Ballard, QLT: Early Volume Plays

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Several small-cap stocks were poised to move on above-average volume during Tuesday's session

Ballard Power Systems ( BLDP) dropped by 21 cents, or 8.3%, to $2.32 in the premarket session after the company on late Monday posted a third-quarter net loss of $12 million, or 14 cents a share, widening from the year-ago loss and worse than the Thomson Reuters average estimate for a loss of 12 cents a share. Revenue fell by 26.8% from a year ago to $9 million, below the consensus of $14.6 million. The three-month average daily volume for Ballard is 89,000, according to Yahoo! Finance.

Helicos BioSciences ( HLCS) jumped by 21 cents, or 10%, to $2.32 in the premarket session after the company provided a business update, saying it expects approximately $5 million in cash receipts from previously announced System orders and associated reagent purchases. Cash inflows from these orders are expected to occur during the fourth quarter of 2009 and the first quarter of 2010, Helicos said. The three-month average daily volume for Helicos is 2.6 million, according to Yahoo! Finance.

Appliance Recycling Centers of America ( ARCI) surged by 33 cents, or 16.8%, to $2.30 in the premarket session after the company disclosed that it entered into an appliance sales and recycling agreement with General Electric ( GE) acting through its GE Consumer & Industrial business.. The three-month average daily volume for Appliance Recycling is 32,000, according to Yahoo! Finance.

QLT Inc. ( QLTI) rose by 11 cents, or 3.1%, to $3.65 in the premarket session after the company reported third-quarter adjusted earnings of 4 cents a share, matching the single analyst estimate, according to Thomson Reuters. QLT also said it will repurchase up to 5% of its outstanding common shares over the next 12 months. The three-month average daily volume for QLT is 561,000, according to Yahoo! Finance.

Metabasis Therapeutics ( MBRX) plummeted by 39 cents, or 42.9%, to 52 cents in the premarket session after Ligand Pharmaceuticals ( LGND) will acquire all of the outstanding shares of Metabasis. Stockholders will receive a cash payment at the closing of the transaction of approximately $3.2 million, less Metabasis' estimated net liabilities at closing and an amount to be deposited in the stockholders' representative's fund, which Metabasis currently estimates the closing payment to be approximately $1.8 million in cash. The three-month average daily volume for Metabasis is 408,000, according to Yahoo! Finance.

LJ International ( JADE) jumped by 18 cents, or 4.9%, to $3.88 in the premarket session in the absence of any company-specific news. Investors posting on Internet message boards attributed the move higher to accumulation. On Monday, the stock rose more than 3% on above-average volume. The three-month average daily volume for LJ International is 440,000, according to Yahoo! Finance.

-- Written by Robert Holmes in New York.

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