Gold prices are climbing, with the precious metal notching its fifth straight gain as investors seek safety amid concerns over coronavirus. ETF Trends CIO & Director of Research Dave Nadig joins Seana Smith on The Ticker to discuss.
Gold prices are climbing, with the precious metal notching its fifth straight gain as investors seek safety amid concerns over coronavirus. ETF Trends CIO & Director of Research Dave Nadig joins Seana Smith on The Ticker to discuss.
The catalysts behind gold’s strength were a sharp retreat by U.S. Treasury yields on Thursday and a generally softer U.S. Dollar.
(Bloomberg) -- Rising defaults have prompted India to tighten oversight of corporate bond sales, causing issuance to slump in a blow to a long-sought goal of expanding the market.Offerings of rupee notes have fallen to 43.8 billion rupees ($584 million) this month, the slowest start to a financial year since 2008. That’s due in part to rules that took effect April 1 strengthening the role of trustees for secured bonds backed by assets. Such offerings have made up about 60% of India’s total domestic issuance in the last 10 years.Firms defaulted on at least 52 billion rupees of domestic bonds so far this year, the most on record for a similar period. That comes as a setback as Covid-19 cases surge recently. It also reverses the trend from last year when unprecedented stimulus helped the pace of non-repayment slow from an all-time high in 2019.What The New Rules DoStarting this month, bond trustees need to evaluate and ensure that assets backing bonds are at all times adequate to discharge the interest and principal amount.They have to carry out checks and validate that the issuer has the necessary permissions from lenders in case the company creates any further charge on the asset.The trustees also need to provide ‘due diligence certificates’ to the issuer at the time of filing a draft offer agreement and before the notes are listed.What’s NextSome bond arrangers see the slowdown in the primary market as temporary, and expect issuance to pick up as companies comply with the new regulations.Issuance of unsecured bonds, which aren’t covered by the rules, may roll on. Bankers say offerings of such notes from government-owned companies that tend to sell them should continue apace.State-run REC Ltd. is seeking bids for as much as 40 billion rupees of unsecured notes maturing in 2024 on Monday.(Updates bond sales number in second paragraph.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Coca-Cola Co.’s sales beat expectations in the first quarter as the soda maker said it saw early -- though uneven -- signs of recovery in demand, particularly in areas with stronger rates of vaccination against Covid-19.The company also said it plans to sell a portion of the Coca-Cola Beverages Africa bottling business via an initial public offering.Coke’s organic revenue, which excludes the impact of currency or acquisitions, climbed 6% in the quarter ended April 2, according to a statement Monday. That topped the estimated 0.5% growth analysts had been expecting, according to forecasts compiled by Bloomberg.The results hint at a potential rebound as consumers worldwide emerge from more than a year of isolation, a process that is happening at different rates in different countries. The company is “encouraged by improvements in our business, especially in markets where vaccine availability is increasing and economies are opening up,” Chief Executive Officer James Quincey said in the statement.The soda business is unlikely to see full recovery until people are back at restaurants and amusement parks worldwide, buying overpriced hot dogs and giant-sized soft drinks. The uneven reopening pace is showing up in the results: Recovery remains “asynchronous” around the world, the company said. Unit case volume was down 6% in North America, but up 9% in Asia Pacific. Globally, case unit volume was flat.Coke shares rose 1% to $54.20 at 9:52 a.m. in New York. The stock declined 2.1% this year through Friday.Bottling IPOThe company also announced plans to list Coca-Cola Beverages Africa as a publicly traded company within the next 18 months. “A standalone listing for CCBA will enable the bottler to build on its growth trajectory and access capital independently to meet the investment needs of the business, which