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Stocks that saw action on Monday

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A roundup of some of the North American equities making moves in both directions today

On the rise

Shares of Hudsons Bay Co. (HBC-T) were up over 9.5 per cent after executive chairman Richard Baker agreed to boost his bid for the iconic retailer, winning the backing of dissenting shareholder Catalyst Capital Group. and likely ensuring the company will go private later this year.

The new offer of $11 per share in cash tops the previous, purportedly “best and final” offer of $10.30. In a late-night announcement Friday, Catalyst Capital Group Inc. said it will vote in favour of the new deal.

Hudson’s Bay shares closed at $9.88 a share Friday on the Toronto Stock Exchange, before the Catalyst agreement with Hudson’s Bay was announced.

– David Milstead and Jeffrey Jones

Roots Corp. (ROOT-T) rose 0.5 per cent after announcing late Friday chief executive Jim Gabel has left the company effective immediately, as the board of directors expressed a need for “renewed leadership.”

The company’s board of directors has appointed Meghan Roach as the retailer’s temporary chief executive. Ms. Roach has served as interim chief financial officer for the company since August and is a previous board member for the retailer.

Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (BBBY-Q) was up 3 per cent after announcing it’s set to sell almost half of its real estate to an affiliate of Oak Street Real Estate Capital in a deal expected to generate US$250-million in net proceeds.

“We are pleased to complete this sale-leaseback transaction,” said president and CEO Mark Tritton. “This marks the first step toward unlocking valuable capital in our business that can be put to work to amplify our plans to build a stronger, more efficient foundation to support revenue growth, financial stability and enhance shareholder value.”

Shares of Boeing Co. (BA-N) increased 0.3 per cent after a Wall Street Journal report that it considering plans to raise more debt to bolster its finances after the grounding of its 737 MAX jet.

The company is also thinking of deferring some capital expenditures, freezing acquisitions and cutting spending on research and development to preserve cash, according to the report.

Air Canada, WestJet push back return of Boeing 737 Max until early spring

Apple Inc. (AAPL-Q) shares rose 0.8 per cent despite brokerage Needham cutting its rating to “buy” from “strong buy” in the wake of its strong performance in 2019.

Analyst Laura Martin did, however, match the Street-high target price for the stock.

On the decline

First Quantum Minerals Ltd. (FM-T) declined 0.2 per cent in the wake of announcing Monday it had adopted a shareholder rights plan, nearly a month after China’s Jiangxi Copper Co Ltd agreed to pay $1.1 billion to become the miner’s largest shareholder.

The rights plan, which comes into force immediately, will ensure that all shareholders are treated fairly in connection with any takeover bid, First Quantum said.

State-backed Jiangxi Copper said in a regulatory filing last month that it would buy Cupric Holdings Ltd from Pangaea Investment Management Ltd. Cupric held around 18% of First Quantum’s issued share capital as of Dec. 9.

First Quantum’s rights plan is subject to ratification by shareholders within six months of its adoption.

Ford Motor Co. (F-N) lost 0.7 per cent after it reported a 1.3-per-cent fall in sales for the fourth quarter in the United States, hurt by declining sales of passenger cars.

The No. 2 U.S. automaker said it sold 601,862 vehicles in the quarter, compared with 609,693 a year earlier

Cal-Main Foods Inc. (CALM-Q) fell 7.8 per cent after its second-quarter 2020 results fell well short of expectations on the Street.

“We continued to experience challenging market conditions for the second quarter of fiscal 2020,” said CEO Dolph Baker. “While our sales volumes remained relatively flat in the second quarter compared to last year, our financial results reflect lower average selling prices compared with the same period of fiscal 2019.

Xerox Holdings Corp. (XRX-N) slipped 1.5 per cent after it said on Monday it has secured US$24-billion in financing for its US$33.5-billion takeover offer for HP Inc. (HPQ-N), a deal that the personal computer maker is opposing.

HP rejected the US$22 per share offer in November saying it “significantly” undervalued the company, following which the printer maker took the offer directly to HP’s shareholders.

Xerox has engaged in “constructive dialog” with many of HP’s largest shareholders, the company’s chief executive officer, John Visentin, said in a letter addressed to HP’s board on Monday.

