Nov 28, 2013 08:08 UTC

Giant Interactive’s $2.9 bln buyout hard to resist

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By Una Galani

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

Giant Interactive’s $2.9 billion buyout is hard to resist. Chairman Shi Yuzhu is leading a consortium with Baring Private Equity Asia to take the U.S-listed Chinese computer gaming group private. At almost 13 times this year’s earnings, the group’s offer to buy the 53 percent that it doesn’t already own is a chunky premium to peers. Besides, independent investors have few alternatives.

Nov 27, 2013 17:31 UTC

Give thanks for the pope’s anti-free market views

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

Wall Street bigwigs often lean economically right and socially left. In what looks like a manifesto for his papacy, Pope Francis takes the opposite stance. He might not, however, object to the relatively uncommercialized American Thanksgiving holiday. And over their turkey on Thursday, the rich might ponder a financial system that the pope says “rules rather than serves.”

COMMENT

Its also interesting to me how the IMPROVING plight of the poor and hungry in the world can be so thoroughly ignored by the Church, the other representative NGO’s, and the media.

The absolute numbers and percentages of humans living in abject poverty, and living with food insecurity have dropped significantly since the 1970′s. The number of people with a living wage, adequate food, clean water, and basic medical services has RISEN significantly — in most cases thanks to the largesse of free-enterprise and its benefactors.

There is still work to do, but as the presumed leader of the Catholic church once declared to one of his female followers, “The poor you’ll have with you always.”

Meanwhile, if one is in the business of selling guilt and despair as ‘free-market’ commodities (as are the Church, the NGO’s, and the media) it’s expedient to ignore the numbers and the improvements so that the soft intellect of their followers (and contributors) continue to obsess on the decreasing need as though it were at crisis proportion still.

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Nov 27, 2013 03:11 UTC

How Cinda squares China’s debt triangles

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By John Foley

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

China Cinda has spotted a clever arbitrage. The Chinese “bad bank”, which is revving up for a Hong Kong initial public offering (IPO), has recently been doing brisk business by borrowing cheaply from other banks and using those funds to buy up companies’ short-term loans to each other. In doing so, it has found a way to square China’s dreaded “debt triangles”.

Nov 25, 2013 15:17 UTC

Sub-zero ECB rates could be made to work

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By Swaha Pattanaik

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

The European Central Bank has discussed charging lenders for the privilege of putting money on deposit. It would be a radical move, enacted through negative interest rates, aiming to encourage banks to lend to the real economy. But such a policy should be embraced with care.

Nov 25, 2013 07:03 UTC

Iran deal offers the world a ray of hope

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By Una Galani

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

Iran’s nuclear deal offers the world a ray of hope. It won’t be easy to turn the agreement to curb Tehran’s nuclear activities from a six-month accord into a lasting solution that assures the world the country’s nuclear programme is peaceful. But the resulting diplomatic goodwill should make it harder to go backwards.

Nov 22, 2013 03:15 UTC

Global deflation – not quite Marx’s prophecy

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By Andy Mukherjee

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

Shares of profits in national incomes are soaring; those of wages are falling. It’s a recipe for corrosive and creeping deflation.

Nov 21, 2013 16:41 UTC

Gold hasn’t melted down to its base yet

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By Ian Campbell

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

Gold’s meltdown is not over. Expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve will scale back stimulus have pushed the precious metal’s price down to just under $1,250 per ounce – 35 percent below its 2011 peak. When the Fed actually starts tapering its bond purchases, investors will keep fleeing. That will leave the price of bullion relying heavily on demand from the jewellery trade.

Nov 21, 2013 16:35 UTC

Bitcoin attention may flip its investor base

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By Daniel Indiviglio
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.
All the official attention being garnered by bitcoin could flip its investor base. Congressional hearings held this week confer a certain sort of legitimacy on the shadowy but high-flying virtual currency. Ardent inflationista and libertarian bitcoin backers won’t much like the arrival of rules and regulations. They could, however, inadvertently attract the masses.

Bitcoin was created as a means of digital payment. Initially, a handful of programmers collected the nerd cash for solving mathematical problems related to network stability and security. Interest now extends far beyond young basement dwellers.

Nov 21, 2013 01:54 UTC

Asia’s fear of Fed is now infecting more economies

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By Andy Mukherjee

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

After a rough summer, Asian markets are calm once again. But beneath the surface, the fear of what the Federal Reserve may do next is beginning to spread beyond India and Indonesia.

COMMENT

Asian countries can reduce their Treasuries holdings to mitigate the Fed tapering exercise.

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Nov 20, 2013 11:39 UTC

Equity optimists may fast create a crowded trade

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By Swaha Pattanaik

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

Many large institutional asset managers expect developed stocks to march higher next year. They predict that companies will ramp up capital expenditure and fiscal policy will become less restrictive. That may well happen. The risk is that too much money is chasing the same idea. Crowded trades are rarely safe bets.