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A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.
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A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

Check out which companies are making headlines before the bell:

Family DollarDollar General has gone hostile with its $80 dollar per share bid for Family Dollar, taking it directly to shareholders. Family Dollar has been proceeding with plans to be acquired by Dollar Tree.

eBay–Piper Jaffray analyst Eugene Munster downgraded the stock to "neutral" from "overweight," based on competitive pressures for the PayPal unit from Apple'snew Apple Pay service.

Apple–Pacific Crest downgraded Apple to "sector perform" from "outperform" following Tuesday's introduction of two new iPhones and the Apple Watch. Pacific Crest said it was impressed by the new products but that the potential financial impact is already built into Apple's stock price.

Twitter–UBS upgraded the microblogging site to "buy" from "neutral", based on an improved outlook for digital advertising.


Netflix–Canaccord initiated coverage on Netflix with a "buy" rating, saying it has altered consumer viewing patterns globally in a way that will continue for years to come.

Lands' End–The clothing retailer reported quarterly profit and revenue above both year-ago levels and the forecasts from the lone analyst who provided estimates. Lands' End was spun off from Sears back in April.

Krispy Kreme Doughnuts–The doughnut chain earned 13 cents per share, excluding certain items, for the second quarter, missing estimates by three cents. Revenue did come in above forecasts, but so far, investors are concentrating on the bottom line miss rather than rising sales.

Palo Alto Networks–Palo Alto matched estimates with fiscal fourth quarter profit of 11 cents per share, excluding certain items. Revenue was well above estimates for the maker of security software, as was its current quarter profit and revenue forecast.

Sirius XM–The satellite radio service raised its 2014 guidance for net subscriber additions to 1.45 million from the prior 1.25 million.

Royal Caribbean–Royal Caribbean raised its quarterly dividend to 30 cents per share from 25 cents. The cruise line operator will pay the increased dividend on October 2 to shareholders of record as of September 22.

Microsoft–The software giant may buy Minecraft maker Mojang for about $2.5 billion, according to Re/code. The Wall Street Journal had reported earlier that a deal could be struck as early as this week.

Allergan —The company is the target of new criticism from activist investor Bill Ackman, who has been spearheading an effort by Valeant Pharmaceuticals to buy Allergan. Ackman told the Allergan board in a letter that directors should "wake up" and at least listen to what Valeant has to offer.

ConAgra —The food maker won a court decision that voids most of a $180 million jury award against it for a 2010 fire at an Illinois flour mill that injured three workers.


By CNBC's Peter Schacknow

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