is great for stakeholders across Africa,” said Jacques Vermeulen, CEO of CCBA.An IPO of Coke’s stake could value the African business at about $6 billion, Bloomberg News reported last month. The soft-drink giant, which owns 66.5% of the bottling company, didn’t specify how much of its stake it intends to sell.Earlier: Coca-Cola Is Said to Consider Options for $6 Billion Africa UnitCoke is grappling with the commodity inflation pressures that are affecting other manufacturers, Chief Financial Officer John Murphy said in an interview.While consumer prices may start to rise this quarter, the company is “well-hedged” to withstand much of the cost pressure in the near term, he said. “We think it’s manageable this year; it’s really a 2022 challenge.”Aluminum CostsMost relevant to the soda maker will be higher costs in plastic and aluminum, including can-supply challenges in the U.S., he said. That should abate in 2022, though, with more supply becoming available.Coke is also seeing increases in high-fructose corn syrup and coffee. The company plans to manage those higher costs with supply-chain productivity and pricing, Murphy said.“Pricing decisions and hedging decisions are actually local decisions,” he said. “We will be working closely with our bottling partners all around the world to come up with the optimal solutions that could happen starting in the second quarter.”Coke reaffirmed its forecast for organic sales percentage growth of high single digits in 2021 and comparable earnings-per-share expansion of high single digits to low double digits. The company slightly trimmed its expectations for the impact of currency benefits on net revenue and comparable earnings.(Updates with share trading in sixth paragraph, adds chart.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- HSBC Holdings Plc’s head of technology mergers and acquisitions in Asia Jeremy Choy is joining Chinese home appliance giant Midea Group Co. as its chief financial officer.Midea announced Choy’s appointment on Monday, confirming an earlier Bloomberg News report. Choy, 39, is replacing Helmut Zodl, who left the Chinese company earlier this year to become the CFO of General Electric Co.’s health care business.The Hong Kong-based veteran dealmaker is taking up the job as Midea seeks to diversify from its traditional home appliances business. The Chinese company, which focuses on making air conditioners, refrigerators and washing machines, is looking to tap into technology-driven areas such as smart living and the so called Internet-of-Things.For his new role, Choy will be based at Midea’s headquarters in the southern Chinese city of Foshan, people familiar with the matter have said.Choy joined HSBC in June 2019 from China Renaissance Holdings Ltd., where he was the head of M&A, according to his LinkedIn profile. He previously worked for JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Goldman Sachs Group Inc.Midea’s founder and largest shareholder He Xiangjian does not hold a management role nor do his relatives -- a rare occurrence for a Chinese family-owned company.The company has grown via acquisitions including Kuka AG in 2017, in a deal that valued the German robot maker at 4.6 billion euros ($5.5 billion). That same year, it bought majority stakes in Toshiba Corp.’s home appliances business and Clivet SpA, an Italian maker of air conditioners, for undisclosed amounts.More recent deals include its 13-billion-yuan ($2 billion) purchase of Chinese appliances maker Wuxi Little Swan Co. in 2019. In December 2020, it entered the elevator business with the purchase of Winone Elevator Co. Earlier this year, it agreed to buy a 29% stake in Beijing Wandong Medical Technology Co.Choy’s move would follow those of other high-profile bankers joining large companies as CFOs. Peter Enns has joined property-casualty insurer Chubb Ltd. after more than 20 years in investment banking, most recently as global co-head of investment banking coverage at HSBC based in Hong Kong. Last year, Credit Suisse Group AG technology banker Alain Lam left the Swiss bank to join Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi Corp.(Updates with Midea’s exchange filing throughout the story.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Dogecoin briefly replaced XRP as the fourth-largest coin early Monday.
