rand Vision for a New Beijing Financial District

August 27, 2013, 2:09 p.m. ET

Grand Vision for a New Beijing Financial District

Lize Project Defies Doubters With Plan to Build 80 Skyscrapers Over 20 Years

RICHARD SILK

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Lize would be transformed from one of Beijing’s least-developed districts.

BEIJING—A new financial center planned for Beijing, whose size would top London’s Square Mile and Manhattan’s financial district combined, aims to defy doubters on the sustainability of China’s real-estate boom and the stability of its overstretched banks. If completed as planned, the Lize Financial District on the southern outskirts of Beijing would provide between 8 million and 9.5 million square meters of new floor space, almost doubling the Chinese capital’s current stock of high-grade offices. Read more of this post

Lighting companies say they are struggling with fewer individual customers and shrinking sales because of recent government limits on the construction of new properties and restrictions on extravagant official galas

New policies dim lighting firms’ sales

Updated: 2013-08-28 07:58 Read more of this post

Real estate top wealth creator in S China

Real estate top wealth creator in S China

Updated: 2013-08-28 07:58

By Shi Jing in Shanghai ( China Daily)

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Despite the central government’s tightening policies in the property market, the real estate sector still generates the largest number of billionaires in southern China, according to the Hurun 2013 Pearl River Delta Region Rich List. Read more of this post

Son of Chinese general faces rape trial; raises anger over top families and elites

Son of Chinese general faces rape trial; raises anger over top families

Li Tianyi and his father Li Shuangjiang, a general of the Chinese People's Liberation Army who gained fame singing revolutional songs decades ago

6:13pm EDT

By Sui-Lee Wee

BEIJING (Reuters) – The teenage son of a prominent Chinese general goes on trial on Wednesday suspected of involvement in a gang rape in a case that has inflamed public anger at the offspring of the political elite who are widely seen as spoilt and reckless. Li Tianyi, 17, is among five men accused of sexually assaulting a woman in a Beijing hotel in February, according to state media. His father is General Li Shuangjiang of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), who is a singer known for performing patriotic songs on television shows and at official events. Li’s mother, Meng Ge, is a famous singer in the PLA. Read more of this post

Taobao offers moon insurance for Mid-Autumn Festival; Residents of cities of Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen can pay a premium of 20 yuan (US$3.24) and receive 50 yuan (US$8) from the insurer if they cannot see the moon

Taobao offers moon insurance for Mid-Autumn Festival

Xinhua

2013-08-27

People in 41 cities in China can insure their enjoyment of the full moon during the Mid-Autumn Festival from Monday. An internet-based insurance product was launched by Taobao Insurance under the Alibaba Group, China’s largest online shopping platform, together with Allianz China General Insurance Company. Internet users can insure themselves against inconveniences during their moon gazing at the Mid-Autumn Festival, and will be paid off if they cannot see the moon because of poor weather on the day. Residents of cities of Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen can pay a premium of 20 yuan (US$3.24) and receive 50 yuan (US$8) from the insurer if they cannot see the moon. Read more of this post

Tesla’s Chinese Wall

Tesla’s Chinese Wall – Economic Observer Online

By Geng Huili (耿慧丽) and Zhang Xu (张煦)
Issue 633 ,Aug 19, 2013  

The American electric car manufacturer Tesla Motors has plans to enter China by the end of the year, but that might be little more than a fantasy. According to Tesla Vice President George Blankenship, the company plans to open 25 new specialty stores in 2013, one of which will be in China. In fact, the brand has already rented floor space at the Beijing Parkview Green Shopping Center in busy a part of the capital. The 800-square meter location would be its largest in the world. However, Tesla seems to have overestimated the speed with which it could drive through China’s approval process. And even if it gets approval, a trademark dispute and heavy taxes could slow its entry to a crawl. According to the Beijing Administration for Industry and Commerce, Tesla established the wholly foreign-owned Tesla Car Sales (Beijing) Co., Ltd., (拓速乐汽车销售(北京)有限公司) on Nov 7, 2012 with registration capital of two million dollars. Read more of this post

Why TCM Products Are Seen as Poison Pills Abroad

08.27.2013 19:11

Why TCM Products Are Seen as Poison Pills Abroad

Health authorities around the world are issuing warnings about herbal treatments from China, a problem that will persist until the industry better explains side effects

By staff reporters Tian Yuan, He Chunmei and Wang Duan

(Beijing) – On August 20, Britain’s Medicines and Health Care Products Regulatory Agency issued a press release warning that extreme caution should be used with a number of traditional Chinese medicines (TCM) because they could contain dangerously high levels of toxins, including lead, mercury and arsenic. The release said the drugs are not authorized for sale in Britain, but can be bought on the Internet. “People are warned to exercise extreme caution when buying unlicensed medicines as they have not been assessed for safety and quality, and standards can vary widely,” it says. Read more of this post

