Jeff Mason is a White House Correspondent for Reuters and the 2016-2017 president of the White House Correspondents’ Association. He was the lead Reuters correspondent for President Barack Obama's 2012 campaign and interviewed the president at the White House in 2015. Jeff has been based in Washington since 2008, when he covered the historic race between Obama, Hillary Clinton and John McCain. Jeff started his career in Frankfurt, Germany, where he covered the airline industry before moving to Brussels, Belgium, where he covered the European Union. He is a Colorado native, proud graduate of Northwestern University and former Fulbright scholar.
Twitter handle: @jeffmason1
［香港 １５日 ロイター BREAKINGVIEWS］ - ソフトバンクグループが通信子会社のソフトバンクを上場させるのは、賢明な選択かもしれない。
HONG KONG (Reuters Breakingviews) - A mobile float might be a smart call by Japan’s SoftBank Group. A separate listing for the company's domestic telecoms business could unlock fresh funds for boss Masayoshi Son, prod the unit into better performance, and shrink the “conglomerate discount” applied to the parent’s shares.
HONG KONG (Reuters Breakingviews) - Fast Retailing is heating up. First-quarter figures offer fresh confirmation of the turnaround at the Japanese retailer behind Uniqlo - and show all those reasonably priced puffer jackets and light weight sweaters have generated a cash pile that now exceeds $7 billion. If Fast Retailing does not share more of the wealth, troublemakers could emerge, however.
HONG KONG (Reuters Breakingviews) - There is plenty of discord and uncertainty as U.S. President Donald Trump’s second year starts. Yet money is cheap, the global economy is motoring, and markets are ebullient. That combustible mixture could be called "froth and frustration." How this ironic social contrast, worthy of Jane Austen, resolves itself will be key for 2018.
HONG KONG (Reuters Breakingviews) - Asahi is sobering up a bit when it comes to dealmaking. Late on Wednesday, the Japanese brewer said it would sell the roughly one-fifth it owns of Chinese counterpart Tsingtao for about 106 billion yen ($937 million). The near-decade-long bet has not been time or money well spent but at least this shows Asahi will now focus on investments where it can wield meaningful control.
TOKYO (Reuters Breakingviews) - Investors will keep the pressure on corporate Japan to change. On top of governance trouble, like the strategic and accounting errors that nearly killed Toshiba, have come revelations of dodgy quality-control at firms such as Mitsubishi Materials and Toray. The scandals are likely to continue into 2018.
HONG KONG (Reuters Breakingviews) - A last-minute activist attack on Toshiba could be good for investors. Argyle Street Management argues the Japanese conglomerate need not follow through on an $18 billion leveraged buyout of its NAND flash-memory business. The Hong Kong hedge-fund manager has a solid case. While an immediate halt is unlikely, a later U-turn is both possible and desirable.
HONG KONG (Reuters Breakingviews) - Uber's early backers are on a collision course with their own greed. Japan’s SoftBank and allied investors want to buy roughly one-sixth of the bumptious ride-hailing firm. Existing owners can sell at a $48 billion valuation, or about 30 percent below the last one. Even with a markdown, they could make many times their money. The promise of more, however risky, will cloud the thinking.
HONG KONG (Reuters Breakingviews) - Nippon Paint’s run at Axalta looks less than brilliant. The $11 billion Japanese company has lobbed in a cash bid for its U.S. rival, according to Reuters, killing the target’s merger talks with Akzo Nobel of the Netherlands. A deal valued at some $12 billion including debt, even assuming hefty savings, would destroy value. Fulfilling global ambitions may be costly.
HONG KONG (Reuters Breakingviews) - WPP has rebranded its Tokyo defence. The advertising conglomerate is selling into a $1.4 billion buyout it argued “significantly undervalues” its Japanese partner ADK. That reveals a weaker-than-billed negotiating position. One consolation could be re-investing in the Bain-led deal.
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