February 25, 2013 / 12:47 PM / in 5 years

MARKET PULSE-Barnes & Noble, Zynga, Apple, Hertz, Affymax, Dynavax

Feb 25 (Reuters) - Some U.S. stocks to watch on Monday:

US STOCKS-FUTURES ADVANCE, BARNES & NOBLE UP EARLY

U.S. stock index futures rose on Monday, suggesting the recent rally for equities remains intact in spite of concerns that the U.S. Federal Reserve could curtail its stimulus sooner than many expected. &P 500 futures rose 6.4 points Dow Jones industrial average futures added 39 points and Nasdaq 100 futures rose 17.25 points.

** BARNES & NOBLE INC, Friday close $13.51, up 18 pct premarket

Barnes & Noble Inc Chairman Leonard Riggio has told the board he plans to buy the retail assets of the company including Barnes & Noble Booksellers Inc and barnesandnoble.com, but excluding the Nook digital reader business.

** APPLE INC, Friday close $450.81, up 1 pct premarket

A U.S. judge handed outspoken hedge fund manager David Einhorn a victory in his battle with Apple on Friday, blocking the iPhone maker from moving forward with a shareholder vote on a controversial proposal to limit the company’s ability to issue preferred stock.

** INTEL INC, Friday close $20.42, up 1 pct premarket

PC chipmaker Intel hopes its new smartphone processor will help it find a foothold in a mobile market coalescing around Apple, Samsung and Qualcomm.

** ZYNGA INC, Friday close $3.19, up 8 pct premarket

Nevada has become the first U.S. state to legalize interstate online poker and allow state-to-state gaming agreements, beating New Jersey to the punch and putting in place a potential nationwide framework for Internet wagering.

A number of companies have already been granted Nevada licenses for online poker, but were prepared to be limited to serving Nevada residents. Applicants include social gaming leader Zynga.

** HERTZ GLOBAL HOLDINGS INC, Friday close $18.73, down 2 pct premarket

Hertz reported a quarterly loss due to costs related to its acquisition of Dollar Thrifty, but adjusted profit beat analysts’ expectations and the car rental company forecast strong results for 2013 on higher pricing.

** BLACKBERRY, Friday close $13.18, up 2 pct premarket

As BlackBerry launches the first smartphone from its make-or-break BB10 line in India, one of its most loyal markets, the company faces new competition from a formidable rival that has long had a minimal presence in the country.

More than four years after it started selling iPhones in India, Apple is now aggressively pushing the iconic device through installment payment plans that make it more affordable, a new distribution model and heavy marketing blitz.

** HECLA MINING CO, Friday close $4.87

The second-largest U.S. silver miner by output is scheduled to report fourth-quarter results On Monday

** CHESAPEAKE ENERGY CORP, Friday close $20.50, up 2 pct premarket

China Petroleum & Chemical Corp (Sinopec), Asia’s largest oil refiner, will buy half of Chesapeake Energy Corp’s Mississippi Lime oil and gas properties in Oklahoma and Kansas for $1.02 billion, making it the latest Chinese company to pick up shale assets in North America.

** LOWE‘S COS, Friday close $37.67, up 2 pct premarket

Lowe’s Cos’ quarterly results beat analysts’ estimates as sales benefited from rebuilding after Hurricane Sandy and the retailer’s efforts to improve product selection and customer service.

** DICK‘S SPORTING GOODS INC, Friday close $48.95

** FOOT LOCKER INC, Friday close $33.96

Dick’s Sporting shares could rise 23 percent within the next year if the largest publicly traded U.S. sporting goods retailer continues to boost profit at a mid-teens percentage rate, Barron’s said in its Feb. 25 edition.

** AFFYMAX INC, Friday close $16.52, down 75 pct premarket

U.S.-based Affymax and Japan’s Takeda Pharmaceutical Co said they are voluntarily recalling all lots of anemia treatment Omontys (peginesatide) in the United States due to reports of serious hypersensitivity reactions, including some deaths.

Brokerage Baird Equity Research downgraded the stock to “neutral” from “outperform” with a price target of $4.

JMP downgraded Affymax’s stock to “market underperform” from “market outperform” with a price target of $2.50.

** DYNAVAX TECHNOLOGIES INC, Friday close $2.97, down 37 pct premarket

U.S. health regulators denied approval for Dynavax Technologies Inc’s adult hepatitis B vaccine pending additional data to evaluate its safety, potentially delaying the U.S. market entry of the company’s first promising product.

