Quick view: Merck to buy Idenix for about $3.85 billion

Updated: Jun 10 2014, 06:27am hrs
Merck will buy the biotechnology company Idenix Pharmaceuticals for $3.85 billion in an effort to bolster its arsenal of potential drugs in the hotly competitive hepatitis C area, the companies announced on Monday. Merck will pay $24.50 in cash for each share of Idenix, an eye-popping 3.4 times Idenixs closing price of $7.23 a share on Friday. Merck is considered one of the more viable potential competitors and is hoping to bring a combination of two of its hepatitis C drugs to market in the next year or two.

Analog Devices to buy Hittite for $2.4 billion

Semiconductor maker Analog Devices says it agreed to buy Hittite Microwave for $78 per share in cash in a deal worth about $2.4 billion. Analog says Hittite's circuit making technology complements Analog Devices and help it expand into industrial, communications infrastructure, and automotive markets. The price is a 29% premium to Hittite's closing price Friday of $60.56. Analog Devices expects the deal to close in Q3. The company also reaffirmed guidance for Q3 of 60 to 64 cents per share. Analysts expect 63 cents per share.

China Mobile set to buy stake in Thailands True

State-owned China Mobile is set to buy an 18% stake in Thailand telecoms group True via a private placement, valued at around $581 million based on the current market price, as part of the Thai group plan to secure a foreign partner, sources familiar with the matter said. True, backed by billionaire Dhanin Chearavanonts Charoen Pokphand Group, also plans to offer new shares via a rights issue on the basis of seven new shares for 10 existing shares, one of the sources said.

McDonalds comparable May sales up, but US falls

McDonald's reported better-than-expected global sales at established restaurants in May, helped by strong demand in China,

but sales in the US continued to fall. McDonald's, which has not reported a gain in US comparable -store sales since October, said sales in the US fell 1% in May. Analysts polled by Consensus Metrix had expected sales to rise 0.1%. The US accounted for 31% of McDonald's revenue in 2013. The company does not break out sales for China. The fast-food giant has been struggling in its home market, where sluggish job and wage growth are constraining spending.

Russia to delay plans to privatise firms again

Russia is putting off the planned privatisation of three companies this year, a government minister was quoted

as saying on Monday,

the latest delay in a programme increasingly held hostage by economic uncertainty linked to the crisis in Ukraine. With the dollar-denominated RTS share index down about 5% and the rouble down 4.3% on the year, weakened by Western sanctions over Russias annexation of Crimea, the government has moved away from earlier deadlines to privatise companies such as Rostelecom. We expect a significant decline in revenues from privatisation, to 170.8 billion roubles ($5 billion), deputy finance minister Tatyana Nesterenko said. The government had hoped to raise 200 billion roubles by selling stakes in state companies this year.

S Korea to beat Japan in per capita income by 2018

South Koreas economy has proved highly immune to market turmoil elsewhere

and will maintain a breakout growth pattern over five

years to catch up

with Japan and

France in per-capita income in purchasing-power terms, Moodys said on Monday. Sustained rapid growth and economic success is a rare phenomenon in the post-World War Two world order, Moodys Investors Service said in a report on

South Koreas economic outlook. There

are near-term risks to growth from rising public-sector debt and growing household debt over the past decade, Moodys

noted, but it said authorities have taken steps do deal with them.