Monday headlines: Tesla announcing a new leasing plan, Merck reporting earnings, Apple Pay hitting some resistance from retailers, Salesforce moving into health care and Valeant preparing to increase its bid for Allergan.
Electric car maker Tesla Motors (TSLA) announced a new leasing policy on Oct. 25. In conjunction with U.S. Bank (USB), the new lease will lower monthly payments by as much 25%, while also carrying a three-month return policy.
Pharmaceutical company Merck (MRK) said Monday that it earned 31 cents per share in the third quarter on revenue of $10.56 billion. On an adjusted basis, earnings were 90 cents per share. Analysts had expected earnings per share of 88 cents on $10.69 billion in revenue. The company tightened its full-year earnings guidance to a range of $3.46 to $3.50, from a prior range of $3.43 to $3.53. The company received accelerated approval from the FDA in September for Keytruda, a treatment for inoperable melanoma.
Technology giant Apple's (AAPL) new payments program suffered a setback over the weekend when drug retailers Rite-Aid (RAD) and CVS (CVS) turned off the technology in its stores. The two chains weren't among the merchants Apple had listed as Apple Pay participants at launch, but they did have the needed near-field communications-enabled point-of-sale systems. CVS and Rite-Aid are part of a consortium of retailers developing a rival system that uses QR codes.
Cloud computing firm Salesforce.com (CRM) is moving into the healthcare sector. The company is making hey hires and increasing its investment in the space with the hope of producing about $1 billion in yearly revenue in coming years.
The battle for control of drug-maker Allergan (AGN) is heating up again as Valeant Pharmaceuticals (VRX) is signaling a willingness to raise its offer for the company behind Botox. While the company did say it is “prepared to improve its offer” and said the new offer could be worth at least $200 per share, the company did not announce the mix of cash and stock that the new deal would entail.