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High-yield junk market still attractive: top bond manager Margaret Patel

NEW YORK ( ) – The gains in high-yield junk bonds are not over, thanks to the Federal Reserve’s supportive stance on monetary policy, Margaret Patel, one of the mutual-fund industry’s longest tenured and most well-known bond managers, said on Tuesday.

“The risk-taker will be rewarded,” Patel, a senior portfolio manager at Wells Fargo Asset Management, said at the New York headquarters of . The ICE Merrill Lynch U.S. high-yield index has posted returns of 8.92% so fa上海夜生活论坛r this year. Patel’s Wells Fargo High Yield Bond fund is up 8.68% for the same period.

“I see a downward drift in yields in junk bonds,” she said.

Patel, who has more than 40 years’ experience in the business, said the Fed will not be cutting off liquidity and could, in fact, slash interest rates this year. The Fed’s potential cuts will trigger another wave of gains and access to credit for high-yield companies, which issue debt with less-than-stellar credit ratings called junk bonds.

“Why should junk bond spreads be 450 basis points over Treasuries if defaults are a needle in a haystack? Makes no sense,” Patel said.

The economy is slowing down but not to the point of recessionary levels, Patel said. She characterizes the economic backdrop as marked by “low inflation, modest growth, low interest rates and low volatility.”

As a result, junk bond returns will continue to be modest for a number of years, Patel said. She favors the industrial, healthcare and technology sectors.

For their part, U.S. equities “could definitely move higher,” she added.

After starting as an equities analyst, Patel eventually became a portfolio manager where her reputation rose primarily on the bond side. Before joining Pioneer Investments in 1999, Patel had started a bond fund for Third Avenue’s fund family. It was later acquired by the Boston asset manager.

‘Go to hell!’ A divided America struggles to heal after ugly election

(Editors note: Attention to language in paragraph 30 that may be offensive to some readers)

By Jason Szep

ELLSWORTH, Maine ( ) – “He lies,” huffed Janet Foster.

“And he’s a dirty old man,” chimed in her sister Jean as they discussed Donald Trump’s flaws a few days before he was elected the new president of the United States.

“Well, I am with him,” their brother Paul, 60, interjected, raising his voice over snacks of cheese, muffins and crackers in the family’s living room. “Hillary Clinton is like a puppet – you know it’s all scripted.”

The 2016 U.S. election was unprecedented in the way it turned Americans against each other, according to dozens of interviews in rural United States and across some of the most politically charged battleground states.

It divided families like the Fosters in rural Ellsworth, Maine, broke up friendships and turned neighbor against neighbor.

In a recent /Ipsos survey, 15 percent of respondents said they had stopped talking to a family member or close friend as a result of the election. For Democrats, this shoots up to 23 percent, compared to 10 perce上海夜生活论坛nt for Republicans. And 12 percent had ended a relationship because of it.

There was no comparative polling data from previous elections. But interviews with relationship counselors and voters suggest this election stood out by summoning passions, anger and a divisiveness in ways that will make healing difficult after Clinton’s loss to Trump on Tuesday.

Sarah Guth, a Democrat in Colorado, says her father – an ardent supporter of Trump – no longer speaks with her after they clashed on Facebook over their political views.

“He crossed a line,” she said.

After attending a Trump rally, Guth wrote on Facebook that she saw 10 minorities among thousands of people. “I’m increasingly convinced that this election is about race,” she wrote. “I mean a fear among the white majority that their rule is coming to an end.”

Some posters told her “to go to hell,” she recalled in an interview. “And then my dad very publicly attacked me, telling me that I should be ashamed of myself.” The two have not spoken since.

Ty Turner-Bond, a 35-year-old black man in North Carolina, says he lost friends because of his support for Trump. Some called him an “Uncle Tom,” a slur for African Americans accused of deferring to white people; others threatened violence.

“PEOPLE ARE TENSE”

In Springfield, a city on Ohio’s Mad River, Duke Level, 57, voted for Trump because he wanted “a wrecking ball” to hit Washington. The owner of Un Mundo Cafe isn’t surprised this election created divisions, and he fears they could get worse.

“This is one of those crossroads crisis moments in history,” he said.

Hours earlier, Trump rallied about 5,000 supporters a few miles away in a dirt-floored livestock arena. He blasted Clinton as “the most corrupt person ever to seek the office of the presidency,” drawing chants of “lock her up,” as well as a few of “string her up.”

Down the street, Richard Scott, 51, an African-American supporting Clinton, shook his head when told of those chants. Those words, he said, recalled 20th Century lynchings of black Americans – including in Springfield where a black prisoner was shot and hung from a pole on Main Street in 1904.

“It’s terrible,” he said.

Weeks ago, he planted a Clinton sign in his yard. His neighbors put up Trump signs. Outside the funeral home he owns, a pro-Clinton sign was defaced with a “Hillary for Prison” sticker. “People are tense,” said Scott.

The election hardened an already-clear racial divide in the former industrial city of 60,000 people – a snapshot of America at about 75 percent white and 18 percent black. Interviews with residents suggested its northern areas, mostly affluent and white, would vote for Trump, while its mostly black, lower-income southern section would largely support Clinton.

“There is a division in this town, economically and racial. And we saw that in this election,” said Bob Leath, 58, owner of Buckeye PC Repair who voted for Trump to “clean house” in Washington. “If you voted for Clinton, you were most likely either young, lower-income or from the south side of the area.”

For some, the tensions reach the bedroom. Sam Nail, a Cincinnati marriage counselor, said he has two couples who cited the election season as a “stressor” in their relationship.

Much of the anger gets uncorked on social media and will be hard to undo. Some is well publicized. National Review writer David French has written about “an unending torrent of abuse” he and his family faced online from white nationalist Trump supporters, including a Tweeted image of his 7-year-old daughter’s face in a gas chamber.

Others are less well known, like Brenda Thomas’ tangles with her older brother on Facebook. She says her brother unleashed a daily stream of Facebook posts on Clinton and President Barack Obama that she found objectionable. She said when her husband, a Republican, tried to reason with him, he was “unfriended” on Facebook.

“I feel that I have to walk on eggshells with him and it causes problems at family functions,” said Thomas, 63, of Elizabethtown, Kentucky.  

In Charlotte, North Carolina, Karen Wilson, describes this election as “stressful” on Facebook. “I’ve got family members who are mad at me for deleting entire Facebook threads when I thought they were becoming too negative. I’ve deleted Facebook friends who I realized I never should have been friends with in the first place,” said Wilson, 43.

Fourteen percent of respondents in the /Ipsos poll said they had blocked a family member or close friend from social media because of the election. For Democrats, this rises to 23 percent compared to 8 percent for Republicans.

