(Reuters) – Judy Shelton, U.S. President Donald Trump’s controversial pick to serve on the Federal Reserve’s interest-rate-setting panel, does not currently have the votes to win confirmation in the U.S. Senate, Republican Senator John Thune said Tuesday.
Thune is the Senate’s majority whip, whose job is to keep track of how fellow Republicans will vote on any given issue.
« We’re still working it, » Thune told reporters at the U.S. Capitol, when asked if Shelton has the votes needed. « She’s a priority for the White House. It’s the Federal Reserve. It’s important. So, obviously, we want to get it done. But we’re not going to bring it up until we have the votes to confirm her.”
In the full Senate, where Republicans hold a 53-47 majority, Senators Mitt Romney and Susan Collins have already declared their intention to oppose her.
If two more join, Shelton would become the fifth of Trump’s Fed picks to be blocked from joining the top ranks of the U.S. central bank.
Shelton is a former Trump campaign adviser whose has championed a gold standard and more cooperation between the central bank and the White House, two outside-the-mainstream views that have drawn criticism even from some in Trump’s Republican party.
In July the Senate Banking Committee advanced Shelton’s nomination to consideration by the full Senate in a 13-12 partyline vote.
Shelton has been seen as Trump’s potential pick for succeeding Powell, should Trump win a second term in November.
(Reporting by David Morgan, Ann Saphir and Jonnelle Marte; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Marguerita Choy)
JPMorgan Chase & Co (NYSE: JPM) says it has noticed a troubling pattern with its work-from-home employees, particularly those who are of a younger age, Bloomberg reported Monday.What Happened: CEO Jamie Dimon told analysts Keefe, Bruyette & Woods in a private meeting that productivity was particularly affected on Mondays and Fridays, according to Bloomberg. »The WFH lifestyle seems to have impacted younger employees [at JPMorgan], and overall productivity and ‘creative combustion’ has taken a hit, » KBW Managing Director Brian Kleinhanzl wrote to clients in a note, citing the meeting with Dimon.JPMorgan spokesman Michael Fusco told Bloomberg that the productivity of employees was affected « in general, not just younger employees, » but added that younger workers « could be disadvantaged by missed learning opportunities » as they were not in offices.Why It Matters: The New York-based lender informed most senior sales staff and trading employees that they would be required to return to offices by Sept. 21, Bloomberg noted.Workers in other roles are reportedly being encouraged to return to their desks up to a maximum of half building capacity in New York.CEOs across the corporate world have a different take on the work from home environment. »I felt that, given a lot of our work could be done from home, it made sense for us to contribute to social distancing, » Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ: GOOGL) (NASDAQ: GOOG) CEO Sundar Pichai said in May in relation to the pandemic.Amazon.com, Inc (NASDAQ: AMZN) CEO Jeff Bezos wrote in a note to employees in March, « Much of the essential work we do cannot be done from home. » The e-commerce giant purchased 900,000 square feet of office space in six cities in the United States last month.Facebook Inc (NASDAQ: FB) has also been expanding its office space taking advantage of the pandemic. A company spokesperson said on the development that its offices are « vitally important to help accommodate anticipated growth and meet the needs of our employees that need or prefer to work from campus. »Price Action: JPMorgan traded nearly 0.3% higher at $102.80 in the pre-market session on Tuesday.See more from Benzinga * JPMorgan Removes Employees Who Pocketed COVID-19 Small Business Relief Funds: FT * Online Ad Giants Taboola, Outbrain Backtrack On Merger Plan * Unilever Pledges .2B To Eliminate Fossil Fuels From Cleaning Products Within A Decade(C) 2020 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.
The initial public offering of Warren Buffett-backed Snowflake is about to set a record as the largest software deal ever as it draws heightened interest from investors. It trades Wednesday.
The financial services industry seems very exorcised by a relatively modest proposal in Joe Biden’s tax plan — namely, changing the tax incentive to save for retirement from a deduction to a flat, refundable tax credit. Employers and individuals take an immediate deduction for contributions to retirement plans and participants pay no tax on investment returns until benefits are paid out in retirement. This favorable tax treatment significantly reduces the lifetime taxes of those who receive part of their compensation in contributions to retirement plans relative to those who receive all their earnings in cash wages.
