Here is what you need to know.
Valeant is holding an investor call to defend itself. Valeant Pharmaceuticals is holding an investor call at 8 a.m. ET to discuss its specialty pharmacies that distribute drugs directly to customers at a discounted rate. On Wednesday, Citron Research accused Valeant of accounting fraud, suggesting it was booking sales that never occurred. Valeant’s stock is down 13% in pre-market trade.
GM and UAW have likely avoided a strike. The Detroit Free Press reports, General Motors and the United Auto Workers have tentatively agreed to a four-year deal that will see wages very similar to the deal ratified by Fiat Chrysler on Thursday. The deal allows for “significant wage gains and job security commitments” with top pay hitting $US29 within eight years. According to the Free Press, the contract will pay workers as much as $US10 more per hour than some competitors. Union leaders are expected to vote on the deal on Wednesday.
Teslas sales numbers from China are out. Tesla sold 1,345 units in China during the three months ended September. Bloomberg reports, the results were the strongest ever for the third quarter. Tesla has seen steady sales growth throughout the year, registering sales of 797 units in the first quarter and 883 units in the second quarter, according to Bloomberg. Recently, Elon Musk suggested sales in China will match the US in the next half-decade, or so.
Starwood Capital bought a bunch of apartments from EQR. The Wall Street Journal reports Sam Zell’s Equity Residential is selling more than 23,000 apartments to Starwood Capital for $US5.4 billion. According to the WSJ, the deal is the largest for Zell since 2012, and clears about 25% of Equity Residentials’ inventory of apartments. This marks the second major housing deal in a week. On Tuesday, Blackstone announced it was buying Manhattan’s
Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village for $US5.3 billion.
Gas prices fell further. The latest Lundberg Survey showed gas prices fell 10.5 cents during the two weeks from October 9 to October 23. According to Reuters, gas prices are down nearly $US1 per gallon from a year ago. The drop in prices comes amid a continued buildup in inventories and the stronger US dollar. In the lower 48 states, Charleston, South Carolina had the cheapest gas at $US1.85 per gallon while Los Angeles had the most expensive at $US2.87 per gallon.
German business confidence slipped. The Germany Ifo Business Climate Survey dipped to 108.2 in October from 108.5 in September, outpacing the 108.1 that was anticipated. The survey found the Volkswagen emissions scandal had little impact as confidence in the automotive sector gained for the month. According to Ifo, “Assessments of the current business situation and business expectations both improved.” The euro is up 0.1% at 1.1032.
Poland’s center-left lost in the parliamentary election. Poland’s nationalist and conservative party, Law and Justice, won the parliamentary election five months after taking the presidency. The results were a blow the the center-left with exit polls suggesting it was completely shut out of parliament the first time ever. The center-left has not won an election in Poland since 2001. The Polish zlotky is little changed at 3.8640.
Stock markets around the world trade mixed. Japan’s Nikkei (+0.7%) led most markets higher in Asia and France’s CAC (-0.6%) paces the decline in Europe. S&P 500 futures are lower by 3.00 points at 2036.00.
US economic data is light. New home sales will cross the wires at 10 a.m. ET. The US 10-year yield is down 1 basis point at 2.07%.
Earnings reports are moderate. Philips and Xerox are the notables scheduled to report ahead of the opening bell while Cheesecake Factory, Hartford Financial and XL Group highlight the names releasing their quarterly results after markets close.