Frontrunning: August 2
- What's wrong with this headline: Obama authorizes secret support for Syrian rebels (Reuters)
- Hilsenrath promptly dusts off ashes of sheer propaganda failure, tries again: Fed Gives Stronger Signals of Action (WSJ)
- Fed Hints at Fresh Action on Economy (FT)
- Fed Poised to Step Up Stimulus Unless Economy Strengthens (Bloomberg)
- IMF Chief Lagarde Praises Greece, Spain for Efforts (Bloomberg) - efforts to beg as loud as possible?
- US sanctions against bank 'target' China (China Daily)
- Trimming China's Financial Hedges (WSJ)
- ganda central bank cuts key lending rate to 17 pct (Reuters)
- Greece Agrees €11.5bn Spending Cuts (FT) - Agrees? Or does what a good debt slave is told to do
- Germany Retains Stable AAA Outlook at S&P After Moody’s Cut (Bloomberg)
- Spain’s Bond Auction Beats Target as Borrowing Costs Rise (Bloomberg)
Overnight media Digest
* Google Inc unveiled changes to its mobile-payment system in a bid to get the upper hand in the battle for control of consumers' "digital wallets."
* John Quinn, a lawyer for Samsung Electronics Co Ltd , said the company's decision to send reporters disputed evidence in its patent case with Apple Inc was "lawful" and "ethical," responding to federal Judge Lucy Koh's request to explain the unusual move.
* The global economy is experiencing a widespread "decline of confidence" as problems mount in the euro zone and beyond, International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde said.
* Irving Picard, the court-appointed trustee handling the Bernard Madoff bankruptcy, is in a legal tug of war with the New York attorney general over $410 million for victims of the Ponzi scheme.
* A federal jury awarded $1 billion to Monsanto Co in a patent-infringement lawsuit against rival DuPont Co over Monsanto's Roundup Ready seed technology.
* Standard Chartered Plc said it was confident it could ride out slowing growth in Asia and hit its full-year financial targets, as the lender continued to steal market share from European banks.
* Chevron Corp and offshore driller Transocean Ltd face another legal hurdle in Brazil, where a court barred the companies from producing or transporting oil until an investigation into an oil spill is completed.
* American International Group Inc is looking to buy back a large amount of its shares from the government, according to people familiar with the company's thinking.
* A state court judge in California ruled that Oracle Corp is contractually obligated to develop software for some high-profile server systems sold by Hewlett-Packard Co.
* An electronic-trading glitch roiled trading in nearly 150 stocks early Wednesday, sparking confusion among traders and investors and further undermining confidence in the basic machinery of financial markets.
* In an uncharacteristically strong statement, the Fed said it will "closely monitor" the economy and "will provide additional accommodation as needed to promote a stronger economic recovery and sustained improvement in labor market conditions."
NATIONALISING RBS ON THE TABLE
Senior government figures are discussing the possibility of buying out private investors in Royal Bank of Scotland.
FED HINTS AT FRESH ACTION ON ECONOMY
The U.S. Federal Reserve raised hopes that it will act to boost the economy in September.
NYSE REVIEWS TRADING AFTER ALGO GLITCH
The New York Stock Exchange was on Wednesday reviewing highly unusual trading in 148 stocks after an electronic trading system malfunctioned.
BACON TO RETURN $2 BLN TO INVESTORS
Head of Moore Capital Louis Bacon plans to return some $2 billion to investors in his flagship fund to make it more nimble.
EUROPE AND ASIA WEAKNESS DENTS US REVENUES
U.S. corporate revenue growth slowed considerably in the second quarter due to weakness in Europe and Asia and a strong dollar.
UK LENDERS SET TO TAKE CONTROL OF MOUCHEL
A consortium of banks is poised to take control of Mouchel , after the highly leveraged outsourcing group agreed a debt-for-equity swap with its lenders.
SOC GEN CHIEF WARNS ON FRANCE FINANCE TAX
Frederic Oudea, chairman and chief executive of Societe Generale, said that France's new tax on financial transactions risked making European assets less attractive.
EL JAMES SHADES HARRY POTTER ON AMAZON
E.L. James's Fifty Shades erotic trilogy has overtaken sales of JK Rowling's entire Harry Potter series on Amazon.co.uk
* A federal jury awarded $1 billion in damages to the crop biotechnology leader Monsanto Co, saying that its arch rival DuPont had willfully infringed a patent covering Roundup Ready soybeans.
* The hedge fund titan, Louis Bacon, has been stumped by the current debt crisis in Europe. He will return about $2 billion, or 25 percent of the main fund he manages at Moore Capital Management to his investors.
* An MF Global Holdings Ltd trustee, James Giddens, damped hopes that customers would recover all of their missing money from the bankrupt brokerage firm, telling lawmakers that a $1.6 billion gap remained.
* Bucking the industry trend of weak earnings, the British bank Standard Chartered Plc reported that its net income rose 11.3 percent in the first half of the year on strength in Asia and other emerging markets.
* The Federal Reserve took no new steps to support the economy on Wednesday, but it said in a statement that it was ready to act if job growth did not improve.
* An automated stock trading program suddenly flooded the market with millions of trades on Wednesday morning, spreading turmoil across Wall Street and drawing renewed attention to the fragility and instability of the nation's stock markets.
* Auto sales in the United States cooled off in July. Over all, the industry reported sales of 1.15 million vehicles during July, which was an 8.9 percent improvement over the same period a year ago.
* Credit Suisse named David DeNunzio, one of its veteran deal makers, as the global chairman of its mergers and acquisitions group, according to an internal memorandum reviewed by DealBook
THE GLOBE AND MAIL
* Premier Christy Clark's high-profile campaign to seek a better B.C. deal from the controversial Northern Gateway project does not appear to have lifted support for her embattled BC Liberals ahead of the next provincial election, a new poll suggests.
Report in the business section:
Canada's third-largest gold company, Kinross Gold Corp , has abruptly replaced its chief executive officer, the second high-profile dismissal of a major gold company president since June.
* Premier Jean Charest is generally not a big fan of referendums. But as the Liberal leader launched his campaign for a fourth straight mandate, he made it sound like the September 4 vote will be a yes-or-no choice on Quebec's contentious tuition-hike issue.
* As Canadian hardware suppliers panic over the possibility that Lowe's Companies Inc could take over Rona Inc , the Quebec government appears to be steering towards building a local buyout group for the Canuck retailer
European Economic Summary
- Spain Unemployment (Net) -27,800 m/m. Previous -98,900 m/m.
- Switzerland Retail Sales 3.7% y/y. Previous 6.4% y/y.
- Switzerland PMI Manufacturing 48.6 – higher than expected. Consensus 47.0. Previous 48.1.
- Norway Unemployment Rate 3.0% – in line with expectations. Consensus 3.0%. Previous 3.0%.
- UK PMI Construction 50.9 – higher than expected. Consensus 48.7. Previous 48.2.
- Euro Area PPI -0.5% m/m – lower than expected. Consensus -0.4% m/m. Previous -0.5% m/m.
- UK MPC Meeting – Rates/Asset Purchase Target. Consensus 0.50%, £375b (unch). Previous 0.50%, £375b.
- ECB Meeting – Rate Decision. Consensus Refi rate 0.75%, Depo rate 0.25% (unch). Previous Refi rate 0.75%, Depo rate 0.25%.