Anadarko Petroleum: Shell and Exxon as the M&A Interest

Just as an update to the technical argument earlier this afternoon, it seems it is worth keeping in mind the alleged M&A interest around Anadarko Petroleum. It is said that oil & gas giants Shell (LON:RDSB), and Exxon (NYSE:XOM) are running the rule over Anadarko, especially after recent favourable results.

apclogo

The theoretical take out price would be between $80-$90 a share, something which would make sense if nothing else as a premium over the current share price. Otherwise the technical target of $70 looks achievable, especially with ongoing oil price firmness, and the latest strong price action for Anadarko stock.

Disclaimer
Zakmir.com is a purely journalistic website – Zak Mir is a member of the National Union of Journalists. There is no intention here of providing financial advice. It is recommended you seek an independent professional opinion before deciding whether or not to take any action with regard to anything written here.

Anadarko Petroleum: Technical Smoke could be a sign of Fundamental Fire

Just a quick look at Anadarko Petroleum, always a company which fitted the bill as far as M&A speculation is concerned. Part of the reason one might be fishing around here currently is the way that pre open the shares are up 5%, while this gain has come off the foundation of a stonking looking chart.

apclogo

The technical excitement is capped by the way that yesterday’s daily candle is solild green with the stock opening at the low of the day and closing at the high.

apc

The final piece of the jigsaw is the way the stock had previously served up two brief intraday tests of the 50 day moving average at $55.08, something only seen in the strongest of situations. The message at the moment is that provided there is no end of day close back below the 50 day line one would be looking for a top of July 2017 price channel towards $70 over the next 2-3 months.

Disclaimer
Zakmir.com is a purely journalistic website – Zak Mir is a member of the National Union of Journalists. There is no intention here of providing financial advice. It is recommended you seek an independent professional opinion before deciding whether or not to take any action with regard to anything written here.

 

Vectura Attracting Bid Interest From GSK’s Competitors

Besides GlaxoSmithkline (LON:GSK) becoming more keen at this level, around 78p, the weak share price has attracted more M&A interest for Vectura (LON:VEC).

VECLOGO

Previously it appeared 200p a share would be required to take over Vectura against competition from the likes of Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ), Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) and Bristol Meyers (NYSE:BMY). On the smaller side Arena Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ARNA) may want to gatecrash the party.

VECCHART

The fundamental buy argument here which the potential bidders are backing is the way that Vectura is cash rich, debt free, and with potential consisting of the group’s technology and drugs pipeline.

The strategic interest for GSK’s competitors is that they would not wish the UK giant to get a sector edge over them via Vectura.

Given that this is relatively small company around £500m – even a 100% premium is only pocket change for one of the multinationals. The implication is that £1.50 may now be the price than is too good an offer for Vectura shareholders to resist.

Disclaimer
Zakmir.com is a purely journalistic website – Zak Mir is a member of the National Union of Journalists. There is no intention here of providing financial advice. It is recommended you seek an independent professional opinion before deciding whether or not to take any action with regard to anything written here.

 

The Definition of an Auditor: Unaccountable

The Carillion Carcass

The Big Four strike again. Or do they? The latest revelations regarding the run up to the collapse of Carillion are a familiar tale. Presumably this is a tale that was told in the run up to the fall of all the great corporate collapses of the past couple of decades.

Enron

You can bet your bottom dollar that ahead of Enron going down the number crunchers continued with the thumbs up routine, as they would have with Northern Rock and of course the latest oursourcer catastrophe(s).

But I think I have cracked this particular conundrum – Colombo style. Clearly, the art of auditing is backward looking, so if something is awry, e.g. even a few months before a Carillion goes down, this is not a reflection of the auditors.

Teflon

The only problem if one extropolates this logic is that if the art auditing has no aspect of the present or the future, why employ these people? This is especially the case as despite all their obvious skills are good friends at KPMG, PWC et al, are not able to spot fraud, and are hence not liable for any negligence if any has taken place. In fact they are the very definition of Teflon.

Badge of Honour?

But there is more. If auditors have no ability to “smoke detect” issues, and can never do wrong, why exactly are they so deeply involved in the machinary of business and finance? Just about the best I can come up with is that they represent some kind of badge of honour whereby every self respecting entity aspires to have them. The analogy here would be having someone with a title on the board of directors.

Feast

Perhaps the irony of the latest twist in this sorry saga is that it is another bunch of overpaid, underworked and unaccountable (pun intended) / above the law individuals, are those who are attempting to stick the knife as far as our Big Four heroes are concerned. Yes, MPs have suggested in the most poetic way possible that the likes of EY and Deloitte have been “feasting on the carcass.” This is in contrast to MPs whose banqueting habits are normally limited to sources who are alive and kicking: taxpayers.

Big Enough To Fail

Of course, the sadness of all of this is that although it has been shareholders of Carillion who suffered on the hope of the company being “too big to fail”, it will in the end be the taxpayer who foots the bill as they did with the banking crisis.