Zhejiang investment projects underline China’s local debt crisis

Zhejiang investment projects underline China’s local debt crisis

Staff Reporter

2013-08-28

As many local governments in China have ramped up investment in urbanization and major construction projects, concerns about future moves bloating local government debt have emerged, reports the Guangzhou-based 21st Century Business Herald. In an attempt to rejuvenate the local economy, the Zhejiang provincial government announced a plan earlier this year to launch more than 1,000 major projects over a five year period, with the aim of attracting more than 10 trillion yuan (US$1.6 trillion) in fixed asset investment. Meanwhile, the country’s National Audit Office announced on July 28 the formation of a new administration to audit all local government debt, which is expected to begin operations in early August. Read more of this post

Ilkka Paananen says his goal is to make himself “the least powerful CEO”. Yet he runs fast-growing gaming company Supercell that is a leading light of the Nordic region’s flourishing technology start-up scene

August 27, 2013 5:55 pm

Cell structure for the digital era

By Richard Milne

Ilkka Paananen says his goal is to make himself “the least powerful CEO”. Yet he runs a fast-growing company that is a leading light of the Nordic region’s flourishing technology start-up scene. Supercell was set up in 2010 in Helsinki as a gaming company with a focus on Facebook. But after a disappointing first game, Mr Paananen bet the company on the iPad. In the middle of 2012, it put out two tablet games – Clash of Clans, a battle strategy game, and Hay Day, which has a farming theme – and by the first quarter of this year it was pulling in $179m in revenues and $106m in operating profits. About 10m people a day currently play the games.

Read more of this post

Jenkins: Only Bill Gates Can Change Microsoft

August 27, 2013, 7:03 p.m. ET

Jenkins: Only Bill Gates Can Change Microsoft

The company needs to give up its Windows-era strategic obsessions.

HOLMAN W. JENKINS, JR.

Retirement was not the fate many customers likely would have chosen for Microsoft‘sMSFT -2.61% Steve Ballmer. Something unpleasant involving wolverines would have been more like it—especially if you were among the countless corporate foot soldiers recently required to upgrade an underpowered company-issued laptop to Windows 7 because of Microsoft’s withdrawal of support for its long-lived XP. Read more of this post

Microsoft: 11 Fix-It Strategies; Business Leaders, Tech and Management Gurus Discuss a Post-Ballmer Company

August 27, 2013, 7:44 p.m. ET

Microsoft: 11 Fix-It Strategies

Business Leaders, Tech and Management Gurus Discuss a Post-Ballmer Company

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In the nearly 14 years that Steve Ballmer has overseen Microsoft Corp.,MSFT -2.61% the company’s annual revenue has more than tripled to nearly $78 billion, and its profit ranks among the largest in any industry. And yet most technologists would agree that Microsoft is in dire need of rebooting. The company is characterized as a lumbering giant that under Mr. Ballmer didn’t introduce enough meaningful products to keep pace with the changing tide in technology. Microsoft has pointed to its successes under Mr. Ballmer in several new areas, including the Xbox videogame system and the company’s push into selling a collection of back-end technologies for corporations. In light of the news that Mr. Ballmer is retiring, The Wall Street Journal asked business leaders, technologists and management gurus what Microsoft needs to do to regain its luster as a technology innovator. Read more of this post

Steve Ballmer’s Biggest Mistakes As CEO Of Microsoft

Steve Ballmer’s Biggest Mistakes As CEO Of Microsoft

JAY YAROW AUG. 27, 2013, 9:07 PM 20,265 6

Steve Ballmer is out as CEO of Microsoft, ending one of the most polarizing runs in technology. While he did much right at Microsoft — tripling revenue and profits, building the Servers & Tools group — Ballmer will also be remembered for presiding over the company’s loss of dominance and for what he did wrong.  And he did make some mistakes over the last thirteen years. Read more of this post

The Microsoft CEO candidate no one is discussing: IBM’s former chief Sam Palmisano

The Microsoft CEO candidate no one is discussing: Sam Palmisano

By Adam Lashinsky, Sr. Editor at Large August 27, 2013: 10:13 AM ET

The former IBM chief has a stellar record. What better credentials could a new Microsoft CEO have than having humiliated and beaten his new charges? FORTUNE — When I reviewed Steve Ballmer’s umpteenth structural reorganization of Microsoft last month — was it only last month? — I noted that the key missing ingredient to making the construct work was leadership. A re-jiggered Apple without Steve Jobs doing the jiggering never would have been successful. It took the man who understood the culture of the organization, was willing to make the painful cuts as well as to promote what was working, and who commanded the respect of the employees, to succeed at Apple. Read more of this post

