Higher Open As Jobless Claims Fall

First time applications for unemployment benefits fell to a five year low to lift the markets to a higher open with the Dow gaining 30 points to 14,960. Nasdaq rose 10 points to 3659.

On the upside

Morgan Stanley upgraded Groupon (Nasdaq: GRPN) from an Equal Weight rating to an Overweight rating.

Louisiana-Pacific (NYSE: LPX) will acquire Ainsworth Lumber in a deal valued at approximately $1.1 billion including the assumption of debt.

SKF Group will pay a premium of approximately $1.14 billion in cash to acquire Kaydon (NYSE: KDN).

On the downside

Conns (Nasdaq: CONN) reported higher second quarter earnings but the results fell short of analyst expectations.

Catalyst Pharmaceutical Partners (Nasdaq: CPRX) will sell 8.8 million common shares through a registered direct public offering at the discounted price of $1.72 per share.

GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE: GSK) reported disappointing results from a MAGE-A3 cancer immunotherapeutic Phase 3 study which contained Agenus' (Nasdaq: AGEN) QS-21 Stimulon adjuvant.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 7 to 5 on the NYSE and by more than 5 to 3 on Nasdaq. The broader S&P 500 rose 5 points to 1659.

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