(For more market insights, including options activity, click on ; for the Day Ahead newsletter link.reuters.com/mex49s; for the Morning News Call newsletter, link.reuters.com/nex49s) U.S. stocks rose on Thursday as a better-than-expected report on weekly initial jobless claims boosted confidence the economy was improving, although caution remained ahead of Friday's employment report. The Dow Jones industrial average was up 0.83 percent at 15,569.15, the S&P 500 was up 0.77 percent at 1,765.16 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 0.95 percent at 4,049.732.
** TWITTER INC, $53.55, -18.83 pct
** FACEBOOK INC, $62.4, +0.34 pct
** GSV CAPITAL CORP, $12.29, -4.80 pct
Twitter shares fell as much as 25 percent on Thursday, wiping out about $9.8 billion in market value, after the company reported a sharp slowdown in user growth. The stock, which debuted at $26 in November, hit a low of $50 in early trading. The shares hit a peak of $74.73 in late December as investors bet that the social media platform could become as ubiquitous as Facebook.
Shares of GSV, an investment management company whose biggest holding is Twitter, also fell on the news.
** AOL INC, $49.19, +3.41 pct
The digital media and entertainment company reported a better-than-expected 13 percent rise in quarterly revenue, helped by higher ad sales.
** GREEN MOUNTAIN COFFEE ROASTERS INC, $102.97, +27.31 pct
** COCA-COLA CO, $38.12, +1.36 pct
Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, maker of the popular Keurig one-cup coffee brewer, said Coca-Cola had bought a 10 percent stake in the company for $1.25 billion and would help launch Green Mountain’s new cold drink machine planned for release as soon as October.
** KKR & CO LP, $23.81, +2.59 pct
The company’s fourth-quarter profit soared 127 percent, beating most analysts’ estimates, as the value of its private equity portfolio rose and it earned more fees from its credit investments.
** ICAHN ENTERPRISES LP, $104.72, +1.55 pct
Activist investor Carl Icahn’s publicly traded investment vehicle said Keith Cozza would take over as chief executive, replacing Daniel Ninivaggi. Ninivaggi will become the chief executive of Federal-Mogul Corp, a subsidiary of Icahn Enterprises.
** 21ST CENTURY FOX, $32.66, +2.96 pct
Rupert Murdoch’s television and film company that split from News Corp last June reported higher quarterly revenue, driven by growth in its cable networks and its European satellite business.
** THE NEW YORK TIMES CO, $14.54, +5.06 pct
The company, which publishes The New York Times, reported better-than-expected quarterly revenue and profit as advertising sales improved and more people paid for its flagship newspaper.
** BCE INC, $41.37, +1.05 pct
Canada’s biggest telecom company posted a 17 percent rise in adjusted quarterly profit on Thursday, helped by strong growth in its media wing and ongoing strength in wireless.
** DUNKIN’ BRANDS GROUP INC, $49.91, +5.52 pct
The parent of the Dunkin’ Donuts and Baskin-Robbins chains reported better-than-expected quarterly results as store traffic and customer spending rose at its U.S. outlets.
** WALT DISNEY CO, $76.3, +6.33 pct
The media company reported higher profit for the quarter that ended in December, beating Wall Street expectations due to growth at sports network ESPN and the blockbuster performance of its animated hit film “Frozen.”
** ANN INC, $33.43, +6.60 pct
The owner of the Ann Taylor and Loft stores reported fourth-quarter margins that suggested the company did not have to discount heavily in the holiday shopping season.
** ANHEUSER-BUSCH INBEV SA, $96.13, +2.08 pct
The Belgium-based company struck a deal to buy New York microbrewery Blue Point Brewing Co, as the world’s largest beer maker seeks to increase its offerings in the fast-growing craft-beer segment.
** CITIGROUP INC, $47.66, +1.28 pct
The bank has agreed to pay $110 million to thousands of homeowners who were forcibly charged expensive property insurance premiums, a court filing showed, as several U.S. banks and insurers were criticized by regulators over such practices.
** GENERAL MOTORS CO, $34.61, -1.79 pct
The automaker posted a weaker-than-expected fourth-quarter profit on Thursday as results in North America, Asia and South America disappointed.
** KELLOGG CO, $57.25, -0.21 pct
The world’s largest maker of breakfast cereals reported lower-than-expected quarterly revenue as sales for cereals fell for the third time in a row in North America.
** CANADIAN SOLAR, $37.844, +1.21 pct
The solar company said it sold a 10-megawatt solar power plant in Ontario to a fund managed by BlackRock.
The construction of the solar plant is expected to start in the first quarter and commercial operations are expected to begin in the third quarter.
** ROFIN-SINAR TECHNOLOGIES INC, $22.23, -1.02 pct
The company, which makes laser-based products used for cutting and welding, reported lower-than-expected first-quarter revenue due to lower demand in Asia.
** OCH-ZIFF CAPITAL MANAGEMENT GROUP LLC, $14.99, +3.52 pct
The company reported a sharply higher quarterly profit that beat Wall Street estimates after stronger returns at its hedge fund portfolios boosted the company’s incentive fee income.
** PRUDENTIAL FINANCIAL INC, $80.53, -2.65 pct
The second-largest U.S. life insurer reported a lower-than-expected adjusted operating income due to pretax losses related to the weakening of the Japanese yen against the dollar.
** CHESAPEAKE ENERGY CORP, $25.04, -4.46 pct
The Oklahoma City-based company cut its capital budget for the year by more than a fifth as CEO Doug Lawler focuses on drilling in U.S. shale basins that offer the best returns such as the Eagle Ford field in south Texas.
