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Dow Jones (INDEXDJX: .DJI) slips as presidential debate approaches

Dow Jones (INDEXDJX: .DJI) slips as presidential debate approaches

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INDEXDJX: .DJI indexdjx dji Dow 29000 global economic growth Robust Economy

September 29, 2020 Update: The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX: .DJI) slipped today after rallying on Friday and Monday due to renewed hopes that there would be another stimulus package. Today the index is falling ahead of the presidential debate between President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden.

Globally, more than 1 million people have now died from the coronavirus, and that’s serving to shake up global stock market indices as well. When Trump and Biden take the stage for their debate tonight, they are sure to discuss the handling of the pandemic and plans for the economic recovery. The U.S. has the highest number of coronavirus cases in the world at 7.1 million and the highest death toll at more than 205,000 of any country in the world.

The debate could set the tone for the markets leading up to the November presidential election.

Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX: .DJI) declines amid economic uncertainty

September 18, 2020 Update: The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX: .DJI) fell 150 points before cutting its losses in morning trading today. U.S. stocks have been pressured by signs of trouble in the economic recovery and a fresh surge in coronavirus infections.

Today is also a quadruple witching day, which means both options and futures on indexes and stocks are expiring at the same time. The result is volatility on the stock market. The phenomenon often results in above-average volumes due to the way traders are moving out of hedges on their futures and options contracts.

Other pressure on the Dow Jones is coming from the presidential election and Congress’ lack of a deal on further coronavirus stimulus measures.

Survey puts Dow Jones Industrial Average at 52k in 5 years

August 17, 2020 Update: A new survey suggests the average investor is excessively optimistic—so optimistic, in fact, that they see the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX: .DJI) at 52,000 in only five years.

MarketWatch reported on the survey, which was conducted by money-management firm Schroders. The firm surveyed 23,450 private investors in 32 different countries, including 1,500 people in the U.S. U.S. investors are even more investors than those in other countries.

The average investor expects stock prices to continue skyrocketing, putting the Dow Jones at around 52,000 after accounting for dividends. The average investor predicted a return of 15.4% per year for the next five years.

How The Dow Jones Industrial Average Works

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX: .DJI) has fallen off a cliff the past few weeks. The index is up almost 5% in trading on March 13th 2020, but that is still several thousand points below the recent high. The DJI is currently trading at 22,188.26. Previously, the Dow climbed to a new record high at 29,408 in early February before pulling back not long after the market opened. However, as the day rolled on, the index flipped back into the green.

The Dow Jones was up about 84 points amid further progress in the trade talks between China and the U.S. China plans to slash in half its tariffs on some $75 billion of imported U.S. goods starting on Feb. 14. It’s the first step in the nation’s phase-one trade resolution with Washington. Tariffs on many goods will be cut from 10% to 5%, while other goods’ tariffs will be slashed from 5% to 2.5%, according to China’s Ministry of Finance.

INDEXDJX: .DJI: Previously

Commenting on today’s trading which saw the Dow Jones INDEXDJX: .DJI near 29000, Gorilla Trades strategist Ken Berman said: 

It seems that the resilience of domestic stocks continues to be impressive. Indeed, it only took a few days to completely erase last week’s scary sell-off. It wasn’t that long time ago that we celebrated Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX: .DJI) 28000, and thanks to today’s broad rally, the industrial average got very close to topping 29000, and bulls already have the historic 30,000 level in their crosshairs.”

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Q4 2019 hedge fund letters, conferences and more

The major indices all finished in the green for the second day in a row, and the large-cap benchmarks also closed at their highest levels ever. Equities were boosted by the de-escalation between the U.S. and Iran. The Dow Jones (INDEXDJX: .DJI) was up 212, or 0.7%, to 28,957, the Nasdaq gained 74, or 0.8%, to 9,203 while the S&P 500 rose by 22, or 0.7%, to 3,275. Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by an almost 3-to-2 ratio on the NYSE, where volume was slightly above average.  

Even though the major indices finished below their intraday highs. This was due to a shallow afternoon dip. However, all of the key sectors gained ground, with even the defensive utilities edging higher. Tech stocks, consumer goods, and services were the strongest issues, which is as healthy as it gets when it comes to bull market rallies. The relative weakness of small-caps was the only major red flag today. This was despite the fact that large-caps continue to hit record highs, the Russell 2000 remains much weak from a technical perspective.

Dow 29000 Indexdjx:.DJI this week?

The Volatility Index (VIX) hit its lowest level since last week’s airstrike. Additionally, short interest continues to decline on Wall Street.  Analysts agree that there is no lack of risk appetite among equity investors. That said, we did have several short-lived pullbacks in recent weeks. These downturns ensure that the positive sentiment hasn't turned into exuberance. In fact, the positive shift in global economic trends provided another boost for stocks, just after the trade agreement between the U.S. and China. The lofty gains will eventually lead to a deeper correction, until the bullish catalysts keep on coming. In the meantime, the foundation of the rally remains solid.

