InPlay from Briefing.com

6:14 pm Berkshire Hathaway company Johns Manville announces it will increase its glass microfiber capacity by early 2016 at its plant in Waterville, Ohio. (BRK.B) :  

5:55 pm Peabody Energy sees Q2 adjusted EBITDA and adjusted EPS below original targeted range due to weather-related shipment issues in the Southern Powder River Basin and lower seaborne coal pricing (BTU) : Co announces that second quarter 2015 Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted EPS are now expected to be below the original targeted range due to weather-related shipment issues in the Southern Powder River Basin and lower seaborne coal pricing.

  • Peabody expects a timing-related impact of approximately $40 million in the second quarter as a result of a series of substantial rain and flash flooding events in the Southern Powder River Basin primarily in June that reduced production by 5.0 to 5.5 million tons. Peabody has largely resumed normal production levels, and is scheduling to make up the deferred shipments in the third and fourth quarters. 
  • The company was also impacted by approximately $20 million from the effects of lower pricing on Australian metallurgical coal, with approximately half related to spot coal sales during the quarter and half related to reduced coal inventory valuation due to benchmark third quarter settlements. Spot metallurgical coal prices declined 15 percent during the quarter before increasing in recent weeks.
Regarding other factors expected to affect second quarter results, in early June Peabody announced a reduction of approximately 250 positions, or 25 percent of its corporate and regional staff, with expected annual savings of $40 to $45 million when fully implemented later this year. In addition, the company has initiated actions to reduce approximately 250 employee and contractor positions at multiple metallurgical and thermal coal mines in Australia. Peabody expects to incur an estimated $20 to $25 million in second quarter 2015 charges related to these activities, and these charges were not included in the company's previous financial targets.

5:54 pm Air T subsidiary awarded contract in excess of $32 mln for the supply of 2200 aircraft deicing vehicles to American Airlines (AIRT) : Co announces that its subsidiary Global Ground Support received a contract award in excess of $32 million for the supply of Global's Ultimate 2200 aircraft deicing vehicles to American Airlines. The deicers will be equipped with Global's MIDAS vehicle telemetry systems that will provide American Airlines with the latest in glycol fluid reduction technology. Deliveries are expected to be completed in November 2015.

5:47 pm Anchor BanCorp Wisconsin announces operational efficiency measures expected to result in annual cost savings of ~$5.4 mln (ABCW) : Co announces anticipated financial results of the operational efficiency measures introduced previously. As the Company announced on April 9, 2015, AnchorBank, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Company, has taken several actions to address and improve overall operational efficiency. Management anticipates that these actions will result in an annual net cost savings related to reduced compensation, occupancy and other operating costs of approximately $5.4 million. The actions will be completed by the third quarter of 2015.

  • As a result of these operational efficiency measures, AnchorBank expects to incur one-time costs of $3.7 million, composed primarily of employment severance and asset disposition costs. During the quarter ending June 30, 2015, $2.3 million will be recorded with the remaining $1.4 million recorded in the quarter ended September 30, 2015. An offset to the one-time costs will be a recorded gain in the quarter ending June 30, 2015 for the sale of the Appleton branch building of $1.4 million.

5:31 pm Trimas completes spin-off of its Cequent business, which has been renamed Horizon Global and will begin trading tomorrow on the NYSE under the ticker HZN (TRS) :  

5:30 pm Asbury Automotive acquires Mike Davidson Ford in Jacksonville, Florida (ABG) : Mike Davidson Ford generates ~$90 mln in revenues annually. The new dealership will be rebranded as Coggin Ford and brings the number of Asbury stores in Florida to 24, along with three Q auto locations.

5:24 pm Natl Hlth Investors enters into amended $800 mln senior unsecured credit facilities that include a $550 mln revolving credit facility and existing $250 mln term loans (NHI) : The amended credit facilities provide for: (1) a $550 million unsecured, revolving credit facility that matures in June 2020 (inclusive of an embedded 1-year extension option) with interest at 150 basis points over LIBOR; and (2) three existing term loans which remain in place totaling $250 million, maturing in June 2020 and bearing interest at 175 basis points over LIBOR, with a notional amount of $130 million being fixed at 3.91% until 2020 with an interest rate swap agreement, a notional amount of $40 million being fixed at 3.29% until 2019, and a notional amount of $80 million being fixed at 3.86% until 2020.

5:22 pm Realty Income announces new $2.25 bln unsecured credit facility to replace its previous $1.5 bln unsecured credit facility (O) : Co announces it has closed a new $2.25 billion unsecured credit facility to replace its previous $1.5 billion unsecured credit facility. The new credit facility is comprised of a $2.0 billion unsecured revolving credit facility and a $250 million five-year unsecured term loan.

  • Under the terms of the new revolving credit facility, total funds available are $2.0 billion, plus an additional $1.0 billion accordion expansion feature. The initial term of the new revolving credit facility is four years maturing in June 2019, plus two six-month extensions that can be exercised at the company's option.
  • The new $250 million unsecured term loan matures in June 2020.

5:21 pm Xerium Tech announces planned closure of its PMC facility in Warwick, Quebec Canada (XRM) : Co announces that it has initiated closure proceedings with the representative union officials at its PMC facility in Warwick, Quebec Canada. Production will be transferred to Xerium's lower-cost plants outside of North America.

5:20 pm Cheniere Energy Partners announces Board has made a positive Final Investment Decision with respect to Train 5 of the Sabine Pass liquefaction project (CQP) : Co announces that its Board of Directors has made a positive Final Investment Decision with respect to Train 5 of the Sabine Pass liquefaction project in Cameron Parish, Louisiana, and has issued a notice to proceed with construction to Bechtel Oil, Gas and Chemicals, Inc. The Sabine Pass Liquefaction Project is being designed for up to six liquefaction trains, each with nominal production capacity of approximately 4.5 million tonnes per annum. Train 5 is expected to commence operations as early as 2018.

5:05 pm National Presto Indust. announced the U.S. Army awarded its AMTEC Corporation subsidiary two contracts to develop the next generation of 40MM training (NPK) : The value of the low velocity engineering development award is $2.99 million, while the high velocity award is $2.985 million. The development performance periods for the two contracts extend through the first quarter of 2017. Each contract has three production option years beginning in 2018. If exercised, the first year would be at a low initial rate, while the last two years would be at a full production rates. At the end of the development period, the Army will determine the round in each category that provides the best value, at which point it will decide whether to exercise the production options under the applicable contracts.

5:04 pm Ballard Power announces proposed public offering of common shares, size not disclosed (BLDP) : Co announces its intention to offer its common shares in an underwritten public offering. Cowen and Company is acting as the sole bookrunner for the Offering. Ballard expects to use the net proceeds from the Offering for working capital and other general corporate purposes, including the acquisition of, or investment in, companies, technologies, products or assets that complement Ballard's business.

5:03 pm Golar LNG reaches an agreement with Perenco for the floating liquefied natural gas export project in Cameroon (GLNG) : The Tolling Agreement which defines the material commercial terms and conditions for the project is now subject to finalisation with SNH and government approval. Similarly, the Midstream Gas Convention setting out the regulatory and fiscal regime governing the FLNG operations in Cameroon is being progressed in parallel with the Tolling Agreement and is also now subject to finalisation with the government. It is anticipated that final approval by all parties (including the government in Cameroon) for the Tolling Agreement and the Midstream Gas Convention will take place late Q3, 2015.

  • The project in Cameroon is expected to deliver an EBITDA for Golar in the first full year of operation, based on the utilisation of 2 of the available 4 liquefaction trains, in the range of $170 million to $300 million, with a flexible tolling structure which correlates to Brent crude oil prices ranging from a floor of $60/bbl to a cap of $102/bbl. The marketing of LNG from the project remains the responsibility of Perenco and SNH.

5:01 pm ConnectOne Bancorp completes private placement of $50 mln in aggregate principal amount of fixed-to-floating rate subordinated notes (CNOB) : The Notes are non-callable for five years, have a stated maturity of July 1, 2025, and bear interest at a fixed rate of 5.75% per year, from and including June 30, 2015 to, but excluding July 1, 2020. From and including July 1, 2020 to the maturity date or early redemption date, the interest rate will reset quarterly to a level equal to the then current three-month LIBOR rate plus 393 basis points. The Company plans to use the net proceeds from the sale of the Notes to redeem the $11.25 million outstanding of its Senior Noncumulative Perpetual Preferred Stock issued in 2011 to the U.S. Treasury under the Small Business Lending Fund Program, and for general corporate purposes

5:00 pm Now announces entry into an agreement to purchase Odessa Pumps and Equipment; terms not disclosed (DNOW) : Co announces that it has entered into an agreement to purchase Odessa Pumps and Equipment, Inc. Terms of the all-cash transaction, which remains subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approval, were not disclosed. Founded in 1980, Odessa Pumps and Equipment is a distributor of pumps and equipment for the Oil & Gas and Municipal and Wastewater markets. The company manages a distribution business of approximately 13 sales and operations locations across Texas, New Mexico and Oklahoma. Odessa employs approximately 300 employees.

4:47 pm Preferred Apt. Communities announces acquisition of Citypark View, a newly constructed 284-unit Class A multifamily community in Charlotte, North Carolina, for ~$32.7 mln (APTS) :  

4:46 pm Aug WTI crude oil initially drops $0.53/barrel following the API oil storage data, which showed a build of 1.9 mln barrels (last week showed a draw of 3.2 mln); Aug crude oil is now +1.2% at $59.05/barrel (:COMDX) :  

4:36 pm Pennsylvania R.E.I.T. announces entry into a modification and extension of its $400 mln unsecured revolving credit facility and a new term loan (PEI) : Co announces it has entered into a modification and extension of its $400 million unsecured Revolving Credit Facility and a new Term Loan offering increased flexibility and reduced rates to help fund the Company's growth objectives. The Amended 2013 Revolving Facility replaces the 2013 Revolving Facility. Key terms of the Amended 2013 Revolving Facility are: The available amount is $400 million and includes an accordion feature up to $600 million; The initial term is three years and the Company has the right to two one-year extension options. Key terms of the 2015 5-Year Term Loan are: The available amount is $150 million; The term is 5 years.

In addition to these two significant transactions, the Company entered into a 10-year, non-recourse mortgage loan secured by Patrick Henry Mall in Newport News, VA. The loan amount is $96.2 million and carries an interest rate of 4.352%, replacing mortgage loan balances of $84.4 million carrying an interest rate of 6.34%.

4:31 pm Progessive Waste announces it amended and restated its principal loan agreement resulting, resulting in a re-pricing of its existing $2.35 bln senior secured credit facility (BIN) : The amended credit facility holds the amount of the Company's revolver constant at U.S. $1.85 billion, but replaces the existing U.S. $500 million term loan B with a term loan A.

4:31 pm EndoChoice completes the refinancing of its outstanding debt and closed on a new $58 mln secured credit facility with Midcap Financial and Silicon Valley Bank (GI) : The new facility consists of a $43 million term loan and a $15 million revolving line of credit. In addition to increasing the overall size of EndoChoice's borrowing availability, the new facility lowers the cost of the Company's debt and conserves cash during the first three years.

4:31 pm Insulet announces the resignation of COO Patrick Ryan, to pursue other interests (PODD) :

  • Mark Licari has been promoted to Vice President of Global Manufacturing and Operations, effective immediately. 
  • David Colleran, J.D. joined Insulet on June 29th and after a short transition, will assume the role of Vice President and General Counsel, succeeding R. Anthony Diehl, who has resigned.
  • Patrick Ryan, former Chief Operating Officer, has resigned to pursue other interests.

4:31 pm Six Flags enters into a new 7-year $700 million senior secured term loan facility and a 5-year $250 million senior secured revolving credit facility (SIX) : The proceeds will be used to refinance the $569 million outstanding Term Loan B under the company's prior credit facilities and for general corporate purposes, including share repurchases and payment of refinancing fees.

  • The company's borrowing rate for the new term loan will be the same as its former term loan, which is LIBOR plus 275 basis points with a 75 basis-point floor on the LIBOR rate

4:30 pm NIKE announce ownership and governance actions; Phil Knight to transfer shares into LLC; CEO Mark Parker recommended as future chairman and CEO as part of planned transition (NKE) : Co announces announces actions, including the transfer of ownership of Phil Knight's shares to an LLC. Knight and the NIKE Board of Directors also announced the start of a succession planning process that will conclude in the appointment of NIKE's next Chairman likely sometime in 2016. Knight has informed the NIKE Board of Directors of his recommendation to have CEO Mark Parker succeed him as Chairman. Further, the co also named Travis Knight as the newest member of NIKE's Board of Directors. Phil Knight says he has created Swoosh LLC to hold the majority of his shares of NIKE Class A Common Stock. Knight has contributed 128.5 mln shares to the entity representing approximately 15% of the combined Class A and B shares.

In a 13D filing Swoosh, LLC disclosed a 15.0% active stake in NIKE.

4:30 pm FTI Consulting enters into a five-year, $550.0 mln senior secured revolving line of credit; reaffirms FY15 EPS guidance (FCN) : Co currently intends to retire its $400.0 mln of 6.75% Notes due 2020, funded by a combination of ~$275.0 mln of borrowings under the Credit Facility and ~$140.0 mln of cash on hand.

Co also reaffirmed its FY15 Adj. EPS guidance of $1.95-2.20

4:28 pm Xerox completes sale of its IT Outsourcing business; will use the the net after-tax proceeds of ~$850 mln to repurchase common stock and fund acquisitions, as previously announced (XRX) :  

4:20 pm iRadimed announces that the plaintiffs in a putative class action lawsuit have filed a notice of appeal (IRMD) : The co announced that the plaintiffs in a putative class action lawsuit filed on September 10, 2014 in the U.S. District Court of Florida have filed a notice of appeal from the recent judgment entered upon the District Court's dismissal of all claims on May 26, 2015. iRadimed says it intends to continue to vigorously defend against plaintiff's claims.

4:16 pm AeroVironment beats by $0.14, reports revs in-line; guides FY16 revs in-line (AVAV) :

  • Reports Q4 (Apr) earnings of $0.31 per share, including a $0.01 loss from an equity investment, $0.14 better than the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.17; revenues rose 17.7% year/year to $86.5 mln vs the $85.71 mln consensus. 
    • The increase in revenue resulted from increased sales in our Unmanned Aircraft Systems (:UAS) segment of $18.7 mln offset by a decrease in sales in our Efficient Energy Systems (EES) segment of $5.7 mln.
  • Co issues in-line guidance for FY16, sees FY16 revs of $260-280 mln vs. $277.34 mln Capital IQ Consensus; with a gross profit margin of between 36-37.5%. Planned increases in strategic R&D and SG&A investments for Commercial UAS in fiscal 2016 may largely offset operating profit in the current fiscal year. 
    • Funded backlog -1.8% YoY at $64.7 mln,

4:16 pm New Source Energy announces that Charles Lee Reynolds III has retired as director on the BoD of New Source Energy Partners GP, LLC, New Source's general partner, effective immediately (NSLP) : Co announced that Charles Lee Reynolds III has retired from his position as a director on the Board of Directors of New Source Energy Partners GP, LLC, New Source's general partner, effective immediately. Additionally, the Partnership announced that Richard D. Finley has been appointed to the Board of its general partner, effective immediately. Mr. Finley will step down from his role as Chief Financial Officer of the Partnership's general partner concurrent with his appointment to the Board.

4:16 pm TripAdvisor announces entry into a new $1 bln five-year credit facility, replacing its existing $600 mln credit facility (TRIP) : Under a new credit agreement, among other things, the company has access to (i) a $1 billion unsecured revolving credit facility, (ii) an interest rate on borrowings and commitment fees based on the company's and its subsidiaries' consolidated leverage ratio and (iii) uncommitted incremental revolving loan and term loan facilities, subject to compliance with leverage covenants and other conditions. The $1 billion credit facility will be used for general corporate purposes. Thirteen financial institutions participated in the credit facility. In connection with the company's entrance into the new credit agreement, the company repaid in full and terminated its existing credit agreement.

4:15 pm PartnerRe: Exor (EXOSF) to host an Investor Meeting on Tuesday, July 7, 2015 for all PartnerRe shareholders to to discuss its all-cash, binding offer of $137.50 (PRE) : EXOR therefore continues to urge PartnerRe shareholders to vote the GOLD proxy card AGAINST all three proposals related to the AXIS transaction and asks shareholders not to sign or return any WHITE proxy cards they receive from PartnerRe.

4:14 pm World Point Terminals reports the retirement of CFO Steven Twele, effective October 1, 2015; co appoints Jonathan Affleck as CFO, effective the day of Twele's retirement (WPT) : Twele will continue as a director and consultant to the Partnership and its controlling shareholders, including assisting in the orderly transition of his responsibilities. Co also announced that Jonathan Affleck was appointed by the Board of Directors as the general partner's vice president and chief financial officer, effective October 1, 2015. Prior to joining the Partnership, Affleck was an associate in the New York office of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP & Affiliates from January 2011 through March 2013

4:11 pm IGI Labs reports submitting its fifth abbreviated NDA of 2015, with the US FDA; brings total pending submissions to twenty seven (IG) :  

4:11 pm Closing Market Summary: Stocks Post Modest Gains With Focus Remaining on Greece (:WRAPX) : The stock market ended the final June session on a higher note, but that did not stop the S&P 500 (+0.3%) from registering a 2.1% loss for the month.

Equity indices spent the first three hours of the day in a steady retreat from their opening highs with the S&P 500 making a momentary appearance in the red after German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that Germany cannot consider new proposals from Greece until after Sunday's referendum.

However, the benchmark index climbed to a fresh high during afternoon action with the move taking place amid reports Greece could cancel its Sunday referendum if negotiations are resumed and an agreement could be reached on required prior actions. To that point, Eurogroup Chief Jeroen Dijsselbloem acknowledged the receipt of a new proposal from the Greek government with the offer set to be reviewed at tomorrow's Eurogroup meeting.

The speculation about a potential cancellation of the referendum had little impact on the euro, which spent the afternoon near its session low reached after Ms. Merkel's comments. The single currency slid 0.6% against the dollar to 1.1145.

Meanwhile, Treasuries spent the afternoon near their flat lines after erasing their overnight losses. The 10-yr note ended just below its flat line with its yield higher by a basis point at 2.34%, which represented a 22-basis point increase since the end of May.

