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Monday, 15 October 2018

Upfront

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  • Seismic shifts

    An earthquake in the small hours of Thursday morning gave delegates at the IMF’s annual meetings in Bali an uncomfortable reminder that Asia’s emerging economies remain vulnerable to unforeseen shocks. The financial markets have been delivering their share of shocks as well, and another terrible week for risk assets provided a tricky backdrop for the gathering. Rising oil prices, slumping emerging market currencies and the worsening US-China trade war were all high on the agenda.

  • Haters gonna hate

    Funding Circle’s 17% collapse on its third day as a listed company was a shock for all concerned following a muted first couple of sessions. The next day, Aston Martin Lagonda hit the skids on its debut – just hours after securing a £4.33bn valuation.

  • Take me, I’m yours

    Investors like big, liquid bond deals. Especially when they know there aren’t many more in the pipeline any time soon.

  • Show us the money

    Hats off to all those involved in the remarkably successful leveraged financing backing Blackstone’s carve-out of a 55% stake in Thomson Reuters’ Financial & Risk unit (of which, full disclosure, IFR is a part).

  • Overnight sensation

    Just a few years ago, the idea of a US$4.3bn-equivalent overnight equity offering would have been unthinkable in Japan’s capital markets. Last week’s mega block trade in Yahoo Japan is therefore a big step forward.

  • Too big to fail

    The transatlantic leveraged finance market is facing a unique challenge as two massive buyout loans compete for investors’ time and money.

  • Test-driving a new model

    The Financial Conduct Authority couldn’t have hoped for a better road test for its changes to the UK IPO process than Aston Martin Lagonda. There won’t be a more high-profile float in the UK this year than the £1.25bn deal and as such it is certain to attract research from unconnected analysts.

  • Blocked pipeline

    Saudi Arabia certainly grabbed the headlines when it announced plans, in early 2016, to IPO its state oil company and cash cow Aramco. The deal, at a projected US$100bn, would be four times bigger than anything seen before. A valuation of US$2trn would be double that of Apple.

  • Contagion contained

    As the markets opened in London on Monday it seemed as though all hell was about to break loose across the emerging markets.

  • ​Reality check

    Turkey’s economy is broken. Everyone knows this apart from one person. Unfortunately, that person happens to be President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

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