“FREE SPEECH ATTACK”

The divisions tore into the fabric of some communities. In Provo, Utah, Trump supporter Loy Brunson awoke on an October morning to find his car spray-painted with the words “AmeriKKKa” – a reference to “KKK” white supremacists – and “Fuck Trump.” His two Trump yard signs were destroyed.

“So I doubled down, got motivated and put up 85 signs in my yard,” he said. Within days, all but six of those were stolen.

“This was more than vandalism,” he said in an interview. “This was a free speech attack.”

Some blame the divisiveness on campaign rhetoric that inflamed racial, ethnic and class tensions that have long simmered in America. Angry and extremist language moved into the mainstream.

George Lakoff, a linguistics professor at University of California, Berkeley, blames Trump’s use of language, which he ranks as among the most violent of any candidate in modern times. He specifically notes Trump’s suggestion in August that gun rights activists could take matters into their own hands if Clinton defeated him, as well as the New York businessman’s comments that she should go to prison.

“When you have extremes of that order, you have extremes of anger, extremes of fear,” Lakoff said.

In Mississippi, Chad Scott, an activist in the Clay County Republican Party, fears a post-election split between the party’s working-class Trump supporters and business-minded elites – a sentiment echoed in Maine, where Foster, the Ellsworth resident at odds with his sisters, witnessed the election’s political vitriol first hand. 

Foster’s van was one of 20 vehicles spray-painted outside a Trump rally on Oct. 15 in the city of Bangor. And across Ellsworth, pro-Trump yard signs were stolen almost as fast as they were planted, Republican officials say.

Foster worries about the divisions ahead.

“My sisters will forgive me for my political views,” he said.  “But the country is going to be on fire.”

Democratic voter-intimidation cases falter in three U.S. states

WASHINGTON ( ) – Democrats fell short in three U.S. states on Monday in their legal battle to impose tighter restrictions on supporters of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump who plan to monitor Election Day voting for signs of fraud.

The U.S. Supreme Court refused to reimpose new rules on partisan poll watchers in Ohio after an appeals court struck them down, while U.S. judges in Pennsylvania and North Carolina declined Democrats’ request to impose new rules that Democrats had sought.

Voter intimidation is prohibited under U.S. law, but Democrats worry that Trump’s warnings of a “rigged” election in his battle against Democrat Hillary Clinton might inspire supporters to 上海夜生活论坛harass minority voters and create Election Day chaos in big cities as they search for signs of vote manipulation.

Numerous studies have found that U.S. voter fraud is exceedingly rare.

Democrats have asked U.S. courts in six battleground states to impose greater restrictions on partisan poll watchers, arguing that the Trump campaign, state Republican parties and Republican operative Roger Stone are encouraging supporters to intimidate minority voters.

Trump’s campaign and Republican parties in the various states say their poll watchers are trained to bring evidence of any problems to the party and not confront voters directly.

“This was an attempt to intimidate Republican people engaging in lawful activity,” North Carolina Republican Party executive director Dallas Woodhouse told .

Stone says those working for his planned “exit poll” will be trained to use neutral, non-threatening language.

One day before the election, Democrats so far have failed to win any of their legal efforts.

A U.S. judge denied the Democrats’ case in Arizona on Friday. Monday’s rulings in North Carolina and Pennsylvania give Democrats little time for appeals, while the Supreme Court’s Monday ruling put to rest the case filed in Ohio.

The Supreme Court order, which only covers the Ohio case, included no noted dissents from the eight justices. Liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote a brief statement noting that “Ohio law proscribes voter intimidation” and citing the relevant law.

U.S. judges in Michigan and Nevada have yet to issue opinions.

Democrats have waged a separate legal battle against the Republican National Committee, arguing in court that the RNC should be prevented from supporting the Trump campaign’s poll-watching effort. A U.S. judge in New Jersey denied that motion on Saturday.

Oil rebounds as Trump says letter revives China trade hopes

HOUSTON ( ) – Brent oil futures settled slightly higher on Thursday, rebounding from a drop after U.S. President Donald Trump revived investor hopes that the United States might not raise tariffs on Chinese imports, a step that could hit economic growth and crimp oil demand.

The trade dispute between the world’s two biggest economies and a sharp drop in global equity markets has hit oil prices, outweighing geopolitical tensions and supply cuts that have lowered global supplies from Latin America, Africa and the Middle East.

Brent settled 2 cents higher at $70.39 a barrel, rebounding from a session low of $69.40 a barrel. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures settled down 42 cents at $61.70 per barrel.

Prices bounced off session lows after Trump said he received a “beautiful letter” from Chinese President Xi Jinping. Trump quoted the letter as saying: “Let’s work together let’s see if we can get something done.”

The letter fed investor hopes Washington and Beijing might clinch a trade deal, said Bob Yawger, director of energy futures at Mizuho in New York.

The trade row has dragged economic growth in Asia and a breakdown in Sino-American negotiations could call global crude demand forecasts into question, said John Kilduff, a partner at Again Capital Management LLC.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration expects global oil demand to rise by 1.4 million barrels per day (bpd) this year.

“It’s why OPEC is being a bit stingy with barrels,” Kilduff said, referring to output cuts by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies including Russia. “They don’t want to step into that situation if the trade talks go off the rails.”

OPEC’s top producer Saudi Arabia has been reluctant to add barrels to global supply because it fears a price crash, even as the organization is unsure of global supplies for the second half of the year, OPEC sources said.

U.S. sanctions on Venezuela and Iran, and threats to oil supplies in Nigeria in Libya have supported oil prices, mitigating the impact of the trade dispute, analysts said. Brent and WTI have risen more than 30 percent so far this year.

“The supply uncertainty is what’s holding the (U.S. oil) market above $60 a barrel,” said Phillip Streible, senior market strategist at RJO Futures in Chicago. “The demand uncertainty is what has it in the red today. But we’re holding pretty good.”

Earlier this week, data showing a surprise drop in U.S. crude inventories also buoyed prices.

The U.S. tariffs on $200 b上海夜生活论坛illion of Chinese goods would rise to 25 percent without a deal on Friday. China has threatened to retaliate, triggering a flight to safety among investors.

(Graphic: U.S. crude inventories, weekly changes since 2017 – tmsnrt.rs/2XfuQqn)

Billionaire Schwartz makes $2.6 billion bet on Canada’s WestJet Airlines

( ) – Billionaire Gerry Schwartz pounced on Canada’s WestJet Airlines on Monday as his private equity firm Onex Corp offered to buy the struggling airline for C$3.5 billion ($2.6 billion), betting it can turn around its recent decline by taking the company private.

