(For more market insights, including options activity, click on ; for the Day Ahead newsletter link.reuters.com/mex49s; for the Morning News Call newsletter, link.reuters.com/muh64v) U.S. stocks eased on Tuesday before remarks by key Federal Reserve officials, which investors will scrutinize for hints when the U.S. central bank might start curtailing its stimulus program. The Dow Jones industrial average was down 0.41 percent, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index 0.42 percent and the Nasdaq Composite Index 0.20 percent.
** VANDA PHARMACEUTICALS INC, $12.68, up 86.8 pct (1:03 p.m. ET)
An experimental sleep disorder drug made by the company is safe and effective enough to warrant approval, a U.S. Food and Drug Administration review found.
** SAREPTA THERAPEUTICS INC, $14.02, down 61.5 pct (1:02 p.m. ET)
Sarepta was advised by the U.S. health regulator to find new ways to test its flagship treatment for a rare muscle disorder.
** DISH NETWORK CORP, $48.75, up 3 pct (10:02 a.m. ET)
The company posted quarterly results that beat Wall Street estimates as it added 35,000 pay-TV subscribers, far exceeding expectations.
** TESLA MOTORS INC, $138, down 4.7 pct (11:46 a.m. ET)
The company got more bad news this week following the third fire in its Model S electric sedan as actor George Clooney complained about being stuck on the side of the road in the Roadster sports car he used to own.
** HARVEST NATURAL RESOURCES INC, $3.14, down 29 pct (12:46 p.m. ET)
The oil and gas producer said near-term liquidity constraints could hurt its ability to negotiate best possible terms to sell itself or its assets.
** PERNIX THERAPEUTICS HOLDINGS INC, $2.09, down 25 pct (11:43 a.m. ET)
The specialty pharmaceutical company posted a wider-than-expected quarterly loss as sales were hurt by the discontinuation of certain branded and generic cough and cold products that had been recalled.
The company also lowered its full-year revenue forecast to $80 million from $90-$100 million.
** INTEROIL CORP, $80.60, up 20 pct (11:39 a.m. ET)
The Papua New Guinea-focused oil and gas company said it is in the final stages of talks with “a number of supermajors” for a deal to jointly develop its Elk and Antelope natural gas fields in the country, and could select a partner before year end. U.S. oil company ExxonMobil Corp is one of the suitors.
** LMI AEROSPACE INC, $12.02, down 19 pct (11.12 a.m. ET)
The supplier of aerospace products reported third-quarter results that missed analysts’ estimates due to lower orders in its engineering services business. The company also forecast full-year revenue to of $421-$421.5 million, lower than analysts’ expectation of $433.1 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Wells Fargo Securities cut its rating on the stock of the company to “market perform” from “outperform”.
** ON TRACK INNOVATIONS LTD, $2.11, up 17 pct (11:35 a.m. ET)
The maker of near-field communication equipment said its unit got orders totaling more than $1 million from customers, which included a global supply chain company.
** HOLOGIC INC, $19.32, down 16 pct (10:03 a.m. ET)
The maker of medical diagnostic products forecast weaker-than-expected results for the first quarter and full year on Monday. The company also reported fourth-quarter revenue that fell below analysts’ estimates due to lower sales of its 2D mammography systems, menorrhagia NovaSure systems and some legacy diagnostic products.
Hologic announced a new $250 million stock repurchase program.
William Blair & Co, RBC Capital Markets and Canaccord Genuity cut their ratings on the company’s stock, while Jefferies & Co, ISI Group and Cantor Fitzgerald cut their price targets.
** US AIRWAYS GROUP INC, $23.14, down 0.5 pct (2:06 p.m. ET)
** JETBLU AIRWAYS CORP, $8.15, up 6 pct
** AMERICAN AIRLINES INC, $11.40, up 20 pct
** DELTA AIR LINES INC, $28.14, up 2 pct
** ALASKA AIR GROUP, $75.18, up 2 pct
US Airways and American Airlines have agreed to give up landing spots and gates at several U.S. airports to win U.S. antitrust approval for their proposed merger, the Department of Justice said on Tuesday.