Seven sectors settled in the green with energy (+0.6%) and consumer discretionary (+0.5%) showing relative strength throughout the day. The energy sector rallied behind crude oil, which climbed 1.9% to $59.44/bbl. Despite today's outperformance, the energy sector still lost 3.6% for the month.

Similar to energy, eight other sectors finished the month in negative territory while the consumer discretionary sector (+0.5%) added 0.5% thanks to today's outperformance. Homebuilders represented an area of relative strength in June with iShares Dow Jones US Home Construction ETF (ITB 27.45, +0.02) adding 0.1% today to extend its monthly gain to 3.1%.

Elsewhere, the top-weighted technology sector (+0.2%) spent the day just behind the broader market as several large cap names struggled while high-beta chipmakers fared relatively well. The PHLX Semiconductor Index gained 0.4% with all but eight components ending in the green. Despite today's strength, the Semiconductor Index lost 8.7% in June.

The underperformance among large cap tech names did not stop the Nasdaq Composite (+0.6%) from ending ahead of the broader market as biotechnology displayed relative strength. The iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF (IBB 368.97, +8.40) gained 2.3% while the health care sector (+0.4%) settled ahead of other countercyclical groups.

Today's trading volume was heavier than average as quarter-end flows contributed to the increased activity with more than a billion shares changing hands at the NYSE floor.

Economic data included Chicago PMI, Consumer Confidence, and Case-Shiller 20-city Index:

  • The Chicago PMI increased to 49.4 in June from 46.2 in May while the Briefing.com consensus expected an increase to 50.0 
    • According to the report, manufacturing activity in the Chicago region has contracted in 4 out of the last 5 months 
    • The contraction in production eased in June, as the related index increased to 49.8 from 45.8 in May 
    • Unfortunately, the contraction may not end next month as the Order Backlogs Index fell to 41.0 in June from 47.3 in May, which was the lowest reading since September 2009 
  • The Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index increased to 101.4 in June from a downwardly revised 94.6 (from 95.4) in May while the Briefing.com consensus expected an increase to 97.5 
    • The Expectations Index increased to 94.6 in June from 86.2 in May while the Present Situation Index rose to 111.6 from 109.5 
  • The Case-Shiller 20-city Home Price Index for April rose 4.9% against a 5.6% increase expected by the Briefing.com consensus 
    • This followed the previous month's increase of 5.0% 
Tomorrow, the weekly MBA Mortgage Index will be released at 7:00 ET while June Challenger Job Cuts will be reported at 7:30 ET. The ADP Employment Report for June (Briefing.com consensus 220K) will be released at 8:15 ET while May Construction Spending (consensus 0.3%) and June ISM Index (expected 53.2) will both be reported at 10:00 ET.
  • Nasdaq Composite +5.3% YTD 
  • Russell 2000 +4.0% YTD 
  • S&P 500 +0.2% YTD 
  • Dow Jones Industrial Average -1.1% YTD

4:07 pm Anworth Mortgage increases the conversion rate on its Series B preferred stock (ANH) : The co announced that in accordance with the terms of Anworth's 6.25% Series B Cumulative Convertible Preferred Stock, or Series B Preferred Stock, the conversion rate of the Series B Preferred Stock will increase from 4.2640 shares of Anworth's common stock to 4.3274 shares of its common stock effective July 1, 2015.

4:07 pm CalAmp reports EPS in-line, revs in-line; guides Q2 and FY16 in-line (CAMP) :

  • Reports Q1 (May) earnings of $0.26 per share, excluding non-recurring items, in-line with the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.26; revenues rose 10.8% year/year to $65.4 mln vs the $65.59 mln consensus. 
  • Co issues in-line guidance for Q2, sees EPS of $0.24-0.28, excluding non-recurring items, vs. $0.26 Capital IQ Consensus; sees Q2 revs of $66-70 mln vs. $68.36 mln Capital IQ Consensus. 
    • "We anticipate Wireless Datacom revenue in the second quarter will be up on a sequential quarter basis, due to broad-based demand in core markets and increased shipments to our OEM customer in the heavy equipment industry. Second quarter Satellite segment revenue is expected to be relatively flat on a sequential quarter basis."
  • Co issues in-line guidance for FY16, sees FY16 revs of $280-290 mln vs. $282.73 mln Capital IQ Consensus -- driven by continued growth in Wireless Datacom segment and a much stronger second half for Satellite segment. 

4:06 pm ICF International awarded continuations and expansions of two current contracts with Pepco Holdings worth $14 mln (ICFI) : Co announces it was recently awarded continuations and expansions of two current contracts with Pepco Holdings (POM). The contracts have a combined value of more than $14 million; each has a term of 32 months. Co will continue to administer the residential energy efficiency portfolios for two of Pepco's Maryland utilities. 

4:06 pm Leidos is awarded a prime task order by the U.S. Army Communications Electronic Command, with a potential total contract value of ~$10 mln (LDOS) : Co was awarded a prime task order by the U.S. Army Communications Electronic Command to provide operation and maintenance support to the Software Engineering Center for the Property Book Unit Supply Enhanced system.

  • The single-award, cost-plus, fixed-fee task order has a one year base period of performance, two one year options and a total contract value of ~ $10 million if all options are exercised. 

4:06 pm Nortek acquires mobile personal emergency response system (mPERS) and telehealth business assets from Numera; financial terms not disclosed (NTK) :  

4:05 pm Donaldson acquires IFIL USA dust collection business; expected to contribute approximately $6-8 mln of revenue to FY16 results (DCI) : Co announces that it has acquired a majority stake in IFIL.USA, LLC, a manufacturer of pleated bag filters for industrial dust collection. The agreement with IFIL USA is expected to contribute approximately $6 million to $8 million of revenue to Donaldson's fiscal 2016 results.

4:03 pm IntraLinks Holdings expects to exceed its revenue guidance for Q2 of $66.5-68.0 mln vs $67.2 mln Capital IQ Conensus Est and is reaffirming its full year 2015 revenue and profitability guidance (IL) :

  • Co reaffirms 2015 EPS of $0.03-0.06 vs. $0.05 consensus, reaffirms revenue of $269-273 mln vs. $272.2 mln consensus.

4:03 pm BGC Partners expects Q2 distributable earnings revenues and pre-tax distributable earnings to be around the mid-point prior range (BGCP) : Co updated Q2 outlook - results will include the consolidation of those for BGC's majority-owned division, GFI Group (GFIG). BGC expects both its quarterly distributable earnings revenues and its pre-tax distributable earnings to be around the mid-point of the range of its previously stated guidance.

  • Co expected distributable earnings revenues of ~$650-680 mln (vs $665.7 mln est). BGC Partners had anticipated pre-tax distributable earnings to increase by between ~32-51% to  $70 -80 mln.  
  • The Company's original outlook for second quarter of 2015 revenues would have been at least $18 million higher but for the strengthening of the U.S. dollar compared with the year earlier period. With respect to BGC's consolidated results, ~33 percent of GFI's post-tax distributable earnings are expected to be attributable to noncontrolling interest in subsidiaries, while the remaining ~67 percent are expected to be attributable to the Company's fully diluted shareholders.

4:02 pm TetraLogic Pharmaceuticals announces update on MDS Clinical Program (TLOG) : Co announced preliminary data from the ongoing Phase 2A study of birinapant in combination with azacitidine in first line higher risk myelodysplastic syndromes (:MDS). The study is being conducted as a precursor to the ongoing randomized Phase 2B study.

  • The primary assessment of efficacy was the response rate using the modified International Working Group criteria (Cheson 2006) at the end of cycle four. Of the nine patients:
    • six completed four cycles of therapy and underwent a repeat bone marrow assessment. 
    • Three patients experienced a complete response, 
    • one patient experienced a bone marrow complete response, 
    • one patient experienced a partial response and underwent a stem cell transplant and one patient had stable disease. 
    • Three patients discontinued the study prior to receiving four cycles of treatment. 
  • The regimen was generally well tolerated, the most common side effects being fatigue, neutropenia and thrombocytopenia.

4:02 pm Montpelier Re and Endurance Specialty (ENH) shareholders vote in favor of the proposed merger (MRH) : The Merger remains subject to other customary closing conditions, including receipt of regulatory approvals. Endurance and Montpelier expect to complete the Merger early in the third quarter of 2015.

4:01 pm IntraLinks Holdings appoints Chris Lafond as its new EVP and CFO; succeeding Derek Irwin who has left the company to pursue other opportunities (IL) : Lafond most recently, was EVP and CFO at Gartner, Inc (IT

  • In addition, Rainer Gawlick, EVP of global sales, will be leaving Intralinks to pursue another opportunity. Intralinks president and CEO Ron Hovsepian will serve as interim head of global sales while the company completes a replacement search

4:01 pm El Pollo Loco appoints Mark Buller to its Board of Directors, effective June 30, 2015 (LOCO) : Buller, who most recently served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Norcraft Companies, will replace Wesley Barton, who resigned effective June 30, 2015. 

3:33 pm Currency Market Summary (BONDX) : Governments End Little Changed

  • U.S. Treasuries oscillated between positive and negative territory today, responding halfheartedly to economic data releases which were neutral on balance, although the fourth sub-50 reading of the Chicago PMI this year gives some cause for concern about the recovery. So far, the weakness has been isolated to the Midwest
  • Yield Check:
    • 2-yr: unch at 0.64%
    • 5-yr: +1 bp to 1.63%
    • 10-yr: +1 bps to 2.34%
    • 30-yr: unch at 3.10%
  • News:
    • The Case-Shiller 20-City Index rose 4.9% in April versus the Briefing.com consensus of +5.6%. The index climbed 5.0% in March
      • All 20 cities showed a year-over-year gain
    • The Chicago PMI came out at 49.4 in June, worse than the Briefing.com consensus of 50.0 but better than the 46.2 from May
      • According to the report, manufacturing activity in the Chicago region has contracted in 4 out of the last 5 months
      • Unfortunately, the contraction may not end next month. While new orders managed to break free of their contraction cycle, evidenced by the index rising to 51.7 from 47.5, the pullback in backlogs got much worse
        • The Order Backlogs Index fell to 41.0 in June from 47.3 in May. That was the lowest reading since September 2009
    • Consumer Confidence soared past estimates to 101.4 for June versus the Briefing.com consensus of 97.5. Confidence was at a downwardly-revised 94.6 in May
    • The Greek government sent a proposal for a 2-year bailout extension to its official creditors but they have declined to negotiate before the July 5th referendum on Greece's membership in the single currency bloc
    • Vice Fed Chair Stanley Fischer spoke at Oxford University and noted that the FOMC would have to begin hiking rates before it has reached its objectives because monetary policy operates with a time lag
  • Commodities:
    • WTI crude: +1.75% to $59.35/bbl
    • Gold: -0.65% to $1,171.30/troy oz.
    • Copper: -0.57% to $2.6185/lb.
  • Currencies:
    • EUR/USD: -0.59% to $1.1149
    • USD/JPY: -0.23% to 122.34
  • Data out Wednesday:
    • MBA Mortgage Index for the week ending 6/27 (07:00 ET)
    • June Challenger Job Cuts (07:30 ET)
    • June ADP Employment Change (08:15 ET)
    • June ISM Index (10:00 ET)
    • May Construction Spending (10:00 ET)
    • Crude Inventories for the week ending 6/27 (10:30 ET)
    • June Auto and Truck Sales (17:00 ET)

3:30 pm Earnings Calendar (:SUMRX) : Today after the close look for the following companies to report:

  • AVAV, CAMP
Tomorrow before the open look for the following companies to report:
  • GIS, STZ, MKC, GBX, PAYX, AYI, UNF, AZZ

3:26 pm Slow slide off afternoon highs extended -- Dow +15, S&P +4.5, Nasdaq Comp +26 (:TECHX) :  

3:13 pm Summary of upcoming spin offs as 2H15 begins (DD) : The following companies will spin off a business after the bell, in the form of a stock distribution.

  • DuPont (DD) will spin off Chemours (CC), which specializes in titanium technologies, fluoroproducts and chemical solutions, including Teflon. DD shareholders will receive one share of CC for every 5 shares of DuPont held. 
  • Baxter (BAX) will spin off Baxalta (BXLT), its biopharmaceuticals business. BAX shareholders will receive one share of BXLT common stock for each share of BAX held. 
  • Energizer (ENR) will change its name to Edgewell Personal Care (EPC) after spinning off its household products business, mostly batteries, which will retain the Energizer (ENR) name and ticker. ENR shareholders will receive one share of ENR and once share of EPC. 
  • Masco (MAS) will spin off TopBuild (BLD), a distributor and servicer of insulation and other building products nationwide. MAS stockholders will receive one share of BLD common stock for every nine shares of MAS held. 
  • TriMas (TRS) will spin off its Cequent business, Horizon Global (HZN), a designer, manufacturer and marketer of a broad range of accessories for light trucks. TRS shareholders will receive two HZN shares for every five shares of TRS held. 
  • Integra LifeSciences (IART) will spin off SeaSpine (SPNE), a med-tech co focused on surgical solutions for the treatment of spinal disorders, which has a comprehensive portfolio of orthobiologics and spinal fusion hardware. IART stockholders will receive one share of SPNE for every three shares of IART held. 
  • Graham (GHC) is spinning off its Cable ONE (CABO) business, a cable TV and internet service provider. GHC shareholders will receive one share of CABO for each share of GHC held. 
  • Babcock & Wilcox (BWC) will change its name to BWX Technologies (BWXT) and spin-off its Power Generation business, Babcock & Wilcox Enterprises (BW). BWC will receive one share of BW for every two shares held. 
  • NiSource (NI) will spin off Columbia Pipeline Group (CPGX), which owns and operated midstream natural gas pipeline assets. NI shareholders will receive one share of CPGX for each NI share held.

3:02 pm Acacia Research subsidiary LifePort Sciences announces the resolution of litigation with W.L. Gore & Associates; details not disclosed (ACTG) :  

2:46 pm Currency Market Summary (:FOREX) : Dollar Gains Broadly

  • The greenback made significant gains again the euro, the loonie, the swissy, and the kiwi today
    • The Chicago Purchasing Manager Index rose to 49.4 in June, but remained below 50, which indicates contraction. The Briefing.com consensus was for 50.0 and May's reading was 46.2
    • Consumer Confidence jumped to 101.4 in June from 95.4 in May. The Briefing.com consensus called for 97.5
    • U.S. Dollar Index: +0.74% to 95.49
  • EUR/USD: -0.66% to $1.1141
    • Greece is all but guaranteed to miss its 1.55 bln euro payment to the IMF due by the end of business today
    • The country is still on track to vote on a referendum on continued membership in the eurozone this Sunday, July 5th
  • GBP/USD: +0.03% to $1.5735
    • GDP growth in the U.K. was 0.4% according to the final revision released earlier today
  • USD/JPY: -0.25% to 122.31
    • Average Cash Earnings grew 0.6% y/y in May, less than expected and less than the 0.7% growth in April
    • Housing Starts grew 5.8% y/y in May, in line with estimates and better than the 0.4% growth in April 
  • USD/CHF: +1.05% to 0.9354
    • KOF Leading Indicators fell to a worse-than-expected 89.7 in June from 92.7 in May
  • USD/CAD: +0.67% to 1.2490
    • Canadian GDP fell 0.1% m/m in April after a 0.2% decline in March. Market expectations were for a rise in output
  • AUD/USD: +0.38% to $0.7710
  • NZD/USD: -0.94% to $0.6778
    • Kiwi touched a 3-year low as Deutsche Bank forecast a fourth cut to the RBNZ's policy rate for this year

2:39 pm Kroger announces the retirement of President and COO Mike Ellis; successor to be named at a later date (KR) :  

2:32 pm RCS Capital shares halted briefly for volatility, upon spiking +22% on release of news that it has closed an agreement with lenders related to leverage ratio amendments (shares now resumed) (RCAP) :  

2:30 pm Index Changes Reminder: TopBuild (BLD.TO) will replace Aropostale (ARO) in the S&P SmallCap 600 after the close of trading (:INDXCH) :

  • Skechers USA (SKX) will replace Rock-Tenn (RKT) in the S&P MidCap 400, and MiMedx Group (MDXG) will replace SKX in the S&P SmallCap 600 after the close of trading
  • Chemours (CC) will replace Semtech (SMTC) in the S&P MidCap 400, and SMTC will replace Paragon Offshore (PGN) in the S&P SmallCap 600 after the close of trading
  • "New" Energizer (ENR) will replace Harsco (HSC) in the S&P MidCap 400, and HSC will replace FXCM (FXCM) in the SmallCap 600 after the close of trading
  • S&P 500 constituent Priceline (PCLN) will replace Baxter (BAX) in the S&P 100, BAX will replace QEP Resources (QEP) in the S&P 500, QEP will replace Itron (ITRI) in the S&P MidCap 400, and ITRI will replace Arch Coal (ACI) in the S&P SmallCap 600 after the close of trading
  • S&P MidCap 400 constituent J.B. Hunt Trans (JBHT) will replace Integrys (TEG) in the S&P 500, S&P SmallCap 600 constituent Molina Healthcare (MOH) will replace JBHT in the S&P MidCap 400, and MYR Group (MYRG) will replace MOH in the S&P SmallCap 600 after the close of trading
  • Cable ONE (CABO) will replace Peabody Energy (BTU) in the S&P MidCap 400 after the close of trading

2:22 pm RCS Capital announces that it has agreed with its first and second lien lenders, to certain leverage ratio covenant amendments for its existing credit facilities (RCAP) : Co stated that additional details relating to the agreement will be outlined in an 8-K, filed later today

2:01 pm Walt Disney appoints Christine McCarthy as CFO, and Kevin May as Chief Strategy Officer, effective immediately (DIS) : Mccarthy was most recently the co's Executive Vice President, Corporate Real Estate, Alliances and Treasurer while Mayer has served since 2005 as Executive Vice President, Corporate Strategy and Business Development

1:49 pm Stock indices extend push off midday lows -- Dow +63, S&P +9.5, Nasdaq Comp +35 (:TECHX) :  

1:47 pm Twitter edges to new session high (TWTR) : The stock established a new 52-wk low during Mid-June and rebounded as high at 36.28.  It has displayed relative strength today with it recently establishing a new session high of 36.18 leaving it modestly below the recovery high. 