The surprise offer for C$31 a share, a 67% premium to their closing price on Friday, sparked a surge in WestJet shares, which closed up 60% at $29.61. If completed, it would be the biggest private equity deal ever for an airline, according to Refinitiv data.

If Onex obtains shareholder and regulatory approvals, the deal would help Schwartz get his hands on an airline two decades after he missed out on buying Air Canada, WestJet’s bigger rival. Air Canada shares rose more than 5%.

WestJet shares, which touched a record high of C$34.95 in December 2014, have recently been trading at almost half that level. The airline has reported declining net profit for each of the last three years, hurt by rising fuel costs, pressure on ticket prices and other issues.

Even before the global grounding of Boeing’s 737 MAX jets in March, WestJet’s earnings had slipped as it worked to contain costs as its workforce unionized and was spending money on bold growth plans to expand international travel, introduce first class cabins and launch a budget carrier called Swoop.

Up to Friday’s close, WestJet shares had fallen 5.5% in the last 12 months while Air Canada shares gained 58%. American rival United Continental Holdings, the company that owns United Airlines, rose 28% in the same period.

“The ‘why now?’ is valuation,” said AltaCorp Capital analyst Chris Murray.

Onex, founded in 1984 by Schwartz who started out at Bear Stearns & Co in the 1970s, approached WestJet’s board in March. Neither Schwartz, nor any other Onex executive was available to comment.

WestJet Chief Executive Ed Sims said on BNN that the deal will allow the company to execute on its long-term growth strategy without the constraints of quarterly scrutiny. It is “a reaffirmation that the path we’re on is actually a path towards long-term profitability irrespective上海夜生活网 of the sort of headwinds that you refer to that we saw regularly in 2018.”

LONG HISTORY

With about $31 billion of assets under management, Onex is not new to investing in the aerospace industry. It bought Spirit AeroSystems from Boeing Co in 2005 and exited its investment in 2014 after making $3.2 billion.

Under Schwartz, who remains CEO, Onex tried to buy Air Canada in 1999 and merge it with now defunct Canadian Airlines, but that attempt failed. Onex shares closed up 4% in a broadly lower market.

Air Canada Chief Executive Calin Rovinescu declined to comment on the Onex deal, telling “it’s business as usual,” on the sidelines of the Air Transport Action Group conference in Montreal.

The Onex bid follows a deal last week where low-cost Latin American airline Viva Air received a $50 million investment from U.S. capital fund Cartesian Capital Group that it will direct toward expansion.

And the parent company of Montreal-based Air Transat has said it is in talks with more than one party regarding a potential transaction, although it is not yet clear what group might buy it.

Onex could “ultimately look” to also acquire Transat to “complement WestJet’s offering,” wrote Desjardins analyst Benoit Poirier in a note to clients. Transat AT stock was up 4 percent in afternoon trading.

The WestJet purchase will be led by Onex Partners, Onex’s private equity platform focused on larger investments. The airline’s board has urged shareholders to vote in favor.

The deal is subject to a number of conditions, including court and shareholder approval and receipt of certain regulatory approvals, including under the Canada Transportation Act.

In Ottawa, Federal Transport Minister Marc Garneau said at first glance the proposed takeover looked fairly standard in terms of an acquisition.

“I am not going to prejudge until I see the details whether there are any regulatory obstacles – at first glance it doesn’t seem to be anything special,” he told reporters.

NO CHANGE TO ‘COMPETITIVE LANDSCAPE’

Alberta’s Premier said on Monday that WestJet and Onex have assured him the carrier’s headquarters will remain in Calgary after the deal.

Chris Rauenbusch, president of the union local representing WestJet flight attendants, said he supports the deal after being informed by company executives that it would not lead to any layoffs among the carrier’s 14,000 employees, while permitting the continuation of its growth strategy.

“We do not believe this transaction dramatically alters the competitive landscape, at least negatively,” Canaccord Genuity analyst Doug Taylor said.

A spokesman for Delta Air Lines said the proposed transaction does not impact plans to implement a U.S-Canada trans-border joint venture with WestJet.

The deal, which has a value of $5 billion including debt, is expected to close in the latter part of this year or early next year.

CIBC Capital Markets and BofA Merrill Lynch were the financial advisers to WestJet, while Barclays, Morgan Stanley and RBC Capital Markets advised Onex.

Private equity Sycamore says Chico’s declined to engage on buyout offer

May 10 ( ) – Sycamore Partners LP said on Friday struggling women’s apparel retailer Chico’s FAS Inc has declined to engage with the private equity firm on its cash offer to buy the company for $407.8 million.

In an SEC filing, Sycamore disclosed a 6.6% stake in the company, making it the fourth largest shareholder in Chico’s. The private equity had offered about $3.50 per Chico’s share, a discount of 5.4% to the company’s Thursday close.

Chico’s FAS, which is known for its Soma brand of women’s intimate apparels, operates more than 1,000 stores in the United States and Canada and also sells its merchandise online.

The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The 36-year-old retailer has b上海夜网een struggling with sales dropping for at least the last three years and is in the middle of a search for a new chief executive officer after Shelley Broader abruptly resigned in April.

“Given the rate and severity of the deterioration of the company’s business, we believe that it is in the best interests of all stockholders for the board to create those options,” Sycamore said in a letter to Chico’s board, which was part of the filing.

Shares of the company, which have fallen nearly 62% in the last one year, were up 2% in early morning trade.

METALS-Copper steady as economic concerns jostle with China demand hopes

* LME copper stocks 30 pct below levels last August

* Zinc stocks d上海夜生活own nearly 80 percent since August

* GRAPHIC-2019 asset returns: tmsnrt.rs/2jvdmXl (Updates with official prices)

By Pratima Desai

LONDON, March 18 ( ) – Copper prices held steady on Monday, bolstered by expectations of seasonally strong Chinese demand in the second quarter and low stocks but capped by concern over the impact of continuing trade tensions on the global economy.

Benchmark copper on the London Metal Exchange closed little changed at $6,425 a tonne, down 0.1 percent, with prices having traded in a $200 range since the middle of February.

“The second quarter is normally the strongest in terms of physical activity; stocks are low and supply tightness is evident in metals like copper,” said Societe Generale analyst Robin Bhar.

“Our concerns would be the macro overlay, slowing global growth and the unresolved U.S.-China trade dispute.”

CHINA: China accounts for about half of global demand for industrial metals, which increases in the April to June period because of restocking ahead of rising construction activity in the second quarter.

TRADE: Investor sentiment on trade has see-sawed on rumblings coming out of the negotiations between the world’s two biggest economies after the imposition of tit-for-tat tariffs.

