• HSBC Refugees May Find a Stable Home in China
    Bloomberg

    HSBC Refugees May Find a Stable Home in China

    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- China’s banks may be about to assume the mantle of the ultimate widows-and-orphans home for Hong Kong’s small investors.For decades, HSBC Holdings Plc has held that status — a reliable provider of investor income that even carried on paying dividends through the global financial crisis in 2008-2009. Hong Kong’s biggest bank hadn’t missed a payout in Bloomberg-compiled data going back to 1986. That changed Wednesday when London-headquartered HSBC scrapped its interim dividend in response to a request from the Bank of England. The lender’s stock plunged 9.5% in Hong Kong, the most in more than a decade.It’s difficult to overstate the importance of HSBC to individual investors in the city where it was founded more than 150 years ago. The stock is unusually widely held. Institutions own just 61.5% of the shares, compared with 94% for Standard Chartered Plc, HSBC’s London-based and Hong Kong-listed rival. Standard Chartered also cancelled its dividend along with other British banks after the BOE called on them to conserve cash amid the coronavirus pandemic.HSBC’s dependable payouts have also been a lure for institutional investors. Shenzhen-based Ping An Insurance Group Co., the bank’s second-largest shareholder, cited the dividend as an attraction for taking its 7% stake. Mainland Chinese investors will also be feeling the pain: As much as 8.2% of HSBC’s Hong Kong-listed stock sits with investors who bought via trading pipes that connect the city’s exchange with counterparts in Shanghai and Shenzhen. That’s risen from about 2% three years ago.HSBC said it would cancel an interim dividend slated to be paid this month and make no payouts or buybacks until at least the end of the year. That raises the question of where investors will turn in search of the stable income that they used to take for granted from HSBC. The answer may lie in the bank’s giant, state-controlled rivals across the border in mainland China.That might seem surprising. Shares of Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Ltd., and three fellow Chinese lenders that are members of Hong Kong’s benchmark Hang Seng Index, have languished over the past decade. Their poor performance reflects investor concerns that China’s post-financial-crisis buildup of debt will eventually lead to a surge in bad loans. ICBC’s Hong Kong-traded shares are 13% lower than they were a decade ago, and Bank of China Ltd. has slumped 27%. While China Construction Bank Corp. has lost only 1%, Bank of Communications Co. has fallen 44%.Yet all have been steady dividend payers. Including dividends, ICBC has returned 46% in the past decade, Construction Bank 65% and Bank of China 28%. Only Bocom has lost money for its investors. The four banks have typically traded at high dividend yields over that period. Yields for ICBC, Construction Bank and Bank of China have all averaged more than 5%, with peaks higher than 8%. Elevated yields often indicate that investors expect payouts to be cut or omitted altogether, but dividends have actually been rising at the Chinese banks in recent years.China’s opaque financial system and the state-owned banks’ status as policy tools of the government have helped to deter some investors. Yet with the coronavirus shutting down economies from the U.S. to Europe and pressuring financial systems, it’s debatable whether Chinese institutions should be seen as any more risky than their overseas counterparts. For one thing, having been first into the coronavirus outbreak, China’s economy is also the first to start getting back to normal. For another, the government has an incentive to ensure that the banks keep paying dividends because it relies on that income to fund social security spending. An unofficial rule has mandated the big state banks to pay at least 30% of their profits out as dividends, another reason to be sanguine that payouts will be sustained.In 2016, HSBC chose to keep its headquarters in London rather than move back to Hong Kong, a call that it may now be tempted to revisit. It would be ironic if a decision by its adopted jurisdiction helped send shareholders in the bank’s home city — and biggest market — scurrying into the hands of Chinese rivals.    This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg LP and its owners.Nisha Gopalan is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering deals and banking. She previously worked for the Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones as an editor and a reporter.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinionSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • USD/CAD Daily Forecast – Stuck Between U.S. Initial Jobless Claims And Trump Tweet
    FX Empire

    USD/CAD Daily Forecast – Stuck Between U.S. Initial Jobless Claims And Trump Tweet

    Canadian dollar loses ground following weak U.S. Initial Jobless Claims data but rebounds after the surge in oil prices.

