May 5, 2016 / 1:13 PM / a year ago

BUZZ-U.S. STOCKS ON THE MOVE-Alibaba, Fitbit, Zynga, Chesapeake

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U.S. stocks looked set to open higher on Thursday, after three straight days of losses, as oil prices rose for the first time this week, and investors awaited the monthly jobs data on Friday: Dow Jones industrial average futures were up 0.20 percent at 17,616, S&P 500 futures were up 0.22 percent at 2,051.5 and Nasdaq 100 futures were up 0.25 percent at 4,320.5.

** ALIBABA GROUP HOLDING LTD, Wednesday close $75.82, +5.41 pct premarket

China’s biggest e-commerce company reported a better-than-expected 39 percent rise in fourth-quarter revenue, helped by growth in gross merchandise volume.

** WHOLE FOODS MARKET INC, Wednesday close $28.51, +2.10 pct premarket

The natural and organic grocery chain on Wednesday reported better-than-expected quarterly earnings as it controlled costs while lowering prices in the face of stiff competition from a bevy of retail rivals.

** ZYNGA INC, Wednesday close $2.3, +13.48 pct premarket

The maker of the “FarmVille” games reported higher-than-expected bookings in the first quarter, helped by its slot machine-based games and “Words With Friends”.

** FITBIT INC, Wednesday close $17.1, -12.51 pct premarket

The wearable fitness device maker forecast profit for the current quarter well below analysts’ estimates as it spends more on sales and marketing to promote its Blaze smartwatch and Alta wrist band, overshadowing a strong first-quarter report.

** TESLA MOTORS INC, Wednesday close $222.56, +1.55 pct premarket

The electric car maker said it was stepping up production plans for its upcoming Model 3 mass-market sedan and would build a total of 500,000 all-electric vehicles in 2018, two years ahead of schedule, but warned that spending will ramp up in tandem.

** CHESAPEAKE ENERGY CORP, Wednesday close $5.65, +11.86 pct premarket

The second-largest U.S. natural gas producer reported a smaller quarterly loss and said it had struck a $470 million deal with Newfield Exploration Co for some assets in Oklahoma.

** MARATHON OIL CORP, Wednesday close $12.17, +4.35 pct premarket

The oil and gas producer posted a lower-than-expected first-quarter loss on Wednesday as cost cuts failed to offset the impact of low crude prices.

** AVON PRODUCTS INC, Wednesday close $4.3, -4.42 pct premarket

The cosmetics maker posted a surprise quarterly loss and reported a 16 percent drop in sales as demand fell further in Brazil and China.

** KELLOGG CO, Wednesday close $77.02, -2.36 pct premarket

The Corn Flakes and Cheez-It crackers maker reported a steeper-than-expected drop in quarterly sales as demand for its breakfast cereals and snacks remained sluggish in the United States, its biggest market.

** REGENERON PHARMACEUTICALS INC, Wednesday close $360.64, +5.37 pct premarket

The drugmaker reported better-than-expected quarterly revenue and raised the sales growth forecast for its best-selling drug Eylea.

** MERCK & CO INC, Wednesday close $54.81, +0.26 pct premarket

The drugmaker reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit, driven by higher sales of its diabetes and heart drugs.

** TRIPADVISOR INC, Wednesday close $63.13, -1.00 pct premarket

The travel website operator reported lower-than-expected profit and revenue in the first quarter, hurt by a 13.3 percent drop in income from referrals to third-party sites.

** KRAFT HEINZ CO, Wednesday close $79.98, +4.90 pct premarket

The maker of Kraft cheese, Heinz ketchup and Jell-O reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit as its costs fell and demand rose for its condiments and sauces.

** TRANSOCEAN LTD, Wednesday close $10.14, +2.17 pct premarket

The Switzerland-based offshore rig contractor on Wednesday posted a better-than-expected profit in the first quarter, helped by a nearly 35 percent decline in costs.

** FORD MOTOR CO, Wednesday close $13.31, +0.45 pct premarket

Ford’s vehicle sales in China fell 11 percent in April compared with the same month in 2015, the largest decline in comparable monthly sales in a year, as the world’s largest auto market continues to struggle with the slowing economy.

** TIME INC, Wednesday close $14.72

The magazine publisher reported better-than-expected quarterly revenue, helped mainly by acquisitions in its digital business.

** METLIFE INC, Wednesday close $43.94

The largest U.S. life insurer reported a quarterly operating profit that fell far short of expectations as income from investments in hedge funds and bonds declined.

** DISCOVERY COMMUNICATIONS INC, Wednesday close $26.59

The owner of the Discovery Channel and Animal Planet reported a 2 percent rise in quarterly revenue as advertising and distribution revenue improved at its U.S. networks.

** TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY FOX INC, Wednesday close $29.8

The owner of cable networks Fox News Channel and FX reported quarterly earnings in line with Wall Street’s expectations as the company’s cable channels brought in higher affiliate fees and ad revenue while its movie studio turned out the blockbuster film “Deadpool”.

** CHEVRON CORP, Wednesday close $100.59, +1.21 pct premarket

The oil producer appointed a new chief executive for its Australian operations after starting production at its $54 billion Gorgon liquefied natural gas (LNG) project, which last month ran into trouble after shipping one cargo.

** CANADIAN NATURAL RESOURCES LTD, Wednesday close $27.9

Canada’s largest independent petroleum producer reported a smaller quarterly loss as cost cuts paid off amid a slump in oil prices.

** TRIBUNE PUBLISHING CO, Wednesday close $11.02

** GANNETT CO INC, Wednesday close $16.27

Tribune Publishing said on Wednesday its board unanimously rejected Gannett’s unsolicited takeover offer and the company will instead proceed with a strategic plan to revive its print business and tap growth in digital content. (Compiled by Ramkumar Iyer in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D‘Silva)

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