Breakingviews

Breakdown: The dismal art of forecasting sterling

October 14, 2016

Most economists agree the pound has further to fall, but there is a wide range of views on how far. Long-term forecasts are an unfortunate necessity, but they are stab in the dark when it comes to a currency that is more in the thrall of politics than economics.

Review: India’s flashier tycoons are best avoided

October 14, 2016

In a country full of colourful businessmen, shareholders gain most from backing introverts. Saurabh Mukherjea’s "The Unusual Billionaires" singles out those behind the 1 pct of Indian firms that generate superior returns. It's a reminder that crony capitalism no longer pays.

from Viewsroom:

Viewsroom: Samsung’s fiery future

October 13, 2016

Cancelling production of its self-combusting Note 7 smartphone puts the company's reputation as well as $17 bln or more at risk. Cities, businesses and investors are putting Trump and Clinton to shame on climate change. Plus: Brexit politics get shaken up by the pound's decline.

A hands-off CBS-Viacom tie-up might have a chance

October 13, 2016

The Redstones want to crunch their two media companies back into a $40 bln combo with CBS boss Les Moonves at the helm. His ability to turn around the ailing Viacom piece may hinge on whether he can successfully negotiate a meddle-free policy from the controlling shareholders.

America’s soft power gets welcome lift from Dylan

By Rob Cox
October 13, 2016

The Swedish Academy awarded the singer-songwriter the Nobel Prize for Literature. It's a reminder to an electorate enduring perhaps the tawdriest, most divisive presidential campaign ever that a nation's strengths are not confined to its politics or economic might.

Cox: Amsterdam has first-world financial dilemma

By Rob Cox
October 13, 2016

The city that invented the stock exchange and multinational may be Europe's ideal post-Brexit banking hub. Beyond fears about traders' Ferraris clogging bike lanes, however, Amsterdammers will need to overcome a bonus cap. This is where populism may win out over Dutch pragmatism.

British retailers have leverage over Unilever

October 13, 2016

The maker of Dove soap wants supermarkets like Tesco to pay more for its goods as the pound weakens. They can’t easily pass that cost on to shoppers. Grocers have two reasons to play tough: Unilever's 15 pct operating margin, and their access to the consumer.

Kirin finds crafty M&A distraction in Brooklyn

October 13, 2016

The Tokyo group is buying nearly a quarter of Brooklyn Brewery. Kirin faces structural and strategic issues. But this small acquisition, which follows some duff deal-making, should help keep Kirin on top of the craft-beer revolution as it belatedly washes over Japan.

Stumpf exit necessary but not quite sufficient

October 12, 2016

The Wells Fargo CEO's "retirement" was inevitable, though it came quickly. It clears the way for his successor to fix the culture that led to millions of fake accounts being opened. Along with the $228 bln lender's board, veteran Tim Sloan has to show he can break with the past.

Deutsche gets cautious vote of creditor confidence

October 12, 2016

The German bank is issuing expensive debt. That shows it can access markets, despite a feared $14 billion U.S. fine. It's less powerful a signal than buying it back, as Deutsche Bank did in February, but at least shows investors don't fear losses that could eat into senior debt.