Target and Wal-Mart Lure Shoppers and 4 Stocks Hit the 52-Week High List

Eli Lilly And Company (NYSE:LLY): Some 16 emerging markets, including Brazil, China and Russia, will make up one third of worldwide drug expenditures within the next four years, and increasing spending in emerging pharmaceutical markets will drive the industry’s global sales growth by 2016, according to Bloomberg, citing a report by the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics. Shares closed up 0.98 percent on the day at $43.26, and have traded in a 52-week range of $33.75 to $43.31.

Peapack-Gladstone Financial Corporation (NASDAQ:PGC) reported that the Nominating Committee of the Board of Directors and Mr. Frank Kissel, Chairman and Chief Executive, have decided to separate the position of Chairman from the position of Chief Executive. In keeping with that change, Mr. Kissel will continue as Chairman but relinquish the position of CEO when the Board has elected a new one. Shares closed up 0.12 percent on the day at $16.14, having traded in a 52-week range of $9.60 to $16.15.

Presidential Life Corporation (NASDAQ:PLFE) has reached a definitive agreement to be purchased by an Athene subsidiary at $14.00 per share in cash, which represents an total purchase price of about $415 million. The share acquisition price yields a windfall of approximately 38 percent over the $10.14 per share closing price of Presidential Life common stock on July 12th, which was the last trading day prior to Friday’s announcement, and also a premium of 40 percent over the average closing price for the five trading day period that ended on that date. The transaction should close later this year and is subject to the usual closing conditions and approvals. Shares closed up 36.69 percent on the day at $13.86, and have traded in a 52-week range of $7.27 to $12.21.

Target Corp. (NYSE:TGT) and Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) appear to be using groceries to lure shoppers into their stores, with the promise of great savings, according to the Wall Street Journal. This could account for the sizable drop in domestic sales in traditional supermarkets, who have seen their shares of groceries fall to 51 percent in 2011, contrasted with 66 percent in 2000, says UBS. Target shares closed up 3.46 percent on day at $61.95, and have traded in a 52-week range of $45.28 to $60.23.

Merck & Company (NYSE:MRK) Shares closed up 1.31 percent on the day at $43.47, and have traded in a 52-week range of $29.47 to $43.18.

Want news like this in real-time so you can get an edge? Click here for Wall St. Cheat Sheet Pro.