Bill Ackman also tells CNBC that Allergan's poison-pill defense doesn't make his takeover bid more difficult.» Read More
Stocks ended with solid gains on Monday as investors were encouraged by solid earnings reports and the return of brisk mergers and acquisitions activity. "We definitely had a lot of good news today," said Charles Rotblut, senior market analyst at Zacks.com. "I think we definitely could see the Dow at new highs before the week is over."
Corporate takeovers in the tech sector and earnings news were some of the catalysts behind the most actively traded stocks on Monday.
After a disappointing week for big pharma earnings, Merck and Schering-Plough start the second-half of the sector's reporting season with a bang. Both companies beat the Street on the top and bottom lines. Merck also raised its full-year earnings guidance to boot. And investors love it. Look at the huge move in the Dow component.
Schering-Plough on Monday said second-quarter earnings more than doubled, driven by growing demand for its Zetia and Vytorin cholesterol drugs and its treatments for arthritis and allergies.
Mergers and acquisitions and a generous portion of quarterly earnings along with OPEC news is turning the stock market picture back to the plus side after Friday's selloff, though looming in the background are credit market concerns.
Merck said Monday that quarterly earnings rose 12% on strong demand for its newer vaccines and medicines, and raised its 2007 profit forecast, sending its shares up 4%.
With a couple of exceptions the pharma earnings season has failed to impress Wall Street, so far. Take a look at the one week performance of the Amex Pharmaceutical Index versus the Dow. Next week there's no let-up. Right out of the gate on Monday morning Merck and Schering-Plough report.
Continental Chief Executive Manfred Wennemer will have to play the German card to get key support from German unions to buy conglomerate Siemens' automotive electronics unit VDO.
Pfizer Wednesday reported lower-than-expected quarterly earnings on competition with generics, and said global sales of cholesterol fighter Lipitor fell 13% amid slipping demand for the company's flagship product.
Yesterday, I blogged that you should watch the Lipitor number in Pfizer's earnings report today. Well, the world's biggest drug company, is having major problems with the world's biggest-selling drug. Lipitor sales fell a surprising 25% in the U.S. and 13% worldwide in the second quarter. And the company says for the full year revenue from the cholesterol fighter could be down as much as 5%.
The headline might say, "Johnson & Johnson Beats the Street," but investors are looking behind it and that's what is pushing this Dow component down this morning. For example, JNJ says its topline growth would have been just 3.6% instead of 13% if it had not bought Pfizer's consumer health care business last year for $16.6 billion. JNJ is kind of a three-pronged hybrid: pharma, medical devices and consumer healthcare.
Big contract wins and corporate dealmaking were some of the catalysts behind Monday's most actively traded stocks.
Roche has signed a deal worth up to $1 billion with Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, giving it access to the U.S. firm's skills in the new science of silencing genes to fight disease.
Monster, Merck, Smith & Wesson and more...Investing can be confusing. Luckily, Cramer has mapped out some road rules for all you Home Gamers trying to navigate the jungle that is Wall Street. Think of it as "Mad Money 101" –- some fundamental advice to keep in mind as you play the market. Whether you're a first time investor or a seasoned financier, it's always good to remember the basics.
Stocks closed higher, led by gains in technology and energy shares. Major indexes had fallen earlier in the day after weaker-than-expected durable goods data but then rebounded. "I think a lot of people see setbacks to be bargain time", said Michael Metz of Oppenheimer.
The battle between two drug giants over the cervical cancer vaccine market is heating up. A study being published in the British medical journal, "The Lancet," says GlaxoSmithKline's shot called "Cervarix" may be different from Merck's Gardasil.
Stocks finished lower in a choppy session that was overshadowed by concerns about the housing slowdown and a meltdown in the subprime mortgage industry. "The financials tend to lead the market down and that's what they were doing today," said Robert Albertson, chief strategist at Sandler O'Neill. "I think it goes well beyond subprime. "
The huge auditorium at the McCormick Place Convention Center was packed to the rafters. It was standing room only in the 45-hundred seat theater, although the fire department wouldn't let people stand. The doctors, scientists, and educators at the American Diabetes Association's Annual Meeting came to see the rock stars of their world--Dr. Steven Nissen who wrote the controversial New England Journal of Medicine report questioning the safety of GlaxoSmithKline's Avandia and Dr. Phillip Home who wrote--also in NEJM--the subsequent interim analysis of a GSK-sponsored study that, so far, supports Avandia's safety.
As Congress, the FDA and the drugmakers wrestle with what appear to be impending warnings about the safety of Avandia, investors are wrestling with estimates of the collateral damage to this multi-billion dollar GlaxoSmithKline franchise. Some say it's the next Vioxx and that investors have priced into the stock a high likelihood that GSK will eventually pull the drug from the market. Others compare it to what happened with Pfizer's painkiller Celebrex in the wake of the Vioxx withdrawal.
A federal judge has ordered a third trial in a lawsuit by a woman who blamed Merck's painkiller Vioxx for the heart attack that killed her husband.