“The uncertainty over U.S.-China trade could be decisive for industrial metals in the short term,” ANZ analysts said in a note.

“We see renewed supply issues in some of the metals, copper and zinc, which could widen the market deficit. This leaves little room for replenishing depleted inventories.”

STOCKS: Copper inventories of 183,825 tonnes in LME-approved warehouses are up from less than 112,000 tonnes last Tuesday but still more than 30 percent below levels last August. MCUSTX-TOTAL

Higher stocks have shrunk the premium for the cash contract over three-month copper to about $30 a tonne from $70 in early March. CMCU0-3

ZINC: Stocks of zinc under LME warrant are down nearly 80 percent since August to less than 60,000 tonnes, creating a large premium for the cash contract over three-month metal. MZNSTX-TOTAL The premium was last at $50 a tonne. CMZN0-3

In contrast, stocks in warehouses monitored by the Shanghai Futures Exchange have climbed above 124,000 tonnes from around 20,000 tonnes at the end of last year. ZN-STX-SGH

Combined with an estimated 80,000 tonnes of zinc stocks in bonded warehouses in Shanghai, that takes the total in China to more than 200,000 tonnes.

PRICES: Aluminium closed 1.2 percent up at $1,920.50 a tonne, zinc dipped by 0.3 percent to $2,781, lead slipped by 1.1 percent to $2,040, tin added 0.5 percent to $21,175 and nickel firmed by 0.1 percent to $12,950.

Preview: RB Leipzig – Hamburger SV

Flashscore presents the key facts before the match:

Hamburger will definitely look for the win, in order to have a good start under their new manager, Bernd Hollerbach.

RB Leipzig have been highly-inconsistent since the start of the new season, falling short of the high expectations they set up last year. Their disappointing 2-1 loss to Freiburg last weekend simply came to show the problems in the team, who have won just one out of their last six Bundesliga games ( W1, D2, L3 ).

Hamburger, however, are not in a bright spot either. They are deep in the relegation zone with just 15 points after 19 games. They have lost their last four Bundesliga games.

Hamburger’s last win came in November. Only bottom-placed Cologne have lost more league games than Hamburg so far (12).

Players to watch: Timo Werner has scored three goals in the last three games between the two sides. Will he be able to add more ?Four-goal hero Gnabry’s father banned him from joining Bayern Andrew Smyth – Bayern Munich’s four-goal hero Serge Gnabry revealed that his own father initially banned him from signing up for the club as a 10-year-old.

Missing players:

Hamburger: Ekdal A. (上海夜生活论坛ankle injury), Muller N.(knee injury).

Under question:

RB Leipzig: Coltorti F.(Muscle Injury), Forsberg E.(Injury), Halstenberg M.(Hand Injury), Keita N.(Thigh Injury).

Hamburger: Hunt A.(Injury), Thoelke B.(Injury).

Preview: Austria Vienna – AEK Athens

The last round of games in Europa League (EL) Group D sees a straight shootout between Austria Vienna (third) and AEK Athens (second) to see who will progress to the next phase as the second-placed team. For Vienna, nothing but a win will suffice which will give them the edge on AEK due a superior head-to-head, while AEK only need to avoid defeat.

Flashscore presents the key facts before the match:

Both sides come into this game on the back of contrasting fortunes. Vienna are on a quite miserable run, winning just three games out of their last fourteen in all competitions and losing nine (two draws). The second most successful club (to Rapid) in the Austrian game find themselves in a mid-table position in their home league, a whopping 18 points off Salzburg in top spot.

AEK are in much better health and find themselves top of the Greek Super League after going on a run on five unbeaten games in the league and nine in all competitions. Striker Marko Livaja has scored five goals in his last four league games in that time and also notched two in the 2-2 draw between the sides on matchday two, including the last minute equalizer.

Vienna have lost both of their home ties in this year’s EL, and face a side in AEK who have so far gained more points on the road than at home (four as opposed to three). Indeed, Vienna are winless in their last seven European home games (D2, L5) and have one solitary victory to their name in 15 EL/UEFA Cup group games at home! AEK are yet to taste defeat in their last seven European games, drawing the last four, but have only scored in one away game in their last five EL away days!Solskjaer “very pleased” after another failure to win George Patchias – Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said he was “very pleased,” even though United failed to win yet again.It is now ten games on the road since…

With AEK just needing a point and already managing to cancel out group winners AC Milan twice among their four draws, this might turn out to be a hard night for Vienna against a disciplined Greek defence. However, Vienna captain Raphael Holzhauser was upbeat ahead of the game, saying: “It’s time for a home win, there is no better way.” Only time will tell if his confidence was justified.

Missing players

Austria Vienna: R. Almer (knee injury), A. Grunwald (injury), F. Klein (injury), C. Martschinko (knee injury), H. Westermann (knee injury), A. Borkovic (doubtful),上海夜生活 V. Demaku (doubtful)

AEK Athens: J. Johansson (knee injury), P. Mantalos (knee injury), U. Cosic (doubtful), K. Lamropoulos (doubtful), A. Traustason (doubtful), A. Vlachomitros (doubtful).

Lingard wants to make sure that Manchester will be red

The Manchester United youngster, Jesse Lingard, tried to boost the confidence of his side before the upcoming derby clash against Manchester City by saying that the city has to be red after that fixture.

The young winger insisted that he can’t see any reason why his Red Devils can’t beat the league leaders at home and start chasing them – the Citizens are now eight points ahead of their rivals but the title race is still far from being over. Jesse Lingard seems to be highly motivated for that clash and he wants to do his best to help his side in their effo上海夜生活rt to minimize the deficit in the Premier League table.

The Englishman spoke about the upcoming game as he said, according to Goal: “I am confident. It’s two great teams going out there and you don’t know what the game is going to be like. It might be a battle; it might not be pretty. But if we come out on top, it’s always good for the city of Manchester. We need to make sure that Manchester is red at the end of the day. Like us, they have lots of big players.”Solskjaer “very pleased” after another failure to win George Patchias – Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said he was “very pleased,” even though United failed to win yet again.It is now ten games on the road since…

He added that Manchester City are very strong and he pointed out two specific key players: “When [Kevin] De Bruyne’s on the ball, he’s always got that eye for a killer pass that can put a player one-on-one with the keeper, and Raheem Sterling’s been popping up with the late goals.”

In the end, Jesse Lingard claimed that he will forget his friendships with the opposition players for these 90 minutes: “You know quite a lot of them [City’s Academy players] growing up, and through the England set-up as well. I’m good friends with Raheem [Sterling] off the pitch. But when you’re on the pitch, there are no friends and we’re there to do a job and win the game.”

Neymar’s bonus for Ballon d’Or

PSG have promised to reward Neymar in case the Brazilian manages to win the Ballon d’Or trophy.

