March 4 (Reuters) - Some U.S. stocks on the move on Monday:
Wall Street was little changed as investors took worries about global growth and the euro zone debt crisis as opportunities to take a breather from equities that have risen near record highs. The Dow Jones industrial average was down 0.09 percent, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index was up 0.02 percent and the Nasdaq Composite Index up 0.04 percent.
** THERAVANCE INC, $23.69, up 13 pct (1258 ET)
Shares of Theravance rose after a brokerage said a positive outcome for the company’s respiratory drug could lead to a takeover of the company, which is one-quarter owned by GlaxoSmithKline Plc.
The stock, trading almost two times its average 10-day volume, was one of the top percentage gainers on the Nasdaq at 1259 ET.
** ZYNGA INC, $3.62, up 6 pct (1136 ET)
The social gaming company’s acquisition of OMGPop, maker of the popular “Draw Something” game, may finally bear fruit. OMGPop may have another hit game on its hands, Needham & Co analyst Sean McGowan said.
Zynga bought OMGPOP for about $200 million in March 2012 to expand its games on mobile devices and Facebook Inc.
** HESS CORP, $69.35, up 4 pct (1200 ET)
The oil and gas company will exit its retail, energy marketing and energy trading businesses following pressure from its third-largest shareholder - activist investor Elliott Management - to break up the company.
** OUTDOOR CHANNEL HOLDINGS INC, $8.68, up 15 pct (1201 ET)
The operator of Outdoor Channel -- a cable network focused on hunting, fishing, and other outdoor activities -- received an unsolicited offer from Kroenke Sports & Entertainment LLC for $8.75 per share. This represents a nearly 16 percent premium to Outdoor’s Friday share close and values the company at about $227 million. The shares jumped to their highest in more than five years, making them the top percentage gainer on the Nasdaq on Monday morning.
The stock, trading more than nine times its average 10-day volume, was one of the top percentage gainers on the Nasdaq at 1214 ET.
** MGIC INVESTMENT CORP, $4.27, up 13 pct (1201 ET)
The mortgage insurer’s stock continued its rally after gaining more than a fourth of its value on Friday. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods raised its price target on the MGIC stock to $4 from $1, while Susquehanna Financial Group reinstated its coverage on the stock with a “neutral” rating.
The stock was trading almost two times its average 10-day volume.
** BARNES & NOBLE INC $16.40, up 5 pct (1202 ET)
** MICROSOFT CORP, $27.86, down 0.30 pct (1203 ET)
A Barron’s article said that Microsoft could bid for the largest U.S. bookstore chain at $25 a share, or $1.75 billion, jump-starting Microsoft’s retail strategy and giving it control of 677 bookstores.
** BOYD GAMING CORP, $7.10, up 10 pct (1125 ET)
The casino operator reported fourth-quarter results that missed Wall Street estimates but said it will sell its Echelon development on the Las Vegas strip to Genting Group for $350 million in cash.
Analysts at RBC Capital Markets said in a note that the transaction will give Boyd Gaming additional flexibility to reduce debt and focus on core operations.
The stock, trading more than two times its average 10-day volume, was one of the top percentage gainers on the New York Stock Exchange at 1240 ET.
** STRATASYS INC, $68.36, up 6 pct (1203 ET)
The 3D printer maker’s fourth-quarter revenue handily beat analysts’ estimates and the company forecast 2013 revenue above Wall Street expectations.
The stock was trading more than two and a half times its average 10-day volume.
** AGRIUM INC, $101.96, down 2 pct (1213 ET)
The war of words between fertilizer maker Agrium and its biggest shareholder, Jana Partners, escalated on Monday with Agrium slamming the hedge fund’s plan to split the company in a letter to investors ahead of its annual meeting next month.
** TUESDAY MORNING CORP, $7.59, down 15 pct (1204 ET)
The home decor retailer said its chief executive Brady Churches has resigned. The company named Michael Rouleau as interim CEO.
The stock, trading more than four times its average 10-day volume, was one of the top percentage losers on the Nasdaq at 1215 ET.
