News Archive


Toshiba signs deal to sell chip unit to Bain-led group for $18 billion

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s Toshiba Corp (6502.T) said on Thursday it had signed an $18 billion deal to sell its chip unit to a consortium led by Bain Capital LP, overcoming a key – albeit not its last – hurdle as it scrambles for funds to stave off a potential delisting.

The sale of the unit – the world’s second biggest producer of NAND chips – was agreed last week but the signing was delayed because consortium member Apple Inc (AAPL.O) demanded new terms on chip supply in return for funding, sources familiar with the matter have said.

Bain’s consortium also includes South Korean chipmaker SK Hynix (000660.KS), as well as Dell Inc [DI.UL], Seagate Technology Plc (STX.O) and Kingston Technology.

Pressure from the Japanese government, changing alliances among suitors and a slew of revised bids has drawn out the auction over nine months – heightening the risk that the deal may not close before the end of Japan’s financial year in March as regulatory reviews usually take at least six months.

If the deal does not close before then, Toshiba – hurt by liabilities at is now bankrupt nuclear unit Westinghouse – is likely to end a second consecutive year in negative net worth, putting pressure on the Tokyo Stock Exchange to strip it of its listing status.

The sale also faces legal challenges from Western Digital (WDC.O), Toshiba’s chip venture partner and rejected suitor, which is seeking an injunction to block any deal that does not have its consent.

Western Digital, one of world’s leading makers of hard disk drives, paid some $16 billion last year to acquire SanDisk, Toshiba’s chip joint venture partner since 2000. It sees chips as a key pillar of growth and is desperate to keep the business out of the hands of rival chipmakers.

Reporting by Kentaro Hamada, Taro Fuse and Makiko Yamazaki; Writing by Naomi Tajitsu; Editing by Edwina Gibbs

Article source: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/businessNews/~3/ODDgye2_Fl8/toshiba-signs-deal-to-sell-chip-unit-to-bain-led-group-for-18-billion-idUSKCN1C30P1

Bitcoin blow as fund drops U.S. exchange application

(Reuters) – An effort to allow investors to trade digital currencies as easily as stocks in the United States stumbled when the backer of a bitcoin fund said an application to list on an exchange had been withdrawn.

Grayscale Investments LLC said Intercontinental Exchange Inc’s (ICE.N) NYSE Arca exchange withdrew a request with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to list its Bitcoin Investment Trust (GBTC.PK), in the latest setback to the digital currency.

“Although digital currency market regulation continues to rapidly evolve, at this time Grayscale does not believe there have been enough regulatory developments to prompt the SEC to approve the … application,” the fund’s issuers said in a statement. They said they would continue their dialogue with regulators, but could not predict when they may get approved.

The Bitcoin Investment Trust is currently traded “over the counter” in less formal exchanges than those used for typical stock transactions and at far higher prices than the bitcoin it holds. On Wednesday, shares closed at $739.50, while the bitcoin it holds were worth less than $373, according to the issuer.

The shares are nonetheless trading up 508 percent this year, more even than the meteoric rise of the digital currency, which JPMorgan Chase Co CEO Jamie Dimon this month called “a fraud” that will blow up.

Bitcoin is a virtual currency that can be used to move money around the world quickly and with relative anonymity, without the need for a central authority, such as a bank or government.

Approval from the SEC could bring more investors into the asset, yet the regulatory agency has expressed doubts over the fact that the bitcoin market is unregulated.

In March, the SEC denied two applications to list bitcoin products on exchanges, including one backed by investors Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, the twins best known for a feud with Facebook Inc (FB.O) founder Mark Zuckerberg which was dramatized in the 2010 film “The Social Network.”

CBOE Holdings Inc’s (CBOE.O) Bats exchange, which wanted to host the Winklevoss-backed exchange traded fund (ETF), has appealed the SEC’s ruling.

A proposal to list a product based on ether, a rival digital currency, was pulled earlier this month.

Regulators have not yet weighed in on two other efforts to bring a digital currency to U.S. exchanges. Similar products already trade in Europe and one is being considered in Canada.

