Today, shares of Palantir Technologies (NYSE:PLTR) are on the move. Currently, investors in PLTR stock have booked a paper gain of 6% at the time of writing amid an intriguing turn of events in the company’s battle with Open Democracy over a U.K. contract it was awarded for the NHS.
Today, investors in PLTR stock are more assured the situation isn’t as dire as initially expected.
That said, this remains a he-said, she-said scenario, so let’s dive into what has transpired.
PLTR Stock Volatility Tied to Transparency Concerns
In March of last year, Palantir was contracted by the National Health Service in the United Kingdom to use some of its data solutions for the country’s Covid-19 response. This has contributed to growing skepticism about the integrity and safety of U.K. patient data, among some groups. Palantir’s ties to the CIA have been cited as a key reason for such skepticism.
Recently, a U.K. group called Open Democracy filed a lawsuit against the British government. The lawsuit alleged the government entered into a secretive deal with “spy tech” firm Palantir. Open Democracy calls itself an “independent global media organisation” with the goal of “reporting and analysis of social and political issues… to educate citizens to challenge power and encourage democratic debate across the world.”
In a post yesterday, Open Democracy touted victory in this lawsuit. Furthermore, the organization claims that the government caved to its wishes, “committing not to extend Palantir’s contract beyond COVID without consulting the public. There will be no more mission creep without assessing our rights. They have also agreed to engage the public, via patient juries, about whether firms like Palantir are appropriate for a long-term role in the NHS at all.”
The Plot Thickens
Today, the NHS fired back in response to these claims. A BBC article that came out today in response to these claims tells quite a different story. The NHS says “it always acted legally, and that [Open Democracy] campaigners dropped the case ‘when they realised they didn’t have a leg to stand on.'”
Additionally, the NHS praised Palantir for helping analyze large volumes of data generated by governments and businesses. Through Palantir’s analysis, “useful insights patterns and connections” were able to be made in the fight against Covid-19.
Furthermore, the NHS said that Open Democracy withdrew its lawsuit.
The NHS has said it would be more transparent in the future. So, in some ways, Open Democracy got what it ultimately wanted. However, it appears investors are siding with Palantir on this one right now. Indeed, according to NHS representatives, the Palantir deal worth 23 million euros is still ongoing.
In other words, this story appears to be moot right now. Investors are certainly viewing this “no news is good news” scenario positively.
On the date of publication, Chris MacDonald did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article.