Humble Pie

What will be interesting as we see the likes of Barclays being prosecuted for alleged misdemeanors in saving itself from a taxpayer bailout, is whether auditors will ever suffer the same fate? While it may be tempting to think so, one would guess that such a scenario is still some years away. After all, it has taken a decade to nab the Barclays bunch. Indeed, it is conceivable that the art of auditing might change or be changed considerably in order that such a nightmare scenario might happen over the next few years to prevent the “profession” ever being in danger of having to swallow humble pie.

Big Pharma looking to make a move on Supernus Pharma (NASDAQ:SUPN)

A few interested parties are looking at acquiring Supernus Pharma, given the decent drugs portfolio. Indeed, it is said to be the next on the shopping list of major players in the sector. One of them is Merck (NYSE:MRK), another AbbVie (NYSE:ABBV), and there are also European names in the mix such as AstraZeneca (LON:AZN) and even Novartis (VTX: NOVN).

supnlogo

It looks as though Supernus is very much buyable commodity, with approaches and offers around the $55 level. But the company is holding out for more – as this is what its advisors have suggested it do. The average analyst valuation is $50, so this is understandable.

supnchart

Looking at the daily chart it can see the stock has been a technical buy in the $35 – $37 zone since September, as if someone was adding / building a stake in that zone. From a technical perspective the sideways price action at and above $35 is underpinning this situation well, suggesting that the next time the stock breaks above its 200 day moving average now at $40.24 we could see a significant positive move. Interestingly enough, the top of a rising trend channel which can be drawn from November 2016 points at $55, coinciding with the alleged takeover price zone.

Disclaimer
Zakmir.com is a purely journalistic website – Zak Mir is a member of the National Union of Journalists. There is no intention here of providing financial advice. It is recommended you seek an independent professional opinion before deciding whether or not to take any action with regard to anything written here.

FTSE 100, National Grid, RELX Group

FTSE 100: Key 7,200 Zone

The internet serves us, or indeed, overserves us with “expert” analysis of major stocks and markets from a technical perspective these days. However, sometimes, as in now, the pitch is queered by those with something to sell, or something to prove.

But in the case of the FTSE 100 the position on the daily chart can be simplified to a broken mildly rising trendline up to 7,200. What the bulls – who are heavily in denial at the moment – really need to dig themselves out of last week’s ambush, is an end of day close back above 7,200 as a minimum.

UK100Daily

Indeed, only back above 7,550 really negates the cliff edge formation of the past week. The equivalent lines in the sand for the Dow and Dax are 24,450 and 12,520, with the view here being that if they are not conquered over the next 24 hours it is probably curtains for the great bull run. Keep in mind the word “if”, even though as things stand it looks as though the bulls have a done deal.

National Grid (NG.):

Perhaps the only thing worse than being in one of the most dull stock on the London market, is to be on the wrong side of such a company’s share price. For bulls looking to enjoy a defensive position at a rocky time, this group has not exactly delivered the goods.

ng

Indeed, the present position on the daily chart suggests that even though the stock is horrifically oversold at RSI 16/100, we could still suffer a probe to the floor of the 2016 price channel of 440p. Indeed, there could be a downside overshoot towards 720p – 730p intraday as a worst case scenario. Otherwise, above 740p one would at least hope for a dead cat bounce back to fill the initial February gap to the downside through 780p by the end of this month.

RELX Group (REL):

RELX (what a bad name for a company, or anything else for that matter) is another cliff edge chart with an ultra low RSI, and boasts not one but two unfilled gaps to the downside in the recent past. This should mean we are looking at the selling climax of the recent move, especially with the RSI at 12/100. However, it can be seen from the trajectory of the May price channel floor there is the risk of a further dip towards 1,400p over the next 2-4 weeks.

rel

This is even if after that we are treated to a rebound back towards the former October 2016 peak at 514p soon after that.

Disclaimer

Zakmir.com is a purely journalistic website – Zak Mir is a member of the National Union of Journalists. There is no intention here of providing financial advice. It is  recommended you seek an independent professional opinion before deciding whether or not to take any action with regard to anything written here.

A Three Way M&A Battle For Ashland Global Holdings (NYSE:ASH)

While the stock market and cryptos may be crashing, the world of M&A generally keeps on an even keel. We are reminded of this with reference to Ashland Global Holdings (NYSE:ASH), a $4.5bn speciality chemicals group.

ASHLOGO

It is said to be in the sights of both EU and U.S. groups, but with the UK’s Croda International (LSE:CRODA) the leading contender. In Europe it is Clariant (VTX:CLN) who are in the frame to go for Ashland. For the record of course, the last big deal in the space was the “merger of equals” between Dow Chemical and DuPont last September. The company now known as DowDuPont (NYSE:DWDP) may also be interested in buying Ashland Global. Therefore we are looking at what could be at least a three way battle.

ASH

The mooted takeover price would be $90 plus, something which is believable given the extended bull run in the shares, and the latest solid company results. The recent typical pre-deal share price flushout towards $66 (got rid of those accidentally in the situation and set for a windfall) and a top of 2015 price channel target towards $90 also ties in with the alleged offer zone.

Disclaimer

Zakmir.com is a purely journalistic website – Zak Mir is a member of the National Union of Journalists. There is no intention here of providing financial advice. It is  recommended you seek an independent professional opinion before deciding whether or not to take any action with regard to anything written here.