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 35368.47 -543.34 -1.51%
SP500 S&P 500 4577.11 -85.74 -1.84%
I:COMP NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX 14506.896644 -386.86 -2.60%

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 NUANCE COMMUNICATIONS INC. 55.33 -0.03 -0.05%
MSFT MICROSOFT CORP. 302.65 -7.55 -2.43%

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. 151.27 -6.62 -4.19%
GS THE GOLDMAN SACHS GROUP INC. 354.40 -26.54 -6.97%
WFC WELLS FARGO & CO. 56.69 -1.37 -2.36%

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. 38.41 -3.10 -7.47%
LYFT LYFT INC. 38.43 -2.83 -6.86%

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. 128.60 -2.97 -2.26%

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%.