(Bloomberg) -- It took Ardian SAS just two days in February to buy German laboratories company GBA Group.That’s fast work even in a year when some of the biggest auctions, including the multibillion-dollar sales of software firm Unit4 NV and laboratories group Cerba HealthCare, have been sealed in double-quick time, according to half a dozen buyout executives and advisers.In a fiercely competitive market for assets, private equity firms are learning that the key to winning is not just about price, it’s about how quickly they are prepared to spend. This is leading to an increase in those opting to approach targets early or pre-empt sales processes that typically comprise two to three bidding rounds.“For buyers, it’s not just about the price any more with ever-rising valuations,” said Simona Maellare, global co-head of UBS Group AG’s alternative capital group. “It is becoming an execution game, and those who are faster win.”With GBA, Ardian wasted no time in heading rivals off at the pass to take a majority stake alongside the group’s management and existing backer Quadriga Capital. A month later, German ophthalmic lens-maker Rodenstock skipped an auction process altogether to sell to Apax Partners.Private equity firms spent $129 billion on company takeovers in the first quarter, the most for any corresponding period since before the 2008 financial crisis, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Opportunities stemming from the Covid-19 pandemic, cheap credit and companies carving out units to clean up their balance sheets are all fueling dealmaking.Sellers’ MarketAt the same time, buyout houses are stocked with record amounts of uninvested capital, and yield-hungry investors are eager to see it put to work. This is all creating a sellers’ market, bankers say.“There is a ton of money in the system across asset classes,” said Matthew Rosedale, head of financial sponsors for Europe, the Middle East and Africa at Jefferies Financial Group Inc. “The price for quality businesses is high regardless.”In such an environment, opening the books to an eager private equity firm can help a company avoid the time and expense of an auction process without sacrificing the value that its competitive tension is designed to bring. On the flip side, it could make it harder to attract other buyers if those talks fall apart as questions may be raised about what was wrong with an asset.Hot SpotsThe technology and health-care sectors are offering particularly fertile ground for quick deals this year.EQT AB pre-empted the competition and reached an agreement to buy Cerba for about 4.5 billion euros ($5.4 billion). Montagu Private Equity did the same with its roughly $700 million purchase of U.K. enterprise software developer ITRS Group Ltd., while Insight Partners completed a deal for one of its portfolio companies in just three weeks when it snapped up Dotmatics Ltd. for 500 million pounds ($687 million), Bloomberg News reported previously.“How you secure deals? It is by delivering speed and certainty,” Rosedale said. “Pre-empting a deal is en vogue these days and it is not going away soon.”The rush to transact has also seen investment firms outbid strategic buyers, which can normally afford to offer more due to potential synergies. Bain Capital and Cinven caught rivals flatfooted in February with a multibillion-dollar takeover of Lonza Group AG’s specialty ingredients unit, which had drawn interest from German chemicals group Lanxess AG and Malaysian oil producer Petronas, as well as buyout firms Partners Group Holding AG and Carlyle Group Inc.Representatives for the private equity firms involved in the deals declined to comment or couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.Stealth ModeFor fast-acting buyers, the secret to success often relies on keeping their intentions hidden from the wider market. Seeking debt funding for buyouts could alert rivals, as banks have an interest in triggering auctions, which offer more chances to win advisory and financing roles. One way around this is for private equity firms to first guarantee financing themselves and pull together a loan package later, even if that strategy is more risky.“People are doing deals now where they take over the existing debt without refinancing it,” said Eamon Devlin, partner at MJ Hudson Group Plc. “People closing deals quickly will use equity and then get financing post transaction.”Other hazards include getting used as leverage by seemingly enthusiastic sellers to tease out rival bidders. CVC Capital Partners thought a deal had been agreed with family-owned sandal maker Birkenstock, only to lose out to a surprise counterbid from L Catterton, the private equity backed by luxury retailer LVMH.Bypassing formal sale processes can be a sign of a maturing market, with buyout firms studying ripening assets ahead of time so they can better convince their investment committees to move quickly. The fact that many companies, such as Rodenstock, have had multiple private equity owners means buyers often have better insights on targets than in previous decades.Despite that perceived level of comfort, there’s always the chance an overly aggressive pursuit could lead to assigning a value or capital structure that leaves a business exposed in a downturn.“The skill is knowing for which deals it is reasonable to run fast, and which deals require more diligence and caution,” said David Walker, a partner at law firm Latham & Watkins LLP. “In such a hot market, it is inevitable that some will get their fingers burnt.”