The record transfer of Neymar from Barcelona to PSG continues to impress with the numbers included in the deal. The Parisians paid the €222m release clause in the Brazilian’s contract and offered him wages of around €100k per day (€36,8m/year), making him the most expensive and the best paid player in the world.

In addition to that, Neymar also has a clause in his contract that will see him earn a bonus of €3m every time he manages to win the Ballon d’Or trophy, according to Le Parisien.

Since 2008, the Ballon d’Or award has only been won by Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. The Argentinian took the trophy home 5 times, while the Portuguese is still one behind his rival. However, Ronaldo has big chances of equalling Messi’s number of trophies this year.Report: Icardi opens PSG account in 0-1 win over Gala George Patchias – Mauro Icardi opened上海夜网 his goal-scoring account for PSG in a 0-1 away victory over Galatasaray.While Thomas Tuchel has begun to integrate Mauro Icardi into…

Even though Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are again the favourites for the award this year, Neymar also has a chance. He has been included on the 30-men shortlist for the FIFA gala that will take place in December and that will announce the winner.

26 years have passed since the last time a player from the French league won the Ballon d’Or. In 1991, Jean-Pierre Papin was awarded the trophy. That year, Papin helped Olympique Marseille reach the Champions League final, where they eventually lost to Red Star Belgrade, 3-5 at penalties.

Muller continues the attacks on Ancelotti

Carlo Ancelotti has left Bayern Munich after multiple players complained about his methods.

After the appointing of Jupp Heynckes, some of Bayern’s players are still hitting out at their former manager. Most recently, Thomas Muller stated that he is certain the arrival of Heynckes will bring a revival in the team’s playing style.

The German midfielder was, along with Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben, decisive for the departure of Carlo Ancelotti, after the 3-0 defeat to PSG in Champions League.Report: Ancelotti’s Napoli held by Genk George Patchias – Carlo Ancelotti’s Napoli side was held to a scoreless draw by Belgian side Genk.This game was billed as a goal fest for the Italian…

Immediately after the appointing of Heynckes, one of the first reactions of Muller was: “Finally we will have good training sessions again”, hinting at the low quality of trainings under Ancelotti.

Speaking about the managerial change, Thomas Muller said: “Now we have no excuses. A change of manager always brings energy and we, the players, have to give everything. Both Jupp Heynckes and his staff came with a lot of energy to trainings from the beginning.” 

Bayern’s first match 上海夜网with Heynckes on the bench is to be played on Saturday, 15:30. The Bavarians will host Freiburg at Allianz Arena. Bayern are currently second in the standings, with 14 points after 7 rounds, five less than Bundesliga leaders, Borussia Dortmund.

Griezmann: “I don’t regret staying in Madrid”

Antoine Griezmann has been struggling to perform properly this season so far but when asked whether he regrets not leaving Atletico or not, he insisted that he is still happy in Madrid and not thinking about leaving this winter.

The Frenchman has been constantly linked with a move away from Diego Simeone’s side, who are 10 points off La Liga leaders Barcelona and are on the brink of exiting the Champions League at the group stages, according to Sky Sports. Barcelona and Manchester United are said to be heavily interested in signing the Frenchman but the situation still remains unclear.

The former Real Sociedad player spoke about his situation as he said: “I do not regret having stayed at Atletico. It was my choice, I am happy with my choice, even though I have gone seven games without scoring. I will score again soon. In addition, Diego Costa and Vitolo will come, so we’ll try to keep the team high enough. These two reinforcements will do us good. An exit agreement? I did not speak about that with the president.”Joao Felix keeps making history with Atletico Madrid Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – After yet another stellar performance with Atletico Madrid, Joao Felix made history after scoring his first goal vs Lokomotiv.Atletico Madrid had a complicated visit…

He also made a comment on the rumours connecting him with Manchester United: “I didn’t express myself very well. It’s like the other day, with the game “Yes or No”, when they asked me: ‘Would you like to play with Mbappe and Neymar?’ I answered yes but that does not mean that I want to go to PSG.”

In the end, Antoine Griezmann added: “I’m happy with all my performances with the national team but with only two or three Atletico matches. I have to improve and find my best form. It depends on me, how I train and work. There are games where I 上海夜生活don’t even get one shot on target and that’s my problem. I have to work to take the team to the top.”

Claudio Ranieri might become the next manager of Nantes if French Football Federation approves the deal

French FF rule prevents clubs from appointing managers aged over 65Written by – Nikolay Nikolov, June 13, 2017.

Claudio Ranieri has agreed on a deal which can bring him back to football for the first time since he was sacked by Leicester City. However, the deal might not be approved by the French Football Federation due to his age.

The Italian is set to become the next manager of Ligue 1 club Nantes, who are awaiting a confirmation of the deal.

A rule states, that clubs cannot appoint managers who are over the age of 65, which is exactly the age that Ranieri turned in October last year.

Nantes president Waldemar Kita was confident that the deal will go through and expressed his interest in the experience that the Italian has.Kane: Spurs out of excuses after shock Carabao Cup exit Andrew Smyth – Harry Kane concedes that Tottenham only have themselves to blame following a shock Carabao Cup exit at the hands of Colchester United.

‘The league agrees, I believe that only the FFF is delaying the appointment a little, I do not know why.

‘What we are interested in is the experience of Ranieri as a footballer and coach, since we know that he has coached the biggest teams in Europe.’

Ranieri won the Premier League in his first season as a manager of Leicester City in 2015-16. However, he was sacked in February 2017 after series of disappointing results that left Leicester in relegation danger.

Ranieri’s experience includes managing Fiorentina, Valencia, Atletico Madrid, Chelsea, Juventus, Monaco and the Greece national team.

Now, he wan上海夜生活网ts to return to the French Ligue 1. Appointment of over 65 aged managers has been done before when Lens were allowed to appoint veteran coach Guy Roux.

Exclusive: PSA, Dongfeng to drop two China auto plants, halve workforce – document

BEIJING/PARIS ( ) – Peugeot maker PSA Group (PEUP.PA) and partner Dongfeng Group (0489.HK) have agreed to cut thousands of jobs in China and drop two of their four shared assembly plants, according to a document seen by , in a last-ditch bid to curb mounting losses as the world’s largest auto market loses steam.

Dongfeng Peugeot Citroen Automobiles (DPCA), the carmakers’ joint venture based in Wuhan, central China, will halve its workforce to 4,000 as it closes one plant and sells another under plans agreed last month between PSA boss Carlos Tavares and Dongfeng Chairman Zhu Yanfeng, the document showed.

