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Frontrunning: August 14

  • Korea tensions ease slightly as U.S. officials play down war risks (Reuters)
  • Pence Plays Down Trump Threat on Venezuela (WSJ)
  • Trump Pressed to Reject White Nationalist Groups (WSJ)
  • White House Says Trump Abhors Neo-Nazis (BBG)
  • Charlottesville, and the World, Take Stock of Violent Episode (NYT)
  • Car Attack Suspect Had Shown Troubling Behavior (NYT)
  • U.S. Default? Unlikely, But Bond Traders Are Taking No Chances (BBG)
  • Voters sense betrayal in Britain's Brexit heartlands (Reuters)
  • What the Google Controversy Misses: The Business Case for Diversity (WSJ)
  • Chinese state newspaper says Trump trade probe will 'poison' relations (Reuters)
  • Chinese try to buy Fiat Chrysler (Automotive News)
  • China steel output hits record in July at 74 million tonnes (Reuters)
  • Now Advising China’s State Firms: The Communist Party (WSJ)
  • Vladimir's Venezuela - Leveraging loans to Caracas, Moscow snaps up oil assets (Reuters)
  • HBO Hackers Leak Episodes From Upcoming Season of 'Curb' (AP)
  • Trump Will Get His Tax Cuts, Vast Majority of Economists Say (BBG)
  • U.S. tax change proposals anger builders, realtors, charities (Reuters)
  • London’s Big Ben to Fall Silent Next Week for Four Years (BBG)
  • Tudor and Brevan Howard abandon Mifid (FT)
  • Hawking TVs on Tinder Helps Fuel 2000% Rally for Brazil Retailer (BBG)
  • Trump Chips Away at Postcrisis Wall Street Rules (WSJ)
  • French food group Danone's share rise after bid speculation report (Reuters)
  • How a Conservative TV Giant Is Ridding Itself of Regulation (NYT)
  • The Investment Bank Tipping Gold to Hit $1,400 (BBG)
  • Businesses re-open in Kenyan capital despite opposition strike call over election (Reuters)
  •  Suspected Islamist militants kill 18 in attack on Burkina Faso restaurant (Reuters)

Overnight Media Digest


- Netflix Inc has recruited prolific television producer Shonda Rhimes, the creator of ABC hits such as Scandal and Grey's Anatomy, the clearest sign yet of an arms race for talent between new and old entertainment industry giants.

- U.S. President Donald Trump, in the wake of deadly weekend violence at a white-supremacy rally in Virginia, is facing pressure to break decisively with such nationalist groups that largely backed his campaign and presidency.

- Months before Snapchat parent Snap Inc publicly disclosed slowing user growth, rival Facebook Inc already knew, due to information from a data-security app owned by the social-media company. Data from Onavo's app has been crucial to helping Facebook track rivals and scope out new product categories.

- Arriving in Asia, the Pentagon's top general says the focus remains on finding a diplomatic solution to the North Korea missile crisis, even as the military works up its own options.

- Alibaba Group Holding Ltd predicts its revenue will increase almost 50 percent this fiscal year on the backs of China's swelling ranks of middle-class consumers. Its shares listed on the New York Stock Exchange have risen 80 percent since the beginning of the year.

- James Fields Jr, the 20-year-old man arrested and charged for driving a Dodge Challenger into a crowd of demonstrators in Charlottesville on Saturday and killing a 32-year-old woman, was remembered as a quiet student by a school principal and a fellow classmate, but a former teacher said he also espoused white-supremacist views.



** Technology firm Telit Communications Plc has cut its ties with chief executive, Oozi Cats, after investigations regarding his alleged links to a U.S. fugitive by the name of Uzi Katz.

** Jean-Claude Juncker, European Commission president, is set to announce measures in a speech in September which will call for more rigorous screening of foreign takeovers of European companies.

** More than half of employers in UK plan to raise wages by just 1 percent over the next year. A survey of 1,139 employers by the CIPD, the professional body for HR managers, published on Monday discovered that employers plan to expand their workforces during the third quarter of 2017 but do not expect employment growth to put significant upward pressure on wages.



