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A roundup of some of the North American equities making moves in both directions today

On the rise

Tesla Inc. (TSLA-Q) rose on Monday after Reuters reported Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk told employees in an internal email the electric carmaker has a chance to deliver a record number of vehicles in the third quarter.

“We have a shot at a record quarter for vehicle deliveries, but will have to rally hard to achieve it. This is the most number of vehicles per day that we’ve ever had to deliver,” Mr. Musk said in the email seen by Reuters.

“It’s also extremely important that we keep factory output as high as possible over the remaining 10 days. This is vital for the California market.”

See also: Tesla traders bet on Musk battery pitch to spark rally

The quarter-end rallying cry has become a familiar theme in recent quarters at Tesla, with Mr. Musk calling on employees to quickly build and deliver vehicles at the end of the quarter to achieve specific targets.

Tesla’s U.S. production, which was suspended from the end of March to early May due to the COVID-19 lockdown, has recovered in the current quarter.

Former Wall Street analyst and Tesla bull Gary Black on Sunday forecast 144,000 deliveries for the July to September quarter. Tesla’s previous quarterly sales record was set in the fourth quarter of last year, when it delivered 112,000 vehicles.

On the decline

Shares of North American airline, hotel and cruise companies were down on Monday, tracking their European peers as the UK signaled the possibility of a second national lockdown.

Fresh coronavirus-led restrictions in Spain and other European countries and news that British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was pondering a second lockdown in Britain sent Europe’s travel and leisure index down over 5 per cent.

Another round of business restrictions would also threaten a nascent recovery in the wider economy, analysts said, and could spark a flight from equities. The first round of lockdowns in March had led the benchmark S&P 500 to suffer its worst monthly decline since the global financial crisis.

“The possibility of new lockdowns is leading the market to be absolutely risk-averse toward consumer-facing sectors like travel, restaurants and retailers,” said Michael Hewson, analyst at CMC Markets UK.

In New York, Marriott International Inc. (MAR-Q), Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. (HLT-N) and Hyatt Hotels Corp. (H-N) all dropped, while casino operators Wynn Resorts Ltd. (WYNN-Q), MGM Resorts International (MGM-N) and Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS-N) also slipped.

Air Canada (AC-T) also lost ground on Monday.

Shares in JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM-N) and Bank of New York Mellon Corp. (BK-N) fell after BuzzFeed and other media reported they and other banks moved large sums of allegedly illicit funds over nearly two decades despite red flags about the origins of the money.

According to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, leaked government documents show that the banks continued moving illicit funds even after U.S. officials warned they’d face criminal prosecutions if they didn’t stop doing business with mobsters, fraudsters or corrupt regimes.

The consortium says the documents indicate that JPMorgan moved money for people and companies tied to the massive looting of public funds in Malaysia, Venezuela and the Ukraine. The bank also processed more than US$50-million in payments over a decade for Paul Manafort, the former campaign manager for President Donald Trump, according to the documents, which are known as the FinCEN Files.

Maxar Technologies Inc. (MAXR-T) slipped after Intelsat Corp. announced it has selected it to manufacture Intelsat 40e, a next-generation geostationary communications satellite scheduled to launch in 2022.

Maxar will integrate NASA’s Tropospheric Emissions: Monitoring of Pollution (TEMPO) payload with the Intelsat 40e satellite.

Wheaton Precious Metals Corp. (WPM-T) slipped in the wake of saying on Sunday it was planning a UK listing by year-end, potentially the largest metals and mining company to join the London Stock Exchange since Glencore in 2011.

The Vancouver-based company said it does not intent to raise capital in conjuction with the admission and plans to retain its primary listing on the Toronto Stock Exchange and dual listing on the New York Stock Exchange.

“As a leader in the precious metals sector, Wheaton is excited to take our place amongst the largest mining companies globally on the London Stock Exchange. Wheaton is one of the world’s largest precious metals streaming companies, providing investors a unique and sustainable proposition with some of the highest margins in the mining industry and exposure to a high-quality portfolio of assets. As a result, the Company has consistently outperformed gold and silver historically, as well as most other traditional mining investments,” said president and CEO Randy Smallwood.

