Sanofi to Acquire U.S. Biopharmaceutical Company Kadmon
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French pharmaceutical major Sanofi SA said Wednesday that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire U.S.-based biopharmaceutical company Kadmon Holdings Inc. Sanofi's planned $1.9 billion acquisition of Kadmon will hand it a new drug for treating chronic graft-versus-host disease, a condition in transplant patients where the donated cells attack the recipient's body. This will strengthen Sanofi's general medicines business, which mostly consists of older drugs. The deal marks a departure from Sanofi's main focus of strengthening its pipeline of specialty medicines that target diseases such as cancer and immunological conditions. But analysts said the deal made sense because the drug, called Rezurock, could be sold alongside other medicines for transplant patients in Sanofi's general medicines portfolio. Sanofi shares are down 2.5% at EUR 84.79. Kadmon soared $3.77, or 71%, to $9.07. Kadmon stock holders will receive $9.50 a share in cash, representing a total equity value of about $1.9 billion on a fully diluted basis.
The Swiss stock market extended its previous day's losses on Wednesday. Investors were increasingly cautious in view of the European Central Bank's (ECB) monetary policy decision on Thursday. The SMI lost 1 per cent to 12,215 points. Holcim was very weak for the third day in a row, losing another 2.3 per cent. The cement manufacturer is facing heavy fines in France because of its Syria dealings. The banking stocks UBS (-0.8%) and Credit Suisse (-1.1%) did not benefit from the recent rise in market interest rates, Partners Group even lost 2.8 percent. Credit Suisse, meanwhile, appointed new board members following the upheavals surrounding Archegos and Greensill. Adecco placed shares and raised fresh capital. The funds are to be used to finance the acquisition of Akka Technologies. The shares fell 0.7 per cent. Novartis (-1.8%), through its generics division Sandoz, signed a marketing agreement with biopharmaceutical company Bio-Thera Solutions for the biosimilar bevacizumab. Among the second-line stocks, SoftwareOne (-7.2%), Huber+Suhner (-10.2%) and Vetropack (-3.8%) suffered from share sales by major shareholders.
European stocks fell Stocks fell Wednesday as investor sentiment was dampened by fears over economic growth prospects while the future of stimulus measures remains up in the air. Investors are selling out of European stocks ahead of Thursday's ECB meeting, because of rising expectations that policy makers will discuss scaling back asset purchases, according to Antonio Cavarero, head of investments at Generali Investments. "The trigger comes from the soon-to-be slow process of tapering," Mr. Cavarero said. "It is right for the ECB to start talking about tapering. It is appropriate for them to take some support away, but they will fine-tune and bring it to lower levels.“ The Stoxx Europe 600 index fell by 1.1% to 467.9 points. In Paris, the CAC 40 and SBF 120 lost 0.9% and 0.8%, respectively. In Frankfurt, the DAX gave up 1.4% and the FTSE 100 shed 0.7% in London. Stellantis (-2.9%) fell after Chinese carmaker Dongfeng Motor announced that it had sold 1.15% of its shares at a price of EUR 16.65 per share via an accelerated placement to institutional investors. On the London Stock Exchange, British retailer Wm. Morrison Supermarkets (+0.5%) announced on Wednesday that it was in talks for a possible auction to resolve a competitive situation between US private equity firm Clayton Dubilier & Rice (CD&R) and a consortium led by Fortress Investment Group, a subsidiary of Japanese conglomerate SoftBank. Scor (+1.5%) updated the outlook for its various business lines to 2022, ahead of a day dedicated to investors. The announcements of the reinsurance group are somewhat "disappointing", considers Jefferies, while the market was hoping that the reinsurer would announce the launch of a share buyback plan.
Stocks fell Wednesday on investors’ concerns that Covid-19 cases remain elevated and uncertainty about when central banks may dial back easy-money policies. The S&P 500 declined 5.96 points or 0.1%, to 4514.07. The Dow Jones Industrial Average retreated 68.93 points, or 0.2%, to 35031.07. Meanwhile, the tech-heavy Nasdaq fell 87.69 points, or 0.6%, to 15286.64 as large technology stocks dropped. Stocks have lost steam in recent days as investors assessed the rise in coronavirus cases and a weaker-than-expected jobs report on Friday. Money managers are awaiting fresh cues from the Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank about how signs of a slowing economic recovery and high inflation levels may influence their plans to taper monetary stimulus. The S&P 500 index, which has risen more than 20% so far this year, is making investors wonder if the same pace of gains will carry to the second half. PayPal dropped $8.03, or 2.7%, to $285.23 after saying it would purchase Japanese “buy now, pay later” startup Paidy for $2.7 billion. Bitcoin’s selloff eased Wednesday, as it edged about 1.9% lower from its 5 p.m. ET level on Tuesday to trade at about $45,896.30 apiece, according to CoinDesk. The price plunged as much as 17% briefly on Tuesday, and ended the day down about 10%. Shares of cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase fell $8.6, or 3.2%, to $258.20. The company said Wednesday that the Securities and Exchange Commission has threatened to sue if it launches a program that lets users earn interest by lending crypto assets.
The stock markets in East Asia followed the negative international trends on Thursday and fell sharply in some cases. The Nikkei index in Tokyo lost 0.8 per cent to 29,942 points. In Seoul and Hong Kong markets drop 1.2 and 1.6 per cent. The Shanghai composite, on the other hand, holds its ground after new data again showed divergent trends in consumer and producer prices. While the former rose slightly less than expected, producer prices, which were already very high, increased more than estimated. Companies are apparently encountering problems passing on price increases.
U.S. Treasury yields pulled back across the board on Wednesday after a report from the Federal Reserve indicated that economic growth in the U.S. slowed to a moderate pace in early July through August. Meanwhile, an auction of 10-year notes was viewed as average and didn’t appear to saw trading in benchmark Treasuries. The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note ticked down 0.037 percentage point to 1.333%, the largest one-day yield decline in more than three weeks.
Berenberg increases ASML target to EUR 845 (670) - Buy
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