(For faster updates on individual market-movers, Eikon users please use search string "STXBZ US"; for more market insights, including options activity, ; for the Day Ahead newsletter, link.reuters.com/mex49s; for the Morning News Call newsletter, link.reuters.com/nex49s) U.S. stock index futures pointed to a lower open on Thursday after Ukraine's president said Russian forces had been brought into his country, bringing concerns over the volatile region back into focus and overshadowing some positive economic data. Dow Jones industrial average futures were down 0.37 percent at 17,030, S&P 500 futures were down 0.40 percent at 1,989 and Nasdaq 100 futures were down 0.38 percent at 4,057.25.
** SUNGY MOBILE LTD, -20.19 pct premarket
Oppenheimer & Co cut its rating on the Chinese mobile applications developer’s shares to “perform” from “outperform” and removed a $22 price target.
The company will accelerate spending on research and sales and marketing in the coming two quarters which will put “pressure” on margins, Oppenheimer analysts said in a note.
The company on Wednesday forecast third-quarter revenue of 90-95 million yuan ($14.7-$15.5 million), below the average analyst estimate of $18.3 million.
The company also said Chief Financial Officer Winston Li had resigned, effective Aug. 31.
** DOLLAR GENERAL CORP, Wednesday close $63.7, -0.60 pct premarket
** FAMILY DOLLAR STORES INC, Wednesday close $79.8
** DOLLAR TREE INC, Wednesday close $53.56
Dollar General said it remained committed to acquiring rival Family Dollar and that its offer was both superior and achievable than an offer from Dollar Tree.
Dollar General also reported lower-than-expected quarterly sales and comparable-store sales and cut the top end of its full-year comparable-store sales forecast.
** DIGITAL ALLY INC, Wednesday close $11.49, +21.93 pct premarket
Digital Ally said the Michigan police force placed an order for the company’s flagship video cameras for its fleet, highlighting the spike in demand for surveillance systems since a policeman fatally shot an unarmed teenager in Ferguson, Missouri on Aug. 9.
** REPROS THERAPEUTICS INC, Wednesday close $18.21, +16.04 pct premarket
** ABBVIE INC, Wednesday close $55.7
Repros Therapeutics said its experimental drug to treat low testosterone was superior to a leading marketed gel and a placebo in the first of two identical studies.
Patients who were given the drug, Androxal, experienced superiority in sperm concentration compared with those who used Abbvie’s AndroGel, said the company. The company said the proportion of subjects responding to Androxal were greater than the proportion responding to both the approved topical gel and placebo. The results of the second study have not yet been released.
** JPMORGAN CHASE & CO, Wednesday close $59.59, -0.45 pct premarket
** BANK OF AMERICA, Wednesday close $16.2, -0.74 pct premarket
** CITIGROUP INC, Wednesday close $51.86, -0.66 pct premarket
** WELLS FARGO, Wednesday close $51.34, -0.27 pct premarket
** MORGAN STANLEY, Wednesday close $34.13, -0.79 pct premarket
Stocks of U.S. banks fell in premarket trading after media reported that U.S. financial firms were infiltrated in cyber attacks by Russian hackers. JPMorgan Chase was named as one of the banks that came under attack. The FBI said it was working with the U.S. Secret Service to investigate the scope of attacks.
** ABERCROMBIE & FITCH CO, Wednesday close $44.2, -6.33 pct premarket
The teen apparel retailer’s same-store sales declined for the tenth straight quarter as it struggled to attract customers who held back discretionary spending amid wage cuts and fewer jobs.
** AMERICAN APPAREL INC, Wednesday close $0.984, -0.41 pct premarket
Private equity firm Lion Capital LLP has told American Apparel that it is exercising its right to fill one of the two vacant board seats it controls at the apparel retailer, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
** WILLIAMS-SONOMA INC, Wednesday close $74.89, -10.87 pct premarket
Morgan Stanley downgraded the home furnishing retailer’s stock to “equal-weight” and at least three brokerages cut their price targets.
Williams-Sonoma’s second-quarter sales missed analysts’ average expectation due to weak sales at its Pottery Barn and Pbteen brands.
** JOHNSON & JOHNSON, Wednesday close $103.22, -0.47 pct premarket
Johnson & Johnson is recalling some lots of its implant used to correct defects of the jaw, following more than a dozen cases of injury. The device, used to correct birth or post-traumatic jaw defects by gradually lengthening the bone, is being recalled by JNJ unit DePuy Synthes as it may reverse after surgery. In such cases, patients may require surgical intervention to replace the failed device.
** GUESS INC, Wednesday close $25.64, -8.23 pct premarket
The apparel retailer forecast full-year profit and sales below the average analyst estimate.
At least six brokerages cut their price target on the company’s stock to as low as $22. While the company works to improve revenue growth, it won’t likely build traction until fiscal 2016, Jefferies & Co said.
** MICROSOFT CORP, Wednesday close $44.87, -0.27 pct premarket
The company’s Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella is set to visit China in late September, a source familiar with the matter said on Thursday, as the Chinese government conducts an antitrust investigation into the world’s largest software company.
** MICROCHIP TECHNOLOGY INC, Wednesday close $47.66
British chipmaker CSR, which makes technology used in headphones and speaker docks, said it had rejected a takeover approach from Microchip Technology.
