Check out which companies are making headlines before the bell:
General Mills – The food maker earned an adjusted 73 cents per share for its latest quarter, two cents a share above estimates. The company beat on the top line as well, benefiting from fewer promotions and expense controls. General Mills also raised its quarterly dividend to 49 cents per share from 48 cents.
Halliburton – The oilfield services company is in late-stage talks to buy Summit ESP, according to a Reuters report. Summit ESP is an oilfield equipment supplier backed by Oklahoma billionaire George Kaiser.
KB Home — The home builder reported quarterly profit of 33 cents per share, seven cents a share above estimates. Revenue also beat forecasts, with the company posting double-digit increases in net order value, backlog, and deliveries.
United Parcel Service – UPS is freezing is pension plan for 70,000 non-union employees, though the change will not take effect until January of 2023. The affected workers will then be offered the option of a 401(k) plan.
Western Digital – Western Digital is being sued by partner Toshiba for interfering in Toshiba’s planned sale of its semiconductor unit. The hard disk drive maker has maintained that Toshiba – whose Japan chip plant is jointly run by the two companies – cannot sell the unit without its approval.
Spectranetics – The U.S.-based company is being bought by Dutch health-care provider Philips for nearly $2.2 billion. Spectranetics is a medical device maker specializing in heart disease treatment.
Dow Chemical, DuPont – The two have received approval from Canadian officials for their planned merger, after the two companies agreed on various asset sales following the deal. Dow and DuPont have already received approval from the U.S. and the European Union. Separately, Dow investor Glenview Capital is pushing for changes in a plan to break the eventual combination into three separate companies, with its ideas detailed in a letter to its investors.
Qualcomm – The chipmaker has unveiled a new fingerprint sensor which it said brings a new layer of security and can be used underwater and from behind a thin pane of glass.
Dollar Tree – The discount retailer was upgraded to “buy” from “hold” at Loop Capital, which said it was confident in the retailer’s management and its ability to enhance shareholder value.
Altaba – Altaba was rated “overweight” in new coverage at JPMorgan, setting a price target of $65 per share for the Yahoo successor company. The rating is based on expectations for Altaba’s primary assets, which are its stakes in Alibaba and Yahoo Japan.
Alibaba – The China-based e-commerce giant increased its stake in Southeast Asian e-commerce platform Lazada to 83 percent from the prior 51 percent, an investment that will cost it roughly $1 billion.
Square – Mizuho began coverage on the mobile payment company with a “buy” rating, saying Square is set to gain share from traditional payment processors through a growing bundle of services.
Visa– Mizuho also rated the credit card issuer a “buy” in new coverage, noting increased digital acceptance and expansion into new markets, among other factors.
Aetna – The health insurer was rated “buy” in new coverage at Citi, which also put the stock on its Focus List. Citi likes Aetna’s diversification and its strong position in commercial and government business.
Expedia – Citi upgraded the travel website operator’s stock to “buy” from “neutral,” on expectations of a mid-year acceleration in growth, and expectations that Expedia will be able to sustain that higher pace.
Source: Investment Cnbc
Early movers: GIS, UPS, QCOM, AET, BABA, KBH, V & more