Market Focus

Avanir Pharmaceuticals & Otsuka

Avanir Pharmaceuticals is being purchased by Japan’s Otsuka for about $3.5 billion. Avanir develops drugs to treat central nervous system disorders and Otsuka wants to expand its portfolio of neurological disease treatments. Shares spiked almost 13 percent to $16.92.

Eli Lilly

Shares of Eli Lilly spiked on news it entered an exclusive agreement to develop privately held Zosano Pharma’s experimental osteoporosis patch treatment. The deal could be worth more than $440 million. Lilly rose nearly three percent to $70.38.

BP & Royal Dutch Shell

BP moved higher on rumors of a takeover bid from rival Royal Dutch Shell. No specific deal numbers were suggested and neither company is commenting no the report, but investors bought up shares anyway. BP rose two percent to $40.72. Shares of Royal Dutch Shell also rose almost three percent to $69.35.


Mastercard is hiking its quarterly dividend to 16 cents a share. Also, it’s authorizing a nearly $4 billion stock buyback. The new share repurchase program will become effective after the completion of the current program. Shares were slightly higher to $87.69.

CBS & Dish

The showdown between CBS and Dish is heating up again. Two contract extensions kept CBS on the Dish Network over the Thanksgiving holiday, but now CBS has set a new deadline. The company says unless they reach a real, their programming, including the NFL and college football will go dark this Thursday at 7pm. Shares of Dish fell two percent to $75.27. CBS was also down, but just a fraction to $54.30.

Royal Caribbean & Bemis

Royal Caribbean will replace Bemis, the packaging products company in the S&P 500, which will be implemented after the close of trading on Thursday. Bemis’ market cap lags the guideline for an S&P 500 stock. Royal Caribbean popped six percent to $76.75. Bemis was actually higher too, up one percent to $40.59.

Bank of New York Mellon

Bank of New York Mellon is giving a board seat to a co-founder of the activist hedge fund Trian Fund Management. Trian has a stake in the bank of more than 2.5 percent and although the firm hasn’t made any public demands for changes at the bank, some reports say Trian has privately urged the bank to cut costs. The stock rose 70 cents to $40.28.


Shares of Taser popped after President Obama proposed spending $75 million to help police departments purchase body-word police cameras, which Taser makers. The action comes in the wake of civil unrest after the fatal police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri. Shares were more than 5.5 percent higher to $23.34.

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