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20/12/21 Briefing

Updated: Feb 15

The S&P 500 futures trade 46 points, or 1.0%, below fair value, as risk sentiment takes a hit following fresh economic restrictions in Europe and word from Senator Manchin (D-WV) that he can't support the current form of the Build Back Better Act.

To curb the spread of COVID-19, the Netherlands reimposed a strict lockdown, the UK said it's considering tightening its restrictions, Germany said it will ban travelers from the UK, and Ireland announced curfews. The Europe Stoxx 600 is currently down 1.5% amid concerns that the restrictions will slow down growth.

In better news, NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio said the Omicron surge will be a "fast and temporary phenomenon" lasting "a matter of weeks." Moderna (MRNA 317.76, +22.96, +7.8%) announced its booster candidates at 50 g and 100 g dose levels neutralized the Omicron variant in preliminary data.

Separately, the People's Bank of China lowered its one-year loan prime rate by five basis points to 3.80% -- its first cut in 20 months -- and left its five-year rate unchanged.

Today's economic data will be limited to the Conference Board's Leading Economic Index for November (Briefing.comconsensus 1.0%) at 10:00 a.m. ET.

U.S. Treasury yields have edged lower amid lingering growth concerns and the negative bias in the futures market. The 2-yr yield is down three basis points to 0.61%, and the 10-yr yield is down two basis points to 1.38%. The U.S. Dollar Index is little changed at 96.53. WTI crude futures have dropped 4.6%, or $3.23, to $67.49/bbl.

In U.S. Corporate news:

  • Moderna (MRNA 317.76, +22.96): +7.8% after announcing its booster candidates at 50 g and 100 g dose levels neutralized the Omicron variant in preliminary data.

  • AT&T (T 24.11, +0.33): +1.4% after the stock was upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at Barclays.

  • Krispy Kreme (DNUT 17.55, +0.38): +2.2% after raising its FY21 revenue guidance to in-line with consensus estimates.

  • AMC Entertainment (AMC 28.47, -0.65): -2.2% despite selling more than 7 million tickets for showtimes Thursday through Sundayglobally. The company broke several post-reopening attendance records.

Reviewing overnight developments:

  • Equity indices in the Asia-Pacific region began the week on a lower note. Japan's Nikkei: -2.1% Hong Kong's Hang Seng: -1.9% China's Shanghai Composite: -1.1% India's Sensex: -2.1% South Korea's Kospi: -1.8% Australia's ASX All Ordinaries: -0.3%.

  • In economic data:

  • New Zealand's Q4 Westpac Consumer Sentiment 99.1 (last 102.7). November trade deficit NZD864 mln (last deficit of NZD1.302 bln)


  • In news:

  • Toyota will suspend operations at five factories in January due to the coronavirus and ongoing supply chain issues.

  • Bank of Japan Governor Kuroda said it is not the time to think about policy normalization.

  • The People's Bank of China lowered its one-year loan prime rate by five basis points to 3.80% and left its five-year rate unchanged.

  • China's foreign minister said that China does not fear a confrontation with the U.S. and that steady progress in ties between the two countries will be promoted in 2022.



  • Major European indices trade lower across the board with persistent concerns about more coronavirus-related restrictions weighing on sentiment. STOXX Europe 600: -1.5% Germany's DAX: -1.8% U.K.'s FTSE 100: -1.1% France's CAC 40: -1.1% Italy's FTSE MIB: -1.8% Spain's IBEX 35: -1.2%.

  • In economic data:

  • Eurozone's October Current Account surplus EUR18.10 bln (last surplus of EUR18.70 bln)

  • U.K.'s December CBI Industrial Trends Orders 24 (last 26)


  • In news:

  • A new lockdown is being imposed in the Netherlands while the U.K. might also tighten its restrictions.

  • The U.K.'s Brexit minister resigned from his post due to displeasure with the direction of the government.

  • The German government nominated Joachim Nagel to replace Jens Weidmann as President of the Bundesbank.

  • European Central Bank policymaker De Cos repeated that a rate hike in 2022 is unlikely.




