Aug 1, 2013 16:41 UTC

Shell faces reality: it’s not about the barrels

Photo

By Kevin Allison

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

Disappointing results at Royal Dutch Shell partly reflect an outdated way of thinking. Oil majors have long obsessed simultaneously about reserve replacement, production growth and profit. The Anglo-Dutch energy giant’s decision to ditch its production goals shows it’s wising up.

Jul 31, 2013 13:31 UTC

BNP’s sturdy model will help German push

Photo

By Pierre Briançon

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

Even the mighty are shaken. The universal banking model of BNP Paribas helped it cushion the blow in the second quarter, but a near-40 percent year-on-year drop in corporate and investment banking pre-tax profit shows it is as vulnerable as others to fickle markets and depressed economies. This may be one of the reasons why it is planning a major push into Germany.

Jul 30, 2013 15:16 UTC

Barclays’ rights issue is worth supporting – just

Photo

By George Hay

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

Barclays’ 5.8 billion pound rights issue is just about worth supporting. Just six months after a strategic revamp, the UK bank’s investors are facing a cash call to help address an unexpected 12.8 billion pound capital hole. They should stick around.

Jul 29, 2013 03:22 UTC

Alibaba may be worth $100 bln – but not to Yahoo

Photo

By John Foley

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

Alibaba is Yahoo’s best investment, and its most frustrating problem. The U.S. Internet group’s 24 percent stake in China’s biggest online retailer is probably worth more than Yahoo’s entire booked assets of $16 billion. But a future initial public offering, in which Yahoo has promised to sell half its shares, may deliver much less. That’s because Alibaba holds most of the cards.

COMMENT

Yahoo should just dividend its Alibaba shares out to its present shareholders and forget a secondary offering.

Posted by Miner49er | Report as abusive
Jul 25, 2013 09:26 UTC

Baidu digs deeper trench in China’s mobile wars

Photo

By Robyn Mak and John Foley

(The authors are Reuters Breakingviews columnists. The opinions expressed are their own)

Baidu is digging itself a deep trench in China’s mobile wars. The country’s biggest search engine by user traffic reported a 39 percent increase in revenue for the second quarter of 2013 compared to the same period in 2012. Mobile revenue hit over ten percent of total for the first time. Google and Facebook have shown how heavy investments can pay off over time. Yet the cost is high and margins get squeezed. In China, competitive lines are more blurred. Returns may be even longer in coming.

Jul 24, 2013 08:00 UTC

Apple overcomes China blues for now

Photo

By Robert Cyran

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

Apple has overcome its China blues for now. One of the tech giant’s most reliable engines for growth has been booming Chinese demand. It flamed out during the quarter ended June 29, however, with revenue from the Middle Kingdom shrinking 14 percent. Solid sales in the larger U.S. market helped compensate, leaving revenue flat compared with the same period last year at $35 billion. But the performance shows just how badly Apple needs new products if it wants to shine again.

Jul 18, 2013 05:36 UTC

Vietnam is back in the game for buyout firms

Photo

By Andy Mukherjee

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

As one of the world’s few remaining communist states, Vietnam’s relationship with foreign capitalists is complex. That hasn’t stopped private equity group Warburg Pincus closing the first tranche of a $200 million investment in the country’s largest mall owner. It’s early days, but for global investors Vietnam may be back in the game.

Jul 12, 2013 17:30 UTC

Fruity American M&A saga may be about to ripen

Photo

By Jeffrey Goldfarb

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

An epic American M&A saga may be about to come full circle. Nearly 25 years after it was carved up in a landmark deal, much of fruit group Del Monte could be put back together. Along the way, the U.S. food giant has become an enormous part of Wall Street – and even City of London – lore. It’s practically a textbook unto itself for merger lawyers and bankers.

COMMENT

As soon as I saw the word “epic” in your story I quit reading. Please stop the use of this ridiculous word.

Posted by history10 | Report as abusive
Jul 11, 2013 11:45 UTC

Dash from emerging to developed markets hits new risks

Photo

By Ian Campbell

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

Capital glut has become capital flight in emerging markets. Stock markets in developed economies may be the beneficiaries for now. But the switch merely exchanges one set of risks for another.

Jul 5, 2013 18:56 UTC

How regulators can restore trust in bank capital

Photo

By George Hay

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

The Basel Committee just dealt another blow to the self-assessment of banking risk. This powerful group of global supervisors published new evidence on July 5 unmasking shortcomings in the models that tell lenders how much capital they need. For fans of the status quo, it makes gory reading.