CORRECTED-MARKET PULSE-3D Systems, Cognizant, Estee Lauder, Pernix Therapeutics
(Corrects 3D Systems item to say the company cut its adjusted profit forecast for the full year, not fourth quarter) U.S. stocks fell on Wednesday, following a report on the private labor market that was weaker than expected, though investors were also looking ahead to impending data on the services sector. The Dow Jones industrial average was down 0.29 percent at 15,400.42, the S&P 500 was down 0.48 percent at 1,746.82 and the Nasdaq Composite was down 0.71 percent at 4,002.954.
** 3D SYSTEMS CORP, $57.51, -24.09 pct
** EXONE CO, $39.01, -12.77 pct
** STRATASYS LTD, $105.73, -10.42 pct
** VOXELJET AG, $31.8, -6.55 pct
3D Systems, the largest 3D printer company, estimated its 2013 adjusted profit below its forecast, hurt by softer demand for its printed parts and consumer printers.
Shares of rivals Exone, Stratasys and Voxeljet also fell on the news.
** MICROSOFT CORP, $36.09, -0.72 pct
The world's largest software maker is betting a mix of old and young blood will revive the aging technology pioneer, but new Chief Executive Satya Nadella may find it tough to push change with co-founder Bill Gates and former CEO Steve Ballmer breathing down his neck.
** BOEING CO, $119.51, -2.07 pct
The company said on Tuesday that it saw no bubble in the market for 737 jetliners and that production could rise to as many as 60 aircraft a month at the current factory in Renton, Washington, though production might not go that high.
** LAZARD LTD, $43.47, +1.12 pct
The investment bank and asset manager reported a better-than-expected 35 percent rise in fourth-quarter profit as merger advisory revenue rose in a recovering M&A market.
** RADIAN GROUP INC, $14.7, +2.58 pct
The biggest U.S. private mortgage insurer reported a quarterly profit after four straight losses as fewer homeowners defaulted on their loans in a recovering housing market. Mortgage insurers have been writing more profitable insurance policies as fewer people default on home loans, largely helped by a recovery in the U.S. housing market.
** MERCK & CO INC, $54.57, +1.98 pct
The second-biggest U.S. drugmaker quarterly profit and sales just missed expectations as its medicines faced competition from cheaper generics, but shares rose 1.5 percent on enthusiasm for newly announced cancer-drug partnerships with rival U.S. companies.
The company plans to test its closely followed immuno-oncology drug MK-3475 in combination with medicines being developed by rival drugmakers Pfizer Inc, Amgen Inc , Incyte Corp.
** COGNIZANT TECHNOLOGY SOLUTIONS CORP, $90.42, -6.79 pct
The IT services provider forecast a slower-than-expected revenue growth for the current fiscal, after reporting a fourth-quarter results that matched market estimates.
** LAS VEGAS SANDS CORP, $72.09, -3.92 pct
** WYNN RESORTS LTD, $205.69, -3.68 pct
** MGM RESORTS INTERNATIONAL, $23.2, -4.13 pct
** MELCO CROWN ENTERTAINMENT LTD, $36.94, -6.88 pct
Gaming revenues in Macau, the world's casino capital, grew at their slowest pace in 15 months in January, raking in a lower-than-expected 28.7 billion patacas ($3.6 billion), due to tempered spending by Chinese visitors ahead of a national holiday.
** ESTEE LAUDER COS INC, $64.74, -6.43 pct
The beauty products maker reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit, helped by strong sales in the United States and the United Kingdom, as well as in its luxury and makeup artist brands.
** ARROW ELECTRONICS INC, $48.24, -2.57 pct
The technology products distributor forecast first-quarter revenue largely below Wall Street estimates.
"We expect no meaningful change to the markets we serve in the first quarter of 2014," the company said in a statement.
** REGULUS THERAPEUTICS INC, $8.22, -4.75 pct
The drugmaker said Sanofi SA increased its stake in the company through an additional $10 million common stock investment at $7.67 per share. The companies also renewed their alliance to develop and market gene-based therapies for specific orphan diseases and cancers.
** HALOZYME THERAPEUTICS INC, $12.97, -5.88 pct
The drugmaker said its public offering of 7.7 million common shares was priced at $13 per share. All the shares in the offering are being sold by Halozyme.