1:14 pm Notable movers of interest (:SCANX) : The following are some of today's most notable movers of interest, categorized by market capitalization (large cap over $10 billion and mid cap between $2-10 billion) and ranked by % change (all stocks over 100K average daily volume). 

Large Cap Gainers

  • MPEL (18.99 +6.09%): Casino names outperforming on reports that China will re-extend transit visas to encourage more visitors to Macau; also helping was MGM Resorts (MGM) activist shareholder Land & Buildings issuing additional letter to shareholders reiterating their bullish stance on the name citing undervaluation and rumors of industry consolidation (LVS also higher).
  • PNR (68.08 +5.67%): Activist investor Trian Fund Management disclosed 7.24% stake, says has met and engaged in discussions with management about ways to create shareholder value through various methods including accretive M&A.
  • LFC (21.65 +3.79%): Chinese ADSs outperforming after the sell off in Shanghai loses momentum with the SSE Composite Index gaining 5.5%; Shanghai had fallen over 20% in just two weeks (JD, VIPS, NTES also higher).
Large Cap Losers
  • SNY (49.23 -1.23%): Announced it will issue new shares, commence a secondary offering and issue convertible bonds for expected net proceeds of ~321 bln yen (~$3.6 bln).
  • SYY (36.04 -3.22%): Downgraded to Hold from Buy at Deutsche Bank.
  • ERIC (10.36 -3%): Weakness in European names as markets there sell-off, extending yesterday's declines (BBL, MT, RIO, ABB, TOT, NOK also lower).
Mid Cap Gainers
  • JUNO (54.96 +18.7%): Entered into a ten-year collaboration with Celgene (CELG) for the development and commercialization of immunotherapies; Celgene to make initial payment of ~$1 bln, which includes the purchase of ~9.1 mln shares of Juno's stock at $93/share.
  • FIT (36.53 +9.76%): Initiated with a Outperform at RBC Capital Mkts; tgt $45.
  • JMEI (22.45 +6.9%): Upgraded to Buy from Hold at HSBC; also rebounding in conjunction with other Chinese names.
Mid Cap Losers
  • BPOP (28.48 -3.79%): Continued weakness as a result of Puerto Rico's intensifying debt concerns.
  • KORS (42.16 -2.79%): Specialty retailers underperforming following cautious analyst comments (KATE also lower).
  • BBRY (8.06 -2.77%): Price target lowered to $10 from $11 at Cowen.

12:54 pm Midday Market Summary: Struggling to Stay Positive (:WRAPX) : The major averages trade near their flat lines at midday after sliding from their opening highs. The S&P 500 was up near 0.8% at the start, but currently trades flat with five sectors in the red.

Equity indices began the day on an upbeat note, trying to rebound from yesterday's broad-based slide. However, the key indices hit their highs during the opening minutes of the day and have spent the entire first half in a slow retreat from those levels. As a result, the S&P 500 now sits roughly five points above its 200-day moving average (2,054).

Concerns surrounding Greece's future in the Eurozone remain at the forefront with the country missing today's EUR1.60 billion payment to the International Monetary Fund. Furthermore, all negotiations are now on hold, pending the outcome of Sunday's referendum in Greece. To that point, the euro slumped to lows after German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that Germany cannot consider new proposals until after Sunday's referendum. Currently, the single currency trades at 1.1140 against the dollar, down 0.6% for the day.

Five sectors continue holding midday gains with materials (+0.3%) and financials (+0.2%) trading ahead of other groups. However, like other sectors, the two leaders have backed away from their best levels of the day.

Elsewhere, the health care sector (+0.1%) remains just above its flat line thanks to strength in biotechnology. The iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF (IBB 366.14, +5.57) trades higher by 1.5%, which has helped the Nasdaq stay ahead of the broader market.

That being said, the tech-heavy Nasdaq has not gotten much help from large cap names as Apple (AAPL 125.25, +0.72), Google (GOOGL 540.51, -0.74), and Intel (INTC 30.21, -0.18) trade in mixed fashion while the broader tech sector (-0.1%) hovers just below its flat line.

Over on the fixed income side, Treasuries have recovered their overnight losses and they now trade modestly higher with the 10-yr yield down a basis point at 2.31%.

Economic data included Chicago PMI, Consumer Confidence, and Case-Shiller 20-city Index:

  • The Chicago PMI increased to 49.4 in June from 46.2 in May while the Briefing.com consensus expected an increase to 50.0 
    • According to the report, manufacturing activity in the Chicago region has contracted in 4 out of the last 5 months 
    • The contraction in production eased in June, as the related index increased to 49.8 from 45.8 in May 
    • Unfortunately, the contraction may not end next month as the Order Backlogs Index fell to 41.0 in June from 47.3 in May, which was the lowest reading since September 2009 
  • The Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index increased to 101.4 in June from a downwardly revised 94.6 (from 95.4) in May while the Briefing.com consensus expected an increase to 97.5 
    • The Expectations Index increased to 94.6 in June from 86.2 in May while the Present Situation Index rose to 111.6 from 109.5 
  • The Case-Shiller 20-city Home Price Index for April rose 4.9% against a 5.6% increase expected by the Briefing.com consensus 
    • This followed the previous month's increase of 5.0%

12:32 pm Madison Square Garden names David O'Connor President and CEO effective July 15 (MSG) : Before joining MSG, O'Connor spent more than 30 years at CAA, serving as managing partner of the world-wide entertainment and sports agency for the past 20 years.

12:32 pm S&P -1 joins Dow -17 in the red, Nasdaq Comp +10 sets a new session low (:TECHX) :  

12:27 pm Boeing slips back near Monday low/200 sma at 138.58/138.59 -- session low 138.63 (BA) :  

12:25 pm Limited bounce off mid-morning lows erased with Dow +5 probing flat line, S&P +2.2 set new session low, Nasdaq Comp +18 still range trading. (:TECHX) :  

12:23 pm Del Taco (Levy Acquisition) shareholders approve merger, deal expected to close today (TACO) : With the nominal redemptions by LAC shareholders as part of the Merger, LAC will be able to achieve its goal of acquiring $60 million of Del Taco shares from legacy Del Taco shareholders for cash, instead of LAC shares. This limits the dilution of LAC shareholders to the maximum extent possible under the terms of the Merger Agreement.

12:06 pm Transalta awarded $250k from Alberta Innovates - Energy & Environment Solutions to help launch Alberta's first large-scale commercial energy storage project. (TAC) : TransAlta will use commercial-scale lithium-ion batteries to reduce energy costs for the customer. Five commercial-scale Tesla (TSLA) Powerpack batteries will be installed, each about the size of a household fridge, in a medium-sized building, such as a large grocery store, apartment block, post-secondary institution building or small office tower.

11:56 am European Markets Closing Prices (:SUMRX) : European markets are now closed; stock markets across Europe performed as follows:

  • UK's FTSE:-1.5%
  • Germany's DAX:-1.3%
  • France's CAC:-1.6%
  • Spain's IBEX:-0.8%
  • Portugal's PSI:+0.4%
  • Italy's MIB Index:-0.5%
  • Irish Ovrl Index:-0.4%
  • Greece ASE General Index: Closed

11:43 am Stocks/ETFs that traded to new 52 week highs/lows this session - New lows (280) outpacing new highs (41) (:SCANX) : Stocks that traded to 52 week highs: AHS, ALN, ASBB, BF.A, BNCN, BNK, BOOT, BOTJ, CACC, CAG, CFI, COTY, COWN, CPB, DMRC, DRC, EROS, ESXB, FNLC, FPT, GAIN, GIG, ITRN, JNP, JRVR, LION, LMAT, LPNT, MBVT, NGHC, ORIT, PBY, POST, ROL, SNPS, STRN, TFSL, UBCP, USNA, VAC, VRTU

Stocks that traded to 52 week lows: AA, ACST, ACTX, ACV, AIT, AMBC, AMH, AMRS, AMSC, APOL, ARO, ASM, AUY, AVP, AZN, BBF, BBK, BBRY, BCX, BDN, BDSI, BEN, BHK, BIE, BKH, BLT, BMR, BWP, CAPX, CAR, CBA, CBAY, CBL, CBT, CECO, CENX, CEQP, CETV, CHEK, CIDM, CIM, CMLP, CMU, CNAT, CNP, CNS, CNW, CNX, CPN, CPPL, CPST, CPTA, CSAL, CSI, CTCM, CTR, CUI, CVE, CXE, DDR, DNOW, DO, DRYS, DSCO, DTF, DV, ECT, EFC, EGF, EIA, EMO, ENLK, ENPH, EOX, ERIC, ESIO, ETRM, EVEP, EVM, FDML, FGB, FHCO, FMN, FMY, GEO, GG, GLRE, GMCR, GMZ, GRMN, GRPN, GTY, GWR, HH, HLX, HNW, HPQ, HSGX, HTCH, HTZ, HYI, I, ICAD, IF, INF, INTX, IO, IRC, IRR, IRT, JMF, JMM, JMT, JOY, JRS, KATE, KED, KEM, KLIC, KODK, KORS, KRO, KS, KTF, KYE, KYN, LMRK, LOR, LPT, LPTN, LXP, MAV, MBI, MCA, MDIV, MDU, MEI, MEP, MFV, MHF, MIE, MITT, MNI, MNTX, MOBL, MOD, MTR, MU, MUC, MUJ, MUR, MVO, MYJ, MYM, NAD, NAV, NBW, NEA, NEV, NFJ, NGD, NIQ, NJV, NMY, NOR, NPP, NRP, NRT, NSA, NSC, NSPH, NTG, NTN, NVG, NVX, NXC, NXQ, NYLD, OAKS, OFC, OFG, OGE, OIS, OKS, ORIG, OTEX, OUT, PAA, PBI, PCF, PGRE, PHG, PICO, PLG, PML, PSUN, PTIE, PYN, RAS, RBCN, RCAP, RCPI, RDS.A, RDS.B, RGSE, RIF, RJET, RNWK, ROYL, RWT, SD, SDPI, SGL, SIR, SKT, SLH, SMM, SMRT, SMTC, SNDK, SNI, SNR, SONS, SRC, SRET, SRF, SRSC, SRT, SRV, SSH, STAG, STB, STRA, STX, SWAY, SXC, SZC, TAC, TAXI, TC, TCK, TCO, TGB, TGD, TGH, TGP, TIVO, TLN, TPZ, TRCO, TROX, TTHI, TTP, TUES, TYG, UBA, UE, UNP, USDP, USEG, VICL, VII, VJET, VMEM, VMM, VNCE, VSH, WDC, WG, WIN, WMT, WPCS, WRLD, WTS, XCO, XONE, XRX, YLCO, YRCW, ZINC

ETFs that traded to 52 week highs: none

ETFs that traded to 52 week lows: AMJ, DBB, EGPT, ENZL, SLX, URA, XME

11:38 am Amyris (halted) announces Total's (TOT) decision to proceed With Jet Fuel JV and plans to restructure and convert $175 mln of outstanding convertible debt for common stock (AMRS) : Co has agreed on key business terms with Total Energies Nouvelles Activits USA (TOT) for restructuring its fuels joint venture to open the way for proceeding with commercialization of its jet fuel technology over the coming years.

  • Following the restructuring, Total would own 75% of the joint venture with Amyris. 
  • In conjunction with this transaction, Amyris has also agreed on key business terms with Total and Temasek, another major stockholder of Amyris, under which, and as part of a plan to strengthen the balance sheet, these stockholders would exchange an aggregate of $138 million of convertible debt for Amyris common stock at a price of $2.30 per share, with an additional $37 million of outstanding convertible debt being restructured to eliminate Amyris's repayment obligation at maturity and provide for mandatory conversion to Amyris common stock.

11:33 am Currency Commentary: Headline Minefield (:SUMRX) :

  • The Dollar Index is seeing a spike as it rallies back into the middle of the 95 area. There has not been any headlines or rumors attributed to the move but it certainly bears watching. The move comes in the midst of Greece's high stakes gamble with creditors. It also comes ahead of a slew of economic data that includes the ISM Index, Construction Spending, and Vehicle Sales (Wed) and Jobs (Thu). Today we saw Case Shiller and Chicago PMI miss expectations but for Consumer Confidence to outpace estimates.
  • The euro just fell a quick 50 pips. Presumably the move is coming in reaction to a comment from a German official that there will be no deal ahead of the referendum. The situation remains fluid and there and headlines will continue to impact trade. On the economic data front, we saw weak CPI and job numbers in the region which should help enforce continuation of the QE program put in place in March. The euro is now attempting to hold the 1.1140 area as we continue on with the Greek saga.
  • The pound continues to trade in the 1.57 level. Sterling has been unable to break above the 1.58 level but it has not seen aggressive selling as it consolidates just below multi-month highs. The country saw a slight upgrade to its Q1 GDP as it was revised to +0.4% q/q from +0.3%. 
  • The yen is testing 122 for resistance. FOr years the yen has been used as a measuring tool for risk appetite in the markets. But it certainly appears that it has lost some of its ability as the carry trade has spread out given the globally low interest rates (FOREX, BONDX).

11:10 am Stock indices attempting to work off morning pullback levels -- Dow +65, S&P +8, Nasdaq Comp +26 (:TECHX) : Sectors displaying some relative strength in recent trade include: Internet FDN, Biotech IBB, REITs IYR, Rail, Transports IYT, Housing XHB.

10:50 am New session lows for small-/mid-caps and Nasdaq 100/Comp -- Dow +33 and S&P +3 extend slip off opening highs (:TECHX) :  

10:40 am Caterpillar slide to new session low of 85.16 (CAT) : Monday's three week low is at 85.10 with the two month lows from early June at 84.91 and 84.70.

10:34 am Acorn Intl regains compliance with NYSE continued listing standards (ATV) :  

10:26 am Relative sector strength in recent trade (:TECHX) : Sectors that are displaying some intraday relative strength vs. the S&P in recent trade include: Ag/Chem MOO, Casino, Internet FDN, Energy XLE, Crude Oil USO

10:23 am Diversified Restaurant Holdings refinances its debt and funds the acquisition of 18 Buffalo Wild Wings restaurants via $155 mln in financing from Citizens Bank (BAGR) : Co underwent $155 mln in new financing, to refinance existing debt and to fund the acquisition of 18 Buffalo Wild Wings restaurants in the St. Louis area for $54 million. The financing includes a $120 million Term Loan, an unfunded $30 million Development Line of Credit to support continued store growth and an unfunded $5 million Revolver to support working capital needs.

10:18 am AstraZeneca and Eolas Therapeutics enter into a worldwide license and partnership agreement on the Eolas Orexin-1 Receptor Antagonist program for smoking cessation and other indications (AZN) : The EORA program was awarded a Blueprint Neurotherapeutics grant from the National Institutes of Health (:NIH) for the development of the program from the preclinical stage through phase I clinical trials. The total deal potential is in excess of $145M. This includes upfront, clinical and regulatory milestone payments. Additionally, Eolas is eligible to receive royalties on commercial sales.

10:08 am Major averages slipping back off opening highs -- S&P +8.4, Dow +60, Nasdaq Comp +27 (:TECHX) : Noted earlier (09:44) that the S&P had paused at resistance from The Technical Take at 2072/2074 (session high 2073.62) in opening trade. The slip was slightly extended in recent trade leaving the index just above intraday support mentioned earlier at 2063 (hit 2064.40). A sustained push back above 2070/2071 is needed to improve the price pattern off the early high.

10:03 am iHeartMedia to offer music by iHeartRadio and Virgin Produced for Virgin America flights (IHRT) :  

9:50 am Technology Select Sector SPDR flirting with 200 sma/ema again (XLK) : Monday's breakdown brought it 200 sma/ema (41.52/41.41) into play with it closing slightly below (41.36). The firmer start this morning has faltered with the XLK back vacillating between the averages (session low 41.45).

9:46 am Opening Market Summary: Influential Sectors Pace Opening Advance (:WRAPX) : The major averages began the day on an upbeat note with the S&P 500 up 0.6%. The early advance has helped the benchmark index narrow its June decline to 1.8%.

Nine of ten sectors display early gains with health care (+0.9%), industrials (+0.9%), and financials (+0.9%) in the lead. Meanwhile, the top-weighted technology sector (+0.5%) trades a bit behind the broader market. On the flip side, the utilities sector (-0.1%) is the lone decliner in the early going.

Elsewhere, Treasuries have marked fresh session lows not long ago with the 10-yr yield now up three basis points at 2.36%.  

Just released, the Chicago PMI for June rose to 49.4 from 46.2 while the Briefing.com consensus expected an increase to 50.0.

The Consumer Confidence report for June will cross the wires at 10:00 ET (expected 97.5).

9:44 am S&P +11 pauses at resistance zone (:TECHX) : Solid, broad based push higher off the open with the S&P testing and pausing at resistance noted in The Technical Take at 2072/2074 which marks the Mid-June low and the 38% retracement of Monday's breakdown. Initial intraday supports to monitor are 2067 and 2063 (recently dipped to 2068). 

9:43 am TreeHouse Foods 8% higher after ConAgra (CAG) announced it plans to exit (THS's rival) private label business (THS) :  

9:42 am Diageo plc announces changes to its North America leadership; Deirdre Mahlan to be appointed President, Diageo North America (DEO) : The co announced that Deirdre Mahlan, currently Chief Financial Officer, is to be appointed President Diageo North America. Deirdre's replacement will be announced in due course and until that time she will continue in her current role as CFO of Diageo. Tom Looney, currently president Diageo-Guinness USA has been appointed to the role of President, US Open and Control States. Jeff Ivey, Chief Commercial Officer will expand his role to include leadership of National Accounts business as well as Commercial Capabilities Separately, Diageo announced that Claudia Schubert, President Control States is appointed to the role of General Manager, Continental Europe effective September 1 based in Amsterdam reporting to the President of Diageo Europe.

9:39 am Early relative strength (:TECHX) : Sectors pacing the way higher in early trade include: Casino (MPEL, WYNN, LVS, MGM), Cyber Security HACK, biotech IBB (JUNO, NBIX, BLUE, CLVS, ICPT, MDVN, OTIC, GILD, BMRN, VRTX), Solar TAN, Social Medial SOCL, Airline JETS, Crude Oil USO, Broker IAI, Home Const ITB.

