(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. stock index futures pointed to a slightly lower open on Thursday, with a better-than-expected read on durable goods helping to offset geopolitical uncertainty in Ukraine. Dow Jones industrial average futures were up 0.01 percent at 16,180, S&P 500 futures were down 0.03 percent at 1,841.3 and Nasdaq 100 futures were down 0.04 percent at 3,672.25.
** TESLA MOTORS INC, Wednesday close $253, +3.08 pct premarket
The company said on Wednesday it plans to raise $1.6 billion from investors to finance a new battery factory that will help the upstart U.S. automaker reach its goal of producing a lower-priced, mass-market electric car by 2017. Tesla said the new plant, nicknamed the “Gigafactory,” would be built in either Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico or Texas.
** SUCAMPO PHARMACEUTICALS INC, Wednesday close $8.39, +24.40 pct after market
The drugmaker reported better-than-expected fourth-quarter results, helped by higher sales of its only approved drug, Amitiza, used for the treatment of chronic idiopathic constipation in adults.
** BIOTELEMETRY INC, Wednesday close $9.85, +14.21 pct premarket
The medical technology company reported better-than-expected fourth-quarter results due to a rise in revenue from patient services, helped by higher overall patient volume.
** J.C. PENNEY CO INC, Wednesday close $5.96, +23.83 pct premarket
After two years of massive losses, the retailer reported improved sales and profit margins for the holiday season quarter and said it expects to make further strides this year.
At least two brokerages raised their price targets on the company’s stock.
** BEST BUY CO INC, Wednesday close $25.82, +7.55 pct premarket
The retailer reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit on Thursday on lower expenses and said it was running ahead of plan in terms of cutting costs.
For graphic on Best Buy earnings (link.reuters.com/wuz27v)
** E-COMMERCE CHINA DANGDANG INC, Wednesday close $9.97, +11.53 pct premarket
The Chinese e-commerce company returned to profitability and its fourth-quarter revenue beat Wall Street estimates, helped by higher product and media sales and margin growth.
The company expects first-quarter revenue to grow by 30 percent.
** NOODLES & CO, Wednesday close $39.55, -7.71 pct premarket
The restaurant operator, on Wednesday, reported weaker-than-expected fourth-quarter results, blaming the unusually cold winter in the United States, which it also said would hurt results in the current quarter.
At least three brokerages cut their price targets on the company’s stock on Thursday.
** SAFE BULKERS INC, Wednesday close $10.27, +9.06 pct premarket
The shipping company reported on Wednesday a better-than-expected quarterly profit as it operated more vessels at higher daily rates. (link.reuters.com/nez27v)
** HALCON RESOURCES CORP, Wednesday close $3.86, -6.22 pct premarket
The oil and gas producer reported a lower-than-expected fourth-quarter adjusted profit on Wednesday, due to a pre-tax impairment charge of about $239 million and a 1,220 barrels of oil equivalent per day negative impact related to adverse weather conditions during the quarter ended Dec. 31. [D:nGNXUZXQOa]
** NUTRISYSTEM INC, Wednesday close $16.82, -2.20 pct premarket
The weight management company, on Wednesday, forecast a surprise current-quarter loss as it expects a new promotion to hit gross margins.
The company said it expects a loss of 2-7 cents per share. Analysts, on average, were expecting a profit of 13 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
** AUTODESK INC, Wednesday close $54.72, +4.86 pct premarket
The software designer’s fourth-quarter revenue beat Street consensus estimates, helped by higher subscription revenue from its AutoCAD and Revit software used by designers, architects and engineers.
The company also forecast first-quarter and full-year revenue above the average analyst estimate, on expectations of higher billing revenue and margin growth.
** SOLAZYME INC, Wednesday close $11.81, +6.27 pct premarket
The renewable oil producer said on Wednesday that it had started shipping multiple products from its Clinton and Iowa units and was commissioning its new Brazil facility. Solazyme uses micro-algae to convert low cost plant sugars into high value renewable oils and bioproducts.
Analysts at Cowen and Co raised their price target on the company’s stock to $17 from $14.
** ROUNDY‘S INC, Wednesday close $6.75, -5.19 pct premarket
The U.S. supermarket chain, on Wednesday, forecast current-quarter adjusted profit below the average analyst estimate.
“Core Wisconsin, Minnesota store base continues to struggle due to excess capacity and a highly promotional environment,” Jefferies analyst Mark Wiltamuth said, after cutting his price target on the company’s stock to $7.25 from $8.
** BAIDU INC, Wednesday close $172.9, +2.08 pct premarket
The Chinese web-search provider on Wednesday posted fourth-quarter revenue that beat Wall Street expectations due to a rise in revenue from its mobile business. The company also forecast first-quarter revenue above the average analyst estimate.
At least two brokerages raised their price targets on Baidu’s stock.
