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Drill, China, drill: State majors step on the gas after Xi calls…

SINGAPORE/BEIJING ( ) – China’s state energy giants are set to raise spending on domestic drilling this year to the highest levels since 2016, focusing on adding natural gas reserves in a concerted drive to boost local supplies.

Responding to President Xi Jinping’s call last August to boost domestic energy security, China’s trio of oil majors – PetroChina, Sinopec Corp and CNOOC Ltd – are adding thousands of wells at oil basins in the remote deserts of the northwest region of Xinjiang, shale rocks in southwest Sichuan province and deepwater fields of the South China Sea.

Firms are showing greater risk appetite, expanding investments faster in exploration than production, emboldened by Beijing’s political push and oil near $60 a barrel, said state oil executives and analysts at consultancy Wood Mackenzie.

“We shall carry through resolutely the State Council’s call on stepping up domestic exploration and development and launch an offensive war,” PetroChina Chairman Wang Yilin was cited as saying in an inhouse newspaper in December.

Offshore specialist CNOOC Ltd said last week it was confident of achieving its spending target this year, the highest since 2014. It pledged to spend twice as much this year in domestic exploratory drilling as in 2016.

“With oil prices at $50, $60 and $70…we’re making decent profits,” Yuan Guangyu, CNOOC’s Chief Executive Officer, said last week.

CNPC, Asia’s largest oil and gas producer and parent of PetroChina, is boosting risk exploration investment five-fold to 5 billion yuan ($741 million) this year from 1 billion yuan last year.

But with oil reservoirs maturing and new discoveries tending to be smaller and more costly, even more drilling is unlikely to reverse China’s declining oil outlook, analysts say.

China, set to remain the world’s top oil buyer for years to come, is forecast to slip to the 10th largest global oil producer in 2020, down from No.5 for most of last decade, said Wood Mackenzie.

“China will likely continue on the same path as it has in recent years – an overwhelming focus on new gas prod,上海夜网邀请码Jace,uction, leading to continued decline in its oil output,” said Angus Rodger, research director of Asia-Pacific upstream at Wood Mackenzie.

GRAPHIC: China’s top-3 oilmajors – tmsnrt.rs/2HCX2As

PETROCHINA LEADS PUSH

With Beijing pushing to reduce energy import dependence and hit environmental targets, gas output is forecast by analysts to rise at 6-8 percent a year through 2020.

China, the world’s No.3 gas consumer, overtook Japan as the world’s top gas importer in October.

Related CoverageFactbox: China’s oil majors tap new discoveries as they step up drilling

PetroChina, which produces some 70 percent of the country’s gas output, will lead the drive, adding thousands of wells in southwestern Sichu上海夜生活论坛an, northern Ordos and northwest Tarim basin, CNPC says on its website.

The major is also ramping up shale development in Sichuan, seeking to catch up with Sinopec Corp which has ,上海高端夜生活在那里Fabiana,pioneered China’s nascent shale push. Despite almost a decade of drilling, shale makes up just 6 percent of China’s total gas output because of complex geology and high costs of development.

PetroChina raised its shale gas output 40 percent last year to 4.3 billion cubic meters, while Sinopec’s production was largely flat at 6 bcm.

“Controlling the largest and best acreage, CNPC has been ramping up aggressively capital and human resource deployment over the past 3-4 months in Sichuan shale,” said Woodmac analyst Max Petrov who tracks Chinese majors’ investment.

Sinopec declined comment. CNPC did not respond to ’ request for comment.

DEEPWATER

Beyond 2020, deepwater discoveries in the South China Sea, such as Linghui 17-2, some 150km (90 miles) off China’s southernmost province of Hainan, will lend growth to China’s gas portfolio.

With estimated proven recoverable reserves of 2.5 trillion cubic feet, Lingshui is CNOOC’s single-largest fully owned deepwater gas discovery. BG Group walked away with little success after exploratory drilling at the nearby Lingshui 22-1-1 well in 2010.

Aiming to add 50 percent to gas reserves by 2025, CNOOC is expected to step up drilling in the deepwater acreage of the Pearl River Mouth basin and expand earlier major discoveries including Yacheng and Dongfang, both near Hainan province.

“Natural gas is becoming increasingly popular under the government’s green push. And its relatively less risky than oil under long-term off-take deals,” said a state oil executive.

Companies, however, will hold off drilling in disputed territorial waters of the South China Sea due to technological challenges and the lack of experienced global partners willing to risk exploring those areas, analysts said.

Beijing claims about 90 percent of the South China Sea, whose estimated energy potential varies widely, although geologists believe it holds more gas than oil. Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan also claim parts of the key waterway.

SHORT RESERVE LIFE

Sinopec, traditionally a refiner rather than a driller, has the smallest resource base and may lag its peers, analysts say.

Sinopec’s proven oil reserves by end-2017 could last less than six years of production, versus CNOOC’,上海凤楼夜网Balthazar,s 10 years, while Sinopec’s gas reserve life of 8 years is dwarfed by PetroChina’s 24 years, according to calculations based on company filings.

Sinopec is expected to boost spending this year, including in developing its second shale gas target, Weirong block, in Sichuan. But the momentum of making new finds is waning, said company officials.

“Sinopec is well aware of its problems, but the will to change that seems to have a bottleneck at the top as the company sees itself more of a downstream, petrochemical player,” said Woodmac’s Petrov.

Detained ex-Nissan chairman Ghosn offers stock, passports for bail

( ) – Ousted Nissan Motor Co (7201.T) chairman Carlos Ghosn has offered to post stock he owns in the automaker as collateral, surrender his passports and submit to electronic tracking as part of a renewed effort to persuade a Tokyo court to grant him bail while he awaits trial on charges of financial misconduct, a spokeswoman for the car executive said.

Ghosn, imprisoned since his arrest on Nov. 19, has asked a Tokyo District Court for the second time to grant him bail after a request last week was denied. A hearing is scheduled for Monday evening in Tokyo.

He is willing to offer a higher bail am上海夜生活ount to secure his release and remain in a Tokyo apartment his family has leased, the spokeswoman said, without specifying the bail amount.

“I remain imprisoned in the detention center, 64 days after I was arrested, with no release in sight,” Ghosn said in a statement on Sunday. “As the Court considers my bail application, I want to emphasize that I will reside in Japan and respect any and all bail conditions the Court concludes are warranted.”

Ghosn has denied three Japanese charges of financial misconduct, including understating his salary for eight years and temporarily transferring personal financial losses to Nissan’s books.

The Tokyo court last week denied his bail application, citing concerns that he was a flight risk, which the once-feted executive disputes.

Ghosn had planned to make his way to France if released and return to Japan for trial, but now intends to stay put, according to a person familiar with the matter.

“I will attend my trial not only because I am legally obligated to do so, but because I am eager to finally have the opportunity to defend myself,” Ghosn said in the statement. “I am not guilty of the charges against me and I look forward to defending my reputation in the courtroom. Nothing is more important to me or to my family.”

The Japanese government could not be reached immediately for comment. The To,上海夜生活桑拿会所Mabel,kyo Public Prosecutors Office said it was not in a position to comment.

A Nissan spokesman declined to comment on Japanese judicial proceedings. It has said the company’s internal investigation had uncovered “s,上海仙霞路夜生活Idaleen,ubstantial and convincing evidence of misconduct” involving Ghosn and that the probe is ongoing and broadening.

Ghosn’s lawyer, Motonari Otsuru, expects his client to be held until trial, which he said could begin in about six months.

If granted bail, Ghosn said he would remain in a Tokyo apartment and wear a tracking device to monitor his whereabouts, the spokeswoman said. Ghosn would also pay for private security guards approved by local authorities to watch him, report daily to Japanese prosecutors and refrain from speaking to individuals who might be witnesses in his case, the spokeswoman said.