(Bloomberg) — Cloud-data software maker Snowflake Inc. raised $3.36 billion in the year’s biggest U.S. initial public offering for an operating company, pricing its shares above the marketed range.The San Mateo, California-based company sold 28 million shares Tuesday for $120 apiece, according to a statement. Snowflake had marketed the shares for $100 to $110 apiece, a range that was boosted from $75 to $85 on Monday.The listing ranks as the biggest U.S. IPO this year, excluding the $4 billion offering by the special purpose acquisition company, or SPAC, backed by billionaire Bill Ackman.Snowflake is valued in the IPO at more than $33 billion based on the outstanding shares listed in its prospectus. That compares with a valuation of $12.4 billion in a private funding round announced in February.It’s a busy week for IPOs as technology and other companies rush to get in the door ahead of the Nov. 3 U.S. presidential election. JFrog Inc., Sumo Logic Inc. and Unity Software Inc. are among 15 companies going public this week, seeking to raise a combined $8.3 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.Snowflake lured Warren Buffett to invest in his first-ever IPO. Berkshire Hathaway Inc. and Salesforce Ventures, an arm of Salesforce.com Inc., have each committed to buy $250 million of the company’s Class A common stock in a private placement. Berkshire has also agreed to buy 4 million shares in a secondary transaction, according to Snowflake’s filing.Snowflake, founded in 2012, is a rare challenger to Amazon.com Inc. as a provider of data warehouse technology, which compiles information from different systems so clients can analyze it together in the same place. In the fiscal year that ended Jan. 31, Snowflake’s revenue soared 174% to $264.7 million compared with the previous fiscal year, the company reported. In the sixth months that ended July 31, sales were $242 million, a 133% year-over-year increase.The offering is being led by Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Morgan Stanley. Snowflake’s shares are expected to begin trading Wednesday on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol SNOW.(Updates with statement in second paragraph)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
The World Trade Organization ruled today that US tariffs on Chinese imports are illegal under global trade rules. The new taxes in question were imposed on Americans by president Donald Trump, ostensibly put in place to combat Chinese efforts to steal intellectual property from US companies through coercive investment pacts, among other tactics. Now, the WTO says the US’s blanket tariffs aren’t a permissible solution under trade agreements the US signed on to starting in 1994.
(Bloomberg) — Stripe Inc. plans to make a one-time payment of $20,000 to employees who opt to move out of San Francisco, New York or Seattle, but also cut their base salary by as much as 10%, according to a person familiar with the matter.The payments processor will make the offer available to workers who choose to relocate before the end of the year, said the person, who asked to remain anonymous to discuss private details. But employees opting to move may have to relinquish some of their base pay.The new policy adds Stripe to the list of technology companies that have expanded opportunities for employees to work remotely while also signaling they may implement pay cuts if workers move to less-expensive cities. VMware Inc. told Bloomberg News on Friday it had instituted such a policy, and Facebook Inc., Twitter Inc. and ServiceNow Inc. have all considered similar measures.Mike Manning, a spokesman for Stripe, declined to comment.For many Americans, the Covid-19 crisis has upended the cost-benefit balance of living in expensive metropolitan areas, which for months have been devoid of their usual flair. With corporate campuses and office buildings still closed or only partially staffed, many companies have given workers more leeway than ever to decide where and how they want to work. That’s led scores of white-collar workers to move closer to loved ones or to more sparsely populated areas with less punishing living costs.Pay cuts and a lesser need for pricey office space offer companies ways to save money. But a migration of workers from downtown headquarters also pose challenges for bosses who worry that remote work over the long term could stifle innovation or hamper productivity. It will also be financially challenging for coastal hubs that have long attracted large companies and their highly paid employees.Also read: Dimon Sees Lasting Damage If Workers Don’t Return to OfficesFor tax reasons, companies must know where employees reside, but any decisions to cut pay is at their discretion.San Francisco-based Stripe, which employs around 2,800 people, has for years relied on remote work. Last year it formed a remote engineering hub in addition to its hubs in the Bay area, Seattle, Dublin and Singapore, and vowed to hire 100 new fully remote engineers and other staff.Doing so has brought its workers closer to customers and businesses, and tailor products to fit local needs and limitations, Jay Shirley, who is the site lead for Stripe’s remote engineering hub, wrote in a May blog post.The company was valued at $36 billion in it latest funding round, making it one of the country’s most valuable closely held startups.The San Francisco Bay area had the highest prices for goods and services, including rent, among large metropolitan areas in the country in 2018, according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. New York was in second place. Among areas of all sizes, the California cities of San Jose, Sunnyvale and Santa Clara, in the heart of Silicon Valley, had the nation’s highest rents.In a recent poll on Blind, a professional network where users can remain anonymous, 49% of the 5,900 respondents said a relocation shouldn’t prompt a pay cut as long as they’re doing the same work. About 44% said they were willing to make that trade, with the remainder saying they were indifferent.(Updates with Blind survey in final paragraph.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
