Oct 11 (Reuters) - Some U.S. stocks on the move on Thursday:
Stocks rose after data showed initial jobless claims at their lowest in more than four and a half years, pointing to signs of continued improvement in the jobs market.
Sprint shares jumped 19 percent on news Japan’s Softbank was in talks to buy a majority stake in the wireless carrier. A transaction would represent a new shakeup in the rapidly changing U.S. wireless market and possibly reflect a more conducive environment for corporate deals.
The Dow Jones industrial average was up 72.49 points, or 0.54 percent, at 13,417.46. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index was up 10.44 points, or 0.73 percent, at 1,443.00. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 20.84 points, or 0.68 percent, at 3,072.62.
** SPRINT NEXTEL CORP, $5.71, up 13.33 pct (1251 ET)
** METROPCS COMMUNICATIONS INC, $11.56, down 4 pct (1251 ET)
** CLEARWIRE CORP, $2.01, up 55 pct (1328 ET)
Sprint Nextel confirmed that it is engaged in talks with Japan’s Softbank Corp about a potential “substantial investment” in Sprint.
Clearwire shares also jumped on the news. Sprint could be attractive to Softbank as it has a majority interest in Clearwire, which owns 2.5 Ghz spectrum, a Wells Fargo analyst said. Softbank is among the few global carriers which has an active 2.5GHz TDD / LTE network, the analyst added.
MetroPCS shares fell after it was reported that Sprint Nextel was still weighing whether to make a counter bid for it. MetroPCS agreed last week to merge with Deutsche Telekom AG’s unit, T-Mobile USA, but many investors hoped Sprint would make a higher counter bid.
A Guggenheim analyst said the stock could trade down as MetroPCS and Deutcshe prepare to report earnings, as “disappointing earnings from either or both companies could cause forward estimates to be revised downward and lead to increased investor skepticism around the merged company’s prospects.”
** JAMES RIVER COAL CO, $3.52, up 11.7 pct (1316 ET)
** ALPHA NATURAL RESOURCES INC, $8.45, up 15.7 pct (1319 ET)
** ARCH COAL INC, $7.89, up 15 pct (1320 ET)
** PEABODY ENERGY CORP, $26.09, up 8.6 pct (1321 ET)
** CONSOL ENERGY INC, $35.42, up 7.8 pct (1322 ET)
** WALTER ENERGY INC, $37.48, up 6.7 pct (1323 ET)
Coal miners’ shares rose because of higher natural gas prices, which could encourage the use of coal by power producers, said CRT Capital Group analyst Kuni Chen. Natural gas prices have risen in the last four days due to cool weather and outages in nuclear plants.
** SM ENERGY CO, $56.55, up 6.37 pct (1230 ET)
Zacks Investment Research upgraded the oil and gas explorer to “neutral,” citing the company’s asset mix and good production growth forecast.
The brokerage expects the Denver, Colorado-based company’s “premier position” in the liquid-rich Eagle Ford shale to increase shareholder value.
** REALOGY INC, $33.77, up 25 pct (1252 ET)
The real estate services company’s shares soared during their market debut, as investors bet on the growth of the housing market.
** SHUTTERSTOCK INC, $22.02, up 29.5 pct (12 53 ET)
The online stock photography provider debuted on the New York Stock Exchange, after pricing its shares above its expected range.
** CAFEPRESS INC, $6.25, down 16.7 pct (1254 ET)
The company said on Wednesday it estimates third-quarter revenue at nearly the midpoint of its previously expected range of between $42.5 million and $45 million. The print-on-demand website also agreed to buy privately held e-commerce platform EZ Prints Inc for about $30 million.
“We believe CafePress’ core business remains under pressure, and while the acquisition of EZ Prints could help the Shops business and expand growth opportunities, we believe heavy promotional activity will likely be required to drive the top line for at least the next few quarters,” J.P. Morgan Securities said in a note.
** CRUMBS BAKE SHOP INC, $2.45, up 10.9 pct (1246 ET)
The cupcake retailer said it completed $9.8 million in equity financing which will be used to fund new store growth and bolster working capital.
** PILGRIMS PRIDE CORP, $4.5, down 5 pct (1246 ET)
The chicken processor shares fell after the USDA published a report called the World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates on Thursday, which said that the forecast for corn production for 2012/13 was lowered by 21 million bushels.
Corn is the main ingredient in chicken feed. [here ]
** SAFEWAY INC, $15.90, down 2.4 pct (1254 ET)
The second-largest U.S. supermarket chain, reported quarterly sales that missed Wall Street’s view.
** DRAGONWAVE INC , $2.49, up 13.2 pct (1254 ET)
The telecom network equipment maker posted a narrower second-quarter loss on Wednesday, helped by the closing of the acquisition of Nokia Siemens Networks’ microwave technology business and a $19.4 million one-time gain related to it.