U.S. equity futures:

  • S&P 500 Futures: -55 @ 4,566

  • DJIA Futures: -399 @ 34,966

  • Nasdaq 100 Futures: -211 @ 15,591

Overseas:

  • Europe: DAX -1.8%, FTSE -1.1%, CAC -1.1%

  • Asia: Nikkei -2.1%, Hang Seng -1.9%, Shanghai Composite -1.1%

Commodities:

  • Crude Oil -3.52 @ 67.34

  • Nat Gas +0.105 @ 3.795

  • Gold -6.45 @ 1798.45

  • Silver -0.251 @ 22.282

  • Copper -0.0260 @ 4.2670

U.S. Summary:

  • Earnings/Guidance (Full Earnings Calendar):

  • Krispy Kreme, Inc. (KKD) raises FY21 outlook

  • Viatris (VTRS) pushes back its investor event, reaffirms FY21 guidance


  • General News:

  • Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) says he will not support Build Back Better Act which means the legislation can not pass the Senate, according to Politico

  • Federal Appeals Court reinstated President Biden's vaccination mandate for companies with 100 or more employees, but this issue will ultimately be decided by the Supreme Court, according to the New York Times

  • NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins says there are encouraging signs in South Africa that there is not much hospitalization with Omicron, but he needs more data to be confident that will be the case in other countries, according to CBS News

  • Netherlands imposes new lockdown while UK considers similar actions, according to the New York Times

  • New Jersey, Maryland, and Colorado governors will not implement lockdowns or restrictions, according to the New York Times

  • Vaccines from Johnson and Johnson (JNJ), AstraZeneca (AZN), China, and Russia do little to stop infections from Omicron, according to the New York Times

  • World Economic Forum in Davos has been cancelled due to Omicron variant; rescheduled for summer - CNBC

  • Fauci says he doesn't expect shutdowns in US, but there will be a record amount of cases and hospitalizations due to Omicron variant. President Biden will address nation Tuesday, according to the Washington Post

  • Airlines preparing for 5G flight disruptions, according to the Wall Street Journal

  • Spider-Man: No Way Home generated $253 mln, ahead of expectations, according to Variety

  • Amgen (AMGN): FDA approves Tezspire for the add-on maintenance treatment of severe asthma

  • Apple (AAPL) wants India antitrust case dismissed, according to Reuters

  • argenx (ARGX): FDA announces it approved Vyvgart for myasthenia gravis (gMG)

  • Arrowhead (ARWR) initiates building of new laboratory and office facility; to invest $200-$250 mln in the two projects

  • AstraZeneca (AZN) reports Saphnelo recommended for approval in the EU by CHMP for the treatment of patients with systemic lupus erythematosus

  • BeiGene (BGNE) signs strategic collaboration with Novartis (NVS) to advance clinical development of ociperlimab in combination with tislelizumab

  • Biogen (BIIB) Announces Reduced Price for ADUHELM to Improve Access for Patients with Early Alzheimer's Disease

  • bluebird bio (BLUE) Announces FDA Priority Review of Biologics License Application for eli-cel Gene Therapy for Cerebral Adrenoleukodystrophy (CALD) in Patients Without a Matched Sibling Donor

  • Canadian Nat'l Rail (CNI) provides update on CEO search

  • Cara Therapeutics (CARA): KORSUVA receives TDAPA reimbursement beginning April 2022

  • Cytokinetics (CYTK) and Ji Xing Pharmaceuticals Limited announced collaboration expansion, exclusive license agreement for omecamtiv mecarbil; Ji Xing will also make a Common Stock Purchase Agreement at $39.125/share

  • CytoSorbents (CTSO) Announces Publication of U.S. CTC Multicenter Registry Results Using CytoSorb in Critically Ill COVID-19 Patients on Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation

  • DaVita (DVA) increases share repurchase authorization by $2 bln

  • Editas Medicine (EDIT): FDA clears IND application for EDIT-301 as treatment for transfusion-dependent beta thalassemia

  • Exxon Mobil (XOM): Nest sells stakes in Exxon and Marathon (MRO) due to climate risks, according to Financial Times

  • First Hawaiian (FHB) CFO resigns for personal reasons

  • Flowers Foods (FLO) voluntarily recalls 3,000 loaves of Nature's Own Honey Wheat bread

  • Gaming and Leisure Properties (GLPI) declares special earnings and profits cash dividend of $0.24/share

  • Intra-Cellular Therapies (ITCI) receives FDA approval for CAPLYTA

  • KemPharm's (KMPH) Board authorized $50 mln share repurchase program

  • Lamb Weston (LW) increases quarterly dividend 4.3% to $0.245/share and authorizes an additional $250 mln for share repurchase program

  • Moderna (MRNA) reports preliminary booster data and updates strategy to address Omicron Variant

  • Moderna (MRNA) ends patient fight with NIH related to coronavirus vaccines, according to the New York Times

  • Natus Medical (NTUS) names Thomas J. Sullivan as CEO, effective December 27

  • Nike (NKE) entering world of NFTs, according to the Wall Street Journal

  • Novartis (NVS) provides an update on Phase III ligelizumab studies

  • Provention Bio (PRVB) announces that the Company has appointed Christina Yi as Chief Operations Officer

