Unstructured Finance

Deals wrap: RBC offloads U.S. assets

PNC Financial Services Group will buy Royal Bank of Canada’s U.S. retail bank operations for $3.45 billion in cash and stock, making it the fifth largest bank in the United States. The WSJ gets some early reaction to the deal.

ING said it has put its car leasing business up for sale, in a deal Dutch media reported may be worth $5.7 billion.

Japan’s industrial, healthcare and technology sectors are the main focus for the Carlyle Group, the co-head of its Japanese unit told the Reuters Rebuilding Japan Summit in Tokyo on Monday.

Rio Tinto, Xstrata, Nyrstar and Noble Group in the past week have announced plans to merge or expand output or capacity — risky bets if famed market bear Nouriel Roubini’s dire warnings about China come to pass.

The rash of accounting scandals at Chinese companies could spell defeat for investment banks in Hong Kong in their long-running battle to avoid being made liable for the prospectuses of IPOs they sponsor.

Gerard Fitzpatrick: Positive on global growth

Guest blogger Gerard Fitzpatrick is portfolio manager at Russell Investments, where he runs a $5 billion global bond fund.

The views expressed here are entirely the author’s own and do not constitute Reuters point of view.

The global economic outlook is positive overall, currently powered by China and America’s twin engines of growth. Questions have been asked about the level to which the Japanese disaster may slow down the world’s economic recovery, but in reality, it’s expected to have only a small negative effect on global growth this year.

Deals wrap: Conoco may double assets sale

ConocoPhillips, the third-largest U.S. oil company, said it might double its planned sale of less-desirable assets to $20 billion, with proceeds going to buy back stock.

Conoco is executing a plan, first announced in late 2009, to increase shareholder value through debt reduction, stock buybacks and increased dividends. Conoco did not immediately specify what might be sold, but did say those assets targeted would be mature, high-cost projects.

Consumer goods group Colgate-Palmolive has agreed to pay around $940 million for Sanex, a shower gel and deodorant brand which owner Unilever had been ordered to sell. The sale comes just a week after Unilever announced it was stepping up new product launches to drive growth.

Yen? Too late.

European investors have missed the boat if they wanted to adjust their portfolio to take advantage of a rising yen as the currency has peaked, says BNP Paribas Asset Management’s Hubert Goye.

You can watch his interview with Reuters Insider here: http://link.reuters.com/ket58n

Deals wrap: Seeking clarity on Fannie and Freddie

A foreclosed home is shown in Chicago June 29, 2010.   REUTERS/John Gress The Obama administration will pick the brains of housing finance leaders on how to fix Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, but made one thing is clear: there is no going back to their pre-crisis structure. *View article

BHP Billiton may see potash as an ideal fit within its portfolio but today Potash Corp’s board rejected BHP’s unsolicited $38.6 billion offer, terming it as “grossly inadequate.” *View article

Energy stocks ranked among the worst performers in the second quarter on jitters about a double-dip recession. What did the top fund managers do? They staked out the sector much like they did with financial companies earlier in the year. *View article

Edward Cartwright: New dawn for Japanese hedge funds

Edward Cartwright is head of business development at alternative investment manager LGT Capital Partners in London. The firm runs $18 bln in hedge fund and private equity assets.

The views expressed here are entirely the author’s own and do not constitute Reuters point of view.

Edward CartwrightIf, like me, you have followed its stock market over the past 20 years, you may have concluded that far from being the land of the rising sun, Japan is the land of the false dawn.

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