Related CoverageNissan’s Ghosn offers to wear electronic ankle tag for bail

Ghosn has not spoken to his family since being detained, the spokeswoman said.

Ghosn spearheaded Nissan’s turnaround two decades ago, and his arrest has jolted the auto industry, while muddying the outlook for Nissan’s three-way alliance with France’s Renault SA (RENA.PA) and Mitsubishi Motors C,上海高端夜生活在那里Fabi,orp (7211.T).

Renault, which dominates the partnership through its 43.4 percent stake in Nissan, is expected to meet within days to consider potential candidates to replace Ghosn as chief executive officer and chairman.

Wall Street advances as industrials jump on trade hopes

NEW YORK ( ) – U.S. stocks advanced on Thursday as hopes of a resolution to the trade dispute between the United States and China boosted industrial shares and lifted investor sentiment.

Stocks spiked higher in afternoon trading after the Wall Street Journal reported that U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin discussed lifting some or all tariffs imposed on Chinese imports and suggested offering a tariff rollback during trade discussions scheduled for Jan. 30.

S&P 500 industrial stocks .SPLRCI, which have been sensitive to trade developments, rose 1.7 percent. They held most of their gains even as U.S. stocks pulled back from session highs after a Treasury spokesman said that Mnuchin had not made any such recommendations.

“The market reaction is really telling,” said Michael Antonelli, managing director of institutional sales trading at Robert W. Baird in Milwaukee. “It shows how badly people want the trade war to end.”

Earlier, industrial stocks had moved higher as shares of defense contractors rose after President Donald Trump unveiled a new U.S. missile defense strategy. Shares of Northrop Grumman Corp (NOC.N) advanced 3.3 percent, and shares of Lockheed Martin Corp (LMT.N) gained 2.,上海新夜网龙凤Radcliff,4 percent.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI rose 162.94 points, or 0.67 percent, to 24,370.1, the S&P 500 上海夜生活网.SPX gained 19.86 points, or 0.76 percent, to 2,635.96 and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC added 49.77 points, or 0.71 percent, to 7,084.46.

With Thursday’s gains, the benchmark S&P 500 index closed above its 50-day moving average for the first time since Dec. 3. The S&P 500 is 10.1 percent away from its Sept. 20 record close after having rallied from a 20-month low on Christmas Eve on concerns over a global economic slowdown.

Also helping to boost stocks on Thursday was a rebound in financial shares, which ended 0.5 percent higher after having dropped as much as 1 percent. The financial index has posted gains for,上海夜网千花Daisy, seven straight sessions.

However, shares of Morgan Stanley (MS.N) ended 4.4 percent lower after the investment bank reported a lower-than-expected quarterly profit.

In after-hours trading, shares of Netflix Inc (NFLX.O) fell 2 percent after the video-streaming company reported quarterly results.

Analysts have cut their fourth-quarter profit growth forecast for S&P 500 companies to 14.2 percent from 20.1 percent estimated on Oct. 1, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by a 2.45-to-1 ratio; on the Nasdaq, a 1.69-to-1 ratio favored advancers.

The S&P 500 posted one new 52-week high and no new lows; the Nasdaq Composite recorded 29 new highs and 23 new lows.

Volume on U.S. exchanges was 7.19 billion shares, compa,上海夜生活服务Idaleen,red to the 8.58 billion average over the last 20 trading days.

Pfizer quarterly profit in line, touts pipeline of future products

( ) – Pfizer Inc on Tuesday repor,上海021夜网Queena,ted fourth-quarter profit and sales that edged past Wall Street estimates, helped by higher sales of breast cancer medicine Ibrance and pain drug Lyrica.

The largest U.S. drugmaker also touted its pipeline of drugs in development and its shares rose more than 2 percent after initially falling on a 2019 earnings forecast below Wall Street estimates. That continued a trend among major drugmakers as Johnson & Johnson and Bristol-Myers Squibb Co have also issued initial 2019 earnings forecasts below analysts’ estimates.

On a call with analysts, new,上海夜生活论坛Jacklyn, Chief Executive Albert Bourla said Pfizer had “the best pipeline in our history,” and predicted that the company would return to sustained growth beginning in the middle of 2020.

“Our job now is to stay the course,” said Bourla, who took over as CEO to start the year.

Pfizer forecast 2019 adjusted earnings of $2.82 to $2.92 per share, while analysts were estimating $3.04 per share, according to IBES data from Refinitiv. Its revenue forecast of $52 billion to $54 billion, which takes into account the impact of a stronger dollar and the loss of U.S. patent exclusivity on Lyrica around mid-year, also fell short of an,上海夜网后花园Radcliff,alysts’ estimates of $54.25 billion.

“The confidence in the pipeline and potential for accelerated growth beginning in 2020 is contributing to the positive share price reaction,” Edward Jones analyst Ashtyn Evans said.

Pfizer and partner Eli Lilly & Co also reported positive results from a late-stage trial of their experimental non-opioid arthritis treatment tanezumab, one of 15 potential billi上海夜生活论坛on-dollar drugs Pfizer says could win approval within five years. However, some analysts suggested that the new data may not alleviate safety concerns around the pain drug.

Pfizer executives said they expected flat pricing for its drugs in the United States this year, but that it was not counting on price increases to drive growth.

Bourla also said Lyrica would be its last top-selling product to go off patent until the second half of the decade.

Pfizer’s promising pipeline also includes potential blockbuster heart medicine tafamidis, as well as potentially lucrative vaccines and cancer drugs.

In the fourth quarter, Ibrance sales rose 58 percent to $1.13 billion, helped by growing demand in Europe.

Excluding items, Pfizer earned 64 cents per share, exceeding analysts’ average expectations by a penny. Revenue of $13.98 billion also edged past forecasts of $13.90 billion.

Pfizer shares were up 2.2 percent at $40.40.

‘Drain the Swamp’ Trump suggests reviving ‘earmarks’ in Congress

WASHINGTON ( ) – President Donald Trump unexpectedly suggested on Tuesday that bringing back congressional “earmarks,” spending habits that were banished six years ago from the federal budget process, might help an often deadlocked U.S. Congress get things done.

Known by their supporters as the “grease” that made Washington’s wheels turn, earmarks were funds allocated for lawmakers’ pet projects that helped secure votes needed to get broader legislation passed.

“Maybe all of you should start thinking about going back to a form of earmarks,” Trump told lawmakers who were gathered at the White House for a meeting about immigration reform.

His surprise suggestion prompted Senator Lindsey Graham, a South Carolina Republican, to exclaim, “Yeah!,” while drawing objections and laughter from others in the room.

Congress resisted using earmarks routinely for decades, but they became commonplace in the 1990s and helped define Washington’s image as a “swamp” of special interests. As a 2016 presidential candidate, Trump made “Drain the Swamp” a campaign theme and popular slogan at his political rallies.

In the meeting on Tuesday, Trump lamented the animosity between Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill.

“This system really lends itself to not getting along. It lends itself to hostility and anger,” Trump said of the difficulties of passing legislation since the practice of allowing earmarks was abandoned.

Memorable examples of the use of earmarks were a “bridge to nowhere” in Alaska and the conviction of Republican Congressman Duke Cunningham of California for taking millions of dollars in bribes linked to special projects.

Since the practice was banished in 2011, Congress has struggled to carry out its basic job of writing and approving annual budgets.

“I hear so much about earmarks, the old earmark system, how there was a great friendliness when you had earmarks,” Trump said. “We have to put better controls because it got a little bit out of hand, but maybe that brings people together. Because our system right now, the way it’s set up, will never bring people together.”

Some members of Congress have also called for reviving earmarks, but Republican Representative Mark Walker from North Carolina, who chairs a large conservative faction of the House of Representatives, drew a firm line.

“I can tell you unequivocally most of us are going to have an issue with it,” he said. “I’m in favor of not bringing them back because of the temptation to abuse that process.”

