ASX 200 (XJO) drops 1.6% on elevated virus fears

The ASX 200 (ASX: XJO) is currently down 1.6% on elevated virus fears.

Melbourne continues to see growing COVID-19 case numbers with another 33 reported this morning. In the US cases continue to climb in numerous states outside of the original north east hotspot. New York is now asking people coming from hotspots to quarantine for two weeks if they’re going to travel.

CSL (ASX: CSL) announces acquisition

CSL announced it has agreed to acquire from uniQure exclusive global license rights to commercialise an adeno-associated virus (AAV) gene therapy program called AMT-061 (etranacogene dezaparvovec) for the treatment of haemophilia B.

The AMT-061 program, currently in Phase 3 clinical trials, could be one of the first gene therapies to provide potentially long-term benefits to patients with haemophilia B.

CSL will pay an upfront cash payment of US$450 million, followed by regulatory and commercial sales milestone payments and royalties. UniQure will complete the Phase 3 trial and scale up manufacture for early commercial supply under an agreed plan with CSL.

Large Qantas (ASX: QAN) capital raising

Qantas is doing a large capital raising. wants to raise up to $1.9 billion for two reasons. It said it wants to use the money to accelerate its recovery and position it for new opportunities.

Around $1.4 billion will be raised from a fully underwritten institutional placement and up to $500 million in a non-underwritten share purchase plan.

Costs will be reduced by $15 billion during this three year period of lower activity with $1 billion of ongoing cost savings per year from FY23.

Around 100 aircraft will be grounded for up to 12 months, some will be grounded for longer.

There is going to be a large number of job losses across Qantas and Jetstar. The airline will reduce the pre-crisis workforce by at least 6,000 roles across all parts of the business. It will continue to stand down the 15,000 employees, particularly those associated with international operations until flying returns. Qantas is going to retire the six remaining 747s immediately, six months ahead of schedule.

Bapcor (ASX: BAP) reports large revenue growth

Bapcor revealed that COVID-19 impacts have not been as severe as expected.

In May and June Autobarn has experienced same store sales growth of 45% over the prior year. That’s a huge growth rate. That followed on from April same store sales falling around 3%. On a full year basis it’s estimated same store sales growth will be 8%.

Burson Trade saw same store sales growth of 10% in May and June compared to last year after a 10% drop in April. Full year growth is expected to be approximately 5%.

The other segments of New Zealand, specialist wholesale and Thailand are recovering too.

Redbubble (ASX:RBL) shares are going bananas

Redbubble said it has benefited from an acceleration in online activity in the fourth quarter of FY20.

There was an increase in demand at both of Redbubble’s marketplaces, as well as across core geographies and product categories.

In the quarter to date (to 22 June), marketplace revenue growth was 107% (up 96% on a constant currency basis).

In the year to date (to 22 June), marketplace revenue growth was 42% (up 34% in constant currency terms).

Redbubble said it generated operating EBITDA of $11.9 million (click here to learn what EBITDA means) for the 11 months to 31 May 2020, this represents growth of 101% year on year, up 86% in constant currency terms.

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