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Trade, stocks, oil and emerging markets in focus

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The Dow Jones industrial average rose 0.38 percent, or 95.02 points, to close at 25,241.41 while other major U.S. indexes finished the session lower. The S&P 500 shed 0.07 percent to close at 2,770.37 and the Nasdaq composite declined 0.7 percent to 7,635.07, bringing an end to its four-day winning streak as large-cap technology shares contributed to losses.

Trade developments continued to feature prominently, with U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross telling CNBC that a deal had been reached with Chinese telecommunications equipment maker ZTE, which had been crippled after U.S. companies were blocked from selling to it.

The deal will impose a $1 billion penalty on ZTE, which will also need to install a U.S.-chosen compliance team, but is facing some pushback from U.S. lawmakers.

Also in focus was a sell-off in emerging markets, with Brazil leading declines. The iShares MSCI Brazil ETF (EWZ), a U.S. exchange-traded fund tracking Brazilian stocks, dropped 5.13 percent.

Investors turned to bonds amid concerns over emerging markets, with U.S. government debt prices rising in the last session. The 10-year U.S. Treasury note yield declined to 2.92 percent from around 2.97 percent seen on Wednesday.

On the energy front, oil prices advanced as investors worried about a drop in Venezuelan exports. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude rose 1.88 percent to settle at $65.95 per barrel and Brent crude futures added 2.6 percent to $77.32.

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Tesla is reportedly shipping 7,000 made-in-China cars to Europe

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A gigafactory of electric carmaker Tesla is seen in Shanghai, China October 18, 2019.

Aly Song | Reuters

BEIJING — Tesla will begin shipping made-in-China electric cars to Europe on Tuesday, according to Chinese media reports.

About 7,000 Model 3s made at the Shanghai gigafactory are set for arrival in Belgium at the end of next month, with planned deliveries to countries including Germany, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Switzerland and Sweden, state-backed news outlet The Paper said Monday.

Tesla did not immediately respond to a CNBC request for comment.

Covid-19, which first emerged late last year in the Chinese city of Wuhan, has hampered the ability of businesses around the world to resume work. The spread of the disease stalled within China earlier this year. But the pandemic has persisted in the United States and Europe, and countries in the West continue to grapple with concerns about a second wave.

Following past manufacturing issues, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the automaker produced 143,036 vehicles in the third quarter. The company said Model 3 production capacity for the Shanghai factory has now reached 250,000 units a year in the year since it opened.

Last week, Chinese regulators announced that Tesla is recalling up to 48,442 of its U.S.-made Model S and Model X cars that were sold to customers in China, due to potentially faulty and unsafe front and rear suspensions.

Because of supportive government policies and less costly technology, analysts predict that Europe and China — the largest auto market in the world — will see significant growth in electric vehicle sales in the coming years.

CNBC’s Lora Kolodny contributed to this report.

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Our coronavirus vaccine triggers adult immune response

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A test tube labelled vaccine is seen in front of AstraZeneca logo in this illustration taken, September 9, 2020.

Dado Ruvic | Reuters

LONDON — British pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca on Monday said its potential Covid-19 vaccine has produced a similar immune response in older and younger adults.

AstraZeneca, which is developing its potential Covid-19 vaccine in collaboration with the University of Oxford, said adverse responses to the vaccine among the elderly were also found to be lower.

The World Health Organization has said that older people, in addition to people of all ages with preexisting medical conditions, appear to develop serious illness on contracting the coronavirus more often than others.

The announcement is likely to boost hopes of a Covid vaccine being developed before the end of the year.

“It is encouraging to see immunogenicity responses were similar between older and younger adults and that reactogenicity was lower in older adults, where the COVID-19 disease severity is higher,” an AstraZeneca spokesman told CNBC via email.

“The results further build the body of evidence for the safety and immunogenicity of AZD1222,” the spokesman said, referring to the technical name of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine.

Shares of the company rose 1% in Monday’s U.S. premarket.

Drugmakers and research centers are scrambling to deliver a safe and effective vaccine in an attempt to bring an end to the coronavirus pandemic that has claimed over 1.15 million lives.

Dozens of candidate vaccines are in clinical evaluation, according to the World Health Organization, with some already conducting late-stage tests before seeking formal approval.

The vaccine being developed by the University of Oxford and AstraZeneca is thought to be one of the frontrunners to secure regulatory approval.

AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soirot has previously said the drugmaker’s vaccine would likely provide protection against contracting the coronavirus for about a year.

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Ant Group to raise $34.5 billion in the biggest IPO of all time

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The Ant Group logo and the Alibaba Group logo are displayed at the company’s headquarters in Hangzhou, China.

Qilai Shen | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Ant Group will raise $34.5 billion in its dual initial public offering (IPO) after setting the price for its shares on Monday, making it the biggest listing of all time.

The Chinese financial technology giant previously said it would split its stock issuance equally across Shanghai and Hong Kong, issuing 1.67 billion new shares in each location.

Ant Group’s Shanghai-listed shares will be priced at 68.8 yuan each. The issuing of 1.67 billion shares will raise 114.94 billion yuan or $17.23 billion, according to the exchange rate listed in the official filings.

The Hong Kong-listed shares have been priced at 80 Hong Kong dollars each, raising 133.65 billion Hong Kong dollars or $17.24 billion.

The listing will raise a total of just under $34.5 billion, with the possibility for that figure to go higher if the so-called over-allotment option is exercised, depending on demand. It makes it the largest IPO of all time, putting it ahead of previous record holder Saudi Aramco, which raised just over $29 billion.

Ant’s valuation based on the pricing will be $313.37 billion, larger than some of the biggest banks in the U.S., including Goldman Sachs and Wells Fargo.

The Chinese company previously said that strategic investors have agreed to subscribe to 80% of the company’s Shanghai-issued shares. Alibaba, via its subsidiary Zhejiang Tmall Technology, has agreed to buy 730 million A-shares, which are yuan-denominated shares of Chinese companies listed in mainland exchanges. This will allow Alibaba to maintain its roughly 33% stake in Ant Group.

Ant’s pricing comes after regulators in mainland China and Hong Kong gave the green light for the listing last week.

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