Trump and congressional Republicans f上海夜生活网inished 2017 with a victory by passing a landmark tax overhaul bill against the united opposition of Democrats.

While Republicans have majorities in both houses of Congress, they will likely need Democrats’ votes to advance other goals this year given their narrow Senate majority.

The president has be,上海夜网Lake,gun 2018 by seeking bipartisan support for immigration measures and some Democrats attended Tuesday’s meeting.

After the November 2018 congressiona,上海夜生活去哪玩Gabi,l elections though, if Republicans lose seats in Congress as histo,上海夜网邀请码Fabian,rically happens midway through the first term of a new president, Trump will need Democrats even more to follow through on his policy agenda.

American Airlines profit and forecast beat on higher fares

( ) – No. 1 U.S. carrier American Airlines (AAL.O) posted on Thursday quarterly profit and 2019 guidance that beat Wall Street estimates thanks to higher fares and healthy passenger demand, sending its shares up nearly 6 percent.

Smaller ri,上海夜网邀请码Idaline,vals Delta Air Lines Inc (DAL.N) and Uni上海夜生活论坛ted Airlines (UAL.O) had kicked off fourth-quarter earnings earlier this month with profits that also beat analysts’ expectations.

No. 2 U.S. carrier Delta, however, warned of slower revenue growth in the current quarter due to lost government business and of difficulties in introducing new aircraft because of the U.S. government shutdown that has dragged into its 34th day.

American said revenues per mile flown, a closely watched performance metric which compares sales to flight capacity, would be flat to up 2 percent in the current quarter.

A fall in unit revenue growth to less than 2 percent in the fourth quarter had sent American’s shares spinning lower when it flagged the number earlier this month.

Still, American said it expects its revenue growth to outpace rivals. It forecast $1 billion of additional revenue in 2019 as it continues to optimize its network, expands its Premium Economy product and adds new gates at its Dallas-Fort Worth and Charlotte hubs.

The company also said it sees more than $300 million of cost savings in 2019.

Thursday’s numbers showed fuel expenses rose almost 20 percent in the quarter.

,上海夜网官方网站Nala,

The company forecas,上海夜生活去哪玩Easton,t full-year earnings per share to rise between 21 percent and 65 percent, well above the 30 percent increase expected by analysts on average, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

The No. 1 U.S. airline by passenger traffic said net income, excluding special items, rose 8.3 percent to $481 million, or $1.04 per share, in the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, beating analysts’ estimate of $1.01 per share.

Total operating revenue rose 3.1 percent to $10.94 billion.

Take Five: World markets themes for the week ahead

( ) – Following are five big themes likely to dominate the thinking of investors and traders in the coming week and the stories related to them.

SHOULD I STAY OR SHOULD I GO?

Another week closer to the date Britain leaves the European Union. Or are we? Given how crushingly Prime Minister Theresa May’s proposed Brexit agreement was defeated by lawmakers, there is little chance her Plan B — to be presented in coming days — will get away with just minor amendments. So markets now reckon the March 29 deadline will be extended to give parliament more time to negotiate the manner of exit or even to organize a second referendum.

The optimism has driven sterling to two-month highs against the dollar, with 4 percent-plus gains from Jan. 3 lows. Options markets too imply further pound strength over the three-month period that encompasses the deadline.

Of course, market glee might be misplaced. If May fails to forge consensus within her party and with opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn and if parliament fails to agree an extension, Britain will crash out the EU without a deal. Corbyn wants a pledge from May to block上海夜生活网 a no-deal Brexit before joining cross-party talks, but May describes this as impossible. Her Plan B will be disclosed on Monday and voted on by parliament on Jan. 29. Sterling looks set for another volatile week.

-UK in deadlock over Brexit ‘Plan B’ as May and Corbyn tussle

– Better later: FX options signal more pound strength on Brexit delay signs

– Brighter future for sterling seen if no-deal Brexit is averted

Graphic: Sterling options – tmsnrt.rs/2T1hgW2

MOUNTAINS CAN’T TURN

Data out on Monday showed China’s economy slowed in the fourth quarter, under pressure from faltering domestic demand and bruising U.S. tariffs. Growth for 2018 fell to its lowest in nearly three decades, putting pressure on Beijing to roll out more stimulus to avert a worse slowdown.

Growing signs of weakness in China — which has generated nearly a third of gl,上海夜生活怎么玩Barrett,obal growth in recent years — are fuelling anxiety about risks to the world economy and weighing on profits for companies ranging from Apple to big carmakers. Other data just released shows investment and retail sales continued to languish, while the jobless rate edged higher.

Beijing has offered a series of fiscal and monetary support measures. Unlike in 2015 or during prior slowdowns, the government has been careful to avoid simply throwing state money at the problem. As the Chinese proverb goes, mountains cannot turn, only rivers can. Be it household spending sops, tax cuts, infrastructure projects funded by local governments or money market operations, China seems determined not to turn its back on a commitment to deleveraging and market reform. That makes it difficult to say when the economy will rebound.

– WRAPUP 2-China’s 2018 growth slows to 28-year low, more stimulus seen

-China cbank’s record $83 bln injection heightens worries over ailing economy –

-China to set lower GDP growth target of 6-6.5 pct in 2019 – sources-

Graphic: China GDP, exports, markets – tmsnrt.rs/2HhZgp3

3/DRAGHI-ING ON

ECB bond-buying is officially over, but with economic data and inflation both continuing to underwhelm, the central bank has little time to relax. Policymakers have acknowledged the euro zone slowdown could last longer than anticipated but will be hoping nonetheless that upcoming data might bring some relief.

In particular, they will monitor the snapshot of business activity in the bloc in the shape of flash PMIs for January. They are out on Thursday, hours before the ECB meeting, and polls indicate some stabilization is likely after recent dire readings. Powerhouse Germany, which barely skirted recession in the latter part of 2018, releases its ZEW sentiment survey on Tuesday.

ECB President Draghi is as yet unlikely to change his assessment of the balance of risks facing the economy, but that may be just a question of time. After all, China’s economic slowdown and the U.S. government shutdown are weighing on global growth and the euro zone still needs to weather the fallout from Brexit.

– Euro zone December inflation slowdown confirmed

– ECB hawk Lautenschlaeger has not given up on 2019 rate hike

– Euro zone economy faces longer slowdown, not recession: ECB’s Draghi

– ECB rate hike to be delayed as recession risks rise again

Graphic: German data disappoints – tmsnrt.rs/2Hm6jwL

4/SHUTDOWN SLOWDOWN?

Last year at Davos, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin sent the dollar plunging by saying a weak currency was good for the United States. This year though, with a government in shutdown, President Donald Trump has canceled Mnuchin’s Switzerland trip.

Trump is also economizing in other ways, including buying MacDonalds’ burgers for White House visitors. But anxiety is growing over how much the shutdown could hit U.S. growth and to what extent it will filter through to already stuttering world growth. So far, damage looks limited — jobless claims have continued to fall and the Philly Fed business outlook survey was above forecast.

But the longer it continues, the worse it gets. Not only are 800,000 government workers going without pay, a delay to tax refunds for other citizens will hit companies that rely on consumer spending.

The government has until early March before the debt ceiling kicks in. It could then also miss some social security payments. But the Democrat-controlled House shows no sign of agreeing Trump’s demands for $5.7 billion to fund a border wall. And a House vote to fund the govern,上海夜网Naia,ment through Feb. 28 was postponed to the coming week.

Mnuchin meanwhile has declined to testify to the House about how the shutdown may affect the upcoming tax filing season.

