Tuesday, 4 Oct 2022

Forge Global Holdings Down 17%

Amended: AutoZone Q4 Results Top Estimates

Automotive replacement parts retailer AutoZone, Inc. (AZO) reported Tuesday that net income for the fourth quarter increased to $810.04 million or $40.51 per share from $785.77 million or $35.72 per share in the year-ago quarter.

Net sales for the quarter grew 8.9 percent to $5.35 billion from $4.91 billion in the same quarter last year.

On average, analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected the company to report earnings of $38.38 per share on revenues of $5.15 billion for the quarter. Analysts’ estimates typically exclude special items.

Domestic same store sales, or sales for stores open at least one year, increased 6.2 percent for the quarter.

Additionally, AutoZone announced today that Doug Brooks is not standing for re-election to the Company’s Board of Directors at the Annual Meeting of Stockholders to be held December 14, 2022.

(Note: Corrects first para to clarify that it is fourth quarter, not third quarter)

U.S. Covid Cases Fall 29% In Last Fortnight

Known coronavirus positive cases in the United States have fallen significantly in the last two weeks, by 29 percent, according to the New York Times’ latest data.

A 6 percent decrease was recorded in Covid casualties in the country during the same period.

With 450 additional deaths reported on Sunday, the total number of people that have lost their lives due to coronavirus infection in the country has risen to 1,053,436, as per Johns Hopkins University’s latest data.

4,710 new infections on the same day took the total U.S. Covid cases to 95,662,304.

New Jersey reported the most number of deaths – 150 – while New York recorded the most cases.

509 additional deaths were reported globally on Sunday, taking the total number of people who have lost their lives due to the pandemic so far to 6,526,738.

93,968,872 people have so far recovered from the disease, the Worldometer tally shows.

U.S. hospitals reported a 12 percent decrease in the number of Covid patients in the last two weeks. The number of I.C.U. admissions due to the worse stage of the viral disease has also fallen by 10 percent.

U.S. Covid hospitalizations fell to 31,794. 3,887 of these patients are admitted in intensive care units.

The nation’s current test positivity rate is 11 percent.

KnowBe4 Confirms Receipt Of $24/share Acquisition Offer From Vista Equity Partners

KnowBe4, Inc. (KNBE), a security awareness training and simulated phishing platform, confirmed on Monday the receipt of a non-binding proposal from Vista Equity Partners to acquire all outstanding shares of the Company for $24 per share in cash. The proposal represents a 39% premium to KnowBe4’s closing price on September 16, 2022.

The Board formed a special committee of the Board, comprised solely of independent directors, to engage with Vista and take other actions that it deems appropriate, with the assistance of independent financial and legal advisors.

The Special Committee will carefully review the Vista proposal and other potential value creation opportunities to determine the course of action that it believes is in the best interests of KnowBe4 and its stockholders.

The proposal was required to be disclosed by Vista under Regulation 13D by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Bluebird Stock Slips 13%

Shares of bluebird bio, Inc. (BLUE) are slipping over 13% on Monday morning despite being up 15% in pre-market trading.

BLUE is currently trading at $5.50, down $0.84 or 13.28%, on the Nasdaq, on a volume of 13.7 million shares, above average volume of 8 million. The stock opened its trading at $6.63 after closing Friday’s trading at $6.34. The stock has traded between $2.87 and $17.85 in the past 52 weeks period.

Last Friday, bluebird bio announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has granted accelerated approval of Skysona (elivaldogene autotemcel), also known as eli-cel, to slow the progression of neurologic dysfunction in boys 4-17 years of age with early, active cerebral adrenoleukodystrophy (CALD).

The company also confirmed that the previous clinical hold on the eli-cel clinical development program has been lifted.

CALD is a rare, progressive, neurodegenerative disease that primarily affects young boys and causes irreversible, devastating neurologic decline, including major functional disabilities such as loss of communication, cortical blindness, requirement for tube feeding, total incontinence, wheelchair dependence, or complete loss of voluntary movement. Nearly half of patients who do not receive treatment die within five years of symptom onset.

FULL SHOW 09/14/2022: Stubbornly high inflation rocks Wall Street

New York (CNN Business)US stocks rebounded from early losses and were up ever so slightly on Monday morning ahead of the Federal Reserve’s two-day policy meeting later this week.

The Dow was up nearly 120 points, or 0.3%, while the Nasdaq Composite and S&P 500 gained 0.1% and 0.2% respectively.
The bond market reached its highest level in 10 years ahead of what is likely to be a decision by the central bank to raise interest rates by another three-quarters of a percentage point this week. The benchmark US 10-year Treasury note reached 3.5%, its highest level since 2011. The two-year Treasury note reached 3.9%, a 15-year high.

    In addition to the Fed meeting, 16 other global central banks, including the Bank of England, are expected to further tighten monetary policy this week.

      Correction: An earlier version of this story misstated the number of years in which the bond market had reached its highest level. It was 10.

      Forge Global Holdings Down 17%

      Forge Global Holdings, Inc. (FRGE) shares are sliding more than 17 percent on Monday morning trade. The shares have been on a decline on reports of analyst downgrades on Friday. The shares were not influenced by any corporate announcements on the day.

      Currently, shares are at $2.93, down 17.46 on a volume of 1,162,487.

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