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A “Wynning” strategy of betting on VIPs

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Wynn Macau Top-tier casino operator Wynn has always bet on VIP gamblers. Now it is adopting the same approach with its stock market flotation. Wynn is trying to trump half a dozen recent poor Hong Kong market debuts by shunning fickle retail investors and handpicking money managers who are likely to stay the distance. It remains to be seen whether this strategy can help justify its valuation premium.

Most Hong Kong retail investors sell their shares on the first day of trading for a quick profit. By putting 90 percent of the shares in the hands of institutional buyers, Wynn is aiming to avoid the hit when its shares start trading on Friday.

That’s probably why the stock has not fallen in grey market trading, even though it was priced at HK$10.08, at the top end of the HK$8.52-$10.08 range.

Wynn has specifically obtained a waiver from the Hong Kong stock market to prevent retail investors from holding more than 30 percent of the total shares offered. But this effort turned out to be unnecessary, as private investors are simply not interested.

China might keep the weakest bank all to itself

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Faced with a backlash against foreign investors, Beijing may
be tempted to offer shares in the last of its big four banks to
a domestic audience.

That decision may reflect China’s new found confidence in
the wake of the credit crisis. But it also means Chinese investors
will retain full responsibility for the country’s weakest bank.

How global cities rank after the financial crisis

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London bus passes Swiss Re Gherkin building Reuters photoLondon, once one of the world’s most expensive cities, now ranks in the middle of the pack of European cities in terms of the cost of living. The sharp drop in the value of British pound largely is to blame for the decline of London’s ranking from the second priciest city three years ago to No. 22, according to a study of comparative purchasing power by UBS of 73 cities around the globe.

New York, Oslo and Geneva now have the highest living expenses in the world.  Excluding rent and energy, Oslo, Zurich and Copenhagen have the highest prices. Offsetting those costs, these cities also rank as having some of the highest gross wages in the world. Zurich, the headquarters of UBS, tops the scale in terms of gross wages, but also enjoys relatively low tax rates.

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