– On Day 28, no sign of end to U.S. partial government shutdown

– Shutdown clouds outlook for consumer-driven U.S. economic growth

– Treasury’s Mnuchin declines to testify before House panel on shutdown

Graphic: U.S. government shutdowns – tmsnrt.rs/2ASK2RN

5/IT’S COLD OUT THERE…

Yes, it is that time of year again! Movers and shakers from politics, central banks, industry and finance descend onto the Swiss Alpine town of Davos to brainstorm, chinwag, network, ski, party and figure out how to deal with some of the world’s most pressing problems.

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and German Chancellor Angela Merkel will join Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and South Africa’s Cyril Ramaphosa, among others. Of course no Davos would be complete without International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde, and Britain’s Prince William will add a splash of royal glamour. And then there are the new(ish) kids on the block: Brazil’s far-right President Jair Bolsanero, Italy’s Giuseppe Conte and his Spanish counterpart Pedro Sanchez.

But more noteworthy may be the list of those who won’t come: U.S. President Donald Trump and his cabinet, Brexit-bound British Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron, who will stay at home to deal with the “yellow vest” protests.

This year’s theme at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum? “Globalization 4.0: Shaping a Global Architecture in the Age of the Fourth Industrial Revolution”.

– coverage of the 2019 WEF: uk.reuters.com/davos

– Gloomy fo,上海夜哪里艳遇Tallulah,recast for Davos: crises aplenty, but few world leaders

– Merkel to attend Davos and discuss Europe, Africa, AI

– Trump cancels U.S. delegation to Davos forum

UBS sets gloomy tone for Europe’s banks

ZURICH ( ) – UBS (UBSG.S) warned of a tough start to 2019, after reporting an outflow of funds from its flagship wealth management business at the end of last year, sending a shiver through the European banking sector.

Shares in Switzerland’s biggest bank fell 4 percent on Tuesday after its fourth quarter earnings fell short of analyst expectations, with the bank blaming geopolitical tensions and trade disputes for the underperformance.

UBS is the first major European bank to report fourt,上海夜生活男人好去处Earl,h quarter earnings, and shares in rivals Credit Suisse (CSGN.S) and Deutsche Bank (DBKGn.DE) fell as investors fretted over similar news from them next month.

UBS’s pivot to focus more on managing money for the world’s rich and less on volatile areas of investment banking over the past six years or so had made it one of the most stable performers among large European banks.

But the fall in earnings shows its private banking business is not immune to market swings, with much of its earnings dependent on clients’ w,上海夜网千花Talon,illingness to invest.

“Of course in the current environment when you see trading in investment banking perform less, you see wealth management also having its issues with money and net new money figures,” Chairman Axel Weber said in an interview on Bloomberg TV, “but by and large this,上海凤楼夜网Landon, is a stable fee-earning business.”

Overall, UBS generated $862 million in fourth-quarter pre-tax earnings, missing analyst expectations for $985 million in the consensus provided by the bank.

The Zurich-based lender, which manages more than $2 trillion of the world’s wealth, posted a 22 percent dip in fourth-quarter adjusted pre-tax earnings in wealth management as clients reduced risk in their portfolios, traded less and built up their cash positions.

The unit saw $7.9 billion in net new money outflows, a closely watched metric of future earnings.

Chief Executive Sergio Ermotti said UBS should be able to get back to bringing in fresh money, with the bank reaffirming targets to grow wealth management’s pre-tax profit at the upper end of a 10-15 percent target over 2019-2021.

Ermotti said in October he had no doubt the bank could deliver superior and sustainable shareholder value, regardless of market conditions, but on Tuesday acknowledged its path to hitting its return on capital and cost-income targets for the year had become “steeper”.

The investment bank also had a torrid quarter with a fall in earnings in its trading, capital markets and advisory businesses.

Related CoverageUBS CEO says succession ‘years away’UBS won’t take lead in consolidating European bank sector: Weber

In equities, usually an area of strength, UBS posted a 13 percent drop in earnings from a year earlier, bucking the trend seen at U.S. banks last week which largely had a strong quarter for stock market trading.

The bank proposed a dividend of 0.70 Swiss francs for 2018, up from 0.65 Swiss francs the prior year, and said it aimed to buy back up to $上海夜生活网1 billion in shares in 2019.

($1 = 0.9976 Swiss francs)

Nippon Life president says actively exploring M&A in U.S.

TOKYO ( ) – Nippon Life Insurance Co is actively seeking mergers and acquisitions overseas, with a focus on the United States and Asia’s emerging economies, the president of Japan’s largest life insurer said on Monday.

Japanese insurers have been among the most aggressive in overseas acquisitions. Yet, unlike smaller rivals, Nippon Life has not made a deal in the United States, except for a minority stake in asset management company TCW Group in 2017.

“The United States is the world’s largest life insurance market. We are looking for ,上海夜网邀请码Barney,ways to expand our ,上海夜玩网论坛Cade,business there,” President Hiroshi Shimizu told in an interview.

“We would also like to explore various possibilitie,上海高端夜生活在那里Dakota,s in Asia’s emerging countries,” he said, but did not provide details.

While life insurers say there is still room for growth in Japan as its ageing demographics is likely to create demand for new insurance products in nursing and medical care, they are under increasing pressure to look overseas as their home market is faced with a shrinking population.

Nippon Life is a mutual company owned by its insurance policy holders. It has made a string of acquisitions in recent years and had total assets of about 78 trillion yen ($711.6 billion) as of the end of September last year.

Last year, Nippon Life bought an 85.1 percent stake in the Japanese unit of U.S.-based MassMutual Financial Group for about 100 billion yen, with the aim of tapping MassMutual’s wealthy clientele. In 2016, it made a $2.5 billion purchase of smaller domestic rival Mitsui Life Insurance Co to bolster sales through bank branch network上海夜生活网s.

With these acquisitions and a new company being readied for third-party insurance agents sales channel, Shimizu said Nippon Life has acquired units necessary for the domestic life insurance business for the time being.

The company is now shifting greater emphasis to building up overseas businesses.

Nippon Life bought an 80 percent stake in MLC Ltd, operator of Australia’s fourth-largest life insurer, from National Australia Bank Ltd (NAB.AX) for A$2.4 billion in 2016.

But Nippon Life is the only one among Japan’s top four private-sector life insurance companies that has not made a major acquisition in the United States.

Rival Dai-ichi Life Holdings Inc (8750.T) bought U.S. insurer Protective Life Corp for about $5.6 billion in 2015, followed by Sumitomo Life’s $3.7 billion acquisition of Symetra Financial Corp and Meiji Yasuda Life’s $5 billion buy of StanCorp Financial Group in 2016.

“We cannot expand life insurance and asset management by ourselves alone overseas, we need to find partners that we can have long-term trust relationship with,” Shimizu said.

Long winter’s nap? Global slowdown, market fears could extend Fed…

WASHINGTON ( ) – Ebbing global growth and shaky financial markets threw the U.S. Federal Reserve off course in early 2016, and it took nearly a year for officials to regain confidence growth would continue and convince investors they would again raise interest rates.

Similar conditions confront Fed policymakers as they meet this week, with market skepticism about further rate hikes as deep as it was three years ago, and a stalemate over global trade, a U.S. federal government shutdown, and waning business and consumer confidence further clouding the picture.

Policymakers have been clear they plan a “patient” pause in rate hikes. The challenge for Fed chairman Jerome Powell is how much of a pause to signal without leaving the public convinced that the Fed’s current cycle of rising interest rates has come to a full stop.

“Realistically it is a second half of the year story,” for the Fed to feel secure the U.S. recovery is sturdy enough to warrant further rate increases, said Robin Brooks, chief economist for the Institute of International Finance. While some current conditions are healthier than they were in 2016, with historically low unemployment, for example, “what’s different on the negative side is the sheer amount of noise in the system.”

That includes issues, such as the U.S.-China trade spat that could be resolved soon, clear away some of the doubts that are holding back business spending, and improve the Fed’s outlook.

But policymakers are now in no rush, with some framing the likely pause in terms of “months” that may be needed for risks to subside enough for them to approve the next of two rates hikes expected for the year.

