2004

Corporate Finance : ADRs Returning to Role As Takeover Currency

THE AMERICAS The use of American depositary receipts to pay for foreign takeovers of US companies likely will increase this year, market participants say. Many foreign issuers have reconciled their accounting to US Generally Accepted Accounting Principles, or GAAP, and ...

Milestones : United States

RECORD TRADE DEFICIT: A SIGN OF STRENGTH OR WEAKNESS? After two years of a slumping dollar, one could be tempted to look for signs of improvement in the gaping US trade deficit. Look again. While exports have increased, imports are ...

Corporate Finance : Group of 7’s Warning Fails To Support Dollar

THE AMERICAS In a move that came as a surprise to some analysts, the Group of 7 industrial nations warned against excessive volatility and disorderly foreign exchange movements in its communiqué following the group’s early-February meeting in Boca Raton, Florida. ...

Milestones : Emerging Markets

WHERE WILL THE NEXT EMERGING MARKETS CRISIS ERUPT? The mere hint that US interest rates would eventually have to increase from their lowest levels in 40 years was enough to send shock waves through some emerging markets, particularly in Latin ...

Features : Corporate Aviation Market Pulls Out of Nosedive

Fractional ownership and ‘Jet Cards’ are helping boost demand for business jets. The market for executive jets hit a patch of turbulence when the economy tanked in 2001, but with the stock market soaring and mergers back in vogue, it ...

Corporate Finance : Dollar Declines Sharply, But Has Further to Fall

THE AMERICAS Despite expectations of strong US economic growth throughout 2004, analysts are nearly uniformly bearish on the dollar, which dropped to record lows against the euro in January. “The economy will be strong enough to keep the trade deficit ...

Newsmakers : Bush's New Baby Causes Surprise All Round

UNITED STATES “In his budget for FY 2005 the President promises to close loopholes, halt several abusive tax avoidance transactions, and simplify the tax code.” US President George W. Bush has made a name for himself with his efforts to ...

Features : World’s Best Trade Finance Banks

Therebounding global economy is creating opportunities for cross-border sales, but only the foolhardy operate without the safety net provided by a good trade banker. Citigroup, through its Banamex subsidiary, was selected to arrange the financing for Aeromexico’s purchase of spare ...

Milestones : Snow Talks Up The Dollar To Avoid A Crash

CHINA, JAPAN The Group of 7 finance ministers and central bankers will face some thorny currency issues once again when they meet in sunny Boca Raton, Florida, on February 6 and 7. The G-7’s communiqué of last September may turn ...

Features : ADRs Gain Favor

ADRs Look Set To Become the Capital-Raising Tool of Choice With interest rates poised to rise later this year, ADRs are expected to supplant convertible bonds as the preferred instrument for emerging-market issuers. Sanjeev Nanavati, managing director of depositary receipt ...

Corporate Finance : Credit Spreads Forecast To Remain Tight in 2004

THE AMERICAS A favorable confluence of economic factors is expected to keep credit spreads tight in 2004, analysts say. Corporate bonds outperformed US Treasury bonds by more than 500 basis points last year, thanks to an improvement in credit quality ...

Corporate Finance : US Accounting Rules Trip Up Foreign Issuers

THE AMERICAS In the past two years, foreign issuers of securities have agreed to pay a total of about $700 million to settle shareholder class actions in the United States, usually related to accounting issues, according to a study by ...

Corporate Finance : Business Investment Boosts Debt Issuance

THE AMERICAS US corporate bond issuance is getting a lift from increasing business investment, as well as improving credit quality, according to the New Yorkbased Bond Market Association. Corporate bond issuance rose 12.9% in the first three-quarters of 2003 versus ...

2003

Features : Global Briefing

Deal Flow Picks Up in a Market Well on the Road to Recovery Global Finance Award Winners Forecast a Continued Upturn in 2004 The global project finance market has sprung to life this year, following two years that many institutional ...

Corporate Finance : Taiwan Flat-Screen Maker Raises $573 Million in GDRs

ASIA Taiwan-based Chi Mei Optoelectronics, which produces thin-film transistor, or TFT, liquid crystal displays for flat-screen computers, cell phones and televisions, raised $573 million through offerings of global depositary receipts. The company plans to build three plants in an industrial ...

Corporate Finance : Companies Lock in Rates As US Economy Surges

THE AMERICAS US corporations are prepaying outstanding bonds and locking in current low interest rates amid signs of strength in the economy, analysts say. The 7.2% rise in US gross domestic product in the third quarter and employment gains in ...

Corporate Finance : Will Stronger US Economy Act as Parachute for Dollar?

THE AMERICAS The US dollar’s headlong plunge has suddenly slowed dramatically in response to better-thanexpected reports on the economy, including stabilization of the employment market and a 7.2% rise in third-quarter gross domestic product. The surge in US economic activity, ...

Milestones : Pfandbrief To Be Strengthened By Pending Legal Changes

GERMANY Moody’s Investors Service has updated its rating methodology of the Pfandbrief in anticipation of amendments to the German Mortgage Bank Act, which are expected to go into effect in January 2004. The Pfandbrief market, composed of debt secured against ...

Newsmakers : Is Greenspan Heading For His Second Bush Showdown?

