Hedgefund News Wrap: Week Ending 11/6/2015

“OOPS, I DID IT AGAIN” BRITNEY OR VOLKSWAGEN?

(Wall Street Journal) – Volkswagen continues to behave like a teenager, attempting to sneak out and continuously getting caught. In this case, they have just been caught red handed lying about 800,000 more vehicles.The scandal regarding VW and some 11 million forged emissions tests on its vehicles broke about 5 weeks ago, and of course, there’s more to the story.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has accused VW about violating emissions standards on certain Audi models, its most profitable line, as well as some Porsche models. This is the first that Audi or Porsche has been brought into this mess, as before it was only VW models. The new information has forced them to halt sales of certain Audi models, so there will be less Audi’s topped with red bows this Christmas season.
Remember when VW said only diesel models were tampered with? They lied about that, too. German Transport Minister Alexander Dobrindt said that at least 98,000 of the cars affected aer gasoline-powered.

Read the entire article at Wall Street Journal
More coverage: Business Insider and USA Today

IN A GAME OF DEAL OR NO DEAL, ASTRAZENECA AND ZS PHARMA SAY DEAL!

(New York Times) – Howie Mandel was not present and there were no women strapped with metal briefcases, but AstraZeneca put up $2.7 billion in cash and ZS Pharma took the plunge and said “deal.” The British drug maker, AstraZeneca, said today that it has agree to acquire ZS Pharma, a California-based bio-pharmaceutical company.

Outlined in the agreement, AstraZeneca agrees to pay $90 a share, a 42 percent premium for the American company’s closing price on Thursday. The deal comes at a time when the appetite for new drugs to replace revenue lost as patent protection continues to be lost, leaving AstraZeneca with a great outlook for the future.

“This acquisition complements our strategic focus on cardiovascular and metabolic disease by adding a potential best-in-class treatment to our portfolio of innovative medicines,” Pascal Soriot, the AstraZeneca chief executive, said in a news release.

Read the entire article at New York Times
More coverage: Fox News and Seeking Alpha

SANOFI MAY SELL GENERIC DRUG AND ANIMAL HEALTH BUSINESSES  

(The Wall Street Journal) – Rumors are flying out of Paris today, as Sanofi said it is considering selling its animal health and European generic drug business. The statement came with a warning that should scare investors, as it remarked that they may fall flat over the next two years.

Olivier Brandicourt, who took over as chief executive in April, said he was “exploring all options” for the company’s animal health unit and European generics business, both of which have “limited synergies” with the rest of the group. The company also stated that no meaningful profit growth was expected between 2015 and 2017, as pricing pressure grows in its all-important diabetes market.

Read the entire article at The Wall Street Journal 
More coverage: Nasdaq and Financial Times