY CORP, $20.57, up 8 pct (1356 ET)
** ARCH COAL INC, $5.04, up 11 pct (1404 ET)
The world’s largest private sector coal miner reported a smaller-than-expected first-quarter loss on Thursday as it pushed to cut costs in a tough market, but revenue fell just short of analysts’ expectations.
Shares of peer Arch Coal were also up on the news.
The company’s shares fell as much as 8 percent in their trading debut, valuing the company at nearly $900 million, well below the price Apollo Global Management LLC paid to acquire the chemical maker from CVC Capital Partners in 2011.
** PEPSICO INC, $81.66, up 4 pct (1356 ET)
The maker of Pepsi sodas, Tropicana juices, Frito-Lay snacks and Quaker oatmeal reported better-than-expected first-quarter earnings, as price increases helped margins.
** GREENHILL & CO INC, $46.20, down 10 percent (1355 ET)
The boutique investment bank reported first-quarter results on Wednesday that widely missed estimates due to an investment loss of $1.9 million compared to an investment gain of $9.4 million in the year-earlier quarter.
At least four brokerages cut their price target on the company’ stock.
** EAST WEST BANCORP, $23.08, down 4 pt (1354 ET)
The bank reported quarterly results on Wednesday that beat estimates, but net interest margin declined due to reduced non-covered loan portfolio yields.
BMO Capital Markets cut its rating on the company’s stock to “market perform” from “outperform,” while Sterne Agee downgraded it to “neutral” from “buy” and lowered its price target to $25 from $26.
** ESCO TECHNOLOGIES INC, $35.54, down 5.3 pct (1219 ET)
Brokerage Oppenheimer & Co downgraded the engineered products maker to “perform,” saying project delays in the US water market and fewer COOP deliveries lower Esco’s near-term outlook.
Wedbush Securities cut its target price to $48 from $50.
** SELECT COMFORT CORP, $18.04, up 3 pct (1357 ET)
Specialty mattress maker Select Comfort said it would revert to its earlier marketing strategy after a shift in advertising reduced exposure of its products to already cautious customers and hit sales.
“While management clearly took their eye off the ball on the marketing, they are aggressively working to rectify the situation and are seeing improvements in the business as a result,” Joan Storms of Wedbush Securities wrote in a note.
** UNIVERSAL FOREST PRODUCTS INC, $37.03, up 8.6 pct (1353 ET)
The maker of wood and wood-alternative products reported its first-quarter profit that beat analysts’ estimates with increased sales in each of its units due to 42.9 percent increase in the lumber market.
** J.C. PENNEY, $15.03, up 1.7 pct (1259 ET)
** MACYS INC, $43.12, down 1.2 pct (1259 ET)
New York appeals court judge, Justice Richard Andrias, ruled that J.C. Penney could sell Martha Stewart goods under a “JCP Everyday” label for now, pending an appeal by Macy‘s.
** COINSTAR INC, $54.47, down 3.5 (1353 ET)
Brokerage ITG Research lowered its revenue estimates for the operator of Redbox video rental kiosks, citing weak March sales trends, the flyonthewall.com reported.
** DANAHER CORP, $58.22, down 2.5 pct (1353 ET)
The industrial and healthcare conglomerate’s first-quarter profit missed analysts’ estimates as operating margin at its largest business, life sciences & diagnostics, fell about 60 basis points. The company also forecast second-quarter earnings below analysts’ estimates.
** CORE LABORATORIES NV, $137.44, up 9 pct (1351 ET)
The oilfield services company reported its first-quarter profit on Wednesday that topped analysts’ expectations, as revenue from its production enhancement operations, which deals with increasing oilfield recovery factor, rose 11 percent.
** NOBLE CORP, $36.26, up 4 pct (1351 ET)
The owner of the world’s third-largest offshore drilling fleet said Royal Dutch Shell Plc was in talks to extend its contract to use the Noble Discoverer beyond February 2014, underlining its long-term plans for the offshore Arctic.
** RANDGOLD RESOURCES LTD, $70.78, up 6 pct (1351 ET)
** NEWMONT MINING CORP, $32.76, up 1.3 pct (1351 ET)
** ANGLOGOLD ASHANTI LTD, $17.90, up 2 pct (1351 ET)
** BARRICK GOLD CORP , $17.78, up 1 pct (1351 ET)
** FIRST MAJESTIC SILVER INC, $11.62, up 6 pct (1351 ET)
** YAMANA GOLD INC, $11.53, up 4 pct (1351 ET)
** KINROSS GOLD CORP, $5.30, up 6 pct (1351 ET)
Gold rallied on Thursday in Europe after volatile Asian trade saw prices slide towards two-year lows hit earlier in the week, with strong physical buying set against exits from exchange-traded funds. The sharp drop in prices has triggered a spate of buying in gold bars, coins and nuggets in Asia, while U.S. gold coins have flown off dealers’ shelves.
