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Frontrunning: October 16

  • McDonald’s Close to Deciding Whether to Change Structure of U.S. Real Estate (WSJ)
  • Stocks Rise as Stimulus Bets Spur $4.1 Trillion Gain; Oil Climbs (BBG)
  • Wall Street bonuses likely to plunge as trading revenue drops (Reuters)
  • Syrian army launches Aleppo offensive with Iranian support (Reuters)
  • Malaysia’s Najib Razak Played Key Role at Troubled 1MDB Investment Fund (WSJ)
  • VW Loses Market Share in Europe as Diesel-Motor Recalls Loom (BBG)
  • Military families on edge as U.S. delays Afghanistan troop withdrawal (Reuters)
  • Clinton campaign winning race for Wall Street's White House cash (BBG)
  • Presidential Candidates Burn Through Cash Quickly, FEC Filings Show (WSJ)
  • Alibaba Offers $3.6 Billion in Cash for Rest of Youku Video Site (BBG)
  • First Burberry, now Hugo Boss Shares Slide as China Slump Hurts Full-Year Forecasts (BBG)
  • Trading Hits Goldman Sachs Hardest (WSJ) - no, just Goldman marks to market
  • Theranos Limits New Blood Technology to One in 200 Tests (BBG)
  • AstraZeneca Fails to Win FDA Backing for Diabetes Treatment (BBG)
  • Greek Lenders Said to Discuss Debt Exchanges Following Piraeus (BBG)
  • Spielberg Maps Future as `Bridge of Spies' Makes Cinema Debut (BBG)

 

Overnight Media Digest

WSJ

- Under pressure from regulators, laboratory firm Theranos Inc has stopped collecting tiny vials of blood drawn from finger pricks for all but one of its tests, according to a person familiar with the matter, backing away from a method the company has touted as it rose to become one of Silicon Valley's hottest startups. (http://on.wsj.com/1RLpPgZ)

- The world's biggest airline faces its biggest merger-integration test this weekend, when American Airlines shifts its US Airways unit onto its reservation system. (http://on.wsj.com/1MFMgnF)

- Albertsons Co's postponed initial public stock offering marks a setback for the beefed-up rival to supermarket leader Kroger Co, as it seeks to pare debt and invest in store upgrades to woo fickle U.S. shoppers. (http://on.wsj.com/1NfiODm)

- Tech-startup incubator Y Combinator has raised a $700 million venture-capital fund aimed at expanding ownership stakes in its most successful companies. (http://on.wsj.com/1ZHlxfR)

- Netflix is facing skepticism from credit card industry executives and experts after the firm said payment miscues contributed to worse-than-expected subscriber results.(http://on.wsj.com/1MGgGpW)

 

NYT

- Nevada regulators ruled that playing daily fantasy sports should be considered gambling, not a game of skill, and ordered websites like DraftKings and FanDuel to stop operating immediately. (http://nyti.ms/1GJs2Tv)

- After the government ordered the company to recall cars in Germany to fix deceptive software, Volkswagen expanded the effort to the entire European Union. (http://nyti.ms/1MGhGue)

- Goldman Sachs Group said that both its revenue and its profit declined more sharply than expected as the bank struggled with volatility in the financial markets. Goldman was hit particularly hard by the large investments it held in its own portfolio - a part of the bank that had generally done well in recent years. (http://nyti.ms/1VVX6f4)

- Y Combinator, a so-called start-up incubator, has long been known as a Silicon Valley hub for promising technologists who want to turn budding ideas into adolescent companies. To that end, Y Combinator announced on Thursday that it had raised a $700 million fund aimed at investing in later-stage companies.(http://nyti.ms/1VVXdqU)

- Lawyers suing General Motors over a defective ignition switch sent a letter to federal prosecutors in New York on Thursday, saying that the carmaker might have violated the terms of a deferred-prosecution agreement it has with the Justice Department. (http://nyti.ms/1KcvhD2)

 

China

SHANGHAI SECURITIES NEWS

- There are no long-term devaluation pressures on China's currency, the renminbi, the head of the central bank's economic research division Yao Yudong said on Thursday.

CHINA SECURITIES JOURNAL

- Over 60 percent of Chinese firms listed on the Small and Medium-sized Enterprise (SME) Board forecast an increase in net profits for the January-September period, according to an analysis of company filings by the official paper.

CHINA BUSINESS NEWS

- Around 677 Internet loan platforms have faced difficulties, withdrawing deposits or other issues since 2015, according to a recent report from online loans portal www.wangdaizhijia.com.

CHINA DAILY

- China needs to support new areas of economic growth to counter downward pressure from some traditional industries, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said at a meeting of ministers and officials on Tuesday.

