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U.S. stocks opened flat on Wednesday with investors looking ahead to an impending monetary policy announcement by the Federal Reserve as it concludes a two-day meeting, although the central bank is not expected to make any major changes. The Dow Jones industrial average was up 0.02 percent at 16,811.56 and the S&P 500 was up 0.14 percent at 1,944.65.
** ADOBE SYSTEMS INC, $74.11, +9.73 pct
The maker of Photoshop and Acrobat software reported better-than-expected quarterly profit and revenue, helped by higher subscription sales of its Creative Cloud and Marketing Cloud suites.
Brokerage JMP Securities raised its price target on Adobe’s stock to $82 from $78. Susquehanna Financial Group raised its target price to $87 from $83. RBC Capital Markets raised its target price to $85 from $75.
** ENDOCYTE INC, $6.505, -15.74 pct
The drug developer said Merck & Co Inc would no longer pursue the development of Endocyte’s cancer drug, vintafolide. Vintafolide is being developed to deliver chemotherapy drugs directly to cancer cells and is being tested in patients with lung and breast cancer.
** ENTEROMEDICS INC, $1.7982, +18.30 pct
The medical device maker said a U.S. FDA panel voted 6-2 in favor of its obesity device. EnteroMedics device helps treat obesity by controlling hunger and blocking the primary nerve that regulates the digestive system.
** LA-Z-BOY INC, $22.85, -8.01 pct
The company, known for its La-Z-Boy recliners, reported lower-than-expected revenue for the fourth quarter. Same-store sales declined 0.9 percent.
** AIR PRODUCTS & CHEMICALS INC, $129.89, +6.82 pct
The industrial gas producer under pressure from Bill Ackman to overhaul its management, said it has appointed Seifi Ghasemi chief executive. Ghasemi, currently CEO of specialty chemicals maker Rockwood Holdings Inc, replaces John McGlade.
** MEETME INC, $2.08, +7.77 pct
Wunderlich Securities initiates coverage on the social media technology company with “buy” and price target of $4.50. Enhancements to MeetMe’s main mobile app to help increase active users, brokerage said. All four analysts covering the stock have “buy” or “strong buy” on it
** FEDEX CORP, $147.51, +5.13 pct
The world No. 2 package delivery company reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit as strong shipments of items ordered online boosted its ground business. FedEx also said earnings for 2015 should benefit from ongoing cost cutting and restructuring.
** CONAGRA FOODS INC, $30.65, -6.70 pct
The maker of Hunt’s tomato ketchup and Slim Jim beef jerky said its adjusted fourth-quarter profit would be below its forecast due to lower sales in its consumer foods business and weak profits in private brands.
** WALGREEN CO, $74.8, +2.33 pct
Barclays Capital raised its rating on the drugstore operator’s stock to “overweight” from “equal weight”, saying the company was considering changes that could materially boost earnings and the stock price. Potential changes include reducing expenses and optimizing the capital structure, and inverting the existing corporate structure to achieve tax savings, analyst Meredith Adler wrote in a note, raising the price target to $92 from $56.
** GW PHARMACEUTICALS PLC, $87, -3.14 pct
The drugmaker’s American depositary shares fell after the UK-based company said it planned to sell 1.7 million of its ADRs in a public offering. The price of the offering has not been decided.
** BLACKBERRY LTD, $8.38, +4.10 pct
The Canadian smartphone maker is set to unveil a licensing deal with Amazon.com Inc, sources said. The Deal would allow the company to offer about 240,000 Android apps from Amazon’s app store on new BlackBerry’s devices.
** SUNPOWER CORP, $39.1, -2.80 pct
JP Morgan analysts downgrade the solar panel maker’s stock to “neutral” from “overweight”, citing its 35 percent run up this year. They said they are confident on Sunpower’s business due to low cost of capital and strong momentum in distributed rooftop solar business.
** ACTUANT CORP, $34.99, -3.61 pct
The industrial products maker cuts full-year profit forecast, partly due to weak mining industry. The company forecast full-year earnings of $1.92-$1.97 per share, below previous estimate of $2.00-$2.10
** FORESIGHT ENERGY LP, $19.44, -2.80 pct
Foresight Energy’s units fell more than 2 percent in their market debut, after the coal producer’s IPO was priced at the midpoint of its expected price range. The company raised $350 million after the offering of $17.5 million common units, representing limited partner interests, were priced at $20 each.
The biopharmaceutical company’s shares will debut on the Nasdaq on Wednesday. ZS Pharma raised $106.2 million in IPO of its common shares. Offering of 5.9 million shares was priced at $18 - higher than the expected range. The company is valued at $338 million at the IPO price.
** RED HAT INC, $52.639, +0.40 pct
The Linux operating system vendor said it would buy eNovance, a provider of open-source cloud computing services for 50 million euros ($68 million) in cash and 20 million euros in shares of Red Hat common stock ($1 = 0.7345 Euros)
** D.R. HORTON INC, $23.31, -0.72 pct
Applications for U.S. home mortgages fell sharply last week as interest rates rose, according to Mortgage Bankers Association. Fixed 30-year mortgage rates averaged 4.36 percent in week ended June 13, up from 4.34 percent the week before. (Compiled by Mridhula Raghavan; Edited by Don Sebastian)