** EAGLE BULK SHIPPING INC, $4.60, down 4.7 pct (11:36 p.m. ET)
** GENCO SHIPPING AND TRADING LTD, $2.82, down 8 pct
** DRYSHIPS INC, $3.08, down 2.3 pct
** STAR BULK CARRIERS CORP, $8.17, down 3 pct
** BALTIC TRADING LTD, $4.89, down 2.5 pct
The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, which gauges the cost of shipping commodities such as iron ore, cement, grain, coal and fertilizer, fell for a fifth straight day as demand for capesize and panamax weakened further.
** GALECTIN THERAPEUTICS INC, $7.83, down 12 pct (12:14 p.m. ET)
The drugmaker reported a larger-than-expected quarterly loss, hurt by a non-cash charge related to stock compensation and increased administrative expenses.
** HANWHA SOLARONE CO LTD, $4.47, down 12 pct (01:30 p.m. ET)
The China-based solar panel maker posted a bigger loss for the third quarter, partly due to higher costs.
** DIGITAL ALLY INC, $8.04, down 11 pct (10:27 a.m. ET)
The company, which makes video surveillance products, posted a surprise quarterly loss.
** COMBIMATRIX CORP, $2.59, up 5.7 pct (1:04 p.m. ET)
The company said it signed an agreement with health insurers Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City for coverage of its diagnostic laboratory services.
** MITEL NETWORKS, $7.28, up 6.7 pct (12:21 p.m. ET)
Analysts at Canaccord Genuity raised their price target on the company’s stock, saying the acquisition of Astra Technologies Ltd expands Mitel’s geographic and customer footprints and offers significant cost synergies.
Internet phone and video-conferencing services provider Mitel said on Monday it would buy smaller rival Aastra for C$392 million to expand in Europe.
** AMEDISYS INC, $14.10, down 19 pct (10:06 a.m. ET)
The home healthcare provider reported a quarterly loss, mainly due to a $150 million charge for the tentative settlement of an investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice.
** MOTORCAR PARTS OF AMERICA, $15.84, up 20 pct (11:23 a.m. ET)
The auto parts maker reported second-quarter results above analysts’ expectations due to strong demand for rotating electrical products and other non-discretionary parts, and said it expects its wheel hub assembly business to boost sales in the second half of its fiscal year.
** HEARTLAND EXPRESS INC, $16.13, up 13 pct (10:08 a.m. ET)
The short-to-medium haul truckload carrier late on Monday said it acquired Seattle-based Gordon Trucking Inc in a deal valued at about $300 million.
** RACKSPACE HOSTING INC, $44.53, down 10 pct (10:09 a.m. ET)
The online storage space leasing company on Monday reported a third-quarter profit that fell 40 percent to $16 million as costs rose.
Rackspace’s margins and return on invested capital (ROIC)-- which shows how well a company is using its money to generate returns -- continued to grind downward as the company increases investment to restore top-line momentum, Evercore Group LLC analyst Jonathan Schildkraut said in a note.
Schildkraut cut his price target on the stock to $52.50 from $56.
** PERION NETWORK LTD, $12.18, up 19 pct (10:10 a.m. ET)
The digital media company posted a third-quarter profit way above Wall Street estimates and forecast full-year profit largely above expectations. Revenue in the quarter ended Sept. 30 rose 58 percent, helped by sales in its search business.
** ATHLON ENERGY INC, $33.25, up 15 pct (10.45 a.m. ET)
The oil and gas producer reported a higher-than-expected third-quarter profit late on Monday as its revenue increased 110 percent to $88.4 million from a year earlier. The company said it expects to drill 169 gross operated vertical wells, eight more than the company’s previous outlook.
