Market Focus

Barnes & Noble

A new chapter for Barnes & Noble, it’s spinning off its Nook digital book business. The bookseller is hoping to up shareholder value by splitting its company in two. One division will include its nook and college textbooks and the other unit will include the rest of its retail business. It expects to complete the separation by March 2015. The company also reported a smaller quarterly loss. Shares popped more than five percent to $21.65.

Monsanto

Monsanto saw its earnings dip in the company’s third quarter, but the results still beat and it announced a big share buyback plan, which sent the stock higher. It blamed lower sales of biotech seeds for the decrease, but it expects a brighter future. The seed and pesticide maker raised its 2014 outlook and announced a new, two-year $10 billion share repurchase program, the company’s biggest ever. The stock rose five percent to $126.73.

Apollo Education Group

Apollo Education Group reported a better than expected quarterly profit even as new enrollments declines, but by the smallest amount in a year. The for-profit education provider has been struggling with declining student registrations at its schools like the University of Phoenix. Shares were up more six percent to $31.08.

Medical Action & Owens & Minor

Medical Action the maker of disposable medical and surgical products surged on news it’s being acquired by health care logistics company Owens & Minor for more than $200 million. The purchase gives Owens better access to cost-effective specific equipment. Shares of Medical Action nearly doubled, up 93 percent to $13.68. Shares of Owens & Minor rose 1.5% to $35.38.

Lockheed Martin

Lockheed Martin clinched a big contract from the U.S. air force to work on two missile-warning satellites. The $1.9 billion deal is a project that’s part of the space-based infrared system. The contract runs through the year 2022. Despite that shares of Lockheed were off a bit to $162.45.

Hanesbrands

Shares of Hanesbrands got a lift on news the underwear maker is buying its former sister company DBApparel. The deal, which values France’s DBApparel at more than $500 million let’s Hanesbrands expand in Europe.

Bed Bath & Beyond

And after the market close Bed Bath & Beyond shares fell sharply after the retailer reported quarterly earnings that missed analyst estimates. Sales also came in below expectations as well as its earnings guidance for the quarter. The stock fell as much at seven percent in after hours trading. The stock was up a fraction to $61.11 in the regular session.

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