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May 28, 2012

Nomura insider probe spotlights common Japan practice

TOKYO, May 28 (Reuters) – The escalating probe into insider
trading at Nomura highlights one of the worst-kept secrets in
the Japan market: for years brokers have fed clients
confidential information on stock offerings with little fear of
a regulatory crackdown.

The spotlight is on Nomura after the emergence this weekend
of a second case in which sources say an employee at the broker
told a fund manager about a share offering before it was made
public, giving its client an unfair advantage to unload those
shares.

Apr 27, 2012

Nomura Q4 net jumps 86 pct, beats view on market boost

TOKYO, April 27 (Reuters) – Nomura Holdings posted
on Friday a better-than-expected 86 percent jump in
fourth-quarter profit on a pick-up in Japanese stocks and mutual
fund sales, while cost cuts and overseas deals lay the
foundation for an expected jump in profitability this year.

The second straight quarterly profit from Japan’s top
investment bank shows it has stabilised operations after a rocky
2011 when tough conditions prompted Nomura to launch a $1.2
billion cost-cutting plan and Moody’s to cut its credit rating
to one notch above junk.

Apr 26, 2012

Nomura to post Q4 profit, deals show headway overseas

TOKYO, April 27 (Reuters) – Nomura Holdings is
expected to post on Friday a second straight quarterly profit
and highlight a handful of overseas deals that signal progress
in its strategy to expand its business beyond the home market.

Japan’s top investment bank remains vulnerable to a further
pullback in the Nikkei stock average, which has slipped 5
percent since the start of April, and faces the risk of
sanctions in an ongoing insider-trading probe.

Apr 25, 2012

Japan regulator escalates Nomura insider probe

TOKYO, April 25 (Reuters) – Japan’s market regulator has
sent investigators to the Tokyo offices of Nomura Holdings
in an escalation of its probe into the broker’s
suspected involvement in leaking inside information, sources
with knowledge of the matter said.

The Securities and Exchange Surveillance Commission (SESC)
has been investigating Nomura on a voluntary basis as part of an
industry-wide probe into insider trading in Japan around a
string of public stock offerings in 2009 and 2010.

Apr 24, 2012

Japan must create new tech champions with M&A strategy

TOKYO, April 25 (Reuters) – Twice during the two years it
took to forge a three-way merger of small display makers in
Japan, investment banker Fumiaki Sato had to talk a company back
to the negotiating table with a blunt message: merge or die.

Hitachi Ltd (6501.T: Quote, Profile, Research) flirted with an alliance with Taiwan’s
Hon Hai Precision Industry (2317.TW: Quote, Profile, Research) before returning to talks
that culminated in this month’s merger of the small and
medium-sized LCD operations of Hitachi, Sony Corp (6758.T: Quote, Profile, Research) and
Toshiba Corp (6502.T: Quote, Profile, Research) into Japan Display.
It was Samsung Electronics’ (005930.KS: Quote, Profile, Research) leap to the next
generation of production technology for mobile display that
finally convinced one of the other companies to return to the
talks, said Sato, a former star technology analyst who now has
his own investment bank. He declined to say which of the other
two companies it was.
“Once information about Samsung started to spread, people in
the company got worried,” Sato told Reuters in a recent
interview. Samsung in 2010 had come out with a new display
screen for mobile devices that was destined to make its Galaxy
smartphone a hit.

Apr 18, 2012

American CEO quits Nippon Sheet after “disagreements”

TOKYO (Reuters) – The American president and chief executive of Nippon Sheet Glass Co Ltd (5202.T: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) quit the company after less than two years in the post following “fundamental disagreements” with the board over strategy, chairman Katsuji Fujimoto said on Wednesday.

The resignation of Craig Naylor leaves Carlos Ghosn, the chief executive of Nissan Motor Co (7201.T: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), as the only remaining non-Japanese CEO of a major Japanese company. Howard Stringer stepped aside as CEO of Sony Corp (6758.T: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) this month.

Apr 11, 2012

Proxy firms oppose Olympus directors, highlighting rift

TOKYO, April 11 (Reuters) – A second global shareholder
advisory firm has come out in opposition to key board nominees
at Olympus Corp, highlighting a rift between the
scandal-tainted Japanese company and foreign investors that is
likely to persist after the expected approval of a new
management team next week.

Glass Lewis has recommended investors reject seven of 11
proposed directors, including nominee president Hiroyuki Sasa,
in a vote at an extraordinary shareholder meeting on April 20,
an official at the advisory firm told Reuters on Wednesday.

Mar 29, 2012

JAL to tap Qantas, other Oneworld partners for 3 billion pounds IPO – sources

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan Airlines is planning to tap Australia’s Qantas Airways (QAN.AX: Quote, Profile, Research), British Airways’ owner IAG (ICAG.L: Quote, Profile, Research) and other members of the Oneworld alliance as investors in an initial public offering expected to be worth at least $6 billion (3 billion pounds), three people with knowledge of the carrier’s strategy said.

Japan Airlines (JAL) is planning to raise a minimum of 500 billion yen ($6.03 billion) in a relisting of its shares in Tokyo that could come as early as September, sources have told Reuters. The IPO would allow a state-backed fund to recoup the 350 billion yen it injected into the company after its bankruptcy in 2010.

Mar 29, 2012

JAL to tap Qantas, other Oneworld partners for $6 billion IPO: sources

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan Airlines is planning to tap Australia’s Qantas Airways (QAN.AX: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), British Airways’ owner IAG (ICAG.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and other members of the Oneworld alliance as possible investors in an initial public offering expected to be worth at least $6 billion, three people with knowledge of the Japanese carrier’s strategy said.

Japan Airlines (JAL) is planning to raise a minimum of 500 billion yen ($6.03 billion) ahead of a relisting of its shares in Tokyo as early as September, sources have told Reuters. The IPO would allow a state-backed fund to recoup the 350 billion yen it injected into the company after its bankruptcy in 2010.

Mar 27, 2012

TSE calls for new rules to prevent insider trading

TOKYO, March 27 (Reuters) – The head of the Tokyo Stock
Exchange said an insider trading case unveiled by authorities
last week was a blow to the reputation of Japan’s capital
markets and called for tougher rules to combat the problem.

“For this to happen as Japan touts its reputation globally
as a trustworthy market, a market in Asia with a 130-year
history and a strong set of rules … it’s a real shame,” said
Atsushi Saito, CEO of the exchange.