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Frontrunning: August 8

  • Tax Overhaul Effort Shaped by Debate Over Corporations (WSJ)
  • Funds target 'unknown' stocks as Wall Street cuts analyst jobs (Reuters)
  • GOP Plans Tax Compromise to Sidestep Democrats (BBG)
  • Few expect Trump's 15-percent corporate tax rate: Deloitte survey (Reuters)
  • Raid on Venezuelan Base Got Help From Active Officers (WSJ)
  • Hackers demand million in ransom for stolen HBO data (AP)
  • OPEC holds second day of compliance talks, to issue statement (Reuters)
  • Time Inc misses revenue estimates as advertising sales slip (Reuters)
  • Uber Chairman Says Travis Kalanick Won’t Return as CEO (WSJ)
  • China says willing to pay the price for new North Korea sanctions (Reuters)
  • Jacob Zuma’s Fate Hangs in Secret Parliament Vote (BBG)
  • Vanguard breaks ranks to pay for analyst research (FT)
  • ‘Gig Economy’ Companies Working Harder to Attract Employees (WSJ)
  • Amid Trump’s Immigration Crackdown, More Mexicans Get Visas to Work in U.S. (WSJ)
  • Tillerson in Thailand presses for more action on North Korea (Reuters)
  • Brexit Is Quietly Strangling Science (BBG)
  • China ride-hailing firm DiDi backs Uber rival Careem (Reuters)
  • China's Trade Surplus Widens for Fifth Month as Imports Moderate (BBG)
  • Mazda announces breakthrough in long-coveted engine technology (Reuters)
  • Envision to sell ambulance business to KKR in $2.4 billion deal (Reuters)
  • Nissan to sell its electric battery business to GSR Capital (Reuters)

Overnight Media Digest


- Tesla Inc said it plans to raise $1.5 billion in its first-ever sale of traditional bonds. The company said the funds would help push broader sales of its lower-price Model 3 sedan.

- Alphabet Inc's Google fired the employee who wrote an internal memo suggesting men are better suited for tech jobs than women, following an email from Google's chief executive, Sundar Pichai to the company's employees, saying that the memo writer violated company policy.

- Uber Technologies Inc won't be bringing co-founder Travis Kalanick back as chief executive, the company's chairman Garrett Camp told employees, in an attempt to quell reports the co-founder was attempting a comeback.

- United Technologies Corp made an initial offer of less than $140 a share to acquire Rockwell Collins Inc, but the two aerospace suppliers are still wrangling over the price of a takeover that would exceed $20 billion.

- Pershing Square Capital Management LP (IPO-PERS.L) said it was nominating its founder William Ackman and two others to the board of Automatic Data Processing Inc, backing off from its previous demand of five seats on the 10-person board.



Rising food costs helped British retail sales in July, with consumers cutting back on non-food spending as confidence in the economic outlook waned, according to the British Retail Consortium.

The UK government is considering proposals that would fine operators of essential UK services that succumb to cyber attacks 17 million pounds ($22.16 million) if they have poor security.

Members of the European Parliament are preparing to bolster EU plans to police London's euro clearing business after Brexit, raising the risk that Britain might lose the lucrative activity.

Hedge fund Pershing Square proposed three nominees, including its Chief Executive William Ackman, to serve on the board of Automatic Data Processing Inc.



- The Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco is investigating Wells Fargo & Co for not refunding car buyers who bought special insurance and repaid their loans early.

- Alphabet Inc's Google on Monday fired a software engineer who wrote an internal memo that questioned the company's diversity efforts. The employee, who confirmed his firing, argued in the memo that the gender gap among high-tech employees was due in part to biological differences.

- Programmers are still embarking on new initial coin offerings at a torrid pace even after the Securities and Exchange Commission issued its first warning late last month for entrepreneurs who have been raising money by creating and selling their own virtual currencies.

- Cable network FX has struck a deal with Comcast Corp to offer a commercial-free experience for its currently airing shows, and some older ones, through a service, called FX+, that will start in September.




** Trading in the shares of Great Canadian Gaming Corp was halted by regulators last week because of "pending news," ahead of a provincial announcement about who will run gambling in the Greater Toronto Area. The Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp is expected to select a business within days to take over operations at its casino and thousands of slot machines in the GTA for the next two decades.

** A number of executives at Eight Capital Corp have left the independent brokerage firm, weeks after it was involved in a controversial, and unsuccessful, financing deal for a new marijuana company. The departures, which took place over the past month, included former chief executive officer Mark Attanasio and Donato Sferra, who was managing director of investment banking, according to people familiar with the situation.

** Saudi Arabia's use of combat machines against its Shia population goes to the heart of the controversy over whether the Trudeau government is violating Canada's weapons export-control rules. The Trudeau government has reached out to Saudi Arabia and Western allies to register unease over Riyadh's apparent use of Canadian armored vehicles against its own citizens, Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland


** Final hearings on the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline began on Monday with testy exchanges between a lawyer for Nebraska landowners who oppose the project and a company executive and a local economist whose studies tout the benefits of the venture.

** Saskatchewan premier Brad Wall said in an interview that he is worried the environmental rules Ottawa is set to introduce later this year will strain national unity in the resource-dependent West.



The Times

The booming jobs market shows no signs of abating, according to figures from recruitment agencies that show the fastest rise in jobs placements for more than two years.

Investors in Paddy Power Betfair Plc were nursing heavy losses yesterday after the FTSE 100 gambling operator surprised the market by announcing the resignation of its chief executive.

The Guardian

Companies will no longer be able to pay employees their salaries in gold bullion in the first use of a new law designed to combat "morally repugnant" tax avoidance schemes.

Hopes of a breakthrough for householders trapped in the leasehold scandal are rising after a major developer agreed to buy back some freeholds and axe ground rent clauses.

The Telegraph

Global Blue, the tax refund payment firm, is paving the way for a 4-billion-euro ($4.72 billion) flotation at the turn of the year, possibly in London.

The government has given the green light to a major offshore wind farm which could prove to be the cheapest yet in UK waters.

Sky News

An investment vehicle set up by two scions of the billionaire Wal-Mart Stores Inc dynasty will this week emerge as the victor of a 200-million-pound ($260.70 million)race to buy Rapha, the British maker of upmarket cycling gear.

Video-streaming business Netflix Inc has announced its first acquisition -- Millarworld, a Scottish comic book company.