Benzinga Before The Bell: Musk's Twitter Lawsuit, Uber Penalized For Overcharging People With Disabilities, Johnson & Johnson Cuts Outlook And Other Top Financial Stories Tuesday, July 19


Amazon Courts More Trouble As Regulators Inspect Its Warehouses

  • Federal prosecutors in New York and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration inspected some, Inc AMZN warehouses, CNBC reports.
  • The review was a part of a civil investigation into working conditions at Amazon’s sprawling facilities.
  • OSHA, a division of the Labor Department, inspected Amazon warehouses outside New York City, Chicago, and Orlando for possible hazards in response to referrals from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, said SDNY chief spokesperson Nicholas Biase.


Tesla Investors Should Vote Against 2 Directors, Proxy Advisory Firm ISS Recommends

  • Proxy advisory firm Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) recommended that Tesla Inc TSLA investors vote against the re-election of two of its board members, Ira Ehrenpreis and Kathleen Wilson-Thompson, Reuters reports.
  • ISS reasoned that “the board’s risk oversight in light of the pledging (as collateral) of a significant amount of the company’s stock by certain directors.”
  • ISS stated that pledging company stock by directors or executive officers can pose a risk to outside shareholders’ investments.

US DoD, Lockheed Tout Handshake Deal For 375 F-35 Fighter Jets: Report

  • Reuters reported that the U.S. Department of Defense agreed with Lockheed Martin Corp LMT to build about 375 F-35 fighter jets over three years.
  • The report also added that the price of the most common version of the aircraft would increase due to inflation and slower production.
  • “We are pleased to announce that the Department and Lockheed Martin reached a handshake agreement for the next F-35 lot buy based on 375 aircraft,” the report cited William LaPlante, the Pentagon’s chief weapons buyer.

Wall Street Journal

Uber Penalized Millions To Settle Lawsuit For Overcharging People With Disabilities

  • The Department of Justice reached a multi-million-dollar settlement agreement with Uber Technologies Inc UBER for an alleged Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) violation.
  • Uber wrongfully charged wait-time fees to passengers with physical disabilities.
  • Under the agreement, Uber will offer several million dollars in compensation to more than 65,000 Uber users who were charged discriminatory fees due to disability.

Financial Times

UK’s Political Turmoil Tilted Scales For Arm IPO Towards US

  • U.K. government’s political turmoil has jeopardized Softbank Group Corp’s SFTBY SFTBF Arm Ltd London initial public offering ambitions as it hit the pause button, the Financial Times reports.
  • U.K. PM Boris Johnson has personally lobbied SoftBank’s billionaire, Masayoshi Son, to secure at least a partial listing for the chip designer on the LSE.
  • The collapse of Johnson’s government earlier this month followed the exit of investment minister Lord Gerry Grimstone and digital minister Chris Philp who were instrumental in the IPO plans.

New York Post

Elon Musk Looking To Countersue Twitter To Cancel Take-Private Deal

  • Fresh off his Greece vacation, Elon Musk is reportedly getting ready to fire his next salvo in the Twtitter, Inc. TWTR takeover saga.
  • Musk is mulling filing a counter-lawsuit against Twitter in the coming days, the New York Post reported, citing a source close to the case. The Tesla, Inc. TSLA CEO and Twitter are locked in a legal battle over the former’s decision to pull out of the $44 billion deal to buy the social media platform.
  • The case is open in the Delaware Court of Chancery. Musk has about 20 days from the date of the filing of the lawsuit — July 12, to file his counterclaims, the Post noted.


Johnson & Johnson Cuts Annual Profit Outlook, Pharma Unit Cushions Fall In Medical Devices

  • Johnson & Johnson JNJ has reported Q2 FY22 adjusted earnings of $2.59 per share, up 4.4% Y/Y and slightly ahead of the consensus of $2.57.
  • Net sales increased 3% Y/Y (8% on an operational basis) to $24.02 billion, marginally beating the consensus of $23.81 billion.
  • Pharmaceuticals contributed $13.32 billion in sales, +12.4%, due to Darzalex, Stelara, Tremfya, Erleada, and paliperidone palmitate and COVID-19 vaccine, offset by lower sales from Remicade and Imbruvica.

Tesla In Yet Another Legal Soup After German Suit Over Carbon Emission, Data Privacy

  • Tesla Inc TSLA has landed in another legal soup as Germany’s largest consumer protection group, the Federation of German Consumer Organizations (vzbv), has filed a lawsuit over alleged misleading advertising and data protection violations.
  • The group said Tesla made misleading advertising statements on how much carbon-dioxide emissions consumers save when purchasing a Tesla electric vehicle.
  • The lawsuit also alleges that the Tesla car’s sentry mode records its surroundings, violating the data protection laws, according to the vzbv.

General Electric Reveals What Its 3 New Units Will Be Called, Ahead Of Historic Spin-Off

  • General Electric GE has unveiled the names and logos of its three divisions that will soon function as independent public firms as the 130-year-old industrial conglomerate seeks to remold itself as an aviation-focused company.
  • GE said Monday its healthcare unit will be called GE HealthCare, with a purple monogram, and listed on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol “GEHC” by early 2023.
  • That segment accounted for nearly a quarter of GE’s 2021 revenue of $74.2 billion, according to Statista.

Tesla Layoffs Acquires Momentum: Read To Know

  • Tesla Inc TSLA downsized 69 Fremont employees across five different facilities, Silicon Valley Business Journal reports.
  • Tesla slashed jobs at its facilities at 901 Page Ave., 47700 Kato Rd., 47400 Kato Rd., 45201 Fremont Blvd., and 45500 Fremont Blvd.
  • Some 41 of the employees came from 45500 Fremont Blvd. Another 20 came from 901 Page Ave.