Maverix Metals Inc. (MMX-T) was lower after it announced an agreement to acquire a portfolio of 11 gold royalties from Newmont Corp. (NEM-N) for an upfront consideration of US$75-million and contingent payments of up to US$15-million.

“This transaction marks another important milestone in our continued growth at Maverix,” stated Dan O’Flaherty, CEO. “The acquisition of these high-quality royalties enhances our existing portfolio and adds to our already robust pipeline of development assets.”

TC Energy Corp. (TRP-T) was lower after it said on Monday Chief Operating Officer François Poirier will take over as its president and chief executive officer after current boss Russ Girling retires at the end of this year.

Mr. Girling, who has headed the company since July 2010, has been witness to the roadblocks faced by its decade-old Keystone Pipeline project, which has been delayed by opposition from landowners, environmental groups and tribes.

In July, the U.S. Supreme Court reinforced a lower court ruling that blocked a key environmental permit, blocking substantial U.S. construction at the pipeline.

Mr. Poirier, who is also president of the company’s power & storage and Mexico units, will join the board on Jan.1, 2021.

Shares of the company are down more than 12 per cent so far this year.

CI Financial Corp. (CIX-T) was down after saying it has signed a deal to acquire U.S. investment adviser Bowling Portfolio Management LLC.

The firm based in Cincinnati has US$450-million in assets under management.

Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Bowling provides financial planning and investment management services to high-net-worth clients.

CI has been expanding its operations in the U.S. this year in a series of acquisitions.

It says when all pending transactions close, it will hold interests in wealth management firms across the U.S. with combined assets of approximately US$11.5-billion.

Snowflake Inc. (SNOW-N) declined after receiving a “sell” rating from the first brokerage on the Street to pick up coverage of its stock following last week’s IPO.

Summit Insights Group analyst Srini Nandury justified his rating by citing intense competition in data warehouse space, claiming Snowflake offers limited differentiation relative to Amazon’s Redshift, Google’s BiqQuery and Microsoft’s Azure SQL Database.

Calling it “the most expensive name in all tech,” he set a target of US$175, which implies 27-per-cent downside to the Friday close of US$240, and he sees it at risk of a “violent sell-off” given uncertain macro environment.

See also: Snowflake more than doubles in debut as Wall Street embraces tech IPOs

Shares of electric-truck maker Nikola Corp. (NKLA-Q) tumbled on Monday after founder Trevor Milton stepped down as executive chairman following a public squabble with a short-seller over allegations of nepotism and fraud.

The embattled company named Stephen Girsky, former vice chairman of General Motors Co and a member of Nikola’s board, as chairman, effective immediately.

Short-seller Hindenburg Research said in a scathing report earlier this month that it had gathered enough evidence to show that Nikola and Mr. Milton made false claims about company’s proprietary technology to form partnerships with large automakers.

“The focus should be on the Company and its world-changing mission, not me. So I made the difficult decision to approach the Board and volunteer to step aside as Executive Chairman,” said Mr. Milton, who owns about 20 per cent of the company.

“I intend to defend myself against false allegations leveled against me by outside detractors,” he said in a tweet.

Hindenburg also alleged that Mr. Milton appointed his brother, Travis, to lead the a unit in the company despite not having any substantial experience related to the sector.

Shares of General Motors Co. (GM-N), which owns an 11-per-cent stake in Nikola, also slid on Monday.

Gene sequencing company Illumina Inc. (ILMN-Q) slid after saying it will pay US$8-billion in cash and stock to buy cancer screening startup Grail Inc.

Grail, which is developing a blood test to identify early-stage cancers, was founded by Illumina as a separate company in 2016 and is backed by Inc founder Jeff Bezos and billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates.

The deal would give Illumina access to Grail’s test for early detection of cancer from blood called Galleri, which is expected to launch commercially in 2021.

Grail plans to follow Galleri with future blood-based tests for cancer diagnosis, detection and post-treatment monitoring of cancer patients, the companies said.

Earlier this month Grail, in which Illumina is the biggest shareholder with a near 14.5-per-cent stake, filed for a U.S. initial public offering, without disclosing the offering size.

Under the terms of the agreement, Grail stockholders, including Illumina, will receive US$3.5-billion in cash and US$4.5-billion in shares of Illumina common stock.

With files from staff and wires

Follow David Leeder on Twitter: @daveleederOpens in a new window

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