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14-03-2012 10:39:00

US STOCK FUTURES: HOT STOCKS TO WATCH

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Among the companies with shares expected to actively trade in Wednesday's session are Pacific Sunwear of California Inc. (PSUN), Guidewire Software Inc. (GWRE) and Francesca's Holdings Corp. (FRAN).

PacSun reported a wider fiscal fourth-quarter loss due to weaker-than-expected sales and store-closing costs. It also projected a downbeat first-quarter loss. Shares dropped 17% to $2.07 after hours.

Guidewire's fiscal second-quarter earnings fell 32% as the insurance-software maker reported a higher tax provision and higher expenses, though revenue jumped. Shares jumped 10% to $28.25 after hours as results beat analyst estimates.

Francesca's fiscal fourth-quarter earnings surged a better-than-expected 93%, even after the women's retailer boosted guidance in January, as holiday sales and margins improved. Shares jumped 12% to $30 after hours.

SciClone Pharmaceuticals Inc.'s (SCLN) fourth-quarter profit soared as the pharmaceutical company's revenue and margins strengthened. Shares climbed 13% to $5.90 after hours.

Citigroup Inc. (C) failed one part of a toughened-up stress test, leading the Federal Reserve to object to its capital-return plans. The bank said in a statement it would submit a revised capital plan to the Fed this year, as required. Shares fell 3.2% to $35.28 after hours.

Medifast Inc.'s (MED) fourth-quarter earnings fell 66% as expenses related to the company's expansion of its weight control centers weighed on bottom-line results, though revenue improved. Shares slipped 7.2% to $15.50 after-hours.

Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. (CLF) more than doubled its quarterly dividend, part of a new strategy the mining company said will shift focus away from big deals while returning more value to stockholders. Shares rose 3.4% to $67.11 after hours.

Biopharmaceutical company Endocyte Inc. (ECYT) said it will submit conditional marketing authorization applications for its ovarian cancer treatment in Europe in the third quarter after meeting with European health authorities. Shares rose 3.5% to $3.85 in after-hours trading.

Benihana Inc. (BNHN) said its board is exploring strategic alternatives, including a possible sale of the company. Shares rose 3.4% to $12.25 after hours.

American Capital Mortgage Investment Corp. (MTGE) said it plans to double its shares outstanding with an offering of 10 million shares. The trust, which started last year, is externally managed and advised by an affiliate of American Capital Ltd. (ACAS), the trust's largest shareholder. Shares of the trust fell 2.1% to $21.99 after hours.

Cheniere Energy Inc. (LNG) plans to sell 17 million shares of its stock for general corporate purposes, including repaying debt. Shares were down 3.8% at $15.40 after hours.

Noranda Aluminum Holding Corp. (NOR) said 10 million of its shares will be offered by funds affiliated with the company's largest shareholder. Shares fell 4.2% to $10.80 after hours.

Payment-services provider FleetCor Technologies Inc. (FLT) said entities associated with Summit Partners and Bain Capital Partners agreed to sell 6 million shares of its common stock. The company's stock was down 2.9% after hours at $36.59.

Watchlist

Chip maker Analog Devices Inc. (ADI) will move its listing to the Nasdaq Global Select Market from the New York Stock Exchange effective April 2, the latest technology company to make the switch.

A partnership led by Chesapeake Energy Corp. (CHK)--along with M3 Midstream LLC and EV Energy Partners LP (EVEP)--plans to spend about $900 million on a system to collect and move natural gas from eastern Ohio, deepening Chesapeake's investment in the state's Utica shale region.

Moody's Investors Service raised its outlook on First Industrial Realty Trust Inc. (FR) to positive from stable, noting the real estate investment trust's progress in leasing up its portfolio, reducing leverage and improving liquidity.

Genesee & Wyoming Inc.'s (GWR) February traffic slid 0.6% in February from a year earlier as the railroad reporter continued to see sluggish coal demand.

Health Net Inc.'s (HNT) said it will add $323.7 million to its share-repurchase program, as the managed care-provider looks to boost returns to shareholders.

Level 3 Communications Inc. (LVLT) entered into an agreement with Southeastern Asset Management to exchange about $100 million of its senior debt for common stock.

Nstar (NST) and Northeast Utilities (NU) said they reached a comprehensive merger-related agreement with Connecticut's attorney general and the state's office of consumer counsel in order to allow their merger to proceed.

Penson Worldwide Inc. said (PNSN) Chief Financial Officer Kevin McAleer will retire at month's end, and the brokerage and clearing firm named TD Ameritrade Holding Corp. (AMTD) executive Michael Chochon as his successor.

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services removed its investment-grade rating on Ralcorp Holdings Inc. (RAH) from a CreditWatch that began in May of last year, reducing for now the likelihood of any potential downgrade into junk territory.

U.S. regulators have asked Roche Holding AG (ROG.VX, RHHBY) for additional information about its proposed takeover of Illumina Inc. (ILMN), the drug maker said Tuesday.

-Edited by Corrie Driebusch, Nathalie Tadena and Drew FitzGerald; write to andrew.fitzgerald@dowjones.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

March 14, 2012 06:39 ET (10:39 GMT)

Copyright (c) 2012 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

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