The coronavirus pandemic crisis dealt a hard blow to the airline industry. Disruptions to trade and travel, social lockdown policies, and increased border restrictions were only the beginning of the troubles. Even though income collapsed, the airlines still had to maintain aircraft and hangars, pay leases on equipment and airport space, and meet their debts.But the virus is starting to wane, and economies are coming back – and travel is starting to resume. The big question for the airlines is how many people are willing to book flights? There is no doubt that the pandemic will have cost the industry some potential passengers, people simply no longer willing to fly, but for many others, travel will remain essential. How the industry will look in 2021 is still not clear, as Morgan Stanley transportation expert Ravi Shanker notes: “While the rising industry tide will lift all boats, we recognize that we are not out of the woods yet and that there is likely to be significant volatility in the next six months as the recovery takes shape.”This does not stop Shanker from rating the airline stocks, nor does it stop him from choosing three tickers that are primed for strong gains as the industry comes back to life. Using TipRanks’ Stock Comparison tool, we were able to evaluate these 3 airline players alongside each other to get a sense of what the analyst community has to say.Southwest Airlines (LUV)First on the list is Southwest Airlines, arguably the best airline operating in the US. Southwest has built its reputation on good customer service, and leveraged that to become the world’s largest budget airline. Its success has made it a long-time component of the S&P 500 index, and brought it 47 consecutive profitable years. The travel restrictions put in place to combat the pandemic hurt the airline badly in 1H20. EPS turned negative in Q1, and the in Q2 the loss reached $2.67 per share despite the partial recovery that started in May and June. That was the bad news. On the positive side, Southwest managed to finish the second quarter with plenty of cash on hand – over $14.5 billion in cash and cash equivalents combined. The company also has over $12 billion in ‘unencumbered assets,’ mostly wholly owned aircraft. The healthy liquidity situation has been a boon to Southwest; of the major American airlines, this is the only one with an investment-grade credit rating.Morgan Stanley’s Shanker believes that Southwest is well-positioned to take off as restrictions ease heading into next year. He writes, “LUV is arguably the highest quality airline in the US… As a largely US domestic medium haul airline, we believe its network is in a sweet spot for a COVID rebound and it has… a loyal customer base.” He adds that the airline is especially “able to capitalize on share gain or M&A opportunities as other airlines falter/lag.”In line with his optimism, Shanker rates LUV an Overweight (i.e. Buy). His $54 price target implies a 33% upside for the stock in the coming year. (To watch Shanker’s track record, click here)With 10 « buy » ratings against just 3 « holds, » LUV shares have earned their Strong Buy consensus rating. The stock is selling for $40.50, and the average price target of $43.80 implies that there is room for 8% upside growth. (See LUV stock analysis on TipRanks)Delta Airlines, Inc. (DAL)The next airline on today’s list is Delta Airlines. Even after the coronavirus hit the industry, Delta’s position among the world’s largest airlines is secure; with $21.5 billion in market cap, $47 billion in total revenue last year, and ranks second in total number of passengers carried, fleet size, and revenue per passenger-mile. The airline routes its flights through nine hubs, with Atlanta being the largest.All of that just goes to show the extent of the hit that the pandemic dealt. Delta reported a net loss per share of $4.43 in Q2, and quarterly revenues of $1.2 billion. The company described the magnitude of the pandemic crisis as “truly staggering.”Fortunately for Delta, the company’s sheer size has given it resources to survive the corona crisis. The company took steps in the spring to improve liquidity, drawing on its $3 billion credit facility in March and, in April, issuing $1.5 billion in senior secured notes and opening an additional $1.5 billion in credit. More recently, Delta announced earlier this month that it will be opening another offer of secured notes and entering a new credit facility, with the two total $6.5 billion. That Delta can contemplate such a move despite the deep recent losses, is testament to the company’s fundamental strength as a leader in an essential industry.Shanker rates Delta as another Overweight (i.e. Buy), writing, “DAL has some of the strongest customer satisfaction numbers among the other Legacy peers… With ample liquidity, we see limited liquidity risk here. Additionally, we continue to see DAL’s international alliances and partnerships as strategic assets…” Shanker describes the airline as “our preferred Legacy carrier.” His $50 price target indicates confidence in a 48.5% one-year upside.Overall, the analyst consensus on Delta is a Moderate Buy, based on 7 review which include 5 Buys and 2 Holds. The stock’s trading price is $32.82; the average price target of $39.17 suggests it has room for 16% upside growth in the next 12 months. (See DAL stock analysis on TipRanks)JetBlue Airways Corporation (JBLU)Last up from out list of Morgan Stanley airline picks is JetBlue, another major name among the budget carriers. JetBlue is the seventh largest US airline, as ranked by passengers carried. The company, before the crisis, operated over 1,000 daily flights to destinations in the US and Latin America.Unsurprisingly, earnings took a hit in the second quarter due to the effects of the pandemic. JetBlue reported a loss of $2.02 per share, on revenues of $215 million. The top line is down 89% since the end of 2019.On some positive notes, JetBlue was the first major US carrier to implement a UV cabin cleaning system in response to the viral pandemic. The company undertook this step back in July, and boasts that it can use the system to clean an airliner cabin in just 10 minutes. And more recently, in response to the scaling back of the crisis, JetBlue announced that it will open 24 additional routes by year’s end. Destinations include Florida and the Caribbean and are scheduled to open in November and December.In his review of this stock, Shanker was impressed by JetBlue’s ability to take early advantage of the travel industry’s gradual reopening. “We like JetBlue’s significant exposure to the ‘Medium Haul’ US domestic market, which we believe is likely to be the first to return. Additionally, JBLU’s ‘snowbird’ network provides a significant upside as leisure travel returns,” the analyst opined. With those advantages in mind, Shanker rated JBLU as Overweight (i.e. Buy), and his $16 price target implies an upside potential of 26% for the year ahead.Overall, Wall Street is still cautious on JetBlue, based on 3 Buy ratings and 5 Holds issued in the past 3 months. With an average price target of $$12.17, the Street anticipates shares to stay range-bound for now. (See JBLU stock analysis on TipRanks)To find good ideas for airline stocks trading at attractive valuations, visit TipRanks’ Best Stocks to Buy, a newly launched tool that unites all of TipRanks’ equity insights.Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the featured analysts. The content is intended to be used for informational purposes only. It is very important to do your own analysis before making any investment.
