Economic Outlook

Pfizer Analysts Raise Odds Of Success For Coronavirus Vaccine Candidate To 100%

Pfizer Inc. reported Monday with strong Phase 3 interim efficacy data for its coronavirus vaccine candidate.

The Pfizer Analysts: Morgan Stanley analyst David Risinger has an Equal-weight rating on Pfizer with a $42 price target.

SVB Leerink analyst Geoffrey Porges reiterated a Market Perform rating and increased the price target from $43 to $44.

Morgan Stanley On Pfizer’s Vaccine Economics, Timeline: The more than 90% efficacy with 94 cases suggests the final analysis with 164 cases will in all likelihood exceed the FDA’s efficacy criteria of 50%, Risinger said in a note.

Based on this and the lack of any serious safety concerns, the analyst raised the vaccine’s probability of success from 65% to 100%.

With Pfizer planning to submit emergency use authorization in the third week of November — when it has two months of median safety data — Risinger said he expects the FDA to hold a panel meeting to discuss the data by early-to-mid December. CLICK for complete article

“The surest way to corrupt a youth is to instruct him to hold in higher esteem those who think alike than those who think differently.”
– Friedrich Nietzsche

The War in Canada’s Telehealth Space Is Heating Up!

Even though the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted several economies, it has given a much-needed boost to some unorthodox businesses. Telehealth is one of them. While there was a limited usage of telehealth before the pandemic, Canada has seen a notable acceleration in that space in the last couple of months.

What is telehealth?

Telehealth is an emerging trend that distributes healthcare beyond the hospitals’ walls, with the help of video chats or teleconferences. The technological infrastructure will lower the overall medical treatment cost, and one can get it anywhere, anytime. According to Markets and Markets’s research, the telehealth market is expected to grow to US$55.6 billion by 2025 — a staggering growth rate of approximately 17% compounded annually.

No wonder large investors have attracted to this emerging health care space. Loblaw, the country’s largest food and pharma retailer, recently invested $75 million in a telehealth company — Maple. Maple offers online consultations with the help of a mobile or a computer app. Under the deal, Maple will provide virtual care to Loblaw’s Shoppers Drug Mart customers…CLICK for complete article

Is your pick-up truck holding you back from retirement?

 

The Wall Street Journal recently shared the story of a couple who is struggling because the pandemic has upended their income and job situation. To make matters worse, they’re dealing with a massive amount of consumer debt:

The Denton, Texas, couple pay $4,400 a month on their mortgage, four car loans and leases, and student debt, Ms. Scott-White said. Minimum required monthly credit-card payments total about $700. The debt was manageable pre-pandemic, she said.

She deferred lease payments on her Infiniti QX60 for three months and started paying again with unemployment benefits. Her husband traded in his Ford F-150 in August for a lower-cost car and reduced his original monthly payment of $820 by about $100, and his income covers the $2,100 mortgage.

The Ford F-150 payment stuck out to me for a couple of reasons. Maybe it’s because I live in Michigan but I see Ford trucks all over the roads. And a monthly outlay of $820 is quite high for a car payment, especially when you consider this family has credit card debt and three other car loans or leases.

After doing some digging, it’s no surprise I see so many Ford F-Series trucks on the road. It’s been the best selling vehicle in the United States for 39 straight years (and it looks like 2020 will make it 40 in a row).

Full Story

 

New emoji approved for 2020

This year has been hard. Wildfire smoke has engulfed the West Coast, hundreds of thousands are dead from an ongoing pandemic, and the US government is deadlocked to the point of illegitimacy, incapable of taking action against the economic, political, ecological, and medical devastation that threatens to engulf us. Even for those not directly affected, the perception of the ongoing crises has turned into a kind of psychic assault, challenging the limits of what we can express.

Fortunately, a new crop of emoji has just been approved by the Unicode Consortium to help out. They probably won’t reach your phone until 2021, but they’re clearly influenced by the chaos of the year, whether it’s “face exhaling” (clearly exhausted), “face in clouds” (smoke?), or “heart on fire” (self-explanatory).

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A comical look at Microsoft’s $1B+ acquisitions

 

Like a spurned lover, Microsoft quickly pivoted from its failed TikTok bid and dropped a cool $7.5B to acquire ZeniMax Media, the parent company of game publisher Bethesda Softworks (Doom, Fallout, Elder Scrolls).

It’s Microsoft’s largest game acquisition ever and the tech giant’s 11th acquisition of $1B+ since 1987.

Here are the others, with our takes on the deals:

  • The priciest (and spammiest) acquisition: LinkedIn for $26.2B in 2016.
  • The “I’ve never heard of this company, but its early employees are def way richer than me” acquisition: Fast Search & Transfer for $1.2B in 2008.
  • The “Are these tech companies or the place we get our eyewear prescriptions done?” acquisitions: Tied — Visio Corp ($1.4B in 1999) and Navision ($1.2B in 2002).
  • The Ron Burgundy “I immediately regret this decision” acquisition: Tied — Skype for $8.5B in 2011 and Nokia for $7.2B in 2014.
  • The “Let’s piss off software engineers” acquisition: GitHub for $7.5B in 2018.
  • The “Parents love this because it’s a nanny substitute” acquisition: Mojang (Minecraft) for $2.5B in 2014.

The “Who needs Zuckerberg when you can have David Sacks?” acquisition: Yammer for $1.2B in 2012.