March 4, 2013 / 1:38 PM / in 5 years

MARKET PULSE-Hess, Ferro, Apple, Transocean, Berkshire

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March 4 (Reuters) - Some U.S. stocks to watch on Monday:


U.S. stock index futures fell as worries about the prospects for global economic growth prompted investors to take a step back from equities that are within reach of record highs. S&P 500 futures were down 4.7 points, while futures for the Dow Jones were down 55 points and the Nasdaq 100 down 12.75 points.

** TRANSOCEAN LTD, Friday close $52.15, up 3 pct premarket

The world’s largest offshore drilling contractor said its board recommended restarting dividend payments, more than a month after activist investor Carl Icahn pushed for a payout.

The company reported on Friday a rise in revenue and a higher-than-expected profit for the fourth quarter as more of its fleet was working, compared with a year earlier.

** HESS CORP, Friday close $66.54, up 6 pct premarket

Hess will exit its retail, energy marketing, and energy trading businesses following pressure from an activist investor to break up the company.

** HECLA MINING CO, Friday close $4.64, down 10 pct premarket

** AURIZON MINES LTD, Friday close $4.22, up 8 pct premarket

** ALAMOS GOLD INC, Friday close $13.70

U.S. silver miner Hecla will buy Aurizon Mines for about C$796 million ($774 million) to gain control of a gold mine in Quebec, nearly a month after the Canadian company rejected an unsolicited offer from Alamos Gold.

** A. SCHULMAN INC, Friday close $31.12

** FERRO CORP, Friday close $5.20, up 28 pct premarket

Chemical maker A. Schulman offered to buy peer Ferro for $563 million in cash and stock to add products used in markets such as construction, automotive, appliances, electronics and household furnishings.

** APPLE INC, Friday close $430.47, down 0.34 pct premarket

Apple had a major setback in its ongoing mobile patents battle with Samsung Electronics on Friday, as a federal judge slashed a $1.05 billion jury award by more than 40 percent and set a new trial to determine damages.

** BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY, Friday close $102.05, down 1.6 pct premarket

Warren Buffett’s stance against paying Berkshire Hathaway shareholders a dividend looks to be on thin ice. In his annual letter to shareholders the Sage of Omaha defended his long-held objection to cash payouts. But the firm performance over the past four years has been disappointing and Buffett reckons it won’t match its glory days again. That’s likely to increase the chances of a cash payout, whether from Buffett or his successor.

** BANK OF AMERICA, Friday close $11.34


The Federal Reserve Bank of New York last week made public a mortgage-securities settlement with Bank of America that could bolster the BofA’s case against AIG over claims on the assets.

** J.C. PENNEY CO INC, Friday close $17.69, down 1 pct premarket

** MACY‘S INC, Friday close $40.68

J.C. Penney chief Ron Johnson knew before doing a deal with Martha Stewart that it would create a conflict with rival Macy‘s, which already had a relationship with her.

** CONOCOPHILLIPS, Friday close $58.28

ConocoPhillips, which has been looking to sell down its interest in Canada’s oil sands, said that moves by Ottawa to limit foreign investment in that country’s resources have made it more difficult for some buyers.

** AMDOCS, Friday close $36.56

Singapore Telecommunications and Amdocs, a software provider for telecom companies, have opened a development center in Israel as part of SingTel’s investment in new technology.

** ARCHER DANIELS MIDLAND CO, Friday close $31.97

Archer Daniels Midland said it could still make another bid for GrainCorp Ltd, after the Australian grain handler rejected two takeover offers from the giant U.S. agribusiness company.

** ELAN, Friday close $11.46

Irish drugmaker Elan said it will give shareholders 20 percent of the royalty rights for multiple sclerosis drug Tysabri in a bid to stave off an approach for the company by U.S. investment firm Royalty Pharma.

** CHESAPEAKE ENERGY CORP, Friday close $19.67

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has escalated its investigation into Chesapeake Energy and its Chief Executive Aubrey McClendon for a controversial perk that granted him a share in each of the natural gas producer’s wells.

** CENTRAL EUROPEAN DISTRIBUTION CORP, Friday close $0.60, up 7 pct after market

A unit of Russia’s Alfa Group is interested in putting together a consortium to restructure one of the world’s largest vodka producers, Central European Distribution, according to a U.S. securities filing.

** TRANSCANADA CORP, Friday close $46.54, up 2 pct after market

TransCanada shares are expected to get a boost on Monday from a positive U.S. report on the company’s contentious Keystone XL pipeline, as are those of Canadian energy producers under pressure from deeply discounted heavy oil prices.

** UNITED TECHNOLOGIES CORP, Friday close $90.13

Pratt & Whitney, a unit of United Technologies, uncovered a fraudulent scheme of testing engine parts by another unit of United Tech, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday.

** GMX RESOURCES INC, Friday close $3.10

The oil and gas producer said it would fail to make an interest payment on its senior debt, due on Monday, without specifying a reason. It also said that its stock would be delisted from the New York Stock Exchange as its market capitalization was lower than $50 million for a 30-day trading period.

** YINGLI GREEN ENERGY, Friday close $2.40

The solar panel marker is expected to report its sixth straight quarterly loss as a four-year-long slump in panel prices shows no signs of lifting. The company has seen its shipments ramp up rapidly, but analysts say the company is unlikely to turn a profit at current gross margins.

** YPF, Friday close $13.60

The Argentine energy firm, which was nationalized last year, is expected to report earnings for the fourth quarter. YPF’s net profit fell 51 percent in the third quarter from a year earlier as domestic crude prices failed to keep pace with rising production costs. Argentine President Cristina Fernandez seized control of YPF from Repsol in April, accusing the Spanish oil company of investing too little and making Argentina increasingly reliant on pricey fuel imports.

** DRAGONWAVE INC, Friday close $2.39

The telecom network equipment maker said revenue for the fourth quarter would miss its forecast, citing lower sales from the microwave technology business it bought from Nokia Siemens Networks last year.

** FEIHE INTERNATIONAL INC, Friday close $7.01, up 4 pct premarket

Feihe International, the maker of infant formula and milk powders, said it will merge with privately held Diamond Infant Formula Holding Ltd.

Diamond Infant will acquire China’s Feihe for $7.40 per share.

** DEPOMED INC, Friday close $6.53, trading halted

The specialty pharmaceutical company said the Nasdaq halted trading of its stock as U.S. health regulators’ advisory committee is meeting on Monday morning to discuss Depomed’s marketing application for its drug, Sefelsa. The drug aims to reduce severity and frequency of hot flashes during menopause. (Compiled by Chandni Doulatramani)

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