(For more market insights, including options activity, click on ; for the Day Ahead newsletter link.reuters.com/mex49s; for the Morning News Call newsletter, link.reuters.com/nex49s) U.S. stock index futures edged up on Wednesday, with technicals in focus and scant key items on the U.S. economic calendar, following yet another record close on the benchmark S&P 500 index. Dow Jones industrial average futures were up 0.14 percent at 16,677, S&P 500 futures were down 0.01 percent at 1,909 and Nasdaq 100 futures were down 0.09 percent at 3,718.
** TWITTER INC, Tuesday close $30.51, +2.92 pct premarket
Nomura Securities raised its rating on the microblogging website’s shares to “buy” from “neutral”, saying advertising on Twitter is steadily becoming a bigger part of ad budgets and its revenue from outside the United States is expected to grow.
** ACURA PHARMACEUTICALS INC, Tuesday close $1.26, -15.87 pct premarket
The biotechnology company on Tuesday said the U.S. health regulator advised Acura that mid-stage study data of its experimental drug to deter the abuse of a hydrocodone/acetaminophen painkiller, are insufficient to support an intranasal abuse deterrence claim.
The hydrocodone/acetaminophen combination painkiller, widely referred to as the generic vicodin, is sold under a variety of names.
** PETROLOGISTICS LP, Tuesday close $12.93, +9.55 pct premarket
A Koch Industries Inc unit will take PetroLogistics LP private in a deal worth $2.1 billion, including debt, gaining control of a plant that can convert cheap U.S. shale gas into propylene, a key petrochemical used to make plastics.
** CHINA SUNERGY CO LTD, Tuesday close $3.79, -12.40 pct premarket
The solar company reported a smaller loss in the first quarter, helped by increase in shipments to higher-margin markets like Japan and France. Net income attributable to shareholders narrowed to $14.7 million, or 99 cents per American depository share (ADS) in the quarter ended March 31, from $22.9 million, or $1.71 per ADS, a year earlier.
** GALECTIN THERAPEUTICS INC, Tuesday close $12.3, +4.07 pct premarket
The biotechnology company said it received a notice of allowance from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for a patent application that covers both composition claim for and uses of the company’s lead experimental drug in patients with diabetic nephropathy, a type of progressive kidney disease.
** DSW INC, $32.52, -20.66 pct premarket
The shoe retailer reported first-quarter results that missed analysts’ estimates, hurt by unseasonal weather and an aggressively promotional retail environment. The company also forecast fiscal 2014 adjusted earnings below the average analyst estimate.
** WET SEAL INC, Tuesday close $1.01, -11.88 pct premarket
Women’s apparel retailer reported a bigger-than-expected quarterly loss, hurt by a double-digit fall in comparable-store sales.
** JDS UNIPHASE CORP, Tuesday close $10.92, +1.74 pct premarket
The maker of fiber optic components used in network communication equipment said on Tuesday it will buy back up to $100 million of its common stock through open market or private transactions.
The company, which had $926.2 million in cash on March 29, will repurchase the shares by June 27, 2015.
** MAGNUM HUNTER RESOURCES CORP, Tuesday close $7.33, +5.73 pct premarket
The oil and gas producer said it would sell 21.4 million shares of the company’s common stock at $7 each in a private offering. The offer represents a 4.5 percent discount to the stock’s Tuesday close of $7.33.
** BIOCRYST PHARMACEUTICALS INC, Tuesday close $9.99, -4.90 pct premarket
The company said it plans to sell some shares and estimated that its full-year operating expenses would be at the higher end of the $48 million-$59 million it had earlier forecast. Accelerated development of its oral hereditary disorder drug would push up costs.
BioCryst on Tuesday said the preventive hereditary angioedema treatment was found superior to a placebo in a mid-stage trial.
** HEALTH CARE REIT INC, Tuesday close $64.43, -2.86 pct premarket
The real estate investment trust was offering 12 million common shares and would use part of the net proceeds to invest in healthcare and housing properties along with the repayment of advances under its primary unsecured credit facility. The company said it expected to acquire around $414 million of senior housing and medical housing properties in second quarter.
** 3D SYSTEMS CORP, Tuesday close $56.64, -6.34 pct premarket
The 3D printer maker announced an offering of 6 million shares on Tuesday. It plans to use the proceeds for acquisitions.
Pacific Crest cut its price target on the stock to $59 from $65 on Wednesday, saying that plans for making a large acquisition will do little to quell concerns that the company is growing primarily through acquisitions.
** FORMFACTOR INC, Tuesday close $6.12, +11.11 pct premarket
The semiconductor wafer probe maker raised its second-quarter revenue forecast as it expects higher sales of its memory chips. The company raised its revenue forecast to between $65 million and $69 million from $62 to $66 million.
Brokerage B. Riley & Co raised its rating on the stock to “buy”, while Needham & Co raised its price target to $9 from $8.
** QIHOO 360 TECHNOLOGY CO LTD, Tuesday close $89.98, +3.08 pct premarket
The China-based antivirus software maker and search engine provider on Tuesday reported better-than-expected first-quarter profit and revenue, helped by higher subscription for the copany’s mobile security product.
