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U.S. stock index futures pointed to slight gains at the open on Friday as the October payroll report showed jobs growth continued apace while the unemployment rate fell to a six-year low. Dow Jones industrial average futures were down 0.15 percent at 17,478, S&P 500 futures were down 0.16 percent at 2,024.75 and Nasdaq 100 futures were up 0.01 percent at 4,163.25.
** WALT DISNEY CO, Thursday close $92, -2.39 pct premarket
The media and theme park giant posted a quarterly profit that fell in line with Wall Street expectations as it rode the blockbuster performance of its movie box office hits “Maleficent” and “Guardians of the Galaxy.”
But operating income at its sports behemoth ESPN fell due to higher contract rates for high-end National Football League and Major League Baseball games, which helped drag the company’s cable networks unit down by 1 percent to $1.3 billion.
The drop at cable networks, the company’s largest unit, likely drove Disney shares lower, said Gabelli & Company analyst Brett Harriss, who rates Disney a “hold.”
** TRANSOCEAN LTD, Thursday close $29.92, -5.41 pct premarket
The rig contractor expects to incur impairment charges of $2.76 billion in the third quarter as it grapples with an oversupplied offshore drilling market, and said it would delay its quarterly results.
** SALIX PHARMACEUTICALS LTD, Thursday close $138.55, -34.93 pct premarket
The drugmaker slashed its full-year forecast on Thursday and said inventory for its key drugs piled up, an issue that people familiar with the matter said dissuaded Allergan Inc from acquiring it.
** ZYNGA INC, Thursday close $2.36, +9.32 pct premarket
The maker of “Farmville” reported better-than-expected third-quarter results as it set its mobile gaming push in motion with releases such as “New Words with Friends.”
** FIRST SOLAR INC, Thursday close $56.41, -6.38 pct premarket
The solar company’s third quarter profit fell to 87 cents per share from $1.94 a year earlier, hurt by lower sales and higher tax expenses. At least four brokerages cut price targets on the stock after First Solar said it would not spin off its solar power plants into separate, publicly traded entity called a “yield co”.
** OXIGENE INC, Thursday close $2.18
MLV & Co started covering the drug developer’s stock with “buy” rating and a price target of $6.50.
Near-term catalyst for the stock is additional data from mid-stage study of its ovarian cancer drug, Zybrestat, to be presented on Sunday, analysts write in note.
** BANK OF AMERICA CORP, Thursday close $17.36, -0.75 pct premarket
The bank’s third-quarter loss tripled to $232 million, due to a revision that added legal costs related to global investigations into foreign exchange trading at major banks.
** NVIDIA CORP, Thursday close $20.22, +2.52 pct premarket
The company posted fiscal third-quarter revenue above Wall Street’s expectations, fueled by its latest graphics chips for personal computers as well as processors for data centers and cars.
** KING DIGITAL ENTERTAINMENT PLC, Thursday close $13.19, +8.72 pct premarket
The social and mobile game company reported lower non-GAAP profit on Thursday as sales from its “Candy Crush Saga” title continued to shrink.
On a non-GAAP basis, it reported third-quarter adjusted income of 56 cents per share, which was less than 70 cents per share a year ago but more than analysts’ estimate of 47 cents per share.
** SKYWORKS SOLUTIONS INC, Thursday close $62.14, +1.40 pct premarket
The radio frequency chip supplier forecast better-than-expected revenue in the current quarter, helped by increased demand from smartphone makers, particularly Apple Inc .
** ROCKWELL MEDICAL INC, Thursday close $9.33, +25.40 pct premarket
The drugmaker said on Thursday that an FDA advisory committee voted 8-3 in favor of supporting use of its iron deficiency drug to maintain hemoglobin levels in certain kidney disease patients.
** TEKMIRA PHARMACEUTICALS CORP, Thursday close $15.76, +7.11 pct premarket
The U.S. Department of Defense has exercised an option with Canada’s Tekmira for the company to make 500 courses of its experimental treatment for Ebola, the company said on Thursday.
