January 31, 2014 / 7:25 PM / 4 years ago

MARKET PULSE-Ultragenyx, DFC Global, Atlantic Power, Vanda

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U.S. stocks retreated on Friday, on course for their first monthly decline since August, in the wake of weak earnings reports by companies like Amazon and Walmart and concerns about declining currencies in emerging markets. The Dow Jones industrial average was down 0.47 percent at 15,773.57, the S&P 500 was down 0.22 percent at 1,790.33 and the Nasdaq Composite was down 0.20 percent at 4,114.729.

** ALCOA INC, $11.76, -1.59 pct

Vice President Olivier Jarrault sold 175,031 shares of the largest U.S. aluminum producer at an average price of $10.57, according to a regulatory filing, an 11.5 percent discount to the stock’s Thursday close.

** CHEVRON CORP, $112.502, -3.39 pct

The second-largest U.S. oil company said its fourth-quarter profit dropped 32 percent as refining margins and production fell around the world.

** VANDA PHARMACEUTICALS INC, $13.94, +6.74 pct

U.S. health regulators approved the company’s experimental drug to regulate the internal body clocks of blind patients and help normalize sleep patterns.


Shares of the pharmaceutical company, which develops drugs for rare and ultra-rare diseases, more than doubled in its debut after its offering of 5.8 million shares was priced at $21 each, above its expected price range.


The provider of post-secondary education late on Thursday reported first-quarter profit that missed analysts estimates and said it would be difficult in 2014 to meet or exceed 2013’s revenue and operating results.

** INTERMUNE INC $13.624, -16.16 pct

Wells Fargo analyst Brian Abrahams said a tweet on Friday said that late-stage data from a lung cancer drug of Intermune’s competitor Boehringer Ingelheim was available.

“It appears that the competitor data are not yet disclosed, and the reports may have been erroneous,” Abrahams wrote in a note and said any weakness caused by the confusion related to the matter was a buying opportunity.

** SILICON IMAGE INC, $5.6401, -0.18 pct

Needham & Co cut its rating on the chipmaker’s stock to “hold” from “buy,” despite better-than-expected results and forecast, citing lack of meaningful sales of its 60GHz wireless chips to offset heavy investment. “We have to see 60GHz be adopted in the smartphone/tablet markets or a meaningful gaming platform in order to justify the ongoing expenses associated with this product,” analyst Rajvindra Gill wrote.

** TOP IMAGE SYSTEMS LTD, $4.85, -11.33 pct

The mobile imaging and content management software provider priced its offering of 2.8 million shares at $4.75 each, a 13 percent discount to the stock’s closing price on Thursday.

** CARA THERAPEUTICS INC, $13.05, +18.64 pct

Shares of the pharmaceutical company rose about 29 percent in their debut. The IPO of 5 million shares was priced at $11 each, the low-end of the company’s expected price range.

** CHUBB CORP, $85.23, -1.76 pct

The property and casualty insurer reported better-than- expected quarterly results but warned that first-quarter results for 2014 would be hurt by severe winter weather in the United States that would trim net profit by 39-52 cents per share after tax.

The insurer also said it expected to earn $7.10-$7.40 per share in 2014 on an operating basis, below analysts’ average estimate of $7.60.

** LEGG MASON INC, $42.55, -1.73 pct

The asset manager reported a fourth-quarter profit but gave a mixed picture of flows into its funds, highlighting the task its new chief executive still faces to turn the company around.

Investors added $700 million to the company’s bond funds during the quarter, but withdrew $700 million from Legg Mason’s equity products.

Until the company can step up its flows, its valuation is likely to lag peers, Sandler O’Neill analyst Michael Kim in a note to investors.

** VALIDUS HOLDINGS LTD, $35.98, -3.20

The reinsurer’s fourth-quarter operating earnings were significantly below Wall Street estimates as it wrote fewer premiums during the quarter. Gross premiums written fell by 24 percent to $311.8 million for the quarter ended Dec. 31.

** VALIDUS HOLDINGS LTD, $35.98, -3.20 pct

The reinsurer’s fourth-quarter operating earnings were significantly below Wall Street estimates as it wrote fewer premiums during the quarter. Gross premiums written fell by 24 percent to $311.8 million for the quarter ended Dec. 31.

** SIBANYE GOLD LTD, $5.69, +4.40 pct

The gold producer said production for the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2013 was 2 percent higher than its forecast. The company also raised its outlook for 2013 gold production to 44,500 kilogram from 44,000 kg.