Hindenburg Research, the short seller that successfully beat down Nikola Corporation (NASDAQ: NKLA) share price by 40%, fired more shots at the beleaguered electric truck startup on Tuesday. Nikola refused to engage amid a report of a possible Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) inquiry.Nikola, which hired crisis communications firm Joele Frank, declined to respond to questions about Hindenburg’s renewed attack or a Bloomberg report quoting unnamed sources that the SEC was investigating Nikola. The SEC declined to comment, spokesman Christopher Carofine wrote in an email to FreightWaves on Tuesday.On Monday, Nikola hinted at an SEC inquiry. It said it had contacted the agency on Friday — a day after the 67-page Hindenburg report was published accusing Nikola of years of lies and deceit. A second Nikola statement issued Monday evening said it welcomed SEC involvement.That was it for Nikola. On Tuesday, it issued a brief statement. « We are not going to comment on rumor or speculation, » Nikola said. « When we have something to disclose, we will. »Founder goes quiet too Operating in crisis mode, Nikola also quieted the social media accounts of founder and Executive Chairman Trevor Milton. He has aggressively and sometimes profanely responded to critics and short sellers on Twitter. His most recent tweet Monday said Nikola’s response to Hindenburg « is out and we are focused on delivering. »Part of Nikola’s challenge even before the Hindenburg allegations was that it is at least a year away from having electric trucks on the road and generating meaningful revenue. That has led to negative posts from detractors, many of them fans of Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA), which became the world’s most valuable automaker with its stock appreciation this year.Nikola and Tesla named their companies for the first and last names of 19th century inventor Nikola Tesla. Nikola became a public company in June following a reverse merger with special purpose acquisition company VectoIQ.Nikola’s business plan calls for battery-electric Nikola Tre cabover models to be produced by the end of 2021 in a joint venture with IVECO, a subsidiary of CNH Industrial N.V. (NYSE: CNHI). The industrial conglomerate invested 0 million in Nikola in September 2019, including the use of the IVECO factory in Ulm, Germany. German-built trucks also will be exported in kits and assembled at a Nikola plant under construction in Coolidge, Arizona. Republic Services (NYSE: RSG) placed a record order in August for 2,500 Tre models to be configured as refuse haulers. Nikola plans to build hydrogen-powered Class 8 trucks in Arizona beginning in 2023. It claims 14,000 orders for those trucks worth $10 billion in revenue. But none of the orders are binding.The GM deal A week ago, Nikola and General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) said GM would become an 11% owner in Nikola and build the Badger electric pickup truck on the same platform as a coming GM electric pickup. GM also will provide its Ultium batteries and Hydrotec fuel cells for Nikola’s Class 8 trucks. Nikola shares rose more than 40% on the day of the announcement. By Monday, shares retreated as low as the upper $20s before recovering to close at $35.79.GM CEO Mary Barra said Monday GM did all due diligence on the Nikola deal, rebutting Hindenberg’s claim that GM « did not do its homework. »Nikola shares traded more than 7% lower on Tuesday afternoon.Renewing the attack Following Nikola’s partial rebuttal of its allegations on Monday, Hindenburg called the response « a tacit admission of securities fraud. » »We included 53 questions at the end of our report that we believe shareholders deserve answers to, » Hindenburg said on its website Tuesday. « The company promised a full point-by-point rebuttal, but then only responded to 10 of our questions. »Nikola’s response appeared to cover 15 of Hindenburg’s claims, dismissing the rest. One that has gotten significant attention involved whether a fuel cell prototype Nikola showed in 2017 could run under its own power. Milton claimed it could. But Hindenburg followed up on a Bloomberg story in June. Both pointed to misleading statements by Milton.MIlton was so incensed by the Bloomberg report that he threatened to sue reporter Ed Ludlow and banned Bloomberg from future Nikola activities. Whether a suit was ever filed is unclear. Ludlow has participated in Nikola online media events since his story.Nikola claimed it never said the prototype moved under its own power and that a television ad showing it moving never claimed it was running independently. Hindenburg said the truck was a « pusher » and was filmed descending a grade that gave the impression it was running. »It was never described as ‘under its own propulsion’ or ‘powertrain driven,' » Nikola, said on Monday. Nikola, which was a private company at the time, said investors at the time knew the capabilities of the prototype. It called the 3-year-old video « irrelevant except for the fact that the short seller is trying to use it for its main thesis. »Giving and buying shares After contacting the SEC on Friday, Nikola suggested its proactivity could make the SEC an ally. A Bloomberg report published after the market closed Monday quoted unnamed sources saying the agency was looking into the matter, adding that nothing could come of it.Milton hated the Hindenburg attack, which he called a « hit job. » But he responded to the freefall in share price by purchasing 41,400 shares in four transactions on Monday at prices ranging from $30.10 to $33.59, according to an SEC S-4 filing. On Aug. 26, Milton gave 6 million of his personal shares to