NYSE and the SEC were not immediately reachable for comment.

Reporting by Trevor Hunnicutt in New York and Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier and Alexander Smith

Article source: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/businessNews/~3/46z3UALBkOM/bitcoin-blow-as-fund-drops-u-s-exchange-application-idUSKCN1C30CK

Bitcoin blow as fund drops U.S. exchange application

(Reuters) – An effort to allow investors to trade digital currencies as easily as stocks in the United States stumbled when the backer of a bitcoin fund said an application to list on an exchange had been withdrawn.

Grayscale Investments LLC said Intercontinental Exchange Inc’s (ICE.N) NYSE Arca exchange withdrew a request with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to list its Bitcoin Investment Trust (GBTC.PK), in the latest setback to the digital currency.

“Although digital currency market regulation continues to rapidly evolve, at this time Grayscale does not believe there have been enough regulatory developments to prompt the SEC to approve the … application,” the fund’s issuers said in a statement. They said they would continue their dialogue with regulators, but could not predict when they may get approved.

The Bitcoin Investment Trust is currently traded “over the counter” in less formal exchanges than those used for typical stock transactions and at far higher prices than the bitcoin it holds. On Wednesday, shares closed at $739.50, while the bitcoin it holds were worth less than $373, according to the issuer.

The shares are nonetheless trading up 508 percent this year, more even than the meteoric rise of the digital currency, which JPMorgan Chase Co CEO Jamie Dimon this month called “a fraud” that will blow up.

Bitcoin is a virtual currency that can be used to move money around the world quickly and with relative anonymity, without the need for a central authority, such as a bank or government.

Approval from the SEC could bring more investors into the asset, yet the regulatory agency has expressed doubts over the fact that the bitcoin market is unregulated.

In March, the SEC denied two applications to list bitcoin products on exchanges, including one backed by investors Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, the twins best known for a feud with Facebook Inc (FB.O) founder Mark Zuckerberg which was dramatized in the 2010 film “The Social Network.”

CBOE Holdings Inc’s (CBOE.O) Bats exchange, which wanted to host the Winklevoss-backed exchange traded fund (ETF), has appealed the SEC’s ruling.

A proposal to list a product based on ether, a rival digital currency, was pulled earlier this month.

Regulators have not yet weighed in on two other efforts to bring a digital currency to U.S. exchanges. Similar products already trade in Europe and one is being considered in Canada.

NYSE and the SEC were not immediately reachable for comment.

Reporting by Trevor Hunnicutt in New York and Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier and Alexander Smith

Article source: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/businessNews/~3/46z3UALBkOM/bitcoin-blow-as-fund-drops-u-s-exchange-application-idUSKCN1C30CK

Dollar, bond yields rise on Trump tax plan; Asia stocks fall

TOKYO (Reuters) – The dollar and U.S. bond yields rose on Thursday after President Donald Trump proposed the biggest U.S. tax overhaul in three decades and as strong U.S. economic data supported the case for a Federal Reserve rate hike later this year.

The dollar’s strength pressured many emerging market currencies and bonds, helping drag down MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan .MIAPJ0000PUS 0.4 percent to one-month lows. South Korean 10-year yields hit a 2-year high.

In contrast, Japan’s Nikkei .N225 rose 0.55 percent, taking cues from gains on Wall Street, where the Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI rose 0.25 percent while the SP 500 .SPX gained 0.41 percent.

Small-cap U.S. shares, seen as benefiting the most from the proposed tax cuts, soared, with the Russel 2000 small-cap index notching a record high, rising 1.9 percent for its biggest one-day gain in almost six months.

“The fact that Trump made the tax proposal was seen as a step forward,” said Hirokazu Kabeya, chief global strategist at Daiwa Securities.

Trump offered to lower corporate income tax rates, cut taxes for small businesses and reduce the top income tax rate for individuals.

Also helping to boost the dollar, the plan included lower one-time low tax rates for companies to repatriate profits accumulated overseas, which analysts say would lead to a temporary phase of sizable dollar buying.

European stock futures suggested gains for those markets too, with FTSE futures FFIc1 up 0.18 percent and German DAX futures FDXc1 up 0.25 percent.

