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Achillion, Emcore: Early Volume Plays

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Several stocks trading near $5 were poised to move on above-average volume during Wednesday's session.

Helicos BioSciences (HLCS) dropped by 26 cents, or 19%, to $1.11 in the premarket session after the company said it has priced a registered direct offering of 6.4 million units at a price of $1 per unit. Each unit consists of one share of common stock and a warrant to buy 0.65 of a share of common stock at an exercise price of $1.4385 per share. Helicos said it anticipates gross proceeds of $6.4 million before deducting underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses. The 50-day average daily volume for Helicos is 841,000 shares, according to the Nasdaq.

Achillion Pharmaceuticals (ACHN) surged by $1.13, or 52.6%, to $3.28 in the premarket session after the company offered positive preliminary Phase 1b proof of concept data with its ACH-1625 drug to treat hepatitis C. ACH-1625 is an inhibitor of HCV NS3 protease that was discovered and is being developed by Achillion. The 50-day average daily volume for Achillion is 46,000.

Emcore (EMKR) jumped by 11 cents, or 11.7%, to $1.05 in the premarket session after the company late Tuesday reported a fiscal fourth-quarter loss of 11 cents a share, a penny better than the consensus between two analysts' targets, according to Thomson Reuters. Revenue fell 33% from a year ago to $40.5 million, although that was up 5% sequentially and bested the consensus target of $39.8 million. Looking ahead to the fiscal first quarter, Emcore expects revenue in a range of $41 million to $43 million, compared to a single analyst estimate of $40.6 million. The 50-day average daily volume for Emcore is 585,000.

GigaMedia (GIGM) rose by 41 cents, or 10.8%, to $4.20 in the premarket session after the company said it has formed a strategic alliance with European online gambling site Mangas Gaming. The alliance will see GigaMedia sell 60% of its online gambling software business to Mangas, including Everest Poker, which is powered by GigaMedia's software. The 50-day average daily volume for GigaMedia is 680,000.

PC Mall (MALL) added 22 cents, or 3.9%, to $5.94 in the premarket session after the direct marketing company announced that SARCOM, a wholly-owned subsidiary, has acquired certain assets of Data Systems Worldwide. Data Systems Worldwide had unaudited revenues of approximately $6.4 million in the first nine months of 2009, the company said. The 50-day average daily volume for PC Mall is 43,000.

-- Written by Robert Holmes in New York.

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