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Frontrunning: September 1

  • Charting the Market: New Month, Same China (BBG)
  • China jitters send stocks tumbling (Reuters)
  • Oil falls on weak China factory data (Reuters)
  • Euro zone factory growth eases in August despite modest price rises (Reuters)
  • Euro-Area Joblessness Falls to Lowest Level Since Early 2012 (BBG)
  • Clinton friend advised on U.S. politics, foreign policy (Reuters)
  • Korea exports slump as Asia's woes deepen (Reuters)
  • Greenlight Capital Down 14% for Year; David Einhorn Surveys Investors (NYT)
  • U.S. weighs sanctioning Russia as well as China in cyber attacks (Reuters)
  • China’s Economic Woes Echo Across Asia (WSJ)
  • Headlines from 2010-2015: Economists Are Split Over Whether the Fed Will Raise Rates in September (BBG)
  • Manhattan Gets First Crowdfunded Condos (BBG)
  • China to set up $9 billion fund for small, medium-sized firms - state radio (Reuters)
  • Glorious Property Misses More Loan Repayments as Sales Drop (BBG)
  • Nasdaq to Sell Surveillance Technology to China (WSJ)
  • The Science Behind Trump-Mania (BBG)

 

Overnight Media Digest

WSJ

- Oil prices soared Monday, marking their strongest three-day rally since Iraq's 1990 invasion of Kuwait, on doubts the global glut of crude would be as long-lasting as many investors and traders had earlier believed. (http://on.wsj.com/1KXzziL)

- Years before natural and organic foods exploded in popularity, cereal behemoth Kellogg Co acquired one of the segment's pioneers: Kashi Co. Fixing its Kashi brand is key to bulking up sales in the fast-growing natural and organic food aisles, says Kellogg Chief Executive John Bryant. (http://on.wsj.com/1JtpEBi)

- California lawmakers gave final approval to legislation that seeks to ensure equal compensation for women in the workplace by prohibiting employers from paying differing wages to employees who do "substantially similar work." (http://on.wsj.com/1UiRQ4q)

- A patent law change pushed by the pharmaceutical industry could cost federal healthcare programs $1.3 billion over a decade by delaying new generic drugs, the Congressional Budget Office estimates. (http://on.wsj.com/1hPRwsQ)

- Two major public pension funds joined the drive for Bank of America Corp shareholders to oppose a corporate bylaw change that lets Brian Moynihan serve as both chief executive and chairman. California Public Employees' Retirement System and California State Teachers' Retirement System sent a letter to the bank Monday disclosing they will vote against the change. (http://on.wsj.com/1FefYZT)

- Four months after announcing a sweeping U.S. recall, ice-cream maker Blue Bell Creameries LP is embarking on one of the food industry's more ambitious recovery attempts. The Texas company's ice-cream cartons began reappearing in grocery stores in several cities on Monday, a major step after Blue Bell yanked all of its products following a deadly listeria outbreak and confronted a financial crisis that nearly put it out of business. (http://on.wsj.com/1PHVgHk)

- Americans for Tax Fairness, a progressive advocacy group, is pressing craft marketplace Etsy Inc to abandon a strategy that uses an Irish subsidiary to minimize taxes it owes to Uncle Sam. The coalition of labor unions and think tanks has written a letter to B Lab, asking the nonprofit to make its recertification of Etsy contingent on the company ditching its Irish tax strategy, according to a copy of the letter reviewed by The Wall Street Journal. (http://on.wsj.com/1JIsqSt)

 

FT

Maersk Oil has received approval by the UK's Oil & Gas Authority to develop the largest gas field discovered in the UK North Sea in more than a decade, the Danish oil company said on Monday. Maersk Oil and its co-venture partners, JX Nippon and BP Plc, will invest around 3 billion pounds ($4.61 billion) in the development.

Commodity trader Trafigura said it raised its stake in Pacific Exploration & Production Corp to more than 10 percent, strengthening its ties with the Canadian oil and gas producer.

The Scottish government said on Monday that Jim McColl's Ferguson Marine Engineering was the bidder it preferred to build two vessels for the state-owned Caledonian Maritime Assets fleet.

 

NYT

- The Chinese Ministry of Public Security has punished at least 197 people in recent days for "spreading rumors" online, it said. Its announcement did not give details, but the accused have presumably been detained. (http://nyti.ms/1ieO6jf)

- Major hotel chains are offering a host of benefits to lure travelers to book with them directly which include offers like digital check-in, free meals and even the ability to choose a specific room, a move aimed at encouraging guests to book directly and battle competition from online sites like Expedia Inc, Travelocity, Orbitz Worldwide Inc and Priceline Group. (http://nyti.ms/1EtLl7t)

- Japan's first commercial airliner in half a century - the Mitsubishi Regional Jet - will take its first test flight in October. The jet aims to break into the regional market dominated by Embraer of Brazil and Bombardier of Canada and is a major test of the capacity of Japan's aerospace industry to find customers beyond its borders. (http://nyti.ms/1KomBAn)

- For years, Republicans have run for office on promises of cutting taxes and bolstering business. But this election cycle, some influential party figures worry that Donald Trump's suggestions that he would raise taxes in certain areas could catch on with rivals in the presidential race. (http://nyti.ms/1JyvROL)

