HomeNewsMarket highlights: Here are four stocks that hit the headlines on Monday

Market highlights: Here are four stocks that hit the headlines on Monday

Ruchi Gupta
  • GlaxoSmithKline has turned down three bids from Unilever for consumer business
  • Pfizer is increasing production of COVID-19 pill in France
  • Semiconductor shortage to persist in 2022 says Nomura analyst

Unilever determined to acquire GlaxoSmithKline’s consumer division

Unilever Plc shares dropped 4% on Monday after it said it would be interested in purchasing GlaxoSmithKline plc’s (NYSE: GSK) consumer business division. GSK has so far turned down three Unilever bids, with the latest bid priced at $68.25B.

Although shareholders are divided on whether Unilever ought to spend more on the deal, the UK-based company believes GSK's consumer division is a "good strategic fit." In addition, this acquisition will offer a growth platform and create a scale for a consolidated portfolio.

Pfizer to ramp up production of COVID-19 pill in France

Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) has announced that it will add a manufacturing facility for its COVID-19 pill in France, which is part of the drugmaker's plan to invest $594 million in the next five years. Pfizer's decision is part of its aim to increase the global supply of paxlovid, a drug that has been proven to be almost 90% effective in reducing hospitalization and death in people at high risk of severe illness, as per clinical studies data.

According to Pfizer, the investment will first focus on active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) production for paxlovid at the Novasep facility in France.

Rio Tinto saw solid demand for products in 2021

Rio Tinto Plc (NYSE: RIO) CEO Jakob Stausholm has indicated that in 2021 the company saw strong demand for its products despite challenging operating conditions that included extended COVID-19 disruptions. Surprisingly, despite the challenges, Stausholm indicated that the company progressed several of its projects, such as the Pilbara replacement mines.

As a result, this underlines the resilience of the business and the flexibility and commitment of its team, governments, and communities. The implementation of the Rio Tinto Safe Production System is seeing positive results, and the company will ramp up this year.

Semiconductor shortage to continue in 2022

The VanECk Semiconductor ETF (NASDAQ: SMH)  ended 2021 with a 45% share gain, and Nomura analyst David Wong is saying that the chip shortage experienced globally is expected to continue. Wong told CNBC's "Squawk Box Asia" that the end to the current semiconductor supply challenges is unlikely this year, but improvements are expected. He said:

"Our view is that the supply issues, at least in electronics, will continue through 2022 in many places but steadily get better. We've seen this in 2021, we see it continuing into 2022. These shortages get cleared up as 2022 progresses and into 2023.”