Twitter Hires Commerce Chief to Add Shopping Via Tweets

Twitter Hires Commerce Chief to Add Shopping Via Tweets

Twitter Inc. hired Nathan Hubbard, the former president of Ticketmaster, as its first head of commerce, part of a push to enable shopping via short postings on its social website. Hubbard, 38, started at San Francisco-based Twitter this week, said Jim Prosser, a spokesman for the online social service. As commerce chief, Hubbard will report to Adam Bain, Twitter’s head of global revenue. Hubbard left Live Nation Entertainment Inc. (LYV)’s Ticketmaster unit earlier this month amid an overhaul of its online services. Read more of this post

Tivo’s Profit Recipe: Persistence, and Plenty of Lawyers

August 27, 2013, 7:30 PM

Tivo’s Profit Recipe: Persistence, and Plenty of Lawyers

By Tom Gara

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TiVo’s new Roamio, which allows you to stream TV and DVR to mobile devices

From the WSJ’s Ian Sherr:

TiVo Inc.TIVO -1.61% announced the highest net revenue and profit in the company’s history and strong subscriber growth, causing the company to predict profits ahead for the foreseeable future. The company, which has mostly posted losses since the second half of 2009, said results for its second fiscal quarter and ongoing royalty payments stemming from patent litigation eased doubts about its long-term profitability. “Everyone has been asking that question about TiVo for a decade,” said Tom Rogers, TiVo’s chief executive, in an interview. TiVo came early to the DVR business, but soon found its product being replicated in one way or another by many in the cable industry, as well as by new entrants from the Internet. Read more of this post

Apple Updates TV Box to Add Disney, Music, Weather Apps

Apple Updates TV Box to Add Disney, Music, Weather Apps

Apple Inc. (AAPL) added programming from Walt Disney Co., Weather Channel LLC and music-video service Vevo LLC for Apple TV, stepping up the pace of bringing on new video content to its $100 Internet-connected set-top box. The material was added today with a software update, said Christine Monaghan, a spokeswoman for Apple. Two applications from Disney, Disney Channel and Disney XD, will have live and on-demand content, and will be available to subscribers of pay-TV services that carry the channels. Vevo and the Weather Channel will be available without a cable or satellite subscription, she said. Read more of this post

Mewar Ortho: Taking Quality Health Care to Rural India; Udaipur’s Dr Manish Chhaparwal set out to fund his American dream. Instead, he set up India’s leading orthopaedic health care delivery system

Mewar Ortho: Taking Quality Health Care to Rural India

by Udit Misra | Aug 28, 2013

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Udaipur’s Dr Manish Chhaparwal set out to fund his American dream. Instead, he set up India’s leading orthopaedic health care delivery system

Mewar Orthopaedic Hospital was created almost by chance. Its founder, Dr Manish Chhaparwal, an orthopaedic surgeon, had his sights set on higher education in the US. But while trying to fund further studies in America, Chhaparwal unwittingly laid the foundation for an exemplary business in health care delivery.  Today, Mewar has 12 branches across Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat. Apart from the main hospital in Udaipur, almost all the other units are located in rural and semi-urban areas. “I believe there is a big market in the rural areas if you can provide quality service at affordable prices,” says Chhaparwal.  The chief driver of Mewar’s success has been its focus on quality basic care without excessive capital investment. Its business credentials received a huge boost when several VC and PE firms evinced interest in investing. A series of negotiations later, Matrix Partners, which specialises in health care sector financing, invested Rs 35 crore in December 2012. Since then, it has opened eight new centres, adding to the four already existing.  The potential for expansion is massive. According to Chhaparwal, there are around 300 locations in India which have little to no orthopaedic health care facilities.  Read more of this post

Europe Haggles Over New Rules Aimed at Saving Fish Stocks; A Ban on Discarding Unwanted Fish Overboard Raises Questions of Cost and Enforceability

August 27, 2013, 9:29 p.m. ET

Europe Haggles Over New Rules Aimed at Saving Fish Stocks

A Ban on Discarding Unwanted Fish Overboard Raises Questions of Cost and Enforceability

