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Frontrunning: October 30

  • World stocks on course for best month in four years (Reuters)
  • Global Stocks Up Amid Stimulus Hopes (WSJ)
  • BOJ Refrains From Adding Stimulus Even as Inflation, Growth Wane (BBG)
  • U.S. Avoids Debt Default as Congress Passes Fiscal Plan (BBG)
  • China naval chief says minor incident could spark war in South China Sea (Reuters)
  • Exclusive Club: No High-Frequency Traders Allowed at Luminex (WSJ)
  • Valeant's Goldman Connection: A CFO Schooled on Wall Street (BBG)
  • Valeant is now facing federal investigations & sharp criticism in Congress and from presidential candidates (NYT)
  • As China’s Stock Market Crashed, These Hedge Funds Rose 70% (BBG)
  • Young couples mostly lukewarm as China ends one-child policy (Reuters)
  • China child policy change doesn't herald surge in infant food demand (Reuters)
  • Pimco Added Treasuries to Protect Against Increasing Volatility (BBG)
  • U.S. Backs Off Hard Line on Syrian President’s Future (WSJ)
  • Oil Producers Curb Megaproject Ambitions to Focus on U.S. Shale (BBG)
  • Mutual Funds Flail at Valuing Hot Startups Like Uber (WSJ)
  • RBS Investment Bank's Loss Almost Doubles Amid Overhaul (BBG)
  • AIG Mortgage Spinoff, Sale on the Table (WSJ)
  • Germany says Greece must fully comply with bailout programme (Reuters)
  • Europe's Last Dictator Has Become the Darling of the Bond Market (BBG)
  • Baidu Announces $2 Billion Share Buyback After Profit Beats (BBG)

 

Overnight Media Digest

WSJ

- CVS Health Corp, Express Scripts Holding Co and UnitedHealth Group, the three largest pharmacy-benefit managers in the United States, said they are ceasing work with a pharmacy used by Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, dealing another blow to Valeant.(http://on.wsj.com/1kfdYfG)

- American International Group Inc directors are discussing a spinoff of the firm's small mortgage-insurance business as the conglomerate faces new shareholder pressure to break apart, according to people familiar with the situation. (http://on.wsj.com/1KITSzM)

- The distribution rights to one of the movie industry's highest profile franchises-the James Bond movies-are about to be up for grabs, and several studios are planning to pursue those rights. (http://on.wsj.com/1Mlp7lH)

- Alphabet Inc's Google plans to fold its Chrome operating system for personal computers into its Android mobile-operating system, a sign of the growing dominance of mobile computing. (http://on.wsj.com/1MwRhjR)

- Visa Inc is in talks to buy Visa Europe for about $22 billion in a deal that would unite its global operations.(http://on.wsj.com/1RCX0Tg)

 

FT

Deutsche Bank AG is set to cut about 9 percent of its workforce, with 4,000 of the job losses in Germany, as part of a strategic overhaul.

Telecoms tycoon Xavier Niel has become the second-largest shareholder in Telecom Italia behind Vincent Bollore's Vivendi, after Italy's stock market regulator confirmed that Niel now holds the equivalent of an 11.2 percent voting stake in Telecom Italia.

Royal Dutch Shell Plc, which reported its largest net loss in at least 16 years, said on Thursday that it is cutting another 1,000 jobs after taking a $8 billion hit from the plunge in crude oil prices.

 

NYT

- The nation's three largest drug benefit managers said on Thursday that they would cease doing business with a mysterious pharmacy that has been bolstering sales of products made by Valeant Pharmaceuticals International. Express Scripts Holding Co, CVS Health Corp and OptumRx said they would stop paying for drugs dispensed by the pharmacy, Philidor Rx Services.(http://nyti.ms/1XD7S7r)

- Both Pfizer Inc and Allergan PLC, which makes Botox and has its tax domicile in Ireland, confirmed on Thursday that they were in friendly talks to combine, a move that would create a pharmaceutical behemoth. With the market value of the smaller Allergan at nearly $120 billion, it would be the biggest merger in a banner year for deal making and the biggest takeover ever in health care.(http://nyti.ms/1WmoEFe)

- Deutsche Bank AG said on Thursday that it planned to cut as many as 35,000 jobs through internal cuts and the sale of businesses over the next two years as part of an overhaul by John Cryan, the bank's new co-chief executive, to simplify the lender and improve its returns. (http://nyti.ms/1MwSt6M)

- After an investigation by federal regulators, Honda Motor Co said on Thursday that it would recall more than 300,000 2008-9 Accords because the side airbags could deploy without the vehicle being in a crash. Honda said it was aware of 19 minor injuries. (http://nyti.ms/1iohhjn)