Even that may be optimistic. While economists polled by this month see those hikes delayed by a quarter compared with a December survey, financial markets do not price in any rate increases in 2019.

Some economists now argue the central bank’s next move will be to loosen monetary policy – whether through a rate cut, or slowing the monthly rundown of the Fed’s balance sheet that acts as a further, if small, tightening of economic conditions each month.

The drawdown of the balance sheet by up to $50 billion a month was designed as a non-controversial way to reverse the Fed’s accumulation of trillions of dollars during the financial crisis a decade ago. But there has been increasing pressure — from markets and President Donald Trump – for the central bank to slow the process or stop altogether.

BALANCING ACT

The Fed “needs a graceful way to back off” a three-year-old tightening cycle that was expected to continue into next year, wrote Steven Blitz, U.S. economist for TS Lombard. He said he anticipated the Fed will signal its new plans by changing the balance sheet program at this meeting or the next one in March, then be forced to cut rates later ,上海夜生活Jackson,in the year.

The Jan. 29-30 Fed meeting this week is the first of 2019. There will be no updated rate or economic projections from policymakers, but Powell is set to hold the first of eight post-meeting news conferences scheduled for the year, one after every session of the Feder,上海夜生活怎么玩Macey,al Open Market Committee.

It marks a change from the previous practice of briefing the media after every other meeting, a step Powell said will increase public transparency, and for,上海夜生活论坛Hadleigh,ce investors to treat each Fed session the same.

It also doubles the chance for a communications misstep, and next week’s appearance will pose a “delicate” communications as Powell weighs the fact that a strong U.S. economy may warrant higher rates against slowing world growth and financial markets flashing recession fears, said J.P. Morgan economist Michael Feroli said in a preview analysis of the coming Fed session.

“We think they will try to avoid giving the impression that pause equals stop (or even cut) or that the economic outlook has materially downshifted.”

The Fed has rarely followed an extended pause in rate increases with a renewed push higher. The last time it did was in the mid-1990s during the “Great Moderation” period of steady growth and surging productivity.

Yet that is what Powel上海夜生活网l may have to engineer, soothing for now anyone nervous about the depth of a possible slowdown without promising that rates will not go up anymore, and clarifying along the way what may happen with the balance sheet.

“The essential debate…is whether the FOMC would still prefer to signal to the market that the next change in interest rates is likely higher or whether it should emphasize patience and remove rate guidance altogether,” Barclays economist Michael Gapen wrote. The latter, he said, may calm markets today, but set the stage “for undesirable volatility later” if the Fed does need to hike again.

Written by shyw on May 26, 2019 Categories: trlixvgg Tags: , ,

Franken and Franks resign as misconduct charges batter Congress

WASHINGTON ( ) – U.S. Democratic Senator Al Franken announced his resignation on Thursday after facing a series of sexual misconduct allegations, and Republican Representative Trent Franks also said he was stepping down as he too was hit with ethics charges.

Franken, buffeted for weeks by sexual harassment charges and under pressure from party colleagues, said on the Senate floor he would leave in a few weeks, although he denied some of the allegations against him and questioned others.

The 66-year-old former comedian from Minnesota had been seen as a rising star in the Democratic Party.

“I know in my heart that nothing I’ve done,上海高端夜生活在那里Gabriel, as a senator – nothing – has brought dishonor on this institution,” he said. “Nevertheless, today I am announcing that in the coming weeks, I will be resigning as a member of the United States Senate.”

Hours later, Franks announced his resignation after two former staff members complained about discussions he had with them about his efforts to find a surrogate mother.

“I deeply regret that my discussion of this option and process in the workplace caused distress,” said Franks, who was first elected to his Arizona congressional seat in 2002 and is an outspoken opponent of abortion.

Franks said in a statement that he and his wife “have long struggled with infertility.”

The developments came with Congress already held in low regard by voters. According to a /Ipsos poll,,上海夜生活群Tabitha, only 20 percent approved of the way Congress was handling its job, with 70 percent disapproving.

In recent weeks, charges of sexual misconduct have taken down prominent people in the worlds of entertainment, media and politics.

It is somewhat rare for members of the Senate or House of Representatives to resign from office, but veteran Democratic Representative John Conyers also resigned earlier this week amid sexual harassment accusations that he has denied.

The House Ethics Committee said on Thursday it was investigating yet another lawmaker. Blake Farenthold, a Republican representative from Texas, faces allegations of sexual harassment, discrimination and retaliation involving a former female staff member.

Franken has the highest profile of the lawmakers hit by allegations in the past few weeks.

has not independently verified the accusations against Franken, Franks, Conyers or Farenthold.

SENATE BALANCE OF POWER

Franken’s seat will initially be filled by a Democrat appointed by Minnesota’s Democratic governor, meaning the Republicans’ slim majority in the Senate will not change.

Allegations that Franken had groped and tried to kiss women without their consent began to surface three weeks ago.

He initially said he was embarrassed and ashamed by his behavior but would not resign.

But the majority of his Democratic colleagues in the Senate called on Wednesday for his resignation after a new allegation, denied by Franken, hit the news.

“Some of the allegations against me are simply not true. Others I remember very differently,” Franken said on Thursday.

Striking a tone of defiance, he also sought to contrast himself with two prominent Republicans – President Donald Trump and Senate candidate Roy Moore.

“I, of all people, am aware that there is some irony in the fact that I am leaving while a man who has bragged on tape about his history of sexual assault sits in the Oval Office and a man who has repeatedly preyed on young girls campaigns for the Senate, with the full support of his party,” he said.

Trump was heard bragging about kissing and forcibly touching women in a 2005 videotape that surfaced last year as he was running for the White House. He apologized for the remarks, but called them private “locker-room talk” and said he had not done the things he talked about.

Trump also denied allegations at that time by at least 12 women of sexual advances and groping in the past.

Moore, who is running for the Senate in Alabama in a special election on Tuesday, has been accused by several women of sexual assault or misconduct when they were teenagers and Moore was in his early 30s. Moore, 70, has denied the accusations, which has not independently verified.

Trump has backed Moore, but Senate Republicans have been cooler toward his candidacy.

SEEKING THE HIGH GROUND

In pressing Franken to step aside, Democrats have tried to capture the moral high ground and draw a distinction between their party and Republicans.

“In every workplace in America, including the U.S. Senate, we must confront the challenges of harassment and misconduct,” said Amy Klobuchar, Franken’s fellow Democratic senator from Minnesota.

Similarly, House Republican Speaker Paul Ryan said on Thursday he had told Franks that he should resign.

A special election will be scheduled to determine a replacement for Franks.

While a Democrat will be appointed initially to replace Franken, his departure could complicate the party’s efforts to maintain or build on the 46 Senate seats they hold. Two independent senators also vote with the Democrats.

Republicans are defending eight seats in the congressional elections in November 2018 but Democra,上海夜网Idaleen,ts will b上海夜网e defending 26 if Minnesota holds a special election for Franken’s seat.

The election to fill Franken’s seat could be close. When he ran in 2008, the race was decided after an extensive recount, with Minnesota’s Supreme Court weighing in.

In the 2016 presidential election, Democrat Hillary Clinton won the state by less than 2 percentage points.

‘Maddening’ U.S. shutdown hangs over airlines even as profits beat

CHICAGO ( ) – Three major U.S. airlines said on Thursday the U.S. government partial shutdown had not yet had a major financial impact but a tipping point might be near.

The carriers expressed their concerns after reporting quarterly earnings that beat Wall Street expectations thanks to healthy passenger demand.

“It is maddening … No one can predict what impact it will have as it continues,” Southwest Airlines Co Chief Executive Gary Kelly said of the shutdown.

A poll of economists showed that U.S. economic growth will take a hit this quarter from the government shutdown, in its 34th day and the longest in U.S. history. Airlines in turn will feel the impact because their fortunes are tied closely to the health of the economy.