9:38 am Alliance Data's Epsilon unit signs a new multiyear agreement with Turner Broadcasting System to support the Turner Data Cloud (ADS) :  

9:36 am Solid push higher off the open for market averages -- Dow +98, S&P +14, Nasdaq Comp +35 (:TECHX) : The Greek ETF has posted strong gains (GREK +4.8%).

9:34 am AAR Corp to close its MRO facility in Hot Springs, Ark., and transfer operations to its Oklahoma City, Okla., facility (AIR) : In response to overcapacity in North America, AAR will locate maintenance for regional aircraft in Oklahoma City by August to better align the capacity of AAR's 1MRO Network with current market demand.

9:29 am On the Wires (:WIRES) :

  • Rayonier (RYN) announced it has acquired ~18,000 acres of high-quality timberlands in southwest Louisiana and northwest Oregon in two separate transactions from BTG Pactual Timberland Investment Group. The company also acquired ~ 4,600 acres located in Florida and Georgia in the second quarter of 2015 through a series of small transactions with non-industrial private landowners. Year-to-date, Rayonier has acquired 35,000 acres of high quality timberland in the U.S. South and Pacific Northwest for a total of approximately $88 million.
  • Malibu Boats (MBUU) announced that it filed a lawsuit for patent infringement against MasterCraft Boat Company. The complaint, filed in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee, alleges infringement of U.S. Patent No. 8,578,873 based on MasterCraft's "Gen 2 Surf System and the NXT Surf System."

9:29 am On the Wires (:WIRES) :

  • One Horizon Group (OHGI) announced that its technology has been further optimized for the Xiaomi smartphone model range. 
  • SGI Japan, Ltd. part of SGI (SGI) announced the acceptance of an order from Japan Atomic Energy Agency for the Agency's next supercomputer system. 
  • TSYS (TSS) announced that it has extended its payments agreement with Mexico's Banco INVEX S.A. The multi-year agreement includes processing services for INVEX's consumer and commercial credit card portfolios. 
  • Solazyme Bunge Renewable Oils, a joint venture between Solazyme, Inc. (SZYM) and Bunge Global Innovation LLC, a division of Bunge (BG), provided an update on engineering activities at the production facility in Orindiuva, Brazil. Bunge and Solazyme Bunge Renewable Oils have successfully completed two key power and steam redundancy improvement projects including the construction and activation of an electrical grid tie-in, and the tie-in and activation of a second steam boiler. 
  • HP (HPQ) announced that Bill Veghte, Executive Vice President of HP's Enterprise Group, will be departing the company later this summer to pursue a new opportunity. Since October, Bill has been leading the separation efforts for Hewlett Packard Enterprise. Chris Hsu, who will assume the role of COO for Hewlett Packard Enterprise upon separation, will continue to lead Hewlett Packard Enterprise's separation efforts. 
  • CytRx (CYTR) unveiled its proprietary LADR (Linker Activated Drug Release) technology platform. CytRx expects the LADR platform to rapidly expand its pipeline of oncology drug candidates, providing an avenue for the development of propriety drug candidates that complement its global Phase 3 aldoxorubicin program. 
  • MoneyGram (MGI) announced it is expanding its official check network through a new agreement with Founders Federal Credit Union to provide official check services
  • LeMaitre Vascular (LMAT) announced that it has begun selling Direct-to-Hospital in New Zealand and will be converting Finland as of January 2016.

9:29 am On the Wires (:WIRES) :

  • Amazon.com (AMZN) announced the launch of its physical goods store on Amazon.com.mx, a Spanish-language website with items available for customers in Mexico
  • MetaBank, a unit of Meta Financial Group (CASH) announced that it recently signed a five-year agreement to extend its relationship with NetSpend, a TSYS company (TSS) as a prepaid provider of choice to self-banked consumers
  • Oramed Pharmaceuticals Inc. (ORMP) announced today that the first patient has been screened in the Company's Phase IIb trial of its oral insulin capsule, ORMD-080
  • Tyler Technologies (TYL) has signed a contract with Kern County, California, for Tyler's Odyssey integrated criminal justice (:ICJ) solution. The agreement, valued at approximately $5 million, includes software licenses, related professional services, maintenance and support.
  • Fluor Corporation (FLR) announced that the Government of Canada has selected it as the preferred bidder to manage and operate Canadian Nuclear Laboratories, currently a subsidiary of Atomic Energy of Canada Limited
  • Celestial Seasonings, a brand of The Hain Celestial Group, (HAIN) announced that nine of its teas-including Sleepytime Herbal Tea- have received Non-GMO Project Verification
  • Duke Energy (DUK), Samsung (SSNLF) SDI and Younicos announced they will team up to update Duke Energy's 36-megawatt (MW) energy storage and power management system at the company's Notrees Windpower Project in west Texas. The system has been operating since 2012 with lead acid batteries, over the course of 2016, these batteries will be gradually replaced with lithium-ion technology
  • Boyd Gaming Corporation (BYD) announced a $45 million expansion of Delta Downs Racetrack Casino Hotel in Vinton, Louisiana

9:26 am Arthur J. Gallagher provides update on at the market equity program, says during Q2 it sold ~3.1 mln shares of its common stock (AJG) : These shares were issued primarily to have funds available to close early third quarter 2015 acquisitions, including the recently announced acquisition of William Gallagher Associates. In addition, during the second quarter 2015, Gallagher issued approximately 4.0 million shares, in connection with acquisitions and earnouts, at a weighted average price of approximately $48.25 per share.

9:21 am Glori Energy announces the election of Director Mark Puckett as new Chairman of the Board (GLRI) : Puckett succeeds John U. Clarke, who is resigning effective June 29 from Glori's Board after four years of service to focus on other business commitments

9:20 am St. Joe Company will discuss Bay-Walton entitlements, no in effect, at today's Shareholder's meeting; co preannounces Q2 results (JOE) : The Bay-Walton County Sector Plan has been officially adopted by Bay County and Walton County. In addition, the Sector Plan has been found in compliance with state law and is therefore in effect. The Sector Plan is a master plan that includes entitlements, or legal rights, to develop over 170,000 residential units and over 22 million square feet of retail, commercial, and industrial uses on 110,500 acres of the Company's land holdings. A significant amount of these entitlements are planned to service the active adult retirement market and additionally, the Company anticipates a wide range of other residential and commercial uses.

Company expects revenue for the second quarter of 2015 to be ~ $36 million to $38 million as compared to $68.2 mln in 2Q14 (no estimates). The RiverTown sale accounted for $43.6 million of revenue in the second quarter of 2014. The Company anticipates pre-tax income to be in the range of $2 million to $3 million for the second quarter of 2015 as compared to pre-tax income of $23.3 million for the second quarter of 2014, which included $26 million pre-tax income from the RiverTown sale.

9:19 am Navios Maritime Partners announces charter of 16-20 months at a rate of $12,825 net per day for its Navios Fantastiks (NMM) : Effective June 3, 2015, the Navios Fantastiks was chartered out to Navios Holdings for a ten-month period at a rate of $12,500 net per day with a 50% profit sharing based on actual results. At the termination of the initial charter to Navios Holdings (April 2016), the Navios Fantastiks will be redelivered to Navios Partners subject to this new charter to a third party at the rate of $12,825 net per day. The remaining period of the charter will then be 6-10 months, terminating no earlier than October 2016.

9:17 am Cabot comments on yesterday's Supreme Court ruling on mercury and air toxics standards regulation for coal-fired utility plants (CBT) : "We are, of course, disappointed with the result of this ruling which will cause a delay in the control of mercury and other hazardous air pollutants which is critical to public health and the environment. Furthermore, most of the coal-fired utilities have already invested in the control of mercury, and activated carbon has proven to be a cost-effective solution." 

  • The co noted the future of the MATS regulation, and the effect this ruling will have on our Purification Solutions segment, will depend on a variety of factors, including the future rulings of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals and the actions of the EPA. The timing of these actions is difficult to predict; however, these developments will likely cause a delay in the achievement of the Purification Solutions segment's EBITDA expectations for 2017.

9:16 am Teekay Offshore confirms completion of acquisition of Knarr FPSO from Teekay (TK); will issue $250 mln in convertible preferred units; confirms $300 mln investment from TK (TOO) : The co confirmed it complete the acquisition of the Petrojarl Knarr floating production, storage and offloading unit from Teekay Corporation (TK) for its fully built-up cost of approximately $1.26 billion on July 1, 2015. The FPSO has now completed all the required operational testing and has commenced its full charter rate under the long-term contract on the Knarr oil and gas field in the North Sea where BG Norge Limited is the operator. 

  • The co also announced it has agreed to issue $250 million of Series C Convertible Preferred units (Preferred Units) in a private placement to two strategic investors, Magnetar Capital and Triangle Peak Partners (collectively the Strategic Partners). The distribution rate for the Preferred Units is 8.6 percent per annum and the Preferred Units are convertible on a one-for-one basis at any time after 18 months into Teekay Offshore common units at a price of $23.95 per unit, which represents a premium of 15 percent above a unit price based on a volume-weighted average price mechanism.
  • The co also confirmed it will issue $300 million of common units (and associated general partner interest) to Teekay at a price of $20.83 per unit.

9:12 am S&P futures vs fair value: +14.20. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: +28.20. (:WRAPX) : The stock market is on track to reclaim a portion of yesterday's decline at the open as futures on the S&P 500 trade 14 points above fair value.

Index futures climbed throughout the night with the move accelerating after markets in Europe opened for action. Currently, the key indices there trade in mixed fashion with Italy's MIB (+0.7%) showing relative strength while UK's FTSE (-0.6%) lags. As expected, Greece did not make its EUR1.60 billion debt payment to the International Monetary Fund with the focus now turning to the country's referendum on Sunday, July 5. That being said, German Chancellor Angela Merkel reminded recently that Greece's current bailout program expires at midnight. Meanwhile, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said Greece could stay in the Eurozone even if Sunday's referendum produces a 'no' vote.

Domestically, the market looks poised to rebound from yesterday's selling that pressured the S&P 500 into the neighborhood of its 200-day moving average (2,053.5). The benchmark index has not tested that level since late October, ending yesterday's session roughly four points above that mark.

Unlike equity futures, Treasuries have retreated with the 10-yr yield climbing two basis points to 2.35%.

The Chicago PMI report for June (consensus 50.0) will be released at 9:45 ET while June Consumer Confidence will cross at 10:00 ET (expected 97.5).

9:05 am Sprint confirms the launch of its 'all-in' pricing plan for $80 per month (available starting today) (S) : With All-In Wireless, consumers pay $80 per month for a wireless device and unlimited talk, text and high-speed data. Consumers pay $0 down and only a one-time, $36 activation fee.

9:04 am RADA Electronic Industries reports an order to produce and supply a tactical air surveillance radar to a leading European defense contractor; slated for delivery later this year (RADA) :  

9:03 am Avanir Pharmaceuticals reports top-line data from the PRISM II study of NUEDEXTA, showing statistically significant reduction in symptoms of pseudobulbar affect in TBI patients (AVNR) : Co announced top-line data from the PRISM II study showing that treatment with NUEDEXTA was associated with a statistically significant reduction in symptoms of pseudobulbar affect (PBA) in patients with traumatic brain injury (TBI) or stroke.

  • TBI Data Highlights: At baseline, patients had a mean CNS-LS score of 20.5 and were suffering from a median of 10 PBA episodes per week. At the end of the study period, mean CNS-LS improved to 11.9 (P
    • Consistent improvement was observed in other effectiveness endpoints. Adverse events (AE) were reported by 43 patients (35.8%) with 23 (19.2%) having an AE deemed to be treatment-related. 
    • The most commonly reported AE was diarrhea (8.3%). A total of four patients had serious AEs (none of which were deemed to be treatment-related), and 14 patients discontinued the study due to AEs. 
  • Stroke Data Highlights: At baseline, patients had a mean CNS-LS score of 20.8 and were suffering from a median of 10 PBA episodes per week. At the end of the study period, mean CNS-LS improved to 13.1 (P
    • Consistent improvement was observed in other effectiveness endpoints. AEs were reported by 40 patients (35.4%) with 16 (14.2%) having an AE deemed to be treatment-related. 
    • The most commonly reported AEs were diarrhea (4.4%), headache (3.5%) and constipation (2.7%). A total of seven patients had serious AEs (none of which were deemed to be treatment-related), and six patients discontinued the study due to AEs

9:02 am DryShips announces agreements to sell its six aframax tankers (DRYS) :

  • Co announced that further to its previous press release dated March 31, 2015, entities controlled by the Company's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, George Economou, have exercised their unconditional acceptance to acquire the Company's six Aframax tankers, Belmar, Calida, Alicante, Mareta, Saga and Daytona.

9:02 am Black Box is one of 20 industry partners awarded prime contractor status involved in a $7.9 bln US Air Force contract (BBOX) : Co is one of 20 industry partners awarded prime contractor status to provide information technology products and solutions to the United States Air Force through its Network-Centric Solutions 2 (NETCENTS-2) NetOps and Infrastructure Solutions Full and Open, Indefinite Delivery, Indefinite Quantity contract.

  • The 10-year, $7.9 billion multiple-award contract includes product and services designed to improve global network operations, mission-critical applications, infrastructure support and upgrades, reconnaissance mission capabilities (C4ISR), system integration, security, research and development and other strategic IT communications initiatives. Under the contract's structure, Black Box could provide an indefinite quantity of supplies or services through 2025.

9:02 am AXT appoints Hong Hou as COO; effective June 29, 2015 (AXTI) :

  • Co announces that it has appointed Hong Hou as COO effective June 29, 2015. Hou will have responsibility for AXT's global operations and will report to chief executive officer, Morris Young. Hou served as director, president and CEO of EMCORE Corporation (EMKR) from March 2008 to January 2015.

9:02 am Meta Financial sells 535K shares of common stock to an institutional investor, for ~$23 million. (CASH) : Co intends to use the net proceeds from these proposed stock issuances to finance a future acquisition.

9:01 am MGM Resorts: Land and Buildings sees catalysts to unlock MGM Resorts substantial undervaluation; notes Tracinda's forced liquidation of its 16.2% stake likely to accelerate strategic initiatives, such as a REIT conversion or sale of the company (MGM) : Land and Buildings Investment Mgmt issued a statement today regarding MGM Resorts International (MGM), highlights include:

  • "We continue to believe MGM is severely undervalued, with a net asset value of at least $30 per share, and there are numerous viable paths for improving performance and creating sustainable shareholder value."
  • "The time line to unlock value at MGM has likely accelerated as Tracinda, MGM's largest shareholder at 16.2%, is mandated to sell its stake in the Co in an "orderly" manner following the passing of Tracinda's founder, Kirk Kerkorian. New opportunities to unlock value are likely on the table, including the sale of the entire Company. A REIT conversion is simpler once Tracinda's stake is liquidated as there will be no related party issues."
  • "Numerous media sources, including Jim Cramer of CNBC, have reported on a potential merger between Wynn Resorts (WYNN) and MGM. We expect such a merger of Wynn and MGM would have extraordinary synergies and we hope that should a merger be completed MGM would adopt Wynn's commitment to operational excellence and balance sheet discipline." 
  • "REITs are an excellent structure for maintaining luxury assets. MGM would likely garner a premium valuation for a REIT to Gaming and Leisure Properties, a regional gaming REIT that trades at 16x EBITDA, all else equal, given the inclusion of iconic assets such as the Bellagio."
  • "MGM's 50% stake in CityCenter could likely be sold for $2-$3 bln with minimal tax implications given MGM's high cost basis in the asset. This sale would help the Co to meaningfully reduce debt. CityCenter's EBITDA of $300 mln has been uninspiring when compared to Wynn's similar vintage and cheaper to construct Las Vegas assets with EBITDA of over $500 mln in 2014."

9:01 am Teekay Shipping increases its quarterly dividend to $0.55/share from $0.31625/share; completes the sale of the Knarr FPSO; Teekay to invest $300 million in TOO common units (TK) : Co raises common dividend to $0.55 per share for Q2, a 75% increase from the previous cash dividend of $0.31625 per share. Co also announces today that it will complete the sale of the Petrojarl Knarr floating production, storage and offloading (:FPSO) unit to Teekay Offshore Partners (TOO) for its fully built-up cost of approximately $1.26 billion on July 1, 2015. In connection with sale of the Knarr FPSO, Teekay has agreed to invest $300 million in Teekay Offshore common units at a price of $20.83 per unit. The common units will be received in mid-July 2015. "We are pleased to announce these important milestones as Teekay Parent transitions into a pure-play general partner, which is largely complete with the expected consummation of our largest dropdown sale to-date and the implementation of Teekay Parent's new dividend policy."

9:01 am Kilroy Realty agrees to sell ~3.773 mln shares of its common stock directly to an institutional investor at $66.19/share (KRC) :

  • Co announces that it has agreed to issue and sell ~3.773 mln shares of its common stock directly to an institutional investor at a price of $66.18971/share. The offering is expected to close on July 1, 2015. The Company estimates the offering will generate net proceeds of ~$249.6 million. 
  • The Company intends to use the net proceeds from the offering to repay borrowings outstanding under its operating partnership's revolving credit facility and for other general corporate purposes, which may include acquiring land and properties, funding development projects and repaying other outstanding indebtedness.

9:01 am S&P futures vs fair value: +16.00. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: +32.20. (:WRAPX) : The S&P 500 futures trade 16 points above fair value.

The Case-Shiller 20-city Home Price Index for April rose 4.9% against a 5.6% increase expected by the Briefing.com consensus. This followed the previous month's increase of 5.0%.

9:00 am Kandi Technologies announces JV's receipt of approx US$44.3 million subsidy from Chinese National Government (KNDI) : Co announced that Kandi Electric Vehicles Group Co., Ltd., the manufacturer of Kandi Brand electric vehicles, has received a payment of RMB 271.1 million (approximately US$44.3 million) representing a national subsidy for pure EV sales during the third and fourth quarter of 2014. The JV Company is a 50/50 joint venture between Kandi and Geely Automobile.

