Dieselgate has merely accelerated the decline. The US market is a catastrophe for VW. Just 24,000 vehicles sold in June! For paltry sales VW is now on the hook for a 15 billion dollar settlement. Let's see: If VW made on average $3,000 per vehicle sold they'd have to sell 5 million vehicles which, at 300,000 vehicles a year would take them 16 years.
Meanwhile VW owners elsewhere cannot expect to be compensated like US owners due to much softer consumer protection laws in their countries. They are furious being treated so differently and their anger is not with their governments or the laws of their countries but with VW who isn't treating them the same as US owners. You add to that the drop of the British Pound and potential future hurdles for the UK market and it is clear that sales in Europe will be going into the toilet as well. Diesel, which is huge in Europe, will lead the way lower.
Medicaid increasingly obligated to pay for Hep C treatment for all patients wasn't it. Prevailing against Merck wasn't either. The anticipated extension of HIV dominance for more than another decade with TAF went flat. Unrelenting large scale stock buy backs have not stemmed the slide toward a P/E that is flat out ridiculous.
The only thing that Mr. Market seems to appreciate is taking the company to the next level through the acquisition of compelling external assets. No news here but it is either going to be this or a continuation of a painful trading pattern. John Milligan, your investors are waiting.
What irked the judge even more, she ruled, is that Durette lied about attending the conference call. In a deposition, he repeatedly denied having been on the call. He recanted from the witness stand at trial only after he was confronted with notes taken by a Pharmasset employee during the call, showing that he had participated. At that point, he pleaded a faulty memory.
Freeman didn’t buy it. “It is overwhelmingly clear...,” she ruled, “that Dr. Durette sought at every turn to create the false impression that Merck’s conduct was aboveboard.” She blamed Merck, which she said “sponsored and encouraged” his conduct, then sought to minimize its importance by attributing the fiasco to “the failed memory of a retired employee.”
Perhaps even encourage him to do so for a financial reward? I find it hard to believe that a former employee would commit perjury (a criminal offense) if there is nothing in it for him. An investigation needs to determine Merck's role in his testimony and if Durette acted alone. The real perpetrators may well turn out to be current employees and/or contracted attorneys that acted on orders of company executives. This could turn into one ugly legal morass for Merck.