Check out which companies are making headlines before the bell on Thursday:
Hormel Foods — Hormel earned 46 cents per share for its second quarter, three cents below estimates, with revenues also short of consensus. The food producer was impacted by weakness in the Jennie-O Turkey segment, as well as lower profit margins and higher overhead costs.
Hewlett-Packard — HP reported fiscal second quarter profit of 87 cents per share, excluding certain items, six cents above estimates. Revenues were short of consensus forecasts, but HP raised its full year guidance above analyst projections. The computer maker is having some success increasing its sales of enterprise computing services.
Tesla Motors —Tesla has fully repaid a 2010 Energy Department Loan, wiring $451.8 million to the government.
LyondellBasell Industries — Lyondell has raised its quarterly dividend by 25 percent to 50 cents per share, and has also approved the repurchase of up to 10 percent of its stock over the next year. CEO Jim Gallogly cited an improved outlook for the maker of plastics and chemicals.
PetSmart —PetSmart reported first quarter profit of 98 cents per share, two cents above estimates, with revenues essentially in line with forecasts. The pet products retailer also raised its full year outlook and projected sales growth of three to four percent.
L Brands — The company earned 48 cents per share for the first quarter, two cents above estimates, with revenues in line. The retailer formerly known as Limited Brands also raised its full year forecast, helped by improved results in its Victoria's Secret and Bath & Body Works chains.
Lender Processing — The Wall Street Journal reports Fidelity National Financial and Thomas H. Lee Partners are near a deal to buy the mortgage servicing provider for about $33 per share in cash and stock, a total of about $2.9 billion.
General Motors — GM is pricing its Spark electric vehicle at $27,495, among the lowest for electric cars, with a $7,500 federal tax credit also available for purchasers. The Spark will go on sale next month in California and Oregon.
Merck — The drug giant has received the endorsement of an FDA panel for its experimental insomnia drug Suvorexant. Reviewers and Merck have been disagreeing about the dosage, with the panel repeating its view that the drug is just as effective and less dangerous at a lower dose than Merck had proposed.
Starwood Hotels — Bank of America/Merrill Lynch has upgraded the hotel operator's stock to "buy" from "neutral".
FactSet Research — Piper Jaffray has upgraded the research firm's shares to "overweight" from "neutral".
(Read More: See CNBC's Market Insider Blog)
—By CNBC's Peter Schacknow
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