“My offer stands to meet with you in person, with or without your advisors, to begin negotiating this transaction,” Visentin said.

Shares of HP were up 0.4 per cent.

Harvest Health & Recreation Inc. (HARV-C) slid 5.3 per cent after it announced that it’s negotiating to acquire Interurban Capital Group, Inc., the owner and operator of Have a Heart CC, which has 11 operating dispensaries in California, Washington and Iowa and licenses for seven retail locations in California.

“Preliminary terms contemplate an acquisition price of approximately $87.5-million in Harvest stock and assumption of debt convertible into 205,594 multiple voting shares of Harvest stock, subject to applicable Canadian securities laws,” the company stated.

New York-listed shares of Chinese electric carmaker Nio Inc. (NIO-N) slid 3.7 per cent after reporting higher deliveries in December, compared with the previous month.

Nio said it delivered 3,170 vehicles in December, representing a jump of 25.4 per cent from November.

With files from Brenda Bouw, staff and wires

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Rogers family boardroom drama unlikely to impact deal to buy Shaw

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A boardroom tussle at Rogers Communications Inc is unlikely to hinder its C$20 billion ($16.16 billion) buy of Shaw Communications, analysts said, but the family drama is continuing at one of Canada’s biggest telecoms companies.

The board of Rogers on Thursday voted out Chairman Edward Rogers, son of the late founder Ted Rogers, after he tried to replace Chief Executive Officer Joe Natale with another executive.

Hours later, Edward Rogers said as chair of the Rogers Control Trust, the family-controlled entity that owns the majority of ownership shares in RCI, he would remove the five RCI board directors who acted against him.

Rogers’ move is the latest in a tumultuous period, during which he has been at odds with his sisters and mother, all of whom are also board directors and who backed Natale.

The company said on Friday that it had not received any documentation from its former chair with respect to the attempted removal of directors, and would consult with its lawyers about the legality of Edward Rogers’ move.

“The company is not aware of this mechanism ever having been utilized in respect of a public company in Canada,” Rogers Communications said in a statement.

J.P.Morgan analysts said they hoped the boardroom battle would not overshadow the timeline or approval process of the deal to buy smaller rival Shaw.

“We maintain our base case that Rogers will be able to close its transformative acquisition of Shaw in 1H22 following the divestiture of some or all of Shaw’s wireless business,” J.P.Morgan wrote in a note to investors.

While the company’s bid for Shaw would further boost its position in Canada’s highly concentrated telecoms market, it has attracted scrutiny from multiple government regulators over whether it will decrease competition.

Scotiabank analysts said they expect the deal to get regulatory approvals within the planned timeline of first half of next year.

The structure of the Rogers Control Trust is a unique feature among Canadian companies, said David Brown, a corporate governance consultant.

Normally each family member would control their individual shares, but Ted Rogers’ estate set up the trust to represent all the family members together, meaning the 97.5% of Class A ownership shares are controlled by the family trust vote as one.

The purpose seems to be to “avoid impasses (between family members) that would block any votes from getting through the organization,” Brown said, adding that the structure gives the chair of the trust “some pretty unprecedented powers.”

But, he said, Rogers is still accountable to the family.

“Edward is allowed to do what he’s doing until the rest of the family step in and stop him,” Brown said.

($1 = 1.2377 Canadian dollars)

 

(Reporting by Uday Sampath in Bengaluru; Editing by Sweta Singh and Arun Koyyur)

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Walmart recalling 3,900 bottles of room spray due to possible dangerous bacteria- U.S. CPSC

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Walmart Inc is recalling around 3,900 bottles of its Better Homes and Gardens-branded room spray due to the possible presence of a rare and dangerous bacteria, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) said on Friday.

The U.S. Centers for  Disease Control and Prevention has been investigating a cluster of four confirmed cases of melioidosis including two deaths in the country, although the source of these four infections has not been confirmed, the CPSC said.

 

(Reporting by Praveen Paramasivam in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya Soni)

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Evergrande Faces Make-or-Break Weekend for Bond Payment – Bloomberg Markets and Finance

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