Mubadala has invested $100 billion in U.S., eyes China: deputy CEO

© Reuters.  Mubadala has invested $  100 billion in U.S., eyes China: deputy CEO © Reuters. Mubadala has invested $ 100 billion in U.S., eyes China: deputy CEO

ABU DHABI (Reuters) – Abu Dhabi state investor Mubadala Investment Co [MUDEV.UL] has invested $ 100 billion in the United States, more than 40% of its roughly $ 240 billion portfolio, Deputy CEO Waleed al-Muhairi said on Tuesday.

“What that tells you is that from our perspective the risk reward equation works in the United States,” he said at the SALT conference in Abu Dhabi, adding that the bulk of the investments are direct, with a small portion indirectly invested through funds.

He said the remaining part of the portfolio is almost equally split between three regions – the United Arab Emirates, Europe and Asia.

Muhairi said Mubadala has invested $ 2 billion in China in 15-16 sectors from its $ 10 billion UAE China fund and could step up investments in the mainland.

“China is the UAE’s largest trading partner, it is an important economic relationship for us,” he said.

Mubadala would want to participate in some “shape, way or form” in the growth of China, which could become the largest economy in the world, Muhairi said.

Technology is a focus for Mubadala, he added.

Mubadala has invested $ 15 billion in Softbank’s (T:) Vision Fund I and recently announced plans to invest $ 250 million through two funds in technology firms in the Middle East and North Africa.

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‘Moving right along’? Shares nudge up after Trump trade talk

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO:  Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange shortly after the opening bell in New York © Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange shortly after the opening bell in New York

By Tom Wilson

LONDON (Reuters) – World shares ticked up on Friday, buoyed by comments from U.S. President Donald Trump that talks aimed at dialing down the damaging trade war with China were “moving right along”.

Trump’s relatively upbeat tone in comments on Thursday was enough to encourage riskier bets by investors, despite a lack of agreement over whether existing tariffs should be dropped as part of an initial deal to ease the long standoff.

European shares, including the broader Euro , gained 0.4% by late morning, with indexes in Frankfurt and Paris up by similar amounts. Banks, technology firms and retail companies led the gains.

Wall Street futures were set to open in positive territory, too, with gains projected between 0.3%-0.4%.

The cautiously buoyant mood mirrored an appetite for riskier bets in Asia, where MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.6%.

The MSCI world equity index, which tracks shares in 47 countries, added 0.2% to 555.07 points, not far off a record high of 550.63 hit last January but still on track for a weekly fall.

Investors were hoping the two sides can reach a compromise to at least avoid their worst fear: that the United States goes ahead with its final batch of tariffs on about $ 156 billion of Chinese exports, due to take effect on Dec. 15.

Trump’s remarks came after Chinese officials reiterated demands that some U.S. tariffs be rolled back if the sides are to reach a so-called phase one deal.

Markets had expected the sides to seal the initial deal in November. Instead, investors are nervously watching the approaching deadline for the new U.S. levies.

“The difficulty with this is it’s very difficult to time and to trade,” said Jeremy Gatto, a multi-asset investment manager at Unigestion. “We are relatively favorable towards riskier assets in general – but with hedges.”

Gatto said those hedges include currencies such as the U.S. dollar, Japanese yen and Australian dollar, as well as options.

Investors have already taken precautions against a possible slide in stocks by buying put options, with demand for put options to hedge exposure to the S&P500 index climbing in recent days.

In one sign of detente, China said it would waive import tariffs imposed last year on some U.S. soybean and pork shipments. Beijing is rushing to source more meat to fill a gap in protein supplies.

China stocks posted their biggest weekly advance in nearly two months, with the blue-chips up 0.6%.

Investors were looking out for U.S. jobs data, due out at 1330 GMT. The non-farm payrolls report is expected to show 180,000 new jobs were created in November, up from 128,000 a month earlier.

Signs of buoyancy in the labor market would soothe anxiety over the impact of the trade war.

“Markets are in consolidation phase,” said Salman Ahmed, chief investment strategist at Lombard Odier. “It’s wait and watch for first, how does the non-farm payrolls look and, more importantly, the Dec. 15 tariff deadline.”

In other economic data, German industrial output fell unexpectedly in October, pointing to persistent weakness in the backbone of the economy. Berlin said, however, that new orders and business expectations suggest output may stabilize.

While markets have largely priced in the view that the world economy has dodged the bullet of recession, there are still signs of fragility in many major economies.