  • Are Retailers Crunching the Right Sums to Fight Coronavirus?
    Zacks

    Are Retailers Crunching the Right Sums to Fight Coronavirus?

    Companies are drawing on revolving credit facilities to enhance cash positions amid coronavirus induced store closures.

  • WRAPUP 2-U.S. weekly jobless claims hit record once again
    Reuters

    WRAPUP 2-U.S. weekly jobless claims hit record once again

    The number of Americans filing claims for unemployment benefits last week shot to a record high for a second week in a row - topping 6 million - as more jurisdictions enforced stay-at-home measures to curb the coronavirus pandemic, which economists say has pushed the economy into recession. Initial claims for unemployment benefits rose to 6.65 million in the latest week from an unrevised 3.3 million the previous week, the U.S. Labor Department said on Thursday. The figures far exceeded the median estimate of 3.50 million in a Reuters survey of economists.

  • Need To Know: The Consensus Just Cut Its Arconic Inc. (NYSE:ARNC) Estimates For 2020
    Simply Wall St.

    Need To Know: The Consensus Just Cut Its Arconic Inc. (NYSE:ARNC) Estimates For 2020

    Market forces rained on the parade of Arconic Inc. (NYSE:ARNC) shareholders today, when the analysts downgraded their...

  • 5 Top Value Stocks to Buy in a Volatile April
    Zacks

    5 Top Value Stocks to Buy in a Volatile April

    Volatility is likely to persist in April as the panoptic impact of the coronavirus outbreak is yet to be realized in the United States and globally.

  • Bloomberg

    Scrambling for Cash? Cut Out the Middle Man

    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- The scramble to replace vanishing revenue is forcing businesses to take extreme measures. In the U.K, a firm recently broke the revered convention that a company shouldn’t dilute its shareholders by hurriedly selling a massive stake in itself in the open market. It saved on bankers, lawyers, time and paperwork. One week on, this maverick approach has gained official acceptance.Normally a big corporate share sale is about cutting debt or paying for a big takeover. There’s plenty of time to do this properly via a so-called rights offer: the lengthy process whereby investors get priority allocation on any new stock being sold (hence the “rights”). Today’s need for equity is different. Many companies suddenly have zero cash coming in due to measures aimed at combating the coronavirus. Their lenders may not help unless shareholders dig deep too. There’s no time to lose.The solution that’s emerged is to flout British custom and follow U.S. practice instead: Just sell a big slab of shares, ideally to existing shareholders, but ultimately to whomever will take them. After all, anti-dilution protection is not enshrined in U.K. law but in guidance stating that share sales of more than 10% of the company should essentially be via rights offers. That guidance was sensibly revised on Wednesday, with the threshold lifted to 20% over the next six months. Bosses will need to explain why they’re forgoing a rights offer and still try hard to raise the equity from existing owners.Airport caterer SSP Group Plc blazed the trail last week and sold a 20% stake in the market for 216 million pounds ($268 million). HSBC Holdings Plc, Lloyds Banking Group Plc and Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc simultaneously agreed to lend it 113 million pounds. Each slab of cash appeared to rely on the other being committed.Sticking with the old guidance was not a realistic option. Investment banks could have agreed to underwrite a “standby” rights offer at a price so low it would have wiped out existing shareholders, for a tidy fee. With that backstop secured, an orderly fundraising might have been possible, for another fee. But SSP’s share price would have subsequently tumbled, and the proceeds would have taken weeks to land. Lenders could have then charged the earth for bridging the financing gap.Why ever bother with a rights offer if you can just do what SSP did? Should nimble share placings become the norm? One argument against this is that small shareholders still get diluted. However in this case, they actually did OK: SSP shares rallied. The institutional shareholders who bought the deal paid a premium to SSP’s prior-day share price; there was no VIP bargain. Moreover, speedy share placings could also be made subject to clawback by smaller holders, with some tweaks to the current documentation requirements.The real problem is many firms will need to raise even more than 20% of their share capital this year. Share offerings that big require a chunky prospectus anyway under European regulations. And at that size, the case for ignoring anti-dilution rights is weaker.Shareholders know multiple demands for cash are looming. Companies should form an orderly queue, ask for no more and no less than they need, and choose their methods accordingly.This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg LP and its owners.Chris Hughes is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering deals. He previously worked for Reuters Breakingviews, as well as the Financial Times and the Independent newspaper.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinionSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Cruise operator Carnival pays high price to get credit investors on board
    Reuters