Trump’s tax proposal faces an uphill battle in Congress, however, with his own party divided, and the plan already prompting criticism that it favors companies and the rich and could add trillions of dollars to the national debt.

“It is hard to expect this proposal to pass the Congress smoothly. We have to pay attention to how the Republicans will view this,” said Takafumi Yamawaki, chief fixed income strategist at J.P. Morgan Securities.

“It is possible that the net fiscal spending will be smaller than what the stock markets expect,” he added.

The euro EUR= hit a six-week low of $1.1717 on Wednesday as the dollar broadly gained, and last traded at $1.1722, having shed 1.9 percent so far this week.

The dollar shot up to a 2-1/2-month high of 113.26 yen JPY= the previous day before stepping back to 113.08 yen Thursday.

The Canadian dollar CAD=D4 extended its losses, suffering its biggest drop in eight months on Wednesday, after Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz dampened expectations for further interest rate hikes this year.

Canada’s loonie fell to C$1.2469 to the U.S. dollar, its lowest in a month.

The dollar strengthened against many emerging market currencies while gold XAU= hit a one-month low of $1,281.5 per ounce.

“I don’t see any changes to growth stories in emerging economies so I would assume selling in them will prove temporary, unless yields in the developed world keep rising sharply,” said a senior currency trader at a major Japanese bank.

U.S. bond yields jumped with the yield on two-year notes US2YT=RR rising to a nine-year high of 1.49 percent in anticipation of a rate rise in December.

Comments from Fed Chair Janet Yellen that the Fed needs to continue with gradual rate hikes have cemented expectations for policy tightening by year-end.

New orders for key U.S.-made capital goods grew more than expected in August, helping to boost optimism in the U.S. economy’s outlook.

Yields on longer-dated bonds soared as Trump’s tax proposal stoked worries about fiscal deterioration. U.S. municipal bonds were also sold for the same reason.

The 10-year yield rose to 2.357 percent US10YT=RR, its highest in more than two months, compared to this week’s low of 2.214 percent while the 30-year bond yield US30YT=RR climbed to 2.901 percent after having risen 9 basis points on Wednesday – the biggest one-day rise in almost seven months.

Japanese yields rose in tandem with benchmark 10-year futures 2JGBv1 set for their biggest fall in three months, partly driven by expectation of fiscal easing after Prime Minister Shinzo Abe called a snap election expected on Oct.22.

Oil prices hovered a tad below the peaks hit earlier this week as the market consolidated after a strong rally this month.

Brent LCOc1 futures traded at $57.78 a barrel, down from Tuesday’s 26-month peak of $59.49.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude (WTI) CLc1 fetched $52.05 per barrel, below Tuesday’s five-month high of $52.43 after oil stockpiles in the world’s top consumer unexpectedly drew down, with refiners coming back online following Hurricane Harvey last month.

Reporting by Hideyuki Sano; Editing by Shri Navaratnam and Eric Meijer

Article source: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/businessNews/~3/pVDO2kM6EEw/dollar-bond-yields-rise-on-trump-tax-plan-asia-stocks-fall-idUSKCN1C303P

Dollar, bond yields rise on Trump tax plan; Asia stocks fall

TOKYO (Reuters) – The dollar and U.S. bond yields rose on Thursday after President Donald Trump proposed the biggest U.S. tax overhaul in three decades and as strong U.S. economic data supported the case for a Federal Reserve rate hike later this year.

The dollar’s strength pressured many emerging market currencies and bonds, helping drag down MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan .MIAPJ0000PUS 0.4 percent to one-month lows. South Korean 10-year yields hit a 2-year high.

In contrast, Japan’s Nikkei .N225 rose 0.55 percent, taking cues from gains on Wall Street, where the Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI rose 0.25 percent while the SP 500 .SPX gained 0.41 percent.

Small-cap U.S. shares, seen as benefiting the most from the proposed tax cuts, soared, with the Russel 2000 small-cap index notching a record high, rising 1.9 percent for its biggest one-day gain in almost six months.

