FX Supplement 2014 | Renminbi Expansion
Despite media hype, the renminbi still has some way to go before challenging the dollar as a major currency for international trade.
FX Supplement 2014 | Renminbi Expansion
FX Supplement 2014 | Introduction
Many dyed-in-the-wool foreign exchange traders lament the regulatory changes sweeping the industry more than six years after the global financial crisis.
Management | Compliance Risk
Corporations are stepping up their efforts to mitigate execution risk in cross-border mergers and acquisitions, as growing numbers of regulators worldwide are becoming more stringent about enforcing antitrust and anticorruption laws.
Corporate bond markets denominated in domestic currencies are developing rapidly in many emerging markets, enabling local companies to issue debt without having to worry about repaying it in revalued dollars.
Capital Markets | Q&A
Tim Gee is a partner in the London office and global head of mergers and acquisitions at Baker & McKenzie.
Global Finance’s annual list of Who’s Who in Foreign Exchange.
Trends | Foreign Exchange
The global imbalance created by Europe’s huge current-account surplus and excess savings has created a glut of euros that could condemn the single currency to broad-based weakening.
Trends | CryptoCurrencies
There are potential benefits that bitcoin or bitcoin-like technology—as opposed to the cryptocurrency itself—could bring to the derivatives marketplace.
Capital Markets | Middle East Equity
The Middle East is experiencing a boom in initial public offerings, following years of relative inactivity since the global financial crisis. The area’s IPO markets began to recover in the fourth quarter of last year, and new share issues are now coming at a fever pitch, despite falling oil prices that could threaten regional economies.
MANAGEMENT | TAX PLANNING
When Congress returns following the November elections, the issue of what to do about US companies making foreign acquisitions to relocate overseas and save on taxes will be high on the agenda.
TRENDS | RENMINBI TRADING
Even though Toronto is the center of Canada’s financial industry, much of the country’s trade with China passes through Vancouver. Groups in both cities have decided to work together to promote Canada as a trading hub for the renminbi.
CAPITAL MARKETS | Q&A
Julie Dickson is equity portfolio manager at emerging-markets investment manager Ashmore.
Global Finance presents its annual report on the performance of the world’s central bank governors.
Global Finance unveils its annual list of the best banks globally, regionally and by country. The banking industry remains under stress, but there are bright spots.
CAPITAL MARKETS | FOREIGN EXCHANGE
As the Federal Reserve winds down its bond-buying program and prepares to raise rates, analysts are debating the likelihood of a repeat of last year’s “taper tantrum”—when the mere hint of a gradual end to quantitative easing in the US caused huge disruptions to emerging markets (EMs).
CAPITAL MARKETS | AFRICAN EQUITY
Initial public offerings on the Nairobi Securities Exchange have been few and far between in recent years.
CAPITAL MARKETS | ISLAMIC FINANCE
To diversify its sources of financing, Goldman Sachs plans to issue a benchmark Islamic bond, at a time when demand for sukuk is outrunning supply. Meanwhile, South Africa is planning its first sovereign sukuk, and the Egyptian government is working on a new sukuk law, following the military’s overthrow of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi last year.
TRENDS | SRI LANKA
Hiran Embuldeniya, managing director at York Street Partners, an investment bank in Colombo, Sri Lanka, says there are plenty of opportunities for the firm to do business in the country as it rapidly develops in the wake of a 30-year civil war that ended in 2009.
COUNTRY REPORT | EGYPT
Pressure is building on Egypt’s president, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, to deliver economic gains. Falling investment and a sharp drop in tourist arrivals have weakened growth over the past three years. But a rapid return to pre-2011 expansion levels appears unlikely.
CAPITAL MARKETS | FOREIGN EXCHANGE
It is a changing world for FX traders. Regulatory uncertainty and low volatility are putting a damper on the foreign exchange market, with spreads narrowing by 20% already this year—to record lows.
MANAGEMENT | TAX PLANNING
Gregory Wasson, president and CEO of Walgreen, says the company “concluded it was not in the best interest of shareholders to attempt to re-domicile outside the US” to cut its tax bill.
CAPITAL MARKETS | MIDDLE EAST EQUITY
Riyadh, the Saudi capital, has already built a new financial district, named after King Abdullah, but its 42 new skyscrapers stand largely empty. That could change following the decision by the government in July to allow foreign financial institutions to invest directly in listed shares, starting in the first half of 2015.
CAPITAL MARKETS FOCUS: MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS
Companies around the world are stepping up their due diligence on mergers and acquisitions involving Chinese counterparties, after several major deals have been called into question as a result of Peking’s widening corruption probe.