    Cruise operator Carnival pays high price to get credit investors on board

    Despite having its cruise ships idled to comply with coronavirus travel restrictions, the company was able to attract enough investors that its capital raising was oversubscribed several times over, albeit at a steep price, sources told Reuters. Carnival priced $4 billion in bonds maturing in 2023 - upsized from the $3 billion originally planned - with a yield at par value of 11.5%, it said in a statement. By comparison, Carnival paid a 1% yield in October, when it borrowed 600 million euros (531 million pounds) in the European debt market.

  • Bloomberg

    Coast Guard to Cruise Ships: Prepare to Care for Sick at Sea

    (Bloomberg) -- Cruise ships should be ready to care for passengers and crew with Covid-19 and other flulike symptoms at sea, the U.S. Coast Guard has advised, saying medical evacuations are contributing to strained health-care resources in the Southeast.Foreign-flagged vessels with more than 50 people on board should plan to treat passengers for an “indefinite period of time,” according to a March 29 memo from the Coast Guard Seventh District Area of Responsibility, which includes Georgia, South Carolina, Puerto Rico and Florida, home to the world’s busiest cruise port in Miami.The Coast Guard isn’t saying it will refuse evacuations or not let ships dock. The advisory applies to cruise ships flying foreign flags -- virtually the entire industry. Three Carnival Corp. vessels, including two with sick passengers, are steaming toward Fort Lauderdale and are due to arrive in days.“This is necessary as shore-side medical facilities may reach full capacity and lose the ability to accept and effectively treat critically ill patients,” said the memo, which was signed by Rear Admiral E.C. Jones, commander of the Seventh District.Two Holland America ships owned by Carnival were set to arrive Thursday in Fort Lauderdale, one bearing sick passengers. Executives pleaded with local authorities Tuesday to allow them to dock on humanitarian grounds, saying two people need emergency medical evacuation. Another Carnival-owned ship with sick passengers on board, the Coral Princess, was scheduled to arrive in Fort Lauderdale on Saturday.‘Big Trouble’At a press briefing Wednesday at the White House, President Donald Trump said the passengers included Canadian and British nationals, as well as Americans, and that officials were mobilizing to help, including sending medical teams on board.“We’re taking the Canadians off and giving them to Canadian authorities,” the president said. “The same thing with the U.K. But we have to help the people -- they’re in big trouble.”Vessels requesting so-called medevac for flu-like symptoms should speak with the Joint Rescue Coordination Centers for Miami or San Juan, according to the memo. It said they must explain the circumstances, and there must be confirmed hospital space for evacuation to be considered.Foreign-flagged vessels, including those registered to the Bahamas, should first seek help in the jurisdiction where they’re flagged, according to the Coast Guard.All vessels in U.S. territorial seas have to immediately report sick passengers and crew and deaths, as well as provide daily updates on the ill. If they don’t immediately report illness or death, they could be prosecuted, the memo said.According to a Carnival statement Wednesday, the Holland America ships were expected to arrive at the boundary of U.S. waters early Thursday, but local authorities still haven’t given Holland America the go-ahead to disembark over concern about the impact on public health. According to Holland America, 45 guests currently have “mild illness” and will stay isolated on the ship until recovered, even if the others disembark.The company said “less than 10” people need immediate critical care onshore.(Updates with president’s comments starting in sixth paragraph)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Bloomberg

