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COVID-19 update for Dec. 1: 656 new cases, 16 more deaths in B.C. | Premier Horgan's popularity remains high – Vancouver Sun

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Fraser Health says the machines can remove viruses and bacteria from a room in as little as 20 minutes.

10:30 a.m. – Tam says older Canadians should be at front of line for vaccine

Chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam says when looking at people experiencing the most severe illness, older Canadians are more at risk than younger Canadians with pre-existing conditions.

She says that suggests after the initial round of vaccines goes to people in high-risk living or work situations, like long-term care centres and hospital staff, the next round of immunizations should be done by age, with the oldest Canadians at the front of the line.

— Canadian Press

8 a.m. – Premier Horgan’s popularity remains high

Despite surging COVID-19 cases in the province, Premier John Horgan continues to maintain a high level of approval among British Columbians.

In a recent Angus Reid poll, conducted Nov. 24-30, 64 per cent of respondents said they approved of Horgan’s performance during the pandemic while 30 per cent disapproved and six per cent were unsure.

Although his popularity among British Columbians has dropped five points since last quarter, Horgan’s approval rating is tied for the highest in country, with Quebec Premier Francois Legault, despite new wave of COVID-19 related physical-distancing and social restrictions in B.C.

7 a.m. – Canadians OK with vaccine wait: pollA new poll suggests most Canadians aren’t currently worried that people in other countries might get a COVID-19 vaccine first.Thirty-seven per cent of respondents to a survey conducted by Leger and the Association for Canadian Studies say they are very concerned that Canada may not receive doses of a new COVID vaccine as early as the United States while 48 per cent say they are not concerned.Ten per cent say they don’t care at all or are not planning to get vaccinated anyway.With the likelihood of multiple vaccines coming on to the market over a period of time, just 28 per cent of respondents said they will take the first vaccine they can get, while 45 per cent say they will wait for other vaccines to become available.The poll suggests that the vast majority of Canadians want people entering Canada to be vaccinated against COVID-19, with 83 per cent of respondents say being vaccinated should be required.The online poll of 1,516 adult Canadians was conducted from Nov. 26 to Nov. 29.– Canadian Press

12 a.m. – Vancouver police issue $7,130 in fines to hosts of four illegal parties

Vancouver police issued just over $7,000 in fines at four different parties over the weekend that were held despite current COVID-19 health orders.

Under current B.C. health orders, social gatherings aren’t permitted with anyone outside of the household bubble. The orders were implemented to cut down on the transmission of COVID-19.

12 a.m. –B.C. posts record 46 deaths over the past three days

B.C. reported 46 deaths between noon Friday and noon Monday and 2,077 new cases of COVID-19.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry also added another 277 cases to B.C.’s total caseload after an earlier accounting mistake was corrected in Fraser Health.

Henry said 36 of the deaths over the previous three days were in residents of long-term health care facilities.

Between noon Friday and noon Saturday there were 750 cases reported, 731 between noon Saturday and noon Sunday and 596 between noon Sunday and noon Monday.

12 a.m. – Another vaccine candidate submitted to Health Canada for approval

Federal Health Minister Patty Hajdu says Johnson & Johnson has submitted its COVID-19 vaccine candidate for Health Canada’s approval.

It’s the fourth potential vaccine sent for assessment in Canada and the first that would require one dose to confer immunity instead of two.

Health Canada has been examining vaccine candidates from Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca since October, when those companies sent partial data on their drugs for what’s called a “rolling review.”

If the Johnson & Johnson vaccine meets Health Canada’s standards for safety and effectiveness, the Canadian government says it has a deal to buy 10 million doses and an option on up to 28 million more.

— Canadian Press

12 a.m. – Liberals to post $381B deficit as debt levels as percentage of economy surge higher

The Liberal government expects to post a $381-billion deficit in 2021, not including a new pool of stimulus funds announced on Monday that will put further strain on Ottawa’s finances as pandemic spending continues to climb.

Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland tabled the updated figures in her fiscal update, which showed the deficit rising still higher than Ottawa’s earlier projection of $343 billion in 2020-21.

The Liberals on Monday also promised another $70 billion to $100 billion over the next three years in stimulus measures, but declined to outline the details of the new spending, saying it was “highly dependent on the evolving health and economic situation” in Canada.


LOCAL RESOURCES for COVID-19 information

Here are a number of information and landing pages for COVID-19 from various health and government agencies.

