July 8, 2015 / 5:39 PM / 2 years ago

BUZZ-U.S. STOCKS ON THE MOVE-Microsoft, Intel, oil stocks, automakers

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Trading in all securities was halted on the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday due to technical difficulties, although NYSE-listed issues continued to trade on other exchanges, such as those run by Nasdaq OMX Group NDAQ.O and BATS Global Markets. The halt started just after 11:30 a.m. ET, after which U.S. stocks slightly extended their losses, but in low volumes, with the S&P 500 hitting a session low and the Dow Jones Industrial Average and Nasdaq both falling more than 1 percent. The Dow Jones industrial average was down 1.00 percent at 17,598.46, the S&P 500 was down 1.15 percent at 2,057.48 and the Nasdaq Composite was down 1.27 percent at 4,934.047.

** MICROSOFT CORP, $44.49, +0.43 pct

The world’s largest software company said it would cut 7,800 jobs, mostly in its phone hardware business, to reduce costs and streamline its operations.

** TESLA MOTORS INC, $258.342, -3.56 pct

Analysts at Pacific Crest cut their rating on the company’s stock to “sector weight” from “overweight” on valuation.

“From root-level technology and manufacturing all the way to sales and marketing, Tesla’s differentiation relative to its peer group is nothing short of total,” analyst Brad Erickson wrote in a note. “We simply believe the stock price now more fully reflects these core attributes,” he added.

** FORD MOTOR CO, $14.61, -1.62 pct

** GENERAL MOTORS CO, $31.38, -4.50 pct

** FIAT CHRYSLER AUTOMOBILES NV, $13.81, -2.20 pct

** DELPHI AUTOMOTIVE PLC, $79.44, -5.47 pct

U.S. automakers’ shares fell on concerns of falling car sales in China, Russia and Brazil, says Susquehanna Financial Group analyst Matthew Stover.

New car sales in Russia are expected to fall 36 pct this year, the Association of European Businesses says, a more pessimistic forecast than it had previously given.

June sales fell to their lowest monthly level in more than 6 years in Brazil, South America’s largest auto market and a major operations base for General Motors, Ford and Fiat Chrysler.

China’s slowest economic growth in 25 years has lowered demand for cars. Ford said on Wednesday that January-June sales rose just 0.1 pct from year earlier

** PERFICIENT INC, $15.77, -17.04 pct

The IT services provider said it estimated second-quarter revenue of $108.2 million-$109.2 million, below its forecast of $110.5 million-$120.9 million and below the average analyst estimate of $114.1 million.

** OCULUS INNOVATIVE SCIENCES INC, $1.652, +10.13 pct

The company, which develops solutions to treat dermatological conditions, said it received a new U.S. patent for its Microcyn Technology hypochlorous acid in treatment of atopic dermatitis, a type of itchy skin disorder.

** PRIMA BIOMED LTD, $1.3, -19.75 pct

The company said it will sell 100 million shares to raise up to A$5 million ($3.7 million) to fund R&D. (1.usa.gov/1NOhsP9)

** AMEDICA CORP, $0.4656, -16.11 pct

The medical device maker filed for a mixed shelf offering with U.S. regulators. (1.usa.gov/1KOnq4P)

** ALIBABA GROUP HOLDING INC, $78.15, -1.85 pct

** BAIDU INC, $187.016, -0.28 pct

** WEIBO CORP, $13.34, -0.41 pct

** CHINA DANGDANG INC, $6.39, -4.34 pct

** JUMEI INTERNATIONAL HOLDING LTD, $17.32, -1.65 pct

** AIRMEDIA GROUP INC, $3.725, -6.88 pct

** IDREAMSKY TECHNOLOGY LTD, $9.03, -8.60 pct

** SINOPEC SHANGHAI PETROCHEMICAL CO LTD, $33.5, -14.12 pct

Shares of U.S.-listed Chinese companies mirrored a nosedive in Chinese stocks on the mainland as investors shrugged off support measures by Chinese regulators.