As a result of the shutdown, airport security workers and air traffic controllers continued to go without pay, stretching staffing and creating long lines at some airports and flight delays.

The Transportation Security Administration said 7.5 percent of the nation’s 51,000 airport security officers were absent on Wednesday, down from a recent high of 10 percent on Sunday.

Federal workers who oversee route authorizations and aircraft certifications were also furloughed because of the shutdown, delaying Southwest’s plans to launch service to Hawaii early this year.

Two measures to end the partial U.S. government shutdown – one backed by Republicans and one by Democrats – failed in the Senate on Thursday.

Most airlines said the financial impact of the shutdown thus far had been limited,,上海夜生活群Caitlin, but JetBlue Airways Corp Chief Executive Robin Hayes warned that the U.S. aviation system is nearing a “tipping point.”

“And the longer this goes on, the longer it will take for the air travel infrastructure to rebound,” Hayes said.

No. 1 U.S. carrier American Airlines Group Inc said the shutdown caused “a bit of softness” for flights in the next 14 days.

“We encourage the government to get reopened,” American Chief Executive Doug Parker said.

STRONG DEMAND

All three airlines that reported earnings before the markets closed on Thursday beat Wall Street expectations — American, Southwest and JetBlue.

The profit beats, which mirrored solid results from Delta Air Lines and United Airlines earlier this month, boosted shares and eased concerns about the impact of slower global economic growth.

Shares of American and Southwest each closed 6 percent higher while those of JetBlue ended up 5 percent, lifting the broader Dow Jones U.S. Airlines Index.

American said overall demand, including for corporate travel, remained strong, and forecast $1 billion of additional revenue in 2019 as it continues to expand its Premium Economy product and adds gates at its Dallas-Fort Worth and Charlotte hubs.

The company, based in Fort Worth, Texas, forecast an increase in full-year earnings per share of 21 percent to 65 percent, compared with the 30 percent expected by analysts on average, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

It said net income, excluding special items, rose 8.3 percent to $481 million, or $1.04 per share, in the fourth quarter. That beat analysts’ estimate of $1.01 per share.

上海夜生活论坛Total operating revenue rose 3.1 percent to $10.94 billion.

Southwest, the fourth-largest U.S. airline by passenger traffic, said revenue per available seat mile would rise in the 4 percent ,上海晚上耍女人的地方Tamara,to 5 percent range in the first quarter after a 1.8 percent increase in the fourth quarter.

Net income at Southwest, a low-cost carrier, fell,上海夜生活论坛Nadine, 63 percent to $654 million, or $1.17 per share, in the fourth quarter, from a year earlier, when it recorded a big tax benefit. EPS beat analysts’ average estimate of $1.07, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

New York-based JetBlue, the sixth-largest U.S. airline, also posted a fourth-quarter profit on Thursday above Wall Street estimates.

Factbox: Some rule changes now on go-slow due to U.S. shutdown

WASHINGTON ( ) – The ongoing federal government shutdown is impeding efforts to advance several rule changes that aim to make life easier for financial institutions.

Here are some projects stuck in regulatory limbo:

“VOLCKER RULE” OVERHAUL

Last year, the two markets regulators and three banking regulators agreed to review the “Volcker Rule”, ,上海夜玩网论坛Tamara,a post-crisis rule barring banks from proprietary trading. The public comment period on simplifying the rule ended on Oct. 17, and the agencies are currently reviewing that feedback. However, relevant officials at the Securities and Exchange Commission and Commodity Futures Trading Commission are furloughed, meaning interagency work on the rule is stalled.

COMMUNITY BANK RELIEF FROM THE “VOLCKER RULE”

On Dec. 21, the same five regulators jointly proposed a separate rule that would exempt banks with less than $10 billion in assets and relatively light trading activity from the Volcker Rule. This proposal was mandated by legislation Congress passed in May. The rule must now be opened up to public comments for 30 days, but this cannot happen until it is published in the Federal Register where the majority of staff are furloughed.

TAILORING BIG BANK RULES

In October, the Federal Reserve proposed a new package to ease regulation on all but the nation’s largest banks, establishing four tiers of rules for institutions, with larger firms facing,上海夜生活男人好去处Hadrian, harsher restraints. The proposal implements a central part of May’s bank deregulation law.

The comment period for that proposal expires on Jan. 22, but the Fed will not be able to finalize that rule until the Federal Register is fully operational.

BROKERED DEPOSITS

On Dec. 19, the Federal Deposit Insurance Cor,上海夜网千花Dalton,poration (FDIC) finalized a new rule easing restrictions on deposits placed with banks by third party brokers. But that change cannot take effect until it is published in the Federal Register. At the same time, the FDIC also sought comment on whether it should further update its brokered deposit rules and related interest rate caps to better include technological changes. The FDIC gave the public 90 days to comment on potential changes, but that cannot kick off until it too is published in the Federal 上海夜生活Register.

CORPORATE GOVERNANCE

Before the shutdown, the SEC said it was considering tweaking rules in two high-profile areas: quarterly reporting by public companies and shareholder voting rights. Both projects are in early stages, with the SEC soliciting initial feedback. But with most SEC employees furloughed, the shutdown has put those projects are now on go-slow.

Boeing’s flying car lifts off in race to revolutionize urban travel

SEATTLE ( ) – Boeing Co said on Wednesday its flying car prototype hovered briefly in the air during an inaugural test flight, a small but significant step as the world’s largest planemaker bids to revo,夜上海419龙凤论坛Jacklyn,lutionize urban transportation and parcel delivery services.

Boeing is competing with arc,上海夜生活怎么玩Lance,h-rival Airbus SE and numerous other firms to introduce small self-flying vehicles capable of vertical takeoff and landing.

The investments, fueled by leaps in autonomous technology as much as frustration with road congestion, could change the face of the aerospace industry within the next decade.

Boeing’s 30-foot-long (9 meter) aircraft – part helicopter, part drone and part fixed-wing plane – lifted a few feet off the ground and made a soft landing after less than a minute of being airborne on Tuesday at an airport in Manassas, Virginia, Boeing said.

Future flights will test forward, wing-borne flight.

“This is what revolution looks like, and it’s because of autonomy,” John Langford, president and chief executive officer of Boeing subsidiary Aurora Flight Sciences, said in a news release announcing the test flight.

Major hurdles to Boeing’s vision of “low-stress” mobility – as it is called in the company’s marketing materials – include sorting out numerous critical safety and regulatory issues to meld traditional roadway traffic with fleets of flying cars.

Boeing is working with startup SparkCognition Inc and the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration to develop a traffic-management system for three-dimensional highways, as well as the regulatory framework that will allow waves of autonomous vehicles to zip safely around buildings, the company has said.

Boeing bought Manassas-based Aurora Flight Sciences last year to speed development of a fleet of autonomous air vehicles. With Aurora, Boeing is also working on Uber Technologies Inc’s [UBER.UL] UberAIR service for flights that are planned to be available for order via smartphones around 2023.

Boeing is looking to achieve a range of 50 miles with two flying car variants capable of carrying two and four passengers each. Tests are planned for later this year on a package-hauling version that can lift up to 500 pounds (226.8 kg).

Competitors range from Airbus, which says it has already conducted numerous flying上海夜网 vehicle test flights, to Volocopter, which has tested drone taxis that resemble a small helicopter powered by 18 rotors, and AeroMobil, with a stretch-limousine concept that can turn into a fixed-wing aircraft.

Vertical Aerospace, which completed a flight test last year, aims to offer short inter-city flights in the coming years with a piloted aircraft capable of carrying multiple passengers.

“The future of mobility – moving goods, moving cargo – moving people – that future is happening now and it’s going to accelerate over the next five years and ramp up even more beyond that,” Dennis Muilenburg, Boeing’s president, chairman and CEO, told a panel at the World Economic Foru,上海夜网千花Cadence,m in Davos, Switzerland, on Wednesday.