B.C. COVID-19 Symptom Self-Assessment Tool

Vancouver Coastal Health – Information on Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)

HealthLink B.C. – Coronavirus (COVID-19) information page

B.C. Centre for Disease Control – Novel coronavirus (COVID-19)

Government of Canada – Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): Outbreak update

World Health Organization – Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak

–with files from The Canadian Press

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GameStop shares rally for another day, as total volume exceeds number of tradeable shares – The Globe and Mail

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A GameStop store in New York on Jan. 27, 2021.

NICK ZIEMINSKI/Reuters

A battle between small investors mobilizing in online discussion groups and professional investors who traditionally dictate market moves is playing out among a number of formerly low-profile stocks, which are soaring for no discernable reason.

Amazingly, the small investors appear to be winning – so far.

In a previously unseen frenzy of trading that has attracted the attention of the White House and the Securities and Exchange Commission, the shares of video-game retailer GameStop Corp. surged to a fresh intraday high of US$380 on Wednesday, up as much 157 per cent during the day and marking an 1,800-per-cent increase over the past two weeks.

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The gains comes as seemingly amateur investors mobilize in stock chatrooms to organize buying campaigns of stocks, not only to make quick profits but also in a bid to take on hedge funds and other money managers, some of whom are short-sellers who profit when share prices drop.

GameStop has emerged as the one of the most discussed and widely traded stocks in the world as individual investors increasingly show their collective power in the stock market, often with small bets, turning the tables on institutional investors that usually dominate stock trading. Other former sleepy stocks that largely traded without much fanfare are also emerging with sudden and mysterious bursts of their own.

BlackBerry share craze could yield windfall for CEO John Chen

Fairfax poised to record large gains as BlackBerry shares soar

Why did BlackBerry’s stock triple despite absolutely nothing happening? Over-hyped Reddit posts

BlackBerry Ltd. rose 32.7 per cent in New York, for a total gain of more than 160 per cent over the past five trading days. AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc., a U.S.-based movie theatre owner beset by few releases and closed cinemas, rose 301 per cent on Wednesday.

Michael Burry of Scion Capital, an early investor in the company, on Tuesday called the GameStop rally “unnatural, insane, and dangerous,” in a tweet.

The White House press secretary said that Janet Yellen, the U.S. Treasury Secretary, is monitoring the situation. The SEC said in a statement that it is “aware of and actively monitoring the on-going market volatility in the options and equities markets,” according to MarketWatch.

The stock market is now valuing GameStop at US$24-billion, up from just US$1.4-billion two weeks ago.

Equally baffling is the number of GameStop shares trading hands: Volume exceeded 90 million shares on Wednesday, easily eclipsing the number of tradeable shares and implying that amateur investors are simply flipping the stock in great quantities in the hope of scoring easy gains.

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“This is why the definition of an efficient market is really, really elusive. It’s slippery,” said Laurence Booth, CIT chair in structured finance at Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto.

“It doesn’t necessarily mean that [investors] are clever or fully informed. For whatever reason, they believe that the stock price is going up,” Mr. Booth said.

Some U.S. and Canadian online trading platforms offered by Robinhood, Charles Schwab, Royal Bank of Canada and Toronto Dominion Bank experienced brief outages owing to heavy trading activity. TD Ameritrade also halted some transactions.

GameStop’s remarkably swift rise to the world’s most heavily traded stock has little to do with any change in its fundamental performance. Earlier this month, the Texas-based company reported that total comparable store sales for the holiday period increased 4.8 per cent over the same nine-week period last year.

The company has suspended financial guidance owing to the uncertainties surrounding the pandemic. Analysts who cover the stock have an average price target (where they believe the shares will be trading within 12 months) of just US$11 – a fraction of Wednesday’s high point.

Instead, the frenetic activity appears to be driven by momentum-chasing investors congregating in online forums such as Reddit’s WallStreetBets, throwing dispersions on sophisticated Wall Street professionals, bragging about their success and proclaiming trades at ever-higher prices.

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These chatroom investors appear particularly interested in stocks with a high level of interest among short-sellers, some of whom are complaining that they are being threatened and harassed.

Short-sellers borrow stocks and then sell them in anticipation that share prices will drop. If share prices rise, though, these investors face unlimited losses, forcing them to buy back the shares they had borrowed and sold – sending share prices even higher in what’s known as a short squeeze.

