Frontrunning: December 12

  • Parties Make Final Push Ahead of Dramatic Alabama Senate Race (WSJ)
  • Oil hits two-and-a-half year high on pipeline shutdown, stocks take breather (Reuters)
  • Alabama drama nears an explosive end (The Hill)
  • Moore, Jones Expose Rural-Urban Divide That Defines Alabama Race (BBG)
  • The Force Behind Bitcoin’s Meteoric Rise: Millions of Asian Investors (WSJ)
  • Austrian Explosion Rattles Europe’s Gas Market (BBG)
  • Scant oversight on building adds to hurricane costs (Reuters)
  • Optimism Among U.S. Small Businesses Jumps to Highest Since 1983 (BBG)
  • As Fed Deliberates, Amazon Is Making Its Job More Difficult (WSJ)
  • Trump's push to cut federal jobs has modest impact, mostly in defense (Reuters)
  • Westfield Agrees to European Takeover Valued at $16 Billion (WSJ)
  • Risks lurk as yen keeps BOJ from faster tapering despite stronger economy (Reuters)
  • A Manager of $42 Billion Fears Bubble in World's Biggest Stocks (BBG)
  • Japan air force drills with U.S. bombers, stealth fighters near Korean peninsula (Reuters)
  • What Hedge Funds Will Do After the Hedge Fund Model Dies (BBG)
  • Be careful, murdered Iranian activist's daughter tells European exiles (Reuters)
  • Audi CEO drops plan to sell motorcycle brand Ducati (Reuters)
  • Trump May Actually Be Right About the Trade Deficit With Canada (BBG)
  • PepsiCo makes biggest public pre-order of Tesla Semis: 100 trucks (Reuters)
  • Lockheed’s Littoral Ships Running 11 Months Late, U.S. Navy Says (BBG)
  • Musk’s SpaceX Doubles Down on Method for Cheaper Rocket Launches (BBG)
  • Macron seeks climate action after U.S. withdrawal from Paris accord (Reuters)

Overnight Media Digest


- Vietnam Beverage Co, a unit of Singapore-listed Thai Beverage PCL, has submitted a bid to acquire at least a 25 pct stake in state-owned Saigon Beer Alcohol Beverage Corp , known as Sabeco.

- Comcast Corp said it is no longer pursuing an acquisition of several key media and entertainment assets from 21st Century Fox, leaving Rupert Murdoch's media empire in position to finalize a deal with Walt Disney Co.

- Accessories retail chain Charming Charlie Llc said it reached a restructuring pact with its lenders and equity sponsors that would allow it to keep a majority of its stores and online presence open during the bankruptcy process.

- Verizon Communications Inc has struck a more than $2 billion deal to show NFL football games on its mobile network as well as its Yahoo , Yahoo Sports and go90 mobile platforms.

- John Burbank's Passport Capital, famed for its profitable bets against subprime housing ahead of the financial crisis, will shutter its flagship fund after persistent losses, according to a letter to investors.



- Apple Inc confirmed its plans to buy UK-based music recognition app Shazam, in its biggest acquisition since the deal to buy Beats Electronics in 2014.

- Jefferies analysts said the broadband provider TalkTalk Telecom Group Plc was heading for a breach of debt covenants after which after which the company slumped to a five-year low on Monday.

- French IT services group Atos SE proposed to buy Gemalto NV in a deal worth about 4.3 billion euros.

- UK North Sea’s main pipeline system is likely to be shut for weeks for emergency repairs. The news sent oil and gas prices soaring as the country braces itself for a prolonged cold snap



- Germany's domestic intelligence agency has accused China of using LinkedIn and other social media sites to infiltrate the German government, a charge that the Chinese government promptly denied. (

- The U.S. Treasury Department released a one-page analysis of the nearly 500-page Senate tax bill on Monday that suggested the $1.5 trillion plan would more than pay for itself, assuming the economy grows much faster than any independent analysis of the bill has projected. (

- HSBC Holdings Plc on Monday said that the United States authorities were preparing to dismiss criminal charges against the bank, five years after it reached an agreement to avoid prosecution related to lapses in its money-laundering controls. (

- Volvo AB is putting video cameras into cars equipped with its latest driver-assistance features and giving them to five families, aiming to gather data that will help develop fully autonomous cars for highway use by 2021, Marcus Rothoff, a Volvo executive, said at an event on Monday. (




** The Chief Executive of CanniMed Therapeutics Inc Brent Zettl says two directors launched a covert campaign to sell the medical cannabis producer after they and the rest of the board agreed to pursue a deal that would position it for the recreational weed market.

** Construction of the most expensive public-infrastructure project in British Columbia's history, the Site C dam, will continue, dashing the hopes of environmentalists and some Indigenous communities that the new minority NDP government would stop construction.

** David Baazov, the Montreal internet gambling entrepreneur charged with insider trading, finally had his day in court Monday as a legal debate rages over whether the case against the Amaya Inc founder should be thrown out.


** Alternative asset manager West Face Capital Inc has formally filed a lawsuit against Home Capital Group Inc and three former executives, seeking C$70 million ($54.6 million) in damages over claims the mortgage lender's public disclosure was "inaccurate, incomplete and misleading."



The Times

- Lloyds Banking Group Plc discussed a merger with a string of banks, including ABN Amro Group NV of the Netherlands, and Deutsche Postbank AG of Germany, before going after its stricken rival HBOS in the autumn of 2008, a court has heard.

- City lawyers have said that plans to put the Serious Fraud Office effectively under the control of a new "national economic crime centre" could make it harder to attract a director after Amber Rudd, the British home secretary, said that the government would set up the centre to root out wrongdoing.

The Guardian

- The European Union could scrap a divisive scheme that compels member states to accept quotas of refugees, the president of the European council, Donald Tusk, will tell EU leaders at a summit on Thursday.

- Ryanair Holdings Plc flights to and from Dublin could be disrupted by strikes over Christmas after pilots based in Ireland voted for industrial action.

The Telegraph

- In a highly unusual move, Britain, France, Germany, Italy and Spain have joined forces in writing a letter to the U.S. Treasury expressing "significant concerns" about the tax changes "having a major distortive impact on international trade".

- The chemicals company Ineos has shut down the North Sea's most important oil and gas pipeline system after discovering a widening crack. The company said it discovered a small crack in the pipeline outside Aberdeen.

Sky News

- Parts of the Bank of England could be moved out of its historic base in London and relocated to Birmingham under Labour if it wins the next general election. The move would be designed to strengthen other regions, described in a report commissioned by shadow chancellor John McDonnell as "underweighted in policy decisions".

- HSBC Holdings Plc has drawn a line under a scandal that saw it fined $1.9 billion in the U.S. 5 years ago for failing to prevent Mexican drug cartels from laundering hundreds of millions of dollars. The bank said the deferred prosecution agreement entered into with the Department of Justice had expired - lifting the threat of further penalties.

The Independent

- Three-quarters of Britain's small and medium-sized businesses are unprepared for the introduction of strict new EU data laws designed to protect people's private information following a number of high profile data breaches, a merchant bank Close Brothers has warned in a survey.