    Carnival Boosts Bond Sale After 12% Yield Attracts $17 Billion

    (Bloomberg) -- Cruise line operator Carnival Corp. sold a larger-than-expected $4 billion of new secured bonds as part of an effort to raise over $6 billion from debt and stock sales to shore up liquidity amid turmoil caused by the coronavirus pandemic.It increased the three-year bond offering from the $3 billion originally targeted and cut the coupon to 11.5% from about 12.5% earlier, as order books swelled to around $17 billion, according to people familiar with the matter. The debt priced at a discount of 99 cents on the dollar, giving it a yield of just under 12%, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing a private matter.The financing was the biggest test yet of investor willingness to fund industries ravaged by the Covid-19 outbreak. Carnival has investment-grade ratings, but the bond sale is being managed by junk-bond syndicate desks and is one of the highest coupons ever offered even at the reduced interest rate. The vast majority of orders are from high-yield accounts, and about $2.6 billion came from incoming queries from investors, one of the people said.Investors have piled into new debt from America’s safest companies, but they’ve largely shunned riskier firms, especially those the virus has shuttered. While Carnival’s bonds are secured by a first-priority claim on the company’s assets such as its vessels and intellectual property, investors still can’t be sure when the company will sail again after a series of virus outbreaks at sea. Carnival still has ships at sea bearing sick passengers that are seeking to dock.Read more: Carnival begs for docks for virus-beset ships after weeks at seaThe company’s shares recorded their worst one-day drop on record on Wednesday, dropping by more than 33% to end trading at $8.80, its lowest close since 1993.Among other changes, the company’s share sale was reduced to $500 million from $1.25 billion, according to separate people with knowledge of the situation. It’s also raised $1.75 billion convertible notes to improve its liquidity position. Combined with the $3 billion the company drew on its bank credit lines last month, the bond and stock sales will give the company over $9 billion of additional liquidity.Carnival estimates it has liquidity needs of about $1 billion a month, according to a statement Tuesday. That includes ship and administrative operating costs of $200 million to $300 million. According to the company, it has to pay about $2 million to $3 million a month for a so-called warm ship layup, in which the ships are essentially decommissioned but kept ready to re-enter service relatively quickly. Longer-term ship layups cost about $1 million a month, it said.Carnival had initially approached bond investors on both sides of the Atlantic to sell $3 billion of notes in dollars and euros, but dropped the euro tranche which was marketed with a coupon of about 11.5%. JPMorgan Chase & Co., Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Bank of America Corp. led the dollar bond.Carnival earlier this year hosted one of the most dramatic coronavirus episodes aboard its Princess Cruises-branded Diamond Princess, off Yokohama, Japan. The Diamond Princess had more than 700 Covid-19 cases, the biggest outbreak outside mainland China for a while.The company urged Florida’s Broward County to accept on humanitarian grounds two Holland America Line ships, one bearing sick passengers, as they sailed for Fort Lauderdale with nowhere else to turn, Bloomberg reported Tuesday.(Updates bond pricing details, share sale size and stock performance starting in first paragraph.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Royal Caribbean Extends "Cruise with Confidence" Cancellation Policy Through Sept. 1 (revised)
    Zacks

    Royal Caribbean Extends "Cruise with Confidence" Cancellation Policy Through Sept. 1 (revised)

    The company's decision is in sync with the unpredictable circumstances evolving from the global crisis.

  • Carnival to Price Twice-Reduced Stock Sale at $8 a Share
    Bloomberg

    Carnival to Price Twice-Reduced Stock Sale at $8 a Share

    (Bloomberg) -- A downsized stock sale by Carnival Corp. priced $500 million of shares at $8 each, people familiar with the matter said.The company also priced $1.75 billion of convertible bonds at a 5.75% coupon and 25% conversion premium, one of the people added.The equity and equity-linked asset sales accompany a $4 billion debt offering by the cruise liner.Carnival was originally seeking buyers for $1.25 billion of shares, but reduced the offering to $750 million earlier on Wednesday. It was then reduced a second time to $500 million, the people said.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Do You Really Want to Bet Against Howard Marks?
    Bloomberg

    Do You Really Want to Bet Against Howard Marks?