longtime employees. He followed up last week by giving 1 million personal shares to 350 current employees with the only stipulation that they stay at the company for three years.Related articles: Nikola rebuts short seller’s screed, shares reboundShort seller publishes blistering takedown of NikolaMinting millionaires and building buzz at NikolaClick for more FreightWaves articles by Alan Adler.Latest Ratings for NKLA DateFirmActionFromTo Sep 2020RBC CapitalMaintainsSector Perform Aug 2020WedbushInitiates Coverage OnNeutral Aug 2020WedbushInitiates Coverage OnNeutral View More Analyst Ratings for NKLA View the Latest Analyst Ratings See more from Benzinga * Nikola Rebuts Short Seller’s Screed, Share Price Rebounds * Behind The Scenes: How The GM-Nikola Tie-up Came Together * GM Will Supply Batteries And Fuel Cells For Nikola Electric Trucks(C) 2020 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.
The electric vehicle pioneer’s shares are up again in premarket trading Tuesday, leaving investors wondering what is driving the stock this week. One possible answer: the Tesla app.
‘What would happen if I end up paying off their home, and they want to sell it, or my in-laws decide to give their share of the house to my husband’s sister?’
So far, September has been a wild ride of ups and downs. Following the recent bout of volatility, stocks have ticked higher again. But as uncertainty regarding another rescue program and the presidential election continues to linger, where does the market go from here? Weighing in for Oppenheimer, Chief Investment Strategist John Stoltzfus argues that any market dips appear “relatively contained and orderly,” and present longer-term investors the chance to find “babies that got thrown out with the bathwater.” He noted, “For nervous investors the recent downdraft has presented opportunity to take some profits without FOMO (fear of missing out).”As for the tech heavyweights that powered the market’s five-month charge forward, the strategist believes “current expectations that technology stocks will remain under pressure for some time seem exaggerated.” Stoltzfus adds that the “core of technology stocks did not appear terribly rich in price considering that developments in technology and innovation have yet to show signs of plateauing in the current cycle.”Taking Stoltzfus’ outlook into consideration, our focus turned to stocks that Oppenheimer analysts are bullish on. The firm’s pros see triple-digit upside potential in store for three tickers in particular. Running the names through TipRanks’ database, we wanted to find out what makes each so compelling.MediWound Ltd. (MDWD)Developing cutting-edge products, MediWound wants to address unmet needs in the fields of severe burn and chronic wound management. With an important government contract secured, Oppenheimer has high hopes for this name.Back in January, MDWD announced that the U.S. Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) had entered into a contract to procure $16.5 million of NexoBrid, its drug designed to remove eschar in adults with deep partial and full-thickness thermal burns (a process called debridement), for an emergency stockpile. According to management, the first delivery is set for Q3 2020.On top of this, the company filed the NexoBrid Biologics License Application (BLA) with the FDA for eschar removal in adults with deep partial-thickness and full-thickness thermal burns in June. MDWD’s U.S. commercial partner, Vericel, is preparing for an immediate launch upon approval.Representing Oppenheimer, 5-star analyst Kevin DeGeeter points out that “Given the filing involved participation from three parties—MDWD, U.S. commercial partner Vericel and funding partners at BARDA—and was completed against the backdrop of public sector work-from-home mandates, we view meeting stated timelines as a material milestone and derisking event for MDWD shares… we believe NexoBrid is on track for 1H21 launch.”Should the therapy ultimately be approved, MDWD is entitled to a $7.5 million milestone payment from Vericel. “We believe the combination of existing cash and the $7.5 million milestone payment from VCEL upon NexoBrid approval should fund operations at least into 2H23,” DeGeeter added.DeGeeter also points out that MDWD plans to open 25-30 sites in U.S. and Israel to support the Phase 2 study of EscharEx, its product for chronic wounds. Although COVID-19 resulted in a delay, the analyst thinks “the current timeline of 1H21 is achievable.”To this end, DeGeeter rates MDWD an Outperform along with a $7 price target. Should his thesis play out, a potential twelve-month gain of 117% could be in the cards. (To watch DeGeeter’s track record, click here)All in all, other analysts echo DeGeeter’s sentiment. 4 Buys and no Holds or Sells add up to a Strong Buy consensus rating. With an average price target of $6.63, the upside potential comes in at 106%. (See MDWD stock analysis on TipRanks)UroGen Pharma (URGN)Primarily focused on uro-oncology, UroGen Pharma develops advanced non-surgical treatments to improve the lives of patients. As the launch of one of its products is progressing well, Oppenheimer thinks that now is the time to get on board.Writing for the firm, analyst Leland Gershell points to UGN-101 as a key component of his bullish thesis. UGN-101, which has now been formally launched in the U.S. under the commercial name Jelmyto, was designed as a treatment for low-grade upper tract urothelial carcinoma (LG UTUC). The analyst highlights that Jelmyto’s launch is already off to a solid start, as eight patients had received 20 doses of the drug in June.