Chevron Corp. (NYSE:CVX): Current price $119.77
Early Friday morning, there was a furnace fire in the “cracking 2 area” at Chevron’s Pascagoula refinery in Mississippi, which resulted in the death of one worker. The fire occurred at 2 a.m. Central Time at the company’s 330,000 barrel per day plant, spokesman Kurt Glaubitz said in an e-mailed statement to Bloomberg. Jackson County deputy director of emergency services Terry Jackson said that the cracking 2 unit has been shut but that the rest of the refinery is not.
E.I. DuPont de Nemours & Co. (NYSE:DD): Current price $61.76
DuPont was pleased at the news of its gaining more than than a percentage point in the North American corn market share, pushed by its Pioneer seed arm’s strong performance. The growth was also helped along by impressive 2013 harvest results coming from a competitive product lineup and innovative decision services, according to a company press release. Industry-topping agronomic and tech support, and brand products assisted the Pioneer business in delivering sales growth of 11 percent year-to-date through September and strong yield performance on growers’ farms, as well.
Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK): Current price $47.84
Merck announced Friday that its German unit, Merck KGaA, has invested $107.67 million in a manufacturing facility in China, emphasizing the importance of the market for world drug companies. The plant will come online in 2017, producing drugs to treat China’s rapidly growing number of diabetics along with cardiovascular and thyroid disorders, according to Merck. McKinsey forecasts that spending in the China’s health care sector could almost triple to $1 trillion by 2020 from $357 billion in 2011, which has prompted a number of firms to invest in facilities in that country and set up joint ventures with local firms.