Both carmakers declined to comment on details of their restructuring plans. “We are working with our partners to improve the overall performance of our business in China in all its dimensions,” a PSA spokesman said.

The agreement may avert a threatened withdrawal by PSA, according to two sources at the French carmaker who said their chief executive had signaled that PSA might otherwise exit the 27-year-old partnership with its 12.2% shareholder Dongfeng, or even leave China altogether.

“We’re just a whisker away from having to withdraw from China,” said one person close to the PSA board. “It really is that serious.”

PSA is attempting a reboot in adverse conditions. Once an auto industry cash cow, the Chinese market contracted last year for the first time since the 1990s and is expected to decline another 5% in 2019, squeezed by a worse上海夜生活ning U.S.-China trade war.

Many Western carmakers were already struggling before the downturn, as Chinese consumers abandoned their mid-market brands for increasingly assertive domestic rivals here including the global manufacturers’ own local partners.

PSA’s deep China problems go back even further, spanning four years of plunging sales and 400 million euros ($450 million) written off its DPCA stake, which is now valued at 500 million euros.

Its sales in the country shrunk almost threefold to 251,700 vehicles last year from a 2014 peak of 731,000.

“We’re not giving up,” a PSA spokesman said. “We are still pursuing our action plan to cut fixed costs.”

DPCA will now close its original assembly plant, Wuhan 1, and redevelop the site in a commercial partnership with the local government, according to the plans. The factory’s tooling and production will be transferred to the Wuhan 3 facility.

Headcount across DPCA will fall from 8,000 to 5,500 by the end of 2019 and to 4,000 within another three years, as it also sells off its idling Wuhan 2 facility, according to the document – which noted ongoing discussions with unidentified potential buyers.

Underperforming vehicles will be dropped as the Peugeot and Citroen lineups are streamlined around more profitable models, mirroring the European turnaround strategy now powering record margins in PSA’s home markets.

HURDLES

The carmakers’ dealings have often been fraught, and PSA executives including Tavares have voiced frustration with DPCA’s management. The French group’s shares briefly spiked on an Aug. 7 report that Dongfeng was preparing to divest its PSA stake, acquired in a 2014 bailout.

Questioned by analysts about China operations, Tavares pledged during PSA’s July 24 earnings call to “accelerate variable cost reduction, reduce fixed cost” and boost pricing.

“Our partner is in the same mindset,” he said of Dongfeng. “They also want to accelerate.”

The restructuring faces hurdles, not least the challenge of finding a Wuhan 2 buyer amid mounting uncertainty – although Chinese government restrictions on greenfield sites may help.

Over the past 18 months, Dongfeng’s Chairman Zhu tried repeatedly to persuade Honda (7267.T) or Nissan (7201.T) to take over one of the DPCA plants, reported on Aug 1.

Warren Buffett’s charity lunch postponed after cryptocurrency…

NEW YORK/HONG KONG ( ) – Chinese cryptocurrency entrepreneur Justin Sun postponed his $4.57 million charity lunch with Warren Buffett after falling ill with kidney stones, according to a statement from a foundation he backs.

Sun had been scheduled to dine with Buffett on July 25 at the Michelin-starred Quince restaurant in San Francisco after he won an auction to benefit Glide, a charity in the city.

Sun’s Tron Foundation said all parties have agreed to reschedule the lunch. Buffett’s assistant did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Buffett, the billionaire chairman of Berkshire Hathaway Inc (BRKa.N), has long been a skeptic of cryptocurrency.

He once called bitcoin “probably rat poison squared,” and at Berkshire’s annual meeting in May likened wagering on bitcoin to betting on zero or double-zero on a Las Vegasroulette wheel.

Sun had said that he hoped dining with Buffett would “bridge the gap between institutional and traditional investors and the realm of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology.” Buffett has raised about $34.2 million for Glide, a charity that serves the poor, homeless and those battling substance abuse, in 20 annual auctions since 2000. Glide said on Tuesday it has received Sun’s entire donation.

Sun on Tuesday denied a Chinese media report suggesting he engaged in improper activities in China.

He wrote on his Weibo social media account that rumors circulating online about illegal fundraising and about money laundering were untrue, and that Singapore-based Tron complied with local laws there.

Later on Wednesday, he said a report by Chinese financial magazine Caixin, stating he had been barred from 上海夜生活网foreign travel by Chinese authorities, was “completely false”.

Tron launched its TRX token in 2017, raising about $70 million in an initial coin offering, and acquired San Francisco-based BitTorrent for $120 million last year. It has said its goal is to establish a decentralized internet.

Tron’s cryptocurrency was down 11.2% on Tuesday afternoon, according to the website CoinMarketCap.com, giving it a value of about $1.68 billion.

Unilever second-quarter sales slip as wet weather hits Europe

( ) – Consumer goods giant Unilever Plc (ULVR.L) UNc.AS reported slightly weaker-than-expected quarterly underlying sales growth on Thursday, hit by wet weather in Europe and moderating growth in India, but kep上海夜生活网t its full-year sales target intact.

The company said it continues to expect full-year underlying sales growth to be in the lower half of its multi-year 3% to 5% target range and operating margin to reach 20% in 2020.

Unilever’s shares were down 1.1% in morning trade, compared to the broader FTSE 100 index .FTSE, which was flat.

The maker of Dove soap and Ben & Jerry’s ice cream said underlying sales rose 3.5% in the second quarter, but that missed analysts’ average forecasts for a 3.7% rise, according to a company-supplied consensus.

Wet weather in Europe dampened ice-cream sales following two straight seasons of hot summers, while growth in India slowed again as a late monsoon season and lower food inflation weakened rural demand.

“It seems a bit ironic with (Europe) being at super record temperatures right now, but in the quarter we are reporting, it was quite negative,” Unilever’s chief financial officer said on an earnings call with media.

Average rainfall across 12 European cities was three times higher in April and May than the prior year, while average hours of sunshine were down between 9% and 25% in the same two months, a Jefferies analysis showed.

Ice cream makes up 13% of Unilever’s group sales and about 20% of its European sales annually. In the second quarter that rises to 30% or about 1 billion pounds ($1.25 billion) in sales, Jefferies analyst Martin Deboo said in a pre-earnings note.

Growth mainly came from emerging markets, where the company continued to win volume share in places like Indonesia and the Philippines, even though sales in India decelerated to 7% in the second quarter from 9% in the previous three months.

Underlying sales in emerging markets rose 7.4% in the quarter, while they fell 1.6% in developed markets. Emerging markets contribute 60% to Unilever’s overall sales.

Turnover inched lower to 13.7 billion euros ($15.25 billion).

“Unilever themselves describe their markets as mixed, and most investors will look at these numbers as something of a curate’s egg,” said Steve Clayton, manager of the HL Select funds, which holds a position in Unilever.