“Jelmyto sales were $371,000 in its first month of launch, but more important was management’s commentary that over 100 urology practice sites are treatment-ready for the product, and that patient demand has not been visibly impacted by COVID-19,” Gershell explained.Adding to the good news, permanent C- and J-codes, which are expected in October and January 2021, respectively, could bolster sales, in Gershell’s opinion. The label could also be updated to reflect completed OLYMPUS data.It should be noted that patient and physician engagement could remain diminished through YE20, and restrictions around elective surgeries could persist, according to Gershell. That said, he argues that “LG UTUC’s lack of surgical urgency could imply treatment deferral for several months, whereas Jelmyto’s ability to be administered in an outpatient setting could expedite treatment, favoring adoption.”If that wasn’t enough, UGN-102, its mitomycin gel that targets low-grade intermediate risk non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (LG IR-NMIBC), is set to enter pivotal testing before the end of 2020. Looking at previously released data, the therapy achieved a 65% complete response (CR) rate at three months following onset of treatment. “To offset any potential COVID-19 impact on enrollment, URGN has increased the number of clinical trial sites outside of the U.S., in those countries where virus-related clinical delays have not cropped up,”Gershell added.Summing it all up, Gershell commented, “We believe shares trade at a discount to the value of Jelmyto and UGN-102, and that revenue growth will support stock upside over the next 12 months.”To this end, Gershell stands with the bulls, reiterating an Outperform rating. At $48, his price target brings the upside potential to 123%. (To watch Gershell’s track record, click here)What does the rest of the Street have to say? 3 Buy ratings and 1 Hold have been issued in the last three months. As a result, URGN receives a Strong Buy consensus rating. In addition, the $44 average price target suggests 104% upside potential. (See URGN stock analysis on TipRanks)Ayala Pharmaceuticals Inc. (AYLA)Last but not least we have Ayala Pharmaceuticals, which is focused on developing targeted therapies for cancers in which Notch activation is a known tumor driver. Based on the progress across its development pipeline, Oppenheimer sees big gains in store.Oppenheimer analyst Jay Olson thinks AYLA’s technology makes it a stand-out. Its two candidates, AL101 and AL102, which are in-licensed from Bristol Myers, are gamma-secretase inhibitors that target aberrant activation of Notch signaling in cancer cells.Notch signaling plays an important role in normal cell development, and perturbations can cause malignant transformation. “We believe Notch targeted therapies hold promise in addressing unmet clinical needs,” Olson commented.The analyst added, “The Notch mutational landscape is diverse, and the underlying science is evolving. AYLA is building a bioinformatics database around Notch to better characterize and identify Notch-activating mutations. Additionally, AYLA is collaborating with partners developing diagnostic tests for Notch-activating mutations, both at DNA and RNA levels. We believe these initiatives benefit AYLA in the long term by identifying responders and expanding the addressable patient population.”Despite the challenges presented by COVID-19, critical catalysts remain on track. The company is set to present new interim data from the Phase 2 ACCURACY open-label study of AL101 in R/M ACC at the mini oral head and neck cancer section of ESMO. Looking at the available data, a recent interim analysis in one cohort showed 69% DCR.As for the second cohort, it is evaluating a 6mg once-weekly dosing of AL101. “We view the efficacy and safety data from the 6mg dosing cohort as important for the registration-enabling studies, and we anticipate similar interim data readout in 1H21,” Olson said.Adding to the good news, AYLA is on track to kick off patient dosing in the Phase 2 TENACITY study of AL101 in R/M TNBC by YE20 after the IND was cleared by the FDA in April. In 2021, AYLA plans to initiate two additional Phase 2 studies including AL102 for desmoid tumors and AL101 for r/r T-ALL.“Springworks Therapeutics recently announced the completion of patient enrollment of the Phase 3 DeFi trial of nirogacestat in desmoid tumors with topline data expected mid-2021, which should provide read-across to AYLA’s AL102 program,” Olson noted.Given all of the above, Olson opined, “We’re encouraged by AYLA’s advantages along several dimensions, including its drug candidates, cancer indication selection, and focus on identifying Notch-activating mutations while developing diagnostics. AYLA’s Notch targeted approach should address unmet clinical needs for patients with rare but aggressive cancers.”It should come as no surprise, then, that Olson stayed with the bulls. To this end, he kept an Outperform rating and $23 price target on the stock, implying 123% upside potential. (To watch Olson’s track record, click here)Looking at the consensus breakdown, 2 Buys and 1 Hold have been published in the last three months. Therefore, AYLA gets a Moderate Buy consensus rating. Based on the $19.83 average price target, shares could climb 92% higher in the next year. (See AYLA stock analysis on TipRanks)To find good ideas for stocks trading at attractive valuations, visit TipRanks’ Best Stocks to Buy, a newly launched tool that unites all of TipRanks’ equity insights.Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the featured analysts. The content is intended to be used for informational purposes only. It is very important to do your own analysis before making any investment.