(Adds details of Lonza specialty ingredients deal in 13th paragraph)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Dogecoin (CRYPTO: DOGE) has been hard to ignore lately, as the meme-based cryptocurrency rose to become the sixth-largest with over $46 billion in market cap. What Happened: With 7,000% year-to-date returns and considerable outperformance against several top cryptocurrencies, DOGE’s appeal to retail investors has steadily been on the rise. However, several crypto influencers and traders have cautioned against going “all-in” on DOGE, citing concerns of a few large holders controlling the majority of its supply. See also: How to Buy DOGE Over 65% of Dogecoins are distributed among just 98 wallets across the world, while the single largest wallet holds 28% of all Dogecoins. In fact, just five wallets control 40% of the coin’s supply. Essentially, around 100 people control the entire $46 billion DOGE market. “The scam is simple - Hold on to Dogecoin till there is enough traction after it multiplies, dump all coins and cash out - Become instant billionaires,” said Akand Sitra of cryptocurrency risk management platform TRM Labs. Why It Matters: Sitra’s analysis of DOGE’s supply distribution was possible due to the nature of blockchain transactions, which are available for anyone to see on the open distributed ledger. Some on-chain analytics of the top DOGE holders led experts to believe that the cryptocurrency’s supply is concentrated among just a few holders. “The Dogecoin bubble will burst by the end of this year, easily,” said Sitra. Other traders in the space echoed this sentiment, calling it the reason why they will never be in DOGE “no matter the gains.” Why I'm not in $DOGE and will never be no matter the gains. https://t.co/jFVU2yQf03 — QuartzHands (@NFTiepie) April 19, 2021 At press time, DOGE was trading at $0.3976, up 32% overnight and 394% in the past seven days. DOGE holders were preparing for April 20, where a large group of retail traders has predicted the coin will touch $0.69. See Also: Dogecoin Creator Defends Meme Crypto's Supply: Doesn't 'Matter For Price' Image: Ivan Radic via Flickr See more from BenzingaClick here for options trades from BenzingaDeFi Blue Chip Season? Here's What Cryptos Coinbase Employees Are Buying Right NowInvestors In Disbelief As DOGE Becomes Top 5 Crypto With B Market Cap© 2021 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.
Air France-KLM may raise more capital to bolster its balance sheet as travel begins to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic in the coming months, its CEO said on Monday. Ben Smith, speaking at an online industry event as a 1.036 billion euros ($1.25 billion) share issue by the airline group nears completion, signalled it could move relatively quickly to seek further funds and reduce debt. "We do have heavy debt that is holding back our balance sheet, so this may have to get looked at again later in the year," he said, adding Air France-KLM was encouraged by European progress on vaccinations and digital health passes.
Stocks were down Monday morning even after encouraging comments on Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine from Dr. Anthony Fauci.
There's speculation about forgiving $10,000 or $50,000 per person, but no real plan yet.
These past 12 months have seen the S&P 500 return its best performance ever – an 80% gain as of the end of March. But are the good times wrapping up? Some historical data would suggest that the bulls will keep running. Since 1950, the market has seen 9 sustained, year-long runs with a rolling return of 30% or better on the S&P 500. These periods have seen an average one-year gain of 40% (the median has been 34%) – and none of these bull markets has ever ended in its second year. But investors should not expect the same sky-high returns in the coming 12 months as they have just seen in the last, according to Callie Cox, a senior investment strategist at Ally Invest. "[I]t's typical for the bull market to lose a little bit of steam going into year two... Expectations start rising and makes it harder for the market to… beat everybody's expectations. And that leaves a greater chance for disappointment. And to be clear, again, we're not calling for doom and gloom. We just think the market is due for a breather up in the next quarter or two," Cox opined. For investors focused on returns, the prospect of a lower sustained gain in share appreciation will naturally prompt a look at dividend stocks. Reliable, high-yield dividend payers offer a second income stream, to complement the share appreciation and ensure a solid return for investors. With this in mind, we used the TipRanks' database to pinpoint three stocks that meet a profile: a Strong Buy rating from Wall Street’s analysts and a dividend yield around 7%. Trinity Capital (TRIN) We’ll start with Trinity Capital, a venture debt company that makes capital available to start-ups. Trinity’s investment portfolio totals $494 million, spread over 96 companies. The company entered the public markets earlier this year, closing its IPO early in February. The opening saw 8.48 million shares become available for trading, and raised over $105 million after expenses. In its 4Q20 report – the company’s first quarterly report as a public entity, covering the last quarter as a private firm – Trinity showed net investment income of $5.3 million, with a per-share income of 29 cents. This was more than enough to fund the dividend, paid in December at 27 cents per share. Since then, Trinity has declared its 1Q21 dividend, raising the payment by a penny to 28 cents per common share. Trinity has a announced a policy of paying between 90% and 100% of taxable quarterly income in the dividend. At the current rate, the payment annualizes to $1.12 per share, and gives a yield of 7.6%. This is significantly higher than the average yield of 1.78% found among peers in the financial sector. In his note on the stock, Compass Point analyst Casey Alexander states his belief that Trinity has a clear path toward profitable returns. “TRIN operates within the attractive, growing venture debt ecosystem. As such we expect strong net portfolio growth followed by improved NII and increasing dividend distributions, with potential