Skip to Content

Virgin America’s IPO, Dollar Tree buying a rival — five things to know about today

Virgin America Joins Ranks Of U.S. Low-Fare AirlinesVirgin America Joins Ranks Of U.S. Low-Fare Airlines
Virgin Group chairman Sir Richard Branson.Photo by Justin Sullivan—Getty Images

Hello, friends and Fortune readers.

Today kicks off a mega-week of economic data. On Wednesday we’ll learn the latest GDP reading, which is expected to have expanded at a rate of 3.2%, and Friday morning brings the July jobs report. To hold us over until those big numbers, here’s what you need to know about in business news today.

1. Virgin America is looking to go public.

The airline owned by billionaire Richard Branson has filed for a proposed IPO worth $115 million (a placeholder amount that could change). Virgin America provides service to 22 airports across the U.S. and Mexico with a fleet of 53 jets. The airline plans to disperse a portion of the funds to employees as part of its worker-ownership program and put the remaining capital to work across its business. Barclays and Deutsche Bank are managing the offering.

2. Dollar Tree snaps up rival Family Dollar.

Dollar Tree (DLTR) will pay about $8.5 billion to acquire Family Dollar, helping to close the gap on competitors Dollar General (DG) and Wal-Mart (WM). The cash-and-stock offer is worth $74.50 a share, roughly a 23% premium over Family Dollar’s closing price Friday. One of the biggest winners in the deal is Carl Icahn, who announced a 9.39% stake in Family Dollar in June. He walked away from the deal with about $132 million.

3. Zillow purchases Trulia.

The deal has been rumored for some time, and now it’s finally official: Zillow agreed Monday to purchase Trulia for about $3.5 billion in stock, creating a behemoth in the online real estate listings business.

4. The mega-week of economic data starts today.

The Purchasing Managers Index, or PMI, which is an indicator of the health of the manufacturing sector, comes out at 9:45 a.m. ET today. Economists expect the reading to drop to 60, down from 61.2 last month. Any number above 50 is good news, indicating that manufacturing is expanding. PMI numbers are followed by the Dallas Fed’s manufacturing survey at 10:30 a.m. ET, which is expected to grow to 12 from a prior 11.4. Also out today: pending home sales at 10:00 a.m ET, which are expected to show a modest gain for the month.

5. Will Ballmer win the Clippers?

Final arguments will be heard today in the trial determining whether Donald Sterling’s estranged wife can sell the Los Angeles Clippers to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer for $2 billion. Sterling’s lawyers plan to argue that Shelly Sterling had no standing to make the sale, even though Sterling had provided written approval to make a sale. Many are hoping for a conclusion to the case before NBA owners meet on Aug. 15.