** EXACT SCIENCES CORP, $7.95, down 20.2 pct (1348 ET)
The company said its molecular screening test for colorectal cancer met its goals in a large late-stage study, detecting the disease in more than 90 percent of patients, but its shares plummeted as much as 30 percent as the results were not as robust as some were expecting.
** TRAVELZOO INC, $24.30, up 12 pct (1348 ET)
The online travel deals company reported a 7 percent rise in first-quarter revenue, with its Europe travel business growing 14 percent.
** THERAVANCE INC, $32.07, up 14.5 pct (1348 ET)
An advisory panel to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has recommended that the agency approve an experimental treatment for smoking-related lung damage made by Britain’s GlaxoSmithKline Plc and Theravance.
** NOKIA OYJ , $3.17, down 11.5 pct (1316 ET)
A big fall in sales of the company’s basic phones overshadowed a stronger performance from its Lumia smartphones in the first quarter, and it said it expected operating margins to deteriorate.
Chief Executive Stephen Elop said tougher competition was the main reason behind the fall in sales of regular mobile phones.
** PHILIP MORRIS INTERNATIONAL INC, $91.67, down 2.5 pct (1347 ET)
The company, which sells Marlboro, reported first-quarter profit that missed estimates as cigarette shipment volumes declined 6.5 percent.
** ULTRATECH INC, $31.70, down 13 pct (1405 ET)
The company, which manufactures chip-making equipment, reported lower-than-expected quarterly results.
** PRIVATEBANCORP INC, $18.80, up 8 pct (1347 ET)
The lender reported higher-than-expected quarterly profit, helped by mortgage banking and syndication fee revenue. Non-interest income rose 11 percent to $30.5 million.
** UNIPIXEL INC, $33.24, down 12.7 pct (1346 ET)
The LCD film maker said its offering of 1.2 million shares was priced at $32 per share, a 16 percent discount to the stock’s closing price on Wednesday.
** PPG INDUSTRIES INC, $140.16, up 6 pct (1345 ET)
The protective and decorative coatings maker reported a quarterly profit that beat analysts’ estimates, helped by a strong demand in North America and Asia, and said it expects the positive momentum in these geographies to continue in the second quarter.
PPG also approved its quarterly dividend to 61 cents per share from 59 cents per share.
** UNION PACIFIC CORP, $142.91, up 4.3 pct (1345 ET)
The No.1 U.S. railroad reported a strong first quarter as higher freight rates offset a decline in coal shipments, and the company said it expects to ship more of the commodity in the current quarter.
** UNITEDHEALTH GROUP INC, $60.05, down 3 pct (1344 ET)
** HUMANA INC, $72.49, down 3 pct (1344 ET)
** AETNA INC, $54.52, down 1.4 pct (1344 ET)
** WELLCARE HEALTH PLANS INC, $57.53, down 3 pct (1344 ET)
** MOLINA HEALTHCARE INC, $32.89, down 1 pct (1344 ET)
** UNIVERSAL AMERICAN CORP, $8.78, down 2.2 pct (1344 ET)
** CENTENE CORP, $44.52, down 1.3 pct (1344 ET)
** WELLPOINT INC, $67.67, down 2 pct (1344 ET)
Shares of U.S. health insurers were down, a day after the largest U.S. health insurer UnitedHealth reported bleak first-quarter profit due to lower government payments for its private Medicare services and prescription plans for older Americans, and cut its 2013 revenue expectation.
** ALLISON TRANSMISSION HOLDINGS INC, $21.94, up 3.7 pct (1341 ET)
The maker of fully-automatic transmissions said late on Wednesday that investment funds affiliated with Carlyle Group LP and Onex Corp would not proceed with a secondary offering of Allison Transmission’s common stock due to market conditions.
** EBAY INC, $52.97, down 5.6 pct (1341 ET)
The e-commerce company gave a disappointing earnings forecast for the second quarter and said Europe was weak, pushing its shares lower in after-hours trade. (Compiled by Aditi Shrivastava; Editing by Joyjeet Das)