Not that long ago my charitable trust, Action Alerts PLUS, had a pretty big position in Citigroup . Plus the key regulatory test, the Fed’s CCAR, or Comprehensive Capital Analysis and Review, gave Citigroup the best report of all the majors.
(Bloomberg) — Snowflake Inc. is riding a wave of enthusiasm leading to its public offering Wednesday, highlighting optimism that the cloud-computing company can more than hold its own against the technology industry’s toughest rivals.The San Mateo, California-based company, founded in 2012, is seen as a market leader in a key product area dominated by Amazon.com Inc., the top provider of public cloud storage and services. The software maker has also generated blockbuster revenue growth and customer loyalty, according to a regulatory filing.Snowflake bumped its IPO price range to $100 to $110 a share from $75 to $85, bringing the amount it’s trying to raise to as much as $3.08 billion. The offering could produce a market value of $30 billion for Snowflake, which was last privately valued at about $12.5 billion.The company’s software is like a vacuum sucking up data strewn across in different systems, so that businesses can analyze it all together. The product was built for the cloud era, in which software is delivered over the internet, and Snowflake’s offering is agnostic about where data is stored and where corporate customers want to aggregate it. Clients query that data to understand more about how their businesses are functioning and make better decisions. Snowflake processed an average of 507 million customer queries per day in the month ended July 31, according to the filing.Amazon led the way in creating the market for computing power, storage and services rented by businesses, helping them avoid running their own data centers. Analysts said the capabilities and flexibility of Snowflake’s product make it more advanced than the competing data warehouse, called Redshift, from Amazon Web Services, which explains the smaller company’s torrid growth rates.“It’s a rapidly evolving competitive landscape,” Zane Chrane, an analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein, said in an interview. “AWS Redshift probably has the largest cloud data warehouse, with the most customers and revenue, but it’s the oldest. Snowflake has been one of the most disruptive new vendors in the enterprise space in the last few years.”In the fiscal year that ended Jan. 31, Snowflake’s revenue soared 174% to $264.7 million compared with the previous fiscal year, the company reported. In the sixth months that ended July 31, sales were $242 million, a 133% year-over-year increase.These lofty figures have excited investors looking for pandemic-proof securities. Berkshire Hathaway Inc. and Salesforce.com Inc. both snapped up stakes in Snowflake in private placements concurrent with the public offering.Snowflake also competes against, and partners with, Microsoft Corp. and Alphabet Inc.’s Google Cloud Platform. The company was founded by Benoit Dageville, Thierry Cruanes and Marcin Zukowski. A longtime Microsoft executive, Bob Muglia, led the startup for five years before being replaced by Frank Slootman in April 2019. The board wanted a leader with more operational experience and a strong plan to go after larger customers, according to a person familiar with the situation who asked not to be identified discussing personnel decisions. Slootman had been chief executive officer of ServiceNow Inc. and Data Domain Inc. when those tech companies went public. A spokeswoman for Snowflake declined to comment.The Dutch-born Slootman often touts Snowflake’s competitive prowess, saying that it has replaced AWS “thousands of times.”“It’s an extremely compelling product that we have,” he said in a December interview.Mandeep Singh, an analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence, said Wall Street is poised to richly value Snowflake partially because of confidence that Slootman can effectively navigate a $70 billion market.“Frank gives Snowflake so much credibility,” Singh said in an interview. “He has been there, done that with ServiceNow. The market is willing to pay a rich premium for cloud companies that have a defensible moat and sustainable market.” Shares may hit $150 when trading begins on the New York Stock Exchange, Singh added.Slootman has focused on landing very large clients. The software maker has recently been reaching eight- and nine-figure deals, said the person familiar with the situation. Snowflake’s contract with Capital One Financial Corp. was valued around $100 million, the person added.In December, on the sidelines of an AWS conference, Slootman recounted his conversations with Andy Jassy, the Amazon division’s CEO.“When I talk to Andy, he’s like, ‘It’s a big market, let’s be civil’ and I think he’s right,” Slootman said. “He said, you know, ‘You guys make us better’ and there’s no doubt.”For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Shares of Carnival Corp. dropped Tuesday, helping drag down its peers’ stocks, after the cruise operator disclosed plans for a $1 billion stock offering and for accelerated capacity reductions, as it deals with the negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on its operations.
