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Goldman Sachs’ Risky Fintech Tango Takes a Timeout After Federal Reserve’s Compliance Cue

Goldman Sachs’ transaction banking arm has decided to take a breather from onboarding riskier fintech clients. This strategic pause comes after a friendly heads-up from the U.S. Federal Reserve earlier this year regarding matters of risk and compliance, according to insiders cited by the Financial Times.

Reportedly, the Fed’s concerns revolve around the level of scrutiny and oversight exercised by the Goldman division when bringing high-risk non-bank clients into the fold. Those in the know claim that due diligence and monitoring procedures have been a tad lax.

The Fed remained tight-lipped on the matter, while both Goldman Sachs and the transaction banking unit chose not to offer immediate commentary in response to a query from Reuters about the report.

Moving Markets

Dow futures lift, Salesforce adds 5.7% after earnings

U.S. stock futures were trading in a tight range on Wednesday night, following gains among benchmark averages as weaker ADP employment and preliminary GDP figures boosted bets of a pause in interest rate hikes from U.S. Federal Reserve policymakers.

  • By 6:40pm ET (10:40pm GMT) Dow Jones Futures was up by 0.2%, S&P 500 Futures was flat and Nasdaq 100 Futures lifted 0.1%.
  • In extended deals, Salesforce (NYSE:CRM) added 5.7%, reporting Q2 EPS of $2.12 versus $1.90 expected on revenues of $8.6 billion versus $8.53 billion expected. The company forecasted Q3 2024 EPS in the range of $2.05-$2.06 versus $1.83 expected, with revenues predicted in the range of $8.7-8.72 billion versus $8.66 billion expected.
  • Okta, Inc. (NASDAQ:OKTA) popped 9.2% after the company reported Q2 EPS of $0.31 versus $0.22 expected, with revenue reported at $556 million versus $534.67 million expected.
  • Victoria’s Secret & Co (NYSE:VSCO) fell 3%, reporting Q2 EPS of $0.24 versus $0.27 expected on revenues of $1.43 billion versus $1.44 billion expected.
  • Five Below (NASDAQ:FIVE) fell 7.4%, reporting Q2 EPS of $0.84 versus $0.83 expected, while revenues came in at $759 million versus $759.7 million expected.
  • Ahead in Thursday’s session, market participants will be looking towards personal consumer expenditures index, personal income and spending, jobless claims and Chicago PMI as well as a speech from the Fed’s Collins.
  • Among earnings, Broadcom Inc (NASDAQ:AVGO), UBS Group AG (NYSE:UBS), VMware Inc (NYSE:VMW), Dell Technologies Inc (NYSE:DELL), Lululemon Athletica Inc (NASDAQ:LULU) and Dollar General Corporation (NYSE:DG) are among companies set to release quarterly results.
  • During Wednesday’s regular trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average added 37.6 points or 0.1% to 34,890.3, the S&P 500 gained 17.2 points or 0.4% to 4,514.9 and the NASDAQ Composite lifted 75.6 points or 0.5% to 14,019.3.
  • On the bond markets, United States 10-Year rates were at 4.11%


Can-Fite Reports Second Quarter 2023 Financial Results & Progress in Two Pivotal Phase III Clinical Studies

Can-Fite BioPharma Ltd. (NYSE American: CANF) (TASE: CANF), a biotechnology company advancing a pipeline of proprietary small molecule drugs that address oncology, inflammatory and liver diseases, today announced financial results for the six months ended June 30, 2023.

Clinical Progress

Pivotal Phase III Advanced Liver Cancer Study—Can-Fite’s pivotal Phase III liver cancer study, Liveration, which continues enrollment is designed to assess Namodenoson in the treatment of patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and underlying Child Pugh B7 (CPB7) who have not responded to one or two other lines of therapy. The primary endpoint is overall survival. An interim analysis will be conducted by an Independent Data Monitoring Committee (IDMC) after 50% of the planned 450 patients are enrolled and treated.

Breakthrough Abstract Award–Can-Fite was recently granted a prestigious Breakthrough Abstract Award by the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Conquer Cancer Foundation for the development of a novel approach to treat advanced liver cancer with the A3 adenosine receptor agonist, Namodenoson.

