Benzinga Before The Bell: Elon Musk’s Kids, Apple’s Potential Security Measure, Covid-19 Vaccine Wastage And Other Top Financial Stories Thursday, July 7 | #ios | #apple | #iossecurity


American Airlines Compensates Pilots Three Times For Trips Cancelled Due To Technical Glitch

  • American Airlines Group Inc’s AAL pilots and its pilots’ union has agreed to triple pay for aviators who were able to drop thousands of July flights because of a scheduling program glitch over the July fourth weekend, reported CNBC.
  • Pilots will also be getting double pay for peak holiday periods.
  • According to the Allied Pilots Association, the scheduling platform glitch prompted pilots to drop 12,000 flights from their schedules.



SAS Airline Cancels Flight On Pilot Shortage, Though Passenger Volume Jumped

  • Several SAS AB SASDF flights were canceled as around 1,000 pilots walked out at its main SAS Scandinavia arm, overshadowing a traffic surge during June.
  • Reuters reported that collapsed talks between the airline and pilots over a new collective bargaining agreement prompted a strike.
  • During June, more than 1.9 million passengers traveled with SAS, an increase of approximately 220% compared to the same month last year.

Disney Continues To Consolidate Its International Division – Read How

  • Walt Disney Company DIS picked Kristen Finney to lead content curation for its international division, pushing to make more regional content for streaming.
  • As EVP, Finney will work on building a team to track and evaluate “content needs and appropriateness for Disney+ and Star/Star+.”
  • Finney will oversee content strategy in the regions for Disney+ and adult-skewing vertical Star, along with linear channels, acting as a centralized hub for international content acquisition information, cross-regional licensing opportunities, content slates, and pipelines,

US Commits $969M Towards Airport Infrastructure Turnaround

  • U.S. Transportation Department granted $968.6 million to 85 airport projects to fire up the country’s aging aviation infrastructure.
  • Some projects will fund new terminals, boost gate capacity, add air traffic control towers, jet bridges, new bathrooms, baggage claim belts, and reconfigure security checkpoints.
  • Congress approved the five-year $5 billion airport terminal grant program in November as part of the $1 trillion infrastructure law.


Wall Street Journal

Merck’s Potential Buyout Of Seagen Expected Within Next Few Weeks

  • Merck & Co Inc MRK is in advanced talks to acquire Seagen Inc SGEN, and an agreement on a purchase is expected in the next few weeks, Wall Street Journal reported citing people familiar with the matter.
  • The potential deal could be worth roughly $40 billion or more.
  • The report added that the companies are discussing a price for Seagen above $200 a share.

Drugmakers, Health Authorities Discarding Several Million COVID-19 Vaccine Doses

  • Wall Street Journal reported that governments, drugmakers, and vaccination sites are discarding several unused COVID-19 vaccine doses amid declining demand.
  • Packaging in multiuse vials containing from five to 20 doses has also been partly responsible for the wastage.
  • The vials generally must be used within about 12 hours of opening or the remaining doses discarded.

Blackstone Makes $400M Investment In Environmental Commodities Exchange Xpansiv

  • Blackstone Inc BX commits to invest $400 million in Xpansiv Limited, the market-infrastructure platform for global carbon and environmental commodities.
  • Xpansiv helps investors to trade in sustainable assets, including carbon offsets and renewable-energy credits, WSJ reported.
  • It also lets investors swap offsets linked to green projects such as preserving trees, credits companies receive for buying clean power, and oil and gas contracts accounting for the carbon footprint.



Microsoft Cloud Veteran Official Quits After Reports Of Verbal Abuse To Staff

  • Microsoft Corp MSFT cloud VP Tom Keane’s LinkedIn post disclosed his departure from the tech giant after 21 years.
  • Keane’s LinkedIn post read, “taking the next step in my career to build on the world’s computer.”
  • The departure follows a report accusing Keane of verbally abusing staff, Bloomberg reports.
  • Keane reportedly made an employee cry in a public meeting earning the nickname “King Tom” behind his back.

As Tesla Faces Trial Over 2018 Fatal Crash, Prospective Jurors Profess To Being’ Big Elon Musk Fans’

  • Electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla, Inc. TSLA is facing a case in a Florida court over a fatal crash involving one of its vehicles. Ahead of the trial, it has come to light that prospective jurors were huge Elon Musk fans, Bloomberg reported.
  • The report noted that one of the prospective jurors, a middle-aged woman, said she was a big fan of Musk in response to a query by the judge about their opinions about EVs.
  • Two other prospective male jurors also said they were fans of the Tesla CEO, with one — an auto-service technician looking to join a local Tesla service center — saying that Musk has done a lot to improve technology.



