Good morning. Here’s what you need to know.
Pfizer is buying Allergan for over $US160 billion. Pharmaceutical giants Pfizer and Allergan will combine to form a $US160 billion global drug behemoth. Allergan shareholders will be receiving $US363.63 worth of Pfizer stock as payment. Specifically, for each share of Allergan, investors will receive 11.3 shares (based on the Pfizer’s November 20 closing price of $US32.18) of the new combined company. Importantly, the combined businesses will be renamed Pfizer plc, but legally will be combined under Allergan plc. This means that the combined company will officially be domiciled in Ireland.
Argentina elected a conservative president that could turn the country on its head. “Conservative challenger Mauricio Macri turned Argentine politics on its head on Sunday, kicking the ruling Peronist movement out of power with a promise to liberalize the ailing economy and end a culture of divisive politics,” Reuters’ Richard Lough reported. “Macri, who served two terms as mayor of Buenos Aires, has promised to dismantle a web of currency controls and trade restrictions that have deterred investors and hobbled growth. Policy changes such as eliminating hefty taxes on grains exports and revamping economic data long viewed as manipulated by Fernandez’s government will be quick hits to underscore his intent to bring change.”
Venezuela sees $US20 oil happening. Venezuelan oil minister Eulogio del Pino warned that OPEC should not allow an oil price war to occur and that they must act to stabilise the crude market soon. When asked how low oil prices could go in 2016 if OPEC doesn’t change its policy, he said: “Mid-20s.”
Fed’s Williams sees ‘strong case’ for hiking rates in December. “Assuming that we continue to get good data on the economy, continue to get signs that we are moving closer to achieving our goals and gaining confidence getting back to 2-per cent inflation… If that continues to happen there’s a strong case to be made in December to raise rates,” San Francisco Fed President John Williams said on Saturday.
CVC and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board are about to buy Petco. “Private equity firm CVC Capital Partners Ltd and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) are nearing a deal to acquire Petco Animal Supplies Inc, valuing it at around $US4.7 billion, including debt, according to people familiar with the matter,” Reuters’ Lauren Hirsch and Greg Roumeliotis report.
The head of a major Chinese brokerage has vanished. From AFP: “Shares in Guotai Junan International dived Monday after the major Chinese brokerage said it could not find its Hong Kong chief, at a time when Beijing is targeting the financial sector in an anti-graft campaign. Shares in the Hong Kong-listed firm, a subsidiary of Guotai Junan Securities, dropped more than 15 per cent at one point after the company said it had not been able to locate its chairman Yim Fung since Wednesday. ‘The company has been unable to reach Dr. Yim Fung, Chairman of the Board… since 18 November 2015,’ the company said in a statement filed to the stock exchange.”
A Swiss bank is about to charge customers a negative interest rate. “The Alternative Bank Schweiz (ABS) caused shockwaves with a letter sent to all clients in mid-October informing them that it would begin imposing interest charges on deposits in 2016,” AFP’s Nathalie Olof-Ors reported. “For current accounts, the bank said it would impose a -0.125-per cent rate, while slapping a -0.75-per cent rate on client deposits higher than 100,000 Swiss francs ($US98,650, 92,420 euros).”
Berkeley professor thinks the Fed leaks secrets regularly. “[University of California Berkeley professor Annette] Vissing-Jorgensen and her colleagues found that the stock market delivers better returns versus Treasury bills the second, fourth, and sixth weeks after each of the Fed’s eight policy-setting meetings during a given year,” Reuters’ Ann Saphir reported. “During odd weeks, returns are poor, they found.”
Markets aren’t doing much. US futures are flat with Dow futures up 10 points and S&P futures down 0.25 points. In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei closed up 0.1% while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng slipped 0.4%. Europe is modestly in the red with Britain’s FTSE 100 down 0.2%, Germany’s DAX flat, and France’s CAC 40 down 0.4%.
Economic data on deck. At 9:45 a.m. ET, we’ll get Markit’s preliminary estimate of its US manufacturing PMI for November. That will be followed by October existing home sales at 10:00 a.m. ET.
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