GLOBAL MARKETS LIVE: Airbus, Nissan, Stanchart, Sony…
|04/09/2019 | 09:15 am|
The US has published a list of European products that could be hit with tariffs, Société Générale will cut jobs. Sony is once again welcoming a cumbersome shareholder, while Novartis is listing its subsidiary Alcon as of today. U.S equity-index futures head down, after Asian and European stocks progressed.
-S&P 500 futures down 0.1% to 2,894.75
-Brent Futures up 0.2% to $71.26/bbl
-Gold spot up 0.3% to $1,301.75
-US Dollar Index down 0.1% to 96.95
Customs duties. The United States has published a list of European products that are likely to be overtaxed, ranging from Airbus aircraft (planes and helicopters) to cheese, wines and ski equipment. In total, $11 billion is supposed to compensate for the losses that the Americans believe are due to illegal subsidies to Airbus. "This is totally unjustified," Airbus reacted in a statement to the media. The European group claimed to have taken "all necessary measures" to comply with the latest World Trade Organization (WTO) decision of May 2018. It said that Boeing has not demonstrated “any willingness” to comply with the WTO ruling of March 28, 2019 regarding the “massive subsidies” received by [the US group] “which are clearly in violation of WTO rules."
Debenhams in bankruptcy. The British department store chain Debenhams announced on Tuesday that it has filed for bankruptcy and its immediate takeover by its creditors, who will inject £200 million to revive it. Debenhams explained in a press release that it has adopted this special procedure that allows it to stay afloat and continue its activity. However, this decision was made at the cost of a reduction in shareholder participation and a major restructuring plan that would affect its 165 stores and 25,000 employees.
Ghosn’s plead. In a video broadcast in Japan, Carlos Ghosn claims his innocence and accuses Nissan executives of treason and conspiracy. At the request of the counsel of Renault Nissan's former strong man, the names of the defendants were cut off in the video. Nothing new at this stage.
Planned cuts. Société Générale confirmed the elimination of approximately 1,600 positions in its corporate and investment banking, international retail banking and international financial services businesses, including approximately 750 jobs in France. The main elements of this project were unveiled yesterday to employee representatives. The Red and Black Bank has promised to restructure after giving up its medium-term objectives.
StanChart will pay. Standard Chartered will pay just over $1 billion to shut down investigations in the United States and the United Kingdom into violations of US sanctions against Iran. The information, obtained by Reuters, should be confirmed this morning.
M&A under control. Novartis CEO plans to limit acquisitions to about 5% of the capitalization of the pharmaceutical giant, whose subsidiary Alcon enters the SMI on the day after its demerger. Vas Narasimhan, interviewed this morning in the Financial Times, intends to increase shareholder remuneration.
Third Point is back. Sony is on the rise after Reuters announced the arrival of the Third Point activist fund in the capital. It is rather a return, because Daniel Loeb's fund had already put pressure on the Japanese six years ago. Third Point would like to encourage Sony to think about the future of some of its divisions, including its film studios and semiconductors.
Purina is investing. Nestlé's animal division, Purina, will acquire a minority stake in the Independent Vetcare Group from EQT. However, the details of the transaction were kept secret. IVC operates a network of more than 1100 veterinary clinics and hospitals in 10 European countries.
In other news. Amazon is launching three renewable energy projects to power the servers of its AWS division. Fiat Chrysler will pay $110 million to close a lawsuit brought by American investors. The American Wynn Resorts proposes to buy the Australian Crown Resorts for $7.1 billion. Merck KGaA is offering $5.78 billion to buy Versum Materials, a better bid than Entegris'. Aramco's bond issue attracts an estimated demand of $60 billion, with an initial scheduled offer of $10 billion. Royal Dutch Shell plans to invest $300 million in ecosystem protection and restoration as part of its program to reduce its carbon footprint. Telenor will take control of DNA for €1.5 billion.