TikTok Parent Treads On Alibaba’s Path To Reduce Dependence On Foreign Tech

  • TikTok owner ByteDance looks to hire dozens of new semiconductor jobs, insinuating its in-house chip design unit, the SCMP reports.
  • ByteDance borrowed a leaf from Alibaba Group Holding Limited BABA and Tencent Holding Ltd’s TCEHY initiatives to reduce China’s reliance on foreign tech.
  • Both companies, along with ByteDance, have large cloud computing operations.

Celsius Bankruptcy Hearing: Lawyers Claim Users Gave Up Legal Rights To Crypto

  • Bankrupt cryptocurrency lender Celsius’ lawyers have asserted that the platform’s users gave up rights to the digital coins deposited in the borrow-and-earn programs.
  • At the first bankruptcy hearing on July 18, Celsius legal counsel Kirkland & Ellis stated that customers had transferred their title to coins to Celsius under the e-Terms of Use (“TOUs”).
  • As such, the team of lawyers, led by Pat Nash, said Celsius is “entitled to use, sell, pledge and rehypothecate those coins.”

Warren Buffett Now Owns Nearly 20% Of This Oil Exploration Company: What You Need To Know

  • Berkshire Hathaway Inc (NYSE: BRK-A) (NYSE: BRK-B) said on Monday it had purchased another 1.9 million shares of Occidental Petroleum Corporation OXY.
  • The Warren Buffett-led company said in a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filing that it had purchased 1.94 million shares for $112 million in the Texas-headquartered hydrocarbon explorer between July 14 and July 16.
  • Berkshire’s stake in Occidental now stands at nearly 19.4%. Should the ownership exceed 20%, it would allow Berkshire to record a proportionate amount of Occidental’s earnings as its own — based on the equity method of accounting.

Delta Air Lines Increases Airbus A220 Aircraft Firm Order With 12 Additions

  • Delta Air Lines, Inc. DAL orders 12 new A220-300 aircraft from European planemaker Airbus SE EADSY, bringing Delta’s total order for A220s to 107 aircraft - 45 A220-100s and 62 A220-300s.
  • “These additional aircraft in the A220 family are an excellent investment for our customers and employees and will be fundamental as we work toward a more sustainable future for air travel,” commented Mahendra Nair, a Delta senior vice president.
  • Delta currently has 11 A220-300s in service and 51 on order.

777 Partners Orders For Up To 66 More Fuel-Efficient Boeing Jets

  • Boeing Co BA and Miami-based private investment firm 777 Partners signed a new order and commitment for up to 66 737 MAX jets, including a firm order for 30 ultra-efficient, high-capacity 737-8-200s. The financial terms were not disclosed.
  • This is 777 Partners’ fifth order for the fuel-efficient jet in its class, rapidly building its portfolio to as many as 134 737 MAXs since 2021.

SAS Reaches Deal With Pilots’ Unions; Ends 15-Day Strike

  • SAS AB SASDY has reached a deal with SAS Scandinavia pilots’ unions after fifteen days of strike.
  • The parties have agreed on new 5.5-year collective bargaining agreements.
  • Flights operated by SAS Scandinavia will resume according to their regular traffic program as soon as possible.

Genesis Lends $2.36 Billions To 3AC, Which Filed Chapter 15 Bankruptcy: What’s Next?

  • Three Arrows Capital (3AC), a cryptocurrency hedge firm that just filed for Chapter 15 bankruptcy in New York, received a $2.36 billion loan from Genesis.
  • It required a margin of more than 80% on its loans to 3AC, and when 3AC failed to meet those criteria, it liquidated collateral. After that, it sought recovery of the outstanding debt through arbitration in New York.
  • A division of the cryptocurrency lender owned by Digital Currency Group (DCG), Genesis Asia Pacific Pte Ltd. provided $2.36 billion in loans to the defunct hedge firm 3AC.

What Does Apple’s Reported Hiring, Spending Slowdown Imply? Munster Weighs In

  • Apple, Inc. AAPL is planning to slow down hiring and spending in 2023, a precautionary move amid uncertain economic and geopolitical scenarios.
  • The slowdown, according to noted Apple analyst Gene Munster, is not companywide and will impact only some divisions.
  • Commenting on the development, Munster said it is becoming clear that most companies are bracing for a letup and expect companies to issue cautionary September-quarter guidance.

Post Mega London Stock Exchange Listing, GSK Spinoff Haleon’s Plunge Brings Valuation Concerns To The Fore

  • After GSK GSK spun off its consumer health division Haleon Plc into a separate entity, shares of the newly listed firm plunged during intraday trade, closing over 6.5% down at GBX 308.4 on the London Stock Exchange on Monday. Haleon continued to slump on Tuesday, losing the key GBX 300 level in early trading.
  • Haleon’s debut was the biggest listing on the LSE since Glencore’s GLNCY £38 billion listing in 2011, reports The Guardian. The shares tanked on debut as they entered volatile markets overshadowed by inflation concerns and political turmoil.

Why Ethereum Classic Has Soared Nearly 80% Over Past Week

  • Ethereum Classic ETC/USD has soared nearly 80% over the last seven days, while on an intraday basis, the coin has shot up nearly 20.5 to $25.60%.
  • The inheritor of Ethereum’s original blockchain moved alongside the global crypto market cap that increased 4.7% at press time to $1.02 trillion.

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