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Frontrunning: August 19

  • $1 trillion in Emerging Market outflows in the past 13 months (FT)
  • German lawmakers back third Greek bailout (Reuters)
  • Dutch government faces test in "junkie" Greece debate (Reuters)
  • China c.bank offers selected banks medium term lending facility (Reuters)
  • Another "expert network" busted: Promontory settles over StanChart probe (FT)
  • Angola to Ship Most Crude in Four Years to Meet Asian Demand (BBG)
  • Hackers dump data online from cheating website Ashley Madison (Reuters)
  • Yuan’s Devaluation Brings Losses for Some (WSJ)
  • Grad-School Loan Binge Fans Debt Worries (WSJ)
  • How the Worst Performing Oil Companies Are Making More Than Exxon (BBG)
  • Police Snap Up Cheap Cellphone Trackers (WSJ)
  • Market forces cut Glencore down to size (FT)
  • One of the Most Successful Trading Strategies This Year May Be Coming to an End (BBG)
  • Clinton Is Defiant as Email Cases Loom (WSJ)
  • Lehman Survivor Wants to Build a $12 Billion Solar Empire(BBG)
  • Why Yellen Doesn’t Need to Worry About Spooking U.S. Consumers (BBG)

 

Overnight Media Digest

WSJ

- The sudden devaluation of the yuan is proving cataclysmic for investors who watched the currency climb for a decade and made bets that depended on it holding stead. (http://on.wsj.com/1gVQY3s)

- U.S. airlines are producing their biggest profits ever. But instead of clear skies, they are encountering problems that their recent prosperity, in some cases, is making worse. (http://on.wsj.com/1gVR0Za)

- Hillary Clinton again dismissed criticism of her use of a private email server as politically minded attacks, as a federal judge prepares for a hearing amid a host of lawsuits over her communications while she was secretary of state. (http://on.wsj.com/1gVRbE2)

- Local law-enforcement agencies in the United States are buying cellphone-tracking devices that are cheaper and smaller than earlier systems, partly because they might not require court orders. (http://on.wsj.com/1gVRkam)

- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the first pill designed to boost sexual desire in women, but studies show some serious side effects, including drowsiness, fainting and nausea. (http://on.wsj.com/1gVRmPI)

- Vaio Corp plans to start selling laptops at Microsoft Corp retail stores in the United States in October, Chief Executive Yoshimi Ota said in an interview. The company also plans a move into Brazil, with Positivo Informatica, a Brazilian computer manufacturer, making and distributing PCs designed by the Japanese company. (http://on.wsj.com/1J2sz6e)

- The doubling of student debt since the recession, to $1.19 trillion, has stoked a national discussion over how to rein in college costs and debt and is becoming a major issue in the 2016 presidential race. Little noted in the outcry is the disproportionate role played by postgraduate borrowers, who now account for roughly 40 percent of all student debt but represent just 14 percent of students in higher education. (http://on.wsj.com/1hLGhRL)

- Fund manager Mario Gabelli topped Wall Street CEO pay in 2014 staying true to Gamco's model of choosing investments amid the rise of passively managed funds.(http://on.wsj.com/1hLGuo6)

 

FT

Consulting firm Promontory Financial Group has agreed to pay $15 million to New York's top banking regulator and refrain from new consulting projects with state-regulated banks for six months after being accused of whitewashing a report about sanctions compliance at Standard Chartered Plc. The company admitted that "in certain instances" it failed to meet regulatory requirements.

Britain offered shale gas exploration licences for the first time in seven years on Tuesday, awarding 27 new blocks covering 2,700 square kilometres to oil and gas companies as a part of the government's "long-term plan".

German Chancellor Angela Merkel faced a rebellion in her own party ranks against the latest 86 billion euro ($94.82 billion) Greece rescue package, as the parliament prepared to vote on Wednesday on the bailout. On Tuesday, Christian Democrats and Christian Social Union members of Parliament estimated about 80 out of 311 members would vote against the plan.

ScottishPower, which is owned by Iberdrola SA, said on Tuesday it will close its Longannet Power Station at the end of March 2016, a move that highlights the decline of coal plants in the United Kingdom. The utility said it would also stop development of a gas turbine plant at Cockenzie near Edinburgh.

