Market Minute: FarmVille Founder Steps Aside; Steinway Agrees to Buyout


The founder of FarmVille hangs up his pitchfork, and Steinway makes some M&A music. Those stocks and more are what's making business news Tuesday.

The Dow industrials (^DJI) rose 65 points Monday, while the S&P 500 (^GPSC) added 8 and the Nasdaq (^IXIC) gained 31 points.

mark pinus zynga founder don mattrick ceo microsoft xbox technology farmville facebook
GlobeNewswire/APZynga founding CEO Mark Pincus, left, is stepping down to be replaced by Don Mattrick, right, the head of Microsoft's Xbox business.

Shares of Zynga (ZNGA) rallied Monday on word the company was about to announce the hiring of new CEO. And that's just what the online game-maker did right after the close, bringing in the head of Microsoft's (MSFT) Xbox division, Don Mattrick, to run the embattled company, and replace the company's founder.

Onyx Pharmaceuticals (ONXX) is also likely to add to yesterday's huge gains, on reports that several major drug-makers are interested in a buyout, including Pfizer (PFE) and Novartis (NVS). Onyx rejected an $8.7 billion offer from Amgen (AMGN) over the weekend, calling the bid too low.

Famed piano maker Steinway (LVB) has agreed to be acquired by private-equity firm Kohlberg & Co. The move is designed to help the company expand into China, Brazil and other major markets overseas.

Auto sales are expected to show strong gains again in June. Ford (F) is likely to lead the pack again, while General Motors (GM) is seen posting a slight increase.

Shares of Achillion Pharmaceuticals (ACHN) are set to tumble after reporting adverse effects from drug interactions with its new hepatitis C treatment. That prompted the Food and Drug Administration to put a clinical trial on hold. Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY) and Gilead Sciences (GILD) are working on competing products.

A federal judge has temporarily blocked Cracker Barrel (CBRL) from selling branded foods at grocery stores. Kraft Foods (KRFT) sued, saying the move would infringe on its Cracker Barrel brand and confuse consumers.

Nielsen Holding (NLSN), known for its TV ratings, is being added to the S&P 500. That usually provides a stock boost, as mutual funds that track the index must buy it. Nielsen replaces Sprint (S), which is being acquired by Japan's SoftBank.

And Walt Disney (DIS) CEO Robert Iger will stay on for a year longer than planned. He'll remain in the corner suite for another three years. Iger had been expected to retire in 2015.

-Produced by Drew Trachtenberg.


Correction: A previous version of this article incorrectly referred to the Japanese financial institution SoftBank as being a Chinese bank. DailyFinance regrets the error.