** ROSETTA GENOMICS LTD, $5.75, up 9 pct (1255 ET)
The diagnostic tests maker named officers to its newly-created positions of chief medical and scientific officer.
The former director of science and technology of Israel-based BioLineRx Ltd, Dganit Bar, is now the chief scientific officer of Rosetta while Robert Wassman was named the chief medical officer, effective Oct. 22.
** COOPER TIRE & RUBBER CO, $20.17, up 7.9 pct (1255 ET)
Indian tyre maker Apollo Tyres is in the process of buying a controlling stake in the company, India’s Economic Times reported.
** AMICUS THERAPEUTICS INC, $6.01, up 7 pct (1256 ET)
The company said a mid-stage study showed that a higher dose of its experimental drug helped improve enzyme activity in patients suffering from rare inherited disorder, when administered along with two approved drugs.
Pompe disease, caused by the hereditary lack of an enzyme involved in the breakdown of nutrients, leads to progressive muscle weakness and can severely damage the liver, heart and other organs.
** OSHKOSH CORP, $30.02, 11.8 pct (1256 ET)
Activist investor Carl Icahn offered to buy all outstanding shares of the U.S. truckmaker for $32.50, a 21 percent premium to their Wednesday closing price.
** DEAN FOODS CO, $14.64, down 2.3 pct (1256 ET)
UBS Investment Research cut its price target on the dairy company’s stock to $15.5 from $17.5.
** FASTENAL CO, $45.94, up 8.5 pct (1257 ET)
The industrial distributor posted third-quarter profit inline with market expectations, on improved transactional gross margins, which measures daily fluctuations in price relative to freight and product costs.
** BOEING Co, $71.17, up 1.2 pct (1257 ET)
Alaska Airlines said it will buy 50 Boeing 737 single-aisle jetliners, worth $5 billion at list prices, in its largest order yet.
** WAL-MART STORES INC, $75.53, up 0.2 pct (1257 ET)
The world’s largest retailer expects sales to grow throughout this year and next as it keeps enticing shoppers, especially those on limited budgets, with smaller new stores, ecommerce and lower prices.
** AMAZON.COM INC, $246.02 up 0.45 pct (1257 ET)
The company received approval from the U.S. Federal Communications Commission to sell its high-end Kindle Fire 4G tablets, a company spokeswoman said on Wednesday.
** VOXX INTERNATIONAL CORP, $6.86, down 5.8 pct (1258 ET)
The audio equipment maker lowered its forecast for full-year adjusted earnings before depreciation and amortization to $61 million from its prior estimate of between $62 million and $65 million as and said weak European economic conditions will continue to hurt in the second half of the year.
The company also reported first-quarter results below analysts’ estimates.
** PFIZER INC, $25.12, up 0.2 pct (1259 ET)
The company said a late-stage trial of its experimental pain drug showed the drug’s long-term safety profile was comparable to those of other similar formulations.
** WINNEBAGO INDUSTRIES INC, $12.17, down 0.3 pct (1259 ET)
The largest U.S. motor home maker reported its highest motor homes order backlog since the recession, underscoring the recovery of the U.S. recreational vehicle market.
** PRIVATEBANCORP INC, $17.24, up 8.3 pct (1300 ET)
The company said on Wednesday it plans to raise about $200 million to repay the bailout funds it received from the U.S. Treasury under the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP).
** ROYAL GOLD INC, $91.09, down 4.3 pct (1300 ET)
The company, which acquires precious metals royalties, said it would sell 5.25 million shares of its common stock to a group of underwriters led by Goldman, Sachs & Co.
** RUBY TUESDAY INC, $6.94, down 1.1 pct (1300 ET)
The company reported a lower-than-expected quarterly profit on higher advertising and marketing expenses and said it expects these costs to rise for the rest of the year.
** NEW YORK TIMES CO, $10.45, up 4.7 pct (1300 ET)
Barclays Capital raised its rating and price target on the media company’s stock.
** VANDA PHARMACEUTICALS INC, $3.89, down 4.1 pct (1300 ET)
The company said Novartis AG dropped development of a long-acting injectable formulation of Vanda’s schizophrenia drug, Fanapt.
Vanda had sold marketing rights of Fanapt in the United States and Canada in 2009 to the European drugmaker for about $465 million.
** ZYNGA INC, $2.48, up 5.7 pct (1246 ET)
The gamemaker launched a revamped addition to France-based Atari’s Super Bunny Breakout franchise on the Apple App Store, a Piper Jaffray analyst said. (Complied by Aditi Shrivastava in Bangalore) (email@example.com, within U.S. +1 646 223 8780, outside U.S. +91 80 4135 5783, Reuters messaging: firstname.lastname@example.org)