OIL SKIDS

Oil prices steadied and were set for weekly gains ahead of a meeting of OPEC and its allies later in the day, where the grouping is expected to formally agree to more output cuts in early 2020.

Sources told Reuters that OPEC+ agreed to a 500,000 barrel per day cut, with the group due to next meet in March.

futures were down 0.3%, or 18 cents, at $ 63.21 a barrel, a retreat from earlier gains.

The agreement coincided with the initial public offering of state oil firm Saudi Aramco, which was priced at the top of its range and raised $ 25.6 billion in the world’s biggest IPO.

In currencies, the British pound lost 0.3% but was still set for its best week since October. It has gained 1.5% against the dollar this week.

Sterling had spiked to a seven-month high of $ 1.3166 on Thursday on bets that next week’s election will give the Conservative party the majority it needs to deliver Brexit, ending near-term uncertainty.

The pound last stood at $ 1.328. It hit 2-1/2-year highs versus the euro.

Against a basket of currencies the dollar has dropped every day this week, falling to a one-month low of 97.356 on Thursday. The index was up a smidgeon at 97.460, and has lost nearly 1% this week.

For Reuters Live Markets blog on European and UK stock markets, please click on: [LIVE/]

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Wall Street falls after U.S. tariffs on metal imports, soft PMI data

By Arjun Panchadar

(Reuters) – Wall Street fell on Monday after President Donald Trump said he would restore tariffs on metal imports from Brazil and Argentina, while weak domestic manufacturing data fanned worries of a slowing economy in the wake of the U.S.-China trade war.

The U.S. economy’s manufacturing sector contracted for a fourth straight month in November, as new order volumes slid back to around their lowest level since 2012. Construction spending also unexpectedly fell in October.

The figures were in sharp contrast to recent economic indicators that had reassured investors of a resilient domestic economy. Global markets had also cheered an unexpected rebound in Chinese manufacturing earlier in the day. [MKTS/GLOB]

However, Trump’s tweet about restoring tariffs on U.S. steel and aluminum imports from Brazil and Argentina dampened the mood and prompted officials in the two South American countries to seek explanations.

“The concern here is what kind of retaliatory response those countries might have, let alone sort of a re-escalation of these tariff wars in the midst of trying to resolve one,” said Mark Luschini, chief investment strategist at Janney Montgomery Scott in Philadelphia.

The news sent shares of U.S. steel makers including U.S. Steel Corp (N:) and AK Steel Holding Corp (N:) up 3% and 7%, respectively.

The gains were an exception in a wider selloff, with 10 of the 11 major S&P 500 sectors trading lower. The technology sector () was off 1.3% and was the biggest drag on the benchmark index.

Hopes of an imminent “phase one” trade U.S.-China trade deal and upbeat U.S. economic data sent Wall Street to record highs early last week.

Retail stocks including Target Corp (N:) and Walmart Inc (N:) were in focus, with Cyber Monday sales expected to hit a record following $ 11.6 billion in online sales on Thanksgiving and Black Friday.

At 10:27 a.m. ET the Dow Jones Industrial Average () was down 161.38 points, or 0.58%, at 27,890.03, the S&P 500 () was down 22.50 points, or 0.72%, at 3,118.48 and the Nasdaq Composite () was down 99.57 points, or 1.15%, at 8,565.90.

Among other stocks, Roku Inc (O:) dropped 16.6% as Morgan Stanley (NYSE:) downgraded the video streaming device maker’s shares to “underweight”.

Declining issues outnumbered advancers for a 2.13-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and a 2.34-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq. The S&P index recorded 16 new 52-week highs and two new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 50 new highs and 18 new lows.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

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Texas chemical fire rages for second day, thousands evacuated

By Michelle Conlin

(Reuters) – A major fire at a Texas petrochemical plant continued to burn for a second day on Thursday, with the 60,000 people forced to evacuate still uncertain as to whether they could return home in time to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday.

The fiery blast inside a distillation column at the Port Neches, Texas, TPC Group facility on Wednesday injured three workers, blew locked doors off their hinges and spewed a plume of toxic chemicals for miles (kilometers).

The plant manufactures petrochemicals used to make rubber and resins, and the volatile organic compounds in the explosion’s smoke can lead to eye, nose and throat irritation, shortness of breath, headaches and nausea, the pollution regulator Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) said. No impact to water was reported.