Exclusive: No-deal Brexit puts Bentley’s return to profit at risk

CREWE, England ( ) – Loss-making carmaker Bentley is on track to be profitable this year but a no-deal Brexit puts that at “fundamental risk”, its boss told , adding that the chance of Britain leaving the EU on March 29 with a deal now seemed “fairly low.”

Britain, the world’s fifth largest economy, is due to leave the European Union, the globe’s biggest trading bloc, in 66 days but the government’s negotiated deal was rejected by lawmakers, leaving open the possibility of a disorderly Brexit.

The car industry, which employs over 850,000 people in the country, has warned that any tariffs and customs checks would hit firms such as Bentley’s parent company Volkswagen (VOWG_p.DE) as it both exports from Britain and imports vehicles and components.

Bentley, which made a 137 million-euro ($156 million) loss in the first nine months of last year, is undergoing a turnaround under new boss Adrian Hallmark, who said the group is on course to return to the black, but that plan could be undone depending on the form Brexit takes.

“It’s Brexit that’s the killer,” he told .

“If we ended up with a hard Brexit… that would hit us this year because we do have a potential to get beyond break-even to do the turnaround.”

“It would put at fundamental risk our chance of becoming profitable.”

Like other carmakers, the high-end brand is taking steps to prepare, including building up stocks of imported parts from two days to 10 days and building a higher proportion of cars for some non-European markets in the next few months.

“We will build more cars for China or the U.S. than we would normally do in the six-month period,” Hallmark said.

MILLIONS OF POUNDS OF BREXIT PLANNING

Hallmark said he believed the company was prepared and did not plan to temporarily halt output after Britain leaves the bloc on March 29, as planned by fellow automakers Mini and Honda.

“Carry more stock, and it’s a few million (pounds) per year … If we had to stop production, then that would be a similar value per day,” he said.

Hallmark said were three possible outcomes on Brexit: a deal by March 29 which has a “fairly low” probability, no deal with “a degree of unrest and chaos” or an extension to Britain’s EU membership.

German automakers BMW (BMWG.DE), Daimler (DAIGn.DE) and Volkswagen made around 40 percent of the 2.37 million cars sold in Britain last year, with less than 10 percent of the total built in the country.

In 2016, Britain was the largest single expo,上海夜生活Idaline,rt market for German automakers, which sold 800,000 new cars there, or 20 percent of their overall global exports.

Of the top 10 automotive plants which export the highest proportions of their output to Britain, seven are in Germany, including Ford (F.N) in Cologne, PSA (PEUP.PA) in Eisenach, Volkswagen in Ingolstadt and Mercedes in Bremen, according to data compile,上海夜生活网419Fabiana,d by LMC Automotive.

Britain’s Brexit negotiators have pointed to the car industry as an example of where the EU would lose out if there were new trade barriers, a source close to the matter told last year.

VW-owned Bentley, based in the northern English town of Crewe, recorded a 5 percent decline in 2018 sales to 10,494 vehicles, hit by a delay in the arrival of its Continental GT model. In China, sales rose 19 percent.

Asked whether the company might move some Bentley production out of Britain to overcome any Brexit hit, Hallmark said he did not see that happening in the medium term.

“You can never say never but there’s no intention of moving what we have to other facilities because of Brexit,” he said.

“When we look at new products, are they under question? Of course they ar上海夜生活论坛e like every product ,上海足浴夜网联系方式Hal,that is in there was under question … We have to be competitive and we are.”

Sears chairman prevails in bankruptcy auction for retailer with…

NEW YORK ( ) – Sears Holdings Corp Chairman Eddie Lampert prevailed in a bankruptcy auction for the U.S. department store chain with an improved takeover bid of roughly $5.2 billion, allowing the 126-year-old retailer to keep its doors open, people familiar with the matter said Wednesday.

Lampert’s bid, boosted from an earlier $5 billion offer, prevailed after weeks of back-and-forth deliberations that culminated in a days-long bankruptcy auction held behind closed doors. The billionaire’s proposal, made through his hedge fund ESL Investments Inc, will save up to 45,000 jobs and keep 425 stores open across the United States.

Lampert boosted his bid by adding more cash and assuming more liabilities, the sources said. The auction, held at the Manhattan offices of Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP, the law firm representing Sears, concluded in the early morning hours of Wednesday.

There remains a chance the deal c上海夜生活网ould fall apart, as it still must be documented and approved by a U.S. bankruptcy judge. A hearing is expected to be scheduled for later this week.

A group of creditors is objecting to the deal, one of the sources said.

The sources asked not to be identified because the matter is confidential. Spokespeople for Sears and ESL did not immediately return requests for comment.

Lampert’s only challenger in the auction was Sears itself, and how much it would reap in a sale of its businesses and assets in pieces, the people said.

The deal faced a number of hurdles before the sides reached an agreement.

A creditor group had been calling for its liquidation, saying they would recover more in a wind-down and through lawsuits against ESL for deals it had done with Sears in the past. Lampert has said they were proper.

Sears had believed Lampert’s,上海夜网Oakley, earlier bids fell short of covering the bills the retailer has racked up since filing for bankruptcy protection in October. A bedrock principle of bankruptcy cases is that those expenses must be fully repaid.

The retailer is one of the highest-profile victims of the financial carnage in retail to,上海夜生活论坛Lance, date as online shopping on sites including Amazon.com Inc soared in popularity.

Unlike Sears, which plans to remain in business, toy seller Toys “R” Us Inc and department store The Bon-Ton Stores Inc closed down last year after losing the support of debt investors or failing to find a buyer.

L,上海晚上耍女人的地方Babette,ampert, Sears’ biggest lender and shareholder before it filed for bankruptcy, merged the department store with discount chain Kmart in 2005 in an $11 billion deal.

Trump draws rebukes after touting aviation safety record

WASHINGTON ( ) – U.S. President Donald Trump took credit on Tuesday for a record year of safety for commercial aviation in 2017, swiftly drawing criticism and derision from commentators who said the achievement reflected trends predating his administration.

“Since taking office I have been very strict on Commercial Aviation. Good news – it was just reported that there were Zero deaths in 2017, the best and safest year on record!” Trump tweeted on Tuesday.

Two safety groups reported on Monday that worldwide there were no fatal passenger jet crashes in 2017, the safest year on record.

Current and former aviation safety officials said Trump was not responsible for last year’s unblemished commercial passenger jet safety record, citing years-long improvements in safety and the fact that no U.S. passenger airliner has had a fatal crash since 2009.

Aviation Safety Network President Harro Ranter, whose group tracks aviation incidents, said in an email: “It’s impossible to link the worldwide level of safety directly to recent U.S. policy changes.

“U.S. efforts have been instrumental to get to where we are today, but it takes years for policy changes to reach effect, and only in conjunction with other efforts by the aviation industry,” Ranter said.

Trump has been frequently criticized for taking credit for developments tha,上海夜网后花园Nadia,t could not be directly attributed to his administration.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders did not answer directly when asked at a briefing if Trump’s White House predecessor, Barack Obama, also deserved credit for the long stretch without a U.S. commercial passenger jet crash.

Trump, who took office in January 2017, discussed aviation on only a couple of occasions last year. In remarks to airli,上海夜生活网交流Ida,ne executives in February, he did not raise safety but criticized the “regulatory morass” affecting the industry.

Sanders said Trump “has raised the bar for our nation’s aviation safety and security,” citing his proposal to privatize air traffic control, which has not been approved, and the Homeland Security Department’s enhanced security measures.

In March, the United States imposed restrictions on passengers carrying laptops in cabins on nine primarily Middle Eastern airlines to address the potential threat of hidden explosives. It lifted the restrictions in July after announcing new security requirements.

