Frontrunning: June 26

  • Italian Bank Deal Raises Questions About Eurozone Rules (WSJ)
  • UK PM May strikes $1.3 billion deal to get Northern Irish DUP support for her government (Reuters)
  • Nestle Targeted by Dan Loeb in Activist’s Biggest-Ever Bet (BBG)
  • Nestle 'committed' to strategy as activist investor moves in (Reuters)
  • Troubled Air-Bag Maker Takata Files for Bankruptcy (WSJ)
  • Merkel’s Election Opponent Slams Her for Being Too Nice to Trump (BBG)
  • Berlusconi Stages Comeback to Frontline Politics (BBG)
  • European Stocks Jump as Crude, Nestle Power Gains (BBG)
  • Amazon’s Grocery Ambitions Spell Trouble for Food Brands (WSJ)
  • Clogged oil arteries slow U.S. shale rush to record output (Reuters)
  • U.S. warship stayed on deadly collision course despite warning - container ship captain (Reuters)
  • How Earthquakes Are Rattling a Dutch Province Atop One of the World’s Richest Gas Troves (WSJ)
  • Deutsche Bank Fund Buys London Office Buildings for $395 Million (BBG)
  • Trumpmania Cools in This Pennsylvania Town (BBG)
  • Asylum seekers in Canada trapped in legal limbo (Reuters)
  • Saudi Religious Police Return, Just With a Little Less Vengeance (BBG)
  • New U.S. ambassador to China says North Korea a top priority (Reuters)
  • Bankers Have Less to Fear From ‘Stress Tests' (WSJ)
  • Europe Doesn’t Need American Climate Scientists. It Needs American Climate Data (BBG)
  • SpaceX Executes Back-to-Back Launches in Roughly 48 Hours (WSJ)
  • U.S. court hears challenge on Texas law to punish 'sanctuary cities' (Reuters)
  • OPEC Looks Totally Bewildered by the Oil Market (BBG)
  • Bankers Are Hiring Cyber-Security Experts to Help Get Deals Done (BBG)


Overnight Media Digest:


- Billionaire activist investor Daniel Loeb's Third Point LLC hedge fund has taken its largest-ever initial bet on a public company, with a $3.5 billion stake in Nestle SA piling pressure on the world's largest packaged-foods company to find ways to accelerate growth.

- Takata Corp filed for bankruptcy protection in Japan and the U.S. and said it would sell most of its operations to a rival, capping the steep decline of an 84-year-old Japanese company nearly nine years after it began a global recall of rupture-prone automotive air bags.

- Facebook Inc is talking to Hollywood studios and agencies about producing TV-quality shows with an eye toward launching original programming by late summer, people familiar with the matter said.

- Elon Musk's SpaceX completed an impressive, bi-coastal demonstration of launch capability, successfully executing the second of two unmanned missions within a roughly 48-hour period in a high-water mark for the company's operational prowess.



* The Association of British Insurers had warned the government of the dangers of flammable cladding on buildings a month before the Grenfell Tower fire that killed at least 79 people.

* Italy began winding down two failed regional banks on Sunday in a deal that could cost the state up to 17 billion euros ($19.03 billion) and will leave the lenders' good assets in the hands of the nation's biggest retail bank, Intesa Sanpaolo.

* Russian billionaire Mikhail Fridman's fund L1 Retail has agreed to buy health food chain Holland & Barrett for about 1.8 billion pounds



The following are the top stories on the New York Times business pages. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

- Takata Corp, the Japanese auto parts maker crippled by vast airbag recalls, filed for bankruptcy protection in the United States and said it would sell its surviving operations to a Chinese-owned American rival, Key Safety Systems.

- Third Point, run by Daniel Loeb, has called on the Swiss food giant Nestlé SA to sell its stake in L'Oréal and move more quickly to adapt to changing consumer tastes.

- The European Commission approved plans by the Italian government to provide 4.8 billion euros ($5.37 billion) in cash and 12 billion euros in guarantees to protect depositors of the troubled lenders, Banca Popolare di Vicenza and Veneto Banca.




** China has signed an agreement saying it will stop conducting state-sponsored cyberattacks aimed at stealing Canadian private-sector trade secrets and proprietary technology.

** The British Columbia Liberal government is poised to introduce legislation this week on campaign finance reform, a step toward shedding British Columbia's "wild west" reputation for no-holds-barred political fundraising that would finally bring it in line with other jurisdictions.

** The Conservative Party leader Andrew Scheer is accusing the Liberal government of wanting to "appease" China as it aims to negotiate a free-trade agreement, a deal that he says would hurt Canadian workers and businesses.


** As Inc makes a bold move into bricks-and-mortar fresh grocery retailing through its pending purchase of Whole Foods Market Inc, Wal-Mart Stores Inc is increasing the amount of products available on its website in the next two months by opening it up to an "endless aisle" of third-party Marketplace sellers, making goods from outside brands and small businesses available for sale on its website.

** The Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce is pushing ahead with its ambitions in the United States now that it has completed its $5 billion acquisition of Chicago-based PrivateBancorp Inc, focusing first on organic growth but leaving the door open to "geographic regional expansion in logical places" and potential "tuck-in acquisitions as they appear.'

** Calgary-based North West Refining, which owns 50 per cent of the Sturgeon Refinery near Edmonton, has hired investment bankers and is looking for "liquidity alternatives," according to AltaCorp Capital analyst Dirk Lever, citing the privately-owned company's annual report which has not been made public.



The Times

* Talks to conclude a trade deal between the United States and European Union will resume after the German elections in September, America's chief trade negotiator ,Robert Lighthizer, has said.

* The Serious Fraud Office has launched an investigation into the collapse of an Anglo-Iranian commodities trader linked with Norman Lamont, the government's trade envoy to Iran.

The Guardian

* British media secretary Karen Bradlewill this week delivers her verdict on whether to greenlight Twenty-First Century Fox's proposed 11.7 billion pounds ($14.90 billion) takeover of Sky Plc, or refer the deal to the competition authorities for further scrutiny.

* Former chief of National Grid, Steve Holliday, said that concerns over the threat posed by cyber-attacks on power stations and electricity grids is "off the scale" in the UK energy sector.

The Telegraph

* The 7 trillion pounds investment community in Britain will learn this week the outcome of an investigation into the sector by Financial Conduct Authority, with many braced for a shake-up over transparency, fees and competition after years of criticism.

* Heavier investment in Britain's armed forces can strengthen the UK not only militarily, but also economically, according to a new research by PwC.

Sky News

* Anthony Hotson, who already sits on Cenkos Securities board as a non-executive director and chairs its remuneration committee, ‎has been identified as the preferred candidate to succeed the outgoing chief executive of the company, according to Sky News.

* The British government has said that Britain will maintain duty-free access to its markets once it has left the European Union for goods from dozens of developing countries.