May 30, 2018

Bayer receives U.S. antitrust approval for Monsanto merger

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata

Photo credit should read jean-francois Monier/AFP/Getty Images

Bayer yesterday received U.S. antitrust approval for its $66 billion acquisition of Monsanto, based on Bayer’s commitment to sell around $9 billion in assets.

Why it's a big deal: This is the largest-ever divestiture related to antitrust enforcement, and shows how the Trump administration's antipathy toward mega-mergers isn't limited to media or China.

  • Bayer has until June 14 to close the deal, which was first signed in 2016, but still needs sign-offs from Canada and Mexico.

Bottom line from WSJ's Brent Kendall: "The approval clears one of the last remaining regulatory hurdles for the Bayer-Monsanto transaction, one of three recent mega-deals that have reshaped the global market for crop seeds and chemicals. Last year Dow Chemical and DuPont merged, while China National Chemical acquired Swiss seed and pesticide maker Syngenta."

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Updated 8 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Biden: George Floyd's last words are "a wake-up call for our nation"

Former Vice President Joe Biden meets with clergy members and community activists during a visit to Bethel AME Church in Wilmington, Del. on June 1, 2020. Photo: JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images

Vice President Joe Biden is calling George Floyd’s dying words “a wake-up call for our nation,” and criticized President Trump’s decision to unleash tear gas on peaceful protesters outside the White House, in a civil rights speech from Philadelphia on Tuesday.

Why it matters: Biden in the address drew a sharp contrast between himself and Trump, whose first remarks addressing nationwide unrest Monday highlighted law and order, extreme demonstrations of militarized “strength” and other blustery threats.

Updated 16 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 11 a.m. ET: 6,302,318 — Total deaths: 376,322 — Total recoveries — 2,716,924Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 11 a.m. ET: 1,812,125 — Total deaths: 105,192 — Total recoveries: 458,231 — Total tested: 17,340,682Map.
  3. Public health: Protests against police brutality threaten coronavirus response.
  4. Business: Coronavirus could lower GDP by $15.7 trillion — More than 1 in 6 black workers lost jobs between February and April.
  5. Climate: The alarm over climate financial risk gets louder because of coronavirus.
  6. Media: Interest in the George Floyd protests has soared past the coronavirus.

The business of tear gas

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

U.S. forces yesterday used tear gas on peaceful protesters outside the White House gates, prior to a declared curfew, clearing a path for President Trump to visit a riot-damaged church for a photo opportunity.

The state of play: Two of the largest U.S. producers of tear gas are owned by private equity firms, but those firms have no interest in discussing their ownership.