U.S. stock futures were mixed on Wednesday as investors awaited data related to wholesale inventories. Notably, data on wholesale inventories for April is scheduled to be released today.
Dow futures were relatively flat, while S&P and Nasdaq futures were trading around 0.2% and 0.3% higher, respectively, at the time of writing.
Companies that are expected to report earnings before the market opens include Campbell Soup Company (CPB), The Lovesac Company (LOVE), and United Natural Foods (UNFI). GameStop (GME), RH (RH), and Greif Class A (GEF) are expected to report after the market close.
ContextLogic (WISH) was the most actively traded stock in pre-market trading, with 22 million shares having changed hands at the time of writing. There was no fundamental news explaining the trading frenzy.
Aethlon Medical Inc (AEMD) was the biggest gainer, as the stock popped 255.2% at the time of writing. Recently, the company’s Aethlon Hemopurifier yielded positive results in the treatment of two patients who were severely ill with COVID-19 and were given no chances of survival. Following the critical situation, the company’s product was granted emergency use authorization (EUA) by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Notably, though the treatment has not been fully approved by the FDA, it was permitted due to the absence of any other options.
Ondas Holdings Inc. (ONDS) was the biggest laggard in pre-market trading, as the stock plummeted 16.8% at the time of writing. Recently, the supplier of private broadband cellular data network technology announced the pricing of its 6.4 million common stock offering for $7 per share. The gross proceeds from the offering are expected to be $44.8 million, excluding the underwriting discount and other costs. They are intended to be used for working capital and general corporate purposes by Ondas.
In earnings news, Limoneira Co. (LMNR), an agribusiness and real estate development company, has announced better-than-expected fiscal Q2 results. The company reported revenues of $45.1 million, missing the Street’s estimates by .3 million, even as it surged 14% year-over-year. High fresh lemon and avocado volumes were the primary drivers.
Earnings came in at $0.10 per share, surpassing consensus estimates of $0.06 per share. A loss of $0.09 per share was reported in the prior-year period.
Limoneira CEO Harold Edwards said, “The pace of home sales has been increasing this year and as each quarter closes, we gain confidence in the timing of the expected $80 million of cash distributions from Harvest at Limoneira over the next six years beginning in fiscal year 2022.”
Meanwhile, the enterprise automation software vendor UiPath, Inc. (PATH) reported its first public quarterly earnings post IPO. The company surpassed both earnings and revenue expectations driven by solid growth in ARR.
Adjusted earnings came in at $0.02 per share in fiscal Q1, compared to a loss of $0.09 per share in the year-ago period. As per the Earnings Whisper number, the company was expected to post a loss of $0.10 per share. Revenue was $186.2 million, up 65% year-over-year, and surpassed the Earnings Whisper number of $167.3 million.
UiPath CEO Daniel Dines said, “We believe automation is the next layer in the software stack… Our end-to-end automation platform, flexible deployment model, and growing ecosystem of partners position us well to capitalize on the more than $60 billion market opportunity ahead of us.”
In M&A news, Synopsys (SNPS), an electronic design automation company, revealed the acquisition of Code Dx for an undisclosed sum. Code Dx is the provider of an application that automates and accelerates the discovery, prioritization, and remediation of software vulnerabilities. The terms of the deal were not disclosed. The acquisition expands Synopsys’ portfolio of application security tools and services.
Synopsys Software Integrity Group’s GM Jason Schmitt commented, “While robust security testing is vital to securing modern software, it often produces large amounts of vulnerability data that is difficult to manage. Code Dx enables our customers to optimize and harness the breadth of our application security portfolio, along with third-party tools, by aggregating, correlating, and prioritizing security testing results based on risk.”
Meanwhile, a molecular diagnostics company CareDx (CDNA) acquired Transplant Hero, a New York-based app provider that focuses on helping transplant patients manage their medications. The financial terms of the deal have been kept under wraps.
Through this acquisition, CareDx’s digital portfolio is expected to be enhanced. The portfolio includes a comprehensive suite of cloud-based solutions, as well as software for transplant centers and dialysis providers. Furthermore, the company’s mobile health app — AlloCare — which manages patients’ wellness routine before and after transplant, will benefit from the acquisition.
CareDx CEO Reg Seeto said, “CareDx and Transplant Hero are both dedicated to improving outcomes for transplant patients. We will be able to leverage Transplant Hero’s social media presence to augment AlloCare.”
In other news, Pfizer’s (PFE) Pneumococcal 20-valent Conjugate vaccine, PREVNAR 20, has received U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) approval. The vaccine is designed for preventing invasive pneumococcal disease and pneumonia in adults aged 18 and above. The U.S. regulator’s decision is based on data from clinical studies in adults, which included Phase 1 and 2, and three Phase 3 trials. This data helped describe the safety and evaluate the immunogenicity of the vaccine.
Kathrin U. Jansen, Ph.D., Senior VP and Head of Vaccine Research and Development, Pfizer, said, “Today’s approval of PREVNAR 20 marks a significant step forward in our ongoing fight to help address the burden of pneumococcal disease, including pneumonia in adults, and broadens global protection against more disease-causing serotypes than any other pneumococcal conjugate vaccines.”