US stocks closed higher on Thursday as traders came back from the Christmas break. At the close, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.37% at 28,621.39, while the S&P 500 was 0.51% firmer at 3,239.91 and the Nasdaq Composite saw out the session 0.78% firmer at 9,022.39. The Dow closed 105.94 points higher on Thursday after closing lower on Tuesday as the truncated Christmas Eve session wrapped up on a mixed note – with the S&P 500 also finishing in the red, while the Nasdaq managed to register a fresh record after its ninth session of gains in a row for the first time since 1998.
Maltese market, Europe, Australia and Hong Kong remained closed.
Qiagen Completes Strategic Review
Qiagen announced earlier this week that it has completed a strategic review, and after receiving interest from unnamed parties, the firm has decided to remain a stand-alone business.
In reaction to the news, which was announced after the early close of the stock market on Christmas Eve, shares of Qiagen fell 21 percent to close at $32.91 in Thursday trade on the New York Stock Exchange.
The review began in mid-November after it received several "conditional, non-binding indications of interest" from potential merger or acquisition partners. Those expressions of interest came in the wake of the firm announcing that its long-time CEO Peer Schatz would step down, that it had lowered third quarter sales growth expectations, and that it would it would suspend ongoing next-gen sequencing-related instrument development while announcing a 15-year partnership with Illumina to develop next-generation sequencing-based in vitro diagnostic kits, including companion diagnostics.
One of the firms reported to have reached out to Qiagen regarding a potential acquisition was Thermo Fisher Scientific.
However, Qiagen said this week that its supervisory board and management board determined that the various alternatives to its prospects as a stand-alone company were not compelling, and it has "terminated all discussions so that full management focus can be on executing the stand-alone plan."
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