The R&D Index: Market Watch for the week ending April 28, 2017 closed at 1,630.76 for the 25 companies in the R&D Index. The Index was up 2.53% (or 40.21 basis points) over the week ending April 21, 2017. Only two R&D Index companies lost value last week from -0.06% (IBM) to -0.47% (Intel). Twenty-three R&D Index companies gained value last week, from 0.21% (Eli Lilly) to 7.98% (Bayer AG).
Research on self-driving vehicles was in the news last week from a variety of aspects. Waymo, the self-driving unit of Google parent, Alphabet, continued its accusations of Uber copying its design plans for a laser sensor used in autonomous vehicles. The accusations involve failing to reveal the technologies in federal dispositions and claim the theft of trade secrets from Waymo to jump start Uber’s self-driving system development. A former Waymo employee who left Waymo in January 2016 is stated as taking 14,000 Waymo files when he left and then developing similar technologies for Uber.
R&D Index member Apple was also revealed last week to be seen testing self-driving Lexus vehicles in California last week. Apple had previously been granted a license to test such vehicles by the state. Analysts note that the Apple vehicle is utilizing mostly off-the-shelf components for its vehicle and is primarily testing its in-house developed software. The research team conducting the Apple tests consist of roboticists who previously worked for NASA. Apple joins other research teams from Ford, GM, Uber, Tesla and Google who are aggressively pursuing the future multi-trillion-dollar market for their share of the autonomous vehicle market. Apple is estimated to have more than 1,000 researchers working on their autonomous vehicle project—code named Titan.
The U.S. Dept. of Defense last week stated the need for faster development of offensive weapons and combat tactics for space (rather than just defensive), primarily to protect the biggest, most expensive and most sophisticated U.S. spy satellites from potential attacks. The USAF has been working for many years with the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) to devise offensive strategies against weapons that could blind, jam or destroy these satellites. Research funding for these combined offensive and defensive efforts is expected to be increased over the next several years to challenge adversaries.
Apple’s legal dispute with Qualcomm over excessive royalty rates has resulted in Apple withholding royalty payments and Qualcomm reducing its 2017 profit projections by as much as 80%. Qualcomm was expected to spend as much as $6 billion on R&D in 2017 which is now at risk of being reduced.
R&D Index Week Ending April, 28, 2017
|Ticker||Exchange||2015 R&D billions$||04/21/17||04/28/17||4/28/17 to 4/21/17||4/28/17 to 1/1/16|
|Johnson & Johnson||JNJ||NYSE||9,046||121.76||123.47||1.40%||20.20%|
|Merck & Co.||MRK||NYSE||6,704||61.89||62.33||0.71%||18.00%|
|Astra Zeneca PLC||AZN||NYSE||5,997||29.76||30.25||1.65%||-10.90%|
|Eli Lilly Co||LLY||NYSE||5,331||81.89||82.06||0.21%||-2.59%|
About the R&D Index
R&D Magazine’s R&D Index is a weekly stock market summary of the top international companies involved in research and development. The top 25 industrial spenders of R&D in 2015 were selected based on the latest listings from Schonfeld & Associates’ June 2016 R&D Ratios & Budgets. These 25 companies include pharmaceutical (11 companies), automotive (5), ICT (7) and conglomerate (2) organizations who invested a cumulative total of more than $175 billion in R&D in 2015, or approximately 11% of all the R&D spent in the world by government, industries and academia combined, according to R&D Magazine’s 2016 Global R&D Funding Forecast. The stock prices used in the R&D Index are tabulated from NASDAQ, NYSE, XETRA and OTC common stock prices (in U.S. dollars) for the companies selected at the close of stock trading business on the Friday preceding the publication of the R&D Index in R&D Magazine’s R&D Daily eNewsletter.
The companies used in the R&D Index include Microsoft, Intel, Roche Holdings, Novartis, Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, Toyota Motor, General Motors, Merck & Co., Ford Motor, Cisco, Apple Computer, Sanofi SA, Qualcomm, IBM, Astra Zeneca plc, Honda Motor, Daimler, Oracle, GlaxoSmithKline, Siemens, Eli Lilly Co., Ericsson, Bristol-Myers Squibb and Bayer AG. Stock prices are based on those stocks traded on the U.S. exchanges. R&D Index trends (in the stock prices) are just one indicator of the amount of capital available to these high-technology companies to invest in R&D and should not be implied to indicate the absolute value of R&D investments made by these organizations. The companies chosen for the R&D Index have very large sophisticated internal and global R&D organizations with each company investing between $4.1 and $12.4 billion annually on their R&D efforts.