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Frontrunning: November 6

  • Dollar at three-month high as payrolls paralysis sets in (Reuters)
  • 5 Things to Watch in the October Jobs Report (WSJ)
  • China to Lift Ban on IPOs (WSJ)
  • ArcelorMittal Is Latest Victim of China's Steel-Export Glut (BBG)
  • 'Hope to see you again': China warship to U.S. destroyer after South China Sea patrol (Reuters)
  • Giants Tighten Grip on Internet Economy (WSJ)
  • Questions Surround Valeant CEO Pearson (WSJ)
  • Steep drop in German industrial output raises questions over euro zone growth (Reuters)
  • Islamic State Affiliate at Center of Russia Jet Crash Probe (BBG)
  • Goldman Sachs attempts to woo junior bankers with swift promotions (FT)
  • Tullett Prebon May Purchase ICAP's Voice-Broking Business (BBG)
  • VW’s Porsche Unit Rejects Media Report on Manipulation Software (BBG)
  • U.S. calls Netanyahu's new media chief's remarks 'offensive' (Reuters)
  • Standard Chartered's Shares Plunge 7% After Fitch Downgrade (BBG)
  • McDonald's French fries return to Venezuela after 10 months (AP)
  • American Apparel Founder Says He's Broke and Can't Afford Lawyer (BBG)
  • China's Stock-Market Bulls Are Back, But Where Are the Earnings? (BBG)
  • New kind of "designer" immune cells clear baby's leukaemia (Reuters)
  • Has Bernie Sanders Peaked? (BBG)
  • MetLife Says Finra Staff Recommends `Significant Fine' of Broker (BBG)
  • Allergan CEO Saunders warms up to drug discovery (Reuters)
  • AstraZeneca to Buy ZS Pharma for $2.7 Billion in Cash Deal (BBG)

 

Overnight Media Digest

WSJ

- Some of the world's largest agricultural companies are looking to combine with one another as three years of shriveling crop prices have pressured profits, in what would be the industry's first big shake-up in at least a decade. Syngenta AG is discussing with DuPont a potential combination with that latter's agriculture division, according to people familiar with the matter. DuPont is also separately discussing a potential alternative agriculture deal with Dow Chemical Co, another person familiar with the matter said. (http://on.wsj.com/1iGgB93)

- Computing hardware has long served as the critical backbone of business operations. Today, the Internet economy is powered by an infrastructure that has become virtual, and is controlled by a small handful of tech giants. (http://on.wsj.com/1LTl4jl)

- United Continental Chief Executive Oscar Munoz, who suffered a heart attack three weeks ago, said he plans to return to his job at the airline in the first quarter. (http://on.wsj.com/1WDT5XU)

- The crisis around Valeant Pharmaceuticals International deepened, as questions swirled about the tenure of Chief Executive Michael Pearson and the company's shares fell to their lowest level in two and a half years. (http://on.wsj.com/1Pe1XEC)

- The first U.S. jury to hear evidence about a sprawling scheme to manipulate a key benchmark interest rate convicted two former Rabobank traders. (http://on.wsj.com/1XTTTue)

- President Barack Obama added U.S. backing to the theory that a bomb may have brought down a Russian plane in Egypt, while U.K. officials made plans to ferry out thousands of British tourists left stranded when commercial flights from Sharm El Sheikh were suspended. (http://on.wsj.com/1WDLBEa)

 

FT

The New York attorney general has launched an investigation into whether Exxon Mobil Corp misled the public and shareholders about the risks of climate change.

Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change, a group representing 118 investors, has urged the European Union to phase out outdated laboratory tests for vehicle emissions and replace them in favour of on-the-road monitoring for both CO2 and NOx emissions.

China's State Administration for Industry and Commerce has announced a campaign to weed out counterfeit Disney merchandise to develop a fair and competitive market. The crackdown against fake goods will continue until October 2016.

A NY federal jury found two former traders at Rabobank, Anthony Allen and Anthony Conti, guilty of conspiracy and wire fraud.

 

NYT

- The New York attorney general has begun an investigation of Exxon Mobil Corp to determine whether the company lied to the public about the risks of climate change or to investors about how such risks might hurt the oil business. (http://nyti.ms/1Osgw7n)

- European Union officials on Thursday put a positive economic spin on the bloc's refugee crisis. In a forecast, officials predicted that the 3 million migrants expected over the next three years would provide at least a small lift - a net gain of perhaps a quarter of 1 percent to the European economy by 2017. (http://nyti.ms/1L0kMDr)

- In an effort to appease young investment bankers over the last few years, Goldman Sachs Group Inc increased their salaries and gave them Saturdays off. Goldman Sachs announced on Thursday a three-part initiative to reduce analysts' temptation to leave the bank after two years for private equity, hedge funds or the corporate world. (http://nyti.ms/1LTHHnR)

- A jury in Manhattan on Thursday found two former London traders, Anthony Allen and Anthony Conti, guilty in the first convictions in the United States stemming from the global investigation into the rigging of an interest rate benchmark known as Libor. (http://nyti.ms/1NST93F)

- William Dudley, the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, continued to press senior bankers to clean up the culture of their firms so that they can avoid the sort of recent scandals that have undermined the reputations of big banks. (http://nyti.ms/1LTJfy8)

 

Canada

THE GLOBE AND MAIL

** China has displaced Canada as the United States's largest trading partner, a landmark shift that eliminates one of the defining characteristics of the Canadian economy.