upside from equity/warrant investments,” Alexander noted. To this end, Alexander rates TRIN a Buy, and his $16.75 price target implies an upside of ~14% for the next 12 months. (To watch Alexander’s track record, click here) This newly public stock has already picked up 5 analyst reviews – and those break down to 4 Buys and 1 Hold, for a Strong Buy consensus rating. Trinity shares are selling for $14.74; their $16.46 average price target suggests the stock has ~12% upside potential. (See TRIN stock analysis on TipRanks) Energy Transfer LP (ET) With our second stock, Energy Transfer, we move into the energy midstream universe. Midstream is the necessary sector connecting hydrocarbon exploration and production with the end markets; midstreamers control the transport networks that move oil and gas products. ET has a network of assets in 38 states, which link three major oil and gas regions: North Dakota, Appalachia, and Texas-Oklahoma-Louisiana. The company’s assets include pipelines, terminals, and storage facilities for both crude oil and natural gas products. The big news for Energy Transfer, in recent weeks, comes from two sources. First, on April 9, reports came out that that the US Army Corps of Engineers is not likely to recommend shutting down the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL). This project, when complete, will move oil from Alberta’s oil sands region across the US to the Gulf Coast; the Biden Administration wants to shut it down for environmental reasons, but the industry is fighting to keep it. And second, two largest shareholders of Enable Midstream have approved a proposed merger, by which ET will acquire Enable. The merger is projected to be worth $7 billion. Earlier this year, Energy Transfer reported 4Q20 EPS of 19 cents per share, on income of $509 million. While down year-over-year from the 38 cent EPS reported in 4Q19, the recent result was a strong turnaround from the 29-cent net loss reported in Q3. The company’s income is supporting the current dividend of 15.25 cents per common share. This annualizes to 61 cents, and give a yield of 7.7%. The company has paid out a dividend every quarter since Q2 of 2006. Covering this stock for Credit Suisse, analyst Spiro Dounis writes: “We updated our model to reflect a mid-2021 completion of the Enable Midstream acquisition. We view the deal as accretive and see additional potential upside resulting from operational/commercial synergies. ET highlighted potential synergies around both ENBL’s natural gas and NGL assets, noting that gas synergies could be realized fairly quickly while NGL opportunities are more long-term as legacy contracts roll. Upwards of ~$100mm of NGL uplift over the next several years doesn’t appear unreasonable, in our view.” Dounis also notes that the main risk to the company arises from DAPL, which may still be shut down by the Biden Administration. Even so, he rates the stock an Outperform (i.e. Buy), with an $11 price target indicating a 39% one-year upside. (To watch Dounis’s track record, click here) Wall Street’s analysts can be a contentious lot – but when they agree on a stock, it’s a positive sign for investors to take note. That’s the case here, as all of the recent reviews on ET are Buys, making the consensus rating a unanimous Strong Buy. The analysts have given an average price target of $11.60, indicating ~47% upside from the current share price of $7.94. (See ET stock analysis on TipRanks) Oaktree Specialty Lending (OCSL) Last but not least is Oaktree Specialty Lending. This company is one of many specialty finance providers, making loans and credit available in the mid-market segment, to smaller firms that would otherwise have difficulty accessing capital. Last month, Oaktree Specialty Lending completed a merger with Oaktree Strategic Income Corporation (OCSI). The combined company, using OCSL’s name, has more than $2.2 billion in assets. Oaktree’s investment portfolio totals more than $1.7 billion, primarily in first and second liens, which make up 85% of the company’s investment allocations. Oaktree finished 2020 with its fiscal first quarter, ending December 31. In that quarter, the company increased its dividend payment by 9%, to 12 cents per share, or 48 cents per share annualized. At this rate, the dividend yields 7.25% -- and marks the third quarter in a row of a dividend increase. Oaktree has kept up reliable dividend payments for more than three years. Among the bulls is Kyle Joseph, a 5-star analyst with Jefferies, who puts a Buy rating and an $8 price target on this stock. His target implies room for 20% upside potential in the next 12 months. (To watch Joseph’s track record, click here) “OCSL's conservative strategy in recent years has ultimately paid off, as the BDC is deploying dry powder into higher-yielding investments. Credit performance remained solid through the MRQ, while fundamentals are encouraging… We believe the BDC has sufficient liquidity to support near-term opportunities and believe the company is positioned to take advantage of the recent economic volatility, which was particularly highlighted by the recent 9% increase in the quarterly distribution... In the longer term, we believe OCSL represents an attractive investment,” Joseph wrote. Overall, OCSL has received 3 recent Buy reviews, making the analyst consensus rating a Strong Buy. The stock is currently trading at $6.66 and its average price target of $7.33 indicates ~10% upside from that level. (See OCSL stock analysis on TipRanks) To find good ideas for dividend stocks trading at attractive valuations, visit TipRanks’ Best Stocks to Buy, a newly launched tool that unites all of TipRanks’ equity insights. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the featured analysts. The content is intended to be used for informational purposes only. It is very important to do your own analysis before making any investment.