“The fact that Trump made the tax proposal was seen as a step forward,” said Hirokazu Kabeya, chief global strategist at Daiwa Securities.

Trump offered to lower corporate income tax rates, cut taxes for small businesses and reduce the top income tax rate for individuals.

Also helping to boost the dollar, the plan included lower one-time low tax rates for companies to repatriate profits accumulated overseas, which analysts say would lead to a temporary phase of sizable dollar buying.

European stock futures suggested gains for those markets too, with FTSE futures FFIc1 up 0.18 percent and German DAX futures FDXc1 up 0.25 percent.

Trump’s tax proposal faces an uphill battle in Congress, however, with his own party divided, and the plan already prompting criticism that it favors companies and the rich and could add trillions of dollars to the national debt.

“It is hard to expect this proposal to pass the Congress smoothly. We have to pay attention to how the Republicans will view this,” said Takafumi Yamawaki, chief fixed income strategist at J.P. Morgan Securities.

“It is possible that the net fiscal spending will be smaller than what the stock markets expect,” he added.

The euro EUR= hit a six-week low of $1.1717 on Wednesday as the dollar broadly gained, and last traded at $1.1722, having shed 1.9 percent so far this week.

The dollar shot up to a 2-1/2-month high of 113.26 yen JPY= the previous day before stepping back to 113.08 yen Thursday.

The Canadian dollar CAD=D4 extended its losses, suffering its biggest drop in eight months on Wednesday, after Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz dampened expectations for further interest rate hikes this year.

Canada’s loonie fell to C$1.2469 to the U.S. dollar, its lowest in a month.

The dollar strengthened against many emerging market currencies while gold XAU= hit a one-month low of $1,281.5 per ounce.

“I don’t see any changes to growth stories in emerging economies so I would assume selling in them will prove temporary, unless yields in the developed world keep rising sharply,” said a senior currency trader at a major Japanese bank.

U.S. bond yields jumped with the yield on two-year notes US2YT=RR rising to a nine-year high of 1.49 percent in anticipation of a rate rise in December.

Comments from Fed Chair Janet Yellen that the Fed needs to continue with gradual rate hikes have cemented expectations for policy tightening by year-end.

New orders for key U.S.-made capital goods grew more than expected in August, helping to boost optimism in the U.S. economy’s outlook.

Yields on longer-dated bonds soared as Trump’s tax proposal stoked worries about fiscal deterioration. U.S. municipal bonds were also sold for the same reason.

The 10-year yield rose to 2.357 percent US10YT=RR, its highest in more than two months, compared to this week’s low of 2.214 percent while the 30-year bond yield US30YT=RR climbed to 2.901 percent after having risen 9 basis points on Wednesday – the biggest one-day rise in almost seven months.

Japanese yields rose in tandem with benchmark 10-year futures 2JGBv1 set for their biggest fall in three months, partly driven by expectation of fiscal easing after Prime Minister Shinzo Abe called a snap election expected on Oct.22.

Oil prices hovered a tad below the peaks hit earlier this week as the market consolidated after a strong rally this month.

Brent LCOc1 futures traded at $57.78 a barrel, down from Tuesday’s 26-month peak of $59.49.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude (WTI) CLc1 fetched $52.05 per barrel, below Tuesday’s five-month high of $52.43 after oil stockpiles in the world’s top consumer unexpectedly drew down, with refiners coming back online following Hurricane Harvey last month.

Reporting by Hideyuki Sano; Editing by Shri Navaratnam and Eric Meijer

Article source: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/businessNews/~3/pVDO2kM6EEw/dollar-bond-yields-rise-on-trump-tax-plan-asia-stocks-fall-idUSKCN1C303P

Millionaires’ wealth reached record $63.5 trillion globally in 2016: study

HONG KONG (Reuters) – The number of millionaires in the world rose by nearly 8 percent last year to an all-time high of around 16.5 million people, with record total wealth of $63.5 trillion, according to a report by global consultancy firm Capgemini.

The wealth of high net worth individuals (HNWI) — which Capgemini defines as those with investable assets of $1 million or more, excluding the primary residence, collectibles and consumables — rose 8.2 percent on the year in 2016 and is on track to surpass $100 trillion by 2025.

