Oct 28, 2013 03:44 UTC

One idea Samsung could safely copy from Apple

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By Una Galani

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

Here’s one idea that Samsung could safely copy from Apple. As a proportion of its $221 billion market capitalization, the South Korean giant’s near $40 billion cash pile is almost as big as that of its U.S. arch rival. With reserves accumulating fast, it can afford to mimic Apple by giving more to investors.

Oct 25, 2013 18:59 UTC

Twitter avoids Facebook IPO overreach – thus far

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

Twitter seems to be avoiding Facebook’s overreach – so far. The microblogging site’s provisional pricing for its initial public offering is $17 to $20 a share. Calculations by Breakingviews suggest that’s modest by the metrics available, though without profit these require a leap of faith. At least Twitter seems to be avoiding the premature heights of Facebook’s flawed debut last year.

Oct 24, 2013 19:22 UTC

Activist bet on Evercore would have beaten Lazard

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

Nelson Peltz must be happy with his stake in Lazard. The activist investor jumped into the stock early last year. Since then, Lazard’s stock has gone up 50 percent and its third-quarter results on Thursday show the firm is on track. There’s just one wrinkle for Peltz: he would have done even better, doubling his money, owning smaller advisory outfit Evercore.

Oct 24, 2013 14:30 UTC

Credit Suisse shoved into another restructuring

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By Dominic Elliott

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

When Credit Suisse decided to shrink its fixed income business, many thought it wasn’t enough. They were right. After cutting a third of its products since 2009, the Swiss bank is renewing the assault.

Oct 24, 2013 08:14 UTC

China bank IPO shows rewards of financial alchemy

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By John Foley 

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

Financial innovation is paying off for Bank of Chongqing, a small Chinese lender preparing for a $2 billion stock market listing in Hong Kong. What sets the bank apart isn’t its enviable 32 percent return on equity, but its copious use of what might be China’s most baffling securities.

Oct 23, 2013 21:10 UTC

Big U.S. bank fines far more art than science

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

The biggest U.S. bank fines involve far more art than science. In theory there are defined, if loose, legal criteria for penalties. But enormous settlements – like the possible $13 billion bite out of JPMorgan – can seem pulled from thin air. While courts occasionally run the rule over the numbers, regulators’ zeal and public outrage outweigh the logic.

Oct 23, 2013 16:13 UTC

Eight questions for three Buffetts

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

Warren Buffett’s son, Howard Graham, and his grandson, Howard Warren, have written a new book, “Forty Chances: Finding Hope in a Hungry World,” which chronicles their philanthropic work on hunger, farming and poverty around the world. This is an edited transcript of the discussion with the three men.

Oct 23, 2013 04:13 UTC

Li Ka-shing still has what investors want

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By Una Galani

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

Li Ka-shing may be an octogenarian but he still knows when to buy and sell. An analysis of 16 listed parts of the Hong Kong tycoon’s telecoms-to-energy empire, with a combined market capitalization of more than $170 billion, shows a mixed record of delivering shareholder returns. Yet Li’s flagship holding companies have matched or beaten the market over the past two and five years. For investors, it pays to invest as close as possible to the man himself.

Oct 22, 2013 18:32 UTC

Netflix could turn troublesome euphoria into useful cash

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By Robert Cyran
Thea author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Netflix stock has quadrupled since January. Chief Executive Reed Hastings warns that momentum investors have become too euphoric. Diluting the punchbowl by issuing more equity is a better way to calm this rowdy party – and answer doubts about the online video company’s balance sheet.

Oct 22, 2013 04:07 UTC

Alibaba creative governance should come at a cost

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By John Foley

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

New York and Hong Kong differ on shareholder democracy. Alibaba, China’s biggest e-commerce company, has received approval from U.S. stock exchanges to let a partnership of senior executives nominate most of its directors. Hong Kong rebuffed the idea on principle. Investors in a future initial public offering must now decide what that principle is worth.