The plant, 90 miles (145 km) east of Houston, has a long history of environmental violations and has been out of compliance with federal clean air laws for years, according to the Texas Tribune and state records; it was also declared a high priority violator by the Environmental Protection Agency.

State agencies are monitoring air quality. Police are patrolling the evacuated communities to prevent looting.

TPC spokesperson Sara Cronin said that it was uncertain when the fire would be extinguished or the chemicals burned off but pointed the public to the company’s emergency response website at www.portnechesresponse.com.

The explosion was the fourth major petrochemical fire in the region this year.

Early on Wednesday morning, people more than 30 miles (48 km) away from the complex were shaken awake by the 1 a.m. CT (0700 GMT) blast, sources familiar with the fire-fighting and rescue operations said.

The blast collapsed a roof over the plant’s control room, sending workers fleeing, and damaged its fire-fighting system.

Some homes close to the plant also sustained heavy damage, and police went door-to-door early in the morning to check if residents were injured, said the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

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Amazon opens pop-up store on China’s Pinduoduo until year-end

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The logo of Amazon is seen at the company logistics centre in Boves © Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The logo of Amazon is seen at the company logistics centre in Boves

By Brenda Goh

SHANGHAI (Reuters) – Amazon.com Inc (O:) on Monday said it will open a pop-up store on Chinese e-commerce platform Pinduoduo Inc (O:) that will run until the end of December and carry a selection of about 1,000 products from overseas.

The move, which was initially reported by Reuters on Sunday, points to how the U.S. firm’s China strategy is evolving after it decided earlier this year to stop operating a marketplace in the country for domestic-selling merchants.

In April, it said it would instead increase its focus on selling goods from abroad to Chinese buyers and on its other businesses in the country like cloud services.

Amazon had found it difficult to compete with entrenched, home-grown players such as Alibaba Group Holding Ltd’s (N:) Tmall and its rival marketplace from JD.com Inc (O:). In a sign of Tmall’s dominance, Amazon opened an online store on the platform in 2015.

Its decision to open a store on Pinduoduo, however, points to how the four-year-old startup has disrupted Alibaba and JD.com’s dominance of China’s e-commerce market through its popularity with China’s rural residents.

Competition between the three firms have heated up in recent months and Pinduoduo, which woos customers with deep discounts and group-buying deals, suffered an $ 11 billion slump in value last week after it posted a much wider-than-expected quarterly loss that stemmed from efforts to fight rivals with heavy subsidies.

“The Amazon Global Store pop-up store on Pinduoduo provides customers with a curated selection of about 1,000 overseas products with competitive prices, authenticity guarantee and convenient shipping,” an Amazon spokeswoman said in a statement.

“We look forward to enabling customers to enjoy cross-border shopping through this store, in addition to more deals and tens of millions of products available on z.cn,” she said, referring to the website Amazon.cn.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

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Australia stocks lower at close of trade; S&P/ASX 200 down 0.74%

© Reuters.  Australia stocks lower at close of trade; S&P/ASX 200 down 0.74% © Reuters. Australia stocks lower at close of trade; S&P/ASX 200 down 0.74%

Investing.com – Australia stocks were lower after the close on Thursday, as losses in the , and sectors led shares lower.

At the close in Sydney, the lost 0.74%.

The best performers of the session on the were Monadelphous Group Ltd (ASX:), which rose 3.00% or 0.480 points to trade at 16.500 at the close. Meanwhile, Southern Cross Media Group Ltd (ASX:) added 2.81% or 0.025 points to end at 0.915 and Metcash Ltd (ASX:) was up 2.36% or 0.070 points to 3.040 in late trade.

The worst performers of the session were Polynovo Ltd (ASX:), which fell 6.09% or 0.120 points to trade at 1.850 at the close. Webjet Ltd (ASX:) declined 5.98% or 0.770 points to end at 12.110 and Mineral Resources Ltd (ASX:) was down 5.50% or 0.810 points to 13.920.

Falling stocks outnumbered advancing ones on the Sydney Stock Exchange by 676 to 443 and 303 ended unchanged.

The , which measures the implied volatility of S&P/ASX 200 options, was up 3.61% to 11.627.

Gold Futures for December delivery was down 0.29% or 4.25 to $ 1469.95 a troy ounce. Elsewhere in commodities trading, Crude oil for delivery in January fell 0.25% or 0.14 to hit $ 56.87 a barrel, while the January Brent oil contract fell 0.27% or 0.17 to trade at $ 62.23 a barrel.