** STR HOLDINGS INC, $1.96, down 11 pct (10:25 a.m. ET)
The struggling solar components maker said it has idled a leased facility in China to conserve cash and would also try to outsource encapsulant production to one or more China-based manufacturers, even as it continues to explore strategic alternatives. The company, which reduced its headcount at its Connecticut plants in the third quarter, also said it plans to halt production at its Johor, Malaysia plant by the first quarter of 2014.
** YINGLI GREEN ENERGY HOLDING, $6.23, down 10 pct (10:13 a.m. ET)
** RENESOLA LTD, $4.82. down 3.6 pct (10:40 a.m. ET)
** JINKOSOLAR HOLDINGS, $27.34, down 5.4 pct (11:40 a.m. ET)
The company posted a narrower third-quarter loss as lower costs boosted margins and the slide in panel prices came to a halt. Yingli’s U.S.-listed shares, however, fell 8 percent in trading before the bell as the numbers failed to impress investors who had bid up the stock in the days before the company reported results.
** CALIFORNIA FIRST NATIONAL BANCORP, $16.48, down 9 pct (1:40 p.m. ET)
The bank announced a significant reduction in its annual cash dividend on Monday, slashing its payout to 40 cents per share from $2.20 per share it paid in 2012.
“In light of opportunities to expand the business, the Board of Directors believes that it is appropriate to return the amount of distributions to a normalized level,” the company said.
* ASSURED GUARANTY LTD, $23.57, up 8.5 pct (10:41 a.m. ET)
The bond insurer reported higher-than-expected third-quarter profit as it earned higher gains from credit derivatives and incurred lower expenses.
** BITAUTO HOLDINGS, $27.04, up 8.5 pct (11:18 a.m. ET)
Brokerage Oppenheimer & Co raised its price target on the China-based company’s stock to $30 from $20 on Monday, citing higher confidence in the company’s performance following its third-quarter results a week earlier.
BitAuto, through its websites, lists prices of new and used cars sold at dealerships around China.
** CHINA GREEN AGRICULTURE INC, $4.22, down 7.5 pct (11:30 a.m. ET)
The Chinese fertilizer producer cut its profit forecast for fiscal 2014 ending June 30. It expects a profit of $1.13-$1.19 per share, down from its previous forecast of $1.45-$1.56 per share.
** AECOM TECHNOLOGY CORP, $29.05, down 7 pct (10:24 a.m. ET)
The construction technology company reported a fourth-quarter profit below Wall Street expectations and forecast full-year earnings way below estimates.
** AROTECH CORP, $2.11, up 6.5 pct (1:08 p.m. ET)
The defense and security products and services company reported a 73 percent rise in net profit for the third quarter, helped by higher margins. Its revenue rose 8.2 percent.
The company also raised its full-year revenue forecast to $89-$90 million from $87-$89 million.
** HILLTOP HOLDINGS INC, $18.18, up 5.3 pct (10:57 a.m. ET)
The financial holding company reported a higher-than-expected third-quarter profit as it earned higher interest income and kept aside less money to cover bad loans.
** E-HOUSE CHINA HOLDINGS LTD $9.93, up 5 pct (11:05 a.m. ET)
Goldman Sachs upgraded the China-based real estate services company’s stock to “buy” from “neutral”, theflyonthewall.com reported.
** CIMATRON LTD, $7.35, up 5 pct (10:34 a.m. ET)
The Israel-based company, which provides software for the tooling industry, reported a 45 percent jump in quarterly profit and a 9 percent rise in revenue. (link.reuters.com/zaj64v)
** POWER SOLUTIONS INTERNATIONAL INC, $65.00, up 3.4 pct (10:35 a.m. ET)
The maker of alternative-fuel and conventional power systems late on Monday reported a 25 percent rise in third-quarter revenue to $64.6 million due to increased demand for the company’s heavy-duty power generation systems.
** VIASAT INC, $61.885, down 4 pct (10:40 a.m. ET)
The wireless communications provider on Monday posted second-quarter results above analysts’ estimates.
