U.S. Services Index Indicates Modestly Slower Growth In September
Gold Holds Steady Ahead Of Fed Speeches
Gold prices saw marginal gains on Thursday as traders reassessed the path of interest rates. The yield on the 10-year Treasury yield edged up slightly in European trade, offsetting weakness in the dollar index.
Spot gold edged up 0.1 percent to $1,822.90 per ounce, while U.S. gold futures were up 0.10 percent at $1,836.70.
The precious metal looks set to end an eight-session losing streak as a bond selloff abated and the dollar came off from its recent highs after the release of weak U.S. economic data released overnight.
On Wednesday, data showed that U.S. private-sector employers added 89,000 jobs in September, the fewest since January 2021 – helping calm some fears over high interest rates.
A separate report revealed activity in the U.S. services sector slowed in September.
Traders now eye weekly unemployment claims data as well as comments from Fed speakers Barkin, Mester and Kashkari later in the day for further direction.
The more-closely watched U.S nonfarm payrolls report is due on Friday.
Economists expect U.S. employment to increase by 170,000 jobs in September after an increase of 187,000 jobs in August.
The unemployment rate is expected to edge down to 3.7 percent from 3.8 percent.
Neurocrine Biosciences: CAHtalyst Pediatric Study Meets Primary Endpoint – Quick Facts
Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc. (NBIX) reported positive top-line data from the Phase 3 CAHtalyst Pediatric Study evaluating the efficacy, safety, and tolerability of crinecerfont in children and adolescents with classic congenital adrenal hyperplasia due to 21-hydroxylase deficiency. The company said the Phase 3 Pediatric study met its primary endpoint, showing that treatment with crinecerfont resulted in a statistically significant decrease in serum androstenedione from baseline at Week 4 versus placebo following a glucocorticoid stable period.
Neurocrine Biosciences said the data from the CAHtalyst Pediatric and Adult studies, including data from the open-label treatment periods, will support regulatory submissions to the FDA in 2024 and later to the European Medicines Agency.
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U.S. Factory Orders Rebound Much More Than Expected In August
New orders for U.S. manufactured goods rebounded by much more than anticipated in the month of August, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Wednesday.
The report said factory orders surged by 1.2 percent in August after tumbling by 2.1 percent in July. Economists had expected factory order to rise by 0.3 percent.
The bigger than expected rebound by factory orders reflected a sharp increase in orders for non-durable goods, which spiked by 2.1 percent in August after jumping by 1.5 percent in July.
Meanwhile, the Commerce Department said durable goods orders inched up by 0.1 percent in August after plummeting by 5.6 percent in July.
The uptick in durable goods orders reflects a slight downward revision from the previously reported 0.2 percent increase.
The report also said shipments of manufactured goods shot up by 1.3 percent in August after climbing by 0.7 percent in July.
Inventories of manufactured goods also rose by 0.3 percent in August after edging up by 0.1 percent in the previous month.
With shipments increasing by much more than inventories, the inventories-to-shipments ratio slipped to 1.46 in August from 1.47 in July.
Kyowa Kirin To Buy Orchard Therapeutics; Orchard Shares Up In Pre-market
Kyowa Kirin Co., Ltd (KYKOF.PK), a Japanese pharmaceutical company, on Thursday said it agreed to acquire Orchard Therapeutics plc (ORTX) for $16.00 per ADS in cash.
The acquisition is expected to help Kyowa Kirin to “resource the ongoing and future launches of Libmeldy,” a drug to treat MLD and accelerate the development of Orchard Therapeutics’ research programs.
In pre-market activity, shares of Orchard Therapeutics are trading at $ 15.94 up 97.28% on Nasdaq.
The total consideration of $387.4 million reflects a premium of 144 percent of Orchard Therapeutics’ volume-weighted average price per ADS over the previous 30 days ending October 4. There is also an additional conditional payment of $1.00 per ADS involved, taking the maximum equity value to about $477.6 million.
A non-transferable contingent value right or CVR will be distributed to Orchard Therapeutics shareholders and they will be entitled to receive a cash payment of $1.00 per ADS for the approval of OTL-200, a treatment in the US for metachromatic leukodystrophy or MLD, an inherited disease of the body’s metabolic system.
The deal is scheduled to close in the first quarter of 2024.
Shares of Kyowa Kirin closed at 2544 yen down 0.24% in Japan, today.
Conagra Brands Inc. Q1 Earnings Summary
Below are the earnings highlights for Conagra Brands Inc. (CAG):
Earnings: $319.7 million in Q1 vs. -$77.5 million in the same period last year.
EPS: $0.67 in Q1 vs. -$0.16 in the same period last year.
Excluding items, Conagra Brands Inc. reported adjusted earnings of $315.9 million or $0.66 per share for the period.
Analysts projected $0.60 per share
Revenue: $2.90 billion in Q1 vs. $2.90 billion in the same period last year.
Full year EPS guidance: $2.70 – $2.75
U.S. Services Index Indicates Modestly Slower Growth In September
Reflecting slower rates of growth in new orders and employment, the Institute for Supply Management released a report on Wednesday showing a modest slowdown in the pace of growth in U.S. service sector activity in the month of September.
The ISM said its services PMI edged down to 53.6 in September from 54.5 in August, although a reading above 50 still indicates growth. The modest decrease matched economist estimates.
The slight pullback by the headline index came as the new orders index slumped to 51.8 in September from 57.5 in August, while the employment index dipped to 53.4 in September from 54.7 in August.
Meanwhile, the business activity index rose to 58.8 in September from 57.3 in August, indicating a modestly faster pace of growth.
The prices index for September was unchanged from the previous month at 58.9, suggesting prices paid by services organizations for materials and services increased for the 76th consecutive month.
On Monday, the ISM released a separate report showing a modest slowdown in the pace of contraction in U.S. manufacturing activity in the month of September.
The ISM said its manufacturing PMI rose to 49.0 in September from 47.6 in August, although a reading below 50 still indicates a contraction. Economists had expected the index to inch up to 47.7.