Last week when I shared that Monsanto had been ordered to pay $289.2 million to former school groundskeeper Dewayne Johnson, currently dying of cancer (due to the Roundup he used) I suggested that perhaps this trial- the first of thousands– was the first crack in their wall. And I may have been right.

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This morning, Bayer (BAYGn.DE) shares plunged more than 10 percent likely in response to Friday’s judgment. While Monsanto plans to appeal the verdict, I don’t think even they can stop this train. Now that emails have been leaked and the science has been done showing the chemical is not safe, the end feels near. (And Bayer just shelled out how much money to buy up Monsanto?)

  • Today, Bayer shares were down 11 percent at 83.04 euros at 0915 GMT, the worst performing stock on the Stoxx Europe 600 index.1
  • Glyphosate-exposed stocks also plunged in Asia and particularly in Australia where a withering drought has already hit herbicide sales.2
  • Australian chemical maker Nufarm Ltd (NUF.AX), which Macquarie Bank analysts estimate earns about a fifth of its revenue from glyphosate-based products, plunged almost 17 percent to a more than two-year low.3
  • And its top shareholder, Japan’s Sumitomo Chemical Co Ltd (4005.T), shed 3 percent, while Australian rural services firm Elders Ltd (ELD.AX), which retails herbicides, fell 11 percent to a nine-month low.4

Barclays analysts worry that Bayer could have a real problem on their hands, especially if the judgment isn’t reversed altogether as “…a large number of similar pending cases will now likely multiply.”5 And that could affect future revenues. After all, GM crops have been the main source of cash for Monsanto.

Bayer Shares Plunge After Monsanto Loses Roundup Cancer Trial

Aug.13 — Bayer AG shares plunged the most in nearly seven years after Monsanto Co. lost a trial related to Roundup weed killer. Bloomberg’s Naomi Kresge reports on “Bloomberg Surveillance.”

We may soon see retailers in the US curbing sales of Roundup products. It’s already happening in Britain; Homebase, one of their largest home and garden improvement retailers, is reviewing the sale of glyphosate-containing products in the light of the jury’s decision. And Germany and France have taken steps to phase out use of the weedkiller.

Stay tuned! We will update you as more information becomes available.

Sources and References

  1. Reuters, August 13, 2018.
  2. Reuters, August 13, 2018.
  3. Reuters, August 13, 2018.
  4. Reuters, August 13, 2018.
  5. Reuters, August 13, 2018.