December 3, 2013 / 6:24 PM / in 4 years

MARKET PULSE-Groupon, Herbalife, Xencor, Oncomed, Enteromedics

(For more market insights, including options activity, click on ; for the Day Ahead newsletter; for the Morning News Call newsletter, U.S. stock indexes were down on Tuesday. The Dow Jones industrial average was down 0.72 percent at 15,893.4, the S&P 500 was down 0.50 percent at 1,791.96 and the Nasdaq Composite was down 0.41 percent at 4,028.843.

** APPLE INC, $561.2855, +1.82 pct

UBS upgraded the i-Phone maker’s stock to “buy” from “neutral” and raised its price target to $650 from $540. The brokerage said the company could be a “growth story” in 2014 with potential double-digit profit growth.

** ABERCROMBIE & FITCH CO, $36.16, +6.29 pct

A shareholder of the company called on the teen apparel retailer to replace its chief executive after his contract expires in February.

** GROUPON INC, $9.08, +3.77 pct

The online deal company said Black Friday and Cyber Monday were the two biggest sales days in North America in its history, with billings for the four-day weekend growing nearly 30 percent from a year earlier.

** ONCOMED PHARMACEUTICALS INC, $28.42, +103.00 pct

** CELGENE CORP, $160.35, -1.69 pct

OncoMed said Celgene would develop and market six of its anti-cancer stem cell experimental drugs for an upfront payment of $155 million.

** ENTEROMEDICS INC,$1.92, +40.15 pct

The medical device maker said data from a 18-month study on its experimental device to treat obesity showed durable and safe weight loss in 239 patients. Those treated with EnteroMedics’ VBLOC device lost 13 percent more weight than those in the “sham” control group.

The device aims to block nerves that control digestive function using high-frequency, low-energy electrical impulses affecting the individual’s perception of hunger and fullness.

** YUM BRANDS INC, $75.93, -2.29 pct

The company said November sales at established KFC restaurants in China, its top market, failed to grow despite a successful half-priced chicken promotion, and it forecast a return to earnings per share growth in 2014.

** KRISPY KREME DOUGHNUTS INC, $20.05, -18.33 pct

The doughnut chain forecast fiscal 2015 earnings below analysts’ estimates, saying it expected international franchise same-store sales to remain negative. Krispy Kreme forecast adjusted earnings of 71-76 cents per share for its year ending January 2015. Analysts on average were expecting 77 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

** TESLA MOTORS INC, $142.2, +14.52 pct

The electric-car maker said Germany’s vehicle regulatory agency would pursue “no further measures” after concluding a review of recent Tesla Model S fires in the United States and Mexico.

Morgan Stanley named the stock its top pick.

** ASCENA RETAIL GROUP INC, $21.105, +1.08 pct

The women’s apparel retailer reported a 5 percent rise in first-quarter sales as more customers shopped at its Lane Bryant and Justice brand stores.

** HERBALIFE LTD, $74.84, +4.16 pct

The nutritional products giant said it welcomed the judgment by a Belgian appeal court that its sales model is in full compliance with Belgian law. Herbalife said the judgment overturns a previous ruling by a lower court in response to claims brought by Belgian consumer organization Test-Aankoop that Herbalife was operating a pyramid scheme.

** CONATUS PHARMACEUTICALS INC, $7.4176, +20.81 pct

The biotechnology company said the U.S. health regulator granted an orphan drug status to its experimental drug, emricasan, for the treatment of liver transplant recipients with a type of scarring that could be irreversible and lead to end-stage liver disease.

Orphan status is granted to drugs that treat conditions or diseases that affect fewer than 200,000 people in the United States. The status usually comes with a seven-year marketing exclusivity if the drug is approved for sale.


The company said its experimental irritable bowel syndrome drug, LX1033, failed the main goal of showing improvements in stool consistency over a placebo in an initial mid-stage study. However, there were positive effects on abdominal pain in the treated group that warrant further study, Lexicon said in a statement.

The drug was granted fast-track status by the U.S. health regulator in December last year.

** ONEOK INC, $59.35, +3.63 pct

The natural gas distributor raised its dividend to $2.33 per share for 2014 from $1.52 per share this year, subject to board approval.

** CBOE HOLDINGS INC, $51.49, -2.81 pct

The operator of the biggest U.S. stock-options market reported an 8 percent fall in trading volume in VIX (Volatility Index) futures to 2.5 million contracts. November exchange-wide trading volumes at CFE, a unit of CBOE, totaled about 2.6 million contracts.

** 3D SYSTEMS CORP, $75.57, -1.72 pct

** STRATASYS LTD, $119.89, +0.88 pct

FBR started coverage on shares of the two 3D printer makers with “outperform” rating, according to

** WESTERN GAS PARTNERS LP, $60.77, -4.16 pct

The company, which processes and transports oil and gas, announced on Monday an underwritten public offering of 4.5 million common units. The company said it expected to use the net proceeds from the offering to repay outstanding borrowings under its revolving credit facility.

** THOR INDUSTRIES INC, $52.9, -2.49 pct

The recreational vehicle (RV) maker reported lower-than-expected revenue for the first quarter, partly due to lower sales of towable RVs.

** ROUNDY‘S INC, $8.94, +5.30 pct

The grocer said it would buy 11 Dominick’s Stores from Safeway Inc in a $36 million cash and lease assumption transaction. Roundy’s said the stores would be converted to the Mariano’s banner in the Chicago metropolitan area.

** UNILIFE CORP, $4.7, +13.25 pct

The syringe maker entered into an agreement with Swiss drugmaker Novartis AG for supply of its clinical products for use with one of Novartis’s targeted early-stage pipeline drugs.

Cantor Fitzgerald raised its price target on Unilife’s stock to $8 from $6.