Iran in focus

The traditional safe-haven assets, such as Treasuries, Silver and gold all declined today, and the price of oil also continued to fall in the face of the improving economic outlook, as the odds of a new military conflict in the Middle East declined. President Trump unexpectedly called for the resumption of the talks with Iran. While the hardliners in the Persian state called for revenge, downplaying the effects of yesterday’s missile attacks. However, the two sides seem to be steering away from a major conflict.

The government jobs report will likely steal the show tomorrow. Volatility could already spike higher in pre-market trading because of the release. All eyes will be on the non-farm payrolls figure following last month’s blowout reading of 266,000. This week’s bullish ADP payrolls number also indicates further gains. The unemployment rate is expected to be unchanged at 3.5%, while hourly earnings are forecast to rise by 0.3%. As the global economy has been showing signs of life in recent weeks, Treasuries yields could explode higher. Yields will follow if the U.S. labor market continue to show robust growth.

Dow (Indexdjx:.DJI) 29000 next?

Technical Corner.  Since the major indices all erased last Friday’s dip. It’s no surprise that technicals continue to be bullish across the board. Indeed, not a single trend indicator flashing red. The major indices are still well above their rising 200-day moving averages of 8,153 for the Nasdaq, 2,981 for the S&P 500, and 26,817 for the Dow Jones Industrial Average and now just shy of Dow 29000. Despite the late-day pullback, the benchmarks are also north of their steeply rising 50-day moving averages of 3,149 for the S&P 500, 8,682 for the Nasdaq, and 28,024 for the Dow.

Thanks to five consecutive bullish months, Apple’s (AAPL) stock achieved yet another technical milestone, passing the $300 per share level yesterday. Apple lost the title of the most valuable public company due to the IPO of the Saudi oil giant Aramco.  However, Apple took over Microsoft (MSFT), while crossing $1.3 trillion in total capitalization. The stock hit another record high today, and it’s well above both its moving averages. However, an orderly pullback of the INDEXDJX: .DJI could happen anytime.  Apple is still likely to lead the way higher in 2020. Stay tuned!

The post Dow Jones (INDEXDJX: .DJI) slips as presidential debate approaches appeared first on ValueWalk.

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Four burning questions about the future of the $16.5B Novo-Catalent deal

To build or to buy? That’s a classic question for pharma boardrooms, and Novo Nordisk is going with both.
Beyond spending billions of dollars to expand…

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To build or to buy? That’s a classic question for pharma boardrooms, and Novo Nordisk is going with both.

Beyond spending billions of dollars to expand its own production capacity for its weight loss drugs, the Danish drugmaker said Monday it will pay $11 billion to acquire three manufacturing plants from Catalent. It’s part of a broader $16.5 billion deal with Novo Holdings, the investment arm of the pharma’s parent group, which agreed to acquire the contract manufacturer and take it private.

It’s a big deal for all parties, with potential ripple effects across the biotech ecosystem. Here’s a look at some of the most pressing questions to watch after Monday’s announcement.

Why did Novo do this?

Novo Holdings isn’t the most obvious buyer for Catalent, particularly after last year’s on-and-off M&A interest from the serial acquirer Danaher. But the deal could benefit both Novo Holdings and Novo Nordisk.

Novo Nordisk’s biggest challenge has been simply making enough of the weight loss drug Wegovy and diabetes therapy Ozempic. On last week’s earnings call, Novo Nordisk CEO Lars Fruergaard Jørgensen said the company isn’t constrained by capital in its efforts to boost manufacturing. Rather, the main challenge is the limited amount of capabilities out there, he said.

“Most pharmaceutical companies in the world would be shopping among the same manufacturers,” he said. “There’s not an unlimited amount of machinery and people to build it.”

While Novo was already one of Catalent’s major customers, the manufacturer has been hamstrung by its own balance sheet. With roughly $5 billion in debt on its books, it’s had to juggle paying down debt with sufficiently investing in its facilities. That’s been particularly challenging in keeping pace with soaring demand for GLP-1 drugs.

Novo, on the other hand, has the balance sheet to funnel as much money as needed into the plants in Italy, Belgium, and Indiana. It’s also struggled to make enough of its popular GLP-1 drugs to meet their soaring demand, with documented shortages of both Ozempic and Wegovy.

The impact won’t be immediate. The parties expect the deal to close near the end of 2024. Novo Nordisk said it expects the three new sites to “gradually increase Novo Nordisk’s filling capacity from 2026 and onwards.”

