Sept 25 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures were little changed on Wednesday, following four days of losses on the S&P 500 and Dow, as investors grew increasingly concerned about budget and debt negotiations in Washington. S&P 500 futures fell 3 points, Dow Jones industrial average futures rose 3 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures lost 6 points.
** ONCOTHYREON INC, Tuesday close $1.80, up 23 pct premarket
German drugmaker Merck KGaA will conduct new tests on an experimental lung cancer vaccine which failed a previous late-stage clinical trial, it said. The drug, licensed from U.S. biotech firm Oncothyreon, will be tested on patients with locally advanced Stage III non-small cell lung cancer, which cannot be surgically removed, unchanged from the previous trial called START, the firm said.
** MAKO SURGICAL CORP, Tuesday close $16.17
Medical device maker Stryker Corp will buy the smaller peer for about $1.65 billion to gain access to Mako’s technology for robot-assisted orthopedic surgery.
** COPART INC, Tuesday close $34.09, down 8.5 pct premarket
The online auctioneer of vehicles said it will not convert into a real estate investment trust, more than a year after the company started evaluating such a move. Copart also reported a fourth-quarter profit that missed Wall Street expectations by 8 cents.
** NOBLE CORP, Tuesday close $37.93, up 4 pct premarket
The offshore drilling contractor unveiled on Tuesday a long-planned spin-off of older rigs into a new company that may make an initial public offering next year, as Noble seeks a premium valuation for its best assets.
** BROCADE COMMUNICATIONS SYSTEMS INC, Tuesday close $8.18, up 4 pct premarket
The network equipment maker said it raised its share buyback program to $1 billion from $308 million.
** AAR CORP, Tuesday close $29.93, down 10 pct after market
The aerospace parts and systems maker reported a lower first-quarter profit as sales fell in its technology products business. The company reported sales of $514.5 million, below analysts’ expectations of $542.1 million.
** LANDEC CORP, Tuesday close $13.57, down 12 pct after market
The polymer maker reported lower-than-expected first-quarter earnings as it changed the timing of income recognition from its Windset Farms. Landec said about 6 cents per share have been shifted from its first quarter to the remaining three quarters.
** CARNIVAL CORP, Tuesday close $34.54, down 5 pct premarket
The world’s largest cruise operator warned on Tuesday it could report an adjusted loss for the current quarter, after posting a 30 percent fall in third-quarter profit due to a series of headline-grabbing mishaps on its cruise ships.
J.P.Morgan cut its price target on the stock to $32 from $34, while Susquehanna International Group cut its target to $40 from $43. Bofa Merrill Lynch cut its rating on the stock to “neutral,” according to theflyonthewall.com.
** DYNAVAX TECHNOLOGIES CORP, Tuesday close $1.19, up 5 pct after market
The Vaccine published a commentary from two doctors emphasizing that Dynavax’s hepatitis B vaccine had an adjuvant, an agent to boost immune response, which can be important for immunization against hepatitis B. The journal also published late-stage trial results showing the safety and viral response of the vaccine, Heplisav.
** ZOGENIX INC, Tuesday close $1.89, up 9 pct after market
The drugmaker was awarded a $20.7 million contract from a unit of the U.S. Department of Defense for various medical and surgical products. ()
** AUTOZONE INC, Tuesday close $414.31, up 1 pct premarket
The largest U.S. auto parts retailer reported a 15 percent rise in quarterly profit mainly due to higher margins.
** AMAZON.COM INC, Tuesday close $314.13, up 0.3 pct premarket
The world’s largest Internet retailer unveiled two new high-definition tablets on Tuesday with a unique on-screen helpdesk feature it hopes will give it an advantage over devices from rivals Apple Inc and Google Inc.
** J.C. PENNEY CO INC, Tuesday close $11.90
The retailer plans to hire about 35,000 temporary workers for the coming holiday season, roughly the same level as in 2011, before it changed its pricing strategy and did away with most coupons and sales events, a spokeswoman said on Tuesday.
** DOW CHEMICAL CO, Tuesday close $39.11
Dow has signed a deal to invest up to $120 million in developing 16 shale gas wells along with Argentinas state-run energy company YPF in the South American country’s vast Vaca Muerta formation, YPF said on Tuesday.
** ASCENA RETAIL GROUP INC, Tuesday close $17.32, up 16 pct after market
The womens apparel retailer said its fourth-quarter profit more than tripled, comfortably beating Wall Street estimates, as e-commerce sales surged and gross margins improved with fewer markdowns.
** CLOVIS ONCOLOGY, Tuesday close $73.52, down 13 pct after market
The developer of cancer drugs that had been looking for a potential buyer, is finding no takers, according to a report by Bloomberg, citing a person with knowledge of the matter.
** JPMORGAN CHASE & CO, Tuesday close $50.32
The company is facing several investigations into its mortgage practices, is seeking a global settlement with U.S. government authorities in multiple jurisdictions, a person familiar with the matter said on Tuesday.
** BED BATH AND BEYOND INC, Tuesday close $74.81
The U.S. home goods chain posts second-quarter results that will give investors a read on consumer demand for discretionary goods. The company has been investing heavily in e-commerce but this has been a drag on margins. (reporting AMC)
** JABIL CIRCUIT INC, Tuesday close $23.71
Quarterly profit at the contract manufacturer is expected to be stable compared with the same period a year ago, but may fall short of Wall Street estimates mainly due to the sudden announcement of the business sale by Blackberry, one of its top customers. (reporting AMC)