Modestly higher open on M&A news

Merger and acquisition news lifted the markets to a modestly higher open with the Dow rising 26 points to 17,527. Nasdaq gained 14 points to 4,784.

On the upside

Arbor Pharmaceuticals will acquire Xenoport (Nasdaq: XNPT) for a premium of approximately $467 million in cash.

Luminex (Nasdaq: LMNX) increased its offer for Nanosphere (Nasdaq: NSPH) from $1.35 per share to $1.70 per share in cash.

Affiliates of Siris Capital Group offered a premium of approximately $643 million in cash to acquire Xura (Nasdaq: MESG).

On the downside

The former treasurer of one of Brazil's coalition parties was arrested in the ongoing graft investigation involving Petrobras (NYSE: PBR).

A German newspaper reported that German's Federal Motor Transport Authority found that Fiat Chrysler (NYSE: FCAU) illegally manipulated emissions controls.

Investors continued to lock in profits on Ocean Rig (Nasdaq: ORIG).

In the broad market, declining issues barely edged out decliners by a slim margin of nearly 10 to 9 on the NYSE while advancers outpaced decliners by more than 10 to 9 on Nasdaq. The broader S&P 500 held steady at 2,052. Bitcoin gained $3 to $442.
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