• Britain’s new leader: Brexiteer Boris Johnson to be prime minister
Boris Johnson, the ebullient Brexiteer who has promised to lead Britain out of the European Union with or without a deal by
Halloween, will replace Theresa May as prime minister after winning the leadership of the Conservative Party.
• Biogen profit rises 72% on multiple sclerosis therapy sales
Biogen posted a 72% rise in quarterly profit and lifted its 2019 earnings forecast, boosted by higher sales of its top-selling multiple
sclerosis therapy Tecfidera.
• Trump agrees to prompt responses to license requests for Huawei sales
President Donald Trump agreed at a meeting with the heads of top technology companies like Google to make “timely” decisions on
requests by U.S. companies to sell to blacklisted Huawei Technologies, the White House said.
• Hasbro results beat on higher demand for ‘Avengers: Endgame’ toys
Hasbro beat estimates for quarterly results, boosted by higher demand for action toys following the success of “Avengers: Endgame”
and Magic: The Gathering collectible card game.
• Diversity helps UBS defy banking gloom with profit rise
UBS delivered its best second-quarter results in nearly a decade, as strength in Swiss retail and corporate banking helped to offset
weakness in wealth management.
BEFORE THE BELL
Futures for U.S. stock indexes rose following upbeat results from top companies, while expectations of interest rate cuts by Federal
Reserve also boosted the sentiment. European shares were up, buoyed by the auto sector and positive earnings from UBS and
AMS. Asian equites closed in the green. A stronger dollar weighed down on gold prices. Oil was down after the recent rally.
Existing home sales data is on the economic calendar, while Visa and Texas Instruments are among the companies expected to
report their earnings after market close.
STOCKS TO WATCH
• Banco Santander SA (SAN). The Spanish lender reported an 18% fall in second-quarter net profit hurt by one-off restructuring
costs from its acquisition of Banco Popular and a weak performance in Britain. It reported a net profit of 1.39 billion euros for the three
months to the end of June, topping the 1.29 billion euros expected by analysts in a Reuters poll. It said it would take charges of 706
million euros, mainly in Spain, where it booked a loss of 262 million euros. Excluding restructuring costs, underlying net profit in the
quarter was up 5%. Net interest income was 8.95 billion euros, while analysts had forecast a NII of 8.76 billion euros. Separately,
Santander said it would fight a 100 million euro lawsuit being brought by Italian banker Andrea Orcel after it withdrew an offer to make
him its chief executive earlier this year.
• Biogen Inc (BIIB). The biotechnology company posted a 72% rise in quarterly profit and lifted its 2019 earnings forecast, boosted by
higher sales of its top-selling multiple sclerosis therapy Tecfidera. Net income attributable to the company rose to $1.49 billion, or
$7.85 per share, in the quarter ended June 30, from $866.6 million, or $4.18 per share, a year earlier. Total revenue rose to $3.62
billion from $3.36 billion. Tecfidera brought in $1.15 billion in second-quarter sales, beating estimates of $1.05 billion. The company
raised its 2019 adjusted earnings forecast to between $31.50 and $32.30 per share from the prior range of $28 to $29.
• Centene Corp (CNC). The health insurer reported a 65% jump in quarterly profit and raised its 2019 earnings forecast, as it
benefited from sales of its health plans for low-income people. Sales of Centene’s Medicaid health plans for low-income customers,
which account for about two-thirds of its total revenue, jumped nearly 36% to $12.12 billion. The company’s net earnings rose 65% to
$495 million, or $1.18 per share, in the second quarter. Total revenue in the second quarter rose 29.4% to $18.36 billion. The
company raised its 2019 adjusted earnings per share forecast to between $4.29 and $4.49, from $4.24 to $4.44. Centene also hiked
its sales forecast for this year to between $73.6 billion and $74.2 billion, from a prior range of $72.8 billion to $73.6 billion.
• Central European Media Enterprises Ltd (CETV). The broadcaster beat forecasts with a 20.5% rise in second-quarter core profit
and further reduced its debt, it said. The company’s operating income before depreciation and amortization (OIBDA) increased to
$73.3 million, above the average estimate of $67.3 million in a Reuters poll. Its OIBDA margin grew to 39.9% from 33.4% a year
earlier. Revenue was in line with expectations at $183.6 million, up 7.9% at constant exchange rates in CME’s five central and
eastern European markets due to growth in advertising markets but flat in actual terms.
• Hasbro Inc (HAS). The company beat estimates for quarterly results, boosted by higher demand for action toys following the
success of “Avengers: Endgame” and Magic: The Gathering collectible card game. Revenue from franchise brands, its largest