The longest days of the year have been busy ones

Stocks are trading slightly lower today, under pressure from a couple of angles. Most notable are the Fed Chair Jerome Powell’s upcoming meeting at the Council of Foreign Relations (1pm ET) and the Trump-Xi meeting later this week. Powell’s speech comes right on the heels of the Fed choosing to not change interest rates in their June meeting, at which point traders began pricing in 100% probability of a rate cut coming in July. Investors will be listening even closer than usual.

US President Donald Trump and Chinese General Secretary Xi Jinping are continuing their high stakes trade dispute with a face-to-face meeting later this week. The last time the two leaders met, in May, trade talks broke down and the US ended up hiking tariffs on Chinese imports. A successful meeting would definitely rally markets, but the general consensus seems to be that this meeting will also end in a stalemate.

In corporate news, AbbVie (ABBV) announced the acquisition of Allergan (AGN) for $63 billion, a stock/cash deal that paid a 43% premium over the June 24 closing price. The main goal of this acquisition, according the the Abbvie investor presentation, is to “mitigate the impact of the 2023 Humira [loss of exclusivity]”. Humira accounted for 57% of adjusted revenue in 2018, and a replacement is absolutely required if Abbvie plans to maintain its current valuation.

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