Tuesday Afternoon Business Brief
June 17, 2014, 1:40 PM
- One Wall Street analyst says "there really isn't a lot of impetus to sell or buy" and the stock market is just "kind of drifting along" these days. Several financial stocks were trading higher as the yield on the 10-year Treasury note increased. Half of the 10 sectors in the S&P 500 are up, led by financials. Goldman Sachs is seeing the biggest gains among the Dow's 30 stocks.
- Recent data on the U.S. economy has been mixed, but chief executives of large U.S. companies are increasingly optimistic. The Business Roundtable says that its CEO outlook index rose to 95.4 in the second quarter, the highest it's been in two years. Those who were surveyed expressed greater optimism about hiring and sales, though the percentage of CEOs planning to invest more in their businesses fell to 44 percent from 48 percent.
- Valeant plans to take a buyout offer for Allergan directly to its shareholders this week, as the Botox maker continues to rebuff its proposals. Valeant Pharmaceuticals Chairman and CEO J. Michael Pearson charged in a conference call today that "Allergan's management and their board will never sit down and act in the interest of their shareholders." The latest bid from Valeant and Bill Ackman's Pershing Square Capital Management is worth $53 billion. Allergan has repeatedly rejected offers as underpriced and risky.
- Argentina's president is refusing to go along with a U.S. judge's ruling requiring Argentina repay $1.5 billion of defaulted bonds. Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected her government's appeals and left the order in place. In a televised address last night, President Cristina Fernandez vowed not to submit to what she calls "extortion" by "speculators" who scooped up Argentine junk bonds after the country's 2001 default and have refused to accept new bonds worth much less.
- Reynolds American plans to begin national distribution of its Vuse brand electronic cigarette next week. Reynolds launched Vuse in Colorado last summer and expanded into Utah earlier this year. It says Vuse quickly became the top-selling brand in both states with high levels of repeat purchase. Retail outlets in all 50 states will be carrying Vuse beginning next week.
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