The pain among short-sellers is becoming plain to see. Melvin Capital, a hedge fund that recently received a US$3-billion capital infusion, closed out its short position in GameStop on Tuesday afternoon, according to CNBC.

Andrew Left of Citron Research, a short-seller who had previously argued that GameStop shares would fall from US$40 to US$20, said in a video post on Wednesday that he had covered his short sales at a 100-per-cent loss, even as he argued that GameStop shares will eventually drop sharply.

“But I have respect for the market,” Mr. Left said.

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Reddit community WallStreetBets squeezes short sellers – ABC News

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[unable to retrieve full-text content]

  1. Reddit community WallStreetBets squeezes short sellers  ABC News
  2. 2 short sellers admit defeat, bail out at huge loss as GameStop share surge hits 1000%  CBC.ca
  3. In battle over GameStop shares, two big players flinch  CTV News
  4. Opinion: Why did BlackBerry’s stock triple despite absolutely nothing happening? Over-hyped Reddit posts  The Globe and Mail
  5. Explainer: How retail traders squeezed Wall Street for bets against GameStop  Reuters
  6. View Full coverage on Google News



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France's Sanofi to help rival Pfizer-BioNTech make vaccines – Yahoo Canada Finance

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GlobeNewswire

Seer Announces Pricing of Upsized Public Offering of Common Stock

REDWOOD CITY, Calif., Jan. 27, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Seer, Inc., a life sciences company commercializing a disruptive new platform for proteomics, today announced the pricing of an underwritten public offering of 3,750,000 shares of Class A common stock (1,650,000 of which are being offered for sale by Seer and 2,100,000 are being offered for sale by selling stockholders of Seer) at a public offering price of $67.00 per share. In addition, the selling stockholders of Seer have granted the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase up to 562,500 additional shares of Class A common stock at the public offering price, less underwriting discounts and commissions. The offering is expected to close on or about February 1, 2021, subject to satisfaction of customary closing conditions. Seer will not receive any proceeds from the sale of shares in the offering by selling stockholders. J.P. Morgan, Morgan Stanley, BofA Securities and Cowen are acting as lead book-running managers for the offering. Registration statements relating to the shares being sold in this offering were declared effective by the Securities and Exchange Commission on January 27, 2021. The offering is being made only by means of a prospectus, copies of which may be obtained, when available, from: J.P. Morgan Securities LLC, c/o Broadridge Financial Solutions, 1155 Long Island Avenue, Edgewood, New York 11717, via telephone: +1 (866) 803-9204, or by emailing prospectus-eq_fi@jpmchase.com; Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC, Attention: Prospectus Department, 180 Varick Street, 2nd Floor, New York, NY 10014; BofA Securities, NC1-004-03-43, 200 North College Street, 3rd Floor, Charlotte, NC 28255-0001, Attention: Prospectus Department, or by email at dg.prospectus_requests@bofa.com; and Cowen and Company, LLC, c/o Broadridge Financial Solutions, 1155 Long Island Avenue, Edgewood, NY 11717, via telephone: +1 (833) 297-2926, or by emailing PostSaleManualRequests@broadridge.com. This press release shall not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy these securities, nor shall there be any sale of these securities in any state or jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to the registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such state or other jurisdiction. About Seer Seer is a life sciences company focused on enabling exceptional scientific outcomes by commercializing transformative products that will drive breakthrough ideas by unlocking the deep, unbiased biological information that can make them a reality. Seer is developing its Proteograph Product Suite, which is an integrated solution consisting of consumables, automation instrumentation and proprietary software that performs deep, unbiased proteomics analysis at scale in a matter of hours. Seer designed the Proteograph to be efficient and easy-to-use, leveraging widely adopted laboratory instrumentation to provide a decentralized solution broadly available to life sciences researchers. Seer’s Proteograph Product Suite is for research use only and is not intended for diagnostic procedures. Forward-Looking StatementsThis press release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, as amended. Such forward-looking statements are based on Seer’s beliefs and assumptions and on information currently available to it on the date of this press release. Forward-looking statements may involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause Seer’s actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. These statements include but are not limited to statements regarding statements regarding the timing of the proposed public offering and the intended use of proceeds generated from the offering. These and other risks are described more fully in Seer’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) and other documents that Seer subsequently files with the SEC from time to time. Except to the extent required by law, Seer undertakes no obligation to update such statements to reflect events that occur or circumstances that exist after the date on which they were made. Investor ContactCarrie Mendivilinvestor@seer.bio

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