** UNISYS CORP, $34.4, +10.43 pct

The IT services provider posted much better-than-expected quarterly results boosted by lower expenses and a strong performance in the company’s services business, which recorded its third successive quarter of order growth.


The shipping company priced its offering of common shares at $6.65 each, below the stock’s Thursday close of $7.48.

** LANTRONIX INC, $2.52, -10.64 pct

The communication equipment provider reported a fall in quarterly revenue due to lower demand for its products from original equipment manufacturers.

** PROOFPOINT INC, $40.78, +11.63 pct

Five brokerages raised their price targets on the online security service provider’s stock, following the company’s better-than-expected fourth-quarter results on Thursday. Proofpoint’s results were helped by growth in its subscription business, which rose about 43 percent, and accounted for most of the company’s revenue in the quarter.

** ASPEN TECHNOLOGY INC, $45.52, +9.43 pct

The company, which provides supply chain management software to the manufacturing industry, posted estimate-topping quarterly results on Thursday as increasing customer demand led to a 28 percent rise in total revenue.

At least three brokerages raised their price targets on the company’s stock.

** ROCKET FUEL INC, $59.83, -7.02 pct

The digital advertising technology company priced a follow-on offering of 5 million shares at $61 each, after markets closed on Thursday, a 5 percent discount to the stock’s last traded price on the Nasdaq.

** GIGAMON INC, $30.75, +9.74 pct

Brokerage Goldman Sachs upgraded the maker of traffic management software company to “buy” from “neutral” and said its technology in the network visibility fabric market will boost the company’s performance.

** JDS UNIPHASE CORP, $13.55, +6.53 pct

Brokerage William Blair & Co upgraded the network testing company’s stock to “outperfom” from “market perform,” citing robust demand from the optical side of the company’s business.

At least two other brokerages also raised their target prices on the company’s stock.

** COMPUTER SCIENCES CORP, $60.64, +9.93 pct

The U.S. technology services provider reported better-than-expected results on Thursday and raised its full-year earnings forecast.

** CONSTANT CONTACT INC, $27.43, -11.66 pct

The online marketer forecast current-quarter results largely below analysts’ estimates on Thursday.

** MALIBU BOATS INC $17.545, +25.32 pct

Shares of the company, which manufactures and sells sports boats, rose about 29 percent in its debut after its offering of 7.1 million shares was priced at $14 each.

** DOMTAR CORP, $107.19, +11.29 pct

Deutsche Bank raised its rating on the Canadian paper and pulp products maker’s stock to “buy” from “hold,” citing better-than-expected demand trends in uncoated free sheet paper.

“As Domtar’s mix shifts more towards growth-oriented and lower-volatility businesses, there is a solid argument for a higher valuation multiple,” the brokerage said and raised its price target on the stock to $115 from $95.

Domtar has been expanding its personal care business and reducing its exposure to weak pulp prices.


The natural and organic groceries retailer on Thursday reported a first-quarter profit that beat the average analysts’ estimate, helped by a 10.6 percent rise in comparable store sales and higher gross margins.


Analysts at Morgan Stanley cut their rating on the exploration and production company’s stock to “equal weight,” according to theflyonthewall.com.

** U.S. SILICA HOLDINGS INC, $29.35, -8.34 pct

The commercial silica maker estimated a fourth-quarter profit that lagged analysts’ expectations as severe storms in December hurt well completion and drove up costs. A bad debt from a bankrupt customer also weighed on its results, the company said.

** ATLANTIC POWER CORP, $2.609, -16.65 pct

Analysts at TD Securities downgraded the Canadian power company’s stock to “reduce” from “hold,” saying Atlantic’s recent debt restructuring initiatives could limit its ability to pay dividend. Atlantic Power’s wholly owned unit launched up to $600 million in debt offering and said it plans to use the proceeds to fund its working capital needs, the company said on Thursday.

** GOOGLE INC, $1,182.12, +4.12 pct

The Internet giant’s quarterly revenue beat Wall Street’s target despite an ongoing decline in prices for its online ads and deepening losses at Motorola, the handset-making division to be sold to China’s Lenovo.

** AMAZON.COM INC, $363.7194, -9.75 pct

The online retailer warned of a possible loss in the current quarter and its quarterly results missed expectations in the holiday shopping season. At least seven brokerages cut their price targets on the stock, by as much as $30 to a low of $415.