SHANGHAI DAILY

- China now has more dollar billionaires than the United States, according to the Hurun Rich List 2015 published on Thursday. Real estate tycoon Wang Jianlin overtook Alibaba Group Holding Ltd founder Jack Ma as China's richest man

 

Canada

THE GLOBE AND MAIL

** Ontario's industrial heartland is losing more skilled jobs as Illinois-based Caterpillar Inc cuts costs and closes its Electro-Motive Diesel rail locomotive office in London, Ontario. (http://bit.ly/1hInwOH)

** Bombardier Inc, struggling to find established airlines as buyers for its new C Series airliner, is in talks about a possible order from JetBlue Airways Corp, two people familiar with the matter said. (http://bit.ly/1GJVokD)

** The former chair of the board of governors at the University of British Columbia resigned from the executive body, as the university released a report that found the institution had failed to protect and support the academic freedom of a professor in the Sauder School of Business. (http://bit.ly/1k8cqUM)

NATIONAL POST

** Canadian auto-parts maker Linamar Corp is betting that aluminum will continue to replace steel as automakers strive to produce more fuel-efficient vehicles, announcing the biggest acquisition in its 50-year history on Thursday. (http://bit.ly/1PlBV1U)

** Amid criticism for seeking lobbying advice from the co-chair of Justin Trudeau's Liberal election campaign, TransCanada Corp said many companies are making similar preparations for life after the federal election. At the same time, the company confirmed that Dan Gagnier, who stepped down as co-chair of the Liberal election campaign this week, has worked as a contractor for the company since the spring. (http://bit.ly/1PlCbhn)

** Justin Trudeau scolded supporters who heckled a reporter during a news conference in Montreal on Thursday. "Hey! Hey! We have respect for journalists in this country," Trudeau shouted. "They ask tough questions and they're supposed to. OK?" (http://bit.ly/1RLjEtj)

 

Britain

The Times

- The Prudential Regulation Authority, which is part of the Bank of England, today provided guidance on the extra capital which, at 2.2 billion pounds ($3.40 billion)to 3.3 billion pounds, is less than 1 percent of their existing capital bases. Big banks such as, Barclays PLC, HSBC Holdings PLC , Lloyds Banking Group PLC, Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC, Santander UK PLC and Co-operative Bank may have to hold more than 3 billion pounds in extra capital because of new rules to make their high street lending operations safer. (http://thetim.es/1QyAZEL)

- Volkswagen AG will recall 8.5 million vehicles across Europe as the diesel emissions scandal engulfing the company continues to escalate. The carmaker announced that vehicles will be taken off the road across the Continent to have pollution cheating software stripped out following an intervention by the German automotive watchdog. (http://thetim.es/1RdCick)

The Guardian

- Treasury moves to dilute a key part of the new regime intended to make top bank bosses more accountable will face scrutiny from a powerful committee of MP's next week. In a move seen as a sign that the government is softening its stance toward the industry, the Treasury said that it was dropping a plan to "reverse the burden of proof" for managers, which would have forced them to demonstrate they had done the right thing if wrongdoing emerged on their watch. (http://bit.ly/1Lm6oGZ)

- The United Kingdom financial system is at high risk of being used to launder billions of pounds of corrupt cash through "known professional enablers" in the legal and property professions, according to a new report. The national risk assessment of money laundering and terrorist financing warned that the country's banking, accountancy and legal services sectors were at a high risk of exposure to handling corrupt money. (http://bit.ly/1LwtAGa)

The Telegraph

- The new boss of crisis-hit Volkswagen AG, Matthias Mueller, says the company will be able to recover from the emissions scandal in as a little as two years. He added that it could take until the end of the year before an external investigation reveals exactly who in the company knew what about the "defeat devices" and when they knew it. (http://bit.ly/1LQZq2h)

- The rules on United Kingdom visas for foreign technology specialists are to be radically overhauled after complaints from industry giants and start-ups that they were struggling to recruit enough staff to match their growth. The government is due to make it easier for non-EU citizens with specialist technology skills to enter the country for work by introducing a series of new ways to meet the criteria. (http://bit.ly/1QyCFOy)

Sky News

- The National Grid has insisted it has the "right tools" in place to cope with this winter's energy demands. The company's Winter Outlook report said that without the measures it had put in place, spare capacity - the gap between generating capacity and peak demand - would plunge to just 1.2 percent. (http://bit.ly/1LQZFdz)

- Tesco PLC is selling 14 supermarket development sites it does not want in a move that will boost its cost-cutting drive and potentially provide more space for badly-needed homes. Tesco said it was getting 250 million pounds for the Spenhill sites, which were sold to a fund and clients advised by Meyer Bergman. (http://bit.ly/1NKuyAL)

The Independent

- Southern Solar has become the latest renewable energy firm to collapse, with its chief executive claiming that the government is "sabotaging" United Kingdom jobs and businesses. The news that it had gone into administration prompted the Solar Trade Association to warn that most companies in its industry were not expecting to survive next year. (http://ind.pn/1jrmxUK)