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MARKET PULSE-Apple, Microsoft, Facebook, Baidu, MGIC Investment

Oct 1 (Reuters) - Some U.S. stocks to watch on Monday:

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FUTURES BEGIN QUARTER HIGHER BEFORE FACTORY DATA

U.S. stock index futures rose on Monday at the start of a new quarter before data that could show manufacturing's contraction was slowing.

S&P 500 futures rose 5.7 points, the Dow Jones industrial average futures added 61 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures gained 15.5 points.

** APPLE INC , Friday close $667.10, up 0.44 pct premarket

Chief Executive Tim Cook apologized Friday to customers frustrated with glaring errors in its new Maps service and, in an unusual move for the consumer giant, directed them to rival services such as Google Inc's Maps instead.

** MICROSOFT CORP , Friday close $29.76, down 0.20 pct premarket

RBC Capital Markets downgraded its rating on the company, saying consumer upgrades to Windows 8 will not be enough to offset slowing growth at its enterprise business.

"The Windows consumer business faces multiple headwinds as consumers have multiple devices to choose from including tablets and smart phones as extra devices per household," the brokerage said. RBC and Jefferies & Co both reduced their price targets on Microsoft's stock.

** GOOGLE INC , Friday close $754.50

** FACEBOOK INC , Friday close $21.66, up 1.29 pct premarket

Google's shares, which have gained 65 percent since July 2010, could rise even further, business weekly Barron's said on Sunday.

It also said Google's shares look inexpensive compared to their historic trading multiple and the multiples of Facebook and Chinese search engine Baidu Inc .

** BAIDU INC , Friday close $116.89, down 1.61 pct premarket

Jefferies & Co cut its rating on the Chinese search engine company's stock to "hold" from "buy" citing rival Qihoo 360 Technology Co's increasing share in the search space.

The brokerage said it expects Baidu's fourth-quarter revenue and profit below Street estimates as the company's cost to drive traffic to its website increases.

** 3M , Friday close $92.42

** CERADYNE INC , Friday close $24.43, up 42.78 pct premarket

3M said it will acquire the ceramic component maker for about $847 million. The offer of $35 per share represents a premium of about 43 percent to Ceradyne's Friday closing.

** MGIC INVESTMENT CORP , Friday close $1.53, up 7.84 pct premarket

The company said mortgage financier Freddie Mac has reduced the capital the mortgage insurer will need to add to its main unit, MGIC, in order to continue writing insurance throughout the United States.

** FIFTH THIRD BANCORP , Friday close $15.50, down 3.22 pct premarket

KBW downgraded the company's stock to "market perform" from "outperform".

** ARIAD PHARMACEUTICALS INC , Friday close $24.21, up 2.35 pct premarket

A small early-stage trial of the company's experimental pill AP26113 showed it shrank tumors in eight out of 11 lung cancer patients with a genetic mutation in a gene known as ALK.

** DENDREON CORP , Friday close $4.81 ** AETNA INC , Friday close $39.60

Health insurer Aetna said on Friday it will pay for a greater number of patients to receive Provenge, a prostate cancer drug made by Dendreon.

** H&R BLOCK INC , Friday close $17.33 ** SEARS HOLDINGS CORP , Friday close $55.49

U.S. tax preparer H&R Block said it will no longer operate in any Sears Holding locations.

** BOSTON SCIENTIFIC CORP , Friday close $5.74

U.S. health regulators approved the company's first-of-its-kind heart defibrillator that does not require leads to be inserted into the heart.

** STEELCASE INC , Friday close $9.85

The company's shares could rise 15 percent or more in the next year, business weekly Barron's said on Sunday, as the office furniture maker benefits from an expected gain in commercial construction.

** APOLLO GLOBAL MANAGEMENT LLC , Friday close $14.66

Aviva Plc has received offers from Apollo Global Management, Harbinger Capital Partners and Guggenheim Partners LLC for its life insurance division, Bloomberg News reported on Saturday, citing people with knowledge of the matter. {ID:nL1E8KT1W1]

** DOLLAR TREE INC , Friday close $48.29

The company said in a filing that it sold off its ownership interest in discount retailer Ollie's Holdings and that sale will boost its third-quarter profitability by 16 cents to 17 cents a share.

** JAKKS PACIFIC INC , Friday close $14.57, down 9.47 pct premarket

The toy-maker cut its full-year 2012 outlook due to low domestic sales and higher costs.

** BRIDGEPOINT EDUCATION INC , Friday close $10.15

The for-profit education company said its Ashford University will withdraw its appeal against the decision of Western Association of Schools and Colleges to deny it accreditation.

** GROUPON INC , Friday close $4.76

A U.S. judge on Friday rejected a proposed $8.5 million class action settlement with the company intended to resolve allegations that the expiration dates on its coupons violated consumer protection laws.

** ORACLE CORP , Friday close $31.46

Phone maker Nokia Oyj is expected to announce a deal that will give customers of technology company Oracle access to Nokia's mapping services, the Wall Street Journal reported.

** TRW Automotive Holdings Corp , Friday close $43.71

The automotive parts supplier said it will buy back shares worth up to $1 billion.

** GTX INC , Friday close $4.58

The company said it sold the rights of its breast cancer drug Fareston to ProStrakan Group Plc for $21.7 million in cash.

** CAL-MAINE FOODS INC , Friday close $44.94

The egg supplier reported improved quarterly results, helped by higher selling prices that mitigated the impact from increased feed costs.

** INTEGRYS ENERGY GROUP , Friday close $52.20

The company said it has agreed to buy Fox Energy Co LLC for $440 million. The purchase includes $390 million for the Fox Energy Center, a 593-megawatt combined cycle generating facility, and $50 million for the early termination of the existing tolling agreement, Integrys said in a statement.

(Complied by Aditi Shrivastava in Bangalore)

(aditi.shrivastava@thomsonreuters.com, within U.S. +1 646 223 8780, outside U.S. +91 80 4135 5783, Reuters messaging: aditi.shrivastava.reuters.com@reuters.net)

Keywords: MARKETS USA STOCKS/PULSE