Jun 26, 2014 11:51 UTC
Edward Hadas

Biggest risk of geopolitics is as a distraction

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By Edward Hadas

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

Investors consider geopolitics the most important risk to financial markets over the next year. That judgment, reported in a Barclays survey this week, shows people taking greater cues from headlines than numbers.

Jun 25, 2014 19:04 UTC

Aereo is dead, long live TV disruption

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By Reynolds Holding

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

Aereo is dead, long live television disruption. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Wednesday that the streaming startup backed by entertainment mogul Barry Diller violates copyright law. Legal loopholes abound, however, and investors and viewers will still reward those who find ways to exploit them. The likes of broadcasters CBS and Disney-owned ABC can’t afford to waste time celebrating.

Jun 24, 2014 19:14 UTC

Next stop: Siemens-Alstom train merger

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By Olaf Storbeck

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

Once the dust settles over the Alstom bidding war, Siemens and its French rival may want to revisit the most compelling aspect of the German company’s losing bid: a merger of both groups’ train-making units that would create the train equivalent of Airbus, the European aircraft maker.

Jun 24, 2014 16:08 UTC

Hollywood’s hopes in China rest on Youku

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By Rob Cox

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

Look around the subway in Beijing or Shanghai and maybe nine of 10 passengers are watching videos on their mobile devices. Chances are most of them are watching content delivered to them by Youku Tudou. The country’s leading internet television operator streams 400 million videos a day. In that sense, Youku is Netflix and YouTube – plus Comcast and Liberty Media – stuffed into one dumpling. It is also the nexus for Hollywood’s high hopes in the Middle Kingdom.

Jun 24, 2014 08:47 UTC

Woolworths pays too-steep ransom in Aussie battle

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By Una Galani

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

Woolworths is paying too steep a ransom in its retail battle. The South African group is buying billionaire Solomon Lew’s stake in an Australian unit in an attempt to secure the billionaire’s support in its A$2.1 billion ($2 billion) takeover of upmarket department store chain David Jones. The side deal raises the effective takeover premium – and piles pressure on Woolworths to realise synergies.

Jun 23, 2014 18:38 UTC

Oracle deal provides partly cloudy forecast

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By Kevin Allison

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

Oracle’s $5.3 billion deal for Micros Systems provides a cloudy forecast for shareholders in the database giant. Even if it’s the start of a new deal binge by Chief Executive Larry Ellison – which is possible – it’s not at a crazy valuation. But longtime partner Micros is more of an add-on than a way to supercharge Oracle’s effort in the cloud.

Jun 23, 2014 06:29 UTC

Alibaba is case study in U.S.-China legal gulf

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By Richard Beales

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

Alibaba’s coming U.S. initial public offering will probably value the Chinese e-commerce firm at more than $100 billion. But will shareholders actually own the business? That’s the timely concern raised by a U.S. congressional commission. Lack of clarity in PRC law is mainly to blame.

Jun 20, 2014 18:14 UTC

GE scores a Pyrrhic victory in France

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By Quentin Webb

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

There’s a paradox in General Electric’s French triumph. The U.S. conglomerate is finally getting Alstom’s energy businesses, having seen off German nemesis Siemens and reached an accommodation with a hostile French government. Yet some other players won clearer victories.

Jun 19, 2014 21:26 UTC

Supremes ride shotgun with Tesla down open road

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By Reynolds Holding

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

The U.S. Supreme Court is riding shotgun with Tesla Motors down the open road. The top U.S. tribunal unanimously ruled on Thursday that abstract ideas, even if run through a computer, can be freely adopted. Elon Musk, meanwhile, last week opened up the technology from his electric carmaker. Both decisions spread an important message to the vicious world of patent fighting: Share, don’t hoard.

Jun 19, 2014 06:50 UTC

Tranquil markets may lead emerging nations astray

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By Andy Mukherjee 

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

The return of calm to global markets is not an unalloyed blessing for the developing world. In the year since investors freaked out about rising U.S. interest rates, JPMorgan’s emerging markets bond index has recovered almost all of its losses. That could tempt developing economies to abuse easy money and blow domestic asset bubbles.