TransUnion Is Near $3.1 Billion Purchase
Topic of the day
TransUnion is nearing a deal to buy information-services company Neustar Inc. for $3.1 billion, according to people familiar with the matter, a move that could help the consumer-credit reporting giant diversify beyond its core business and put data to new uses. The purchase of closely held Neustar could be finalized by Monday, the people said, assuming the talks don't fall apart at the last minute. Reston, Va.-based Neustar uses analytics and modeling to help businesses identify potential customers and determine which ads to serve them, according to its website. It also provides cybersecurity services. Chicago-based TransUnion, with a market value of roughly $24 billion, is one of the major credit-reporting firms, alongside Experian PLC and Equifax Inc. TransUnion is best known for selling credit reports and other consumer data to lenders for underwriting purposes. Along with others in the industry, it has been adding capabilities as more businesses adopt their own criteria for assessing customers. The Biden administration has also signaled interest in establishing a government-backed consumer-credit firm.
After four trading days in a row with losses, the Swiss stock market recovered minimally at the beginning of the week. The SMI rose by 0.1 per cent to 12,075 points. Among the 20 SMI stocks, there were 14 price gainers and six price losers. 25.16 (Friday: 26.52) million shares were traded. Overall, the news situation was thin. The stocks from the banking and insurance sectors were particularly sought after, recovering from the losses at the end of the week. The shares of Swiss Re were the biggest SMI gainer with a plus of 2.0 per cent. In contrast, the shares of index heavyweights Nestle (+0.1%), Novartis (-0.1%) and Roche (-0.7%) were mostly in decline. The Holcim share continued to benefit from the sale of the Brazil business and gained 1.2 per cent. The shares had fallen slightly on Friday, but had outperformed the overall market. According to Morgan Stanley, the sale is a positive step in the company's strategic goals. Shares in Zurich Airport (+1.2%) rose in the wake of good news from competitor Fraport. Fraport's traffic figures, for example, showed how strong the post-Corona recovery is, it said.
European equity indices ended higher on Monday, buoyed by a rebound in two major US indices as investors hoped US policymakers and the Federal Reserve (Fed) would extend their support for the economy. The Stoxx Europe 600 index rose 0.4% to 467.7 points. In Paris, the CAC 40 and SBF 120 gained 0.2% each. In Frankfurt, the DAX 30 gained 0.6%, while the FTSE 100 in London rose 0.6%. Associated British Foods PLC said Monday that its full-year adjusted operating profit is now expected to surpass the previous year’s despite lower-than-expected sales, and that Primark and the AB Food business are anticipated to exceed management’s previous expectations. The British conglomerate said that Primark’s adjusted operating profit for the year ending Sept. 18 is expected to be ahead of last year, and that the operating margin for the fourth quarter was strong. The FTSE 100 listed company said adjusted earnings per share are anticipated to be marginally ahead of last year. The European Union’s recent $270 million fine against WhatsApp was held up for months by disagreements among national authorities, ratcheting up tensions over how to enforce the bloc’s privacy rules. The varied approaches to policing the EU’s strict General Data Protection Regulation are fueling calls to redesign how national authorities from the 27 EU countries can intervene in each others’ cases and to explore creating a broader EU-wide regulatory system. WhatsApp, owned by Facebook Inc., was fined for failing to tell EU residents enough about what it does with their data, including sharing their information with other Facebook units.
The S&P 500 closed higher even as losses across several sectors offset a rally among energy shares. The S&P 500 rose about 0.2% while the Nasdaq Composite declined less than 0.1%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was the strongest performer of the three major U.S. stock indexes, rising 0.8%. Stocks' momentum has taken a hit lately, with both the S&P 500 and Dow logging their steepest one-week declines since June on Friday. Elon Musk’s SpaceX is aiming to cement its position as a leading space enterprise with a mission this week that seeks to deliver four civilians to orbit for several days and then return them to Earth. The Inspiration4 flight, which could launch as soon as Wednesday, is a more ambitious and technically difficult one than those conducted over the summer by space companies founded by Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson, according to industry executives and consultants. It is the first taking only commercial astronauts, or those flying without government backing, to orbit, SpaceX has said. This gargantuan deep-water drilling base 80 miles off the Louisiana coast hadn’t produced a drop of oil for Royal Dutch Shell PLC since Hurricane Ida. Turning it back on was proving to be an extraordinary challenge. Power had to be restored after an apparent lightning strike blew a key fuse. At least one of four giant cranes needed to load diesel for generators had to be brought back into service so a boat could restock the platform’s supply of backup fuel, which was down to two days’ worth. The more than 30 miles of pipe on board had to be inspected for leaks.
Stock markets in East Asia and Australia showed no consistent trend on Tuesday. Traders said that investors were mostly holding back in anticipation of the US consumer price data. Accordingly, Chinese investors are acting cautiously. In Shanghai and Hong Kong, prices are more or less treading water. Added to this is the uncertainty about further regulatory measures by Beijing against the large Chinese technology groups.
U.S. treasury yields edged higher, with investors awaiting this week's round of closely watched economic data.
IR rises the RWE target to 34 (32) EUR – Hold
Dt. Bank lowers the Scor target to 33 (36) EUR – Buy
Dt. Bank rises the Merck target to 240 (220) EUR – Buy
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