8:51 am On the Wires (:WIRES) :

  • The Western Union Company (WU) announced that it has signed an agreement to activate Western Union Money Transfer services within WHSmith high street stores via Western Union's self-service kiosks The new agreement will allow Western Union's digital self-service kiosks to be available at 300 WHSmith stores
  • Ardmore Shipping Corporation (ASC) announced that the Company took delivery of the newbuilding Ardmore Seafox on June 25, 2015. Following delivery, the Ardmore Seafox has commenced her initial employment in the Ardmore fleet, contributing to the Company's cashflow and earnings
  • St. Jude Medical (STJ) announced the launch of the ILUMIEN III clinical trial, a prospective, international, randomized trial evaluating the clinical benefits of the company's optical coherence tomography guidance during stent implantation. The ILUMIEN III study will compare OCT-guided stent implantation to implantation guided by intravascular ultrasound or angiography alone.
  • Energy Focus (EFOI) announced that it has shipped its first order for the Royal Australian Navy
  • Workday (WDAY) announced the launch of Workday Planning, a new planning, budgeting, and forecasting application.
  • Amarantus BioScience (AMBS, currently AMBSD) announced that the USPTO issued it the U.S. Patent No. 9,066,903 entitled, "Pharmacological Treatment of Parkinson's Disease." The patent covers methods for the administration of eltoprazine, in combination with the anti-Parkinson's drug, levodopa, for the treatment of Parkinson's disease.

8:38 am Gapping down (:SCANX) : Gapping down
In reaction to disappointing earnings/guidance
: APOL -12.2%, HELI -6.4%

M&A news: TW -1.3% (Willis Group and Towers Watson to combine in merger of equals)

Select metals/mining stocks trading lower: HMY -4.3%, AU -1.8%, GOLD -1.2%, BHP -0.9%, GG -0.6%


Other news: ETRM -9.3% ( prices its offering of ~40.23 mln units of common stock and warrants at $0.87/unit), SNE -6.1% (to issue new shares, commence secondary offering and issue convertible bonds), VGGL -3.8% (priced offering of ~2.05 mln shares of common stock at $2.05 per share), MGM -1% (still checking), ISSI -0.9% (stockholders approved acquisition by Uphill Investment for $23 per share in cash)

Analyst comments: MLHR -2.8% (downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Longbow), TCB -1.0% (downgraded to Hold at Sandler O'Neill)

8:36 am Schnitzer Steel beats by $0.08, misses on revs (SCHN) : Reports Q3 (May) net of breakeven from cont ops, excluding non-recurring items, $0.08 better than the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of ($0.08); revenues fell 26.5% year/year to $467.3 mln vs the $503.76 mln consensus. 

  • In Metals Recycling, ferrous volumes increased 29% and nonferrous sales volumes increased 21% versus the second quarter. 
  • Due to the rapid decline in ferrous selling prices in February, which impacted shipments in the third quarter, average inventory costs did not decline as quickly as selling prices, which led to an estimated $14 per ton, or $13 million, adverse impact of average inventory accounting which approximated the adverse impact in the second quarter.

8:35 am Hanger to solicit consent from holders of its 7% Senior Notes due 2018 to amend and waive certain provisions of the indenture (HGR) : The co announced that it is soliciting consents from holders of its $200,000,000 aggregate principal amount 7?% Senior Notes due 2018 to amend and waive certain provisions of the indenture pursuant to which the Notes were issued. The Proposed Amendment and Waiver will amend, effective as of September 29, 2014, the reporting covenant in the indenture to eliminate until November 16, 2015 any obligation for the Company to deliver to the trustee or the noteholders various reports required to be filed or furnished with the Securities and Exchange Commission

8:34 am Gapping up (:SCANX) : Gapping up
In reaction to strong earnings/guidance
: CAG +2.5%,

M&A news: WSH +7% (Willis Group and Towers Watson to combine in merger of equals),GLW +1.5% (acquires the pharmaceutical glass tubing business of Gerresheimer AG for EUR 196 mln),GE +0.8% (confirms Sumitomo Mitsui Banking (SMFG) has made an agreed offer to acquire GE's European Sponsor Finance business for ~$2.2 bln)

Select China related names showing strength; Shanghai +5.5% overnight: SFUN +4.6%, JMEI +4.3%, DANG +3.2%, QIHU +1.9%, BABA +1.5%

Other news: JUNO +33.3% (Juno Therapeutics and Celgene announce a collaboration on CAR-T and TCR cancer technologies; collaboration includes a $1 bln Celgene payment and acquisition of ~9.1 mln shares of Juno stock),CGIX +11.8% (awarded a multimillion dollar clinical trial in hematological cancers by a leading biotech company),NBG +11% (cont volatility in Greece),CLLS +9.7% (JUNO peer),PRAN +8.7% (announces the safety outcomes of the IMAGINE Extension study in patients with Alzheimer's disease),CYAD +7.5% (rebounding following yday decline),KITE +6.9% (following JUNO news),BLCM +6.2% (following JUNO news),ZIOP +5.7% (following JUNO news),PNR +4.9% (WSJ details news that Trian wants Pentair (PNR) to consider purchase of competitors in the space),AMCN +4.4% (Herman Man Guo (Chairman, CEO) discloses 17.16% active stake in 13D filing; as previously announced, Guo has made an offer to acquire all outstanding shares at $6 per ADS),MNGA +4.2% (reports the successful demonstration of its fuel to several utilities, and requests for additional follow-up demonstrations),AMD +3.8% (seeing reports that Microsoft (MSFT) approached the company regarding an acquisition several months ago),CMCM +3.8% (obtains increased annual fee caps from Tencent (TCEHY)),PTNR +3.7% (creates a new framework for relationship with Orange (ORAN)),SSYS +3.4% (cont volatility, large call option volume yday),FIT +3% (Blue Ridge Capital discloses 8.32% passive stake in 13G filing ),TASR +2.8% (receives an order for 300 Axon body-worn cameras and a five year subsciption to Evidence.com, from the Fresno Police Dept; order shipped in Q2),FCAU +2.7% (completes the syndication of its committed revolving credit facility; increasing its size to EUR 5 bln from EUR 4.8 bln, to be used for working capital and general purposes),BLUE +2% (following JUNO news),ABIO +2% (Growth Equity Opportunities discloses 21.3% active stake in 13D filing),FEYE +2% (cont vol),FGP +1.7% (Jamex, LLC discloses 9.5% passive stake in 13G filing),JKS +1.6% (amends it credit agreement, raising the limit to $40 mln from $20 mln),GIII +1.5% (favorable commentary on Monday's Mad Money),CYCC +1.3% (cont strength)

Analyst comments: ING +3.3% (upgraded to Buy from Neutral at BofA/Merrill),FIT +3.1% (initiated with a Outperform at RBC Capital Mkts),SRPT +1.8% (positive note from Oppenheimer),PBR +1.3% (upgraded to Hold from Reduce at HSBC)

8:33 am Nova Lifestyle reports that its Board has formed a special committee to consider investment interest, from certain funds and securities industry firms (NVFY) : Co announced that the Company's Board of Directors formed a special committee on June 24, 2015 to consider potential opportunities following the receipt of inquiry letters from certain funds and securities industry firms that have indicated an interest in investing in the Company

  • The Special Committee will consist of Mr. Sammy Ho, Nova LifeStyle's CFO, and four Independent Directors, who will evaluate these opportunities and explore them further with these potential investors and/or their representatives. These inquiries that the Company has received are preliminary and not specific.

8:32 am Vaalco Energy appoints Cary Bounds Chief Operating Officer effective July 6, 2015 (EGY) : Co announced that Cary Bounds will join VAALCO as Chief Operating Officer effective July 6, 2015. From 2010 until joining VAALCO, Mr. Bounds was employed with Noble Energy where he held upstream positions in international assets management, including Business Unit Manager, Equatorial Guinea Assets, and Country Manager, North Sea.

8:31 am Tuesday Morning CFO Jeffrey Boyer has resigned, effective as of July 22 (TUES) : Co announces that Jeffrey Boyer, Executive Vice President, Chief Administrative Officer and Chief Financial Officer, has resigned his position effective as of July 22, 2015 to pursue other professional opportunities.

  • Tuesday Morning has commenced a comprehensive search for Mr. Boyer's replacement with the assistance of an executive search firm. 
  • Tuesday Morning currently anticipates that VP and Controller, Kelly Munsch, will be responsible for the Company's accounting and finance functions on an interim basis until Mr. Boyer's replacement is appointed.

8:31 am Pier 1 Imports appoints Jeffrey N. Boyer Executive Vice President and CFO (PIR) : Boyer most recently served as EVP, CAO and CFO for Tuesday Morning (TUES).

8:31 am Energy Focus announced that it has shipped its first order for the Royal Australian Navy (EFOI) :

  • The order consists of Energy Focus' military Intellitube LED tubes and full fixture LED bunk lights for one of the Royal Navy's twelve frigate-class warships and totals approximately half a million dollars. The Royal Australian Navy fleet is made up of 48 commissioned warships.
  • Energy Focus, Inc., which remains the only U.S. Navy military-spec qualified tubular LED lamp provider and maintains its manufacturing and assembly capabilities for the product in the United States, is now actively pursuing expansion of the U.S. Navy qualified product to allied navies worldwide with a total addressable market for Energy Focus larger than that of the U.S. Navy.

8:31 am European Yields (BONDX) : Sovereign Yields Stabilize Despite Greek Headlines

  • European government bonds are little changed today as peripheral/core spreads appear complacent in the face of imminent Grexit
  • The eurozone's headline CPI grew 0.2% y/y in June versus a 0.3% gain in May
    • Core CPI increased 0.8% in June versus 0.9% in May
    • Both readings were in line with expectations
  • Eurozone unemployment was 11.1% in May, in line with expectations and unchanged from April
  • Consumer Spending in France rose 0.1% m/m in May, better than expected and unchanged from April
  • German Retail Sales jumped 0.5% in May, ahead of expectations but worse than the 1.3% growth in April
  • Greece will not likely make its 1.55 mln euro payment to the IMF, due today
    • Failure to do so would not constitute technical default
    • There are rumors that a deal between Greek PM Alexis Tsipras and EU Commission President Juncker is in the offing
    • If there is no deal, the referendum on a bailout extension will be voted on by Greeks on July 5th
      • This is an odd situation, because the bailout extension will be technically void by then and any new agreement would have to be approved by the parliaments of the eurozone members, in theory
      • This whole crisis is calling the EU's distributed decision-making process into question, particularly when it comes to handling time-sensitive decisions
  • Yield Check:
    • France, 10-yr OAT: -2 bps to 1.22%
    • Germany, 10-yr Bund: -2 bps to 0.78%
    • Greece, 10-yr note: +40 bps to 15.09%
    • Italy, 10-yr BTP: -4 bps to 2.34%
    • Portugal, 10-yr note: -2 bps to 3.03%
    • Spain, 10-yr Bono: +1 bp to 2.33%
    • U.K., 10-yr Gilt: -5 bps to 2.04%

8:31 am Pingtan Marine Enterprise purchases six fishing vessels from two companies for ~RMB 344.4 million; the vessels are currently licensed/sanctioned by the Chinese Fisheries Mgmt Bureau (PME) :  

8:31 am Alcoa to permanently close its Poos de Caldas primary aluminum smelter in Brazil on June 30, 2015, expects to record restructuring-related charges in second quarter 2015 between $100 million and $110 million after-tax (AA) : Co announced that it will permanently close its Poos de Caldas primary aluminum smelter in Brazil on June 30, 2015. The smelter has been curtailed since May 2014 and the underlying market conditions that led to the curtailment have not improved.  As a result of the closure, Alcoa expects to record restructuring-related charges in second quarter 2015 between $100 million and $110 million after-tax, or $.08 to $.09 per share, of which approximately 60 percent is non-cash.

8:31 am Pep Boys announces its Board of Directors has commenced a review of strategic alternatives to enhance shareholder value, including a possible sale, merger or other form of business combination or strategic transaction (PBY) : The Board will be assisted in its review by Rothschild as its financial advisor and Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP as its legal advisor, each of whom has been advising the Board in connection with the various inquiries that have been previously received from third parties expressing an interest in a potential transaction.

8:30 am Signal Genetics signs a Master Service Agreement with a leading pharmaceutical company (SGNL) : Co signed of a Master Service Agreement (MSA) with a leading pharmaceutical company. Under the MSA, Signal's proprietary MyPRS genetic test will be run across multiple clinical trials in connection with the development of novel treatments for patients with multiple myeloma.

  • Signal and the pharmaceutical company have triggered the first of four studies as part of the MSA. Under the agreement, MyPRS will help inform patterns of response to novel therapy regimens with the aim of enabling physicians to better manage multiple myeloma patients based on their specific genetic profile.

8:30 am CNX Coal Resources LP again adjusts the terms of its planned IPO; now selling 5 mln units at expected price of $15/unit (CNXC) :

  • The company released a further amended S1 adjusting the terms of its planned IPO as well as its concurrent private placement with Greenlight Capital. CNXC is now offering 5 mln units at $15/unit, down from last weeks change to offer 8 mln units at $15/unit and original plans to offer 10 mln units between $19.00-$21.00. 
  • Alongside the second reduction in the size of its planned offering, the company also adjusted the terms of its concurrent private placement with Greenlight Capital:
    • The co disclosed that certain funds managed by Greenlight Capital, Inc. and its affiliates have entered into a common unit purchase agreement with us pursuant to which Greenlight Capital has agreed to purchase, and we have agreed to sell, at least 2,000,000 common units and up to 5,000,000 common units at a price per unit equal to $15.00 in a concurrent private placement transaction (already known). "We will sell a number of common units to Greenlight Capital in the concurrent private placement, subject to the limitations in the preceding sentence, such that the aggregate number of common units sold in this offering and the concurrent private placement will equal 10,000,000 common units. If we sell more than 5,000,000 common units in this offering (other than as a result of the exercise of the underwriters' option to purchase additional common units), we will sell a correspondingly fewer amount of common units to Greenlight Capital in the concurrent private placement. The closing of the concurrent private placement is conditioned upon the closing of this offering on or before July 9, 2015 as well as certain customary closing conditions"

8:29 am S&P futures vs fair value: +14.00. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: +29.80. (:WRAPX) : The S&P 500 futures trade 14 points above fair value.

There were broad-based gains across markets in the Asia-Pacific region on Tuesday as Monday's sell-off triggered some bargain-hunting activity. China's Shanghai Composite led all comers. After enduring an early 5.1% decline that left the Composite down 26% from its June 12 peak, the market came roaring back and ended the session with a 5.5% gain as investors embraced the thought of the government and central bank doing more to prevent a continued market decline.

  • In economic data: 
    • Japan's May Housing Starts +5.8% year-over-year (expected +5.8%; prior +0.4%), May Construction Orders -7.4% year-over-year (prior -12.1%), and Average Cash Earnings +0.6% year-over-year (expected +0.7%; prior +0.7%) 
    • Hong Kong's M3 Money Supply +14.3% (prior +14.2%) 
    • South Korea's May Industrial Production -1.3% month-over-month (expected -0.7%; prior -1.3%); -2.8% year-over-year (expected -2.0%; prior -2.6%), Retail Sales 0.0% month-over-month (expected +0.5%; prior +1.4%), and July Manufacturing BSI Index 67 (prior 74) 
    • Australia's May HIA New Home Sales -2.3% month-over-month (prior +0.6%) 
    • Singapore's May Bank Lending SGD 597.0 bln (prior SGD 594.3 bln) 
------
  • Japan's Nikkei increased 0.6% on broad-based gains that were led by the consumer non-cyclical (+1.2%) and communications (+0.9%) sectors. Individual standouts included Shionogi & Co (+7.8%), Aeon (+6.8%), and Nippon Paper Industries (+3.6%). Sony Corp (-8.3%) led all decliners. Out of the 225 index members, 134 ended higher, 77 finished lower, and 14 were unchanged. 
  • Hong Kong's Hang Seng increased 1.1%, rallying in suit with a strong showing out of the mainland market. The financial sector (+0.8%) was an influential mover, yet gains were led by the energy (+1.4%) and basic materials (+1.3%) sectors. Leading gainers included China Resources Land (+4.1%), Bank of Communications (+4.1%), and Lenovo Group (+4.1%). Sands China (-2.1%) and Cathay Pacific Airways (-1.0%) were the only two stocks to decline at least 1.0%. Out of the 50 index members, 40 ended higher, 9 finished lower, and 1 was unchanged. 
  • China's Shanghai Composite declined 5.1% shortly after the start of trading but came roaring back as the session progressed and ended the day up 5.5% (the market saw an 11.2% intraday swing from low to high). Reports attributed the turnaround to confidence in the prospect of the government and central bank taking more steps to prevent a stock market meltdown, including possibly halting IPOs. China's CSI 300 Index jumped 6.7% with the technology (+8.9%) and financial (+7.5%) helping to set the pace. 
Major European indices trade in mixed fashion with UK's FTSE (-0.4%) in the red while Italy's MIB (+0.7%) outperforms. As expected, Greece did not make its EUR1.60 billion debt payment to the International Monetary Fund with the focus now turning to the country's referendum on Sunday, July 5. That being said, German Chancellor Angela Merkel reminded recently that Greece's current bailout program expires at midnight. Meanwhile, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said Greece could stay in the Eurozone even if Sunday's referendum produces a 'no' vote.
  • Economic data was plentiful: 
    • Eurozone June CPI +0.2% month-over-month, as expected, while May Unemployment Rate held at 11.1%, as expected 
    • Germany's June Unemployment Change -1,000 (consensus -5,000; prior -5,000) while the Unemployment Rate held at 6.4%. Separately, May Retail Sales +0.5% month-over-month (expected 0.2%; prior 1.3%); -0.4% year-over-year (consensus 2.8%; last 1.1%) 
    • UK's Q1 GDP was revised up to 0.4% from 0.3% quarter-over-quarter, as expected. Separately, Q1 Business Investment +2.0% quarter-over-quarter (consensus 1.8%; last 1.7%) and Q1 Current Account deficit narrowed to GBP26.60 billion from GBP28.90 billion (expected deficit of GBP23.80 billion) 
    • France's May Consumer Spending +0.1% month-over-month (expected -0.1%; prior 0.1%) 
    • Italy's May PPI +0.2% month-over-month while June CPI +0.1% month-over-month, as expected. Separately, May Unemployment Rate held at 12.4% (consensus 12.3%) 
------
  • UK's FTSE remains lower by 0.4% as consumer names weigh. Tesco and Sainsbury are both down near 2.2% while utilities Centrica and United Utilities Group also lag with respective losses of 1.4% and 1.7%. On the upside, ARM Holdings is higher by 0.9% and Hikma Pharmaceuticals has climbed 1.0%. 
  • In France, the CAC trades flat after erasing a morning loss. Financials BNP Paribas, Credit Agricole, and Societe Generale have contributed to the rebound with gains between 1.1% and 1.4%. Similar to UK, consumer names are also among the laggards in France with Carrefour, LVMH, and Pernod Ricard down between 0.9% and 2.0%. 
  • Germany's DAX is higher by 0.2% with financials among the leaders. Commerzbank, Deutsche Bank, and Deutsche Boerse are up between 0.6% and 1.5%. On the downside, heavyweights Siemens, Merck, and SAP are down between 0.4% and 0.6%. 
  • Italy's MIB has climbed 0.7% with Banca di Milano Scarl, Banco Popolare, UBI Banca, and Unicredit up between 2.0% and 3.5%.