- Ebay Inc founder Pierre Omidyar wants to build a dairy farm on the island of Kauai, joining many other tech billionaires who have established a presence in Hawaii, which is only a five-hour flight from Silicon Valley.

- Uber Technologies Inc's board has voted to move forward on proposals by two investment groups to buy shares in the ride-hailing service and is considering a third offer, with any final decision set to affect who gains the upper hand at the company.

- The Trump administration is giving health insurance companies more time to calculate price increases for 2018 because of uncertainty caused by the president's threat to cut off crucial subsidies paid to insurers on behalf of millions of low-income people.

- At OpenAI, the artificial intelligence lab founded by Tesla Inc's chief executive, Elon Musk, machines are teaching themselves to behave like humans. But sometimes, this goes wrong.




Canadian Blood Services is seeking C$855 million ($673 million) over seven years to significantly boost the amount of plasma it collects from unpaid donors to make medications, according to a confidential document that summarizes the full cost of the effort.

Ontario's Liberal government is looking at imports from Quebec to provide additional sources of low-cost, clean electricity in order to meet ambitious plans to electrify transportation and space heating in buildings while reducing the grid's reliance on natural-gas generation.

Frustration and costs are mounting for natural gas producers over frequent outages on TransCanada Corp's Alberta pipeline network that have limited shipments and put heavy pressure on prices for the fuel.

As it sells ad airtime for next year's Super Bowl, Bell Media Inc is setting prices on the assumption it will once again be able to swap in the CTV television feed – and Canadian ads – over the U.S. big game broadcast in Canada.


A Liberal senator, Percy Downe, is concerned that senior military officers are receiving a disproportionate number of public service jobs available to injured Canadian Forces members and he wants a new accounting of how those positions are being distributed.



The Times

- The number of air passengers arrested for drunken misbehaviour on flights and in airports has risen by 50 percent in the past year, an investigation has found. Two senior peers have pressed UK government to place the aviation industry under the same strict licensing laws as pubs and nightclubs.

- One in six care home companies is in danger of insolvency, according to a report from an accountancy firm Moore Stephens. About 420,000 people over the age of 65 are being looked after in Britain's 11,000 residential care homes, including 220,000 of the most vulnerable patients, who are in 4,700 nursing homes.

The Guardian

- Up to 13,000 landlords in just one London borough have been identified as failing to declare their rental income, prompting estimates that unpaid tax in the capital is costing the public purse nearly 200 million pounds ($260.18 million).

- British retirees are rushing to settle in European countries such as Spain, Portugal and France before the Brexit deadline, according to financial advisers, believing that such a move will become significantly more difficult in the future.

The Telegraph

- Companies including NuScale, Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc , and Westinghouse have been summoned by the Government for crunch talks on plans to meet Britain's energy demands with new small reactor technology, amid mounting fears over delays and Whitehall paralysis. They have been asked to present their plans in meetings over the next few weeks.

- Liquidators for BHS have begun legal action against Sir Philip Green's Arcadia retail empire. Papers have been filed in the High Court by lawyers representing SHB Realisations, the holding company for BHS, which is now in the hands of restructuring firm FRP Advisory.

Sky News

- Rocket Internet SE and Kinnevik AB, two of Europe's leading backers of internet start-ups, will this week announce the sale of Glossybox, a beauty products subscription service to The Hut Group.

- Brexit position papers to be released this week risk fuelling tension between the British and Irish governments. Ireland's Prime Minister, Leo Varadkar, had urged Theresa May to remain in the customs union to avoid border checks.

The Independent

- British Prime Minister Theresa May is accused of trying to break parliamentary rules in order to ram through controversial law changes after Brexit. The Conservatives are demanding to pack a crucial decision-making committee with their own MPs, despite losing their Commons majority at the election.

- British Prime Minister Theresa May has condemned the violence which erupted in Virginia between white-supremacist groups and counter-protesters, leaving three people dead. In a tweet from the Prime Minister's official Twitter account, May said: "Our thoughts and prayers are with #Charlottesville. The UK stands with the US against racism, hatred and violence."