The IRS commissioner now says the monthly payments to families will indeed start in July.
GameStop shares were on a tear early Monday, as Kieth "RoaringKitty" Gill announced he was doubling his stake in the firm and CEO George Sherman said he is stepping down.
The Milwaukee, Wisconsin-based company said retail sales, a measure of demand at its dealerships, surged 30% to 32,800 motorcycles in North America in the first quarter, its first increase in six years. Since the middle of last year, the Milwaukee, Wisconsin-based company has recalibrated its strategy by focusing on big bikes, traditional markets such as the United States and Europe, as well as older and wealthier customers. In February, the motorcycle maker unveiled a new turnaround plan, targeting low double-digit earnings growth through 2025.
(Bloomberg) -- Russian President Vladimir Putin is likely to respond to the latest round of U.S. sanctions threats as he has to past ones: by speeding his drive to make Russia’s economy more self-sufficient.In the seven years since Russia’s annexation of Crimea, Putin’s government and central bank have stripped back the country’s exposure to dollars, shifted assets out of the U.S. and sold a smaller share of its debt to foreigners.“The Americans are saying: be careful or we could do more, but Russia is just going to continue down the path toward economic autarky,” said Elina Ribakova, deputy chief economist at the Institute of International Finance in Washington.The administration of U.S. President Joe Biden is keeping the threat of sanctions hanging over Russia even after a sweeping round of penalties imposed last week. On Sunday, the U.S. warned of “consequences” if jailed opposition activist Alexey Navalny dies in prison.These four charts show how Putin has responded to past rounds of sanctions by increasing Russia’s economic isolation.The share of gold in Russia’s $581 billion international reserves jumped above dollars for the first time on record last year following a multi-year drive to reduce exposure to U.S. assets. The precious metal made up 24% of the central bank’s stockpile as of the end of September 2020, the latest date for which the breakdown is available. The share of dollar assets was 22%, down from more than 40% in 2018.That trend also shows up in the share of Russia’s international reserves held in the U.S., which plummeted to just under 7% by the end of September, down from about 30% before the Crimea annexation. Most of the shift happened in the second quarter of 2018 just after sanctions on aluminum giant United Co. Rusal revealed how vulnerable Russia was to sanctions.What Our Economists Say...Russia’s resilience to successive waves of sanctions provides a false sense of security. With the U.S. running out of options, the next round could be more disruptive, and the measures already in place are holding back trade and investment.-- Scott Johnson, Bloomberg EconomicsOf course, there’s only so much that Russia can do without cutting itself off entirely from the global economy. But officials in Washington are also restrained by the fact that if they go too far (as they did with the Rusal sanctions that were later revoked), they risk sending tremors through global markets.Acting on a pledge by Putin to “de-dollarize” trade, Russia has been slowly cutting back on use of the greenback in its exports with the European Union, China and India. The euro has almost overtaken the dollar in Russia’s trade with the EU and has already surpassed it in exports to China. About two-thirds of Russia’s exports to India, meanwhile, are paid for in rubles.How Virus-Panicked Markets Showed Dollar’s Still King: QuickTakeLast week’s penalties included a ban on purchases of bonds on the primary market, so the next big targets could be secondary-market debt and Russian banks’ access to the financial messaging system used for most international money transfers. Russia is already looking for alternatives to the system, known as SWIFT, to make itself less vulnerable, though attempts so far haven’t led to much.One reason the Finance Ministry wasn’t too concerned about the latest sanctions measure on government debt is that Russia has mostly been selling to local banks at its weekly auctions anyway. Borrowing was ramped up during the pandemic even though foreign demand was weak, which increased the overall size of the market and pushed down the share of foreigners.U.S. banks can still buy new debt on the secondary market after the penalties come into force in mid-June. Russia is “well positioned” for a near term market disruption because it has a high cash buffer and demand from local banks is “robust,” Fitch Ratings said in a research note published late on Friday.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
The price of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies was climbing on Monday, after a rough weekend that resulted in the biggest drop since February.
