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U.S. stocks edged higher on Friday, boosted by bullish corporate news from the tech sector, though major indexes remained on track to snap a multi-week string of weekly gains. The Dow Jones industrial average was up 0.18 percent at 16,765.15, the S&P 500 was up 0.20 percent at 1,933.88 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 8.50 points, or 0.2 percent, at 4,306.13.
** PENN VIRGINIA CORP, $15.82, +6.46 pct
Analysts at Stifel, Nicolaus & Co raised their rating on the oil and gas producer’s stock to “buy” from “hold”, saying Wednesday’s $313 million convertible offering would allow the company to increase its rig count in Texas’s Eagle Ford shale field to 8 from 6 by the end of the year, improving oil output growth.
** INTEL CORP, $29.95, +7.12 pct
** HEWLETT-PACKARD CO, $34.71, +3.95 pct
Chipmaker Intel on Thursday raised its outlook for the second quarter and the full year, citing stronger-than-expected demand for personal computers used by businesses.
The news also pushed up PC maker HP’s shares to their highest in nearly three years.
** OPENTABLE INC, $103.5142, +46.97 pct
** PRICELINE GROUP INC, $1,202.472, -1.92 pct
** YELP INC, $75.13, +14.11 pct
** GRUBHUB INC, $36.77, +9.27 pct
** ANGIE’S LIST INC, $12.485, +0.52 pct
** GROUPON INC, $6.255, +4.16 pct
** LIVEDEAL INC, $3.96, +4.21 pct
Travel website operator Priceline Group said it would buy OpenTable for $2.6 billion as it looks to add restaurant bookings to its services. The $103 per share offer represents a premium of 46 percent to OpenTable’s Thursday close.
Shares of Yelp, Angie’s List, Groupon, LiveDeal and GrubHub, which have similar services, also moved on the news.
** GNC HOLDINGS INC, $35.68, -3.57 pct
The nutritional supplements retailer said Chief Financial Officer Michael Nuzzo resigned to join a privately funded consumer products company. Nuzzo, who was GNC’s CFO for more than five years, will remain with the company until July 18.
** CASH AMERICA INTERNATIONAL INC, $43.4, -5.20 pct
Brokerage FBR Capital Markets downgraded the pawn lender’s shares to “market perform” and cut its price target to $46 from $48, saying the proposed spin-off of its wholly owned subsidiary, Enova International Inc, will likely weigh on earnings in the near term. Enova operates Cash America’s e-commerce segment.
** GENERAL MOTORS CO, $35.62, +0.28 pct
In a product recall that echoes the one that has plunged the company into a safety crisis, the automaker on Friday said it will recall 511,528 current model Chevrolet Camaro cars, mainly in North America, to correct an issue with the ignition switch.
** FINISAR CORP, $19.495, -22.79 pct
** ALLIANCE FIBER OPTIC PRODUCTS INC, $19.85, -5.75 pct
** OCLARO INC, $2.1, -5.41 pct
The maker of fiber optic components used in network communication equipment, forecast current-quarter profit well below expectations, citing higher capital expenditures in China.
Shares of industry peers Oclaro and Alliance Fiber Optic Products, also moved on the news.
** ONCOMED PHARMACEUTICALS INC, $21.53, -13.53 pct
The company said it halted patient enrollment and dosing in all ongoing early-stage trials of two of its experimental cancer drugs over concerns of bone damage.
** YINGLI GREEN ENERGY HOLD CO LTD, $3.17, +3.93 pct
The Chinese solar company announced the official commissioning of Malaysia’s largest solar plant, powered by over 10 megawatt of Yingli modules. The plant uses more than 40,000 modules to generate about 13.6 million kilowatt hour of clean electricity annually.
** MULTI-COLOR CORP, $37.7, +7.22 pct
The label maker reported better-than-expected profit and revenue, helped by its six acquisitions in the fiscal year ended March 31.
** ICICI BANK LTD, $49.91, -4.24 pct
The Indian lender’s shares fell on risk aversion after crude oil scaled nine-month highs on rising violence in Iraq. Investors said higher crude oil prices, if sustained, would increase India’s subsidy bill and trade deficit, while falls also tracked dampened global equity markets.
** SOUFUN HOLDINGS LTD, $9.17, +3.85 pct
JPMorgan cut its rating on the Chinese real estate portal’s stock to “neutral”, according to Theflyonthewall.com.
** FUSION-IO INC, $9.03, +2.27 pct
Roth Capital Partners started coverage of the solid-state data storage maker’s stock with a “buy” rating and a price target of $12.50. “We foresee improvements for FIO shares as it adjusts to a more efficient go-to-market strategy backed by the launch of its next generation Atomic products,” Michael Staiger analyst at Roth Capital wrote in a note to clients.
** CHINA DIGITAL TV HOLDING CO LTD, $4.33, +14.55 pct
The company, which provides smart cards used in television set-top boxes to cable TV operators in China, said it will combine its broadcasting and video businesses with China-based real estate developer Shanghai Tongda Venture Capital Co Ltd in exchange for a controlling stake in Tongda and 1.15 billion yuan ($185.2 million) in cash.
** TRULIA INC, $41.19, -0.05 pct
The online real estate listing service provider said traffic to its website re-accelerated in May. The consumer side of Trulia’s marketplace reached a record of more than 51 million unique visitors in May.
** ABENGOA YIELD PLC, $35.96, +24.00 pct
Shares of the company, a unit of Spanish renewable and engineering firm Abengoa SA, rose about 28 percent in their U.S. market debut, valuing the company at about $3 billion.
** INTERCLOUD SYSTEMS INC, $6.98, +12.95 pct
The company, which provides engineering, construction, maintenance and installation services to telecommunications providers, said it became a partner of virtualization software maker VMware and opened a new sales office in New England.
** TWITTER INC, $36.48, -0.84 pct
The micro blogging website on Thursday announced the abrupt departure of two senior executives, including the chief operating officer who had been responsible for the social media company’s efforts to revive flagging user growth.
** EXPRESS INC, $16.283, +20.17 pct
Private equity firm Sycamore Partners on Thursday said it was interested in acquiring apparel retailer Express, after disclosing a 9.9 percent stake that made it the largest shareholder in the company.
** CUBIST PHARMACEUTICALS INC, $68, -2.03 pct
** NEKTAR THERAPEUTICS, $14.03, +11.88 pct
** PROGENICS PHARMACEUTICALS INC, $4.17, -1.09 pct
An advisory committee to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommended on Thursday that the agency not require large cardiovascular safety trials for a class of drugs used to treat opioid-induced chronic constipation.
Seven panelists voted in favor of such trials, five voted in favor for select products and 12 voted against. But in a post-vote discussion, several panelists said they misunderstood the question and would have voted against the requirement.
The drugs, known as peripherally acting mu opioid receptor antagonists, include Progenics’s Relistor, which has been licensed to Salix and Cubist’s Entereg. AstraZeneca and Nektar also have a product, naloxegol, in development. (Reporting By Shubhankar Chakravorty in Bangalore; Editing by Joyjeet Das)