** CLICKSOFTWARE TECHNOLOGIES LTD, $9.17, +6.26 pct
The Israeli company, which provides workforce management software and services, forecast full-year results above analysts' estimates, citing a "strong pipeline of new business opportunities for the year ahead."
** CORINTHIAN COLLEGES INC, $1.33, -5.67 pct
The for-profit education company said it was reducing marketing and admissions spending for its online programs and that it expected total new enrollments to fall in the current quarter, after reporting a 14.4 percent decline in new enrollments for the second quarter.
** PERNIX THERAPEUTICS HOLDINGS INC, $2.86, +36.84 pct
The specialty pharmaceutical company appointed Doug Drysdale as chief executive and said a group of institutional investors agreed to buy $65 million of 8 percent convertible senior notes due 2019, which would provide the company capital to buy specialty products for its portfolio.
Drysdale replaces Mike Pearce, who resigned from his post as CEO.
Pernix also said it would pay about $1.3 million to former shareholders of Cypress Pharmaceuticals Inc, which it bought in 2012, to settle legal claims.
** C.H. ROBINSON WORLDWIDE INC, $53.085, -9.47 pct
The third-party provider of freight transport reported a lower-than-expected quarterly profit, as higher costs per mile led to a lower truckload net revenue margin. The truckload business accounts for more than half of C.H. Robinson's sales.
** MARINE HARVEST, $11.28, -3.75 pct
The world's biggest fish farmer plans to boost output this year to meet rising demand for salmon from health-conscious consumers and generate cash to fund acquisitions and increase payouts to shareholders. The company, which controls more than a fifth of the global farmed fish trade, said it wanted to increase its market share as customers from Asia to America seek what they perceive to be a healthier, high-protein alternative to meat.
** OMEROS CORP, $11.86, +5.42 pct
The drugmaker said the U.S. Food and Drug Administration had granted fast-track status to the company's experimental treatment for cognitive impairment in patients with Huntington's disease, a genetic disorder that affects the brain.
Fast-track status helps expedite the review of drugs to treat serious diseases and fill unmet medical needs. Drugs that are eligible for the designation are likely to receive a priority review.
** HUMANA INC, $93.5, -4.07 pct
The U.S. health insurer said it had received 202,000 applications through Jan. 31 for 2014 Obamacare health insurance plans in the 14 states where it offers them.
Humana made the disclosure as it reported a fourth-quarter loss due to a $243 million charge to set aside financial reserves for a group of long-term care policies that it no longer sells.
** CVS CAREMARK CORP, $65.19, -1.39 pct
The No.2 U.S. drugstore chain said it would stop selling tobacco products at its 7,600 stores by October, becoming the first U.S. drugstore chain to take cigarettes off the shelf. Public health experts called the decision by the company a precedent-setting step that could pressure other stores to follow suit.
** MYRIAD GENETICS INC, $30.04, +10.52 pct
** SAFEGUARD SCIENTIFICS INC, $18.09, +2.55 pct
Molecular diagnostics company Myriad Genetics said it planned to buy Crescendo Bioscience for $270 million to enter the autoimmune market, and raised its full-year forecast.
Venture capital and private equity firm Safeguard Scientifics, which said it has a 13 percent primary ownership position in Crescendo, said it would get about $40 million in aggregate cash proceeds from the deal.
** SYNGENTA, $67.81, -3.13 pct
The company is to step up cost-cutting to save $1 billion a year by 2018 after the world's largest maker of crop chemicals reported an 11 percent fall in profit for last year.
** TABLEAU SOFTWARE INC, $91.99, +15.81 pct
The data analysis software maker forecast better-than-expected current-quarter revenue after reporting quarterly results that handily beat analysts' estimates.
** FORD MOTOR CO., $14.59, -1.88 pct
The automaker will halt production at its Romanian car factory for four days in February because of low demand, officials of the company were quoted as saying.
** TESLA MOTORS INC, $172.715, -3.37 pct
The luxury U.S. electric carmaker is taking a bold step in China to win over clients and cachet by curbing the markup to just half of what some of its rivals can command. Though it risks relegating its brand to a lower tier, Tesla's marketing strategy could prove a model for other imported brands, which have come under fire from China state media and regulators for allegedly ripping off shoppers with inflated prices.