Big ax falls as Deutsche Bank to lay off 18,000 in $8.3 billion…

FRANKFURT/SYDNEY/HONG KONG/NEW YORK ( ) – Deutsche Bank laid off staff from Sydney to New York on Monday as it began to slash 18,000 jobs in a 7.4 billion euro ($8.3 billion) “reinvention” that will lead to yet another annual loss, a plan that knocked its already battered shares.

Germany’s largest lender said on Sunday it will scrap its global equities unit and cut some fixed-income operations in a retreat from a long-held ambition to make its struggling investment bank, with 38,000 staff, a force on Wall Street. Deutsche Bank has almost 91,500 staff around the world.

(GRAPHIC: Deutsche Bank in numbers – tmsnrt.rs/2Jow9hq )

Its shares erased early gains and closed down 5.4% in Frankfurt after its finance chief flagged “significant uncertainty” over breaking even in 2020. Its bonds also fell. U.S.-listed shares dropped 6.1%.

Some analysts were skeptical that the bank could grow future earnings quickly enough to reach a new target to achieve a return on tangible equity of 8% by 2022, compared with a negative return last year.

“The question of where the real earnings power will come from for Deutsche Bank going forward has not been answered,” said David Hendler, an independent analyst at New York-based Viola Risk Advisors. “It’s doubtful whether they will be able to build a better bank in just three years.”

Ratings agency Fitch said that the bank’s future credit rating will depend on how successfully it executes the plan. Fitch downgraded the bank to “BBB” status, the lowest investment-grade status, just last month.

“The restructuring measures involve large staff cuts and significant leadership changes, which could disrupt the aim to improve core earnings,” it said in a note published Monday.

Rating agency Moody’s said there were “significant challenges” to executing the plan swiftly, adding it would keep its negative outlook.

“It’s a risky maneuver, but if it succeeds, it has the potential to bring the bank back on course,” said a person close to one of the top 10 shareholders.

Related CoverageDeutsche Bank careers end in an envelope, a hug and a cab rideFactbox: Deutsche Bank staff react to 18,000 global job cutsSee more stories

JP Morgan analysts called the plan “bold and for the first time not half-baked” but questioned the credibility of execution, revenue growth and employee motivation.

The bank said on Sunday that it would not need to raise capital to initiate the cuts, which will result in it making a loss of 2.8 billion euros in the second quarter. It will not pay a dividend either this year or next.

Hundreds of employees at the bank’s Wall Street office were summoned to the building’s cafeteria on Monday morning to learn their fates, sources within the bank told . During one-to-one meetings with management and human resources, they were told they were being laid off and informed of their severance terms, the sources said.

Deutsche Bank had been one of the few European banks to maintain a significant presence in the United States after the 2007-2009 financial cri上海夜生活sis. However, it has struggled to compete with U.S. rivals, hampered by regulatory investigations and litigation.

REINVENTING THE BANK

The United States had been seen as a likely focus of the cuts although the bank maintained it wants to keep a significant presence, in part to service European corporate clients doing business in the country. However, some shareholders have pushed for a full U.S. retreat.

Deutsche Bank said it remained committed to the United States, its second-biggest market.

“We will retain a significant presence here and remain a close partner to our U.S. clients and to international institutions that want to access the U.S. market,” it said in a statement.

In London, where hundreds of job cuts were expected, Chief Executive Officer Christian Sewing said he was “reinventing” the bank, which is expected to post a loss this year. That would put it in the red for four of the past five years after a series of damaging setbacks.

Founded in 1870, Deutsche Bank has long been a major source of finance and advice for German companies seeking to expand abroad or raise money through the bond or equity markets.

Big cuts to its investment bank reverse a decades-long expansion that began with its purchase of Morgan Grenfell in London in 1989 and continued a decade later with a takeover of Bankers Trust in the United States.

The investment bank generated about one-half of Deutsche Bank’s revenues but is also volatile. CEO Sewing, who flagged the restructuring in May after a failed merger attempt with Commerzbank, wants to focus on more stable sources of revenue.

“We are creating a bank that will be more profitable, leaner, more innovative and more resilient,” Sewing wrote in a note to staff on Sunday.

As part of the overhaul, Deutsche Bank will set up a so-called “bad bank” to wind down unwanted assets, with 74 billion euros ($83 billion) of risk-weighted assets.

‘PRETTY GLOOMY’

Deutsche Bank did not give details on the job cuts, but said they would be spread around the globe, including in Germany.

In Sydney, Hong Kong and elsewhere in the Asia-Pacific region, where Deutsche Bank used to rank among the top 10 in league tables for equity capital market (ECM) deals, several bankers said entire teams in sales and trading were going.

Deutsche Bank’s Asia-Pacific head of ECM, Jason Cox, left, and ECM teams were disbanded in Japan, Australia and most of Asia, people with direct knowledge of matter said, adding that only a few syndicate bankers, including those working on current deals, will remain.

Deutsche Bank had slipped in recent years in Asia, hitting 17th last year and 18th in 2019, Refinitiv data showed. So far this year, it ranks 8th regionally for merger-and-acquisition activity.

“The new investment bank will be smaller but more resilient, with a focus on our financing, capital markets, advisory services and sales and trading businesses,” Asia-Pacific CEO Werner Steinmueller said in a staff memo.

One laid-off equities trader in Hong Kong said the mood was “pretty gloomy” as people were called into meetings. “They give you this packet and you are out of the building,” he said.

Several workers left offices holding envelopes with the bank’s logo. Three employees took a picture of themselves beside a Deutsche Bank sign outside, hugged and then hailed a taxi.

“If you have a job for me, please let me know. But do not ask questions,” said one Deutsche employee.

One senior banker, still with a job, questioned how well the slimmed-down franchise in Asia would compete.

“Will clients stick with us, or is the game over?”

LG Electronics, regulators oppose Qualcomm’s effort to put…

( ) – Smartphone maker LG Electronics Inc on Tuesday opposed Qualcomm Inc’s efforts to put a sweeping U.S. antitrust decision against the chip supplier on hold as it pursues an appeal.

The Korean company said that it is negotiating chip supply and patent license agreements with Qualcomm and could be forced into signing another unfair deal unless a federal judge’s protections remain in place.

The filing in federal court in San Jose, California, came shortly after the U.S. Federal Trade Commissi上海夜生活论坛on also opposed Qualcomm’s efforts, saying that it was in the public interest to let the antitrust ruling stand because an appeal could take years.

Both filings stem from a May 21 decision by U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh that would drastically alter the business model of Qualcomm, which supplies modem chips to connect phones to mobile data networks but makes most of its profit through licensing patents.