As for the rest of Catalent — nearly 50 other sites employing thousands of workers — Novo Holdings will take control. The group previously acquired Altasciences in 2021 and Ritedose in 2022, so the Catalent deal builds on a core investing interest in biopharma services, Novo Holdings CEO Kasim Kutay told Endpoints News.

Kasim Kutay

When asked about possible site closures or layoffs, Kutay said the team hasn’t thought about that.

“That’s not our track record. Our track record is to invest in quality businesses and help them grow,” he said. “There’s always stuff to do with any asset you own, but we haven’t bought this company to do some of the stuff you’re talking about.”

What does it mean for Catalent’s customers? 

Until the deal closes, Catalent will operate as a standalone business. After it closes, Novo Nordisk said it will honor its customer obligations at the three sites, a spokesperson said. But they didn’t answer a question about what happens when those contracts expire.

The wrinkle is the long-term future of the three plants that Novo Nordisk is paying for. Those sites don’t exclusively pump out Wegovy, but that could be the logical long-term aim for the Danish drugmaker.

The ideal scenario is that pricing and timelines remain the same for customers, said Nicole Paulk, CEO of the gene therapy startup Siren Biotechnology.

Nicole Paulk

“The name of the group that you’re going to send your check to is now going to be Novo Holdings instead of Catalent, but otherwise everything remains the same,” Paulk told Endpoints. “That’s the best-case scenario.”

In a worst case, Paulk said she feared the new owners could wind up closing sites or laying off Catalent groups. That could create some uncertainty for customers looking for a long-term manufacturing partner.

Are shareholders and regulators happy? 

The pandemic was a wild ride for Catalent’s stock, with shares surging from about $40 to $140 and then crashing back to earth. The $63.50 share price for the takeover is a happy ending depending on the investor.

On that point, the investing giant Elliott Investment Management is satisfied. Marc Steinberg, a partner at Elliott, called the agreement “an outstanding outcome” that “clearly maximizes value for Catalent stockholders” in a statement.

Elliott helped kick off a strategic review last August that culminated in the sale agreement. Compared to Catalent’s stock price before that review started, the deal pays a nearly 40% premium.

Alessandro Maselli

But this is hardly a victory lap for CEO Alessandro Maselli, who took over in July 2022 when Catalent’s stock price was north of $100. Novo’s takeover is a tacit acknowledgment that Maselli could never fully right the ship, as operational problems plagued the company throughout 2023 while it was limited by its debt.

Additional regulatory filings in the next few weeks could give insight into just how competitive the sale process was. William Blair analysts said they don’t expect a competing bidder “given the organic investments already being pursued at other leading CDMOs and the breadth and scale of Catalent’s operations.”

The Blair analysts also noted the companies likely “expect to spend some time educating relevant government agencies” about the deal, given the lengthy closing timeline. Given Novo Nordisk’s ascent — it’s now one of Europe’s most valuable companies — paired with the limited number of large contract manufacturers, antitrust regulators could be interested in taking a close look.

Are Catalent’s problems finally a thing of the past?

Catalent ran into a mix of financial and operational problems over the past year that played no small part in attracting the interest of an activist like Elliott.

Now with a deal in place, how quickly can Novo rectify those problems? Some of the challenges were driven by the demands of being a publicly traded company, like failing to meet investors’ revenue expectations or even filing earnings reports on time.

But Catalent also struggled with its business at times, with a range of manufacturing delays, inspection reports and occasionally writing down acquisitions that didn’t pan out. Novo’s deep pockets will go a long way to a turnaround, but only the future will tell if all these issues are fixed.

Kutay said his team is excited by the opportunity and was satisfied with the due diligence it did on the company.

“We believe we’re buying a strong company with a good management team and good prospects,” Kutay said. “If that wasn’t the case, I don’t think we’d be here.”

Amber Tong and Reynald Castañeda contributed reporting.

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Petrina Kamya, Ph.D., Head of AI Platforms at Insilico Medicine, presents at BIO CEO & Investor Conference

Petrina Kamya, PhD, Head of AI Platforms and President of Insilico Medicine Canada, will present at the BIO CEO & Investor Conference happening Feb….

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Petrina Kamya, PhD, Head of AI Platforms and President of Insilico Medicine Canada, will present at the BIO CEO & Investor Conference happening Feb. 26-27 at the New York Marriott Marquis in New York City. Dr. Kamya will speak as part of the panel “AI within Biopharma: Separating Value from Hype,” on Feb. 27, 1pm ET along with Michael Nally, CEO of Generate: Biomedicines and Liz Schwarzbach, PhD, CBO of BigHat Biosciences.

