Insight and investigations from our expert reporters
Here’s what Nick Carey had to say today about his special report “Stuck between the Tea Party and a hard place.”
Not long after the battle over the 2011 fiscal budget in Washington ended in mid-April, I received a few emails from Tea Party groups expressing frustration with the apparent failure by the Republican Party establishment to follow through on promises that they would cut spending in that budget by $100 billion.
Today’s special report looks at U.S.-China M&A activity – or rather the lack of it. Drawing on previously unpublished State Department cables, the report examines how the failed Unocal bid and other high profile aborted transactions made it difficult for companies in China and the United States to do deals with one another.
Last year, U.S. companies in China struck dozens of small deals but they were collectively worth just $3.2 billion, while Chinese companies spent only $3 billion on U.S. acquisitions, Thomson Reuters data shows. That is a remarkably trivial amount given the two nation’s deepening economic relations: China is one of America’s top creditors and the U.S. is by far China’s largest export market.
Yinka Adegoke delves into what happened at Myspace in his special report today: “How News Corp got lost in Myspace.”
Weak technology, management in-fighting and a rival called Facebook led to the rapid decline of the once dominant social network.
Mark Egan’s special report “Dumping print, NY publisher bets the ranch on apps” focuses on one man who believes the end has come for printed books.
Since 1980, Nicholas Callaway has made the finest of design-driven books, building a publishing house and his fortune on memorable children’s stories and on volumes known for the fidelity of their reproductions of great art. But the quality of paper, ink and binding mean nothing to him now.
Could you imagine General Electric operating for six months without knowing how much money it has to spend? That’s the situation the U.S. government finds itself in as Congress still hasn’t settled on a budget for the fiscal year that started last October.
While Republicans and Democrats argue over $50 billion in proposed cuts, the effects of the stalemate are being felt around the globe. Airport control towers go unstaffed, scientific research goes unfunded and fighter jets are grounded.
We teamed up with Matt Isaacs and the Investigative Reporting Program at U.C. Berkeley for a special report last week on the murky world of Macau casinos.
“The Macau Connection” focused on Las Vegas Sands, which is being sued by the former CEO of its China division.
By Ben Berkowitz
Diplomats, consultants and analysts have plenty of questions about Chinese car maker BYD and its growth tactics, but there’s one thing no one can question: BYD shares have made a lot of people a lot of money in recent years.
Since Warren Buffett invested in the company at the depths of the financial crisis in September 2008, BYD shares are up nearly 300 percent. (And that’s after a sharp decline over the last 16 months, as the company delayed its American debut and experienced sliding sales domestically). Compare that with Ford, up about 170 percent over the same period – and Toyota, which has lost more than a fifth of its value. At one point, BYD shares were so strong that its chairman, Wang Chuanfu, was China’s richest man.
By Ben Berkovitz
Diplomacy is a complex thing, and it gets even more complicated when diplomats are trying to act as salesmen.
A series of State Department cables, obtained by WikiLeaks and provided to Reuters by a third party, demonstrates just how intertwined American political and commercial interests really are. (See special report “Weapons, frozen chicken, and the art of diplomacy“)
By Matthew Goldstein
All too often the bigger an investment fund gets, the more difficult it is to continue to generate blowout returns.
Maybe the best example of a fund getting so popular and ultimately unwieldy is Fidelity’s Magellan fund. One has to wonder if on a smaller scale, the same phenomena is happening to Steven Cohen’s SAC Capital Advisors.