- 1. Investor George Soros hands son control of $25 billion empire
- 2. Illumina CEO resigns under pressure from activist investor
- 3. Target stores in Oklahoma briefly evacuated after threat over Pride merchandise
- 4. Stock futures rise ahead of inflation data, Fed meeting
- 5. Novartis to buy Chinook Therapeutics for $3.2 billion
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1. Investor George Soros hands son control of $25 billion empire
Investor and philanthropist George Soros is transferring control of his $25 billion empire to one of his younger sons, Alexander Soros, The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday. The younger Soros told the Journal in his first interview since the decision that he is a center-left thinker, and "more political" than his father, a longtime supporter of liberal causes and politicians. "We think alike," the elder Soros said. The family's non-profit Open Society Foundations steers about $1.5 billion a year to human rights and democracy building groups worldwide. The Soros' Democracy PAC has supported the election campaigns of prosecutors and law enforcement officials aiming to address racial bias in the justice system, the Journal said.
2. Illumina CEO resigns under pressure from activist investor
Illumina CEO Francis deSouza resigned Sunday after a battle with activist investor Carl Icahn, who wanted to get rid of deSouza as he pushed the gene-sequencing machine maker to scrap its $7.1 billion acquisition of Grail, which makes cancer diagnostic tests. Icahn tweeted that deSouza's departure was a "very positive occurrence." The company's chair left earlier this year. Illumina said Senior Vice President and General Counsel Charles Dadswell would take over as interim CEO, with DeSouza sticking around as an adviser until the end of next month. U.S. and European regulators have told Illumina to unwind its acquisition, but Illumina is fighting the orders in courts.
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3. Target stores in Oklahoma briefly evacuated after threat over Pride merchandise
Several Target stores in the Oklahoma City area were briefly evacuated over the weekend as a precaution after media outlets received bomb threats in the latest backlash over Target's Pride Month merchandise, The Oklahoman reported Sunday. TV station KFOR reported that it received an email claiming two of the stores had bombs inside, hidden inside some products, and that the explosives would detonate within hours. "Time is ticking," the message said. The closures, which lasted about two hours, affected stores in Oklahoma City and three nearby towns. Target removed some LGBTQ Pride displays and products in late May after critics posted videos criticizing the company.
4. Stock futures rise ahead of inflation data, Fed meeting
U.S. stock futures edged higher early Monday at the start of a week that will include fresh inflation data and a two-day Federal Reserve policy meeting. Futures tied to the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq were up 0.2% and 0.4% at 6:30 a.m. ET. Dow Jones Industrial Average futures were flat. The S&P 500 posted its fourth straight week of gains last week, touching its highest level since August. Investors expect the Fed to pause its aggressive campaign to raise interest rates to fight inflation on Wednesday at the end of its two-day meeting, although continuing economic strength has eroded expectations the central bank will start cutting rates at the end of the year.
5. Novartis to buy Chinook Therapeutics for $3.2 billion
Swiss drug maker Novartis announced Monday it had agreed to buy Chinook Therapeutics for $3.2 billion in a deal that will add two drugs for a chronic kidney disease to its list of new products in late-stage clinical trials. Novartis will pay $40 per share, representing a 66.7% premium over the Seattle-based Chinook's Friday closing price of $24. Novartis CEO Vas Narasimhan is seeking future blockbuster drugs after a big effort to cut costs and narrow the company's focus to fewer therapeutic areas. Chinook expects to report data from the late-stage study of its experimental oral kidney-disease drug atrasentan in the fourth quarter of 2023.
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