In a tongue-in-cheek thank you to Trump, actor Bryan Cranston, who starred in TV’s “Breaking Bad,’ tweeted: “Your active particip,夜上海论坛Tabitha,ation monitoring the flight patterns and safety regulations was greatly appreciated. In 2018 could you please turn上海夜生活网 your efforts toward preventing wildfires and hurricanes?”

Democrats vow to force vote on net neutrality

WASHINGTON ( ) – U.S. Senate Democrats said on Tuesday they will force a vote later this year on the U.S. Federal Communications Commission’s reversal of landmark Obama administration net neutrality rules and will try to make it a key issue in the 2018 congressional elections.

Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer said the issue will be a major motivating factor for young voters the party is courting. “We’re going to let everyone know where we stand and they stand,” Schumer said at a Capitol Hill news conference in Washington.

Democrats picked up a key vote when Republican Senator Susan Collins said on Tuesday she would back the effort to overturn the FCC’s recent move. “She believes that a careful, deliberative process involving experts and the public is warranted to e,上海夜生活Qirin,nsure that consumers have strong protections that guarantee consumer choice, free markets, and continued growth,” a spokeswoman for Collins said.

The FCC voted in December along party lines to reverse rules introduced in 2015 that barred internet service providers from blocking or throttling traffic, or of,上海夜网邀请码Nadia,fering paid fast lanes. A group of state attorneys general immediately vowed to sue.

A trade group representing major tech c上海夜生活网ompanies including Facebook Inc, Alphabet Inc and Amazon.com Inc said last week it will support legal challenges to the reversal.

The vote in December marked a victory for AT&T Inc, Comcast Corp and Verizon Communications Inc and hands them power over what content consumers can access over the internet. It was the biggest win for FCC Chairman Ajit Pai in his sweeping effort to undo many telecommunications regulations.

Senate Democrats on Tuesday called the FCC decision “un-American” and an “all-out assault on consumers.”

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican, backs the FCC repeal. A reversal of the FCC vote would need the approval of the Senate, U.S. House and President Donald Trump. Trump also backed the FCC action, the White House said last month.

The FCC order grants internet providers sweeping new powers to block, throttle or discriminate among internet content, but requires public disclosure of those practices. Internet providers have vowed n,上海夜玩网论坛Quaid,ot to change how consumers obtain online content.

Democrats say net neutrality is essential to protect consumers, while Republicans say the rules hindered investment by providers and were not needed.

Democratic Senator Ed Markey said on Tuesday he had 39 co-sponsors to force a vote, but it is not clear when the vote will occur since the new rules will not take effect for at least another three months. “There will be a political price to pay for those who are on the wrong side of history,” Markey said.

Republicans control the Senate with 51 votes out of the 100-member body, so Democrats would need at least one more Republican to back overturning the FCC action.

Senator Brian Schatz, a Hawaii Democrat, said the issue was resonating with teenagers and college students. “People are mobilizing across the country to save the free and open internet,” he said.

Written by shyw on February 10, 2019 Categories: trlixvgg Tags: , , ,

Global FDI skids 19 percent on Trump tax reform, may rebound in…

GENEVA ( ) – Global foreign direct investment (FDI) fell 19 percent last year to an estimated $1.2 trillion, largely caused by U.S. President Donald Trump’s tax reforms, the United Nations trade and development agency UNCTAD said on Monday.

FDI, comprising cross-border mergers and acquisitions (M&A), intra-company loans and investment in start-up projects abroad, is a bellwether of globalization and a potential sign of growth of corporate supply chains and future trade ties.

But it can also go into reverse as companies pull investments out of foreign projects or repatriate earnings.

The lowest net global FDI since 2009 was the result of U.S. firms repatriating $300 billion or more in accumulated earnings to take advantage of Trump’s tax break.

Net investment flows into Europe slumped by an unprecedented 73 percent to $100 billion, a level not seen since the 1990s, as U.S. firms pulled years of profits out of affiliates in Ireland, Switzerland and elsewhere.

UNCTAD investment chief James Zhan told reporters that U.S. repatriation of profits had slowed down and an FDI rebound was possible this year, but there were also growing risks.

“It’s what we call the potential trade-investment-technology war that will affect global investment, and we see that the rising protectionist measures of a number of countries and the prospects for global economic gro,上海夜生活群Gabe,wth are worsening,” Zhan said.

The United States remained the top destination for FDI in 2018, attracting $226 billion, 18 percent less than in 2017.

Second was China, up 3 percent to $142 billion, and third was Britain, which saw a 20 percent jump to $122 billion, mainly due to a doubling of reinvested earnings and a tripling in the value of M&A deals.

“Despite the huge uncertainty related to the Brexit, the UK government has intensified its effort to promote and facilitate new investment, as well as to retain existing investment in the country, including formulating a strategy and adopting new measures for attracting foreign investment,” Zhan told .

Notable megadeals included Comcast’s (CMCSA.O) $40 billion acquisition of Sky, Vantif’s $10 billion purchase of Worldpay, and the acquisition of Unilever’s margarine & spreads business for $8 billion by KKR & Co.

One major growth area in 2018 was the value of newly announced “greenfield” investments into developing countries in Asia,,上海夜网Quay, which rose 84 percent to $390 billion.

Zhan said the rise was largely due to firms restructuring supply chains in Southeast Asia, driven by a desire to avoid getting caught up in trade tensions, as well as by new opportunities from the 11-country Compreh,上海夜生活服务Macauly,ensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement and investment li上海夜网beralization in China.

Written by shyw on February 3, 2019 Categories: trlixvgg Tags: , , ,

GSK Chairman Hampton to step down ahead of split

( ) – GlaxoSmithKline Plc (GSK.L) Chairman Philip Hampton will step down after more than three and a half years in the role, as Britain’s biggest drugmaker prepares to split its business into two.

The announcement comes a month after GSK’s Chief Executive Emma Walmsley announced her boldest plans yet – to split the company into two businesses — one for prescription drugs and vaccines, the other for over-the-counter products.

Walmsley, who took the helm in 2017, announced in December that GSK and Pfizer (PFE.N) would combine their consumer health businesses in a joint venture with sales of 9.8 billi,上海021夜网Talon,on pounds ($12.7 billion), 68 percent-owned by the British company, in an all-equity transaction.

“Following the announcement of our deal with Pfizer and the intended separation of the new consumer business, I believe thi,上海夜网Kailani,s is the right moment to step down and allow a new Chair to oversee this process through to its conclusion over the next few years,” Hamp,上海凤楼夜网Kai,ton said in a statement.

Hampton, aged 65, was paid a sum of 700,000 pounds ($900,550), of which he elected to take 25 percent in GSK shares, according to the company’s 2017 annual report.

He took the top job at GSK at a testing time – just after a profit warning in 2014 due to weak sales of its core respiratory drugs.

The Briton was tasked with helping steer the drugmaker back to sustainable growth. Shares of GSK have, however, remained flat after peaking about 17 percent during his tenure.

They were little 上海夜网changed in early trading on Monday.

GSK, whose consumer products include Sensodyne toothpaste and Panadol painkillers, has lagged rivals in recent years in producing multibillion-dollar blockbusters and it largely sat out a spate of dealmaking by rivals under previous CEO Andrew Witty.

Seeking to reassure investors of its financial strength, GSK extended its guarantee on the dividend by stating it expected to pay unchanged dividends of 80 pence per share for 2019.

Before joining GSK, Hampton was chairman of Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc (RBS.L) and J Sainsbury plc (SBRY.L).

He was parachuted in to help rescue RBS following its 45 billion pounds bailout during the financial crisis and led the bank through a turbulent period of transition.

GSK, which has been looking to buy early-stage assets and partner with companies, said it had started the search for a successor.

Written by shyw on January 20, 2019 Categories: trlixvgg Tags: , ,