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Wednesday’s Pre-Market: Here’s What You Need to Know Before the Market Opens

U.S. stock futures were mixed on Wednesday ahead of the Federal Reserve’s policy decision, following its Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) two-day policy meeting. Notably, investors await data for May related to housing starts and permits, along with export and import prices, which are to be released today.

S&P futures remain relatively flat, while Nasdaq futures had gained about 0.1%, at the time of writing and Dow futures were trading 0.2% lower.

X Financial (XYF) and Centogene NV (CNTG) are expected to report earnings before the market opens, while Lennar (LEN) and Honest Company, Inc. (HNST) are expected to report after the market close.

Catabasis Pharmaceuticals (CATB) was the most actively traded stock in pre-market trading. Recently, the clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company disclosed in its SEC filing that RA Capital Management has acquired about 5.75 million shares, representing 7.5% ownership of the company.

Kindred Biosciences (KIN) was the biggest gainer in pre-market trading as the stock jumped 44.6% at the time of writing. Recently, the biopharmaceutical company agreed to be acquired by Elanco Animal Health Incorporated (ELAN) for $9.25 per share, which represents an approximate value of $440 million. This price signifies a premium of 52% based on the 30-day average.

KindredBio’s co-founder Denise Bevers said, “This announcement is validation of KindredBio’s achievements as one of the world’s first veterinary biopharmaceutical companies, recognizing our track record in drug development and remarkably talented team. KindredBio looks forward to continuing our mission to transform veterinary medicine as part of the Elanco family.”

Inhibikase Therapeutics (IKT) was the biggest laggard in pre-market trading, as the stock dropped around 25.2% at the time of writing. Recently, the clinical-stage pharmaceutical company announced the pricing of an underwritten common stock public offering of 15 million shares for $3 per share.

The gross proceeds of the offering are likely to be $45 million, excluding underwriting discounts and commissions, and other costs. These proceeds are expected to be used for costs related to clinical trials and other R&D expenses.

Notably, the underwriters have been granted a 45-day option to purchase up to an additional 2.25 million shares of common stock.

In earnings news, the multinational computer technology corporation Oracle Corp. (ORCL) reported strong results for the fiscal fourth quarter. The company reported quarterly revenues of $11.23 billion, up 8% year-over-year, and surpassed analysts’ expectations of $11.04 billion. The outstanding performance was primarily driven by cloud services and license support revenues, which increased 8% to $7.4 billion.

Oracle reported Q4 adjusted earnings of $1.54 per share, up 29% from the same quarter last year, and beat the consensus estimates of $1.31.

Oracle CTO Larry Ellison commented, “The world’s two most popular databases are the Oracle Autonomous Database and Oracle MySQL. Independent analysts have tested and confirmed that Oracle MySQL with HeatWave runs 10 to 100 times faster than Amazon's version of MySQL called Aurora. This technological breakthrough is causing several of Amazon's customers to start moving their Aurora workloads to Oracle MySQL. And industry analysts are telling us they are seeing a 10x increase in Oracle Cloud Infrastructure customer inquiries. Both the Oracle Autonomous Database and Oracle MySQL with HeatWave technology have captured the technology high-ground in the cloud database business-and that bodes well for the future of the Oracle Cloud.”

In M&A news, General Motors (GM) and Westinghouse Air Brake Technologies (Wabtec) (WAB) are likely to enter a partnership deal. Per the terms, the two companies will collaborate to advance and commercialize the automaker’s battery and fuel cell technologies for use in Wabtec locomotives.

General Motors’ Ultium battery technology is expected to offer flexibility, efficiency, power, and reliability for use in the rail system, while the compact fuel cell power cubes can be applied in several areas, including locomotives.

General Motors’ President Mark Reuss said, “Rail networks are critical to transportation and to GM’s ability to serve our customers across North America, and Wabtec's bold plan to de-carbonize heavy haul and other locomotive applications helps advance our vision of a world with zero crashes, zero emissions and zero congestion. Wabtec's decision to deploy GM's Ultium battery and HYDROTEC hydrogen fuel cell systems further validates our advanced technology and demonstrates its versatility.”

In other news, Apple (AAPL) has introduced a new marketplace for premium podcast subscriptions. Apple Podcasts Subscriptions, the new offering, will allow people in more than 170 regions and countries to buy subscriptions to their favorite individual shows and groups of shows through channels.

Apple is a tech giant leading the world of innovation through its iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple Watch products. Some of the biggest software platforms led by iOS, macOS, and tvOS are also operated by the company.

Apple Music and Beats VP Oliver Schusser said, “Listeners can’t get enough of their favourite podcasts and want a simple way to support the extraordinary creators who make them possible. Now, listeners can enjoy new content and additional benefits for thousands of new and popular podcasts, alongside millions of free shows, with more arriving every week.”

Meanwhile, the digital payment and financial technology company Mogo Inc. (MOGO) announced that it now owns 39% of Coinsquare, after having purchased an additional 2% of Coinsquare’s common stock in a cash and stock deal. Coinsquare is Canada’s leading cryptocurrency platform, and it continues to experience rapid growth in assets, revenue, and operating profitability.

Per the terms of the deal, 655,644 Coinsquare shares were purchased from shareholder Michael Diamond and two affiliated companies (vendors) in exchange for 378,774 shares of MOGO, along with a cash payment of $5 million. Notably, MOGO has the option to snap up another 3.4% of Coinsquare shares from the vendors until October 13, subject to certain regulatory approvals.

Palantir Technologies (PLTR), a software company, partnered with Origin Materials, the global leader of carbon-negative materials, to speed up the world’s evolution to net-zero carbon emissions. Origin’s expertise and technology, along with Palantir’s data integration and modeling capabilities, will focus on decarbonizing the global materials supply chain.

Palantir’s COO Shyam Sankar said, “We are deeply energized by Origin’s meaningful progress against the world’s net zero ambition. Our platform is uniquely suited to support the decarbonization of complex global supply chains. Customers across dozens of industries are using Foundry to build a carbon-focused common operating picture that allows them to track live emissions, simulate scenarios based on emerging technologies and regulations, and make real-time changes to their business.”