AUD/USD was down 0.04% to 0.6800, while AUD/JPY fell 0.05% to 73.83.

The US Dollar Index Futures was down 0.01% at 97.800.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

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Eager Saudis prepare to snap up stakes in ‘crown jewel’ Aramco

© Reuters. A billboard display an advert for Saudi Aramco in the streets in Riyadh © Reuters. A billboard display an advert for Saudi Aramco in the streets in Riyadh

By Marwa Rashad

RIYADH (Reuters) – “No voice is louder than that of the Aramco IPO, the largest IPO on earth,” declared Ahmed al-Arfaj, a Saudi Arabian TV talk show host, drumming up demand for what could be the world’s biggest initial public offering.

State oil giant Saudi Aramco began its repeatedly delayed share sale on Sunday, offering retail investors and institutions a stake in the world’s most profitable company through a listing on Riyadh’s Tadawul bourse.

Saudis clamoring to own part of the world’s top oil exporter can go online or to local banks, which have extended working hours to meet high expected demand during a sale process that runs until Nov. 28.

Retail investors will be sold up to 0.5% of Aramco, about $ 8.5 billion worth of shares, in the IPO, which values the company at $ 1.6 trillion to $ 1.7 trillion.

Ahmed Sanad, 37, who signed up himself and his family on Sunday at a Saudi British Bank (SABB) branch in central Riyadh called the IPO “the talk of the town” and “a global event”.

“I don’t think anyone will miss the opportunity,” he told Reuters. “There are no better options at the current time.”

Roadside billboards and shopping mall adverts have trailed the listing for weeks, hailing “Saudi Aramco, soon on Tadawul”. On social media, in cafes and at family gatherings across the country, it has dominated conversations.

The marketing blitz contrasts with the other bumper share sale this month, the secondary listing of Chinese retail titan Alibaba (NYSE:), which is not expected to carry out an advertising campaign for what will be Hong Kong’s first paperless listing.

Abdullah al-Faqeeh, a 29-year-old dentist, said he began saving up to buy shares once de facto Saudi ruler Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman announced the plans nearly four years ago.

“I will invest in the company for the long term,” he told Reuters. “I will get bonus shares, and with the profits I will buy more shares. It is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

LENDING BOOM

Retail investors will be entitled to one bonus Aramco share for every 10 they buy if they hold on to their stock for at least 180 days. Up to 5 million people are expected to participate, local media reports.

Thousands of Saudis were seeking to invest on behalf of their dependents, to increase the number of shares they can buy, two bankers told Reuters.

Saudi banks are also marketing loans, with some offering four times the usual limits, two other financial sources said, adding that they are able to do so as they will hold the stock on behalf of clients so have it as security.

Over the weekend, senior Muslim clerics including royal court adviser Sheikh Abdullah al-Mutlaq declared that investing in Aramco was permissible.

“It (Aramco) is a pillar of the Saudi economy,” Mutlaq, a member of the kingdom’s top clerical body, said on a weekly Friday radio show in response to a caller’s question. “I think even the scholars, we will participate in it.”

RIYADH OIL RUSH

Aramco said on Sunday it plans to sell 1.5% of its shares or about 3 billion shares, at an indicative price range of 30 to 32 riyals, valuing the IPO at as much as 96 billion riyals ($ 25.6 billion) at the top end of the range. It could beat Alibaba’s record $ 25 billion IPO in 2014.

The government has been pushing rich Saudis to invest with cash held abroad, with many viewing it as an opportunity to show their patriotism after a September attack on Aramco facilities that struck at the heart of the kingdom’s energy industry.

Washington and Riyadh blamed regional rival Iran for the attacks, which temporarily cut more than 5% of global oil supply. Tehran has denied any involvement.

“Participating in the Aramco IPO is a national duty for whoever can afford it,” Saudi columnist Anwar Aboalela tweeted.

Another Twitter user, Meshal Althaidy, described Prince Mohammed’s push to take Aramco public – the centerpiece of a reform agenda aimed at weaning the economy off oil – as “a fierce battle” that Saudis should support.

Although some locals think the government is wrong to relinquish even partial control of Aramco, the prospect of holding shares is hard to resist.

“Aramco will be a winning horse,” said Uber (NYSE:) driver Abu Mohsen. “I will subscribe only because of the expected gains but I remain against the sale, especially to foreigners.”