(Bloomberg) -- A planned $3.1 billion merger of two Australian miners is set to create one of the world’s biggest producers of lithium products key to meeting fast-growing global demand for electric vehicle batteries.The deal between Orocobre Ltd. and Galaxy Resources Ltd. is the biggest mining sector deal of the year so far, according to Bloomberg data, with shares of both companies closing at the highest in three years in Sydney. The merger would create the world’s fifth-biggest producer of lithium chemicals, the refined form of the raw materials that are used to make electric vehicle batteries.Miners to battery makers have rushed to secure lithium supply amid expectations the EV frenzy will create a structural deficit as soon as this year, and prices are already roaring back after a three-year slump. Battery demand is expected to surge tenfold by 2030, according to BloombergNEF, as the global clean-energy transition accelerates.The new company “is going to be a globally relevant player in terms of lithium chemical production,” said Reg Spencer, head of mining research at Canaccord Genuity Australia Ltd. He said that it could grow to be number three producer by 2025 if all growth projects go ahead.The A$4 billion deal values Galaxy at about A$3.53 a share, a 2.2% discount to Friday’s close, and has the backing of both company boards. Orocobre’s Chief Executive Officer Martin Perez de Solay will head the new group.Orocobre will offer 0.569 of its shares for every Galaxy share and will own 54.2% of the merged company, with Galaxy holding 45.8%. Orocobre was advised on the deal by UBS AG, while Galaxy’s adviser was Standard Chartered Plc. The deal is targeted for completion in mid August 2021.Diverse AssetsThe merged group, which has yet to be formally named, will have its headquarters in Buenos Aires, but its primary share listing will remain in Australia.The deal gives the companies a geographically diversified set of assets. Orocobre sells lithium carbonate from its Olaroz operation in Argentina, while Galaxy has a mine in Australia and growth projects in Canada and South America.Lithium raw materials are most commonly extracted at brine operations which pump liquid from underground reservoirs into vast evaporation ponds, or in traditional hard rock mines. China is the biggest player in electric vehicle batteries, with the majority of the world’s production capacity, and has a stranglehold over processing of the required commodities.The growth profile of the combined group’s existing assets put it on track to grab a 10% share of the lithium market over the next five to seven years, Perez de Solay said in an interview, backed by “a strong balance sheet that will enable us not only to deliver those projects but to continue to grow.” Top global lithium producers currently include Sociedad Quimica y Minera de Chile SA and Albemarle Corp.Argentina RiskCanaccord’s Spencer said there were risks in having the largest part of an operation in Argentina, given its history of geo-political and financial volatility, although Orocobre’s local management team had so far proven adept at navigating those risks.“From Galaxy’s perspective, we were looking for a partner which had deep in-country Argentinian experience and we’ve got that in Orocobre,” said Simon Hay, Galaxy’s CEO, who will take on the role of president of international business in the new organization. The merger will help to de-risk Galaxy’s Sal de Vida growth project in the South American country, he said.(Updates to add lithium chemicals and processing information in second, ninth paragraphs.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Global oil markets are stressed, not only due to OPEC+ or Iran JCPOA issues but also because international financials are predicting gloomy pictures for oil demand.
More employers are actively recruiting job candidates, even for low- and middle-level white collar jobs as fewer answer ads during COVID crisis.
When Robinhood suddenly set buying restrictions at the height of the GameStop trading frenzy in the early months of 2021, users reacted with fury. April19 is the initial court date following a judicial panel’s decision to bunch together nearly 40 lawsuits — and possibly more — in front of one Miami federal judge who will handle the “multi-district litigation.”