UNITED STATES “Greenspan promised to be patient. But his patience run out at a bad time for President Bush.” Alan Greenspan is painting himself into a corner that could lead to a confrontation with the Bush administration as next year’s ...

Milestones : Caspian Oil And Pipeline Projects Get The Green Light

AZERBAIJAN The International Finance Corporation’s board has approved investments in two related Caspian oilfield and pipeline projects costing approximately $6.8 billion. The projects include the first-phase development of an oilfield off Azerbaijan in the Caspian Sea and the construction of ...

Cover Story : The Best Companies In Asia

ANNUAL SURVEY AIRLINES Singapore Airlines CEO: Chew Choon Seng It is a measure of Singapore Airlines’ strength that it took the SARS epidemic to cause it to post its firstever quarterly loss in the quarter that ended in June. The ...

Milestones : Will Statistical Fog Ground Bank Of England?

UNITED KINGDOM “It is worth asking whether the statistical fog enveloping the UK economy foreshadows stormy economic weather.” Mervyn King, Bank of England In a 1963 movie, “The VIPs,” starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, an elite group of British ...

Milestones : Islamic Bond Market Coming Of Age

QATAR The Middle Eastern nation of Qatar sold the biggest-ever Islamic bond in October, a $700 million, seven-year global offering that also set a record for the longest maturity for such an issue. The deal was increased in size from ...

Newsmakers : Markets Can’t Seem To Catch Snow’s Drift

UNITED STATES US treasury secretary John Snow stumbled into a storm in late October after suggesting to a British newspaper that US interest rates were headed higher. The treasury chief said Washington would welcome higher rates because they would underline ...

Milestones : Congress Takes Aim At Corporate Tax Cheats

UNITED STATES Frustrated by an Internal Revenue Service that cannot seem to catch corporate tax evaders and that fails to punish them when it does track them down, the US Senate Finance Committee held hearings in late October that highlighted ...

Newsmakers : New York Fed’s New Chief May Be The Man To Save The Dollar

UNITED STATES “Foreign exchange market participants are relieved to have somebody who understands their market in the second most powerful position at the Fed.” Timothy F. Geithner, the 42-year-old head of policy development at the International Monetary Fund, has had ...

Corporate Finance : Deutsche Bank Study Shows ADRs Boost Stock Prices

GLOBAL DEPOSITARY RECEIPTS EUROPE Deutsche Bank Study Shows ADRs Boost Stock Prices German blue-chip companies with American depositary receipt programs enjoy higher stock prices than similar companies without ADR programs, according to a study by Deutsche Bank’s Global Equity Services. ...

Corporate Finance : Canada’s Manulife Acquires John Hancock Financial

MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS THE AMERICAS Canada’s Manulife Acquires John Hancock Financial The theory that bigger is better in financial services is spurring a wave of mergers in the industry.The latest example is Torontobased Manulife Financial’s all-stock takeover of Boston’s John ...

Milestones : Taking Note

CHINA/UNITED STATES RISING YUAN COULD GREASE DOLLAR’S SKIDS … The United States began throwing its weight around in China lastmonth, with treasury secretary John W. Snow making it clear to Chinese leaders that they need to change their policy of ...

Corporate Finance : Telecom Leads Parade Of Taiwan-Based Issuers

ASIA Taiwan’s Chunghwa Telecom raised $1.4 billion through a new issue of American depositary receipts in July, as the Taiwan government reduced its stake in the company. The issue sold out quickly, as investors were attracted by the relatively high ...

Cover Story : World’s Best Banks 2003

AFTER WEATHERING TWO terrible years, the world’s banks must have been looking forward to a less tempestuous time in 2003. And that was what they got. Sure, there have been trouble spots in the past year, too, but most of ...

Features : Best Banks In Project Finance 2003

High energy prices could prove to be a tonic for a market that has been under the weather for the past few years. Global Finance selects the winners from a shrinking group of banks with the appetite to take on ...

Features : Euro Stumbles as Germany, Italy Slide Into Recession

EUROPE The euro’s slump against the US dollar and the Japanese yen may have further to run, as long as the global recovery remains on track, analysts say. Germany and Italy are technically in recession, after reporting two quarters in ...

Corporate Finance : Foreign Exchange

THE AMERICAS Psychology Shifts In Favor of Dollar There has been an impor-tant, if not yet seismic, shift in foreign exchange market psychology in favor of the US dollar, ana-lysts say. “The market appears more confident in a US recovery,” ...

Corporate Finance : Corporate Bonds

THE AMERICAS Rush to Refinance Debt Appears To Be Ending The decline in interest rates to 45-year lows in the first half of 2003 trig-gered a rush of corporate bond issuance that may detract from the volume of new issues ...

Features : Selecting a 401(k) Plan Provider

Selecting a 401(k) Plan Provider: Navigating the Maze There are thousands of 401(k) plan providers to choose from. The consequences of making the wrong choice can be painful. For US companies, a 401(k) plan is an important tool to attract ...

Corporate Finance : Mergers & Acquisitions

THE AMERICAS $6 Billion Merger Creates Third-Largest Biotech Firm IDEC Pharmaceuticals and Biogen agreed to merge in a $6 billion deal that will create the third-largest biotech company in the world. Biogen’s main drug is Avonex, which is used to ...