** ENPHASE ENERGY INC, $6.5999, -12.82 pct

JP Morgan cut its rating on the company’s stock to “neutral” from “overweight” and price target to $10 from $16, citing pricing pressure.

** K2M GROUP HOLDINGS INC, $22.68, -6.20 pct

The medical device maker’s offering of 4.5 million shares was priced at $22.60 per share, a discount of 6.5 percent to the stock’s Tuesday close.

** HARLEY-DAVIDSON INC, $55.03, -2.88 pct

Analyst at RBC Capital Markets cut their rating to “sector perform” from “outperform” and price target to $59 from $66.

“Our rating is based on our view that near term retail sales remain soft, a lack of visibility into what can re-accelerate retail demand in the face of modest industry growth (and) increasing competition,” analyst Joseph Spak said.

** SYMANTEC CORP, $22.995, +0.90 pct

** CARLYLE GROUP LP, $27.19, -2.68 pct

Software security company Symantec is in talks to sell its Veritas data storage business to private equity firm Carlyle Group, a person familiar with the matter said on Tuesday.

** GREAT BASIN SCIENTIFIC INC, $2.96, +9.63 pct

The diagnostic test maker launched its molecular diagnostic test for Group B Streptococcus (GBS) in hospitals and laboratories in United States.

** CYPRESS ENERGY PARTNERS LP, $14.56, -8.20 pct

** BILL BARRETT CORP, $7.11, -7.42 pct

** PENN VIRGINIA CORP, $3.52, -7.37 pct

** COMSTOCK RESOURCES INC, $2.15, -6.93 pct

** BONANZA CREEK ENERGY INC, $14.66, -6.21 pct

** W&T OFFSHORE INC, $4.55, -6.19 pct

Oil prices fell below $57 per barrel on Wednesday as data showed an unexpected build in U.S. crude oil and product stocks.

** ASCENT SOLAR TECHNOLOGIES, $0.4576, -8.48 pct

The solar module maker said it expects that a strong shipment backlog helped second-quarter revenue double to $2.2 million.

** INTEL CORP, $29.58, -1.07 pct

At least three brokerages cut price targets by as much as $3.50 to as low as $29. Bernstein analysts said the trajectory of PC demand has likely worsened from three months ago, when the company last gave its outlook.

** QORVO INC, $74.9602, -6.24 pct

** SKYWORKS SOLUTIONS INC, $95.971, -4.50 pct

** MICRON TECHNOLOGY INC, $17.7099, -2.69 pct

** ADVANCED MICRO DEVICES INC, $2.015, -3.59 pct

The Philadelphia Semiconductor Index fell 2.8 percent, at its lowest level since early February, as China’s slowdown spreads, and as brokers cut price targets on industry bellwether Intel.

** JPMORGAN CHASE & CO, $65.77, -1.54 pct

** BANK OF AMERICA CORP, $16.42, -1.62 pct

** CITIGROUP INC, $53.33, -2.15 pct

The big banks have been up over the past few weeks on expectations of higher interest rates and that’s at risk now, with concerns about Greece and China leading to a drop-off in yields, analysts at Argus Research Co and RBC Capital Markets said.

** POTASH CORP OF SASKATCHEWAN INC, $29.45, -1.17 pct

The Canadian company is confident that K+S AG shareholders would accept its $8.7 billion bid, but is open to raising it if its German rival could reveal more value, the Globe and Mail reported, citing a source close to the deal.

** MONSANTO CO, $106.56, -1.15 pct

** SYNGENTA AG, $80.72, -2.79 pct

Monsanto believes offering a higher break-up fee to Syngenta if its $45 billion takeover approach does not go ahead would be counterproductive, Chief Executive Hugh Grant told a Swiss newspaper.

Compiled by Anet Josline Pinto in Bengaluru; Editing by Simon Jennings

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