** AK STEEL HOLDING CORP, $5.73, +2.87 pct

BofA Merrill analysts raised their rating on the steel producer’s stock to “neutral” from “underperform,” according to

** QEP RESOURCES INC, $32.87, +1.70 pct

Barclays analysts raised their price target on the oil producer’s stock to $39 from $37, citing the company’s decision to spin off its pipeline business.

QEP said on Monday that it planned to spin off its QEP Field Services division, as well as its 25 percent stake in QEP Midstream Partners LP.

** REX AMERICAN RESOURCES CORP, $37.75, +23.16 pct

The ethanol producer reported higher-than-expected profit for the third quarter as it benefited from recovery in U.S. corn production. The company said its corn pricing fell about 22 percent in the quarter.

** QUICKLOGIC CORP, $3.47, +5.15 pct

Benchmark Co started coverage on the chipmaker’s share with a “speculative buy” rating and a price target of $5.50, saying the company’s new management is likely to tap into more revenue streams.

** FUSION-IO INC, $9.5, -5.09 pct

UBS downgraded the solid-state data storage maker’s stock to “neutral” from “buy,” according to

** GORDMANS STORES INC, $8.65, -8.95 pct

The apparel and home decor retailer forecast current-quarter results far below analysts’ estimates on Monday, saying it expected continued pressure on gross profit margins and additional expenses.

Robert W. Baird & Co downgraded the company’s stock to “neutral” from “outperform” on Tuesday.

** ABBVIE INC, $50.14, +3.62 pct

Goldman Sachs upgraded the drugmaker’s stock to “conviction buy” from “buy,” according to

** ECHO THERAPEUTICS INC, $2.8936, -18.26 pct

The medical device maker filed with U.S. regulators to make an offering of 3.2 million units. The company did not disclose the price at which the units will be offered. Each unit comprises one share of the company’s common stock and a warrant to purchase one share of common stock.

As of Nov. 6, about 10.6 million shares of the company's common stock were outstanding. (

** ROMA FINANCIAL CORP, $20.76, +7.51 pct

The retail banking service provider said Federal Reserve Board has approved bank holding company Investors Bancorp’s proposed acquisition of Roma Financial and its subsidiaries, Roma Bank and RomAsia Bank.

** ENERPLUS CORP, $18.61, +3.82 pct

Several brokerages raised their price targets on the Canadian oil and gas producer’s stock, citing its positive outlook on 2014 production and capital expenditure.

** XENCOR INC, $6.9, +25.45 pct

The drug developer went public on Tuesday after raising about $70 million through its initial public offering of 12.7 million shares.

** BANK OF MONTREAL, $65.86, -4.90 pct

The Canadian bank reported a 28 percent fall in profit at its U.S. Harris Bank unit, citing weaker revenue and higher-than-normal commercial loan loss provisions.

Profit at BMO Capital Markets, the bank’s brokerage unit, dropped 27 percent to C$229 million. Securities gains and stock underwriting fees fell, and trading revenue decreased from a year earlier.

** MECHEL OAO, $2.15, +9.14 pct

The debt-laden Russian miner said on Tuesday it had reached a deal to extend the grace period and maturity of a $1 billion syndicated loan, bringing some relief to talks with its creditors that have unsettled investors.

** ATLANTIC POWER CORP, $3.22, -6.40 pct

BMO Capital analysts downgraded the U.S.-listed stock of the Canadian power company to “underperform” from “market perform” and cut their price target to $3.25 from $4.50, citing weak demand and oversupply in Ontario. The analysts also raised concerns about the company’s free cash flow outlook. “We believe there is a material risk of a dividend cut in the near term. Free cash flow has covered the reduced dividend level this year, but appears to be heading lower,” BMO analysts said in a note.

** FOREST OIL CORP, $4.17, -5.66 pct

The company forecast on Monday natural gas and oil production of 120-130 million cubic feet equivalent per day for 2014 and production expenses of $1.85-$1.95 per thousand cubic feet equivalent.

Simmons & Co analysts said the midpoint of the production outlook was slightly below estimates, while production costs were higher than expected.

** LEIDOS HOLDINGS INC, $42.33, -13.40 pct

The U.S. government IT contractor cut its full-year profit forecast to $0.85-$1.10 per share from $1.80-$2.04 per share, citing challenging market conditions.

** IAO KUN GROUP HOLDING CO LTD, $3, -0.99 pct

The holding company that owns Asia Gaming & Resort Ltd said it had an operating loss for October and November because of a low win rate. As a result, the company was unlikely to achieve its 2013 adjusted income guidance, it said.

** NCR CORP, $32.99, -3.51 pct

The ATM maker said it would buy Digital Insight Corp, a provider of online and mobile banking technology, from private equity firm Thoma Bravo LLC for $1.65 billion to boost its financial services business.


The security systems provider said it received contracts worth $4.3 million from the World Trade Center Facility.

** MICRON TECHNOLOGY INC, $21.68, +1.93 pct

Needham started coverage of the NAND flash memory maker’s stock with a “buy” rating and a price target of $30.

** ENVIVIO INC, $3.01, +4.51 pct

The video delivery company reported a 62 percent rise in third-quarter revenue on Monday, helped by orders from Tier 1 customers.


The solar and LED equipment maker said on Monday that it would offer $125 million worth of senior notes to raise working capital and for general corporate purposes, including acquisitions and capital expenditures.

** MEDALLION FINANCIAL CORP, $16.0201, -8.67 pct

The specialty finance company said it commenced public offering of 2.9 million shares of its common stock. The company said it planned to use the proceeds for lending to and making investments in companies and for other general corporate purposes. (Compiled by Avik Das in Bangalore; Editing by Kirti Pandey)

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