Johnson & Johnson, Nike, Illumina: Stocks That Defined the Week
By Derek Hall
Johnson & Johnson
The race to be first with a coronavirus cure is in its last
stretch. Johnson & Johnson's experimental Covid-19 vaccine
became the fourth to enter final-stage testing in the U.S.
Wednesday. The one-dose shot could lead to a government authorized
vaccine by early next year if the trial yields positive results,
the company said. Moderna Inc. and Pfizer Inc. each began Phase 3
trials for their respective vaccine candidates in July. And
AstraZeneca PLC entered final-stage testing in August for a vaccine
it licensed from the University of Oxford. Johnson & Johnson
shares added 0.2% Wednesday.
Nikola might need a jump-start after another tumultuous week in
what has already been a rocky month for the electric-truck maker.
The company said Monday its founder and executive chairman, Trevor
Milton, would be leaving amid allegations he misled investors.
Short seller Hindenburg Research published a report earlier this
month that called Nikola an "intricate fraud" and accused Mr.
Milton of making exaggerated claims about the company's technology,
allegations that Nikola has disputed. U.S. securities regulators
and the Justice Department are investigating similar allegations
related to public statements the company has made. Nikola shares
fell 19% Monday.
A jump in digital sales helped Nike outrun its earlier
coronavirus slump. The sportswear company reported flat quarterly
revenue Tuesday, a turnaround from the pandemic plunge in its
spring quarter. The sneaker giant posted a stronger than expected
summer thanks largely to an 82% increase in digital sales that
offset declining revenue at traditional stores. Athletic apparel
makers have reported an increase in demand for clothing and casual
attire as more people work and exercise at home amid the pandemic.
Nike shares rose 8.8% Wednesday.
Illumina said Monday that it will buy Grail Inc., a company the
gene sequencer founded four years ago. It already owns a large
stake in the company and plans to pay $7.1 billion in cash and
stock to purchase the rest. The acquisition will be Illumina's
biggest and push it further into the clinical applications of its
gene sequencers and related products and services. With the
purchase, Illumina will own a developer of a blood test that
promises early cancer detection, and the deal's success will depend
on successfully launching the test and persuading insurers to pay
for it. Illumina shares fell 8.6% Monday.
Wells Fargo & Co.
Wells Fargo Chief Executive Charlie Scharf apologized for
remarks he made about recruiting Black talent after those comments
triggered a backlash. In a June 16 memo he said "the unfortunate
reality is that there is a very limited pool of Black talent to
recruit from with this specific experience." After that memo
surfaced, Mr. Scharf told employees in a Wednesday letter that his
comment was misinterpreted but acknowledged it was insensitive and
reflected his unconscious bias. Shares of Wells Fargo fell 3.5%
E.W. Scripps Co.
E.W. Scripps investors cheered the arrival of the Oracle of
Omaha on Thursday. The broadcasting company agreed to buy ION Media
for $2.65 billion with the backing of Warren Buffett's Berkshire
Hathaway Inc., which plans to make a $600 million preferred-equity
investment in Scripps. The purchase of ION will roughly double
Scripps's television station footprint and allow the company to
reach viewers without hefty leasing payments. Scripps agreed to
sell its podcasting unit Stitcher in July and has exited newspapers
and radio in recent years, shifting its focus to TV. E.W. Scripps
shares gained 7.6% Thursday.
Boeing's board faces accusations of failing to properly oversee
management's response to two fatal 737 max crashes and the plane's
safety problems. New York and Colorado public pension funds made
the accusations in a lawsuit filed earlier this month in a Delaware
state court. In a heavily redacted complaint, the Boeing
shareholders accused former Chief Executive Dennis Muilenburg of
misleading what plaintiffs say was a largely passive board. A
Boeing spokesman said the company believes the suit lacks merit and
will seek to have it dismissed later this year. Boeing shares added
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
September 25, 2020 19:32 ET (23:32 GMT)
Copyright (c) 2020 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
Historical Stock Chart
From Sep 2020 to Oct 2020
Historical Stock Chart
From Oct 2019 to Oct 2020