Antony's Feed
Jul 23, 2015
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Lazard and Evercore do more with less in M&A boom

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The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Lazard and Evercore are doing more with less in the continuing M&A boom. Second-quarter results this week show the two independent advisers have not reaped as much benefit as bulge-bracket rivals from the recent dealmaking surge. But they leave more of the gains for shareholders.

Jul 22, 2015
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John Thain leads way for U.S. regional bank M&A

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The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

John Thain is leading the way for U.S. regional bank M&A. The boss of CIT – and the former chief executive of both Merrill Lynch and the NYSE – on Tuesday secured regulatory approval to buy OneWest for $3.4 billion. The deal is the first since the financial crisis struck to transform a run-of-the-mill financial institution into a systemically important one. That should clear the way for more deals.

Jul 16, 2015
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Goldman for once may miss mega-bank sprawl

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The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Goldman Sachs’ second-quarter showing may for once leave it wishing it was a sprawling mega-bank. The Wall Street firm put in a far worse showing than rivals in fixed-income, currencies and commodities trading, known as FICC, traditionally its revenue powerhouse. Broader institutions like Citigroup, Bank of America and JPMorgan benefit from the cushion provided by sleepier but consistent businesses like treasury services and commercial banking and lending.

Jul 16, 2015
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Goldman for once may miss mega-bank sprawl

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The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Goldman Sachs’ second-quarter showing may for once leave it wishing it was a sprawling mega-bank. The Wall Street firm put in a far worse showing than rivals in fixed-income, currencies and commodities trading, known as FICC, traditionally its revenue powerhouse. Broader institutions like Citigroup, Bank of America and JPMorgan benefit from the cushion provided by sleepier but consistent businesses like treasury services and commercial banking and lending.

Jul 15, 2015
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BofA earnings best in years but tougher task ahead

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The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Bank of America’s best quarterly earnings in years highlight the tougher task ahead. The lender cranked out a profit available to shareholders of $5 billion in the three months to June as costs hit their lowest level since the end of 2008. Return on equity remains subpar, though. Core earnings would need to be almost 40 percent higher for the bank to beat its cost of capital.

Jul 15, 2015
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BofA earnings best in years but tougher task ahead

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The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Bank of America’s best quarterly earnings in years highlight the tougher task ahead. The lender cranked out a profit available to shareholders of $5 billion in the three months to June as costs hit their lowest level since the end of 2008. Return on equity remains subpar, though. Core earnings would need to be almost 40 percent higher for the bank to beat its cost of capital.

Jul 14, 2015
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U.S. bank bosses get greedy in latest merger

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The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

The bosses at U.S. lender BB&T have gotten greedy. The Federal Reserve last week approved the North Carolina-based bank’s $2.5 billion purchase of Susquehanna Bancshares, one of the industry’s biggest transactions in years. Other lenders may be relieved to see the deal pipeline flowing again. The buyer’s top brass, though, will share an undeserved $2.5 mln bonus, a blot on otherwise good news.

Jul 14, 2015
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U.S. bank bosses get greedy in latest merger

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The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

The bosses at U.S. lender BB&T have gotten greedy. The Federal Reserve last week approved the North Carolina-based bank’s $2.5 billion purchase of Susquehanna Bancshares, one of the industry’s biggest transactions in years. Other lenders may be relieved to see the deal pipeline flowing again. The buyer’s top brass, though, will share an undeserved $2.5 mln bonus, a blot on otherwise good news.

Jul 13, 2015

Breakingviews-U.S. bank bosses get greedy in latest merger

By Antony Currie

NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) – The bosses at U.S. lender
BB&T have gotten greedy. The Federal Reserve last week
approved the North Carolina-based bank’s $2.5 billion purchase
of Susquehanna Bancshares, one of the industry’s
biggest transactions in years. Other lenders may be relieved to
see the deal pipeline flowing again. The buyer’s top brass,
though, will share an undeserved $2.5 mln bonus, a blot on
otherwise good news.

It’s a chief executive’s job to consider deals that might
increase shareholder value, and he or she shouldn’t get anything
extra for doing it. If an acquisition turns out well, then
return on assets and on equity should both improve, along with
the share price, and the boss’ pay should rise accordingly.

Jul 8, 2015
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NYSE, United give glimpse of connectivity’s future

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The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

“Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. Three times, it’s enemy action,” said Auric Goldfinger in Ian Fleming’s seventh James Bond novel. That’s one possible response to computer outages at United Airlines, the New York Stock Exchange and the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday. Another is that they’re the first sign of a zombie apocalypse. Far more likely is that bad luck just happened to strike these companies on the same day.

    • About Antony

      "Antony Currie has more than a decade of experience as a financial journalist, having worked with Euromoney since 1996, most recently as a U.S. editor. He has worked on assignments in the major financial centers of Europe and the U.S. and written stories on capital markets, global economies and the investment banking industry. He holds a bachelor's degree in German language and literature and a master's degree in politics and international relations from the University of Bristol."
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