Stocks slip off record highs as Microsoft nabs Nuance in $19.7B deal

Microsoft seals $19.7B deal for Nuance Communications

U.S. equity markets slid Monday as investors readied for the start of earnings season and took in a major deal from Microsoft Corp. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
I:DJI DOW JONES AVERAGES 37986.4 +211.02 +0.56%
SP500 S&P 500 4967.23 -43.89 -0.88%
I:COMP NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX 15282.009722 -319.49 -2.05%

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 54 points, or 0.16%, while S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite were lower by 0.02% and 0.36%, respectively. Both the Dow and the S&P finished at all-time highs on Friday as the Nasdaq escaped bear-market territory. 

In M&A news, Nuance Communications is being acquired by Microsoft in a $19.7 billion deal, including debt. The all-cash transaction will pay Nuance shareholders $56 per share, a 23% premium to Friday’s closing price. The deal is the second-largest for Microsoft, behind its $26 billion purchase of LinkedIn in 2016. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
NUAN n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
MSFT MICROSOFT CORP. 399.12 -5.15 -1.27%

In addition, earnings season is set to kick off on Wednesday with big banks Goldman Sachs Group Inc., JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Wells Fargo & Co. set to release their quarterly results.  

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
JPM JPMORGAN CHASE & CO. 185.80 +4.66 +2.57%
GS THE GOLDMAN SACHS GROUP INC. 404.07 +0.84 +0.21%
WFC WELLS FARGO & CO. 60.35 +1.61 +2.75%

Elsewhere, Uber Technologies Inc. reported gross bookings hit a record high in March as ride hailings snapped back to pre-pandemic levels and food delivery more than doubled from the previous year. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
UBER UBER TECHNOLOGIES INC. 69.20 -2.10 -2.95%
LYFT LYFT INC. 16.15 -0.56 -3.35%

Meanwhile, Alibaba Group Holdings was fined a record 18 billion Chinese yuan ($2.75 billion) by Chinese regulators for anticompetitive behavior. However, the fine was smaller than feared.    

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
BABA ALIBABA GROUP HOLDING LTD. 69.07 +0.19 +0.28%

In commodities, West Texas Intermediate crude oil climbed 38 cents or $59.70 per barrel and gold slipped $12.10 to $1,731.20 an ounce.

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Overseas markets were lower. 

In Europe, Germany’s DAX 30 and France’s CAC 40 both fell 0.13% while Britain’s FTSE 100 lost 0.39%. 

Asian markets were weaker across the board with China’s Shanghai Composite index down 1.09%, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index declining 0.86% and Japan’s Nikkei 225 sliding 0.77%.