Frontrunning: January 29

  • Global Stocks Start 2018 With a Roar (WSJ)
  • Challenged on all fronts, Britain's May faces pressure over Brexit law (Reuters)
  • Governments Worry That Cryptocurrencies Could be the ‘Next Swiss Bank Account’ (BBG)
  • U.S. Spending Rises in December; Saving Rate Lowest Since 2005 (WSJ)
  • Trump security team sees building U.S. 5G network as option (Reuters)
  • All Signs Point to Big Democratic Wins in 2018 (BBG)
  • U.S. Companies Brace for Wider Oversight of Chinese Deals (WSJ)
  • The Follower Factory: how celebs buy twitter followers (NYT)
  • U.S. authorities due to make arrests in futures 'spoofing' probe (Reuters)
  • North Korea, Under Sanctions Strain, Dials Back Military Exercises (WSJ)
  • First Lady’s Military Flights Before Washington Move Cost More Than $675,000 (WSJ)
  • Why Canada is the next frontier for shale oil (Reuters)
  • SpaceX’s New Beast of a Rocket Is Go for Launch (BBG)
  • Japan raps Coincheck, orders broader checks after $530 million cryptocurrency theft (reuters)
  • How Apple Built a Chip Powerhouse to Threaten Qualcomm and Intel (BBG)
  • AutoNation Just Decided to Stop Caring About Pot Smoking (BBG)
  • London’s Bankers Haven’t Been This Gloomy Since 2008 (BBG)
  • U.N. employees in Gaza hold protest strike over U.S. aid cut (Reuters)
  • Hung out to dry twice, Tennessee city stumped by Trump's washer tariffs (Reuters)
  • British Lords Get Ready to Disrupt Brexit (BBG)
  • VW faces inquiry call over diesel fumes test on monkeys (reuters)


Overnight Media Digest


- U.S. President Donald Trump extended his threats of action against America's trading partners, this time hinting at major retaliation against the European Union for what he described as its "very unfair" trade policy toward the U.S.

- A group of activist investors are joining together to call on Avon Products Inc to seek a buyer, in a move that could set up a fight for the company's board as a key deadline looms.

- Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd and Foxconn Technology Group have co-led a 2.2 billion yuan ($348 million) funding round into Chinese electric-vehicle manufacturer Xiaopeng Motors, marking Alibaba's first big investment in a carmaker.

- In initial disclosures about critical security flaws discovered in its processors, Intel Corp notified a small group of customers, including Chinese technology companies, but left out the U.S. government, according to people familiar with the matter and some of the companies involved.



- British construction outsourcing company Carillion Plc attempted to “wriggle out of its obligations” to pensioners for the last decade, according to Parliament’s Work and Pensions Select Committee.

- Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was released from police custody late on Sunday after a brief appearance at a rally in Moscow calling for the boycott of a March presidential election that he said would be rigged.

- Commonwealth Bank of Australia named retail banking boss Matt Comyn as its new chief executive officer, to lead the company as it faces challenging trading conditions as well as allegations of massive money laundering system breaches.



- The Los Angeles Times is expected to name Jim Kirk, a veteran journalist and former editor and publisher of The Chicago Sun-Times, as its next editor in chief on Monday, according to two company officials.

- A substantial rise in oil prices in recent months has led to a resurgence in United States oil production, enabling the country to challenge the dominance of Saudi Arabia and dampen price pressures at the pump.

- The tech companies including Alphabet Inc's Google, Facebook Inc and Inc are preparing for a stringent new set of data privacy rules in Europe, called the General Data Protection Regulation. Set to take effect on May 25, the regulations restrict what types of personal data the tech companies can collect, store and use across the 28-member European Union.



** Despite controversy over a "success fee" that it paid for an earlier South African contract, Bombardier Inc is in a strong position to win more business from the same rail project, a senior South African official says.

** Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's government is refusing to address calls for more transparency around deals some of Canada's biggest TV providers have struck to accept payments from RT – the Kremlin-controlled news channel described by U.S. intelligence authorities as part of Russia's "propaganda machine" – in order to guarantee distribution to Canadian viewers.

** Canada will keep operating its aging CF-18s jets for another 15 years until 2032. There had been plans to take the jets out of service shortly after 2025.

** Ontario's Progressive Conservative party's president Rick Dykstra announced his resignation in a post on his verified Twitter account on Sunday night. Dykstra's resignation follows a major staff shakeup at the party earlier in the day, as well as the resignation of party leader Patrick Brown amid sexual misconduct allegations last week.



The Times

- Ministers have been urged to force social media companies to crack down on online grooming after police revealed that they have investigated more than 1,300 allegations of children being targeted in breach of a new law.

- Brexiteers have begun a co-ordinated attempt to discredit Philip Hammond and senior officials days before cabinet ministers see the first economic analysis of different options for exiting the European Union.

The Guardian

- Prime Minister Theresa May is under growing pressure from both wings of her own party to offer more clarity in public about what Brexit deal Britain wants, or face the mounting risk of a no-confidence vote.

- The BBC will admit this week it has made mistakes in how it has paid on-air stars and reveal it is prepared to work with women who have campaigned for equal pay at the corporation to overhaul its pay structure.

The Telegraph

- Ingvar Kamprad, the billionaire founder of flat-pack furniture retailer Ikea, has died at his home in southern Sweden following a short illness at the age of 91.

- Carillion Plc has been accused of trying to "wriggle out" of its pension obligations by a committee of members of parliament.

Sky News

- Unsecured creditors of BHS, the retailer once owned by Philip Green‎, lodged claims worth almost 1 billion pounds ($1.42 billion)in the aftermath of its collapse, according to a report compiled by the chain’s liquidators.