ASHLEY DALTON

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ZEEBRUGGE, Belgium—Less than five months before a landmark overhaul of Europe’s fishing industry starts to take effect, policy makers and industry groups are haggling over how to replenish depleted fish stocks without crippling the business. A ban on discarding unwanted fish overboard is the most contentious new rule agreed to in late May after years of negotiation. Fishermen currently discard nearly a quarter of Europe’s total catch on average, and as much as 70% of the hauls in some areas, European Commission data show. Scientists and environmental groups blame the practice for speeding the decline of fish stocks. Read more of this post

Amgen’s Onyx Takeover Is Symptom of Deeper Pharma Sickness

Amgen’s Onyx Takeover Is Symptom of Deeper Pharma Sickness

By Megan McArdle  Aug 26, 2013

Amgen, the world’s biggest biotechnology company, is spending $10.4 billion to buy Onyx Pharmaceuticals, it announced on Sunday. Derek Lowe sums up the industry insider take: Amgen isn’t buying Onyx for their research staff, or any of their people at all. As that Bloomberg story linked to above has it, “Amgen to Buy Onyx for $10.4 Billion to Gain Cancer Drug”. Read more of this post

Lorillard Isn’t Backing Away From Menthol or E-Cigarettes

August 27, 2013, 7:35 p.m. ET

Lorillard Isn’t Backing Away From Menthol or E-Cigarettes

MIKE ESTERL

Lorillard_CEO_Murray_Kessler_on_the_Blu_48315189_thumbnail

Murray Kessler, the CEO of Lorillard, America’s third-largest tobacco company, discusses what’s ahead in alternative tobacco products and managing regulatory risk.

Big Tobacco has always faced strong regulatory scrutiny, but no tobacco maker is more exposed right now than Lorillard Inc. LO -0.71% The Food and Drug Administration said last month that menthol-flavored cigarettes likely pose more public health risk than regular cigarettes, a potential precursor to tighter restrictions on minty smokes. The federal agency also plans to propose regulations for battery-powered electronic cigarettes that turn nicotine-laced liquid into a vapor. That makes things tricky for Lorillard, which brings in about 90% of sales from its Newport menthol cigarettes and which paid $135 million last year to acquire blu, a top-selling e-cigarette brand. Read more of this post

SocGen’s Shocking Oil Forecast: $150 Upside; $125 Base Case Following Syrian Attack “Within A Week”

Brent Crude May Spike to $150 on Syria Spillover, SocGen Says

By Ramsey Al-Rikabi  Aug 27, 2013

Brent crude may “spike briefly” to $150 a barrel if a U.S.-led attack on Syria sparks further conflict in the Middle East and leads to supply disruptions, Societe Generale SA (GLE) said in a report e-mailed today. Military action against the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is likely within the next week, Michael Wittner, the bank’s New York-based head of oil market research, said in the report. Brent, the price benchmark for more than half the world’s crude, may rise to as much as $125 a barrel “in the coming days” in anticipation or event of a strike, the bank said. A spike to $150 is possible if a widening conflict halts output in Iraq or other Mideast producers.

Read more of this post

Investors Prove More Selective in Latest Emerging-Market Selloff

Updated August 27, 2013, 8:43 p.m. ET

Investors Prove More Selective in Latest Emerging-Market Selloff

ERIC BELLMAN and THOMAS CATAN

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Even as currencies in India, Turkey, the Philippines and Malaysia plummet against the U.S. dollar, other developing countries have managed to avoid the selloff, showing that investors are differentiating among them. Mexico and South Korea, which were at the locus of past emerging-market meltdowns, have been relatively unscathed this time around, and a number of Eastern European economies also are holding up well. Investors have been punishing countries with large trade imbalances and foreign borrowings instead. Read more of this post

RICHARD KOO: Emerging Markets Are In For A ‘Tumultuous New Era’

RICHARD KOO: Emerging Markets Are In For A ‘Tumultuous New Era’

JOE WEISENTHAL AUG. 27, 2013, 8:25 PM 4,745 8

Great stuff here from Richard Koo of Nomura, who weighs in on the recent selling in emerging market currencies (and equities and debt). His take: This is the price emerging markets are paying for not being more vigilant about hot money rushing into their economies after the Fed announced QE after the U.S. crisis. The emerging market, he argues, could have prevented the big rush of foreign cash through prudent measures, but that they opted not to take any pain, and now they’re paying the price for going the easy route. He concludes that we’re now in for a “tumultuous new era” for emerging markets as QE gets unwound. Read more of this post

Thai Pension Fund Buying Stocks After Bear Market Plunge; The benchmark SET Index (SET) has fallen for 10 days, the longest losing streak since 1998

