United States

Robert Cyran

Breakingviews - Breakdown: The scramble for a Covid-19 vaccine

Aug 11 2020

NEW YORK/LONDON (Reuters Breakingviews) - Pharmaceutical groups such as AstraZeneca and Pfizer may soon get regulators’ blessing for new coronavirus inoculations. A successful vaccine could ease a crisis that the Congressional Budget Office estimates will cost the United States alone some $8 trillion. Yet doubts over efficacy will linger, and manufacturing challenges mean poorer countries may have to wait. The reward for drugmakers is equally uncertain.

Breakingviews - Gilead gives glimpse into feverish drug market

Jun 29 2020

NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - Medicine may be a science but drug pricing is definitely an art. That’s especially true of Gilead Sciences’ treatment for Covid-19, given the lack of alternative treatments for a pandemic. The $2,300 price of a course of remdesivir may sound high – and is compared with the basic cost of manufacturing the stuff – but is actually fairly restrained.

Breakingviews - Europe’s latest Apple bite is close to the core

Jun 16 2020

LONDON/NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - Big Tech investors have historically brushed off the threat from Margrethe Vestager, the European Commission’s antitrust tzar who wants to reduce U.S. behemoths’ digital dominance. The combined market value of Apple, Amazon.com, Facebook and Google owner Alphabet has risen more than threefold to $4.4 trillion since the Dane’s first term started in 2014. Two new probes into Apple, launched on Tuesday, suggest that it’s time to start taking her more seriously.

BREAKINGVIEWS-Telemedicine may be U.S. healthcare's new normal

May 21 2020

NEW YORK, May 21 (Reuters Breakingviews) - The doctor’s office is increasingly in everyone's home. Online visits in the United States are surging during the pandemic, as it’s safer, insurers are waving carrots to use them, and restrictive rules are easing. While virtual visits are cheaper, though, increased uptake could push up total healthcare spending.

Breakingviews - U.S.-China trade escalation singles out hostages

May 15 2020

NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - The U.S.-China trade war is escalating, not just in rhetoric about the coronavirus but also in the world of high technology. Further restrictions on China’s Huawei Technologies by the administration of President Donald Trump heighten trade tensions between Washington and Beijing, as does the decision of Taiwan's TSMC to build a $12 billion chip plant in Arizona. Multinationals like Qualcomm and Apple are now vulnerable, too.

BREAKINGVIEWS-Biotech M&A deal looks too rich for its blood

May 05 2020

NEW YORK, May 5 (Reuters Breakingviews) - Alexion Pharmaceuticals is either buying Portola Pharmaceuticals on the cheap at $1.4 billion, or paying a whopping premium – it all depends on your starting date. The deal means the $22 billion biotech snaps up a promising drug to reverse anticoagulants. The target has been on a downward slide for years, with the shares falling about 80% since the medication, Andexxa, was approved in 2018. But the buyer is shelling out a 132% premium based on Monday’s closing stock price. It’s more likely Alexion is overpaying.

Breakingviews - Apple may bruise but it should still bounce back

Apr 30 2020

NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - A must-have gadget has become a can-probably-wait. Apple’s sales of iPhones fell 7% in the quarter ending March 28, and the fall in the following three months should be worse. That is both predictable, and self-limiting. Apple should bounce back.

Breakingviews - Breakdown: Coronavirus goes global

Feb 27 2020

NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - It’s not time to panic, but it is time to face reality. The coronavirus is spreading around the world. China’s unprecedented efforts slowed the spread of the new disease officially known as Covid-19, but that’s merely won some time. Infected people have now been detected on every continent except Antarctica. Competent and open government is the best defense against hospitals and society being overwhelmed. But nations will probably have to deal with recurring outbreaks.

Breakingviews - Virgin Galactic’s valuation looks stratospheric

Feb 26 2020

NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - The assumptions baked into Virgin Galactic’s nearly $7 billion enterprise value, assuming the exercise of new warrants, are out of this world. The stock price of Richard Branson’s space-tourism outfit has more than quadrupled in three months, and the EV – which deducts balance-sheet cash – has rocketed twice as fast. A new Breakingviews calculator shows something much closer to earth is merited.

Breakingviews - Virus hits markets the way trade war didn’t

Feb 24 2020

NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - First came trade war, now a rapidly spreading global virus. It’s the latter that has investors more nervous. Monday saw the S&P 500 Index fall over 3%, while Treasury yields hit a record low. The anxiety is overdue, because the potential impact of the disease known as Covid-19 is serious business.

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