Some 1.15 million people became millionaires last year, the report said.

The United States, Japan, Germany and China boast the highest numbers and together make up for almost two-thirds of the total.

In the United States, their ranks rose to 4.8 million from 4.46 million, while the number of millionaires in China rose to 1.13 million from just over 1 million.

The Asia-Pacific, Europe and North America contributed equally to the rise in wealth, with Russia, Brazil and Canada reversing course from declines a year ago, the report showed.

Russia, helped by a rebound in its stock market, saw both the number of its millionaires and their wealth grow by about 20 percent.

France overtook Britain in the top five in terms of the number of millionaires, helped by a recovery in real estate, while Sweden knocked Singapore — which saw a decline in its equity markets — out of top 25.

Surveys on the millionaires’ financial asset holdings show they held 31.1 percent in equities in the second quarter of 2017, compared with 24.8 percent in 2016.

Fixed income held steady at 18 percent, while cash grew to 27.3 percent from 23.5 percent.

Alternative investments, such as hedge funds, derivatives, foreign currency, commodities and private equity, fell to 9.7 percent from 15.7 percent.

The report did not dive into the reasons for the reallocation, but stronger global growth, coupled with hefty liquidity after years of unprecedented stimulus by global central banks, have pushed stock markets around the world to record highs.

On the other hand, investors are wary of geopolitical risks, with tensions growing between the United States and North Korea, and are uncertain about the consequences the U.S. Federal Reserve’s exit from unconventional stimulus might have on economies and markets.

Millionaires saw a 24.3 percent return on average on investment portfolios overseen by wealth managers.

Reporting by Marius Zaharia; Editing by Kim Coghill

Article source: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/businessNews/~3/bL0eJ_pRqcE/millionaires-wealth-reached-record-63-5-trillion-globally-in-2016-study-idUSKCN1C30L2

Millionaires’ wealth reached record $63.5 trillion globally in 2016: study

HONG KONG (Reuters) – The number of millionaires in the world rose by nearly 8 percent last year to an all-time high of around 16.5 million people, with record total wealth of $63.5 trillion, according to a report by global consultancy firm Capgemini.

The wealth of high net worth individuals (HNWI) — which Capgemini defines as those with investable assets of $1 million or more, excluding the primary residence, collectibles and consumables — rose 8.2 percent on the year in 2016 and is on track to surpass $100 trillion by 2025.

Some 1.15 million people became millionaires last year, the report said.

The United States, Japan, Germany and China boast the highest numbers and together make up for almost two-thirds of the total.

In the United States, their ranks rose to 4.8 million from 4.46 million, while the number of millionaires in China rose to 1.13 million from just over 1 million.

The Asia-Pacific, Europe and North America contributed equally to the rise in wealth, with Russia, Brazil and Canada reversing course from declines a year ago, the report showed.

Russia, helped by a rebound in its stock market, saw both the number of its millionaires and their wealth grow by about 20 percent.

France overtook Britain in the top five in terms of the number of millionaires, helped by a recovery in real estate, while Sweden knocked Singapore — which saw a decline in its equity markets — out of top 25.

Surveys on the millionaires’ financial asset holdings show they held 31.1 percent in equities in the second quarter of 2017, compared with 24.8 percent in 2016.

Fixed income held steady at 18 percent, while cash grew to 27.3 percent from 23.5 percent.

Alternative investments, such as hedge funds, derivatives, foreign currency, commodities and private equity, fell to 9.7 percent from 15.7 percent.

The report did not dive into the reasons for the reallocation, but stronger global growth, coupled with hefty liquidity after years of unprecedented stimulus by global central banks, have pushed stock markets around the world to record highs.

On the other hand, investors are wary of geopolitical risks, with tensions growing between the United States and North Korea, and are uncertain about the consequences the U.S. Federal Reserve’s exit from unconventional stimulus might have on economies and markets.

Millionaires saw a 24.3 percent return on average on investment portfolios overseen by wealth managers.