Thai Pension Fund Buying Stocks After Bear Market Plunge

Thailand’s Government Pension Fund is boosting holdings of local equities after a bear market in the benchmark index sent valuations to the lowest levels in more than a year. “This is a great buying opportunity,” Yingyong Nilasena, chief investment officer of the fund, which manages about $19 billion of assets, said by phone from Bangkok. “We have increased positions in some stocks recently. We plan to buy some more.” Yingyong declined to name specific companies. Read more of this post

Rule Change Brings IPOs in Thailand

Aug 27, 2013

Rule Change Brings IPOs in Thailand

By P.R. Venkat And Nopparat Chaichalearmmongkol

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Investors may be fleeing from emerging markets, but Thailand’s tycoons are gearing up for more than $4 billion in initial public offerings before the year is out, capitalizing on ample domestic liquidity and racing against time in the face of imminent regulatory changes. Some of the country’s richest families, whose businesses range from banks to telecommunications to properties, plan to list a series of property funds before new rules, fees and taxes on real-estate investment trusts kick in as early as next year. Others are counting on strong demand for trust listings to raise cash. Read more of this post

Property Stocks Decline on Latest Housing Curbs to cut the maximum tenure for new loans to purchase homes built by the state to 25 years from 30 years; Mortgage payments capped at 30% of their gross monthly income, down from 35%

Property Stocks Decline on Latest Housing Curbs: Singapore Mover

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Singapore’s property stocks fell, driving an index tracking developers to a one-year low, after the government tightened its public housing policy by reducing tenures for new loans and restricting purchases by foreigners. The Singapore property index tracking 43 stocks fell 1.2 percent to 694.15 as of 9:13 a.m. local time, set for the lowest since Sept. 11. Singapore will cut the maximum tenure for new loans to purchase homes built by the state to 25 years from 30 years, the Housing & Development Board said in a statement on its website. Mortgage payments are capped at 30 percent of their gross monthly income, down from 35 percent. Read more of this post

Maidless in Malaysia because fees are rising and Indonesian recruitment firms are shunning Malaysia to find jobs for their better trained workers in more lucrative markets like Singapore and Hong Kong

Maidless in Malaysia

Wednesday, August 28, 2013 – 04:00

Lester Kong

The Straits Times

MALAYSIA – Ms Belinda Kuan gave up a promising career after a long and “frustrating” hunt for a maid ended in failure. “We got an Indonesian maid in February after applying non-stop for nearly two years,” said the 29-year-old mother of two pre-school children. “Then she quit after two months for no reason.” It is a dilemma facing more and more middle-income Malaysian families whose parents both work. They are finding it harder to hire foreign maids because fees are rising and Indonesian recruitment firms are shunning Malaysia to find jobs for their better trained workers in more lucrative markets like Singapore and Hong Kong. Others like Ms Joy Yap, the manager of an IT firm, is upset with having to pay “search” fees of up to RM2,000 (S$775) to agencies to find a maid. “In short, lots of Malaysians are being cheated due to desperation,” she said. Read more of this post

The Fed and the Emerging Markets Peril

The Fed and the Emerging Markets Peril

U.S. officials have taken to the airwaves over the last few days to absolve the Federal Reserve of blame for the recent turmoil in emerging markets, a response to some of the debate that arose from the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City’s annual meeting last week in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. The most common argument — that the Fed’s dual mandate of price stability and maximum employment is limited by law to domestic objectives — is correct. But that line of reasoning is too narrow given the feedback loops between emerging markets, corporate earnings and the U.S. economy. Read more of this post

Roach: The Global QE Exit Crisis

The Global QE Exit Crisis

Stephen S. Roach

26 August 2013

NEW HAVEN – The global economy could be in the early stages of another crisis. Once again, the US Federal Reserve is in the eye of the storm. As the Fed attempts to exit from so-called quantitative easing (QE) – its unprecedented policy of massive purchases of long-term assets – many high-flying emerging economies suddenly find themselves in a vise. Currency and stock markets in India and Indonesia are plunging, with collateral damage evident in Brazil, South Africa, and Turkey. Read more of this post

Nothing screams shadow banking quite like a leveraged loan ETF

Nothing screams shadow banking quite like a leveraged loan ETF

Tracy Alloway

| Aug 27 09:15 | 2 comments | Share

loanetfs

They are billed as a quick and easy way for investors to gain access to higher-yielding assets while still providing some protection if interest rates start to rise. They are ETFs which track portfolios of (floating-rate) bank loans. And they are on fire. USA Today reported in May that the PowerShares Senior Loan Portfolio (BKLN), for instance, has become one of the best-selling ETFs this year, ballooning to $4.2bn in size “after raking in about $2.7bn of fresh assets so far this year.” Read more of this post

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