- In the last two months alone, the Obama administration has introduced a series of regulatory changes. Among them, a rule that would make millions more Americans eligible for extra overtime pay, and guidelines suggesting that many employers are misclassifying workers as contractors and therefore depriving them of basic workplace protections. This is part of an aggressive campaign to restore protections for workers that have been eroded by business activism. (http://nyti.ms/1ieNRER)

 

Hong Kong

SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST

- More than six in 10 employees in Hong Kong are unhappy at work and almost half said they intended to change jobs in the next 12 months, according to a survey carried out by a job-seeking website. JobsDB.com found salary was the secondary factor to happiness in the workplace, behind relationships with colleagues and bosses. (bit.ly/1Jt9EiV)

- All retail banks in Hong Kong have set up hotlines for customers to verify the identities of their employees in a bid to battle a flood of phone scam cases. Banking chiefs said the hotlines would be available through the websites of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority and Hong Kong Association of Banks. (bit.ly/1hsRjuX)

- Shrugging off investors' concerns over its debt level, Evergrande Real Estate Group vowed to maintain a 30 percent annual growth rate in the coming years despite a dwindling housing demand. Chairman Hui Ka-yan said the company would sell off retail stores and car parks worth more than 100 billion yuan ($15.68 billion) to reduce debt. (bit.ly/1JI3Wgs)

THE STANDARD

- The Hong Kong Retail Management Association has warned of layoffs in the fourth quarter as retail sales continue to contract amid dwindling visitor numbers, with a worse-than-estimated 2.8 percent drop in July from a year ago. (bit.ly/1JI3q28)

- Hong Kong dollar deposits fell 0.8 percent in July from June to HK$5.30 trillion ($684 billion), the Hong Kong Monetary Authority said. Yuan deposits rose 0.11 percent to 994.1 billion yuan ($156 billion), marking the slowest growth in four months. George Leung, Hong Kong Association of Banks acting chairperson, said a weaker yuan could shrink the city's capital pool but also fuel yuan loan demand. (bit.ly/1FdPLuj)

- Macau's economy shrank by more than 26 percent in the second quarter, the sharpest contraction since 2011, as Beijing's anti-corruption drive continued to hammer its gaming business. The city saw its gross domestic product tumble by 26.4 percent in the three months to June, down for four straight quarters. Its economy shrank by 25.4 percent in the first half. (bit.ly/1LPnQbI)

HONG KONG ECONOMIC JOURNAL

- China Properties Investment Holdings Ltd's shares plunged 82 percent, wiping off HK$4.4 billion from marekt value, before trading was halted later on Monday morning. Mainland train maker CRRC Corporation said in the evening that it had terminated its plan to buy a stake in China Properties as certain condition set out in the subscription agreement had not been satisfied.

- Chinese shampoo maker BaWang International (Group) Holding said its loss attributable to owners of the company widened to 88.1 million yuan ($13.8 million) for six months ended in June, from 51.6 million yuan the same period last year.

HONG KONG ECONOMIC TIMES

- Shanghai Industrial Holdings Ltd posted a 29.5 percent fall in first-half profit at 1.37 billion yuan ($215 million). Its executive chairman Wang Wei said the mainland property market had showed sign of improvement in the past few months and he was confident that the company would achieve its annual sales target of 8 billion yuan.

 

Britain

The Times

Retail investors in the embattled Co-operative Bank will have a rare opportunity to buy and sell shares through a private share auction next week. Hundreds of private investors who are estimated to own between 5 percent and 15 percent and who remain shareholders after the 1.5 billion pounds ($2.30 billion)restructuring at the end of 2013 are being invited to take part in the auction by Asset Match.(http://thetim.es/1N5MzZD)

The 6.5 million customers of Royal Bank of Scotland, NatWest and Ulster Bank were faced with more banking troubles yesterday after yet another IT glitch hit the group. For an hour in the morning customers found that they were either unable to log on to online banking, or even if they could, they were not able to make payments or transfer any money to other accounts. (http://thetim.es/1N5MANf)

The Guardian

Pfizer, one of the world's largest pharmaceutical groups, has said it will resist demands from investors and transparency campaigners that it disclose results from all historical drug trials. (http://bit.ly/1N5Mjdk)

Employers who fail to pay the new "national living wage" face increased fines under a crackdown on non-compliance announced by British Prime Minister David Cameron. Cameron said the new pay policy would only work if it were "properly enforced" and that the government would be funding a new unit to crack down on firms thought to be flouting the law. (http://bit.ly/1N5MncX)

The Telegraph

The French economy minister has called for the appointment of a powerful new "Euro Commissioner" to head a single economic government for the eurozone. Emmanuel Macron said it was time to "re-found the EU" and called for full fiscal union. (http://bit.ly/1N5MHbA)

Sky News

OneWeb, the satellite venture whose investors include Virgin Group and Coca-Cola is preparing to raise up to $2.5 billion. OneWeb is to hold an investment bank beauty parade ahead of fundraising planned for next year. (http://bit.ly/1N5LWPM)

A "supergiant" natural gas field which could supply Egypt for "decades" has been discovered off Egypt's coast. Italian oil company ENI said the find was the largest in the Mediterranean Sea and could yet become one of the world's most significant, possibly holding up to 30 trillion cubic feet of gas. (http://bit.ly/1N5MrcG)