Due in part to the crash in oil prices and the reduced value of Canada's energy exports south of the border, U.S. year-to-date trade with China has edged past the total value of U.S. trade with Canada for the first time. (http://bit.ly/1GOox3Z)

** Ongoing cost-cutting at Bell Media Inc will see the company slash about 270 jobs in Toronto and 110 more in Montreal by the end of November.

The 380 proposed cuts are outlined by Bell Media's vice-president of human resources, Anne McNamara, in a pair of letters to the new Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, MaryAnn Mihychuck. (http://bit.ly/1lalLfn)

** Home Capital Group Inc said it will take a total of nearly two years for the company to comb through all the mortgages generated by a group of nearly four dozen brokers who were suspended because of allegations their files contained falsified income documents. (http://bit.ly/1NgLh9k)

NATIONAL POST

** The federal Conservatives have chosen former health minister and Alberta MP Rona Ambrose as their interim replacement for former leader Stephen Harper. (http://bit.ly/1LUC4FX)

** Wireless provider Telus Corp is planning to reduce its workforce by 1,500 positions as it boosts dividend payments to shareholders.

The Vancouver-based company, which operates one of Canada's biggest telecommunications networks, said on Thursday the layoffs will save as much as C$125 million each year. (http://bit.ly/1PrLcEj)

** Ikea Canada will double its store count over the next 10 years, its president announced Thursday, a bold testament to the retailer's continued faith in bricks-and-mortar stores despite making sizable gains online. (http://bit.ly/1L0MwYp)

 

China

SHANGHAI SECURITIES NEWS

- China's National Development and Reform Commission is planning to adjust service prices in sectors that provide public services, such as the healthcare and natural gas industries, it said in a statement on Thursday.

CHINA SECURITIES JOURNAL

- Net profit from China's environment protection industry declined 17.63 percent in the third quarter from the second quarter, according to calculations from financial data provider Wind. Return to growth is expected in the fourth quarter.

SECURITIES TIMES

- Most listed brokerage companies achieved revenue and net profit gains in October, with nine inking more than 100 percent net profit growth, according to the paper's calculation based on the companies' financial reports.

21ST CENTURY BUSINESS HERALD

- China Telecom Corp Ltd and China Unicom recently discussed plans to cooperate and share one 4G base station, a source told the paper.

- Thirty-three specific plans will be published and practiced in 2016, alongside the country's "Made in China 2025" strategy, said Miao Wei, Minister of Industry and Information Technology on Thursday.

CHINA DAILY

- China has surpassed Canada to become the United States's top trade partner for the first time, the U.S. Department of Commerce's January-September figures showed.

- Almost 200 grassroot-level officials who were involved in 175 corruption cases over the past five years have been handed jail sentences, prosecutors in Shanghai said on Thursday.

 

Britain

The Times

Jes Staley splashed out 6.5 million pounds ($9.88 million) on shares in Barclays Plc weeks before he officially becomes the new chief executive in an effort to bolster shareholder confidence at the bank. Staley's shares swoop on Wednesday marks one of the largest one-off purchases by a UK executive of stock in a business they work for. (thetim.es/1Sty3KV)

The taxpayer lost more than 2.2 billion pounds from the sale of the British government's stake in Eurostar after the auction was rushed through before the general election, the National Audit Office said. While the spending watchdog said that the sale of the 40 percent stake was well run and provided value for money, it fell well short of the 3 billion pounds that the government invested during the past two decades. (thetim.es/1StyRiN)

The Guardian

Asda is understood to be planning to scale back its plans for Black Friday later this month after the promotional frenzy in its stores last year failed to deliver profitable sales. Trade journal Retail Week reported that Asda might consider online-only deals or spread offers over several days to prevent a chaotic rush of shoppers in its stores. (bit.ly/1StqW52)

Holiday company Thomas Cook Group Plc shares have come under pressure after Britain suspended flights to the Egyptian holiday resort of Sharm el-Sheikh. The move came amid fears that the crashed airliner Flight 9268 may have been brought down by a bomb planted by militant group Islamic State. The company said it had cancelled all flights and holidays to Sharm up until Nov. 12. (bit.ly/1StrjwK)

The Telegraph

Platinum miner Lonmin Plc saw its shares dive 10 percent after suggesting it may have to shut down if it did not secure shareholder approval for extra funding. The South Africa-based company wants to raise $400 million from shareholders and refinance $370 million in debt to stem losses from the collapse in metals prices.(bit.ly/1Ng639d)

The Bank of England has signalled that interest rates could be held at a record low well into next year as global uncertainty weighs on Britain's recovery. The pound tumbled against the dollar and euro on Thursday after Bank policymakers kept interest rates at 0.5 percent and warned that an "abrupt slowdown" in emerging markets could exert a bigger drag on UK growth and inflation. (bit.ly/1iGxPmR)

Sky News

Morrisons insists it is "making good progress" in its turnaround plans despite comparable sales falling 2.6 percent in its third quarter. The supermarket chain said that while it was continuing to invest in lower prices, it had also again reduced the number of promotional vouchers in circulation. (bit.ly/1Stqfcf)

Tata Steel Ltd has taken an 862 million pounds ($1.31 billion) hit from its beleaguered UK operations blaming a "rapid and sharp deterioration in the underlying business environment". It said Tata Steel Europe saw steel production and deliveries fall for the second quarter to the end of September, with weakness in the UK helping it sink to an underlying loss of 23.7 million pounds. (bit.ly/1Stql3i)

The Independent

Amazon.com Inc is offering unlimited same-day delivery to Prime customers in London from Nov. 5. Prime costs 79 pounds a year in the United Kingdom. After this initial subscription, Prime customers can now get over 1 million items, from DVDs to toasters, delivered the same day for no extra cost. (ind.pn/1Strx6T)