What to Watch Before the Open: Coronavirus, Sprint & T-Mobile and Wells Fargo

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We’re going to go over the coronavirus, Wells Fargo  (WFC) - Get Report and the Sprint  (S) - Get Report and T-Mobile  (TMUS) - Get Report merger.

First Up: the Coronavirus

The markets reacted to ongoing fears around the virus Thursday, with the Dow closing down around 100 points.

Friday, there’s concern around the number of cases of the coronavirus outside of China after South Korea reported 100 new cases, which brings the country’s total to over 200.

There are over 75,000 cases and 2,000 deaths from the virus.

Let’s Talk Mergers

Sprint and T-Mobile have amended terms of their merger.

Under the new deal, T-Mobile’s parent company, Deutsche Telekom would hold 43% of the new company, with Softbank--which is the controlling holder of Sprint--holding 24%.

However, the exchange ratio for common shareholders will remain the same -- 9.75 shares of Sprint for a single T-Mobile share.

Softbank’s exchange ratio will be 11 Sprint shares for each T-Mobile share.

The changes are due to Softbank giving Deutsche Telekom a slightly higher ownership stake due to Sprint’s financials declining in the two years since the merger was announced.

The companies plan to close the merger by April 1.

And Then There’s Wells Fargo

According to the New York Times, Wells Fargo is close to settlements with the Department of Justice and Securities & Exchange Commission over the probes into its sales practices.

Since the news broke back in 2016 that the bank’s sales practices had encouraged employees to open unauthorized bank accounts to hit sales targets, Wells Fargo has paid out over $4 billion in fines and penalties.

The settlement could be announced as soon as Friday, according to the report. 

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