However, the company’s results were “slightly disappointing as net subscriber adds were a bit light and churn a bit heavy,” Oppenheimer & Co analyst Yair Reiner said in a note.
Churn rate is a percentage of subscribers to a service that discontinue their subscription to that service in a given time period.
** NRG ENERGY INC, $27.32, down 2.5 pct (10:11 a.m. ET)
The power company narrowed its adjusted core earnings forecast for 2013 and 2014. NRG Energy said it expects to generate $2,550-$2,600 million in adjusted EBITDA this year, down from its previous forecast of $2,550-$2,700 million. (r.reuters.com/mah64v)
** D.R. HORTON INC, $18.55, up 2.8 pct (10:12 a.m. ET)
The company said home sales picked up in October as mortgage rates eased from two-year highs and the effects of policy paralysis in Washington faded.
** T-MOBILE US INC, $26.11, down 3 pct (10:13 a.m. ET)
The mobile service provider announced on Monday a stock offering that could bring it almost $2 billion for spectrum purchases.
** SOLTA MEDICAL INC, $1.99, up 8.7 pct (10:19 a.m. ET)
The company is exploring a sale due to falling profits from its medical equipment to remove fat and improve the appearance of a person’s skin and pressure from activist investor Voce Capital Management LLC.
** EMULEX CORP, $7.87, up 4 pct (10:18 a.m. ET)
The network equipment maker will buy $200 million of its shares and reconstitute its board, following pressure from two of its major shareholders. Activist hedge fund Starboard Value LP and Altai Capital had been agitating to include shareholder advocates on the Emulex board.
** WESTERN REFINING INC, $36.21, up 9 pct (10:19 a.m. ET)
** NORTHERN TIER ENERGY LP, $23.88, up 3 pct
Western Refining said it would buy a controlling stake in Northern Tier for about $775 million to add refining capacity with direct access to cheap crude oil.
** JOS. A. BANK CLOTHIERS INC, $50.13, up 3 pct (10:19 a.m. ET)
The apparel retailer forecast current-quarter adjusted profit ahead of estimates as its promotions worked well with customers. The company also said it expects its gross profit margin rate to increase in the third quarter.
Jos. A. Bank offered to buy larger rival Men’s Wearhouse Inc last month for about $2.3 billion in cash.
** SOTHEBY‘S, $52.26, up 2.4 pct (10:24 a.m. ET)
The auction house reported better-than-expected quarterly results, helped by increases in private sale commissions and auction commission revenues.
** VODAFONE GROUP PLC, $36.71, up 1 pct (10:25 a.m. ET)
Britain’s Vodafone will spend 7 billion pounds ($11 billion) - more than expected, earlier than expected - to increase the speed and capacity of its networks and reverse a record fall in revenues resulting from its struggling European business.
The company also said it will look at listing its Indian unit once it resolves a more than $2 billion tax dispute with the country’s government.
** FUEL TECH INC, $5.32, up 12 pct (10:26 a.m. ET)
The company late on Monday reported third-quarter results that beat analysts’ estimates as sales at its air pollution control business rose 52 percent.
** NEWS CORP, $16.93, down 3 pct (10:27 a.m. ET)
Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp reported a steeper than expected 3 percent decline in revenue in its first quarter as a standalone company, as weakness at its Australian newspapers took its toll.
** DEAN FOODS CO, $18.50, down 6 pct (9:34 a.m. ET)
The top U.S. dairy producer forecast a current-quarter profit below analysts’ estimates after reporting lower-than-expected third-quarter earnings due to increasing competition and falling volumes.
The company forecast current-quarter adjusted earnings of 17-23 cents per share, below the average analyst estimate of 28 cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
** QUICKLOGIC CORP, $2.97, down 10 pct (09:38 a.m. ET)
The chipmaker priced its public offering of 7.6 million newly issued shares of common stock at $2.90 per share.