Exploratory Phase II Pancreatic Cancer Study—Can-Fite is preparing an open-label Phase II exploratory trial to assess the safety and efficacy of Namodenoson in the treatment of patients with pancreatic cancer who have received at least one previous systemic therapy. In pre-clinical studies, Namodenoson demonstrated a robust anti-growth effect against pancreatic carcinoma, reaching 90% growth inhibition. The mechanism of action entails de-regulation of the Wnt signal transduction pathway, a key modulator of pancreatic carcinoma cell growth.

ASCO Recognition—Can-Fite’s pancreatic cancer program received recognition from ASCO when its study titled “Effects of Namodenoson on Pancreatic Carcinoma: Preclinical Evidence” was published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology supplement of the 2023 ASCO Annual Meeting Proceedings.

Preparatory Work for Pivotal Phase III Psoriasis Study; Can Fite Received Green Light from FDA and EMA— Following positive responses from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) for its registration plan and pivotal Phase III study protocol for Piclidenoson in the treatment of moderate to severe psoriasis, the Company is preparing for study initiation. The FDA requested two Phase III studies and also encouraged the Company to enroll adolescent patients due to Piclidenoson’s strong safety profile demonstrated over its development history and prior clinical studies. Can-Fite has submitted to the FDA a pediatric plan to allow the registration of Piclidenoson for the treatment of adolescents. Inclusion of adolescents for the psoriasis Indication is expected to broaden the market.

Development for Treatment of Lowe Syndrome, a Rare Genetic Disease—Researchers at the University of Naples Federico II and The Telethon Institute of Genetics and Medicine (TIGEM) in Italy found Piclidenoson to be effective in pre-clinical studies for the treatment of Lowe Syndrome. Can-Fite and Fondazione Telethon signed an agreement outlining their collaboration for the development of Piclidenoson for the treatment Lowe Syndrome, a rare genetic disease with no treatment available, and an estimated $100 million treatment market in the U.S. alone.

Dollar General’s Profit Outlook Takes a Dip: Blames Boring Store Parties and Essential Selling Spree

Dollar General (NYSE: DG) decided to give its crystal ball a polish and adjust its annual sales and profit expectations. Why the change of heart? Well, it seems that the combo of a lackluster parade of shoppers through its doors and a strategic shift towards peddling more low-margin essentials has caused a wrinkle or two.

The stock of this Goodlettsville, Tennessee-based retail player, which has been partying at a 36% lower stock price this year, got an early morning wake-up call with a 14% drop in premarket trading.

It appears that Uncle Sam’s thrifty constituents, especially those hanging out in the low-to-middle-income bracket, are having a bit of a budgetary tug-of-war thanks to Uncle Sam’s budget-trimming and skimpier tax refunds, making the whole inflation thing even more of a headache.

According to Dollar General, their gross profit’s makeover as a percentage of net sales dropped by a less-than-sexy 126 basis points during the second quarter, in comparison to the glam it was sporting last year. The culprits? A slimmer inventory, an uptick in stuff mysteriously vanishing, and even a bit of inventory damage drama.

Export Control Tango: Nvidia’s AI Chips Swap Dance Partners from China to the Middle East

In a twist that’s leaving tech enthusiasts scratching their heads, the U.S. has decided to play a game of export control dominos with Nvidia’s AI chips. Like a chess master making bold moves, the restrictions that were once China-exclusive are now spreading their wings to include the enigmatic Middle East. With a touch of cloak-and-dagger intrigue, the regulatory filing revealed that Nvidia’s high-tech chips, the A100 and H100, designed to turbocharge machine-learning feats, are now subject to these controls.

While last year’s similar dance-off seemed like Uncle Sam’s attempt to outfox China’s tech prowess, this time it’s a riddle wrapped in a mystery – what national security anxieties are triggered by AI chips taking a detour through the desert? Nvidia, cool as a cucumber, assured everyone that their chips’ global tour won’t hamper their financial show. It’s a bit like saying a sprinkle of paprika won’t affect the flavor of your world-famous chili.

Smart investing is like crafting the perfect cup of coffee – a dash of patience, a sprinkle of research, and a dollop of diversification. It’s not about timing the market, but about knowing when to let your investments percolate and mature. Just as a barista wouldn’t use beans that were roasted in the Jurassic era, a savvy investor wouldn’t rely on outdated strategies. So stir up your portfolio with a blend of knowledge and a hint of risk, and sip on the delightful returns that only a well-brewed investment can provide.