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Wall Street Journal (January 21)

2018/ 01/ 23 by jd in Global News

Carl Icahn the largest investor in Xerox has formed an alliance with billionaire Darwin Deason, the third largest investor, “to encourage the printer and copier giant to explore a potential sale…. The fact that they are working together and own such a big stake is sure to ratchet up the pressure on a company that is grappling with slumping demand as the world becomes more digital—and is already considering a major transaction.” Due to its “strategic importance,” the Fuji Xerox joint venture “would likely be at the center of any review.”

 

New York Times (January 21)

2018/ 01/ 22 by jd in Global News

The Government shutdown spotlights Donald Trump’s major shortcoming. The current President proved “woefully inept at making tough deals…. Trump is an unrepentant, unremitting liar. That makes deal-making impossible. His word is meaningless and his policy principles are murky. He is mercurial and inconsistent. This may well have worked in business, to keep people off kilter, but it won’t work in politics.”

 

The Economist (January 20)

2018/ 01/ 21 by jd in Global News

“China still lags far behind America in its space accomplishments, but it does not appear bent on a cold-war-style race. It spends far less on its civil space programme than the $19.7bn that NASA was allocated last year.” Still, “China is doggedly pursuing its goals” and is attuned to the progress being made by India, which “is planning its first soft-landing on the moon in March,” just four years after China’s moon landing. With India set to overtake China as the world’s most populous nation in the next four years, China is keenly aware that its still smaller neighbor is in hot pursuit.

 

Newsweek (January 18)

2018/ 01/ 20 by jd in Global News

“As 2018 begins, the United States has become the largest producer of gas, oil, and coal in history. Its stock market is at record levels. The economy is growing at a 3 percent rate—and unemployment may dip below 4 percent, even though some commentators have claimed over the last decade that it likely would never fall below 5 percent again. The auto, steel, manufacturing, financial, agricultural, and high-tech industries are ascendant.”

 

Harvard Gazette (January 18)

2018/ 01/ 19 by jd in Global News

“What’s new in the current phase of the ongoing North Korean nuclear crisis is the Kim regime’s early stage capability to put the continental U.S. at risk…. North Korea is no longer viewed mainly as a threat to U.S. allies and interests in Northeast Asia. If diplomatic efforts collapse, we’re likely to see a dramatic increase in U.S. military pressure on North Korea, with the goal of compelling the regime to rapidly denuclearize.”

 

Institutional Investor (January 16)

2018/ 01/ 18 by jd in Global News

“BlackRock CEO Larry Fink has written a letter to CEOs detailing his requests for corporate stewardship as the firm moves toward shareholder activism year-round…. The letter is the latest move by an asset manager to focus more on shareholder activism and environmental, social and governance criteria in investments. For instance, BlackRock competitor Vanguard Group said in an August report that it is taking a more active approach to monitoring companies in its portfolio, while a McKinsey & Co. study published in October found that asset managers no longer consider ESG a niche strategy.”

 

Fortune (January 16)

2018/ 01/ 17 by jd in Global News

“Bitcoin and other digital currencies have always been volatile, so a big daily drop is not unusual. That said, Tuesday was a particularly ugly day for crypto investors as every major currency fell by anywhere from 15% to 28%. A back-of-the-envelope calculation by Fortune shows that the top 10 currencies had collectively lost $108 billion in 24 hours as of 3 pm ET on Tuesday.”

 

Reuters (January 15)

2018/ 01/ 16 by jd in Global News

“London’s once red-hot housing market has slowed for the past year due to a double hit from higher purchase taxes on expensive homes and the June 2016 Brexit vote, which hurt demand from foreign buyers and raised fears of big job losses in the capital’s financial industry.” The average asking price dropped 3.5%, year on year, to approximately 601,000 pounds.

 

The Economist (January 13)

2018/ 01/ 15 by jd in Global News

“To many, India feels like the heir apparent. Its population will soon overtake its Asian rival’s. It occasionally grows at the kind of pace that propelled China to the status of economic superpower.” But there is one big snag in many marketers’ dreams: India’s middle class “scarcely exists.” Only 8 million Indian adults make $20,000 annually and “the chances of India developing a middle class to match the Middle Kingdom’s are being throttled by growing inequality.”

 

Bloomberg (January 12)

2018/ 01/ 14 by jd in Global News

“Since Kuroda took office five years ago, bank stocks have underperformed the broader market by more than 50 percentage points,” but there are signs that  Japanese banks will soon lose their “cheapest in the world” status. Despite a 5.7% average ROE, large Japanese financial institutions trade at just 0.69 of book. If, as widely expected, the BoJ relaxes its yield curve control, these large financial institutions would receive a welcome boost.

 

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