8:27 am On the Wires (:WIRES) :

  • OSI Systems (OSIS) announced that its Healthcare division, Spacelabs Healthcare, has received an ~ $5 million order to provide patient monitoring solutions and related accessories to a prominent U.S. hospital.
  • API Technologies (ATNY) announced that Domingo Isasi has been named to the newly created role of Vice President of Continuous Improvement for API Technologies, effective June 29, 2015
  • Charles Schwab (SCHW) announced it is adding one new ETF provider-J.P. Morgan Asset Management-and nine new ETFs to Schwab ETF OneSource platform for commission-free ETF. The additions are in currency-hedged ETFs and strategic beta funds across both U.S. and international markets
  • Hughes Network Systems, a subsidiary of EchoStar Corporation (SATS) announced that Springleaf Holdings has selected it to provide high-speed connectivity across its nationwide branch network and centralized operations
  • Ares Management (ARES) announced that a fund managed by the Ares EIF Group and developer Genesis Power, LLC has sold the 755-MW Keys Energy Center project located in Prince George's County, Maryland to PSEG Power, a subsidiary of PSEG (PEG). PSEG Power anticipates beginning construction of the ~$825 - $875 mln natural gas-fired, combined-cycle plant in the fall of 2015, with targeted completion in 2018.
  • Tecogen (TGEN) announced the sale of a CM-60 combined heat and power module to the Columbia Association in Columbia, Maryland
  • Kyocera Corporation (KYO) announced that it will construct a new manufacturing plant in China, aimed at further strengthening the company's industrial cutting tool business in the country

8:27 am On the Wires (:WIRES) :

  • Oramed Pharmaceuticals (ORMP) announced that it has submitted the study protocol for the company's Phase IIb trial of ORMD-0801, its oral insulin capsule, to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The submission was made under the company's existing Investigational New Drug application
  • PPG Industries (PPG) announced the completion of a $5 million expansion at its coatings manufacturing facility in Wuppertal, Germany. The project added equipment to existing buildings on the campus, supporting up to a 35 percent increase in annual production capacity of environmentally sustainable waterborne coatings
  • InVivo Therapeutics (NVIV) announced that Rutgers New Jersey Medical School in Newark, NJ has been added as a clinical site in the company's ongoing pilot study of its investigational Neuro-Spinal Scaffold in patients with acute spinal cord injury
  • ChinaCache International (CCIH) says it provided the cloud based CDN solutions that helped JD.com (JD) achieve record anniversary sales on June 18, 2015
  • AZZ (AZZ) announced the construction of a new hot-dip galvanizing plant near Reno, Nevada. The new 25 acre plant site is located in the Tahoe-Reno Industrial Center east of Sparks, Nevada will be open for business by January of 2016
  • Verisk Analytics (VRSK) announced that Sean Creighton has joined Verisk Health as vice president for Risk Adjustment Solutions

8:25 am Magnegas reports the successful demonstration of its fuel to several utilities, and requests for additional follow-up demonstrations (MNGA) : Co previously announced that during the week of June 22, it would be demonstrating MagneGas fuel to several utility companies. Those demonstrations were completed last week with decision makers from several top U.S. utility companies in attendance. The Company believes the demonstrations were successful as they have received multiple requests for additional demonstrations as a result of those meetings.

8:15 am European Markets Update: FTSE -0.4%, CAC +0.1%, DAX +0.2%, MIB +0.8% (:SUMRX) : Major European indices trade in mixed fashion with UK's FTSE (-0.4%) in the red while Italy's MIB (+0.8%) outperforms. As expected, Greece did not make its EUR1.60 billion debt payment to the International Monetary Fund with the focus now turning to the country's referendum on Sunday, July 5. That being said, German Chancellor Angela Merkel reminded recently that Greece's current bailout program expires at midnight. Meanwhile, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said Greece could stay in the Eurozone even if Sunday's referendum produces a 'no' vote.

  • Economic data was plentiful: 
    • Eurozone June CPI +0.2% month-over-month, as expected, while May Unemployment Rate held at 11.1%, as expected 
    • Germany's June Unemployment Change -1,000 (consensus -5,000; prior -5,000) while the Unemployment Rate held at 6.4%. Separately, May Retail Sales +0.5% month-over-month (expected 0.2%; prior 1.3%); -0.4% year-over-year (consensus 2.8%; last 1.1%) 
    • UK's Q1 GDP was revised up to 0.4% from 0.3% quarter-over-quarter, as expected. Separately, Q1 Business Investment +2.0% quarter-over-quarter (consensus 1.8%; last 1.7%) and Q1 Current Account deficit narrowed to GBP26.60 billion from GBP28.90 billion (expected deficit of GBP23.80 billion) 
    • France's May Consumer Spending +0.1% month-over-month (expected -0.1%; prior 0.1%) 
    • Italy's May PPI +0.2% month-over-month while June CPI +0.1% month-over-month, as expected. Separately, May Unemployment Rate held at 12.4% (consensus 12.3%) 
------
  • UK's FTSE remains lower by 0.4% as consumer names weigh. Tesco and Sainsbury are both down near 2.2% while utilities Centrica and United Utilities Group also lag with respective losses of 1.4% and 1.7%. On the upside, ARM Holdings is higher by 0.9% and Hikma Pharmaceuticals has climbed 1.0%. 
  • In France, the CAC trades up 0.1% after erasing a morning loss. Financials BNP Paribas, Credit Agricole, and Societe Generale have contributed to the rebound with gains between 1.1% and 1.4%. Consumer names are also among the laggards with Carrefour, LVMH, and Pernod Ricard down between 0.9% and 2.0%. 
  • Germany's DAX is higher by 0.2% with financials among the leaders. Commerzbank, Deutsche Bank, and Deutsche Boerse are up between 0.6% and 1.5%. On the downside, heavyweights Siemens, Merck, and SAP are down between 0.4% and 0.6%. 
  • Italy's MIB has climbed 0.8% with Banca di Milano Scarl, Banco Popolare, UBI Banca, and Unicredit up between 2.0% and 3.5%.

8:15 am Tengasco confirms that ICN Fund I, LLC commenced an unsolicited tender offer on June 26, 2015 to acquire all of the outstanding shares of Tengasco common stock for $0.2736/share (TGC) : The co says its Board of Directors, in consultation with its advisors, will review the offer.

8:09 am iKang Healthcare Group forms joint venture with former shareholders of Yinchuan Ciming Clinic (KANG) : Yinchuan Ciming was franchised from Ciming Checkup Group. iKang now owns 70% equity in the Joint Venture, which itself controls 100% ownership of Yinchuan Ciming. Yinchuan Ciming is the largest private preventive healthcare services provider in Yinchuan and has been renamed to Yinchuan iKang.

8:09 am Catalyst Pharma appoints Gary Ingenito M.D., Ph.D, as Chief Medical Officer (CPRX) : Ingenito was most recently, head of regulatory affairs North America for biosimilars at Boehringer-Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals

8:07 am Kite Realty upsizes its existing Unsecured Term Loan Credit Facility from $230 million to $400 million (KRG) : The Company exercised an existing accordion option feature to increase the amount by $170 million.

8:06 am Theravance Biopharma announces that the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation has granted marketing authorization for VIBATIV, to treat skin and soft tissue infections (TBPH) : VIBATIV will be marketed and sold in Russia by R-Pharm and is expected to become commercially available in September

8:05 am Omnova Solutions reports EPS in-line, misses single rev estimate; reaffirms earnings growth guidance (OMN) :

  • Reports Q2 (May) earnings of $0.11 per share, excluding non-recurring items, in-line with the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.11; revenues fell 17.3% year/year to $220.2 mln vs the $279.5 mln single est.
  • Co continues to expect significant growth in Adjusted Diluted Earnings Per Share for the full 2015 fiscal year (consensus $0.43 vs. $0.28 last year).
  • "Revenue declined in the second quarter compared to last year, primarily as a result of contract- based index price reductions related to declines in raw material costs. Foreign exchange weakness, primarily related to the Euro, also unfavorably impacted sales. While volume declined modestly overall, we were encouraged by volume increases in key specialty lines of business including laminates, nonwovens and home & personal care. Although oil & gas volumes were down compared to last year, we continued to see stable volume in high pressure, high temperature applications. Order rates appear to be strengthening in key specialty lines as we enter the second half of the year."

8:03 am NeoThetics, Inc. initiates a post-treatment safety and duration of effect study of LIPO-202 (NEOT) : Co announced the initiation of the post-treatment safety and duration of effect study, LIPO-202-CL-23, of LIPO-202, the first non-invasive injectable drug candidate for reduction of central abdominal bulging due to subcutaneous fat in non-obese subjects.

  • The study is by protocol a safety study to evaluate the post-treatment safety profile of LIPO-202 for up to one year post-treatment. Secondarily, Neothetics will be evaluating post-treatment duration of clinical effect of LIPO-202.
  • This is a supplemental safety study that Neothetics expects to submit to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (:FDA) as part of the company's New Drug Application (:NDA) package for LIPO-202, which the Company anticipates filing in the second half of 2016.

8:02 am Cisco Systems to acquire OpenDNS for $635 mln (CSCO) :

  • Co announced its intent to acquire OpenDNS, a privately held security company based in San Francisco.
  • OpenDNS provides advanced threat protection for any device, anywhere, anytime.
  • The acquisition will boost Cisco's Security Everywhere approach by adding broad visibility and threat intelligence from the OpenDNS cloud delivered platform.
  • Under the terms of the agreement, Cisco will pay $635 million in cash and assumed equity awards, plus retention based incentives for OpenDNS.
  • The acquisition is expected to close in Q1 of FY16, subject to customary closing conditions.

8:02 am Allscripts-Misys Healthcare announces purchasing a 10% equity stake in NantHealth for $200 mln in cash (MDRX) : Co announces investments including its purchase of a 10% equity stake in NantHealth for $200 million in cash. In addition, NantCapital, LLC, the personal investment vehicle of Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, founder of NantHealth, has made a $100 million investment into Allscripts. NantHealth is a healthcare IT company providing genomic and protein-based molecular diagnostics testing through its first in class Genomic Proteomic Sequencing (GPS Cancer) diagnostic test. NantHealth is in the process of bringing GPS Cancer to the point of care and into the patient's home through a single integrated clinical platform.

8:02 am Pieris Pharmaceuticals priced public offering of 9,090,909 shares of common stock at $2.75 per share; Trading on NASDAQ to begin today (PIRS) :  

8:01 am United Continental announces a $30 mln equity investment in alternative fuels developer, Fulcrum BioEnergy (UAL) : Co announces a $30 mln equity investment in U.S.-based alternative fuels developer Fulcrum BioEnergy. In addition to the equity investment, UAL and Fulcrum have entered into an agreement that contemplates the joint development of up to five projects located near UAL's hubs expected to have the potential to produce up to 180 mln gallons of fuel per year.

8:01 am CB&I announced it has been awarded a contract valued at ~$115 mln, as part of an ethylene project (CBI) : Co announces it has been awarded a contract valued at approximately $115 million, as part of the scope of the ethylene project, by Ingleside Ethylene, a joint venture between Mexichem and Occidental Chemical, a subsidiary of Occidental Petroleum (OXY), for the engineering, procurement and construction of an ethylene storage facility in Markham, Texas. 

8:01 am Dot Hill Systems files patent infringement lawsuit against Crossroads Systems (CRDS) (HILL) :

  • Co announces it filed suit yesterday against Crossroads Systems (CRDS) for patent infringement in United States District Court in Denver. 
  • The asserted patent, U.S. Patent No. 7,277,995, covers access control technology for data storage systems and is asserted against Crossroads' StrongBox storage solution.
  • Final written decisions on the validity of Crossroads' '035 patent will issue from the United States Patent Office in early 2016.

8:00 am GTT Communications and AT&T (T) enter into an Interconnection Agreement (GTT) : GTT Communications (GTT) and AT&T (T), have signed a long-term, bilateral agreement for their IP networks. Few details provided in the press rlease.

7:58 am Sun Life to acquire Prime Advisors; terms not disclosed (SLF) : As of May 31, 2015, Prime Advisors had ~$13 billion in assets under management on behalf of clients. Following completion of the transaction, Prime will operate as a standalone unit of Sun Life Investment Management.

7:57 am S&P futures vs fair value: +13.10. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: +26.40. (:WRAPX) : U.S. equity futures trade higher amid mixed action overseas. The S&P 500 futures hover 13 points above fair value after hitting their best levels of the morning nearly three hours ago.

Meanwhile, U.S. Treasuries hover in the red with the 10-yr yield up nearly three basis points at 2.35%.

Today's economic data will include the 9:00 ET release of the April Case-Shiller 20-city Index (Briefing.com consensus 5.6%), June Chicago PMI (consensus 50.0), which will be reported at 9:45 ET, and Consumer Confidence for June, which will cross at 10:00 ET (expected 97.5).

In U.S. corporate news of note:

  • Apollo Education Group (APOL 14.00, -1.54): -9.9% after its below-consensus revenue and lowered guidance overshadowed better than expected earnings. 
  • ConAgra (CAG 44.63, +1.20): +2.8% after reporting in-line results and outlining a new strategic direction. 
  • Juno Therapeutics (JUNO 62.60, +16.30): +35.2% after announcing collaboration efforts with Celgene (CELG 113.50, -1.41) that include a purchase of Juno stock by Celgene. 
Reviewing overnight developments:
  • Asian markets ended higher. Japan's Nikkei +0.6%, Hong Kong's Hang Seng +1.1%, and China's Shanghai Composite +5.5% 
    • In economic data: 
      • Japan's May Housing Starts +5.8% year-over-year (expected +5.8%; prior +0.4%), May Construction Orders -7.4% year-over-year (prior -12.1%), and Average Cash Earnings +0.6% year-over-year (expected +0.7%; prior +0.7%) 
      • Hong Kong's M3 Money Supply +14.3% (prior +14.2%) 
      • South Korea's May Industrial Production -1.3% month-over-month (expected -0.7%; prior -1.3%); -2.8% year-over-year (expected -2.0%; prior -2.6%), Retail Sales 0.0% month-over-month (expected +0.5%; prior +1.4%), and July Manufacturing BSI Index 67 (prior 74) 
      • Australia's May HIA New Home Sales -2.3% month-over-month (prior +0.6%) 
      • Singapore's May Bank Lending SGD 597.0 bln (prior SGD 594.3 bln) 
    • In news: 
      • Equities in China spiked off their overnight lows after it was reported China Securities Regulatory Commission will delay an IPO planned by China Nuclear Engineering
  • Major European indices trade in mixed fashion. UK's FTSE -0.4%, France's CAC -0.1%, and Germany's DAX is flat. Elsewhere, Italy's MIB +0.7% and Spain's IBEX +0.2% 
    • Economic data was plentiful: 
      • Eurozone June CPI +0.2% month-over-month, as expected, while May Unemployment Rate held at 11.1%, as expected 
      • Germany's June Unemployment Change -1,000 (consensus -5,000; prior -5,000) while the Unemployment Rate held at 6.4%. Separately, May Retail Sales +0.5% month-over-month (expected 0.2%; prior 1.3%); -0.4% year-over-year (consensus 2.8%; last 1.1%) 
      • UK's Q1 GDP was revised up to 0.4% from 0.3% quarter-over-quarter, as expected. Separately, Q1 Business Investment +2.0% quarter-over-quarter (consensus 1.8%; last 1.7%) and Q1 Current Account deficit narrowed to GBP26.60 billion from GBP28.90 billion (expected deficit of GBP23.80 billion) 
      • France's May Consumer Spending +0.1% month-over-month (expected -0.1%; prior 0.1%) 
      • Italy's May PPI +0.2% month-over-month while June CPI +0.1% month-over-month, as expected. Separately, May Unemployment Rate held at 12.4% (consensus 12.3%) 
    • Among news of note: 
      • As expected, Greece did not make its EUR1.60 billion debt payment to the International Monetary Fund with the focus now turning to the country's referendum on Sunday, July 5

7:56 am On the Wires (:WIRES) :

  • Milestone Scientific (MLSS) announced that its Epidural & Intra-Articular Subsidiary has commenced the first shipments of its CompuFlo Epidural Instrument to distributors in Europe
  • Aeterna Zentaris Inc. (AEZS) announced it has reached its goal of recruiting 500 patients for its pivotal Phase 3 ZoptEC clinical study with zoptarelin doxorubicin in women with advanced, recurrent or metastatic endometrial cancer. Following its first pre-specified interim analysis last April, a Data and Safety Monitoring Board recommended that the ZoptEC Phase 3 study continue as planned. A second interim analysis is expected during Q4, 2015 at approximately 192 events, with the final analysis planned at an anticipated 384 events. The trial is expected to be completed by the end of 2016.
  • Yingli Green Energy Holding Company Limited (YGE) announced that it completed a $3.2 million bond financing for a 4 megawatt (MW) solar project
  • Jacobs Engineering Group (JEC) announced that its Aurecon Jacobs Mott MacDonald joint venture has been appointed as the technical, planning and engagement advisor for the Melbourne Metro Rail Project in Victoria, Australia

7:53 am Fiat Chrysler completes the syndication of its committed revolving credit facility; increasing its size to EUR 5 bln from EUR 4.8 bln, to be used for working capital and general purposes (FCAU) :  

7:51 am Prana Biotech announces the safety outcomes of the IMAGINE Extension study in patients with Alzheimer's disease.

