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U.S. stocks opened flat on Monday, following a six-day rally in the benchmark S&P 500, as upbeat manufacturing data in China was offset by soft readings on business activity in Europe. The Dow Jones industrial average was down 0.12 percent at 16,926.45, the S&P 500 was up 0.02 percent at 1,963.26 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 2.09 points, or 0.05 percent, to 4,370.13.
** AROTECH CORP, $4.46, -4.50 pct
The provider of defense and security products' said it expects 2014 revenue in the range of $105 million-$111 million, lower than the $117 million-$123 million it forecast earlier (ID:nPnf6JMT)
The U.S. miner said it "proactively" offered to appoint two new independent directors identified by activist investor Casablanca Capital. Cliffs Natural Resources nominated nine directors to its 11-member board annual meeting scheduled for July 29.
William Blair raised the life sciences company's stock to "outperform" from "market perform". Sequenom was executing on multiple fronts and "a more secure cash situation" from sale of its genetic analysis business earlier this month, analysts said.
The drugmaker said it received FDA approval to start manufacturing its vitamin D injection, Calcitriol.
** EATON CORP PLC ,ETN.N>, $79.28, +2.22 pct
Eaton said it settled a lawsuit with ZF Meritor LLC - joint venture between truck parts maker Meritor and ZF Friedrichshafen AG - for $500 million.
Wedbush downgraded the upscale retailer's stock to "underperform" from "neutral", citing worse near- and mid-term earnings than previously expected following the company's sales warning last week. "We are also concerned about the simultaneous renovation and upgrade of the store fleet as we question the investment given the secular trend towards digital...and Coach's assertion that retail store traffic will not likely improve for some time," analyst Corinna Freedman said and cut her price target to $26 from $40.
The for-profit education provider said it reached an agreement with the U.S. Department of Education that would prevent it from having a cash shortfall. Corinthian said it would immediately receive $16 million in federal student aid funds earned through enrollments that will allow its students to continue their programs. The college operator said last week that its ability to continue as a going concern was in jeopardy after the department extended the waiting period to draw down federal student aid funds.
** ACTAVIS INC, $222.35, +2.52 pct
JP Morgan (Other OTC: JPYYL - news) resumed the Generic drugmaker's stock with an "overweight" rating. Analysts said they see a strong case for multiple expansion for Actavis (NYSE: ACT - news) shares, setting price target of $300. Actavis (Berlin: A60.BE - news) "has transformed itself into a leading global specialty pharma player," the analysts said.
Dov Charney, who was fired as the clothing retailer's chairman last week, plans to engage in talks with the company to shake up its board and management, the company said. Charney holds a 27.2 pct stake in American Apparel. (http://1.usa.gov/1iyOA2G)
** ORACLE CORP, $41.28, +1.13 pct
Oracle (TLO: ORA-U.TI - news) said it would buy Micros Systems in a $5.3 billion deal to expand its offerings for the hospitality and retail industries. The offer of $68 per share represents a premium of 3.4 percent to Micros' Friday close. Micros shares have risen 14 percent since Bloomberg reported on June 17 that the companies were in talks over a deal.
The drugmaker, which is trying to buy London-listed Shire (Dusseldorf: S7E.DU - news) Plc, said it expects business performance to remain strong for the rest of the year and raised its full-year adjusted earnings forecast to $3.06-$3.16 per share from its prior forecast of $3.00-$3.10.
Founder Chip Wilson turned to Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS-PB - news) as he sought a board shakeup at the yogawear retailer, the Wall Street Journal reported. He may consider a proxy fight or joining a private equity firm in a buyout, the Journal said.
The United States FDA approved Cubist's drug, Sivextro, for treating acute bacterial skin infections on Friday.
Jefferies raises price target to $88 from $87, maintains "buy". Analysts said sales would reach about $175 million in 2024, assuming the drug is launched in Europe by 2016.
** INTEGRYS ENERGY GROUP, $69.99, +14.83 pct
JWisconsin Energy Corp said it would buy the energy holding company for $9.1 billion in cash, stock and assumed debt. Shareholders will get 1.128 Wisconsin Energy (NYSE: WEC - news) shares and $18.58 cash per Integrys share - translates to $71.47
** CENTRAL GARDEN & PET CO, $9.875, +9.72 pct
Harbinger offered to buy the retailer for $10 per share, or acquire its pet business for $750 million. The $10 offer represents a 11.1 percent premium to the stock's Friday close. Harbinger may increase the offer if Central Garden engaged in "a constructive dialogue" and grants access to diligence materials.