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Fox News Graphic About Senate Runoffs Has People Scrambling To Decipher It

AmerisourceBergen to Buy Walgreens Health Unit for $6.5 Billion

AmerisourceBergen Corp. agreed to buy Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc.’s Alliance Healthcare businesses for about $6.5 billion in cash and stock, gaining one of the largest pharmaceutical wholesalers in Europe.

The deal includes $6.275 billion in cash and 2 million shares of AmerisourceBergen’s common stock, the companies said in astatement Wednesday. It is expected to close by the end of by AmerisourceBergen’s fiscal year 2021, which ends in September.

With Alliance Healthcare, U.S. drug distributor AmerisourceBergen will strengthen its global reach, while Walgreens will focus on its main pharmacy business. In addition to the transaction, the two companies announced extensions of existing distribution agreements. The businesses already have close ties, as Walgreens is AmerisourceBergen’s biggest shareholder with a stake of 30%.

This is the second large acquisition in just a few hours in the health-care industry Wednesday. UnitedHealth Group Inc. earlier agreed to purchase Change HealthcareInc. in adeal that values the health technology company at about $8 billion.

AmerisourceBergen rose 3.8% in early U.S. trading, while Walgreens gained 2.4%.

US companies unexpectedly shed 123,000 jobs in December, ADP report shows

Here’s where the jobs are in the US

Wall Street Journal assistant editorial page editor James Freeman, FOX Business’ Dagen McDowell, EmployBridge chief workforce analyst Joanie Courtney, FreedomWorks economist Steve Moore, Wall Street Journal senior writer Jon Hilsenrath, FOX Business’ Charles Payne and Fox News contributor Brian Brenberg on the October jobs report.

U.S. private employers in December slashed jobs for the first time in six months, suggesting the labor market's recovery from the coronavirus crisis has stalled amid a resurgence in cases nationwide, according to the ADP National Employment Report released Wednesday.

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The report showed that companies shed 123,000 jobs last month, missing the 88,000-job increase that economists surveyed by Refinitiv had predicted.

"As the impact of the pandemic on the labor market intensifies, December posted the first decline since April 2020," Ahu Yildirmaz, vice president and co-head of the ADP Research Institute, said in a statement.

The data precedes the Labor Department's more-closely watched jobs report, which is predicted to show the U.S. economy added 100,000 jobs last month, down from November's gain of 245,000. Analysts anticipate unemployment will hold steady at 6.7%.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates. 

M.D.C. Holdings Q4 New Home Deliveries Rise 7% – Quick Facts

Homebuilder M.D.C. Holdings, Inc. (MDC) on Wednesday reported selected preliminary results for the 2020 fourth quarter.

The company said its new home deliveries in the fourth quarter rose 7 percent to 2,564 from 2,389 in the year-ago period. Net new home orders surged 72 percent to 2,708 from 1,574 last year.

Homes in backlog increased 75 percent to 6,655 from 3,801 in the prior-year quarter, and dollar value of backlog jumped 87 percent to $3.26 billion.

M.D.C. Holdings said it will release its 2020 fourth-quarter earnings results before the market opens on Tuesday, February 2, 2021.

Chicago Business Barometer Unexpectedly Indicates Faster Growth

A report released by MNI Indicators on Wednesday showed an unexpected acceleration in the pace of growth in Chicago-area business activity in the month of December.

MNI Indicators said its Chicago business barometer rose to 59.5 in December from 58.2 in November, with a reading above 50 indicating growth. Economists had expected the barometer to dip to 57.0.

The unexpected uptick by the headline index was partly due to a notable increase by the employment index, which reached a one-year high but continued to indicate a contraction.

The production index also inched up by 1.1 points as business activity picked up, while easing demand led to a 2-point drop by the new orders index.

On the inflation front, the prices paid index climbed 2.2 points to its highest level since September of 2018, with firms reporting higher prices for metals.

When asked about their planned business activity forecast for 2021, 44.9 percent of respondents said they see growth below 5 percent, while 42.9 percent expect growth to be between 5 and 10 percent.

A majority of respondents said they do not yet know if they will adjust their 2021 budget as coronavirus vaccines roll out over the next few months.

Fox News Graphic About Senate Runoffs Has People Scrambling To Decipher It

A graphic shown on Fox News Tuesday about the Senate runoffs in Georgia tickled some viewers for its sheer obviousness and mystery.

The on-screen display, noticed by Vox’s Aaron Rupar, flashed on during an exchange between Shannon Bream and Bret Baier as the election returns rolled in.

It showed the results of a poll in which 98% of Georgia voters contacted by Fox News said that the importance of which party controls the Senate was a factor in their balloting, and 2% said it was not. Duh.

But it was the “SDFG SDFG SDFG SDFG SDFG SDFG SF” below the headline that sparked the intrigue.

What does it mean?

People on Twitter, including many who were pleased that Democratic challenger Raphael Warnock had defeated Republican Kelly Loeffler, and that Democrat Jon Ossoff was leading Republican David Perdue, had theories.