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Wall Street opened lower on Wednesday as the Turkish liraweakened despite its central bank's bold interest-rate hike andahead of the U.S. Federal Reserve's decision later in the day onits stimulus. The Dow Jones industrial average was down0.52 percent at 15,846.2, the S&P 500 was down 0.44percent at 1,784.67 and the Nasdaq Composite was down0.44 percent at 4,079.833.
The planemaker forecast 2014 results below analysts' averageestimates as it expects margin to fall in both its majorsegments.
** DOW CHEMICAL CO, $45.54, +5.76 pct
The largest U.S. chemical maker by sales reported afourth-quarter profit that comfortably beat market expectations,hiked its dividend and tripled its share buyback program,joining rival DuPont in increasing shareholder returnsamid investor activism.
The company's declining revenue tempered investor confidencein CEO Marissa Mayer's turnaround efforts, prompting severalanalysts to cut their price targets on the stock.
The oilfield services company reported a 32 percent fall inits fourth-quarter profit, hurt by higher materials and suppliescost, higher expenses related to employment of its services. Thecompany's results were also affected by lower pricing for itsservices.
** JONES LANG LASALLE INC, $112.36, +5.69 pct
The company, which provides property and corporatefacilities management services, reported a better-than-expectedquarterly profit helped by a 16 percent jump in fee revenue.
** SILICON LABS, $46.3, +7.57
The chipmaker posted better-than-expected quarterly results,helped by record revenue from microcontrollers and wireless.Silicon Labs said it expects first-quarter revenue to be between$142 million and $146 million, above analyst estimates of $141.2million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
** TERADATA CORP, $43.9, -3.08
Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS-PB - news) cut its rating on the data analytics firm'sstock to "sell" from "neutral," saying customer adoption oflower cost big data technologies would create headwinds to thecompany's growth.
The boutique investment bank reported a quarterly profit butreported a sharp drop in its advisory revenues. Advisoryrevenues fell 25 percent to $75.4 million, while total revenuesfell 17 percent to $76.3 million, during the fourth-quarter.
The telecom company's fourth-quarter wireless subscribergrowth and its free cash flow target lagged well behind analystestimates. Chief Executive Randall Stephenson said a U.S. spyingscandal was hurting the company's business.
At least one brokerage cut its rating on the stock.
** VODAFONE GROUP PLC, $36.74, -1.16 pct
Shareholders of both Vodafone and Verizon (NYSE: VZ - news) approvedVerizon's $130 billion takeover of their Verizon Wirelessventure on Tuesday, paving the way for the third-biggest deal incorporate history.
Vringo said a U.S. court ordered post-judgment royalty rateof 6.5 percent against the internet search giant for continuedand willful patent infringement.
The pawn and payday lender reported a stronger-than-expectedfirst-quarter profit helped by higher merchandise sales in theUnited States and Canada. Merchandise sales rose 12 percent to$105.6 million for the quarter ended Dec. 31.
** FREESCALE SEMICONDUCTOR LTD, $17.79, +16.27 pct
The company, which makes chips for cars and machinery, onTuesday forecast current-quarter revenue above analystsestimates.
Topeka Capital Markets analyst Suji De Silva expectscontinued growth in Freescale's microcontrollers business,multicore network processors and further deployment in the Chinawireless infrastructure market. De Silva raised his price targeton the company's stock to $23 from $19.
Needham & Co LLC raised the stock's rating to "strong buy"from "buy," and raised the price target to $25 from $20.
The company's drug for advanced prostate cancersignificantly delayed progression of the disease and extendedsurvival in a large, late stage study of patients who had notyet received chemotherapy, likely paving the way for an expandedapproval of the medicine.
The company said it would present preliminary findings froma mid-stage study of its drug to treat castration resistantprostate cancer at a medical meeting in San Francisco onThursday.
** OMEROS CORP, $11.95, +6.41 pct
The company said data from a mid-stage study of itscognitive disorder drug showed that the drug's tolerability wasnot affected when used in combination with antipsychoticmedicines. Omeros (Frankfurt: 3O8.F - news) said the drug could be developed as a singletherapy or be tested along with other antipsychotic medicines infurther studies on schizophrenia patients.
The drugmaker said it expects to report fourth-quarterrevenue of about $31.9-$32.4 million, beating market estimates,helped by strong growth of its anti-inflammatory drug Rayos andarthritis drug Duexis.
Analysts had expected fourth-quarter revenue of $27.4million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
** TUPPERWARE BRANDS CORP, $79.24, -5.41 pct
The kitchen storage container maker forecast aweaker-than-expected profit for 2014 after its fourth-quarterresults missed market estimates due to a 5 percent fall in salesin its established markets such as Germany, Canada and theUnited States.
The company reported fourth-quarter results above analysts'estimates, helped by higher-than-expected international sales ofits neurology and newborn care products. Natus also raised its2014 adjusted earnings forecast to the range of $1.14-$1.18 pershare from the $1.12-$1.16 it earlier expected.
The industrial automation company lifted the lower end ofits 2014 forecast after reporting a 23 percent jump infirst-quarter profit due to sales increases in Europe, AsiaPacific and the United States.
** TEVA PHARMACEUTICAL INDUSTRIES, $45.2, +2.49 pct
Teva's shares open higher after the company said U.S. regulators approved its three-times-a-week multiplesclerosis drug Copaxone. The world's largest generics drugmakerhas been banking on a three-times-a-week version of Copaxoneahead of possible competition from generic rivals of the drugthis year.
The U.S. refiner said its fourth-quarter profit rose, helpedby stronger results in its transportation and processing andchemicals businesses.
The company reported a higher quarterly profit as risingticket prices bolstered revenue. The New York-based carriercited "strong" revenue trends for the current period but addedflight cancellations this month in wake of unfavorable weatherin the U.S. Northeast would hurt first quarter results.
** CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY, $145.1, +2.28 pct
Canada's second largest railway reported a five-foldjump in fourth-quarter profit, as freight revenue rose 7percent.
The air ambulance service provider estimated fourth-quarterearnings below analysts' expectations and said it would incur$2.4 million in pretax charges during. The company also saidpatient transports in the quarter decreased compared with theprior year.
** HESS CORP, $77.59, +1.03 pct
The company reported a quarterly profit well below WallStreet expectations as oil and natural gas production lagged dueto instability in Libya and maintenance in the U.S. Gulf ofMexico.
The largest industrial gas supplier in the Americas raisedits dividend by 8 percent and set another $1.5 billion sharebuyback plan, after its quarterly profit rose due to strongsales and acquisitions.
The videogame publisher raised its full-year earningsforecast for the year, driven by strong cost control measures.It now sees non-GAAP income of $1.30 per share, compared withits previous forecast of $1.22.
At least two brokerages raised their price targets on thestock.
** MARATHON PETROLEUM CORP, $84.76, +1.91 pct
The third-largest stand-alone U.S. refining company posted a17 percent drop in quarterly profit on Wednesday due toshrinking crude discounts and rising maintenance costs. (Compiled by Natalie Grover in Bangalore; Editing by JoyjeetDas (Shenzhen: 002421.SZ - news) )
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