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The Nasdaq Now: Facebook Dips Ahead of Another Lockup Expiration

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Tekmira Pharmaceuticals and ZaZa Energy were up on the day.

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MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL US stocks stayed all but flat in mid-Tuesday trading, as investors continued to await greater clarity on whether the government will be able to strike a budget deal in time to avert the fiscal cliff.

The Nasdaq Composite (INDEXNASDAQ:.IXIC) was up 0.07% to 2,906.33 points on average trading volume of 743.33 million as of 12:03 p.m. EST.

Tekmira Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:TKMR) was one of the greatest gainers in intraday trading, surging 17.53% to $6.02. The company earlier announced the settlement of its lawsuit against Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ALNY) (+5.89% to $17.07), with the latter agreeing to pay Tekmira $65 million within 10 days. Tekmira is also eligible to receive $10 million in near-term milestone payments in 2013.

After announcing record third-quarter results, ZaZa Energy (NASDAQ:ZAZA) leapt 24.09% to $1.70. The company posted net income of $133.8 million, or $1.02 per share, compared to a net loss of $2.6 million, or $0.03 per share, in the same period a year ago. Revenue came in at a robust $207.2 million, versus $4.4 million in the comparable year-ago timeframe.

Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) was also up 1.56% to $62.58. Nomura, who has a Buy rating on Qualcomm, says that the market is underestimating Qualcomm's licensing growth potential as 3G subscriber penetration continues to rise in emerging markets.

On the day of the launch of the third round of Federal Reserve quantitative easing (QE3), American Capital Agency (NASDAQ:AGNC) fell 4.40% to $29.09. Investors were concerned because stimulatory measures lower spreads, bond yields, and homeowners' borrowing costs, which in turn puts pressure on REITs' earnings and dividends.

Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM) dipped 2.04% to $8.63 as the market continues to await the introduction of its much-awaited BlackBerry 10.

Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) also eased 0.75% to $19.92. Tomorrow is yet another lockup expiration date, with some 777 million additional sales becoming eligible for sale.

Twitter: @sterlingwong
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No positions in stocks mentioned.
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