Early movers: WMT, AMZN, M, TGT, DOW, UNH & more

Check out which companies are making headlines before the bell:

Wal-Mart, Macy's, Target —Retailers will be prominent among our stocks to watch today, after record weekend traffic but lower spending. The National Retail Federation says spending was down 2.9 percent over the four day weekend compared to a year ago.

Dow Chemical– The chemicals giant has announced its intention to sell parts of its commodities chemicals business, representing about $5 billion in annual sales. Dow said the revamp continues its move towards emphasizing higher margin businesses.

UnitedHealth – The health insurer is reaffirming its prior 2014 EPS guidance of $5.40 - $5.50 and its revenue forecast of $128 - $129 billion, both of which are below current Street consensus. UnitedHealth is holding its annual investor conference in New York today.

3M – Morgan Stanley downgraded the Dow component to "underweight" from "equalweight".

eBay – SunTrust Robinson Humphrey upgraded the stock to "buy" from "neutral", saying it is now at an attractive price point amid indications that it is having a strong holiday season.

Twitter – Goldman Sachs began coverage on Twitter with a "buy" rating, citing strong user growth and the opportunity to monetize that user base.

American Eagle Outfitters – Janney Capital upgraded the teen-oriented retailer to "buy" from "neutral", saying it's the best-positioned in fashion and value compared to competitors like Aeropostale and Abercrombie & Fitch.

Amazon.com - CEO Jeff Bezos told "60 Minutes" the online retailer is testing delivery drones that could deliver packages that weight up to five pounds. Bezos said use of those jets is probably four or five years away.

ArcelorMittal – The steel maker has bought ThyssenKrupp's U.S. steel finishing plant in Alabama for $1.55 billion dollars, in partnership with Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal.

LionsGate, Walt Disney – LionsGate's "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" and Disney's "Frozen" broke box office records over the holiday weekend. Both beat the former five-day record gross of $82.4 million set by "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" in 2001.

Comcast– The cable operator is testing technology that puts new commercials into old episodes of TV shows that are available on demand, in an effort to cash in on the increasing use of "binge viewing". Comcast is the parent of NBCUniversal, which owns CNBC.

Trulia – Goldman Sachs downgraded the real estate web site operator's shares to "neutral" from "buy", pointing to softer housing demand.

Monster Beverage– JPMorgan Chase upgraded the beverage maker's stock to "overweight" from "neutral".

By CNBC's Peter Schacknow

Questions? Comments? Email us at marketinsider@cnbc.com

  • Patti Domm

    Patti Domm is CNBC Executive Editor, News, responsible for news coverage of the markets and economy.

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