    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- The optimism that permeated equity markets last week when U.S. stocks posted their biggest gains since the 1930s has once again given way to a feeling of despair, with the S&P 500 Index falling 6% over the course of two days. Yes, moves by fiscal and monetary authorities have shored up the all-important “plumbing” of the financial markets, but that is looking more and more like an act of triage than a catalyst to recovery. No one at this point in the pandemic crisis can confidently say how deep and long-lasting the coming recession will be, and that’s keeping markets stuck in their own form of purgatory. The conundrum facing investors was underscored by a pair of developments out of JPMorgan Chase & Co. this week. At the same time the biggest U.S. bank’s research department was pronouncing that most risk assets — a universe that typically includes stocks —   have seen their lows, its asset management division was cautioning investors against rushing to buy. In all fairness to JPMorgan, it’s not uncommon for different parts of the same financial firms to having opposing views. And contrasting views are what makes markets happen. But to cut through the noise, it’s often best to seek out the best and brightest, and in that regard, few on Wall Street compare with the legendary Howard Marks, whose Oaktree Capital Group LLC oversees about $125 billion. In a career that extends all the way back to the 1960s, Marks has seen it all — from the Vietnam War to the oil embargo of the 1970s, rampant inflation, double-digit interest rates, 1987’s Black Monday crash, catastrophic terrorist attacks on the U.S., a financial crisis and seven recessions. If that’s not impressive enough, consider that Warren Buffett once said that "when I see memos from Howard Marks in my mail, they're the first thing I open and read.” So, what did his latest memo released late Tuesday say? In essence, stay cautious.“Assets were priced fairly on Friday for the optimistic case but didn’t give enough scope for the possibility of worsening news,” Marks wrote in the note. He added that during the 2008 financial crisis, he was concerned about the implications for the economy from bankruptcies among financial institutions, but there was “no obvious threat to life and limb.” With the escalating Covid-19 pandemic, the range of negative outcomes seems much wider, he wrote. In other words, the path of least resistance for stocks is probably lower.THIS ISN’T HOW IT’S SUPPOSED TO WORKOne of the basic tenets of market theory is that dividend-paying stocks are inherently “safer” than those that don’t make payouts. The thinking is that dividend payers have stable and predictable cash flows. But like so much in markets these days, this theory is proving false. The S&P 500 Dividend Aristocrats Index, which tracks those companies in the benchmark gauge that have consistently increased payouts every year for at least 25 years, is down 26.4% this year, compared with a drop of 23.5% for the S&P 500. The strategists at BNY Mellon looked into the outlook for dividends and concluded that the market is pricing in a 41% drop in dividends for members of the S&P 500 through 2021, declining to $38 per share from a recent high of $63 per share. The good news is that markets expect dividends to begin to recover in 2022. The bad news is they won’t recover to their pre-coronavirus levels until 2030. What does that mean for stock prices? Perhaps a 20% decline from current levels, the strategists conclude.WHAT ARE THEY THINKING?The world is finding out just how hungry yield-starved investors have been. For years, bond investors have complained that yields were too low to compensate for the risk. In a world with $17 trillion of debt with negative yields, and yields overall hovering around 2% on average for much of the past decade, they weren’t wrong. But it’s not unusual for those who are starving to experience hallucinations, which