Jun 18, 2014 18:06 UTC

Elon Musk applies his magic touch to M&A

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By Christopher Swann

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

Elon Musk is applying his magic touch to M&A. A $350 million acquisition of solar panel maker Silevo added $900 million to the market value of SolarCity, where the inventor and entrepreneur is chairman and biggest shareholder. It’s an investment in an efficient technology and a hedge against rising import tariffs. Manufacturing, however, is the riskiest part of solar, and Musk is a more proven builder than buyer.

Jun 17, 2014 17:38 UTC

Medtronic-Covidien is blast from M&A advisory past

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By Antony Currie

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

Investment bankers had a rude awakening over the weekend. A mega-merger like the $43 billion cash and stock tie-up Medtronic and Covidien announced on Sunday often provides a feast for a raft of advisory firms. Not this time. The two medical devices companies are only using one each.

Jun 17, 2014 13:58 UTC

China Macau tolerance won’t last forever

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By Rob Cox

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

Spreadsheets with astonishing forecasts can only tell so much about China’s economic miracle. The sole path to believing, or at least comprehending, the scale of the country’s development is to see it. And so it is with any attempt to grasp Macau’s transformation from a Portuguese trading outpost to the Middle Kingdom’s gambling and entertainment hub.

Jun 16, 2014 21:12 UTC

Morgan Stanley email shame begs a tech solution

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By Jeffrey Goldfarb

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

Morgan Stanley’s email shame should bring Silicon Valley and Wall Street closer together. Messages sent by the bank’s head of M&A to Allergan look bad now that Morgan Stanley is working for hostile suitor Valeant Pharmaceuticals International. The episode suggests there’s a market for a corporate Snapchat.

COMMENT

Is this a surprise. This industry is riddled with bad, practises, woeful management, and downright thieves. The very nature of the business attracts the worst in our society whose sole interest is personal enrichment , stroking their inflated egos, and boosting their “status in society”. Pond life at its worst. Long jail sentences and licensing is required to deter these thieves.

Posted by Olduvai | Report as abusive
Jun 16, 2014 17:10 UTC

Medtronic-Covidien deal is marriage of convenience

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By Jeffrey Goldfarb and Robert Cyran

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

The marriage of Medtronic and Covidien looks to be one of convenience. The $42.9 billion deal includes a premium that exceeds the estimated cost savings. Stents and sutures aren’t an obvious fit. And moving Medtronic’s headquarters from Minneapolis to Covidien’s Dublin base won’t obviously cut the U.S. company’s tax bill. Freeing up overseas cash is too shallow a reason to tie the knot.

Jun 13, 2014 19:17 UTC

Priceline’s OpenTable buy is costly appetizer

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By Robert Cyran

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

Priceline definitely didn’t pick the budget option in its own search for expansion. The online travel outfit is paying a 46 percent premium – $2.6 billion in cash – to snag OpenTable, the listed restaurant reservation site. Each helps small businesses and customers find each other. But the tariff only makes sense if Priceline can plug many more of both into OpenTable worldwide.

Jun 13, 2014 14:27 UTC

Review: “House of Debt” diagnosis beats remedies

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By Martin Hutchinson

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

Atif Mian and Amir Sufi are better at diagnosis than cure. In their book, “House of Debt: How They (and You) Caused the Great Recession, and How We Can Prevent It from Happening Again,” the two professors make a compelling case that excess consumer debt caused the severity of the U.S. Great Recession. Unfortunately their mortgage bailout proposal would worsen future such problems. Another idea, shared value mortgages, might work partially – but tighter monetary policy would work better still.

Jun 12, 2014 15:39 UTC

Brazil’s companies need soccer team’s global clout

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By Dominic Elliott

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

Brazil’s corporate squad pales beside its soccer stars. The country’s national football side has unquestioned world-class quality in almost every position on the pitch. Yet if there were a World Cup for businesses, Brazil would struggle to get past the group stage.

Jun 12, 2014 13:07 UTC

Harvard could get smarter about its endowment

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By Richard Beales

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

Harvard University could get smarter about its $33 billion endowment. Jane Mendillo, who has managed the Ivy League university’s portfolio for six years, is leaving at the end of 2014. Her predecessor is partly to blame for crisis losses, but Harvard nevertheless seems to have overpaid for mediocre returns.

Jun 11, 2014 18:23 UTC

Siemens needs more than Mitsubishi to win Alstom

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By Olaf Storbeck

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

Siemens is smart to team up with Japanese engineering peer Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in a potential bid for Alstom’s power assets. But this probably won’t be enough for the German group to see off rival interest from America’s General Electric.