Friday, November 04, 2011

Morning Journal George Will on diversity

News on Stocks in Our Portfolios

04:55 AM The EU Commission opens an in-depth antitrust probe into Johnson & Johnson's (JNJ) $21.3B purchase of Synthes. "The proposed acquisition would remove a competitor from some markets which are already concentrated," explains the regulator, which has until March to decide. (PR) Comment!

03:52 AM PepsiCo (PEP) is selling its Chinese bottling ops to a beverage unit of instant noodle and drinks maker Tingyi Holdings, reports say (I, II, III). In return, PepsiCo will receive a stake of under 10% in the unit with an option to increase it to up to 49%. The deal will enable PepsiCo access to Tingyi's large Chinese distribution platform. Comment!

09:20 AM Qualcomm (QCOM) is up 9.1% after delivering a strong FQ4 report fueled by healthy chip sales. Morgan Keegan believes Qualcomm's EPS guidance is conservative, and upside could be provided by stronger-than-expected chip margins or phone shipments. If sales of high-end Snapdragon chips continue soaring (they were up 4x in FY11, per Qualcomm's CC), chip margins could hold up quite well. Comment!

Finally, the really good news of the day:

Study Will Be Stopped Early and MDV3100 Offered to All Participants; Medivation to Hold Conference Call at 8:30AM Eastern Time Today

SAN FRANCISCO, CA and TOKYO -- (MARKET WIRE) -- 11/03/11 -- Medivation, Inc. (NASDAQ: MDVN) and Astellas Pharma Inc. announced that the Independent Data Monitoring Committee (IDMC) has informed the companies of positive results from a planned interim analysis of the Phase 3 AFFIRM trial of MDV3100 in men with advanced prostate cancer previously treated with chemotherapy. MDV3100, the first androgen receptor signaling inhibitor, successfully met the study's pre-specified interim efficacy stopping criteria, demonstrating a clinically meaningful and statistically significant (p < 0.0001) improvement in overall survival compared to placebo. As a result, the IDMC recommended that AFFIRM be stopped early and men who received placebo be offered MDV3100. As reported by the IDMC, MDV3100 produced a 4.8-month advantage in median overall survival compared to placebo. The estimated median survival for men treated with MDV3100 was 18.4 months compared with 13.6 months for men treated with placebo. MDV3100 provided a 37 percent reduction in risk of death compared to placebo (Hazard Ratio=0.631). The IDMC further determined, considering the observed safety profile, that MDV3100 demonstrated a favorable risk-to-benefit ratio sufficient to stop the study. A full analysis of the results from AFFIRM, including safety data, will be submitted for presentation at an upcoming scientific congress.


This Week’s Data

September factory orders rose 0.3% versus expectations of a 0.2% decline.

The Institute for Supply Management’s October nonmanufacturing index came in at 52.9 versus estimates of 54.0.

October nonfarm payrolls rose 80,000 versus forecasts of 100,000; unemployment rate 9.0 versus expectations of 9.1. Offsetting the disappointing NFP was a huge upward revision of September’s number.


German PMI falls 4.3%:



The media and Herman Cain as seen by my favorite liberal (medium):

Great piece by George Will on conformity to insure diversity (medium):

Three grievances of the American public (medium):