** TYSON FOODS INC, $37.89, +9.86 pct

The largest U.S. meat processor reported first-quarter profits that grew more than Wall Street expected, helped by higher chicken and beef sales.

** ABBVIE INC, $49.71, +2.90 pct

** ENANTA PHARMACEUTICALS INC, $36.365, +12.69 pct

Abbvie issued a cautious 2014 profit forecast, but said it expects U.S. approval this year for its potentially lucrative new all-oral treatment for hepatitis C. Enanta is developing these treatments with the company.

** MASTERCARD INC, $75.75, -5.03 pct

The world’s No.2 credit and debit card company reported a 3 percent rise in quarterly profit but missed analysts’ average forecast as expenses rose.

** ACCURAY INC, $10.31, +11.58 pct

The maker of cancer radiation devices reported a smaller-than-expected quarterly loss, helped by revenue growth and strong margins, and raised its 2014 revenue forecast.

** HANGER INC, $33.88, -13.33 pct

The orthotic and prosthetic products provider estimated full-year earnings significantly below analysts’ average expectations due to operational issues at one of its units.

Brokerage Noble Financial cut its price target on the company’s stock to $38 from $40.

** SOLAZYME INC, $12.615, +29.12 pct

The renewable oil producer said on Thursday that commercial operations had begun at both Archer Daniels Midland Co’s facility in Clinton, Iowa, and at another facility in Galva, Iowa, operated by American Natural Products. Oil products - used in lubricants, metalworking, home and personal care - made at the facilities by the three companies, are being sold in the United States and Brazil, Solazyme said.

** WYNN RESORTS LTD, $216.95, +7.66 pct

The casino operator on Thursday reported fourth-quarter results that beat analysts’ estimates, driven by growth in revenue from its Macau and Las Vegas operations.

At least four brokerages raised their price targets on the company’s stock on Friday.

** GREEN DOT CORP, $22.44, -16.05 pct

The prepaid debit card company reported a weaker-than-expected quarterly profit as it incurred higher operating expenses.

Brokerage SunTrust Robinson reduced its price target on the company’s stock to $22 from $25, but maintained its “neutral” rating. Green Dot forecast full-year revenue in the range of $640-$650 million, well above the average analyst estimate of $631.6 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

** CEPHEID INC, $54.055, +14.35 pct

The company reported a smaller-than-expected loss in the fourth quarter, helped by higher sales of its molecular diagnostics systems and reagents.

At least seven brokerages, including UBS, Citigroup and Canaccord Genuity raised their price targets on the company’s stock.

** MATTEL INC, $37.33, -13.21 pct

** HASBRO INC, $48.62, -4.36 pct

Mattel, the world’s largest toy company, missed Wall Street’s profit and sales estimates for the fourth quarter on weak demand in the United States during the all-important holiday selling season.

Rival Hasbro’s stock also fell on the results.

** COOPER TIRE & RUBBER CO, $23.5, +2.89 pct

The company said it could sell its 65 percent stake in its Chinese joint venture to partner Chengshan Group Co Ltd, clearing the way for the U.S. tire maker to look for a buyer for itself.

** CYTRX CORP, $7.165, -10.21 pct

The drug developer priced a public offering of 11.5 million shares of its common stock at $6.50 each, a discount of 19 percent to its Thursday close. The company plans to use the net proceeds of the offering to fund trials of its cancer drug, aldoxorubicin, and for general corporate purposes.

DFC GLOBAL CORP, $7.867, -25.57 pct

The pawn and payday lender reported a weaker-than-expected quarterly profit as it earned lower fees from its consumer lending and pawn businesses, promoting several brokerages to lower their price targets on the company’s stock. Nomura downgraded the company’s stock to “buy” from “neutral.”

** MEDLEY CAPITAL CORP, $13.72, -4.32 pct

The business development finance company started a public offering of 6 million shares of its common stock at $14 each, below its Thursday close of $14.34. The company plans to use the proceeds from the offering for debt repayment, for investment and general corporate purposes.

** ZYNGA INC, $4.311, +21.10 pct

** GLU MOBILE INC, $3.97, +5.87 pct

Zynga will shed 15 percent of its workforce to slash costs and buy mobile game developer NaturalMotion for $527 million to refresh a stalled games pipeline.

Shares of mobile game developer Glu also rose on the news.

** CHIPOTLE MEXICAN GRILL INC, $559.25, +13.22 pct

The burrito chain said on Thursday an increase in customer visits contributed to bigger-than-expected growth in quarterly sales at established restaurants.

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