 

NYT

- The first prescription drug - Addyi from Sprout Pharmaceuticals - to enhance women's sexual drive won regulatory approval on Tuesday, clinching a victory for a lobbying campaign that had accused the U.S. Food and Drug Administration of gender bias for ignoring the sexual needs of women. (http://nyti.ms/1gVVwXO)

- The Obama administration on Tuesday proposed the first federal regulations requiring the nation's oil and gas industry to cut emissions of methane as part of an expanding and increasingly aggressive effort to combat climate change. (http://nyti.ms/1hLDS9X)

- Wal-Mart Stores Inc cut its annual profit forecast on Tuesday, saying the costs of raising wages for a half-million workers were weighing down its bottom line. (http://nyti.ms/1gW350A)

- Hackers claim to have made good on their threat to release data they stole in a breach last month of the company behind Ashley Madison, the popular online dating website aimed at people hoping to cheat on their spouses. (http://nyti.ms/1Jhhyzc)

 

China

CHINA SECURITIES JOURNAL

- China will encourage and support the development of the Internet insurance market, said Xiang Junbo, president of the China Insurance Regulatory Commission.

SECURITIES TIMES

- Net profits of 36 listed property companies stood at 98.7 billion yuan in the first half of this year while their average net margin was 9.1 percent, the first-ever drop to below 10 percent, according to a report by Centaline Property.

- China's property market will continue de-stocking and there is little potential for a sharp rise in housing prices, said Tan Huajie, chairman secretary of China Vanke.

 

Britain

The Times

* Dozens of new areas of northern England have been thrown open to fracking after the government awarded oil and gas licenses. Twenty-seven exploration licenses, each covering 100 square kilometres, have been awarded in the latest tranche. (http://thetim.es/1Pya7o5)

* Goldman Sachs will be able to ask the Bank of England for funding in a crisis after the American firm won approval to access the UK central bank's liquidity scheme as an emergency back-stop. (http://thetim.es/1WD7M00)

The Guardian

* The Chief Executive of Nationwide has criticised changes to the banking levy announced in the budget, saying that the scale-back will have a "disproportionate effect" on smaller lenders and would cost the customer-owned group 300 million pounds ($469.68 million) over five years. (http://bit.ly/1PjbPJn)

* Britain's inflation rate ticked higher last month, heating up the debate over when Bank of England policymakers will start raising interest rates. (http://bit.ly/1PjpY9o)

The Telegraph

* Wren House Infrastructure Management, a part of an investment vehicle owned by the Kuwait Investment Authority, is part of a consortium that is considering a bid for London City Airport, which has been valued at 2 billion pounds. (http://bit.ly/1TRG63b)

* Harris Associates has raised its stake in FTSE 100 mining giant Glencore Plc on the eve of results that are expected to show sharply lower profits as a result of tumbling commodity prices. The activist investor is now the fourth-largest shareholder with a 4.5 percent stake in the shares valued at 1 billion pounds at current prices. (http://bit.ly/1PkRcwu)

Sky News

* Rail fares have risen almost three times faster than wages over the past five years, a new report says. According to the study, season tickets and other regulated fares have gone up by 25 percent since 2010 - compared to a 9 percent increase in average pay. (http://bit.ly/1gU0aFM)

* Up to two million people who were mis-sold credit card insurance can now apply for compensation of up to 270 pounds per card. Banks such as Barclays Plc, HSBC Holdings Plc and Santander have agreed to contact customers after they were sold insurance they did not need. (http://bit.ly/1E1CzOd)

The Independent

* The status of Britain as a haven for foreign investors looking for decent returns in housing in the wake of the economic crisis may be coming to an end and London property now represents a "risky" buy. (http://ind.pn/1NDwnf0)

* Quindell Plc attempted to put an era of scandal behind it as the business ousted its City adviser and appointed a new chief executive. The new chief executive is Indro Mukerjee, the non-executive chairman of the tech group FlexEnable. (http://ind.pn/1E1CB8M)