News Summary: October 12-16

News for the Week of 10/12/2015 – 10/16/2015

by David Abuaf InvestmentManager, RJFS

 

Government / Political / Economic

 

1.     Tehran fired a new ballistic missile, even as its parliament ratified the outlines of a nuclear deal.

·       The WH said the US has “strong indications” that Iran violated UN resolutions with its missile test over the weekend. I mean, I don’t get it, Israel has been talking about how bad Iran is for decades, and now we just have “strong indications”?

2.     Voters in Guinea lined up to elect a president for only the second time in their country’s history.

3.     Brazil’s lawmakers moved to oust the powerful head of the lower house of Congress for alleged corruption.

4.     Dutch investigators probing the downing of the Malaysian Air flight said a Russian-made missile fired from eastern Ukraine hit the jet.

5.     A global effort to prevent cyber weapons from reaching malicious regimes is at risk of coming apart amid objections from US firms.

6.     The BoE held firm on a law that banks segregate retail and investment banking operations.

7.     Obama is dropping plans to withdraw nearly all US troops from Afghanistan amid pressure at home and abroad, saying at least 5,500 will remain in 2017.

8.     Presidential candidates in both parties are burning through cash about 25% faster than in prior elections.

9.     Scottish prosecutors requested Libya’s help in gaining access to two suspects in the Lockerbie bombing.

 

General Markets / Economic

 

1.     Many Central Bankers at the IMF meeting want the Fed to raise rates, saying reducing uncertainty would help emerging markets.

·       Right, because the world is in such pleasant harmony that focusing on helping “emerging markets” is really what is driving such commentary!

2.     Nearly half of all retailers offer free return shipping for online purchases. But Macy’s doesn’t!

3.     Myanmar said its stock exchange will begin operations in December.

4.     US consumer prices fell in September for a second month, held down by lower gasoline prices.

5.     Prospects for a Fed rate increase this year are waning in the wake of lackluster readings on spending, inflation and jobs (see bullet point #4, above, for inflation).

 

Company News

 

1.     Dell and SivlerLake arebuying EMC for $67B in cash and stock, in the biggest tech deal ever.

2.     AB InBev sweetened its takeover proposal for SABMiller, valuing the rival brewer at $103.3B.

·       SABMiller said the board would recommend that shareholders approve AB InBev’s new offer at $104.2B.

3.     GE agreed to sell the bulk of its US commercial lending and leasing business to Wells Fargo.

4.     Twitter will cut up to 8% of its global workforce in its first mass layoff.

5.     A federal probe of VW was joined by Detroit’s US attorney and the Justice Departments’ Fraud Section.

  

Interesting Stories

 

1.     Kate Sanders was awarded more than $1,200 for an incident at last year’s London Zoo Christmas party. The Meerkat expert had been attacked with a wine glass by one of the zoo’s monkey handlers; the two had been squabbling over a handsome llama keeper.

2.     This week, Alaska became the second state, alongside side South Dakota, to rename Columbus Day. In Alaska it is Indigenous People’s Day and in SD it is Native American Day.

3.     Playboy has decided to no longer run photos of nude women as they have become “de passe”.

4.     Jennifer Connell, a Connecticut woman sued her 8 year old nephew after he hugged her!

5.     15 Colorado McDonald franchises have announced marijuana friendly smoking sections!

 

 

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