Among other things, Koh’s decision would require Qualcomm to license its patents to rival chip makers instead of phone makers, which could potentially slice its patent royalties from several dollars per phone to pennies.

Qualcomm on May 28 asked Koh to set aside her decision while it pursues an appeal. The company said that Koh’s decision would entail “radically restructuring its business relationships” in ways that would be impossible to reverse if it wins an appeal.

It also argued that Koh’s ruling raised “serious legal questions” because, among other things, Koh blocked market evidence showing that Apple Inc dropped Qualcomm in favor of rival chip supplier Intel Corp.

In a court filing on Tuesday, JongSang Lee, LG Electronics’ general counsel, said that the phone maker relies on Qualcomm for modem chips and is in the midst of negotiating a new agreement, including over 5G chips for the newest generation of mobile networks in Korea.

Lee wrote that Qualcomm has continued to pressure LG Electronics to sign a patent license in order to keep its access to Qualcomm chips, which it relies on for its phones. LG Electronics’ agreement with Qualcomm runs out on June 30, and the phone maker may have “no option but to conclude license and chipset supply agreements once again on Qualcomm’s terms, since LGE must rely on Qualcomm’s modem chips,” Lee wrote.

Koh’s decision “prohibits Qualcomm’s long-standing ‘no license no chip’ position, which Qualcomm has continuously raised during its license negotiations with LGE,” Lee wrote. “Without this order, LGE will continue to face Qualcomm’s anticompetitive stance during currently ongoing negotiations.”

The FTC similarly argued that Koh’s ruling should stay in place while Qualcomm appeals, saying that a prompt enforcement of the Court’s order is in the public interest.

“The appellate process could easily extend through the initial rollout of 5G technology … and a stay would allow Qualcomm time to use anticompetitive practices to entrench its monopoly power in modem-chip markets during this critical period,” the FTC wrote in its filing.

The App Association, a group that represents more than 5,000 app developers and device makers and is backed by sponsor Apple, also said it planned to oppose Qualcomm’s request, saying it would hurt smaller device makers.

“Allowing Qualcomm to continue abusing its (patents) and its wireless chipset monopoly any longer will irreparably harm opportunities for small businesses in the app and internet of things marketplace and would encourage further abusive behavior in (patent) licensing widely,” said App Association President Morgan Reed.

In April, Apple signed a six-year patent license agreement with Qualcomm and a multi-year chip supply deal. As part of the deal, Apple dropped all litigation against Qualcomm, and the company did not return a comment request asking if it would also oppose Qualcomm’s efforts to pause the antitrust ruling.

Qualcomm has signaled its intention to file an appeal but has not yet filed one or fully revealed its legal arguments. Tuesday’s filing by the FTC only concerns whether the ruling’s provisions will be put on hold temporarily as any appeal plays out.

Exclusive: Zambian government has no plans to seize First Quantum -…

LUSAKA/LONDON/TORONTO ( ) – Zambia has no plans to seize the assets of Quantum Minerals Ltd and the copper producer intends to stay in the country despite the government’s move to wrest control of a rival miner, government and industry sources told .

Canadian-listed First Quantum has looked on nervously as the Zambian government appointed a provisional liquidator to run Vedanta’s Konkola Copper Mines (KCM), claiming KCM has breached the terms of its license.

The move has unnerved international miners concerned about rising resource nationalism in Zambia and neighboring countries.

First Quantum, scarred by having its operations in Democratic Republic of Congo seized in 2010, is embroiled in a dispute with the Zambian government after being handed a $5.8 billion bill last year for unpaid import duties.

“The government will not touch First Quantum,” one source close to the government said. “Vedanta is very different from First Quantum.”

Among the international miners, First Quantum has the most to lose in Zambia, which accounts for 83% of production from the company’s operating assets this year, excluding a new project in Panama.

But the company also has bargaining power as the most profitable miner in Zambia and the biggest tax payer.

In 2018, it said it paid more than $533 million in taxes to the Zambian government, including royalties, income and corporate tax.

Two sources close to the company, who requested anonymity because of the sensitivity of negotiations, said First Quantum would stay, but would freeze investment and might put operations on hold.

“They’ll not go. They are here for the long term,” one of the sources said.

Still, the company cannot mine at a loss, and, if necessary, would suspend production and cut jobs, shrinking the tax revenues Zambia desperately needs as its debts mount, one source said.

A First Quantum spokesman declined requests for comment.

No one from the Zambian government was immediately available for fresh comment.

The Zambian government has increased taxes and said it will switch to a non-refundable sales tax, from a refundable value-added tax.

First Quantum has said the tax changes will add about 10 cents per pound of copper in 2019 to its costs and between 15 cents to 18 cents per pound in following years.

At the time of its first quarter results in April, First Quantum CEO Philip Pascall said the company would be “very cautious” about capital expenditure in Zambia.

Pascall, who attended boarding school in Zimbabwe, has weathered previous changes in the Zambian tax regime and the sources say he will do so again.

“That’s the smart thing to do to wait for relations to be less toxic,” another of the sources said.

So far First Quantum has retreated from threats to shut in production in favor of negotiations.

First Quantum’s open-pit Zambian operations, Kansa上海夜生活网nshi and Sentinel, are projected to produce 235,000 tonnes and 250,000 tonnes of copper annually, respectively. The company expects an all-in sustaining cost of $1.70-$1.85 per pound, excluding the planned Zambian sales tax.

This is profitable even with copper prices currently around $2.65 per pound or roughly $5,900 per tonne.

‘CASH COW’

Analysts say First Quantum is undervalued. Its shares have fallen 35% from a peak in April, nearly double the loss on the benchmark Solative Global Copper Mines index.

“The shares have fallen because of a total misunderstanding of the situation,” said Charl Malan, an analyst at VanEck Global Investors, one of the company’s top 10 shareholders.

“First Quantum is not going to lose its assets. It is profitable, it is paying salaries and paying taxes… First Quantum won’t sell the Zambia assets. Zambia is their cash cow.”

The sources and the industry as a whole, however, acknowledge Zambia is high-risk as it grapples with mounting debts and as politicians are already positioning ahead of elections scheduled for 2021.

Vedanta has said its KCM unit is “largely unprofitable”, although it has paid taxes through its payroll and says it has invested in the business.

Vedanta Resources, part-owner of the Mumbai-listed Vedanta group of companies, has also said it will vigorously defend itself and has threatened international arbitration in response to the Zambian government’s intervention in KCM.

Mining Minister Richard Musukwa has said the Vedanta case is “a signal to other mining companies not complying with the law to put their houses in order.” He has not explicitly said any miners are safe from government intervention.