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Biotech-for-hire PeptiDream charts new path and becomes short target

© Reuters. Patrick Reid, President and CEO of PeptiDream Inc, talks with a researcher at the company's laboratory in Kawasaki, Japan © Reuters. Patrick Reid, President and CEO of PeptiDream Inc, talks with a researcher at the company’s laboratory in Kawasaki, Japan

By Rocky Swift

TOKYO (Reuters) – The promise of PeptiDream Inc’s drug-discovery technology and its lucrative research-for-hire contracts have made it a darling of the Tokyo stock market. Now, those gains have made it a target for short-seller Muddy Waters.

The company, which has seen its market value jump fivefold to $ 6 billion over the past four years, is now pivoting its strategy to in-house research, using its technology that allows it to create libraries of peptide chemicals that can bind drugs to cells.

Muddy Waters Capital LLC says that the biotech company’s new, and traditional, businesses are flawed and is betting its shares will fall back to earth as a result.

Since its listing in 2013, PeptiDream has grown from a lab start-up into a company with the highest profit margins in the Japanese pharmaceutical industry – without ever having brought a drug to market. Its technology has attracted a bevy of partners including Novartis AG, Merck & Co and Shionogi & Co.

“We’re on the cusp of over the next 1-5 years of introducing a multitude of drugs into the clinic through our big pharma and strategic partnerships,” PeptiDream President Patrick Reid told Reuters in an interview.

“We’d rather get 5% of 100 drugs than get 100% of five drugs,” he said. He estimates that around half of all drugs being worked on by PeptiDream partners are cancer drugs.

PeptiDream’s rocketing market value has been helped by its traditional fees for collaborating in R&D and licensing deals to use its libraries. Its operating profit margin is 50%, the highest of all 37 members in the Tokyo market’s pharma index, where the average is 14%.

MUDDY WATERS DEALS DISPUTE

However the shares of the Kawasaki-based company fell 4 percent on the Nov. 7 release of Muddy Water’s report, which doubted the viability of many of its existing partnerships and said investors were “deluded as to its potential for commercializing drugs”.

“There’s real technology there, but it’s the usefulness of the technology that we question,” Muddy Waters founder Carson Block said in an interview with Reuters. “It’s cool, but so far it’s been unable to yield anything that’s meaningful.”

PeptiDream was now “massively overvalued”, Block said, adding that “many of these partnerships that are the basis of this valuation seem inactive”.

PeptiDream’s Reid declined to comment on the Muddy Waters report, referring to a company statement that “completely rejects” the short-seller’s assertions.

The company says it has 19 discovery and development partners, predominantly big to mid pharma firms. Among its 101 programs in progress, compared with 60 in 2017, two are cancer-related compounds being developed with Bristol-Myers Squibb (NYSE:) now in phase 1 clinical studies.

Twelve of PeptiDream’s partners told Reuters their partnerships were active and ongoing, including pharma giants Bristol-Myers, Merck, Novartis, Bayer AG (DE:) and Amgen Inc (NASDAQ:).

Japan’s Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma Corp declined to comment on the status of its relationship. The other six companies did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

Block declined to name a price target for PeptiDream or the size of its short strategy, which pays off when a stock falls.

PeptiDream’s shares are trading about 5% lower than before the release of Block’s report. PeptiDream is the second short play in Japan for Muddy Waters, which became famous for its bearish calls on Chinese companies. Muddy Waters announced a short bet on Nidec Corp in December 2016. Shares in the maker of precision motors have since risen more than 60%.

“It’s a bunt single, and that’s better than a strikeout,” Block said of PeptiDream’s share fall, referring by bunt single to a baseball play that sees a batter eke out a small gain.

“Japan’s potentially interesting. We might look to come back and hit some more bunt singles and see if we can build up a brand.”

PROTEIN HULA HOOPS

PeptiDream’s research partners do the heavy lifting in bringing drugs through clinical trials to market – allowing the company to avoid much of the large development costs and risks.

Even so, as the company increasingly looks to keep some ownership of its research, it will still receive future milestone payments and royalties.

On top of its research partnerships, it also has seven license agreements for its library or drug-discovery platform.

PeptiDream concentrates on “constrained peptides”, particularly macrocyclic peptides – hula hoops of natural and non-natural amino acids that can carry various cargoes to specific types of cells – such as cancer or inflamed tissue.

Founded in 2006, the company sprang out of the research of University of Tokyo professor Hiroaki Suga. Suga looked to Reid, then an associate professor at the university, to help forge the connections to big pharma.