** WORKDAY INC, Tuesday close $82.13, +4.71 pct premarket
The software vendor raised its full-year revenue forecast after reporting better-than-expected quarterly revenue as more companies, especially in the financial sector, opted for its web-based human resources software.
** TOLL BROTHERS INC, Tuesday close $35.64, +3.79 pct premarket
** D.R. HORTON INC, Tuesday close $23.13, +1.38 pct premarket
** PULTEGROUP INC, Tuesday close $19.8, +1.06 pct premarket
** LENNAR CORP, Tuesday close $40.47, +1.26 pct premarket
** KB HOME, Tuesday close $16.58, +1.33 pct premarket
The largest U.S. luxury homebuilder said quarterly profit more than doubled as it sold more homes at higher prices.
Shares of peers D.R. Horton, Pultegroup, Lennar and KB Home were also up on the news.
** SEADRILL LTD, Tuesday close $37.56, +1.54 pct premarket
The world’s biggest offshore rig firm by market capitalization, has turned gloomy about prospects for the global drilling market and expects falling charter rates as oil firms cut capital spending to protect margins.
** CITIGROUP INC, Tuesday close $47.57, -0.19 pct premarket
Markets revenue at the financial services corporation is expected to decline 20-25 percent in the second quarter from a year earlier because of lackluster fixed-income trading, Chief Financial Officer John Gerspach said on Tuesday.
** BANK OF AMERICA CORP, Tuesday close $15.22, +0.33 pct premarket
The banking and financial services company is looking to diversify its investment banking business by doing more equity underwriting and merger advisory work and by winning more clients outside the United States, a senior executive said on Tuesday.
** ALLERGAN INC, Tuesday close $165.02, -0.32 pct premarket
** VALEANT PHARMACEUTICALS INTERNATIONAL INC, Tuesday close $129.95, -0.95 pct premarket
Canadian drugmaker Valeant Pharmaceuticals raised the cash component of its offer for Botox-maker Allergan, valuing the U.S. firm at $49.44 billion.
Also, Nestle SA said it was boosting its emerging skincare business by buying the rights to several dermatology products from the Canadian drugmaker for $1.4 billion in cash.
** NIKE INC, Tuesday close $76.61, -0.14 pct premarket
The U.S. sportswear group is banking on its sponsorship of more of the world’s best-known soccer stars than Adidas in its battle to overtake the German firm as the sport’s top-selling brand at its World Cup this summer.
** SYNAPTICS INC, Tuesday close $60.47, +0.86 pct premarket
Japanese semiconductor manufacturer Renesas Electronics Corp plans to sell its majority stake in a maker of display chips for Apple Inc’s iPhone to the smartphone chip supplier, according to sources familiar with the matter.
** GLAXOSMITHKLINE PLC, Tuesday close $54.96, -1.55 pct premarket
Britain’s fraud office has launched a formal criminal investigation into the drugmaker, posing a new challenge to the company, which already faces claims of bribery in China and four other countries.
** SANOFI SA, Tuesday close $53.18, -0.30 pct premarket
** ELI LILLY AND CO, Tuesday close $59.73, +0.45 pct premarket
Sanofi and Eli Lilly have agreed to pursue regulatory approval for over-the-counter sales of erectile dysfunction treatment Cialis, the French and U.S. drugmakers said in a statement on Wednesday.
** AMAZON.COM INC, Tuesday close $310.82, -0.91 pct premarket
The e-commerce company is preparing for a long battle with Hachette Book Group over a contract dispute that led the U.S. online retailer to curtail sales of some of the publisher’s books.
** APPLE INC, Tuesday close $625.63, -0.10 pct premarket
Multiple users on the iPhone maker’s online support forum and Twitter Inc have reported an unusual smartphone and tablet hack in which cyber attackers were said to have locked Australian users’ smartphones and demanded payment in return for unlocking them.
** FACEBOOK INC, Tuesday close $63.48, -0.57 pct premarket
Thailand’s information technology ministry blocked the social networking website and planned to hold talks with other sites to stem protests against the military government, a senior official said.
Also, Facebook has asked European Union antitrust regulators to examine its $19 billion takeover of mobile messaging service WhatsApp, a person with direct knowledge of the matter said on Wednesday.
** GOOGLE INC, Tuesday close $574.87, -0.57 pct premarket
The search giant is building cars that don’t have steering wheels, accelerator pedals or brake pedals, in an ambitious expansion of the Internet company’s efforts to develop self-driving cars.
** TATA MOTORS LTD, Tuesday close $39.72, -0.55 pct premarket
India’s largest automaker by revenue, said its domestic operations would likely not post a profit or would have “inadequate” profit for the fiscal year that ended in March, hurt by sluggish demand.
** CLIFFS NATURAL RESOURCES INC, Tuesday close $16.37, +1.10 pct premarket
The miner fighting an activist investor who wants to split it up and replace its CEO, said on Tuesday it will cut 2014 capital spending by $100 million - or 25 percent - as it deals with weak seaborne iron ore and metallurgical coal prices.