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The Markets Now: Mergers Abound; Berkshire Hathaway Acquires Heinz

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Angie's List surged after posting positive fourth-quarter results.

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Stocks moved down after the release of several mixed fourth-quarter reports.

In economic news, jobless claims decreased by 27,000 last week, a significant fall from the previous week. The four-week moving average, a less volatile measure, shows average claims are still close to a five-year low.

The Dow (INDEXDJX:.DJI) is down 0.06% at 13972.56. The Nasdaq (INDEXNASDAQ:IXIC) declined 0.04% to 3195.59. The S&P 500 (INDEXSP:.INX) moved down 0.05% to 1519.60.

Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A) moved up 0.84% after it announced it will acquire H.J. Heinz Co. (NYSE:HNZ) in a $23 billion deal. H.J. Heinz Co. stock surged 19.92% to $72.54.

US Airways (NYSE:LCC) and American Airlines (NYSE:AAR) have agreed to merge to better compete against United Airlines (NYSE:UAL) and Delta Airlines (NYSE:DAL). US Airways shares fell 6.07% to $13.76.

General Motors (NYSE:GM) reported fourth-quarter profit of $898 million, nearly doubling from $468 million in 2011. Its stock fell 1.67% to $28.21.

Anheuser-Busch InBev (NYSE:BUD) changed the terms of a takeover of Grupo Modelo (PINK:GPMCF) after the US government charged the deal would hurt competition. The stock moved up 5.21% to $92.88.

Pepsico (NYSE:PEP) sales rose 17% in the fourth quarter and the company forecast a 7% increase in 2013 earnings, exceeding analyst predictions. Shares rose 1.75% to $72.75.

Molson Coors Brewing Company (NYSE:TAP) edged down 0.65% to $44.32 after it reported a decline in fourth-quarter net income. The beer company brought in $60 million or $0.33 per share from $173 million or $0.95 per share last year.

Angie's List (NASDAQ:ANGI) surged 24.08% to $16.90 after it reported a fourth-quarter profit of $2.4 million after reporting a loss of $5.9 million a year ago.

CenturyLink (NYSE:CTL) reported a revenue decline of 1.5% in the fourth quarter compared to a 3.2% decline last year and earnings per share of $0.67 compared to $0.55 last year. Shares plunged 20.17% to $33.28.

TripAdvisor's (NASDAQ:TRIP) stock fell 7.23% to $43.50 after it was downgraded by Morgan Stanley from "overweight" to "equal weight." The company posted fourth-quarter revenue of $169.4 million, beating the consensus estimate of $166.64 million.

Weight Watchers International (NYSE:WTW) reported that it expects mid to high-teen declines in attendance for the first quarter. It expects full year earnings of $3.50 to $4.00 per share for the full year. Analysts were expecting $4.75 per share. Shares plunged 15.78% to $45.57.

Dr Pepper Snapple Group (NYSE:DPS) reported fourth-quarter earnings of $0.81 per share yesterday, which was up from $0.77 a year ago. The beverage company plans to spend $30 million in an effort to sell low-calorie versions of popular brands like A&W and Sunkist. Its stock rose 0.52% to $42.91.

Thomson Reuters (NYSE:TRI) announced plans to cut 2,500 jobs in its core Financial and Risk division by the end of the year. The news company earned $0.60 per share from $0.54 per share. Its shares stayed relatively flat at $29.98, up 0.07%.

Polycom Inc. (NASDAQ:PLCM) disclosed that its product and services chief Sudhakar Ramakrishna is leaving the company. The stock moved down 1.14% to $10.01.
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