As discoveries related to antibody and small-molecule treatments dwindle, peptide-based compounds are likely to become increasingly important as a class of drugs, said Bernstein analyst Shen He, who has an “outperform” on the stock.

“PeptiDream is one of the best technology platforms out there to solve this,” He said. “But it’s not an overnight journey.”

Japan Pharma Stock Performance – https://fingfx.thomsonreuters.com/gfx/mkt/12/8572/8497/japan%20pharma%20stocks.jpg

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Trump says China trade talks moving along nicely, but deal has to be right

© Reuters. Containers are seen at the Yangshan Deep Water Port in Shanghai © Reuters. Containers are seen at the Yangshan Deep Water Port in Shanghai

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump said on Saturday that trade talks with China were moving along “very nicely,” but the United States would only make a deal with Beijing if it was the right deal for America.

Trump told reporters at Joint Base Andrews before leaving for a visit to Tuscaloosa, Alabama, that the talks had moved more slowly than he would have liked, but China wanted a deal more than he did.

“The trade talks with China are moving along, I think, very nicely and if we make the deal that we want it will be a great deal and if it’s not a great deal, I won’t make it,” he said.

“I’d like to make a deal, but it’s got to be the right deal,” he said.

“China very much wants to make a deal,” Trump added. “They’re having the worst year they’ve had in 57 years. Their supply chain is all broken, like an egg, they want to make a deal, perhaps they have to make a deal, I don’t know, I don’t care, that’s up to them.”

Trump said there had been incorrect reporting about U.S. willingness to lift tariffs, which he said had brought in tens of billions of dollars for the United States and soon “literally hundreds of billions of dollars.”

“There was a lot of incorrect reporting, but you will see what I’m going to be doing,” he said.

“There’s a difference on tariffs, but we can always get tariffs,” he said.

“The level of tariff lift is incorrect,” Trump said in reference to news reports. He did not elaborate.

Officials from both countries said on Thursday that China and the United States had agreed to roll back tariffs already in place on each others’ goods in a “phase one” trade deal to end a damaging trade war, but the idea has been met with stiff opposition within some quarters of the Trump administration.

On Friday, Trump, in comments that hit stock prices and the dollar, said he had not agreed to a tariff rollback. “I haven’t agreed to anything,” he told reporters then.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

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Asian markets tread water as investors await clues on trade

By Stanley White

TOKYO (Reuters) – Asian shares were little changed on Wednesday as investors awaited new developments toward scaling back a bruising trade war between the United States and China.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was unchanged. Australian shares () were up 0.14%, while Japan’s Nikkei stock index () rose 0.35%.

Treasury yields fell slightly in Asia and crude oil futures also dipped as some investors started to temper their optimism about progress in the trade dispute in the absence of concrete progress in negotiations between the world’s two-largest economies.

The dollar held onto overnight gains against the yen and the euro after better-than-expected data on the U.S. services sector, but some analysts warn it will be difficult to shake lingering concern about the global economic outlook.

“We’ve had a good run-up, but there may be some consolidation,” said Shane Oliver, head of investment strategy and chief economist at AMP Capital Investors in Sydney.

“The trade war is the biggest reason that global growth has weakened over the past 18 months. We would like to see tariffs scaled back. We’re still waiting for clearer signs of a resolution.”

U.S. stock futures () edged 0.05% lower on Wednesday in Asia after the S&P 500 fell 0.01% on Tuesday, having reached a record high in the previous trading session.

The United States and China have signaled they are pushing hard to reach a preliminary “phase one” trade agreement, possibly some time this month.

Traders and investors hope this will roll back at least some of the punitive tariffs that Washington and Beijing have imposed on each other’s goods, but it is still uncertain when or where U.S. President Donald Trump will meet Chinese President Xi Jinping to sign the agreement.

Treasury prices rose slightly in Asia, recovering from a sell-off on Tuesday after data from the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) showed the U.S. services sector expanded more than expected in October.

The yield on benchmark fell to 1.8495% in Asia on Wednesday, while the two-year yield fell slightly to 1.6185%.

A jump in oil prices overnight also faded in Asian trading.

U.S. crude () fell 0.35% to $ 57.03 per barrel.

In the currency market, however, the dollar continued to benefit from the positive ISM data.

The dollar, which traded at 109.16 yen , close to its highest since Aug. 1. The greenback also traded at $ 1.1075 per euro (), approaching its highest level since Oct. 16.

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