“The price proposed by Microchip has been rejected and the board is considering its options for the company,” CSR said in a short statement on Thursday.
** WORKDAY INC, Wednesday close $90.3, -0.89 pct premarket
Workday reported a better-than-expected 74 percent rise in quarterly revenue due to strong growth in subscriptions for its Web-based human resources and financial management software, and the company raised its full-year revenue forecast.
** LEAR CORP, Wednesday close $98.11
The maker of auto seats and electrical power systems said it would buy automotive leather supplier Eagle Ottawa LLC for $850 million to strengthen its core seating business and boost its luxury seats portfolio.
** LANNETT CO INC, Wednesday close $39.32, +1.60 pct premarket
Roth Capital Partners raised its price target on the generic drugmaker’s stock to $47 from $45. Lannett had raised its full-year revenue forecast to $350-$370 million from $330-$350 million.
** HANWHA SOLARONE CO LTD, Wednesday close $2.01, -7.96 pct premarket
The Chinese solar company said second-quarter revenue declined 7.4 percent to $178.5 million. The company said gross margin fell to 9.5 percent from 13.9 percent in the preceding quarter on lower selling price.
** TYSON FOODS INC, Wednesday close $37.71, +0.00 pct premarket
** HILLSHIRE BRANDS CO, Wednesday close $62.96
The largest U.S. meat processor on Wednesday won U.S. antitrust approval for its $8.5 billion purchase of Hillshire Brands.
To win approval for the merger, the companies agreed to sell Heinold Hog Markets, the U.S. Department of Justice said. The attorneys general of Iowa, Illinois and Missouri, all big hog-producing states, joined the settlement.
** PEABODY ENERGY, Wednesday close $15.97
The U.S. coal producer has pulled the $130 million sale of its Australian Wilkie Creek mine to former billionaire Nathan Tinkler, appearing to dash the young entrepreneur’s hopes of a coal comeback.
** GENERAL MOTORS CO, Wednesday close $34.71, -0.46 pct premarket
General Motors and the United Auto Workers on Wednesday trumpeted the news that production of the Cadillac SRX would be shifted from Mexico to Tennessee, but Reuters has learned that GM also plans to move some other assembly work in the opposite direction.
General Motors will partly offset that by moving some Chevrolet Equinox manufacturing from Tennessee to Mexico, an industry source told Reuters.
** APPLE INC, Wednesday close $102.13, -0.62 pct premarket
A U.S. judge rejected Apple’s latest bid for a permanent injunction against Samsung Electronics Co Ltd in another sign of the diminishing impact of the smartphone patent wars.
** DOW CHEMICAL CO, Wednesday close $53.64, +0.21 pct premarket
Dow Chemical has kicked off processes to sell two of its specialty chemicals subsidiaries that could fetch close to $2 billion combined, according to people familiar with the matter, part of its effort to divest several billion dollars worth of non-core assets by 2015.
** TIME WARNER CABLE INC, Wednesday close $147.11
The No. 2 U.S. cable operator suffered a massive network outage on Wednesday due to suspected human error that cut Internet services to some 11 million businesses and residences, prompting a New York state investigation.
** INTERMUNE INC, Wednesday close $73.18, +0.01 pct premarket
Roche Holding AG’s planned $8 billion purchase of InterMune is centered around hopes for blockbuster sales of its lung drug, but the smaller company’s development pipeline may end up giving the Swiss drugmaker a far bigger bang for its buck.
** VALEANT PHARMACEUTICALS INTERNATIONAL INC, Wednesday close $116.71
Valeant Pharmaceuticals and activist investor William Ackman won their request for an expedited trial on Wednesday over the timing of a special meeting of Allergan Inc shareholders, a key to their $50 billion hostile takeover fight.
** GLAXOSMITHKLINE PLC, Wednesday close $48.67, +0.55 pct premarket
An experimental Ebola vaccine from GlaxoSmithKline is being fast-tracked into human studies and the company plans to build a stockpile of up to 10,000 doses for emergency deployment, if results are good.
** CME GROUP INC, Wednesday close $76.46
CME Group’s 49-year-old chief financial officer will retire at the end of the year and will be replaced by an executive who is a year older, the world’s largest futures exchange operator said on Wednesday.
** 21VIANET GROUP INC, Wednesday close $28.31, +0.88 pct premarket
Canaccord Genuity raised its price target on the stock of the China-based internet data center to $35 from $31 after the company forecast third-quarter and full-year revenue above analysts’ average estimate.
** ONCOMED PHARMACEUTICALS INC, Wednesday close $19.63, +1.88 pct premarket
OncoMed said the U.S. Food and Drug Administration lifted a partial hold on patient enrolments for three trials testing its experimental cancer drug, vantictumab.
Enrolment of new patients is expected to resume in the next few weeks pending revised trial protocol approvals, the company said.
** GT ADVANCED TECHNOLOGIES INC, Wednesday close $18.57, -2.05 pct premarket
Raymond James cut its rating on the solar and LED equipment maker’s stock to “underperform” from “market perform”, according to Theflyonthewall.com. (Compiled by Lehar Maan in Bangalore; Edited by Maju Samuel)