Financial Daily Dose 10.19.2020 | Top Story: ConocoPhillips Buys Oil Producer Concho Resources in Deal Worth Nearly $10B

Robins Kaplan LLP

Robins Kaplan LLP

ConocoPhillips is doubling down on its commitment to the Midland basin by buying Concho Resources Inc. in “an all-stock transaction valued at $9.7 billion,” even “as the American shale-drilling industry is facing a downturn after a historic crash in oil prices amid the Covid-19 pandemic” – WSJ and Bloomberg

Official figures delivered last Friday showed the U.S. budget deficit hitting a record $3.1 trillion for 2020 “as the coronavirus pandemic fueled a surge in spending and a drop in tax receipts brought by households and businesses struggling with economic shutdowns” – NYTimes and WSJ and Marketplace

The lack of a national Covid-prevention and mitigation strategy means that the U.S. is, at the moment, a patchwork of regional economies (even more than usual). Those with fewer restrictions (like the South) are outperforming other areas, though the “higher employment and consumer spending” is being accompanied with “more infections and deaths” – WSJ

On the other hand, as China is demonstrating, a national strategy is proving tightly linked to widespread economic recovery – Bloomberg and NYTimes and WSJ

Tech stocks are on pace to wrap up 2020 “with their greatest share of the stock market ever,” eclipsing their “dot-com era peak in the latest illustration of their growing influence on global consumers” – WSJ and MarketWatch

Britain’s Information Commissioner’s Office has hit British Airways with a record $26 million fine for “inadequately protecting the personal and financial information of more than 400,000 customers”—particularly in relation to its failure to detect for 2 months a cyberattack in 2018. Though sizeable, the final fine amount is a fraction of the almost $200 million figure the ICO had first proposed under the GDPR enforcement mechanism applicable at the time of the breach – Law360

A bit of new intrigue in the still-in-process Oracle/TikTok mashup on news that Oracle chair Larry Ellison delivered a $250k donation to a super PAC supporting South Carolina’s Lindsey Graham on September 14, the “same day” Ellison’s company “announced it was chosen as TikTok’s U.S. ‘trusted technology provider’” – Bloomberg

Streetwise is worried about SPACs. Which means the rest of us should probably keep a wary eye on them, too – WSJ

On the heels of the past week’s confirmation that many good-sized American companies aren’t planning on welcoming back employees to the office until July 2021, we’re learning that at least some aren’t planning on a fully filled HQ for the foreseeable future – NYTimes

A Delaware chancery court is digging into the details of WeWork’s “abrupt reversal earlier this year of its support for suing Softbank Group over its walk-away from a $3 billion tender offer” thanks to dueling positions from special director committees – Law360

The Journal helps us understand why Amazon, with all it has going on, still bothers with Prime Day. [Hint: it’s all about the third-parties] – WSJ

Chinese lawmakers have passed a new measure “to restrict sensitive exports to protect national security, helping Beijing gain reciprocity against U.S as tech tensions mount.” The law will apply to “all companies in China, including foreign-invested ones” and will take effect December 1 – Bloomberg

Neighborhood social networking app Nextdoor is reportedly mulling options for going public and has a valuation of $4-5 billion in mind for its trouble – Bloomberg

Apple’s iPhone 12 launch last week appears to have launched a new “poaching season” for America’s biggest mobile carriers, with each of the big 3 making their own pitch to entice consumers to their brand of 5G experience – WSJ and MarketWatch

Yes, it’s just Monday. But why not start working for the weekend with this variety of sub-$20 bottles in mind – NYTimes

Stay safe.

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