(PRAN) : A 250mg dose of PBT2 was safe and well tolerated over a 2 year period. The independent Data Safety Monitoring Board did not identify any safety concerns related to PBT2. The IMAGINE Extension Study allowed all 40 participants who completed the original 12 month IMAGINE trial to receive PBT2 for a further 12 months. In all, 33 out of the 40 eligible IMAGINE patients elected to continue onto the Extension study. It was an Open Label study, with all participants taking PBT2. A total of 27 patients completed the Extension Study. Clinical and scientific experts are reviewing the effects of PBT2 taken for 2 years. The safety data will form part of the package presented to the FDA as part of our goal to remove the Partial Clinical Hold on PBT2 in the US.

  • The co says it will continue to work with the US Food and Drug Administration and other agencies to initiate a Phase 3 trial for PBT2 to treat Huntington disease. PBT2 for the treatment of Huntington disease was recently granted Orphan designation in Europe and was granted Orphan designation in the US in 2014.

7:41 am Overnight Treasury Summary (BONDX) : Treasury Yields Edge Higher

  • U.S. Treasuries gave back some of Monday's gains overnight as hopes emerged for a deal between Greece and its creditor institutions
  • Yield Check:
    • 2-yr: +1 bp to 0.65%
    • 5-yr: +1 bp to 1.64%
    • 10-yr: +1 bp to 2.34%
    • 30-yr: unch at 3.10%
  • International News:
    • Eurozone headline CPI and Core CPI for June came out in line with estimates at 0.2% and 0.8% growth y/y, respectively
      • Eurozone unemployment was 11.1% in May, unchanged from April and in line with expectations
    • German Retail Sales growth of 0.5% m/m in May exceeded expectations but fell short of the 1.3% growth seen in April
    • French Consumer Spending rose 0.1% m/m in May, ahead of expectations and in line with April's number
    • GDP growth in the U.K. was 0.4% according to the final revision released earlier today
    • Chinese equities finally saw some relief, with the Shanghai Composite climbing 5.53% to 4,277
    • While Greece is expected to miss its 1.55 bln euro payment to the IMF today, failure in and of itself would not constitute technical default
      • The 2nd bailout program officially expires today and the ECB can elect tomorrow to cut off Greek banks from the ELA (Emergency Liquidity Assistance)
      • Greece's failure to pay the IMF will give the Emergency Financial Stability Fund (:EFSF) and the European Stability Mechanism (:ESM) the option of withholding their funding
    • As of the past half hour, comments from officials in the Greek government are indicating that Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras may be going to Brussels to discuss a deal based on a proposal from EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker. While it would not be in place soon enough to get the IMF paid on time, the deal could be done before the referendum scheduled for July 5th
  • Data out Today:
    • April Case-Shiller 20-City Index (09:00 ET)
    • June Chicago PMI (09:45 ET)
    • June Consumer Confidence (10:00 ET)
  • Fed Speaker:
    • St. Louis Fed President Bullard (non-FOMC voter) (18:00 ET)

7:40 am ConAgra reports EPS in-line, revs in-line; outline new strategic direction, plans to exit private label business; will provide more details on restructuring and give FY16 guidance in the fall; guides Q1 EPS down (CAG) :

  • Reports Q4 (May) earnings of $0.59 per share, excluding non-recurring items, in-line with the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.59; revenues rose 3.7% year/year to $4.1 bln vs the $4.14 bln consensus. 
    • Consumer Foods and Commercial Foods posted operating profit growth after adjusting for items impacting comparability, and including the benefit of the extra week.
    • Private Brands posted an operating profit decline after adjusting for items impacting comparability, and including the benefit of the extra week. 
  • The co plans to exit the Private Brands operations -- which accounted for 26% of sales but posted a $1.45 bln operating loss in FY15.
  • The company's new plans for creating long-term value center on a more aggressive approach to cost reduction, growing consumer brands (Consumer Foods segment) and Lamb Weston (within the Commercial Foods segment), as well as balanced capital allocation. 
    • Details to be shared at an investor event later this year. 
  • The co will offer details on full-year fiscal 2016 expected EPS, as well as long-term financial guidance, at an investor event likely to be scheduled for the fall of 2015. This event will be scheduled after the co completes its assessment of strategic alternatives for the Private Brands operations, and determines SG&A reduction targets and investment needs for the remainder of the co. 
  • Guides Q1 EPS down: With regard to first quarter of fiscal 2016, which the company expects to be unaffected by the outcome of the review of strategic alternatives for the Private Brands operations, the co expects EPS, adjusted for items impacting comparability, to be roughly in line with comparable year-ago amounts (consensus $0.44 vs. $0.39 last year)

7:32 am TASER receives an order for 300 Axon body-worn cameras and a five year subsciption to Evidence.com, from the Fresno Police Dept; order shipped in Q2 (TASR) :  

7:31 am Cancer Genetics is awarded a multimillion dollar clinical trial in hematological cancers by a leading biotech company (CGIX) :

  • As part of the agreement, CGI will perform all testing, and provide genomic information and monitoring for CLL patients enrolled in multi-arm, randomized, multicenter, global trials. 
  • The trials are expected to contribute up to $6.2 million in revenue over several years

7:31 am Corning acquires the pharmaceutical glass tubing business of Gerresheimer AG for EUR 196 mln (GLW) :

  • As part of this transaction, Corning and Gerresheimer will enter into a long-term supply agreement for pharmaceutical glass tubing. In addition, the companies will form an equity venture to focus on accelerating Corning innovations for the pharmaceutical glass packaging market. The equity venture will be 75% owned by Corning.

7:30 am Enanta Pharmaceuticals adds new Chief Medical Officer (ENTA) :

  • Co announced the appointment of Nathalie Adda, M.D., as Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, responsible for clinical and regulatory affairs.
  • Dr. Adda is a specialist in infectious disease and has more than 15 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry in all phases of global clinical research and development and commercialization.
  • Most recently, Dr. Adda was Chief Medical Officer, VP Clinical Development, Medical and Regulatory Affairs at Transgene SA, where she led the Oncology and Infectious Disease programs since 2012. From 2006 to 2012, she was Senior Medical Director and the medical lead for the Incivek (telaprevir) Clinical Program at Vertex Pharmaceuticals.

7:29 am On the Wires (:WIRES) :

  • Sino-Global Shipping (SINO) announced that it secured a first priority ship lien from Rong Yao International Shipping Limited on the 8,818 gross tonnage oil/chemical transportation tanker called the "Rong Zhou", being acquired by the Company and received a net payment of $225,000 in the first month of operation under a previously disclosed two-year time charter agreement for the Vessel which obligates the chartering party to pay Sino-Global every 15 days at a daily rate of $7,500.
  • Xilinx (XLNX) announced its collaboration with China Mobile (CHL) Research Institute for the development of the next generation fronthaul interface. With the advent of 5G wideband multi-antenna systems, Xilinx and CMRI are working together to research the key technologies and components of a new fronthaul interface for wireless networks, in conjunction with emerging technologies such as C-RAN, large-scale-antenna-system, and 3D MIMO
  • Ignyta (RXDX) announced the release for clinical use of its first clinical trial assay to support patient identification and enrollment into its STARTRK clinical development program for Entrectinib
  • AVEO Oncology (AVEO) announced that additional biomarker analyses from the BATON CRC study will be presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology 17th World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer
  • ADMA Biologics (ADMA) announced that the USPTO has issued a Notice of Allowance for its U.S. patent application entitled Compositions and Methods For The Treatment of Immunodeficiency
  • National Research Corporation (NRCIA) was recently selected by AngMar Medical Holdings to implement its full line of OCS HomeCare products, including Home Health Cahps and the Healthcare Information Platform

7:25 am Hillenbrand names Eric M. Teegarden as its Vice President, Controller and Chief Accounting Officer, effective July 20, 2015 (HI) : Teegarden joins Hillenbrand from General Electric (GE) where he served in a variety of financial roles since 2007

7:13 am Asian Markets Close: Japan's Nikkei +0.6%; Hong Kong's Hang Seng +1.1%; China's Shanghai Composite +5.5% (:SUMRX) : There were broad-based gains across markets in the Asia-Pacific region on Tuesday as Monday's sell-off triggered some bargain-hunting activity. China's Shanghai Composite led all comers. After enduring an early 5.1% decline that left the Composite down 26% from its June 12 peak, the market came roaring back and ended the session with a 5.5% gain as investors embraced the thought of the government and central bank doing more to prevent a continued market decline.

Economic data

  • Japan
    • May Housing Starts +5.8% year-over-year (expected +5.8%; prior +0.4%)
    • May Construction Orders -7.4% year-over-year (prior -12.1%)
    • Average Cash Earnings +0.6% year-over-year (expected +0.7%; prior +0.7%)
  • Hong Kong
    • M3 Money Supply +14.3% (prior +14.2%)
  • South Korea
    • May Industrial Production -1.3% month-over-month (expected -0.7%; prior -1.3%); -2.8% year-over-year (expected -2.0%; prior -2.6%)
    • Retail Sales 0.0% month-over-month (expected +0.5%; prior +1.4%)
    • July Manufacturing BSI Index 67 (prior 74)
  • Australia
    • May HIA New Home Sales -2.3% month-over-month (prior +0.6%)
  • Singapore
    • May Bank Lending SGS 597.0 bln (prior SGD 594.3 bln)
Equity Markets
  • Japan's Nikkei increased 0.6% on broad-based gains that were led by the consumer non-cyclical (+1.2%) and communications (+0.9%) sectors. Individual standouts included Shionogi & Co (+7.8%), Aeon (+6.8%), and Nippon Paper Industries (+3.6%). Sony Corp (-8.3%) led all decliners. Out of the 225 index members, 134 ended higher, 77 finished lower, and 14 were unchanged.
  • Hong Kong's Hang Seng increased 1.1%, rallying in suit with a strong showing out of the mainland market. The financial sector (+0.8%) was an influential mover, yet gains were led by the energy (+1.4%) and basic materials (+1.3%) sectors. Leading gainers included China Resources Land (+4.1%), Bank of Communications (+4.1%), and Lenovo Group (+4.1%). Sands China (-2.1%) and Cathay Pacific Airways (-1.0%) were the only two stocks to decline at least 1.0%. Out of the 50 index members, 40 ended higher, 9 finished lower, and 1 was unchanged.
  • China's Shanghai Composite declined 5.1% shortly after the start of trading but came roaring back as the session progressed and ended the day up 5.5% (the market saw an 11.2% intraday swing from low to high). Reports attributed the turnaround to confidence in the prospect of the government and central bank taking more steps to prevent a stock market meltdown, including possibly halting IPOs. China's CSI 300 Index jumped 6.7% with the technology (+8.9%) and financial (+7.5%) helping to set the pace.
  • India's Sensex increased 0.5%, bolstered by strength in the consumer non-cyclical (+1.8%), basic materials (+1.5%), and communications (+1.5%) sectors. The technology sector (-1.3%) did not participate in Tuesday's advance. Out of the 30 index members, 18 ended higher and 12 finished lower.
  • Australia's S&P/ASX 200 jumped 0.7% and finished near its highs for the day. The industrials (+1.6%), energy (+1.1%), and telecom services (+1.1%) sectors were the best-performing areas. Out of the 200 index members, 130 ended higher, 59 finished lower, and 11 were unchanged.
  • Regional advancers: South Korea +0.7%, Taiwan +0.9%, Malaysia +0.9%, Indonesia +0.6%, Singapore +1.1%, Vietnam +0.2%
  • Regional decliners: Thailand -0.7%, Philippines -0.04%
FX
  • USD/CNY -0.1% at 6.2010
  • USD/INR -0.04% at 63.680
  • USD/JPY -0.1% at 122.38

7:02 am Innocoll: Cogenzia has received Qualified Infectious Disease Product (:QIDP) designation for the treatment of moderate and severe diabetic foot infection from the FDA (INNL) : The Cogenzia gentamicin collagen matrix has received Qualified Infectious Disease Product (:QIDP) designation for the adjunctive treatment of moderate and severe diabetic foot infection from the FDA.

  • The QIDP designation was established as part of the Generating Antibiotic Incentives Now (GAIN) Act, passed by the U.S. Congress in July 2012, to increase the incentives for drug manufacturers to produce new antibiotics for serious and hard-to-treat bacterial and fungal infections. 
  • Receiving QIDP designation means that Cogenzia is now eligible for additional FDA incentives in the approval and marketing path, including Fast Track designation and Priority Review for development and a five-year extension of market exclusivity.

7:02 am Gastar Exploration reports initial and 30-day average production on its second Utica Point/Pleasant well (GST) : The Blake U-7H well located in Marshall County, West Virginia produced at a peak 48-hour gross sales rate of 36.8 MMcf/d of natural gas on a 32/64ths choke with ~6,235 psi of flowing casing pressure. On a restricted flow basis, the well's post peak rate 30-day production averaged 20.2 MMcf/d on a 26/64ths choke with ~ 5,312 psi of flowing casing pressure. The most recent 5-day average rate is 14.8 MMcf/d at ~5,008 psi of flowing casing pressure. The Blake U-7H well was drilled with a lateral length of 6,617 feet and was completed with 34 hydraulic fracturing stages that used ~14.8 million pounds of proppant. Gastar has a 50% working interest in the Blake U-7H well and 41.1% net revenue interest in the well.

7:01 am Broadwind Energy extends its $20 mln credit facility (BWEN) : Under the terms of the new agreement, the facility will transition from a $20 million revolving line of credit to a $15 million revolving line of credit plus a $5 million machinery and equipment term loan. The credit facility has a one-year term, with an annual interest rate of 30-day LIBOR plus 3.25% to 3.50%

7:00 am EnteroMedics prices its offering of ~40.23 mln units of common stock and warrants at $0.87/unit (ETRM) : Co announced the pricing of its previously announced public offering of 40,229,886 units.

  • Each unit consists of one share of common stock, 0.50 of a Series A warrant to purchase one share of common stock, and 0.50 of a Series B warrant to purchase one share of common stock, at a purchase price of $0.87 per unit.  

7:00 am TopBuild will begin trading on the NYSE after being spun off from Masco (MAS) (BLD.TO) :

  • TopBuild installs insulation and other building products nationwide through its TruTeam Contractor Services business, which has over 190 installation branches located in 43 states. 
  • TopBuild distributes insulation and other building products nationwide through its Service Partners business from its 72 distribution centers located in 35 states.
  • CEO on CNBC says housing recovery is on track; 2/3 of business is residential, 1/3 repairs on the commercial side.
  • On June 8, Masco said it anticipates that "regular way" trading of TopBuild common stock will begin on July 1, 2015, the first trading day following the distribution date.

6:50 am China Mobile Games calls extraordinary general meeting of shareholders to vote on the planned acquisition by Pegasus Investment for $22/share (CMGE) : The meeting will be held on July 27, 2015 at 10:00 a.m.

6:49 am Investors Real Estate Trust reports FFO in-line, misses on revs (IRET) : Reports Q4 (Apr) funds from operations of $0.16 per share, in-line with the Capital IQ Consensus  of $0.16; revenues rose 4.4% year/year to $70.8 mln vs the $73.66 mln consensus.

  • "We do believe investors have had concerns about our participation in real estate investments in markets which are affected by energy production in our Region of the country. I want to assure our investors, we are mindful not to expose the Company to any one segment of the economy and we feel very comfortable with our real estate holdings with the true exposure to energy-related industries not material to the scope of the Company."

6:32 am LiveDeal announces intention for future acquisitions to be financed using non-dilutive debt, rather than with company equity (LIVE) : Co has adopted a policy designed to prevent share dilution and to increase stockholder value. LiveDeal now intends for its contemplated acquisitions to be financed and closed using traditional, non-dilutive debt financing rather than using the Company's equity.

  • Co will also rebrand itself with a a new corporate name, "Live Ventures, Inc." 
  • Live Ventures, Inc. will retain the ticker LIVE, and LiveDeal Inc. will become a wholly-owned, fully operating subsidiary of Live Ventures Inc.

6:32 am General Electric: The regulatory review for the sale of its Appliances business to Electrolux (ELUXY) continues (GE) : The regulatory review for the sale of its Appliances business to Electrolux continues. As a result, the deal will not close during the second quarter of this year.

  • Electrolux and GE continue to work actively with the Department of Justice to endeavor to resolve the remaining items in the clearance process, with the goal of closing the deal in 2015. 
    • GE expects an approximate after-tax gain of $0.05-$0.07 per share at closing.
    • GE will also book a $0.03 per share gain in the second quarter as part of an early settlement related to obligations entered into in the initial NBCUniversal joint venture with Comcast, which was announced in 2011. As a result, GE expects gains to offset restructuring and other charges during Q2.

6:31 am JinkoSolar Holding amends it credit agreement, raising the limit to $40 mln from $20 mln (JKS) :  

6:30 am General Electric confirms Sumitomo Mitsui Banking (SMFG) has made an agreed offer to acquire GE's European Sponsor Finance business for ~$2.2 bln (GE) : GE Capital will retain its $1 billion investment in the European Senior Secured Loan Programme and European Loan Programme, both joint ventures between affiliates of GE Capital and affiliates of Ares Capital. When completed, the portfolio, which represents about $2.2 billion of ENI, will contribute approximately $0.4 billion of capital to the overall target of approximately $35 billion of dividends expected to GE under this plan (subject to regulatory approval).

  • Since the April 10 announcement, GE has signed agreements to sell about $23 billion, including the European Sponsor Finance deal announced today with ENI of $2.2 billion. Other sales during the quarter include $1.2 billion of loans in our UK Home Lending portfolio, plus the previously announced $8.6 billion global Fleet Services business and the approximately $11 billion U.S. Sponsor Finance business.
  • In addition, during the quarter, the sale of GE Capital's Budapest Bank to the Hungarian State closed on June 29 and GE Capital Real Estate closed, in total, approximately $15 billion of previously announced sales

6:30 am On the Wires (:WIRES) :

  • The Ensign Group (ENSG) announced that it has acquired The Orchard Post-Acute Care Center, a 162-bed skilled nursing facility in Whittier, California
  • Nokia (NOK) announced that Bharti Airtel has selected it to roll out its 3G network in 5 new telecom circles and network expansion in 3 existing telecom circles. Under the 4-year contract, the company will provide its radio elements and services expertise to power Bharti Airtel's infrastructure
  • Lombard Medical (EVAR) announced that the first clinical cases using its new Aorfix Plus endovascular stent graft have been successfully completed
  • Acacia Research Corporation (ACTG) announced that its Adaptix subsidiary has entered into a limited settlement and patent license agreement with ZTE (ZTCOF) relating to its infrastructure equipment. The co also announced its Location Based Services subsidiary entered into a settlement and patent license agreement with United States Cellular (USM). Its Location Based Services also entered into a settlement and patent license agreement with Cellco Partnership D/B/A Verizion Wireless (VZ)
  • CNOOC Limited (CEO) announced that its Bozhong 28/34 oilfields comprehensive adjustment project has commenced production
  • Bayer HealthCare (BAYRY) announced that Bayer Yakuhin has submitted an application for marketing authorization for BAY 81-8973, a recombinant Factor VIII compound, as a treatment of hemophilia A. BAY 81-8973 is a full-length recombinant factor VIII which has shown clinical benefit of efficacy when used for prophylaxis twice or three times per week, with standard dosages.

