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Early movers: MCD, BCS, TSLA, CMG & more

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S.
Michael Nagle | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S.

Check out which companies are making headlines before the bell:

Lennar — The home builder reported quarterly profit of 91 cents per share, beating consensus estimates by 13 cents, while revenue was also well above forecasts. Lennar saw a 12 percent jump in new home order volume, with a 17 percent increase in dollar volume.

McDonald's — The stock was upgraded to "outperform" from "market perform" at Cowen, which points to benefits from the restaurant chain's digital efforts as well as more effective value-based promotions.

Nvidia — The graphics chipmaker's stock was upgraded to "sector weight" from "underweight" at Pacific Crest, which said that demand from the cryptocurrency market has depleted inventory and reduced concern surrounding gaming segment growth.

Parexel — The drug research firm agreed to be acquired by Pamplona Capital Management for $88.10 per share in cash, or $5 billion including assumed debt. That follows pressure by activist investors, including Starboard Capital, to consider a sale.

Barclays — The bank and four former executives face criminal charges over undisclosed payments to Qatar investors during emergency capital raising in 2008. The bank said it is currently examining the charges.

Novartis — The drug maker said its experimental macular degeneration drug was equally effective as Regeneron's rival drug Eylea and with less frequent dosing.

Nestle — The food maker bought a minority stake in U.S.-based Freshly, which makes direct-to-consumer prepared meals. Nestle did not specify the amount of its investment.

Tesla — Tesla is close to an agreement that would allow it to build its electric cars in China, according to a Bloomberg report. Separately, the automaker declined comment on a new report from the National Transportation Safety Board report, which said a man killed in a crash last year while using Tesla's Autopilot software ignored repeated warnings not to keep his hands off the wheel for extended periods of time.

Goodyear Tire — Goodyear was upgraded to "buy" from "hold" at Jefferies, which notes the tire maker's strong cash returns as well as improving volume.

Teladoc — Teladoc will buy privately held Best Doctors for $440 million in cash and stock. Teladoc is a provider of virtual health solutions while Best Doctors is a medical consultation company.

Alexion Pharmaceuticals — Alexion CEO Ludwig Hantson bought 10,000 shares of the drug maker, according to an SEC filing.

Chipotle Mexican Grill — The restaurant chain said marketing and promotional costs will increase by 20 to 30 basis points for the current quarter from the prior quarter, up to as much as 3.7 percent of sales.