** HECLA MINING CO, $4.10, down 12 pct (1204 ET)
** AURIZON MINES LTD, $4.38, up 4 pct (1204 ET)
** ALAMOS GOLD INC, $14.33, up 4 pct (1204 ET)
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.
Hecla’s stock was trading nearly two times its average 10-day volume.
** VEOLIA ENVIRONMENT, $13,16 ,up 5.3 pct (1132 ET)
Shares of the world’s largest private supplier of drinking water touched their nine-month high on Monday as the French company continued to trade at a high value following its results posted late last week.
The stock was trading nearly two times its average 10-day volume.
** FERRO CORP, $6.76, up 30 pct (1205 ET)
Chemical maker A. Schulman offered to buy Ferro for $563 million nearly three weeks after being rebuffed by its rival, which makes products used in computers to mobile devices.
Ferro’s stock was trading more than five times its average 10-day volume.
** NUSTAR ENERGY LP, $47.83, down 5 pct (1056 ET)
Analysts at Credit Suisse cut their rating on the pipeline operator’s stock to “underperform” from “neutral” after TexStar Midstream Services LP terminated NuStar’s proposed acquisition of some of its natural gas liquids assets. NuStar may be forced to cut its distribution due to the termination of the deal, the analysts said. [ID: nWNAB00XUH]
The stock was trading about three times its average 10-day volume.
** STANDARD MOTOR PRODUCTS INC, $26.20, up 5 pct (1100 ET)
The autoparts maker reported a 10 percent jump in fourth-quarter sales and its quarterly profit beat analysts’ estimates as the company expanded its production in low-cost countries and reduced costs.
** NQ MOBILE INC, $7.91, up 15 pct (1206 ET)
** AMERICA MOVIL, $20.60, down 1 pct (1206 ET)
Mobile internet services provider NQ Mobile signed an agreement with America Movil to offer its mobile antivirus software to the Latin American telecom company’s subscribers in 18 countries.
NQ mobile’s stock, trading almost three and a half times its average 10-day volume, was one of the top percentage gainers on the New York Stock Exchange at 1240 ET.
** APPLE INC, $422.60, down 2 pct (1206 ET)
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.
** ASSURED GUARANTY LTD, $19.26, up 2 pct (1207 ET)
** MBIA INC, $10.64, up 3 pct (1207 ET)
** JPMORGAN CHASE AND CO, $48.70, down 0.42 pct (1207 ET)
** BANK OF AMERICA CORP, $11.27, down 1 pct (1207 ET)
Shares of bond insurers, including Assured Guaranty and MBIA, rose after Credit Suisse Group AG settled a lawsuit brought by Ambac Financial Group Inc over misrepresentations on mortgage-backed securities that Ambac insured in 2007, according to court documents and a source familiar with the matter.
The lawsuit is similar to those filed by MBIA and Assured Guaranty against banks like JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America.
** BROADWIND ENERGY, $4.38, up 14 pct (1120 ET)
Shares of the wind turbines maker rallied for the fourth consecutive day after the company forecast higher-than-expected sales for 2013. The stock has risen 26.5 percent in the last three trading days. The stock, trading more than two and a half times its average 10-day volume, was one of the top percentage gainers on the Nasdaq at 1214 ET.
** CENTRAL EUROPEAN DISTRIBUTION CORP, $0.69, up 15 pct (1208 ET)
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.
** RADIAN GROUP INC, $9.77, up 6.5 pct (1208 ET)
Shares of the mortgage insurer touched their highest level since November 2010 after brokerage Keefe, Bruyette & Woods upgraded the company’s stock to “outperform” from “market perform”.
Radian announced a capital raise last week which the brokerage believes will help bolster the company’s capital and liquidity position. “The company should have sufficient capital to deal with its legacy risk,” KBW said in a note to clients.
** PENN VIRGINIA CORP, $4.10, up 1 pct (1145 ET)
Analysts at Wells Fargo started the oil and gas company with an “outperform” rating, saying Penn Virginia is likely to sell its non-core assets.