- A former top prosecutor in New York City has been appointed the federal monitor for General Motors Co after its agreement last month to pay $900 million to end a United States criminal investigation over a lethal defect in its vehicle ignition switches. The appointee, Bart Schwartz, formerly chief of the criminal division in the United States attorney's office in Manhattan, will review policies and practices at GM, including the adequacy of the automaker's procedures for addressing defects. (http://nyti.ms/1GNWrFE)

 

Canada

THE GLOBE AND MAIL

** Royal Dutch Shell Plc has extended an olive branch to Alberta Premier Rachel Notley after releasing news about the company's plans to cancel its Carmon Creek project, casting a pall on the new provincial budget unveiled at the same time. (http://bit.ly/20fn9Oa)

** Home prices in most major housing markets in the country are overvalued, with Toronto and some Western cities facing a high risk of a correction, Canada's federal housing agency warned. (http://bit.ly/1P1dSpc)

** Alberta lost 63,500 jobs in the first eight months of this year, according to government data, showing the toll weak oil prices have had on the western province. The losses were the largest since the global economic crisis when the province shed 72,500 jobs over the same period in 2009. (http://bit.ly/1P9pkxm)

NATIONAL POST

** Bank of Nova Scotia offered its customers an American Express card, but the bank is not part of Apple Inc's plans to roll out Apple Pay in Canada through the American credit card company. (http://bit.ly/1NcUVOE)

** Against a backdrop of considerable political intrigue in Ontario, Hydro One, the former provincially owned transmission and distribution company, priced its initial public offering. The entity will sell a minimum of 81.1 million shares at C$20.50. (http://bit.ly/1RDnnIL)

** Stephen Harper will be remembered as an average or better prime minister by most Canadians, significantly more than the 31.9 percent who voted for the Conservative Party in the last election, according to a new poll released Friday. (http://bit.ly/1kg34pL) (

 

China

SECURITIES TIMES

- The Shenzhen Stock Exchange said it would create different categories for ChiNext listed companies according to their profitability.

21ST CENTURY BUSINESS HERALD

- Chinese buyers invested a total of $52 billion in overseas real estate, according to international real estate website Juwai.com, with Europe a favourite place to buy among Chinese investors.

SHANGHAI SECURITIES NEWS

- Real estate company Hainan Haide Industry Co Ltd plans to invest 4.8 billion yuan ($756 million) in a new bad debt asset management company in a change of strategy.

CHINA BUSINESS NEWS

- Of the 17 China-listed white wine companies, 16 have reported their third-quarter financials. Of those that have reported, 15 have returned to profit over the January to September period, according to calculations from financial data provider iFinD.

 

Britain

The Times

The population of the United Kingdom will rise by almost 10 million over the next quarter of a century, according to official figures published today by the Office for National Statistics. (http://thetim.es/1Rh5aRo)

Royal Dutch Shell Plc slashed its oil price forecast and prepared for a prolonged industry recession as it unveiled a $7.4 billion quarterly loss, the biggest in the company's history. (http://thetim.es/1GzD0R9)

The Guardian

Volkswagen AG must consider offering compensation to motorists whose Volkswagen vehicle has lost some of its resale value as a result of the diesel emissions scandal, the transport secretary has said. (http://bit.ly/1KIYMwL)

Barclays Plc is embroiled in yet another scandal after admitting it expects to pay 290 million stg to compensate customers for the rates they were charged on currency deals. (http://bit.ly/1PXBKsY)

The Telegraph

Britain's credit rating could be slashed below Austria and Finland's if it leaves the European Union, Standard & Poor's has warned. (http://bit.ly/1SctXXp)

Defence firm BAE Systems Plc is unlikely to sell more Typhoon jets to Saudi Arabia because of political tensions with the UK, according to Credit Suisse. (http://bit.ly/1RCY0qg)

Sky News

Regulators could order the sale of billions of pounds-worth of mobile spectrum as a condition of approving the merger of O2 and Three to create the UK's biggest mobile phone group. (http://bit.ly/1WkhEOF)

Schroders Plc, which has 310 billion stg of assets under management, wrote to the chairs of the 350 largest listed companies this week to ask them to consider abandoning the practise of quarterly reporting. (http://bit.ly/1PT3bVB)

The Independent

Supporters of withdrawal from the European Union suffered a major set-back as a senior American official, Michael Froman, warned that the move would make it more expensive for British firms to export to the United States. (http://ind.pn/1inPXSh)