may explain the booming demand for a bond offering from cruise line operator Carnival Corp. My Bloomberg Opinion colleagues Brian Chappatta and Matt Levine have pointed out here and here the seeming folly of lending money to a business that is facing the real risk of collapsing. But that hasn’t stopped the company from boosting the size of the offering to $4 billion from $3 billion, while trimming the proposed yield to 12% from 12.5%. Of course, such yields are well above the 9.5% for the average junk bond, but not outrageously so. The point here is that Carnival can issue bonds, suggesting credit markets aren’t experiencing a buyers’ strike. That’s something markets can be thankful for amidst all that is happening.WHO WILL RESCUE EMERGING MARKETS? Emerging markets took another beating Wednesday, with the MSCI EM Index of equities dropping as much as 2.75% to bring its year-to-date decline to 26%. An MSCI gauge measuring EM currencies has fallen 6.68% in 2020. To put that move into context, its previous record decline for a full year was 8.68% in 2008. (The index was launched in 1997.) The Institute for International Finance estimates that a record $83.3 billion was pulled out of emerging-market portfolios in March. There’s good reason for investors to be jittery. Unlike in the Group of 10 countries, many developing economies don’t have powerful central banks or financial authorities than can take the steps taken by the likes of the Federal Reserve. If they run into trouble, their only hope is a bailout by the International Monetary Fund. Citigroup says 85 countries have already asked the IMF for emergency assistance. It’s not an issue of money; the IMF says it has $1 trillion of lending capacity, with about a fifth of that having already been loaned or committed, according to Citigroup. The real issue lies in the IMF’s “traditional insistence on belt-tightening,” which “seems inappropriate in the current circumstances,” Citigroup notes. “One way of easing belt-tightening requirements will be to ask private-sector creditors to bear some of the burden of easing countries’ payments problems,” it added. No wonder so much has flowed out of emerging markets. TEA LEAVESIt’s time again for the world’s new most important economic number: weekly U.S. jobless claims. Last week’s numbers provided a glimpse of just how bad the coming employment situation will get. The government said a record 3.28 million people filed for unemployment insurance in the week ended March 21, surging from 282,000 the previous period and dwarfing median estimate of about 1.7 million. To be sure, those estimates were really just a stab in the dark, with forecasts ranging from 360,000 to 4.4 million. And Thursday’s number will be a crap shoot as well. The median estimate of economists surveyed by Bloomberg is for an increase to 3.6 million, but the forecasts range from 800,000 to 6.5 million. No one knows how to model an economy coming to a sudden stop, which is why estimates for most data points are all over the place. That’s likely to be the case through at least this month, helping to keep volatility elevated.DON’T MISS Markets Can’t Ignore 4 Crucial Uncertainties: Mohamed El-Erian  The Federal Reserve Shouldn’t Rescue Everyone: Bill Dudley Jeffrey Gundlach Stress Is All About the Dollar: Marcus Ashworth Critics of Stock Buybacks Will Outlast Coronavirus: Justin Fox Maybe Coronavirus Didn't End the Bull Market: Barry RitholtzThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg LP and its owners.Robert Burgess is an editor for Bloomberg Opinion. He is the former global executive editor in charge of financial markets for Bloomberg News. As managing editor, he led the company’s news coverage of credit markets during the global financial crisis.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinionSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • US STOCKS-Wall Street's major indexes slammed as virus anxiety grows
    Reuters

