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    The biggest U.S. weapons makers posted higher profits this week and raised their forecasts for 2014 earnings, sending shares higher despite cuts in military spending that have weakened revenues.

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    The world of fast-fashion seemingly never goes out of style. Shares in Associated British Foods (ASBFF) jumped almost 9% Wednesday after the company said its Primark fashion chain would open its first U.S. store in Boston in late 2015. That could give the retailer a new leg of growth on top of European expansion. But investors are already reliant on ABF's fashion chops in backing the U.K. sugar-to-fashion conglomerate.

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    Shares of Federal-Mogul Holdings Corp. (FDML)  declined -10.18% to $16.68 by mid-day today. The auto parts supplier reported first quarter net income of $40 million, or 27 cents a share, versus a loss of $34 million, or 34 cents, a year ago. The company is majority controlled by Carl Icahn. Must Read: Warren Buffett's 10 Favorite Growth Stocks.

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    Xoom Corp (XOOM) shares are climbing 21.2% to $23.88 in trading on Wednesday following the release of the company's first quarter 2014 results.The online international money transfer company reported a year over year quarterly revenue increase of 48% to $35.9 million.Revenue increased as the number of active customers rose 34% to 1.13 million over the same period in 2013.Gross profit for the quarter w...

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    * Analysts expect approval next year. * Shares rise as much as 7 pct. By Natalie Grover. Spectrum Pharmaceuticals Inc (SPPI) said it expects to seek U.S. marketing approval for its blood cancer drug in the third quarter, after the treatment was shown to be safe and effective in a key mid-stage trial. The company's shares rose up as much as 7 percent on Wednesday.

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    By Saumya Vaishampayan and Sue Chang, MarketWatch. SAN FRANCISCO-- Apple Inc. (AAPL) and Facebook Inc. (FB) were both weak as they prepared to release quarterly results later Wednesday, while Intuitive Surgical Inc. (ISRG) slumped as its earnings fell short of expectations. The iPhone and iPad maker is expected to report earnings of $10.19 a share when it announces second-quarter results after the bell.

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     Dow Chemical  rose Wednesday after the company reported a 75% increase in profit in its first-quarter earnings report thanks to higher plastics prices and higher margins. The largest U.S. chemical maker's net income rose to $964 million, or 79 cents a share, from $550 million, or 46 cents a share, in the same period one year earlier. The stock was up 1.2% to $49.53 at 11:45 a.m. on Wednesday.

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    Plug Power (PLUG) on Wednesday tripped a Nasdaq short-sale circuit breaker that imposes a restriction on prices at which securities may be sold short, and shares fell nearly 8%. About 30% of the fuel-cell supplier's shares are sold short, according to FactSet. With Wednesday's stumble, shares of Plug Power (PLUG) were down more than 15% so far this week.

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    Sanmina (SANM) shares are up 14.4% to $20.89 in trading on Wednesday following the release of the company's second quarter 2014 earnings results.The biotech company posted revenue of $1.48 billion, matching analysts consensus estimates and beating first quarter revenues of $1.45 billion.Non-GAAP EPS for the quarter was 44 cents, beating analysts estimates by 5 cents.Must Read: Warren Buffett's 10 Favo...

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    Amgen  shares are down -5.26% to $113.11 in trading on Wednesday following the release of the company's first quarter 2014 earnings report.The biotech company posted net income of $1.44 billion, or $1.87 per share, missing analysts consensus estimates by 7 cents.Year over year quarterly revenue was up 7% to $4.52 billion, missing analysts estimates of $4.76 billion.The company maintained full y...

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    Shares of CNOOC Ltd. (CEO)  are down -1.43% to $163.56 as the Beijing-based offshore crude oil and natural gas producer sells multibillion-dollar bonds in three portions, in part to repay loans related to $15.1 billion purchase of Canadian oil-sands operator Nexen Inc., sources say, the Wall Street Journal reports.

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     Ericsson was falling -6.1% to $12.21 Wednesday after missing analysts' estimates for earnings and revenue in the first quarter. For the first quarter the Swedish company posted earnings of 0.90 kronor a share, missing the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of 0.93 kronor a share by 0.03 kronor. Ericsson said sales declined in North America and Japan in the quarter.

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    From 2006 to 2009, Provident Asset Management raised $485 million from 7,700 investors who were drawn to its promises of annual returns as high as 18 percent on oil and gas assets. Brad Updike, a Mick energy-sector specialist, reviewed each of the 23 deals, known as private placements.

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    Air Products & Chemicals (APD) shares are down -0.48% to $118.60 following the release of the company's second quarter earnings results.The diversified chemical products company posted net income of $284 million, or $1.32 per diluted share in the quarter, missing analysts consensus EPS estimates by 3 cents.Year over year quarterly revenue rose 3.9% to $2.58 billion, beating analysts consensus estimat...

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    Shares of Arm Holdings Plc (ARMH)  are down -3.83% to $48.19. The semiconductor developer -- whose products power Apple's (AAPL)  iPhone and iPad -- reported slower growth in first quarter revenue from royalties on a decelerating market for high-end smartphones, Bloomberg reports. Royalty sales were up 3% to $144.5 million, compared with a 32% increase a year ago.

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    * Stake sale comes ahead of bigger than expected rights issue. * Fintech Advisory now Monte Paschi's biggest shareholder. * Monte Paschi increased size of rights issue to 5 bln euros.