** HOME DEPOT INC, Thursday close $97.29, -0.21 pct premarket
The world’s largest home improvement chain said hackers stole about 53 million email addresses in addition to customer data for 56 million payment cards previously disclosed by the retailer.
** AVANIR PHARMACEUTICALS INC, Thursday close $13.21, -6.13 pct premarket
The drugmaker said it was unlikely that its experimental migraine drug-device would win U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval by the scheduled timeline.
** AVG Technologies NV, Thursday close $17.62, +13.51 pct premarket
The Internet security software maker valued at about $940 million was approached by potential buyers, the Wall Street Journal reported.
** ABERCROMBIE & FITCH CO, Thursday close $35.38, -12.44 pct premarket
The teen apparel retailer estimated quarterly profit and sales below analysts’ expectations as fewer customers visited its stores and demand fell for its logo-based clothing.
** QIWI PLC, Thursday close $29.95, -3.17 pct premarket
Susquehanna cut its price target on the Russian payment services provider’s shares to $43 from $50.
“An about 22 pct Y/Y decrease in the USD/RUB exchange rate as well as an unclear macro environment in Russia prompt us to lower our growth assumptions,” analyst Meghna Ladha said.
** LEXICON PHARMACEUTICALS INC, Thursday close $1.48, -4.73 pct premarket
Wedbush Securities cut its price target on the drug developer’s shares to $3 from $4.
It “appears that a partnership (for the Type 2 diabetes indication) is not forthcoming and the company plans to pursue only Type 1 diabetes on their own,” Wedbush analysts wrote.
** REPROS THERAPEUTICS INC, Thursday close $6.45, +23.41 pct premarket
The drug developer said the U.S Food and Drug Administration did not ask for additional clinical studies from the company for approval of its testosterone replacement drug.
** MRC GLOBAL INC, Thursday close $20.21, +8.86 pct premarket
The distributor of pipes and fittings to energy industry said third quarter revenue rose 23 percent, helped by higher sales in largest market the United States.
** UBIQUITI NETWORKS INC, Thursday close $34.62, -17.33 pct premarket
The wireless networking equipment provider forecast second quarter revenue and adjusted profit below analysts’ average expectations.
** INTERCEPT PHARMACEUTICALS INC, Thursday close $246.98, -19.41 pct premarket
More safety trials on the drug developer’s liver disease drug are needed as mid-stage trial data shows a rise in bad cholesterol in some patients taking the drug, according to a report in medical journal, the Lancet.
** SEARS HOLDINGS CORP, Thursday close $32.67, +21.82 pct premarket
The struggling retailer said it was exploring the conversion of 200-300 stores to a real estate investment trust (REIT) and would offer it to shareholders through a rights offering to raise cash.
** ARCELORMITTAL SA, Thursday close $12.38, +0.65 pct premarket
The world’s largest steelmaker pointed to rising demand in its key markets next year and confirmed its profit forecast for 2014 on Friday, as improvements in U.S. and European steel more than offset plunging iron ore prices.
** HUMANA INC, Thursday close $139.87, -4.20 pct premarket
The U.S. health insurer reported a lower-than-expected third-quarter profit as it paid for costly hepatitis C treatments and invested in the Obamacare health insurance exchanges and state-based health contracts.
** YUME INC, Thursday close $4.95, -15.15 pct premarket
The video advertising service provider forecast fourth quarter revenue of $54 million-$58 million, well below the average analyst expectation of $62.9 million.
** ALLSCRIPTS HEALTHCARE SOLUTIONS INC, Thursday close $13.55, -20.30 pct premarket
The healthcare information technology provider reported a third-quarter profit of 6 cents per share, before special items against average estimates of 10 cents per share. (Compiled by Avik Das in Bangalore; Editing by Simon Jennings)