    US STOCKS-Wall Street's major indexes slammed as virus anxiety grows

    The key S&P 500 index was down more than 4% on Wednesday after a dire warning on the U.S. death toll from the coronavirus and heightened nerves over the upcoming earnings reporting season sent investors running from even the most defensive equities. The blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average and benchmark S&P 500 indexes were set to extend losses after suffering their worst first quarter as President Donald Trump warned Americans of a "painful" two weeks ahead and health officials highlighted research predictions of an enormous jump in virus-related deaths.

  • US STOCKS-Dow starts second quarter with 900-point slide as virus anxiety grows
    Reuters

    US STOCKS-Dow starts second quarter with 900-point slide as virus anxiety grows

    The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell more than 900 points on Wednesday as a plunge in new orders for U.S.-made goods and a dire warning on U.S. death toll from the coronavirus pushed investors away from stocks to safer assets. The blue-chip Dow and the S&P 500 were set to extend losses after suffering their worst first quarter as U.S. President Donald Trump warned Americans of a "painful" two weeks ahead, with health officials modeling an enormous jump in virus-related deaths. The financials sector was among the biggest drags on the S&P 500.

  • Zacks.com featured highlights include: TGNA, IART, PCG, CLGX and ABC
    Zacks

    Zacks.com featured highlights include: TGNA, IART, PCG, CLGX and ABC

    Zacks.com featured highlights include: TGNA, IART, PCG, CLGX and ABC

  • Western Union Ramps Up Digital Efforts Amid Coronavirus Woes
    Zacks

    Western Union Ramps Up Digital Efforts Amid Coronavirus Woes

    Western Union (WU) expands its digital services and account payout amid the COVID-19 scenario.

  • UK Banks Scrap Shareholder Distribution: US to Follow Suit?
    Zacks

    UK Banks Scrap Shareholder Distribution: US to Follow Suit?

    U.K.-based major banks bend to pressure from regulators and suspend shareholder distributions. Now, it's the turn of U.S. banks to do the same.

  • Five Below Extends Store Closures Amid Rising Coronavirus Fears
    Zacks

    Five Below Extends Store Closures Amid Rising Coronavirus Fears

    All Five Below (FIVE) stores to remain temporarily shut until the situation normalizes.

  • Why Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) Might Surprise This Earnings Season
    Zacks

    Why Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) Might Surprise This Earnings Season

    Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) is seeing favorable earnings estimate revision activity and has a positive Zacks Earnings ESP heading into earnings season.

  • Carnival Boosts Dollar Bond Offering Amid Rampant Demand
    Bloomberg

    Carnival Boosts Dollar Bond Offering Amid Rampant Demand

    (Bloomberg) -- Cruise line operator Carnival Corp., one of the companies on the frontline of the coronavirus pandemic, has increased its dollar bond offering after scrapping plans to issue part of it in euros.The company raised its debt issuance to $4 billion on Wednesday after it had earlier approached bond investors on both sides of the Atlantic to sell $3 billion of notes in dollars and euros, according to people with knowledge of the transaction. But with investors piling into the dollar offering, Carnival pulled the plug on the euro tranche.The deal is oversubscribed, with orders exceeding $10 billion, one person said. The dollar-denominated portion had been marketed with a coupon of about 12.5%, while European investors were offered around 11.5%. Carnival has now cut the dollar coupon to 12%.Given that the dollar offering is so large, “why would you go into a much more illiquid tranche” in euros, Mark Benbow, a fund manager who helps manage about $1.5 billion across high-yield strategies at Kames Capital, said. “The discount you’re getting on the euro one was quite small anyways. It kind of didn’t make sense.”The decision to drop the euro issue wasn’t a question of demand and came down to currency preference, according to a person familiar with the matter. The European high-yield market has been shut for the past month as borrowing costs soared.JPMorgan Chase & Co., Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Bank of America Corp. are leading the Carnival bond sale, which is expected to complete on Wednesday.Recovery BetKames Capital hasn’t made a decision on whether to buy the bonds, but Benbow views the deal as interesting. He’s hopeful the cruising industry will recover after the coronavirus pandemic slows down.Two points that caught his attention on Tuesday’s conference call on the bond offering: the company received 39,000 bookings since it stopped sailing, and 45% of customers chose credit for future trips as opposed to cash refunds.Still, even with ships as collateral, investors can’t be sure when Carnival will sail again after a series of Covid-19 outbreaks at sea raised concern about the safety of the industry.Carnival representatives in the U.S. didn’t immediately return requests for comments.Carnival is taking advantage of a rebound in credit markets which have seen more than $200 billion of debt sold in the U.S. and Europe over the past week. Carnival, run out of Miami is incorporated in Panama. While it derives some revenue from Europe, it gets most of its business from the U.S.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Walgreens Boots Stock Falls 4%
    Investing.com

    Walgreens Boots Stock Falls 4%

    Investing.com - Walgreens Boots (NASDAQ:WBA) Stock fell by 4.05% to trade at $43.87 by 12:39 (16:39 GMT) on Wednesday on the NASDAQ exchange.

  • Can Retail Pharmacy USA Aid Walgreen Boots' (WBA) Q2 Earnings?
    Zacks

    Can Retail Pharmacy USA Aid Walgreen Boots' (WBA) Q2 Earnings?

    Solid prescription volume growth and brand inflation anticipated to have aided Walgreen Boots' (WBA) Retail Pharmacy USA performance in Q2.