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Merck (NYSE: MRK) agreed to buy Antelliq Group, a French provider of animal identification, tracing and monitoring solutions, from BC Partners for approximately $3.7 billion (including debt assumption).

Why it matters: It seems that the only thing hotter than human health deals in 2018 has been animal health deals, whether it be food (General Mills buying Blue Buffalo), veterinary services (Henry Schein spin-off/merger), diagnostics (Zoetis buying Abaxis), medicine (Elanco IPO) or the sorts of ancillary services that Antelliq provides.

  • Bottom line: "Antelliq’s products, which brought in €360 million euros in sales in the year ended Sept. 30, provide veterinarians, farmers and pet owners with digital technology that monitors animals and helps predict disease in them." — Reuters

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51 mins ago - World

Jeremy Corbyn suspended by U.K. Labour Party over anti-Semitism report

Photo: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

The U.K. Labour Party has suspended its former leader, Jeremy Corbyn, after a watchdog report found that the party failed to properly take action against allegations of anti-Semitism during his time in charge.

Why it matters: It represents a strong break by Keir Starmer, Labour's current leader, from the Corbyn era and one of the party's most persistent scandals.

U.S. economy sees record growth in third quarter

The U.S. economy grew at a 33.1% annualized pace in the third quarter, the Commerce Department said on Thursday.

The state of play: The record growth follows easing of the coronavirus-driven lockdowns that pushed the economy to the worst-ever contraction — but GDP still remains well below its pre-pandemic level.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Large coronavirus outbreaks leading to high death rates — Coronavirus cases are at an all-time high ahead of Election Day — Fauci says U.S. may not return to normal until 2022
  2. Politics: Space Force's No. 2 general tests positive for coronavirus
  3. World: Taiwan reaches a record 200 days with no local coronavirus cases
  4. Europe faces "stronger and deadlier" wave France imposes lockdown Germany to close bars and restaurants for a month.
  5. Sports: Boston Marathon delayed MLB to investigate Dodgers player who joined celebration after positive COVID test.