(Reuters) – Shares in Bayer AG hit nearly ten years low on Thursday after an American jury awarded $ 80 million to a man claiming to use the group's plant killer Roundup caused his cancer, with thousands of similar trials being threatened. 19659002] The jury of the San Francisco Federal Court on Wednesday found Bayer responsible for its Monsanto unit not alerting Edwin Hardeman about the herbicide's alleged cancer risks.
German chemical giant Bayer, who bought the Roundup manufacturer Monsanto Co. last year for $ 63 billion, said it would appeal the verdict.
Your shares were down 1.3% at EUR 55.59 at 6:23 pm Thursday, valuing the group of drugs and crop chemicals at around EUR 52 billion ($ 58 billion), well below the Monsanto price tag.
However, the stock was afraid of the type of disruption it suffered last week when it fell 9.6% on the jury's conclusion ̵
The trial is only the second of more than 11,200 Roundup trials to be tried in the United States.
In the first trial, a California man was awarded the damage by a jury of the state court in August, which was later reduced to $ 78 million.
Analysts at JP Morgan Chase & Co. and Liberum said Bayer's market value reflected exaggerated pessimistic expectations of the German group, which ultimately ran up to EUR 20 billion and EUR 40 billion, respectively.
Although Monsanto / Bayer can win some cases, there is great uncertainty about the number of wins and defeats. Therefore, we expect Bayer to try to resolve the remaining cases, says analyst Jean-Jacques Le Fur, Bryan Garnier & Co.
Mr. Hardeman's case was considered a bellwether attempt to help determine the damage and define settlement options for the more than 760 other federal cases pending in the same court prior to the US district director Vince Chhabria. Other cases will be heard in state courts.
"This judgment does not change the weight of over four decades of extensive science and the conclusions of regulators worldwide that support the safety of our glyphosate-based herbicides and that they are not carcinogenic," Bayer said.
Monsanto's Roundup was the first to contain glyphosate, the world's most widely used weed killer. But it is no longer patented and many other versions are available.
Bayer does not provide sales information for the product, and analysts no longer consider it an important profit driver.
Genetically modified crops that resist the glyphosate's plant killing effect, however, strongly contributes to profit at Bayer's agricultural department.
The US Environmental Protection Agency, the European Chemicals Agency and other regulators have found that glyphosate is not likely to be carcinogenic to humans. World Health Organization's cancer arm in 2015 reached another conclusion and classified glyphosate as "probably carcinogenic to humans".