6:30 am On the Wires (:WIRES) :

  • Daqo New Energy Corp (DQ) announced that it has commenced pilot production of the newly added 6,000 MT polysilicon capacity at its Xinjiang site. All the construction and installation work related to the Hydrochlorination system as well as the newly added polysilicon capacity has been completed
  • Statoil (STO), on behalf of the Johan Sverdrup license, has awarded Samsung (SSNLF) the contract for decks for both the process and riser platforms. The total contract value is NOK 7 billion.
    • Co also announced that it and its partners have submitted an amendment to the Plan for Development and Operations for the Gullfaks licence to the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy for phase 1 of the Shetland/Lista development. Phase 1 of the development is expected to add 18 million barrels of oil equivalent, and will help increase the resilience of the area for continued operation of the Gullfaks platforms in the North Sea.
  • BHP Billiton (BHP) announced changes to the Group Management Committee. Dean Dalla Valle, currently President Health, Safety, Environment, Marketing and Technology will become Chief Commercial Officer, assuming accountability for Potash. At the same time, Tim Cutt's title will change to President, 
  • PetroleumErin Energy (ERN) disclosed that it expects the settlement and release with Northern Offshore International Drilling Company Ltd. and Northern Offshore (NFSHF) will result in a reduction in accounts payable and accrued liabilities of approximately $24.3 million, which will be reflected on its balance sheet for the quarter ending June 30, 2015.

6:16 am Daqo New Energy appoints Ming Yang as Chief Financial Officer, effective July 6, 2015 (DQ) : Co also announced that Tracy Tianqun Zhou, currently Chief Marketing Officer, is leaving the Company to pursue personal endeavors, effective June 30, 2015. Succeeding Tracy Zhou as Chief Marketing Officer is Shihua Su, who is currently the acting Chief Financial Officer of the Company and will continue serving in such role until Ming Yang's appointment. Most recently, Yang was a management consultant at McKinsey & Company, where he specialized in the cleantech and solar sectors

6:15 am Pointer Telocation postpones the listing of the shares of its Shagrir Group Vehicle Services subsidiary (PNTR) : The co announced that, further to its announcement of January 2, 2015, that due to regulatory requirements, the listing of the shares of its subsidiary, Shagrir Group Vehicle Services Ltd., has been postponed and Pointer now anticipates that the distribution of the Shagrir shares as a dividend-in-kind and the listing of those shares on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange will take place based on the annual financial statements for the period ending December 31, 2015, which are due to be reported in early 2016. Pointer also announced that in connection with the internal restructuring that was announced on January 2, 2015, in anticipation of the proposed spin-off of Shagrir, Pointer determined that its holdings in Car2Go Ltd., a subsidiary of Pointer, will be transferred to Shagrir. Accordingly, as of July 1, 2015 all of Pointer's holdings in Car2Go Ltd. and all rights and obligations related thereto shall be transferred to Shagrir.

6:01 am China Information Tech enters into a five-year strategic agreement with Guizhou Dianxian Media to install 10,000 units of the CNIT elevator new media terminals (CNIT) : According to the agreement, the Company will provide comprehensive new media solutions including the elevator new media platform, Cloud Nest data analytics, and 21.5-inch CNIT elevator new media terminals. Half of the terminals will be sold to Dianxian Media, and the other half will be rent to it, in either ways, the Company will receive monthly platform service fee from Dianxian Media.

6:01 am Egalet reports top-line results from its oral human abuse liability study of Egalet-002; showing increased effort to manipulate Egalat-002 vs. Oxycontin (EGLT) : Data demonstrated that it took five times the level of effort to manipulate Egalet-002 compared to abuse-deterrent OxyContin. The results of the oral HAL study showed that, after maximal manipulation, drug liking was similar for Egalet-002, IR oxycodone and OxyContin following oral administration in nondependent recreational opioid users. Co stated: "We plan to discuss these results with the FDA as we design a pivotal oral HAL study for Egalet-002."

6:00 am China Digital TV appoints Jianhua Zhu as CEO, effective June 30, 2015; CEO and CTO resign (STV) : The co announced the appointment of Mr. Jianhua Zhu, co-founder of China Digital TV and a director of the Company's board of directors, as chief executive officer of the Company, effective June 30, 2015. Zhu replaces Dr. Zengxiang Lu, who has resigned from his position as acting CEO, effective June 30, 2015, and will remain chairman of the Board. 

  • In addition, Dr. Jian Han has tendered his resignation as chief technology officer of the Company, effective June 16, 2015. Han's responsibilities as CTO will be delegated amongst the executive management team. Dr. Han will continue to serve as general manager of Cyber Cloud, a subsidiary of the Company.

6:00 am Cenovus Energy confirms the sale of its royalty business for CAD $3.3 billion to the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan (CVE) : Co has reached an agreement to sell Heritage Royalty Limited Partnership (HRP.V), a wholly-owned subsidiary, to Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan  for gross cash proceeds of ~ CAD $3.3 billion. HRP holds approximately 4.8 million gross acres of royalty interest and mineral fee title lands in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

  • As a result of the transaction, Cenovus's consolidated production, on a pro forma basis, will be reduced by the 7,800 BOE/d of third-party royalty interest volumes. 
  • Where Cenovus has current working interest production on these fee lands, the company has entered into lease agreements with HRP. Royalty rates and lease terms are attractive to Cenovus and are not expected to materially impact the free cash flow currently generated from these assets

6:00 am Emerson to spin off its Network Power business via a tax-free distribution to shareholders, will also explore strategic alternatives for its motors and drives, power generation and remaining storage businesses (EMR) : The co announced it plans to spin off its Network Power business via a tax-free distribution to shareholders as part of a plan to streamline its portfolio, drive growth, and accelerate value creation for shareholders. Emerson will also explore strategic alternatives for its motors and drives, power generation and remaining storage businesses. In addition, the company will conduct a complete review and assessment of its corporate services and structure to bring them into alignment with its smaller scale and sharper focus. 

  • The various transactions are expected to be substantially completed by September 30, 2016.

5:51 am S&P futures vs fair value: +14.20. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: +29.30. :

5:51 am European Markets : FTSE...6575.41...-45.10...-0.70%.  DAX...11027.52...-55.70...-0.50%.

5:51 am Asian Markets : Nikkei...20235.73...+125.80...+0.60%.  Hang Seng...26250.03...+283.10...+1.10%.

5:51 am Cheetah Mobile obtains increased annual fee caps from Tencent (TCEHY) (CMCM) : Cheetah Mobile (CMCM) announced it has entered into a supplemental agreement with Shenzhen Tencent Computer Systems (TCEHY), which increases the annual cap for promotional services fees payable by Tencent and its subsidiaries and associates to Cheetah Mobile for the year ending 31 December 2015.

  • Under the new supplemental agreement, the annual cap for the year ending 31 December 2015 have been increased from RMB105 million to RMB250 million. 
  • Noting increased demand from Tencent for the Company's mobile advertising services, both companies agreed to raise the annual fee cap. 
  • Aside from the aforementioned revision, all existing terms and conditions under the original Strategic Cooperation Agreement remain unchanged.

4:32 am On The Wires (:WIRES) :

  • Wyplay, creator of software solutions for pay TV operators, and STMicroelectronics (STM) disclosed their contributions to the development of Canal+ Group new "Cube S" set-top-box unveiled on June 9th at a keynote event in Paris 
  • BBVA (BBVA) has entered a multi-year agreement with Broadridge Financial Solutions (BR) for a post-trade Managed Service to support its institutional fixed income business in the U.S. BBVA becomes one of more than two dozen clients to adopt Broadridge's North American Managed Service, an industry-leading utility model that enables BBVA to expand its product offering and gain significant trade processing and cost savings and enhance its risk controls. 
  • Mechel OAO (MTL) reports obtaining a certificate of compliance with the requirements of the Customs Union's Technical Regulations for its rails of up to 100 meters in length. This certificate will enable the company to begin supplying Russian Railways OAO with Chelyabinsk Metallurgical Plant's products.

4:05 am Sony to issue new shares, commence secondary offering and issue convertible bonds (SNE) : Co announced it has decided to issue new shares, together with a secondary offering of shares to cover over-allotments, and to issue 130% callable unsecured convertible bonds with stock acquisition rights.

  • The purpose of this fund raising is to secure funds to invest in growth and to strengthen Sony Corporation's financial base. In addition to securing funds for active and concentrated investment in businesses that are driving growth, Sony Corporation, by increasing shareholders' equity, aims to secure its ability to make future further investment.
  • Sony Corporation plans to apply the funds raised by this issuance of new shares to expenditures for increasing the production capacity of, and research and development for, stacked CMOS image sensors in the Devices segment in order to further enhance profitability. In addition, Sony Corporation plans to apply the funds raised by the convertible bonds to capital expenditures for the Devices segment and repayment of indebtedness. By issuing convertible bonds on a
    zero-coupon basis, Sony Corporation intends to secure low-cost, long-term stable funding, while limiting dilution of its common stock at this time.

4:00 am On The Wires (:WIRES) :

  • Novartis Pharmaceuticals (NVS) announced the release of new features for its ViaOpta applications, and the extension for use with smart watches. The discreet, hands-free nature of using ViaOpta app with wearable devices, such as Apple Watch and Android Wear, provides users with an experience that seamlessly fits into their existing routines allowing those with visual impairments to navigate daily life with even greater ease. 
  • Toshiba Corporation's (TOSBF) Semiconductor & Storage Products Company today announced the launch of a 6TB enterprise capacity hard disk drive optimized for servers supporting cloud-based applications and analytic workloads. 
  • Masimo (MASI) announced that Turgut Ozal Medical Centre Liver Hospital in Malatya, Turkey, has installed Masimo's noninvasive, continuous haemoglobin technology to monitor surgical patients. 
  • Ericsson (ERIC) announced an LTE expansion contract with Chunghwa Telecom Co (CHT), the largest telecom operator in Taiwan. The agreement will further boost Chunghwa Telecom's 4G LTE coverage and capacity with the latest Ericsson mobile broadband technology, and ensure customers will be able to enjoy an enhanced 4G experience.

3:51 am Willis Group and Towers Watson (TW) to combine in merger of equals (WSH) : Willis Group Holdings (WSH) and Towers Watson (TW) announced the signing of a definitive merger agreement under which the companies will combine in an all-stock merger of equals transaction. Based on the closing prices of Willis and Towers Watson common stock on June 29, 2015, the implied equity value of the transaction is approximately $18 billion. The transaction has been unanimously approved by the Board of Directors of each company. The combined company will be named Willis Towers Watson.

  • Willis shareholders will own approximately 50.1% and Towers Watson shareholders will own approximately 49.9% of the combined company on a fully diluted basis.
  • Combination is expected to result in $100-125 million in cost savings to be fully realized within three years of closing, primarily related to the elimination of duplicate corporate costs and economies of scale, in addition to increased efficiencies.

3:48 am Partner Comms creates a new framework for relationship with Orange (ORAN) (PTNR) : Partner Communications (PTNR) announces that it has signed an agreement with Orange which creates a new framework for their relationship.

  • The two companies will use a detailed market study to assess Partner's position within the dynamics of the Israeli telecommunications services marketplace. 
  • The agreement provides both Partner and Orange the right to terminate the current Orange brand license agreement: If Partner does not exercise its right to terminate within 12 months, either Partner or Orange may terminate the Brand Licensing Agreement during the following 12 months. 
  • In addition, the agreement provides for total payments of 40 million to Partner from signing the agreement until completion of the market study, and an additional 50 million should the BLA be terminated within 24 months. Amounts paid to Partner shall, as set forth in the agreement, be reconciled evenly over eight quarters against marketing, sales, customer services and related expenses. 

2:42 am Blackstone sells AlliedBarton to Wendel SE for ~$1.67 bln (BX) : The transaction is expected to close later this year, and is subject to customary regulatory approvals.

2:27 am DBV Technologies (DBVT) completes Phase I of the Viaskin Milk Efficacy and Safety Phase I/II study; initiation of Part B expected in the second half of 2015 pending consultation with regulatory agencies : Co announced the completion of Phase I or Part A, of the Viaskin Milk Efficacy and Safety Phase I/II study. The Data Safety Monitoring Board for the study recommended that the study continue and expressed no safety concerns after evaluating the Part A safety data of subjects treated with a 150 micrograms, 300 micrograms and 500 micrograms doses of Viaskin Milk.

  • Pending review of the Part A data by the FDA and U.S. and Canadian approvals of the revised protocol described below, the Company intends to initiate Part B of the trial in the second half of 2015. Part B, or Phase II, of the MILES study is expected evaluate the efficacy and safety of all three doses of Viaskin Milk (150 micrograms, 300 micrograms, 500 micrograms) versus placebo for 12 months.

2:20 am Amazon: Amazon Web Services announced that it will open an AWS infrastructure region in India for its cloud computing platform in 2016 (AMZN) :  

1:34 am On The Wires (:WIRES) :

  • Caixin Media Co has agreed to sponsor Markit's (MRKT) closely watched China Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI.V). The index will be renamed the Caixin China PMI and will be released beginning in August. 
  • Technip (TKPPY) has been awarded a topsides detailed engineering and procurement services contract by Jurong Shipyard. The project is part of the conversion of a shuttle tanker into a floating, production, storage and offloading (:FPSO) vessel, which is built at the Jurong Shipyard, located in Singapore. 

1:32 am Roche Hldg unit Genentech reports ocrelizumab studies showed superiority on primary and major secondary endpoints in people with relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis (RHHBY) : Genentech, a member of the Roche Group, announced positive results from two pivotal studies evaluating the investigational medicine ocrelizumab compared with interferon beta-1a, a standard-of-care therapy, in people with relapsing multiple sclerosis, the most common form of the disease. The studies (called OPERA I and OPERA II) met their primary and major secondary endpoints.

  • Treatment with ocrelizumab significantly reduced the annualized relapse rate over a two-year period compared with interferon beta-1a, the primary endpoint in both studies. Ocrelizumab also significantly reduced the progression of clinical disability compared with interferon beta-1a, as measured by the Expanded Disability Status Scale 
  • Additionally, treatment with ocrelizumab led to a significant reduction in the number of lesions in the brain (areas of disease activity) compared with interferon beta-1a, as measured by MRI.
  • Co plans to submit the data for review to U.S. and EU regulatory authorities in the first quarter of 2016

1:15 am On The Wires (:WIRES) :

  • Guidewire Software (GWRE) announced the addition of Guidewire Gateway Portal for Agents to its Mobile and Portals product line.  
  • Kurzweil Education, a division of Cambium Learning Group (ABCD), announced that an agreement has been signed between Kurzweil Education and IG3 Education, located in Queensland, Australia, that enables IG3 to sell Kurzweil Education products exclusively in Australia and New Zealand.

1:11 am Pengrowth Energy's insulated sales line connecting the Lindbergh facilities with the Husky pipeline completed on time; Intends to sell up to $600 mln of non-core assets (PGH) : Co reports that construction and commissioning of its insulated sales line connecting the Lindbergh commercial facilities with the Husky pipeline, has been completed on time. Production from the commercial facilities has now been tied-in to the sales line, providing Pengrowth with additional transportation/marketing optionality. Pengrowth still retains the option to move production by rail to markets in an effort to maximize revenues and netbacks.

  • Growth in production from the Lindbergh thermal project continues to meet expectations and closely follows the performance that was established by the pilot wells over the initial months of production. 
  • Current production (five day period ending June 28, 2015) from the project is approximately 14,400 barrels per day with an instantaneous steam oil ratio of 1.99x. Production ramp-up at Lindbergh remains on track to achieve production rates of 16,000 bbl/d by the end of the year. 
Intent to sell assets
As part of its emphasis on strengthening its balance sheet, the Company intends to sell up to $600 million of non-core assets by the end of the year. The proceeds from the expected dispositions will be used to reduce corporate indebtedness under the Company's credit facilities.

1:04 am On The Wires (:WIRES) :

  • Canadian Pacific (CP) and All Vision LLC announced an agreement to enter into a multi-year venture to develop strategic outdoor advertising infrastructure along CP's right of way. 
  • SemCAMS, a subsidiary of SemGroup (SEMG), announced the startup of a new, sour gas gathering line servicing the Wapiti area. The pipeline was officially placed into service on Saturday, June 27, 2015. As previously announced in May 2014, the project is supported by a 10-year term transportation service agreement with NuVista Energy

12:57 am PartnerRe states EXOR's (EXOSF) offer poses significant and unacceptable risks, while also substantially undervaluing the co (PRE) : PartnerRe issues statement that it feels shareholders should understand about the terms of the current EXOR offer:

  • EXOR Acknowledges Risks and Weaknesses in its Offer. The only material modification by EXOR to its proposed contract is that EXOR S.p.A. will now assume responsibility should one of its shell subsidiaries breach the contract. 
  • Regulatory "Walkaway" Risk Remains. Neither EXOR nor the Agnelli Family is obligated under the contract to file and obtain regulatory approval in any jurisdiction.
  • EXOR's Lenders have "Veto" Rights over Regulatory Process. EXOR's lenders continue to have approval rights over concessions made to regulators in connection with securing regulatory approvals.
  • Revised Contract Does Not Protect PartnerRe Shareholders. PartnerRe notes that EXOR has not introduced a customary reverse termination fee, which is necessary for a financial buyer that is unknown to the relevant regulators. PartnerRe does not believe that EXOR's current share ownership and verbal commitments are sufficient to ensure a path to completion. PartnerRe's Board also believes that this normal protection has taken on even greater importance given recent global financial developments.
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