** WHITING PETROLEUM CORP, Wednesday close $62.88, +2.10 pct after market
The oil and natural gas producer met Wall Street expectations, but posted a fourth-quarter loss on Wednesday, saying its exploration, production and interest costs had spiked.
** CHICO‘S FAS INC, Wednesday close $18, -5.56 pct premarket
The women’s apparel and accessories retailer reported fourth-quarter results below consensus estimates, hurt by a 3.4 percent decline in comparable store sales and a weaker gross margin due to heavy discounting.
** CONTINENTAL RESOURCES INC, Wednesday close $120.58, -2.55 pct premarket
The company, which drills for oil in North Dakota, Oklahoma and Colorado, said on Wednesday that its fourth-quarter profit fell 40 percent as costs rose.
** INFOBLOX INC, Wednesday close $23.87, -2.60 pct premarket
The network equipment maker, on Wednesday, forecast third-quarter results below the average analyst estimate, after saying its second-quarter results were hurt by disappointing business with the U.S. government.
** SEARS HOLDINGS CORP, Wednesday close $40.4, +3.39 pct premarket
The retailer, on Thursday, reported a big loss and sales decline in a “tough-to-terrible” holiday quarter, but said it was making progress in generating more of its sales through a loyalty program it was betting its future on.
** VALEANT PHARMACEUTICALS INTERNATIONAL INC, Wednesday close $146.34, +2.50 pct premarket
The largest listed drugmaker in Canada swung to a fourth-quarter profit, driven by the acquisition of contact lens maker Bausch & Lomb Holdings Inc.
** CARLYLE GROUP LTD, Wednesday close $37.71, -3.71 pct premarket
A consortium involving two Maori tribes will bid against the private equity giant for Transpacific Industries Group Ltd’s New Zealand waste management business, a deal expected to fetch NZ$1 billion ($830.20 million), a person involved in the bid told Reuters.
The founders of the private equity firm each received $92.9 million in dividends and salaries in 2013, a regulatory filing showed, up from $57.6 million in 2012.
** APACHE CORP, Wednesday close $79.82
The energy company said on Wednesday that it will spend two-thirds of its exploration and production budget drilling more onshore oil wells in North America as it aims to improve returns and show steady production growth.
** COASTAL CONTACTS INC, Wednesday close $9.39, +18.53 pct premarket
Essilor International will buy the digital retailer of eyeglasses and contact lenses for C$430 million ($388.2 million), Coastal said on Thursday.
** WESTPORT INNOVATIONS INC, $16.91, +2.07 pct premarket
The supplier of engine and fuel system technologies, late on Wednesday, reported a fourth-quarter loss higher than the average analyst estimate and forecast full-year 2014 revenue to be between $175 million and $185 million.
At least two brokerages cut their price targets on the company’s stock.
** WENDY‘S CO $10.19, -0.98 pct premarket
The second-largest U.S. hamburger chain reported a lower-than-expected 6 percent fall in quarterly revenue and reaffirmed its 2014 adjusted profit forecast.
** TIVO INC, Wednesday close $12.83, +0.78 pct premarket
The digital video recorder maker reported a better-than-expected 20 percent rise in fourth-quarter revenue and said it expects to benefit from Comcast Corp’s $45.2 billion acquisition of Time Warner Cable. [ID:nL3N0LV50S}
** WILLIAMS PARTNERS LP, Wednesday close $49.79
** WILLIAMS COS INC, Wednesday close $41.22
The pipeline company said it would buy certain Canadian gas assets from Williams for about $1.2 billion to boost its natural gas liquid treating and processing business.
** WESTERN REFINING INC, Wednesday close $39.17
The company reported a fourth-quarter loss as the cost of the crude oil it processes rose from the year-earlier period when it posted a profit.
** TRINA SOLAR LTD, Wednesday close $14.99, +2.07 pct premarket
The Chinese solar panel maker said it had signed a contract with Fresh Fruits Co, a food storage and logistics company in Jordan, for a 2 megawatt rooftop solar power plant.
** AMC NETWORKS INC, Wednesday close $69.61
The cable TV network reported a 19 percent jump in quarterly revenue that handily beat Street estimates, helped by the popularity of “The Walking Dead.”
The fourth season of “The Walking Dead” was a hit, attracting 12.1 million viewers to its mid-season finale in December.
** PACIRA PHARMACEUTICALS INC, Wednesday close $78.05, +4.42 pct premarket
The drugmaker said a late-stage study showed its painkiller, Exparel, significantly reduced pain for a wider range of patients after surgery.
** KOHL‘S CORP, Wednesday close $54.44, +1.21 pct premarket
The department store chain said on Thursday that it expected modest sales gains in the new fiscal year and reported a lower fourth-quarter profit, hurt by markdowns during the holiday season and higher shipping costs in its e-commerce business.
Compiled by Shailaja Sharma in Bangalore, Editing by Don Sebastian