* VIPSHOP HOLDINGS LTD, $79.34, up 8.2 pct (11:34 a.m. ET)
The China-based online discount retailer reported third-quarter revenue that beat analysts’ estimates, driven by growth in the number of active customers and total orders.
GLOBAL BRASS AND COPPER HOLDINGS INC, $18, down 5 pct (1:37 p.m. ET)
The company, which makes specialized copper and brass products, reported a smaller-than-expected third-quarter profit, hurt mainly by a drop in metal prices.
** COOPER TIRE & RUBBER CO $23.42, down 3.7 pct (11:28 a.m. ET)
The company said on Tuesday it filed an appeal with the Delaware Supreme Court to seek a reversal of ruling issued by a lower court, in a case it filed against Apollo Tyres on Oct. 4.
A Delaware Chancery Court judge ruled on Friday that Apollo Tyres did not breach its obligation to close its $2.5 billion buyout of Cooper Tire last month as originally agreed.
** SYMANTEC CORP, $22.44, down 3.3 pct (09:32 a.m. ET)
Macquarie Equities Research cut its rating on the anti-virus software maker’s stock to “neutral” from “outperform”, according to theflyonthewall.com.
** BOOZ ALLEN HAMILTON HOLDING CORP, $16.94, down 3.4 pct (9:38 a.m. ET)
The management and technology consulting services provider late on Monday announced a secondary public offering of 10 million shares of Class A stock by an affiliate of Carlyle Group LP.
** GLAXOSMITHKLINE, $52.21, down 1.5 pct (10:00 a.m. ET)
An experimental GlaxoSmithKline drug, designed to fight heart disease in a new way, failed to meet its main goal in a major late-stage clinical study, dealing a blow to one of the company’s biggest new treatment hopes.
** ACHILLION PHARMACEUTICALS INC, $2.61, up 4 pct (11:48 a.m. ET)
The company reported a narrower-than-expected quarterly loss on lower operating expenses.
** TATA MOTORS LTD, $28.25, down 3.5 pct (10:11 a.m. ET)
Car sales in India are expected to fall in the current financial year that ends in March, an industry body said, marking a second straight year of decline, as high interest rates and a slowing economy force consumers to delay purchases.
** CELLCOM ISRAEL, $12.34, down 2 pct (10:43 a.m. ET)
Israel’s largest mobile phone operator, reported a 58 percent drop in quarterly profit due to higher financing expenses and lower revenue stemming from stiff competition that has eroded calling prices.
** YELP INC, $65.01, up 3.5 pct (11:11 a.m. ET)
Brokerage Jefferies & Co raised its price target on the consumer reviews website's stock to $80 from $50, according to Marketwatch.com. Jefferies said the company's "depth and penetration" of content is very hard to replicate, the website reported. (link.reuters.com/rej64v)
** MEN‘S WEARHOUSE INC, $47.50, up 3 pct (12:45 p.m. ET)
Hedge fund Eminence Capital LLC said on Tuesday the retailer would explore strategic options, including a merger with Jos. A. Bank Clothiers Inc.
** CLEAN HARBORS INC, $54.97, down 3 pct (11:00 a.m. ET)
Analysts at Credit Suisse downgraded the company’s stock to “neutral” from “outperform”, after Clean Harbors lowered its adjusted core earnings forecast for this year, primarily due to delayed opening of the Ruth Lake lodge in Canada. Clean Harbors provides waste management, lodging and other services to the energy industry.
** VERMILLION INC, $2.5, up 1 pct (1:05 p.m. ET)
A new study of the diagnostics company’s ovarian tumor triage test OVA1 showed positive performance in detection of early-stage ovarian cancer.
** DENDREON CORP, $2.5, up 0.2 pct (1:04 p.m. ET)
The biotechnology company said it would restructure to cut costs after reporting another quarter of weak sales of its prostate cancer vaccine, Provenge. (Compiled by Natalie Grover; Editing by Maju Samuel)