NEW YORK ( TheStreet) - Apple ( AAPL - Get Report) escalated its legal battle against Samsung by asking a California court to issue an injunction blocking sales of the Galaxy Nexus smartphone, according to reports.

In the suit, filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in San Jose, Apple accuses Samsung of violating four Apple patents with its new phone, according to a Dow Jones report published over the weekend.

Apple argues that the new Samsung phone is the strongest competitor yet to its iPhone and poses a robust threat to its market share, Dow Jones said.

Apple shares were gaining 1.1% to $498.99 in premarket trading Monday.

U.S. conglomerate General Electric ( GE - Get Report) said it will hire 5,000 U.S. military veterans over the next five years and invest $580 million into growing its U.S. aviation operations in 2012.

The announcement comes ahead of a four-day meeting in Washington beginning Monday to discuss ways to jump-start the U.S. economy.

GE shares were up 0.9% to $19.05.

Internet search giant Google ( GOOG - Get Report) should be winning approval from European regulators and U.S. antitrust authorities for its planned $12.5 billion purchase of Motorola Mobility ( MMI - Get Report), Reuters reported.

Google shares were rising 0.6% to $609.78.

Vodafone ( VOD), the world's largest mobile phone company, confirmed Monday it is considering making an offer for Britain's Cable & Wireless Worldwide.

Vodafone said Monday it was "in the very early stages of evaluating the merits of a potential offer for CWW."

If an offer was made, Vodafone said it likely would be in cash. Reports suggest Cable & Wireless might be sold for 700 million pounds ($1.1 billion) to 900 million pounds.

Vodafone shares were up 0.4% to $27.50.

Diebold ( DBD - Get Report) is expected by analysts to post fourth-quarter earnings of 84 cents a share.

Diebold, the maker of ATMS and bank vaults, will issue results before the markets open Monday. Shares were unchanged at $34.75.

Health Management Associates ( HMA) is seen by analysts earning 20 cents a share in the fourth quarter on revenue of $1.58 billion.

Drug development company Charles River ( CRL - Get Report) is expected on Monday to post earnings of 55 cents a share in the fourth quarter, according to analysts.

Medical diagnostic control products supplier SeraCare Life Sciences ( SRLS) announced that it will be acquired by an affiliate of private-equity firm Linden Capital Partners for $80.8 million, which will take the company private.

The agreement of $4 a share represents a premium of about 12% to SeraCare's Friday stock price close on the Nasdaq. The deal is expected to be completed in the second quarter.

Industrial conglomerate United Technologies ( UTX - Get Report) is exploring the sale of its flow and compressor businesses, which could result in a proceeds of $3.5 billion, according to Reuters.

-- Written by Joseph Woelfel and Andrea Tse

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