  • Rio Tinto (RIO) elects Dominic Barton to succeed Simon Thompson as the company's new Chair

  • Seacoast Banking (SBCF) renews share repurchase program to buy back up to $100 mln of its common stock

  • Shoe Carnival (SCVL) announced that its Board of Directors authorized a new share repurchase program for up to $50 million of its outstanding common stock, effective January 1, 2022

  • Zai Lab (ZLAB) partner agenex (ARGX) receives FDA approval for VYVGART

  • Walt Disney (DIS): YouTube TV (GOOG) announced that it reached a deal with DIS and have already started to restore access to channels like ESPN and FX


  • M&A:

  • Blackstone (BX) mulling plan to acquire luxury apartment rentals in NYC, according to Bloomberg

  • Evoqua Water (AQUA) acquires Renal Business from STERIS

  • Gold Royalty (GROY) Announces Intention to Acquire Elemental Royalties Corp

  • Griffon (GFF) to acquire Hunter Fan Company from MidOcean Partners for $845 mln; deal expected to be earnings and cash flow accretive

  • Verso (VRS) to be acquired for $27.00 per share

  • Bank of Montreal (BMO) acquires Bank of the West for $16.3 bln

  • MasTec (MTZ) to acquire Henkels & McCoy

  • McKesson (MCK) enters agreement to sell its Austrian Business to Quadrifolia Management GmbH

  • Reliance Steel (RS) acquires Rotax Metals

  • Sonoco Products (SON) agrees to acquire Ball Metalpack (BLL)


  • Syndicate:

  • ANI Pharma (ANIP) files for 3,069,555 share common stock offering by selling shareholders

  • Quantum (QMCO) files for 361,010 share common stock offering by selling shareholders

  • S&W Seed (SANW) files for 1,847,343 share common stock offering by selling shareholders

  • Select Energy Services (WTTR) files for 1,211,375 share common stock offering by selling shareholder

  • SL Green Realty (SLG) files mixed securities shelf offering

  • The Oncology Institute (TOI) files for 8,927,543 share common stock offering; also files for 86,733,593 share common stock offering by selling shareholders

  • Wejo (WEJO) files for 11.5 mln share common stock offering; also files for 63,054,367 share common stock offering by selling shareholders


  • IPOs:

  • Expected to Price:

  • No IPOs expected to price.



Gapping Up/Down

  • Gapping up:

  • VRS +31%, CIT +10.1%, FCNCA +9%, ARGX +8.2%, VXX +7.9%, MRNA +4.7%, BGNE +2.3%


  • Gapping down:

  • TOI -6%, USO -2.4%, VTRS -2.1%, XLE -2%, SMH-1.7%, IWM -1.5%, QQQ -1.3%, SPY -1.1%, DIA-1.1%, NVS -1%, IGV -0.9%


Analyst Research (see Upgrades/Downgradescalendarfor full list):

  • Upgrades

  • Anthem (ANTM) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Mizuho; tgt raised to $510

  • Boston Beer Co (SAM) upgraded to Hold from Underperform at Jefferies; tgt raised to $535

  • Cerner (CERN) upgraded to Equal-Weight from Underweight at Morgan Stanley; tgt raised to $85

  • Coastal Financial (CCB) upgraded to Outperform from Mkt Perform at Keefe Bruyette; tgt $70

  • Coca-Cola FEMSA (KOF) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Citigroup; tgt $60

  • Dover (DOV) upgraded to Equal Weight from Underweight at Wells Fargo; tgt raised to $184

  • Federal Realty (FRT) upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at JP Morgan; tgt raised to $142

  • First Midwest Banc (FMBI) upgraded to Outperform from Mkt Perform at Keefe Bruyette; tgt $25

  • Genfit (GNFT) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at H.C. Wainwright; tgt $8

  • GFL Environmental (GFL) upgraded to Buy from Hold at TD Securities

  • Healthpeak (PEAK) upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at JP Morgan; tgt raised to $40

  • Limelight Networks (LLNW) upgraded to Strong Buy from Mkt Perform at Raymond James; tgt $5

  • Old National Bancorp (ONB) upgraded to Outperform from Mkt Perform at Keefe Bruyette; tgt $22

  • Pactiv Evergreen (PTVE) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Deutsche Bank; tgt lowered to $15

  • Public Storage (PSA) upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at JP Morgan; tgt raised to $385

  • Realogy (RLGY) upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at JP Morgan; tgt $21

  • Rexford Industrial Realty (REXR) upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at JP Morgan; tgt raised to $84


  • Downgrades:

  • BrightView (BV) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Goldman; tgt lowered to $15

  • Canopy Growth (CGC) downgraded to Underweight from Neutral at Piper Sandler; tgt lowered to $7