Reporting by Marius Zaharia; Editing by Kim Coghill

Article source: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/businessNews/~3/bL0eJ_pRqcE/millionaires-wealth-reached-record-63-5-trillion-globally-in-2016-study-idUSKCN1C30L2

Toyota to form electric car technology venture with Mazda

TOKYO (Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp (7203.T) is establishing a new venture to develop electric vehicle technology with partner Mazda Motor Corp (7261.T), seeking to catch up with rivals in an increasingly frenetic race to produce more battery-powered cars.

Policymakers in key markets like China are aggressively pushing a shift to electric cars over the next two to three decades, pressuring traditional automakers to crank up their electric vehicle (EV) plans – just as declining battery costs enable more power to be packed into cars.

Toyota said in a statement the new company will develop technology for a range of electric cars, including minivehicles, passenger cars, SUVs and light trucks.

Toyota will take a 90 percent stake in the joint venture, called EV Common Architecture Spirit Co Ltd, while Mazda and Denso Corp (6902.T), Toyota’s biggest supplier, will each take a 5 percent stake.

The plans build on a partnership announced in August when Japan’s biggest automaker agreed to take a 5 percent stake in Mazda and two said they would jointly develop affordable electric vehicle technologies.

After years of focusing on bringing hydrogen fuel cell vehicles to the market, Toyota last year set up a division to develop electric cars which is led by President Akio Toyoda, and said it plans to introduce EVs in China in the coming years.

Neither Toyota nor Mazda market fully electric passenger cars at the moment. Toyota has cited affordability and the limited range of battery-operated cars as obstacles to the mass popularization so far.

Mazda has an RD budget a fraction of Toyota‘s, which has made it difficult to develop electric cars on its own. Even so, it has said it plans to launch EVs in 2020.

Shares in Mazda were up 3 percent after the announcement, while those in Denso were up 1.5 percent. Toyota shares were flat.

Reporting by Maki Shiraki and Naomi Tajitsu; Additional reporting by Taiga Uranaka; Editing by Edwina Gibbs

Article source: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/businessNews/~3/LZiYhxLXEFg/toyota-to-form-electric-car-technology-venture-with-mazda-idUSKCN1C3071

Toyota to form electric car technology venture with Mazda

TOKYO (Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp (7203.T) is establishing a new venture to develop electric vehicle technology with partner Mazda Motor Corp (7261.T), seeking to catch up with rivals in an increasingly frenetic race to produce more battery-powered cars.

Policymakers in key markets like China are aggressively pushing a shift to electric cars over the next two to three decades, pressuring traditional automakers to crank up their electric vehicle (EV) plans – just as declining battery costs enable more power to be packed into cars.

Toyota said in a statement the new company will develop technology for a range of electric cars, including minivehicles, passenger cars, SUVs and light trucks.

Toyota will take a 90 percent stake in the joint venture, called EV Common Architecture Spirit Co Ltd, while Mazda and Denso Corp (6902.T), Toyota’s biggest supplier, will each take a 5 percent stake.

The plans build on a partnership announced in August when Japan’s biggest automaker agreed to take a 5 percent stake in Mazda and two said they would jointly develop affordable electric vehicle technologies.

After years of focusing on bringing hydrogen fuel cell vehicles to the market, Toyota last year set up a division to develop electric cars which is led by President Akio Toyoda, and said it plans to introduce EVs in China in the coming years.

Neither Toyota nor Mazda market fully electric passenger cars at the moment. Toyota has cited affordability and the limited range of battery-operated cars as obstacles to the mass popularization so far.

Mazda has an RD budget a fraction of Toyota‘s, which has made it difficult to develop electric cars on its own. Even so, it has said it plans to launch EVs in 2020.

Shares in Mazda were up 3 percent after the announcement, while those in Denso were up 1.5 percent. Toyota shares were flat.

Reporting by Maki Shiraki and Naomi Tajitsu; Additional reporting by Taiga Uranaka; Editing by Edwina Gibbs

Article source: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/businessNews/~3/LZiYhxLXEFg/toyota-to-form-electric-car-technology-venture-with-mazda-idUSKCN1C3071