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Citi stock up after Berkshire discloses $3 billion stake, FDA approves Pfizer booster for ages 5-11

Citi shares popped after Berkshire Hathaway announced it had acquired 55 million shares of the company, the FDA approved Pfizer's COVID booster for ages 5-11, and topped Q1 sales estimates despite China lockdowns.

Video transcript


RACHELLE AKUFFO: Welcome back, everyone. It is time for our Triple Play, a look at some of the tickers that have been moving today and what's been moving them. So I'm going to kick us off with Chinese e-commerce company Now, the stock got a boost. It's currently up today about 3%. It got a boost after better than expected first quarter earnings. Now, revenue was a beat, and that's despite its slowest quarterly revenue growth on record.

Of course, COVID-related lockdowns and extra scrutiny from Chinese regulators also have been weighing on JD this quarter. Sales were up 18%, but it's the slowest year over year increase since listing on the NASDAQ in 2014. Now, the stock was also held by some supportive comments by Chinese Vice Premier Liu He. Reuters reporting that Liu told tech executives that the relationship between government and big tech should be properly managed. He also expressed an openness for more public listings. Now, that signal away from regulatory crackdowns also lifting Alibaba and Baidu. JPMorgan upgrading all three of those Chinese firms on those easing uncertainties.

SEANA SMITH: Yeah, Rachelle, what's interesting there, I think this beat so significantly by took some people by surprise just given the fact that we have seen the lockdowns occurring over in China. They've been in and out of lockdowns. Lots of questions about how significantly that's potentially going to slow or has already slowed their economy. But still, it looks like the consumer at least is relatively strong in the country. But it will be interesting to watch some of their big competitors-- you mentioned Alibaba-- about what we see from those companies here going forward over the next couple of quarters.

Bringing it back here to the US, let's take a look at Citi, because Warren Buffett, he's revamping his bet on banks, and Citi is jumping as a result. The stock getting a boost today after Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway disclosed a nearly $3 billion stake in the company. Citi has been an underperformer when it comes to some of those big bank shares. They were hovering near their lowest level in 18 months when this disclosure was announced. Now it's off just around 40% over the past year.

Berkshire also adding a $2.6 billion bet on Paramount and nearly $390 million stake in Ally Financial. And, Dave, it's pretty interesting here when we take a look at Warren Buffett's bets. Not a surprise here that we're seeing the stock move because it's so closely watched by not only Main Street, but also the institutional investors as well.

- Absolutely. You know, this is his sweet spot, some say. To hear his philosophy going back decades is, be greedy when others are fearful, right? And it's funny to see him get into Citi and completely out of Wells Fargo. So that's when you get nervous. But Wells Fargo has done fine today, surprisingly. And not seeing Netflix as an opportunity because they're down. But he does see Paramount as an opportunity, gaining 6.8 million subs. So it's always fascinating to watch them in particular when we're down.

My play Pfizer, PFE, the FDA authorizing Pfizer COVID booster shots for kids age 5 to 11 after determining a third shot can boost protection and the benefits outweigh the risks, though only 28% right now of children age 5 to 11 have received their primary series of two doses. That's as of April. Seems like COVID's coming back on us, though, reporting more than 90,000 new infections a day on average as of Sunday. That's a 30% increase over the week prior and according to the CDC data.

New York City health officials right here, they have once again recommended wearing masks while indoors. But they did not go so far as to mandate that. The only age group not approved yet for a vaccine is those children under five. Hard for parents like you, Seana. As for Pfizer shares, they are healthy. Over the past 12 months, up 27% and up more than 1% on the day to 51.25. Rachelle, it does feel like these COVID numbers continue to creep back up, but I don't see nor hear fear out there.

RACHELLE AKUFFO: And you know what it is, I think a part of it is that we've almost sort of put it in the back of our minds because we're so determined to try and return to normal. But we do have to keep in mind, we crossed that landmark of one million lives, US lives, claimed by COVID just a few days ago. So it's still very prevalent.

And obviously, you know, as a parent myself, you do wonder about vaccinating your younger ones. Mine, she's had her two shots, but in terms of boosters and what comes next. You know, with every younger generation, we get a little bit more cautious. So I understand that obviously the low rates there for the younger ones. But, you know, it's good, at least, for people who do want to get the younger ones vaccinated to have that option as well. So good for Pfizer.

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