  • Extra Space Storage (EXR) downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at JP Morgan; tgt $220

  • Hayward Holdings (HAYW) downgraded to Hold from Buy at Jefferies; tgt $27

  • Regency Centers (REG) downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at JP Morgan; tgt $78

  • Sunrun (RUN) downgraded to Sector Weight from Overweight at KeyBanc Capital Markets


  • Others:

  • 89bio (ETNB) initiated with a Buy at H.C. Wainwright; tgt $46

  • Ayala Pharmaceuticals (AYLA) initiated with a Buy at H.C. Wainwright; tgt $18

  • Cannae Holdings (CNNE) initiated with an Outperform at RBC Capital Mkts; tgt $42

  • Compass Therapeutics (CMPX) initiated with an Outperform at SVB Leerink; tgt $12

  • CrowdStrike (CRWD) initiated with an Outperform at Daiwa Securities; tgt $224

  • Custom Truck One Source (CTOS) resumed with a Buy at Citigroup; tgt $9

  • Franco-Nevada (FNV) initiated with a Buy at H.C. Wainwright; tgt $167

  • Lucid Motors USA (LCID) initiated with a Neutral at Guggenheim; tgt $38

  • ProPhase (PRPH) initiated with a Buy at H.C. Wainwright; tgt $12

  • RBC Bearings (ROLL) initiated with a Neutral at Goldman; tgt $217

  • SoFi Technologies (SOFI) initiated with a Buy at Citigroup; tgt $20


Upcoming Events:

  • Econ Data:

  • 10:00 ET: Leading Indicators for Nov (Briefing.comConsensus 1.0%; Prior 0.9%)


  • Earnings:

  • Monday (Dec 20)

  • Afternoon: CVGW MU NKE


  • Tuesday (Dec 21)

  • Morning: APOG CGNT EPAC FDS GIS NEOG RAD

  • Afternoon: AIR BB CAMP


  • Wednesday (Dec 22)

  • Morning: KMX CTAS MSM PAYX




Asia & Europe detail:

Asia: Nikkei -2.1%, Hang Seng -1.9%, Shanghai Composite -1.1%

Equity indices in the Asia-Pacific region began the week on a lower note. Toyota will suspend operations at five factories in January due to the coronavirus and ongoing supply chain issues. Bank of Japan Governor Kuroda said it is not the time to think about policy normalization. The People's Bank of China lowered its one-year loan prime rate by five basis points to 3.80% and left its five-year rate unchanged. China's foreign minister said that China does not fear a confrontation with the U.S. and that steady progress in ties between the two countries will be promoted in 2022.

  • In economic data:

  • New Zealand's Q4 Westpac Consumer Sentiment 99.1 (last 102.7). November trade deficit NZD864 mln (last deficit of NZD1.302 bln)


---Equity Markets---

  • Japan's Nikkei: -2.1%

  • Hong Kong's Hang Seng: -1.9%

  • China's Shanghai Composite: -1.1%

  • India's Sensex: -2.1%

  • South Korea's Kospi: -1.8%

  • Australia's ASX All Ordinaries: -0.3%

---FX---

  • USD/JPY: -0.1% to 113.58

  • USD/CNH: +0.1% to 6.3847

  • USD/INR: -0.1% to 75.88

Europe: DAX -1.8%, FTSE -1.1%, CAC -1.1%

Major European indices trade lower across the board with persistent concerns about more coronavirus-related restrictions weighing on sentiment. A new lockdown is being imposed in the Netherlands while the U.K. might also tighten its restrictions. The U.K.'s Brexit minister resigned from his post due to displeasure with the direction of the government. The German government nominated Joachim Nagel to replace Jens Weidmann as President of the Bundesbank. European Central Bank policymaker De Cos repeated that a rate hike in 2022 is unlikely.

  • In economic data:

  • Eurozone's October Current Account surplus EUR18.10 bln (last surplus of EUR18.70 bln)

  • U.K.'s December CBI Industrial Trends Orders 24 (last 26)


---Equity Markets---

  • STOXX Europe 600: -1.5%

  • Germany's DAX: -1.8%

  • U.K.'s FTSE 100: -1.1%

  • France's CAC 40: -1.1%

  • Italy's FTSE MIB: -1.8%

  • Spain's IBEX 35: -1.2%

---FX---

  • EUR/USD: +0.3% to 1.1275

  • GBP/USD: -0.2% to 1.3212

  • USD/CHF: -0.1% to 0.9232


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The S&P 500 futures are up 3 points and are trading % above fair value. The Nasdaq 100 futures are up 9 points and are trading roughly in-line with fair value. The Dow Jones Industrial Average futures