March 15, 2017 / 5:51 PM / in 9 months

BUZZ-U.S. STOCKS ON THE MOVE-Catalyst Pharma, MSCI, Magicjack

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U.S. stocks rose in early afternoon trading on Wednesday, with investors counting down to the conclusion of the Federal Reserve’s two-day meeting, where the central bank is widely expected to raise rates for the first time this year.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.23 percent at 20,885.53, the S&P 500 was up 0.39 percent at 2,374.63 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 0.30 percent at 5,874.282.

** CATALYST PHARMACEUTICALS INC, $1.58, +35.04 pct

The company said its experimental drug to treat patients with a severe form of myasthenia gravis, a rare neuromuscular disease, met the main goals of a study.

** MSCI INC, $98.99, +2.76 pct

The U.S. market index compiler said it was not in talks for a possible takeover following a media report that financial data provider S&P Global Inc SPGI.N was looking to buy the company for $11 billion.

** RUBICON PROJECT INC, $6.01, -28.37 pct

The online advertisement services provider forecast first-quarter revenue below analysts’ estimates, prompting at least two brokerages to downgrade the stock.

** NEOPHOTONICS CORP, $9.14, +13.12 pct

The telecom network equipment maker forecast first-quarter revenue below analysts’ estimates.

** EVERI HOLDINGS INC, $3.74, +15.43 pct

Brokerages Telsey Advisory Group and Craig Hallum upgraded the provider of cash services to casinos stock with their top ratings.

** TWITTER INC, $14.89, -2.81 pct

The diplomatic spat between Turkey and the Netherlands spread online when a large number of Twitter accounts, many with no apparent connection to the dispute, were hijacked and replaced with anti-Nazi messages in Turkish.

** NAVIOS MARITIME PARTNERS LP, $2.18, -12.80 pct

The shipping firm said late Tuesday it would sell 47.6 million common shares, or about 56 percent of its outstanding shares. The offering was priced at $2.10 per unit, a 16 pct discount to the stock’s Tuesday close.

** ACHAOGEN INC, $23.03, -8.79 pct

The drug developer posted a bigger-than-expected fourth-quarter loss, hurt by higher research and development expenses.

** CAPITAL BANK FINANCIAL CORP, $43.90, +7.34 pct

The bank holding company is exploring a sale after it received an unsolicited takeover approach, Bloomberg reported, citing sources.

** ABRAXAS PETROLEUM CORP, $1.79, +13.69 pct

The oil and gas producer posted a surprise fourth-quarter profit.

** ARCOS DORADOS HOLDINGS INC, $7.15, +12.60 pct

The Latin America’s largest operator of McDonald’s restaurants signed a deal with the burger chain to open 180 restaurants and reinvest $292 million in the existing ones for three-year period.

** MAGICJACK VOCALTEC LTD, $7.97, +8.44 pct

The maker of devices used for internet calling said it named Don Carlos Bell as its new CEO, succeeding Gerald Vento. The company has received multiple unsolicited offers which are at varying stages of diligence and financing commitment, Bell said.

** ARENA PHARMACEUTICALS INC, $1.58, +11.27 pct

The drugmaker’s fourth-quarter profit and sales beat analysts’ estimates, as it booked $72.1 million in upfront payments from weight loss drug, Belviq.

** CYPRESS ENERGY PARTNERS LP, $9.80, -17.23 pct

The oilfield services and equipment provider’s fourth-quarter revenue missed Wall Street estimates.

** PATRIOT NATIONAL INC, $2.23, -21.20 pct

Two brokerages cut price targets on the company’s stock after a surprise fourth-quarter adjusted loss on Tuesday.

** VOYAGER THERAPEUTICS INC, $11.03, -4.03 pct

The gene therapy company posted a wider-than-expected fourth-quarter loss, hurt by higher research and development expenses.

** PULTEGROUP INC, $23.27, +0.39 pct

** D.R. HORTON INC, $32.94, +0.12 pct

** LENNAR CORP, $51.47, -0.25 pct

** HOVNANIAN ENTERPRISES INC, $2.20, +0.92 pct

U.S. homebuilders’ shares jumped briefly after stronger-than-expected data from the National Association of Home Builders, but reversed course as investors waited to hear from the Federal Reserve.

** NEFF CORP, $16.10, +9.90 pct

Brokerage BofA Merrill Lynch upgraded the construction equipment rental chain’s stock to “buy” from “underperform”.

** CESCA THERAPEUTICS INC, $3.17, +10.45 pct

The company reported encouraging trial data on its experimental cell therapy using PRP (platelet rich plasma) to treat chronic non-healing ulcers.

** FTD COMPANIES INC, $18.55, -20.69 pct

The floral and gifting company posted lower-than-expected fourth-quarter revenue, as fewer customers ordered flowers and gift items.

** PENN WEST PETROLEUM LTD, $1.53, +6.64 pct

The company raised its full-year 2017 average production forecast.

** TITAN INTERNATIONAL INC, $10.75, -12.39 pct

The industrial equipment maker posted a bigger-than-expected fourth-quarter loss, hurt by higher expenses. (Compiled by Akankshita Mukhopadhyay in Bengaluru)

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