Donald Trump Could Be Subpoenaed With Associates For 2020 Election Interference: Fulton County DA

  • Former President Donald Trump and his associates could be subpoenaed before a grand jury looking into interference with the outcome of the 2020 Presidential Election in Georgia.
  • Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis did not rule out the possibility of subpoenaing Trump and his associates, reported NBC.
  • “We’ll just have to see where the investigation leads us,” said Willis, according to NBC.

Senate Finance Committee Probe Reveals How AbbVie Exploits Offshore Subsidiaries To Avoid Tax Bills

  • Provisions in the 2017 Republican tax law allow AbbVie Inc ABBV to generate most of its sales in the U.S. while reporting virtually no income in the U.S. for tax purposes.
  • Data obtained by the Committee shows that AbbVie reports virtually no income in the U.S. for tax purposes.
  • In 2020, over 75% of AbbVie’s sales were made to American consumers, yet only 1% of AbbVie’s income was reported in the U.S. for tax purposes.

Shiba Inu (SHIB) Buying Activity Surges To 94% On Coinbase

  • Trading activity for meme coin Shiba Inu SHIB/USD on Coinbase Global Inc COIN was dominated by “buy orders” on Wednesday.
  • According to data from Coinbase, a majority of traders on the exchange were buying SHIB over the last 24 hours.
  • Orderbook data shows that 94% of traders on Coinbase increased their net position in SHIB as the token traded between $0.00001029 and $0.00001059.

FDA Authorizes Pharmacists to Prescribe Pfizer’s COVID-19 Therapy

  • The FDA authorized state-licensed pharmacists to prescribe, with certain limitations, Pfizer Inc’s PFE COVID-19 pill to eligible patients to help improve access to the treatment.
  • “Since Paxlovid must be taken within five days after symptoms begin, authorizing state-licensed pharmacists to prescribe Paxlovid could expand access to timely treatment for some patients,” Patrizia Cavazzoni, director for the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, said in a statement.
  • The agency said patients who tested positive for COVID-19 should bring their health records for the pharmacists to review for kidney and liver problems.

Alibaba Snaps Winning Streak, Nio, EV Peers Slip: What’s Dragging Hong Kong Stocks Today

  • Honk Kong stocks were trading lower early on Thursday, with most U.S.-listed Chinese tech and electric vehicle shares slipping into the red, despite positive cues from global markets.
  • Tech Retreat: Alibaba Group Holding Ltd BABA fell after three straight sessions of gains. The stock recently picked up momentum amid upbeat analyst views about the company’s June-quarter earnings and on hopes of easing regulatory crackdowns in China.
  • Inc. JD fell again on Thursday, while technology and entertainment conglomerate Tencent Holdings Ltd TCEHY ticked up.

Apple Introduces’ Groundbreaking Security Capability’ For Some Users: Here’s What It’s All About

  • Apple Inc AAPL is previewing a measure to protect people who face sophisticated cyberattacks.
  • The Tim Cook-led company said it is “previewing a groundbreaking security capability” for users targeted by cyberattacks from private companies that develop state-sponsored mercenary software, according to a statement on Wednesday.
  • “Lockdown Mode” is set to be released this fall along with iOS 16, iPadOS16, and macOS Ventura, according to Apple.

Biden Speaks To Brittney Griner’s Wife Cherelle: He’s Pursuing ‘Every Avenue’ To Bring WNBA Star Home From Russia

  • Cherelle Griner released a statement Wednesday following a phone call with President Joe Biden and VP Kamala Harris saying, “I am grateful to the both of them for the time they spent with me and for the commitment they expressed to getting BG home.”
  • Cherelle Griner had been seeking a meeting or some form of relevant contact with the White House since her WNBA superstar wife was arrested at a Moscow airport on February 17 for allegedly having cannabis oil in her suitcase.
  • Following Monday’s direct, if frustrated, plea to Biden on “CBS Mornings” with Gayle King, Cherelle Griner finally got a direct response from the President.

Elon Musk Had Secret Twins With Neuralink Exec Before Having 2nd Child With Grimes, Report Says

  • Tesla Inc TSLA CEO Elon Musk reportedly fathered twins with Neuralink executive Shivon Zilis last year.
  • In April, Musk and Zilis filed a petition to change the children’s names to “have their father’s last name and contain their mother’s last name as part of their middle name,” according to documents seen by Insider, reported Rolling Stone.
  • The children were born just before Musk and his former partner and musical artist, Claire Elise Boucher, better known as Grimes, had a child in December.

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