CAPITAL MARKETS FOCUS | MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS
Mergers and acquisitions in 2014 are being announced at the fastest pace since the financial crisis of 2008–2009, but broken deals are also setting records for the same period.
MANAGEMENT | PENSIONS
As people live longer, many companies are discovering that they have to pay pension benefits to retirees for longer than they had expected. Insurance companies are stepping in with new products that can help take this “longevity risk” out of corporate defined-benefit pension plans.
Subcustodians are being pressured by declining margins and low interest rates at the same time they are trying to cope with an onslaught of new regulatory requirements. For those with the skill and the wherewithal to meet the challenges, however, the business of protecting and servicing client assets remains profitable. Global investing is expected to continue to increase in the future.
FINANCE & CAPITAL | CAPITAL MARKETS
The European Central Bank’s adoption of a negative deposit rate for banks’ excess reserves [meaning they charge interest for bank reserves held at the ECB] could have a widespread impact on money markets and corporate cash-management policies.
GCC REGIONAL SUPERSECTION 2014 | INTRODUCTION
The six countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council have some of the world’s highest living standards and a combined GDP of more than $1.6 trillion. They play an important role in maintaining global economic stability, and their continuing prosperity depends critically on oil prices and the ability to generate surpluses to pay for infrastructure development and job creation.
In June, after only a year in office, Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, the 34-year-old emir of Qatar, found himself at the center of two global news stories.
FINANCE & CAPITAL | MANAGEMENT: Accounting
FINANCE & CAPITAL | CAPITAL MARKETS: DEPOSITARY RECEIPTS
FINANCE & CAPITAL | TRENDS: Islamic Finance
FINANCE & CAPITAL | TRENDS: SOVEREIGN DEBT: SNAPSHOT: M&A
GCC REGIONAL SUPERSECTION 2014 | BANKING SECTOR
Banks in the GCC are leveraging the latest technologies to keep pace with a customer base whose members are increasingly demanding, wealthy and tech-savvy.
Marc Chandler is the global head of currency strategy at investment bank Brown Brothers Harriman.
GCC REGIONAL SUPERSECTION 2014 | UNITY
Despite more than 30 years of political and economic unity, the Gulf Cooperation Council countries remain divided when it comes to foreign policy and approaches to national and regional security.
FINANCE & CAPITAL | TRENDS: SOVEREIGN DEBT
FINANCE & CAPITAL | CAPITAL MARKETS: AMERICAN DEPOSITARY RECEIPTS
COUNTRY REPORT: UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
Despite a fast-growing economy and plans to boost growth via infrastructure investments, debts are mounting again at Dubai’s government-related entities. Is the day when Dubai World almost collapsed coming back to haunt investors?
CORPORATE FINANCING NEWS | FOREIGN EXCHANGE
CORPORATE FINANCE FOCUS | CORPORATE DEBT
CORPORATE FINANCING NEWS | MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS
CORPORATE FINANCING NEWS | GLOBAL EQUITY/DRS
Led by the Asia-Pacific region, global proceeds from initial public offerings totaled more than $34 billion in the first quarter of 2014, an increase of 77% from the same period a year earlier, according to Renaissance Capital
Mergers and acquisitions involving Russian companies, including Morgan Stanley’s planned sale of its global oil-trading unit to Rosneft, are threatened by Western sanctions on Moscow over the Ukraine crisis.
NCB Capital, a major Saudi Arabian investment bank, named Sarah Al-Suhaimi, an accomplished asset manager, as its new CEO. She is the first woman to head an investment bank in the kingdom. The Saudi government owns part of National Commercial Bank, which controls NCB Capital.
Corporate credit-rating upgrades in the first quarter of 2014 outnumbered downgrades in Europe, the Middle East and Africa for the first time since 2008, according to Moody’s Investors Service. The rating agency says positive credit trends in the EMEA region are likely to continue through 2014, despite potential negative events in Russia and Ukraine.
In our 21st annual survey, Global Finance identifies the best banks in 150 countries and eight regions. The winners are not always the biggest banks, but rather, the best—those with the qualities that corporations should look for when choosing a bank.
Inflation in the eurozone slipped to 0.5% at an annual rate in March, its lowest level since 2009. The persistence of low inflation prompted policymakers to discuss quantitative easing (QE) and a negative deposit rate, putting some downward pressure on the euro.
CORPORATE FINANCING NEWS By Gordon Platt Verizon Communications, which sold $49 billion of debt last September in the largest bond sale ever, has returned to the bond market repeatedly this year to take advantage of low interest rates ...