** HEWLETT PACKARD, $28.05, -0.99 pct
The company said Autonomy, the software firm it bought in 2011, overstated profits at one of its main British units by 81 percent in the year before it was sold in Britain's biggest ever technology deal.
Separately, two of Hewlett-Packard most powerful executives, until they were sidelined by CEO Meg Whitman, are preparing to leave the company in the coming weeks, several sources say. The departures of two HP veterans who pre-dated Whitman may strengthen her grip on the company, midway through a five-year plan to try and turn around the once-dominant Silicon Valley computing icon.
** COVANCE INC, $96.79, +2.67 pct
The research services provider reported a better-than-expected 19 percent jump in quarterly adjusted profit as it gained from higher investments in later stages of drug development by pharma companies.
** GENWORTH FINANCIAL INC, $14.75, +1.51 pct
The life and mortgage insurer reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit as a recovery in housing markets helped its U.S. mortgage insurance business.
** USANA HEALTH SCIENCES INC, $65.21, +11.80 pct
The skincare products company reported better-than-expected results for the fourth quarter on Tuesday, helped by growth in sales, lower expenses and a lower effective tax rate.
USANA also forecast 2014 results above analysts' estimates.
** GENOMIC HEALTH INC, $26.91, -8.78 pct
The genomic-based diagnostic tests maker posted a quarterly loss mainly due to higher operating expenses and the company forecast weak revenue for 2014.
At least three brokerages cut their price targets on the company's stock, citing the full-year forecast, which was below analysts' estimates.
** KEYW HOLDING CORP, $15.49, -2.27 pct
The company, which provides cybersecurity products and services to U.S. defense, intelligence and national security agencies, reported fourth-quarter revenue below analysts' estimates, hurt by the U.S. government shutdown in October last year.
** QUINSTREET INC, $7.21, -6.85 pct
J.P. Morgan Securities cut its price target on the online marketing company's stock to $7 from $8, after Quinstreet forecast third-quarter revenue below Wall Street expectations and reported lower-than-expected second-quarter revenue.
** SAREPTA THERAPEUTICS INC, $23.63, +2.92 pct
The company said its drug to treat a rare muscular disorder in young boys stabilized respiratory muscle function in patients at 120 weeks of treatment.
Sarepta said data from the mid-stage study in patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy showed an increase in the pressure of inhalation and exhalation, which measure diaphragm muscle weakness.
Sarepta said in October 2012 that the trial met its main goal of increasing the level of a key protein after 48 weeks of treatment. The study was extended to monitor the drug's safety and efficacy.
** BILL BARRETT CORP, $23.78, -14.12 pct
Global Hunter Securities analysts cut their rating on the oil and gas producer's stock to "neutral" from "accumulate," citing the company's weak oil production forecast for 2014.
Bill Barrett said it expected to produce 11-12.2 million barrels of oil equivalent (mmboe) this year. That forecast falls below the company's estimated production of 14.5 mmboe for 2013.
The company also forecast a 30 percent growth in 2014 oil output. Analysts said the forecast was below their estimate of a 50 percent growth in oil production.
** AMERICAN FINANCIAL GROUP INC, $53.42, -0.47 pct
** NATIONAL INTERSTATE CORP, $28.89, +30.31 pct
American Financial said its insurance unit had commenced a tender offer to acquire all of the outstanding shares of property and casualty insurer National Interstate's common stock for $28 per share in cash.
** XOOM CORP, $25.93, -7.82 pct
The digital money transfer company reported a quarterly profit on Monday, but forecast first-quarter revenue below Wall Street estimates.
The company said it expected first-quarter revenue of $33 million-$34 million. Analysts on average were expecting $34.2 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
** EPIZYME INC, $28.91, -3.63 pct
The drug developer said its public offering of 4.5 million common shares was priced at $29.25 per share before underwriting discounts.
Epizyme said it was selling 3 million shares in the offering and certain existing stockholders were selling about 1.5 million shares.
** ELECTRO SCIENTIFIC INDUSTRIES INC, $9.36, -9.91 pct
The supplier of laser-based products for the microtechnology industry reported a bigger-than-expected quarterly loss due to a delay in orders and overcapacity in some of its businesses. (Compiled by Natalie Grover in Bangalore; Editing by Kirti Pandey)