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Early movers: MCD, VIAB, PYPL, WFC, GM, KBR, ISLE & more

Stocks to Watch: September 19, 2016

Check out which companies are making headlines before the bell:

McDonald's — The Financial Times reported the fast-food giant may be ordered to pay $500 million in back taxes to Luxembourg. McDonald's is being investigated by Brussels over a tax ruling which allowed the firm to pay no taxes in the U.S. or in Luxembourg.

Viacom — Analysts at Stifel downgraded the media giant's stock to "hold" from "buy" and slashed their price target to $38 from $49, citing reports that Viacom's board has decided to halt plans to sell its minority stake in Paramount Pictures. "We had been holding the potential of a sale as one of the key anchors of our Buy rating as such a sale would have made the core Media assets despite the challenges appear under-valued," Stifel analysts said.

PayPal — The online payment firm's stock was downgraded to "hold" from "buy" by Canaccord Genuity analysts. "We are optimistic regarding [total payment volume] growth in the near term, but we believe the factors driving this (One Touch, Venmo) are well understood and largely reflected in estimates," they said. The analysts also lowered their price target on PayPal shares to $40 from $45.

Wells Fargo — The banking giant's stock was upgraded to "outperform" from "neutral" by analysts at Baird, citing an "attractive" risk/reward scenario. "Clearly, recent headlines surrounding retail banking sales practices at WFC are a black eye for a company with a great long-term fundamental track record. … However, we think pessimism in the stock is likely to peak over coming days, and find the market's extraction of ~$25B in WFC market value related to a $2.6M revenue loss to be excessive," Baird said.

General Motors — Shares of GM rose more than 2 percent in premarket trading before the bell after analysts at Morgan Stanley upgraded the auto firm's stock to "overweight" from "equal-weight" and raised their price target to $37 from $29. "We believe GM´s businesses can remain relevant and profitable for longer than the market thinks. A move to Auto 2.0 requires a lengthy transition period (Auto 1.5) during which time GM can generate cash, return cash and nurture new businesses with potentially positive terminal values," Morgan Stanley analysts said in a note to clients.

Isle of Capri Casinos — The hotel and casino operator's stock surged more than 30 percent in the premarket after announcing it's being bought out by Eldorado Resorts for $23 per share, or $1.7 billion, in a cash-and-stock deal. Eldorado's shares, meanwhile, advanced more than 8.5 percent.

BWX Technologies — The firm announced an accelerated share repurchase program worth $200 million which will be funded through cash on hand and credit. BWX Technologies shares remained unchanged in the premarket.

KBR — The company announced the acquisition of Honeywell Technology Solutions, a Honeywell subsidiary, as KBR expands its Global Services offerings "into higher end technical services that offer increased margins and a lower risk profile." The deal is expected to be accretive to KBR's profits in 2017.

ITT Educational — The for-profit college company filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing. ITT Educational's shares were halted in the premarket.