HONG KONG (Reuters Breakingviews) - Beijing's sovereign wealth fund could do without the fried chicken. China Investment Corporation may join a bid to take private Yum China, the $14 billion operator of KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell outlets in the People’s Republic, Bloomberg reports. A takeout has merits, but is also a risky distraction for the $940 billion giant. Its mission is to invest the country’s vast foreign exchange holdings abroad – not to dabble in complicated buyouts at home.
LONDON (Reuters Breakingviews) - Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman risks picking the wrong driver. The kingdom’s sovereign wealth fund already holds nearly 5 percent of Tesla and expressed interest in taking the electric-vehicle innovator private, according to boss Elon Musk. That’d be a dicey way to diversify away from oil.
LONDON (Reuters Breakingviews) - Turkey’s currency crisis was easy to predict. What is more surprising is how weak the global response has been. The old world financial order is badly missed.
HONG KONG (Reuters Breakingviews) - China’s stealth support for housing is looking wobbly. Officials are tweaking a $470 billion program through which the People’s Bank of China effectively provides lenders with cheap loans to upgrade housing in smaller cities. Even a small change to the scheme could cause real estate and stock markets to shudder.
NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - Elon Musk has revealed a bit about his mooted buyout of Tesla, and a lot about himself. On Monday he explained why he thinks a $59 billion take-private deal is doable, and claimed that the Saudis want to finance it. But the way he has handled disclosures confirms how ill-suited he is for his public role.
HONG KONG (Reuters Breakingviews) - Beijing’s ownership is no longer reliable investor insurance. China Huarong Asset Management said on Sunday that its first-half earnings would fall sharply, the latest stumble in an acute crisis triggered by its chairman’s fall from grace. The government, its top stakeholder, seems content to watch the stock collapse. State backing, it seems, now comes with even more fine print.
LONDON (Reuters Breakingviews) - After digging itself into a crisis, Turkey will probably find the worst way out. The lira’s alarming slide is fanning concern that the country will struggle to meet external financing needs. President Tayyip Erdogan may soon have to choose between imposing capital controls and seeking help from the International Monetary Fund. Defiant self-sufficiency is more his style.
HONG KONG (Reuters Breakingviews) - A fight for big spenders in Macau has made earnings volatile in China's gambling hub. Battle lines are being drawn in the gaudy Cotai Strip, where casinos are pulling out the stops to pull in the punters. The conflict is likely to spread, and could weigh on profit margins.
NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - Tesla is getting a lesson in buyout realities. Elon Musk’s stated desire to take the money-losing carmaker private has set Wall Street all atwitter. But Dun & Bradstreet’s $5.4 billion leveraged buyout, announced on Thursday, is a reminder of what it usually takes: a mature, mediocre, profitable firm. That’s a better bet than capital-draining dreams of domination.
NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - CEO Elon Musk’s tweet about wanting to take the company private is causing a stir. Unorthodoxy aside, its volatile boss and weak corporate governance means Tesla is better off the public roads. Plus, Pakistan’s likely new leader Imran Khan will have to go hat in hand to the IMF.
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