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Bayer to Collaborate With CureVac on Covid-19 Vaccine Candidate
Topic of the day
Bayer AG said Thursday that it has agreed to collaborate with CureVac NV to support the development and supply of the U.S.-listed biopharmaceutical company's Covid-19 vaccine candidate CVnCoV. Under the agreement, the German chemical and pharmaceutical conglomerate will support CureVac with country operations within the European Union and selected additional markets in order to facilitate the supply of several hundred million doses. CureVac will be the marketing authorization holder for the product. The financial terms of the deal weren't disclosed.
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The SMI closed up 0.3 percent on 10,779 points despite a slight hiccup in late trading as the upbeat sentiment continued Thursday. Hopes of US economic stimuli and that vaccines will soon curb the coronavirus pandemic continued to buoy markets. Richemont led the SMI, surging 3.8 percent. Competitor Swatch rose 2.8 percent as market participants pointed to figures from LVMH subsidiary Tiffany and good prospects for luxury goods makers overall. Lafargeholcim gained 2.4 percent on news of its acquisition of US roof company Firestone Building Products for USD 3.4 billion. Cyclical heavyweights again dragged down the index. Roche slid 1.8 percent on no news at the rear of the SMI. Novartis fell 0.6 percent to CHF 82.29, although analysts had raised their target to CHF 118 from CHF 115. Sika gained 1.0 percent to CHF 251.40 after raised their target to CHF 290 from CHF 250, saying it is gaining market share in China and should profit from stricter environmental rules in developed markets.
European stocks rise as investors shrug off yesterday's riots at the US Capitol amid optimism about potential economic stimulus under the incoming Biden administration. The Stoxx Europe 600 and DAX rise 0.5%, the CAC-40 gains 0.7% and the FTSE 100 edges 0.2% higher. "European equity markets finish higher on the day as the bulls are in control," David Madden at CMC Markets says. "Worries about the pandemic and the lockdowns have waned for now and high hopes for a pro-stimulus Biden administration in the US are helping too." LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE said Thursday it has completed the acquisition of the iconic jewelry store Tiffany & Co. (TIF), after the deal hit some roadblocks during the pandemic. LVMH named Anthony Ledru new chief executive of the U.S. brand. Ledru was previously executive vice president, global commercial activities at Louis Vuitton and senior vice president of North America at Tiffany. Alessandro Bogliolo, current Tiffany CEO, will remain at the company during a transition period through Jan .22. Tiffany shares were halted premarket for the news. The Veolia group (Paris:VIE) announces that it sent to the Board of Directors of Suez, on January 7, 2021, the public offer proposal that it intends to file for the 70.1% of the capital of Suez which is not in its possession. This formal proposal describes all the elements of the industrial project, the social project and the financial conditions that Veolia will offer when the offer is actually submitted. The submission of this formal proposal to the Board of Directors of the Suez group is, once again, in line with Veolia's desire to be perfectly transparent about its proposed project with Suez, and in line with all the announcements and all the commitments it has made public since August 30, 2020.
Political unrest in Washington didn't dent the stock market's ongoing rally, with U.S. stocks climbing toward fresh records. Financial and technology stocks led Thursday's gains, pushing the S&P 500 up 1.5% and putting the broad index on pace to close at its first record of 2021. The Dow Jones Industrial Average also rose, adding 0.7%, while the Nasdaq Composite jumped 2.6%, putting both of those benchmarks on track for new closing highs as well. Investors largely looked past Wednesday's violent clash between pro-Trump protesters and law enforcement in the Capitol building that left four people dead, instead focusing on what the shift of political power from Republicans to Democrats means for the market. Atos SE said Thursday that it has approached New York-listed DXC Technology Co. for a potential takeover. The French IT company said there can be no certainty at this stage the approach will translate into any agreement or transaction. Reuters first reported Thursday that Atos made the approach, valuing DXC Technology at more than $10 billion. Atos didn't comment on the value of the potential deal. International Business Machines Corp. on Thursday appointed Martin Schroeter chief executive of the independent company that will be created through the spinoff of its managed-infrastructure-services business.
The new record highs set by Wall Street continue to drive up prices on the stock exchanges in East Asia and Australia at the end of the week. The Nikkei-225 climbed above 28,000 points for the first time since August 1990. Hopes of a strong economic recovery in 2021 are driving the markets higher, according to reports. The biggest gain was in Seoul, where the Kospi rose by 3.2 per cent.
U.S. Treasury yields continued to push higher in Asia, as rising risk appetite weighed on bonds. Yields have risen faster than many expected after Democrats won control of the Senate, with traders focusing on the potential of more economic stimulus and the return of long-muted inflation.
JPM lowers the RWE target to 37,50 (38) EUR – Overweight
IR rises the Zalando target to 108 (101) EUR – Buy
UBS rises the ASML target to 395 (350) EUR – Neutral
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