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GLOBAL MARKETS LIVE: Aldi purchases Leader Price, Apple limits iPhone purchases…

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03/20/2020 | 09:45am EDT

Corporate activity updates around the coronavirus are legion. The crisis will probably not prevent LVMH from buying out Tiffany, while Aldi has signed the purchase of 567 Leader Price stores from Casino. There is also talk of share buybacks and rationing of iPhones.

Tesla was down 8% after announcing the suspension of production at the Fremont, California plant from March 24, as California authorities concerned about the spread of the coronavirus. In addition, vehicle registrations of the American manufacturer in China fell by 35% over one month in February, Reuters reports.

Netflix plays the game. Netflix has reduced speeds on all its flows in Europe for 30 days to ease the pressure on the Internet, estimating that "this will reduce Netflix's traffic on European networks by around 25% while ensuring a good quality service". "Mr Hastings has shown a great sense of responsibility and solidarity," said Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton, praising the responsiveness of the Netflix boss. Breton had called on streaming platforms to make efforts to free up bandwidth.

The rationed iPhone. Apple limits online purchases of iPhones to two terminals per person on its store, especially in China and the United States, to avoid the creation of a parallel market (this was the case in 2007 when the first iPhone was launched). The group thus seems to want to avoid the resale of higher-priced handsets. The group has closed its physical stores around the world, except in China where they have reopened.

Jewelry sales. LVMH could buy Tiffany shares on a run-of-the-mill basis, according to Bloomberg, with the green light from the American's board of directors, a green light that could come today. LVMH had launched a friendly takeover bid after sealing a deal in November. The American jeweler's share was trading Thursday at around USD 126.50, while the purchase price proposed by the French group and validated by the board of directors of his target is USD 135.

Okay for Danaher. The European Commission and the U.S. Federal Trade Commission have approved the acquisition of certain Danaher assets by Sartorius, the majority shareholder of Sartorius Stedim Biotech, for €825 million. Approximately one-third of this amount relates to the assets that will join SSB, which generate approximately $100 million in annual revenues.

The aftermath of Covid-19: The Republicans have introduced a bill in the US Senate allowing $58 billion in guaranteed loans to airlines, after the call for help from carriers such as American Airlines, Delta Air Lines and United Airlines. Air Canada will cut 5100 jobs because of the consequences of the coronavirus. Volvo is abandoning its plan for an exceptional dividend, given the circumstances. Altria's boss, Howard Willard, has contracted the coronavirus. Implenia is restricting activities on its construction sites. The German catering chain Vapiano files for bankruptcy.  Inditex is going to put 25,000 Spanish employees on short-time work.

Still in turmoil. Boeing is considering suspending its dividend and is expected to cut jobs at its American sites, according to the Wall Street Journal. The group also announced on Thursday the resignation of Nikki Haley, Donald Trump's former ambassador to the United Nations, from its board of directors, who opposed the company's request for a public bailout.

End of takeovers. Many companies are halting their share buybacks, as a means of mechanically improving shareholder remuneration for companies that are unsure what to do with their cash. In the coming months, we will probably talk again about the billions spent in recent years on these programs by certain sectors. Let's go, at random, to the U.S. airlines. When they have been rescued from the public purse (and they will be), the question will arise as to whether the cash would not have been better used elsewhere.

In short elsewhere. TUI AG's debt goes from Ba3 to B2 at Moody's, two notches below the investment grade. AMS AG wants to finalize the acquisition of Osram in the second quarter and confirms its forecast. Roland Busch will take over the management of Siemens from Joe Kaeser by February 2021. Jack Ma, the billionaire founder of Alibaba, will donate large amounts of medical equipment to four Southeast Asian countries through his foundations. Hertz and Avis want to be part of the rescue package for Washington's tourism sector.

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
AIR CANADA 0.30% 16.76 Delayed Quote.-65.45%
ALIBABA GROUP HOLDING -5.87% 199.7 Delayed Quote.-5.85%
ALTRIA GROUP, INC. 0.51% 37.73 Delayed Quote.-24.40%
AMERICAN AIRLINES GROUP INC. -1.77% 9.7 Delayed Quote.-66.18%
APPLE INC. 0.55% 318.89 Delayed Quote.8.60%
BOEING COMPANY (THE) -1.06% 137.53 Delayed Quote.-57.78%
DANAHER CORPORATION 0.38% 158.26 Delayed Quote.3.11%
DELTA AIR LINES, INC. -2.03% 22.69 Delayed Quote.-61.20%
HERTZ GLOBAL HOLDINGS, INC. -7.49% 2.84 Delayed Quote.-81.97%
IMPLENIA AG 3.56% 37.8 Delayed Quote.-7.03%
INDUSTRIA DE DISEÑO TEXTIL, S.A. 1.73% 23.55 End-of-day quote.-25.12%
INTUIT INC. -0.82% 287.61 Delayed Quote.9.80%
LVMH MOËT HENNESSY - LOUIS VUITTON SE 1.86% 368.7 Real-time Quote.-12.61%
NETFLIX, INC. -1.61% 429.32 Delayed Quote.32.68%
OSRAM LICHT AG -0.31% 39 Delayed Quote.-11.39%
SARTORIUS STEDIM BIOTECH 0.24% 248.8 Real-time Quote.68.04%
SIEMENS AG 1.47% 97.29 Delayed Quote.-17.64%
SKANDINAVISKA ENSKILDA BANKEN AB 2.30% 77.48 Delayed Quote.-14.01%
TESLA, INC. -1.28% 816.88 Delayed Quote.95.27%
TUI AG 11.25% 4.338 Delayed Quote.-65.78%
UNITED AIRLINES HOLDINGS, INC. -1.63% 25.4 Delayed Quote.-71.17%
VAPIANO SE -2.17% 0.72 Delayed Quote.-79.27%
VOLVO 3.12% 134.1 Delayed Quote.-17.14%
WORLD CO., LTD. 4.97% 1393 End-of-day quote.-48.23%

Romain Fournier
© MarketScreener.com 2020
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