** SPECTRUM PHARMACEUTICALS INC, $8.03, +3.08 pct
The biotechnology company said that U.S. Food and Drug Administration accepted the marketing approval application for its blood cancer drug, Beleodaq, and granted it a priority review status.
The FDA grants priority review status to medicines that are considered potentially significant therapeutic advancements over existing therapies and reviews the drug within six months as compared to 10 months under its standard review.
Spectrum said the regulator assigned a review date of Aug. 9 to Beleodaq, which is intended to treat patients with relapsed or refractory peripheral T-cell lymphoma, a form of cancer that develops from white blood cells.
** TERADATA CORP, $42.17, +2.70 pct
The data analytics firm reported better-than-expected quarterly results as its gross margins expanded.
** WABASH NATIONAL CORP, $12.29, -5.32 pct
The trailer maker reported a lower-than-expected profit for the fourth quarter as its costs rose.
** TESORO CORP, $47.52, -4.86 pct
Tesoro is replacing older railcars in its crude-by-rail fleet with ones that have the latest safety design, Chief Executive Greg Goff told analysts.
** PANDORA MEDIA INC, $32.75, -8.60 pct
The company reported higher revenue and profit for the quarter ending in December but said that costs to expand its audience are rising. The online streaming music company said earnings per share for this year are expected to be between 13 cents and 17 cents, below analysts expectations of 19 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
** GILEAD SCIENCES, $79.19, +1.33 pct
The company plans to license its breakthrough hepatitis C drug Sovaldi to a number of Indian generic pharmaceutical manufacturers, allowing for lower-priced sales of the medication in that developing nation, according to the company.
** ASTRAZENECA, $62.16, -2.11 pct
** MERCK & CO, $53.37, -0.30 pct
London-based AstraZeneca said it expected earnings to continue to fall in 2014 as generic competition to its popular heartburn and ulcer drug Nexium takes a big bite out of U.S. profits from May.
AstraZeneca is moving an experimental Alzheimer’s drug into late-stage development, taking on U.S. rival Merck, which announced plans to start similar final-stage research in December.
** YELP INC, $90.25, +19.97 pct
The consumer review website reported better-than-expected quarterly revenue as it added more customers to cash in on the surging demand for local information on mobile phones and tablets.
** SONY CORP, $16.41, +3.21 pct
The company’s Chief Executive Kazuo Hirai is seeking to cure a TV business that has lost $7.8 billion over a decade by isolating it to speed up decisions on future strategy. Hirai is spinning off TV operations into a separate business in the latest attempt to fix a division that he says for now remains central to the Japanese electronics maker. Sony also confirmed on Thursday it would sell its Vaio personal computer division, effectively ending 17 years in that business.
** ALLSTATE CORP, $51, +2.93 pct
The company aims to grow its share of the U.S. home and auto insurance markets without the need for “abnormally large” rate increases, its CEO said, after the company’s profit more than doubled in the fourth quarter.
** ALCATEL-LUCENT, $4.41, +6.27 pct
The telecoms equipment maker almost halved its net loss for 2013 as cost-cutting, a tweaked product offering and asset sales under Chief Executive Michel Combes began to take effect.
** SHUTTERFLY INC, $43.825, -11.77 pct
The online photo-sharing services provider forecast a current-quarter loss that is far bigger than analysts had projected. The company also said profit fell 18 percent during the fourth quarter that ended in December, adding that it expects operating expenses to rise this year.
** COSTCO WHOLESALE CORP, $113.75, +2.93 pct
The company’s January same-store sales beat market expectations, even as the warehouse club retailer recorded weak fuel prices and lower international sales in dollar terms.
** ORASURE TECHNOLOGIES INC, $6.2799, +13.15 pct
The diagnostics company reported a smaller-than-expected quarterly profit and a 30 percent rise in revenue due to increasing demand for its in-home HIV test and higher revenue from its molecular collection systems business.
** SIERRA WIRELESS INC, $18.8735, -7.44 pct
The Canadian producer of wireless communication equipment reported a quarterly loss after incurring higher research and development expenses.
** QUICKLOGIC CORP, $4.36, -4.18 pct
The chipmaker's fourth-quarter revenue nearly tripled, mainly due to strong shipments to Samsung Electronics Co Ltd , which accounted for over two-thirds of its revenue in the quarter. (link.reuters.com/dup66v)
** GREEN PLAINS RENEWABLE ENERGY INC, $23.57, +2.57 pct
The ethanol producer posted a better-than-expected quarterly profit on Wednesday due to strong demand. Green Plains also said it expected first-quarter results to be better than the fourth quarter, helped by its recent acquisitions of ethanol plants in Nebraska and Minnesota.
The company’s net income of 65 cents per share beat the average analyst estimate of 41 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
** SYNCHRONOSS TECHNOLOGIES INC, $31.25, +17.17 pct
The company’s fourth-quarter profit nearly quadrupled due to a 75 percent rise in revenue at its cloud services business.
Synchronoss provides software and services to communication service providers and cable operators to manage subscribers.
** TTM TECHNOLOGIES INC, $7.92, +0.00 pct
At least three brokerages cut their price targets on the printed circuit board maker’s stock after the company forecast first-quarter results below Wall Street estimates and said it expected a seasonal decline in its business in the first half of the year.
** GLU MOBILE INC, $4.71, +21.71 pct
The mobile game developer reported a surprise quarterly profit on Wednesday, citing better marketing and monetization of its games. The company also forecast a profit for the first quarter.
At least four brokerages raised their price targets on the company’s stock on Thursday. (Compiled by Natalie Grover in Bangalore; Editing by Kirti Pandey)