Credit: Insilico Medicine

Petrina Kamya, PhD, Head of AI Platforms and President of Insilico Medicine Canada, will present at the BIO CEO & Investor Conference happening Feb. 26-27 at the New York Marriott Marquis in New York City. Dr. Kamya will speak as part of the panel “AI within Biopharma: Separating Value from Hype,” on Feb. 27, 1pm ET along with Michael Nally, CEO of Generate: Biomedicines and Liz Schwarzbach, PhD, CBO of BigHat Biosciences.

The session will look at how the latest artificial intelligence (AI) tools – including generative AI and large language models – are currently being used to advance the discovery and design of new drugs, and which technologies are still in development. 

The BIO CEO & Investor Conference brings together over 1,000 attendees and more than 700 companies across industry and institutional investment to discuss the future investment landscape of biotechnology. Sessions focus on topics such as therapeutic advancements, market outlook, and policy priorities.

Insilico Medicine is a leading, clinical stage AI-driven drug discovery company that has raised over $400m in investments since it was founded in 2014. Dr. Kamya leads the development of the Company’s end-to-end generative AI platform, Pharma.AI from Insilico’s AI R&D Center in Montreal. Using modern machine learning techniques in the context of chemistry and biology, the platform has driven the discovery and design of 30+ new therapies, with five in clinical stages – for cancer, fibrosis, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), and COVID-19. The Company’s lead drug, for the chronic, rare lung condition idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, is the first AI-designed drug for an AI-discovered target to reach Phase II clinical trials with patients. Nine of the top 20 pharmaceutical companies have used Insilico’s AI platform to advance their programs, and the Company has a number of major strategic licensing deals around its AI-designed therapeutic assets, including with Sanofi, Exelixis and Menarini. 

 

About Insilico Medicine

Insilico Medicine, a global clinical stage biotechnology company powered by generative AI, is connecting biology, chemistry, and clinical trials analysis using next-generation AI systems. The company has developed AI platforms that utilize deep generative models, reinforcement learning, transformers, and other modern machine learning techniques for novel target discovery and the generation of novel molecular structures with desired properties. Insilico Medicine is developing breakthrough solutions to discover and develop innovative drugs for cancer, fibrosis, immunity, central nervous system diseases, infectious diseases, autoimmune diseases, and aging-related diseases. www.insilico.com 


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Another country is getting ready to launch a visa for digital nomads

Early reports are saying Japan will soon have a digital nomad visa for high-earning foreigners.

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Over the last decade, the explosion of remote work that came as a result of improved technology and the pandemic has allowed an increasing number of people to become digital nomads. 

When looked at more broadly as anyone not required to come into a fixed office but instead moves between different locations such as the home and the coffee shop, the latest estimate shows that there were more than 35 million such workers in the world by the end of 2023 while over half of those come from the United States.

Related: There is a new list of cities that are best for digital nomads

While remote work has also allowed many to move to cheaper places and travel around the world while still bringing in income, working outside of one's home country requires either dual citizenship or work authorization — the global shift toward remote work has pushed many countries to launch specific digital nomad visas to boost their economies and bring in new residents.

Japan is a very popular destination for U.S. tourists. 

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This popular vacation destination will soon have a nomad visa

Spain, Portugal, Indonesia, Malaysia, Costa Rica, Brazil, Latvia and Malta are some of the countries currently offering specific visas for foreigners who want to live there while bringing in income from abroad.

More Travel:

With the exception of a few, Asian countries generally have stricter immigration laws and were much slower to launch these types of visas that some of the countries with weaker economies had as far back as 2015. As first reported by the Japan Times, the country's Immigration Services Agency ended up making the leap toward a visa for those who can earn more than ¥10 million ($68,300 USD) with income from another country.

The Japanese government has not yet worked out the specifics of how long the visa will be valid for or how much it will cost — public comment on the proposal is being accepted throughout next week. 

That said, early reports say the visa will be shorter than the typical digital nomad option that allows foreigners to live in a country for several years. The visa will reportedly be valid for six months or slightly longer but still no more than a year — along with the ability to work, this allows some to stay beyond the 90-day tourist period typically afforded to those from countries with visa-free agreements.

'Not be given a residence card of residence certificate'

While one will be able to reapply for the visa after the time runs out, this can only be done by exiting the country and being away for six months before coming back again — becoming a permanent resident on the pathway to citizenship is an entirely different process with much more strict requirements.

"Those living in Japan with the digital nomad visa will not be given a residence card or a residence certificate, which provide access to certain government benefits," reports the news outlet. "The visa cannot be renewed and must be reapplied for, with this only possible six months after leaving the countr

The visa will reportedly start in March and also allow holders to bring their spouses and families with them. To start using the visa, holders will also need to purchase private health insurance from their home country while taxes on any money one earns will also need to be paid through one's home country.

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