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The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.46 percent at 18,661.63, the S&P 500 was up 0.43 percent at 2,193.39 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 0.67 percent at 5,267.915.
** MID-AMERICA APARTMENT COMMUNITIES INC, $96.16, -5.86 pct
** POST PROPERTIES INC, $67.39, +8.31 pct
Mid-America Apartment said it would buy Post Properties for about $3.88 billion to create the largest publicly traded multifamily apartment real estate investment trust by units.
** VALEANT PHARMACEUTICALS INTERNATIONAL INC, $26.68, +7.06 pct
Mizuho Securities raised its rating on the Canadian drugmaker's stock to "neutral" from "underperform", saying that "because Valeant can relax its interest coverage covenants, we just don't think it will matter as much if the company misses its guidance in future quarters." Valeant is offering to pay lenders higher interest rates to obtain an amendment to its debt agreement that would loosen one of its covenants, Reuters reported on Tuesday.
Mizuho, which had an "underperform" rating on the stock since March, more than doubled its price target to $25 from $11.
** AURINIA PHARMACEUTICALS INC, $1.78, -56.48 pct
The Canadian drug developer said its experimental lead drug, voclosporin, met the main goal of improving remission rates in patients with lupus nephritis, in a mid-stage study. However, there were 13 deaths reported across the trial, which the company said were deemed unrelated to the study drug.
** TWITTER INC, $20.75, +6.19 pct
The microblogging service provider is in talks with Apple Inc to bring the Twitter app to Apple TV, the New York Times reported on Sunday, citing sources. Twitter is also in discussions with major league soccer and professional golfers association for streaming deals, the NYT reported. (nyti.ms/2aUN3ae)
** PERFORMANCE SPORTS GROUP LTD, $1.43, -58.91 pct
The Canadian sports equipment maker, formerly known as Bauer Performance Sports, said it could default on its debt due to a delay in filing its annual report as a result of an internal investigation with respect to its financial statements. The annual report was due Monday.
** SYSCO CORP, $52.67, +0.88 pct
The food distribution company reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit, helped by lower dairy and meat prices.
Separately, activist investor Nelson Peltz's Trian Fund Management LLP increased its stake in the company by about 1.6 percent at end of June 30, according to a filing. (bit.ly/2bo8TS8)
** XYLEM INC, $50.27, +3.76 pct
The U.S. water technology company said it would buy Sensus USA Inc, a provider of advanced metering technologies to utilities, for around $1.7 billion in cash.
** SALESFORCE.COM INC, $79.29, -2.87 pct
OTR Global cut its rating on the cloud-based software maker's stock to "mixed" from "positive", Benzinga.com reported. (bit.ly/2bjO8E1).
A trader at a large U.S. firm also cited negative commentary by Piper Jaffray as a reason for the fall in the stock. Saleforce.com said it would now release its second-quarter results on Aug. 31, instead of Aug. 29, to "accommodate a scheduling conflict."
** PROFESSIONAL DIVERSITY NETWORK INC, $0.701, +32.26 pct
The professional networking websites operator said it would sell controlling stake to Cosmic Forward Ltd, a Seychelles private company wholly owned by a group of Chinese investors.
** SELECT COMFORT CORP, $27.81, +7.96 pct
Piper Jaffray raised its rating on the mattress maker's stock to "overweight" from "neutral" and the price target to $31 from $23. As the company moves past its transformation and investment years, its capital spending and acquisitions are expected to decline from $90 million per year to $50 million-$60 million, analyst Peter Keith wrote in a note. Select Comfort's cash flow from operations is also expected to be $175 million-$200 million per year through 2019, he wrote.
Wedbush raised its price target on the stock on Friday to $27 from $21. (Reporting by Kirti Pandey)