Shares of Citigroup (ticker: C) were down nearly 7% Tuesday, following a nearly 6% drop on Monday after The Wall Street Journal reported that the bank could face a consent order from the Federal Reserve and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency for inadequate risk management controls. Last month Citigroup erroneously sent a $900 million payment to (REV)’s creditors—the type of mistake that was the result of manual processes, which are being upgraded, Citigroup’s chief financial officer Mark Mason said at a conference Monday. Then, last week, Citigroup announced that chief executive Michael Corbat would be retiring in February and that Jane Fraser, currently the bank’s president, would be taking the top spot.
Compass Pathways expects its IPO to price at $14-$16 a share, potentially giving it a valuation of as much as $544 million.
Microsoft Corp. announced it will raise its dividend about 10% Tuesday, to 56 cents a share from 51 cents a share. Microsoft shares were up about 0.5% in after-hours trading following the announcement. The stock received a bigger boost last week, when Morgan Stanley analyst Keith Weiss predicted the tech giant would increase its dividend by 10% or more in the coming days to push its implied dividend yield back above 1%. Microsoft also disclosed that it will hold a virtual annual shareholders meeting on Dec. 2. Microsoft shares closed with a 1.6% gain in Tuesday’s regular session at $208.78, giving it a market capitalization of $1.55 trillion. Shares have returned 33.4% so far in 2020, while the S&P 500 index has returned 6.2%.
NextEra Energy, a utility company, announced a four-for-one split, and increased its guidance. Its stock is climbing.
Long-ailing Ford faces new coronavirus challenges with demand and supply chains. But is Ford primed for a comeback? Here’s what you should know.
Whatever your opinion on EV truck maker Nikola (NKLA), boring is one description that cannot be attached to the company and its assorted shenanigans.After inking a credibility boosting deal with auto giant General Motors last week, the bears came out dancing, after a withering report from Hindenburg Research accused the company of fraudulent activites. The euphoria was replaced by alarm as reflected by the stock’s steep decline. It now turns out the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is looking into the allegations, which no doubt will further fan the flames of controversy surrounding Nikola and headline grabbing founder Trevor Milton.Wedbush analyst Daniel Ives, however, stands up in Nikola’s defense.“While we look forward to management addressing some of these issues, we continue to believe seeing the forest through the trees that Nikola is a story stock now and it’s all about execution looking ahead through 2023,” Ives said. “If Trevor and the team can successfully build out its Arizona factory, morph prototypes into models (both on Badger and trucking front), lay the groundwork for its charging network, and catalyze delivery trucking orders with an attractive gross margin structure, then the opportunity for NKLA is massive and the stock will reflect this dynamic.”While admitting there is “much wood to chop” for Nikola to prove its doubters wrong, the analyst also believes the GM deal is a “huge shot in the arm” and gives credence to the company’s stated mission to “transform the transportation/trucking industry by offering both pure electric and hydrogen electric powertrains.”However, Ives stops short from recommending investors pile in just yet, calling Nikola a “prove me” stock. To this end, Ives rates NKLA a neutral (i.e Hold) along with a $45 price target. Still, there’s room for 37% of upside from current levels, should Ives’ target materialize over the following months. (To watch Ives’ track record, click here)So, that’s the Wedbush view, what do other Street analysts currently think of Nikola’s prospects? The stock has 2 Buy recommendations and 3 additional Holds which add up to a Moderate Buy consensus rating. With a $55 average price target, the analysts forecast shares appreciating by 55% in the year ahead. (See Nikola stock analysis on TipRanks)To find good ideas for stocks trading at attractive valuations, visit TipRanks’ Best Stocks to Buy, a newly launched tool that unites all of TipRanks’ equity insights.Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the featured analyst. The content is intended to be used for informational purposes only. It is very important to do your own analysis before making any investment.
Federal Reserve System, Judy Shelton, United States Senate, Republican Party, Donald Trump, John Thune, Candidate
Actu monde – GB – Fed nominee Shelton doesn’t yet have Senate support, Thune says