** DURATA THERAPEUTICS INC, Friday close $7.54, up 13 pct premarket

The drugmaker said its experimental skin antibiotic met the main goal of a second late-stage study. The drug aims to target acute bacterial skin infections including infections caused by methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).

** 3D SYSTEMS CORP, Friday close $56.95

The 3D printer maker’s shares will start trading post a three-for-two stock split on Monday.

The company said that on Feb. 22, every shareholder at the close of business on Feb. 15 will receive one additional share for every two shares held on the record date.

3D Systems is scheduled to report fourth-quarter results on Monday.

** YUM BRANDS INC, Friday close $65.45

Yum Brands, aiming to reverse a steep drop in business at its KFC restaurants in China after a chicken safety scare, will outline in Beijing on Monday details of its strengthened food quality assurance program.

** GENERAL MOTORS CO, Friday close $27.11

** AT&T INC, Friday close $35.68

** VERIZON COMMUNICATIONS, Friday close $45.40

GM has chosen AT&T to provide high-speed wireless service for its 2015 car models, dropping its long-term provider Verizon Wireless.

** KNIGHT CAPITAL GROUP, Friday close $3.73

** STIFEL FINANCIAL CORP, Friday close $38.04

Knight Capital Group, which recently agreed to be bought for $1.4 billion by Getco Holding Co, has struck a deal to sell its credit-brokerage unit to Stifel Financial, according to a person familiar with the matter.

** HEWLETT-PACKARD CO, Friday close $19.20

HP announced the launch of a $169 tablet powered by the Android operating system, a centerpiece of the company’s effort to expand in mobile devices and reduce its dependence on the shrinking personal computer market.

** H.J. HEINZ. Friday close $72.66

A U.S. judge has extended a freeze on a Swiss account linked to possible insider trading in Heinz’s call options just before the ketchup maker agreed to be bought by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc and Brazilian investment firm 3G Capital.

** JOHNSON & JOHNSON, Friday close $76.25

Johnson & Johnson said on Friday the U.S. Justice Department is investigating the company’s marketing practices related to the hip-replacement product it recalled in 2010 over safety concerns.

** VIVUS, Friday close $12.58, up 0.5 pct aftermarket

European regulators rejected a diet pill from Vivus for a second time and said the obesity treatment would not be approved unless the U.S. company conducted a large trial to prove its heart safety. The news sent shares in Vivus down more than 5 percent on Friday.

Vivus is scheduled to report fourth-quarter earnings and the first full quarter of sales from it’s diet pill Qsymia on Monday.

** CME Group Inc, Friday close $58.31

CME Group Inc is said to have approached Deutsche Boerse AG to consider merger talks, Bloomberg tweeted on Monday.

** OFFICE DEPOT INC, Friday close $4.21, up 1 pct aftermarket

** OFFICEMAX INC, Friday close $12.27

Office Depot, which will acquire rival OfficeMax, said the chief executives of both companies would be appointed co-CEOs of the combined entity.

Office Depot said on Friday that following talks with the largest holder of its common stock, Starboard Value LP, it is extending the deadline for nominating candidates for its board at its annual meeting.

** DIRECTV, Friday close $49.09

** KKR & Co, Friday close $17.75

French media group Vivendi SA is likely to close a deal in the coming weeks to sell a stake in Brazilian telecoms unit GVT, after getting the government’s nod to close a deal with DirecTV or a group of funds led by KKR, newspaper Folha de S.Paulo reported on Sunday.

** LOCKHEED MARTIN CORP, Friday close $88.12

This year’s second grounding of Lockheed Martin’s F-35 warplane, plus looming U.S. defence cuts, will complicate a push this week by Lockheed and U.S. officials to convince Australian lawmakers and generals to stick to a plan to buy 100 of the jets.

** BLACKROCK INC, Friday close $240.87

BlackRock, the world’s largest money manager, has won approval from the U.S. securities regulator to list a copper-backed exchange-traded fund, potentially moving ahead of JPMorgan whose listing of a similar product has been delayed by industry objections.

** CHEVRON CORP, Friday close $115.96

The U.S.-based Chevron became the latest in a string of oil majors that have decided to invest in Australian shale, announcing on Monday that it has bought interest in two gas blocks in the Cooper Basin from Beach Energy. (Compiled by Chandni Doulatramani in Bangalore)

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