They said the sale would fund drilling and acquisition in the core oil-rich Eagle Ford shale in Texas, where the company plans to spend 88 percent of its capital budget this year. “Given established gas and liquids production ... (the company) could be attractive to financial buyers or perhaps, MLPs.”
** GMX RESOURCES INC, $2.62, down 15 pct (1209 ET)
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.
The stock, trading almost two and a half times its average 10-day volume, was one of the top percentage losers on the New York Stock Exchange at 1250 ET.
** SELECT COMFORT CORP, $17.29, down 16 pct (1209 ET)
The specialty mattress maker said it experienced slower sales since Feb. 1, hurt by changes in its advertising strategy. The company is making corrections to its advertising strategy and its near-term expenses to address the issue, Chief Executive Shelly Ibach said in a statement.
The stock, trading almost four-and-a-half times its average 10-day volume, was one of the top percentage losers on the Nasdaq at 1215 ET.
** INTERMUNE INC, $9.65, up 5 pct (1209 ET)
The drugmaker reported on Friday that it reached an agreement with Italian health regulators on the pricing and reimbursement of its lung disease drug, Esbriet, the company said in a regulatory filing on Monday.
InterMune will launch Esbriet in Italy after its approval is published in the Official Gazette -- which is expected to take six to twelve weeks.
** ATLANTIC POWER CORP, $6.15, down 14 pct (1210 ET)
Atlantic Power’s shares continued their fall as a dividend cut announced by the company on Thursday prompted several brokerages to reduce their price targets on the stock on Monday. The stock was one of the top percentage losers on the New York Stock Exchange in morning trading. TD Securities, RBC Capital Markets and CIBC cut their price target on the stock.
The company, which generates and sells electric power to utility companies in Canada and the United States, said it will cut its annual dividend by 65 percent to 40 Canadian cents per share.
The stock, trading nearly two times its average 10-day volume, was the top percentage loser on the New York Stock Exchange at 1253 ET.
** DRAGONWAVE INC, $1.87, down 22 pct (1210 ET)
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.
The stock was trading almost seven times its average 10-day volume.
** PRANA BIOTECHNOLOGY LTD, $2.76, up 13 pct (1210 ET)
The Australian drug developer said on Sunday it would present new data at an upcoming medical meeting showing its experimental drug PBT2 reduces brain cell damage caused by a particular protein associated with Alzheimer’s disease. The data will be presented at the 11th International Conference on Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease in Florence, Italy, from March 6 to 10.
The stock was one of the top percentage gainers on the Nasdaq at 1240 ET.
** FRANCE TELECOM, $10.13, up 5 pct (1211 ET)
Morgan Stanley analysts raised their rating on the French company’s stock to “overweight” from “underweight”, citing a low valuation, better cost control and possible state fibre network subsidies.
** SINCLAIR BROADCAST GROUP INC, $17.51, up 10 pct (12:35 ET)
The U.S. TV station owner’s deal to buy the broadcast assets of 18 television stations owned by Barrington Broadcasting Group and some Cox Media stations last week signal the company’s expansion in small markets, Moody’s Investor Service said. “Transactions are credit positive as they enhance diversity while maintaining pro forma leverage,” Moody’s said.
Evercore Partners, which has an “overweight” rating on Sinclair’s shares, raised its price target to $19 from $17. The stock, trading more than one-and-a-half times its average 10-day volume, was one of the top percentage gainers on the Nasdaq at 1255 ET.
** GROUPON INC, $5.45, up 7 pct (13:03 ET)
Shares continued to rally for the second successive trading day after Groupon fired Andrew Mason as CEO on Thursday, ousting a co-founder who captured headlines with his quirky style but failed to reverse a crumbling share price or stop a gradual erosion of its main daily deals business.
The company should look a lot trimmer under its new CEO, with a sharply reduced international arm and a more focused business, analysts and investors said.
** MBIA INC, $12.53, up 21 pct (1318 ET)
** BANK OF AMERICA CORP, $11.25, down 0.80 pct (1319 ET)
The bond insurer won a lawsuit involving Bank of America on whether it was appropriate for the company to split its municipal bond insurance business from its structured finance unit. (Compiled by Chandni Doulatramani)