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Media Navel Gaze: October 3, 2016

Mark Kollar  Follow

If you take tongue-in-cheek The New Yorker cover seriously, Donald Trump won Miss Congeniality at the First Face Off last week, which is probably the best you could say according to most pundits. The debates provided non-stop commentary with the Miss Universe brouhaha unnecessarily bleeding into the weekend because of a map Twitter rant by Trump late one night/early one morning. That of course has been capped by a report by The New York Times that he claimed a more than $900-million-loss in 1995 tax records that meant he could avoid paying taxes for some 18 years! 

Elsewhere, and yes, there was elsewhere:

  • Stocks ended the third quarter 3.3 percent higher (measured by the S&P 500) amid some signs of a stronger economy and slight rebound in some bank stocks and still no Fed action (but stay tuned);
  • Deal news picked up with reports that a CBS/Viacom merger may be in the works, at least the talks have started;
  • Qualcomm wants to buy NXP Semiconductors in a more than $30 billion deal and CBOE wants to acquire Bats Global Markets for $3.2 billion to create a huge exchange;
  • Salesforce is trying to block the Microsoft/LinkedIn merger on antitrust claims;
  • Och-Ziff is paying over $400 million to settled charges over bribes in Africa;
  • Leaders from around the world of all political stripes met to mourn the death of peacemaker Shimon Peres
  • The Rosetta spacecraft ended a 12-year odyssey and landed on a comet far, far away; and
  • RIP Blackberry.

LatAm Gaze:

  • Sunday marked a historic day in Colombia as citizens voted on whether to approve the peace treaty signed between the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) intended to end over five decades of armed conflict.
  • Mexico this week raised its key lending rate by 50 basis points to 4.75 percent in an effort to strengthen the Mexican Peso, which has faced political headwinds related to, among other factors, the outcome of the U.S. presidential election.
  • In Brazil, Itaú acquired the remaining 40 percent stake of Banco Itaú BMG Consignado, a joint venture with Banco BMG focused on payday loans, for R$1.28 billion (USD$392 million). Separately, Brazil is also going through initial stages of its municipal elections.
  • Argentine President Mauricio Macri will host newly-appointed Brazilian President Michel Temer this week to discuss, among other items, opportunities for improved economic collaboration amongst Mercosur members.
  • In Chile, President Michelle Bachelet announced the initial framework of the country’s 2017 budget, including a projected 2.7 percent increase in public expenses, the lowest in 14 years. The forecast was in line with market expectations as Chile’s government looks to suppress costs in light of public scrutiny for an under-achieving economy. 
  • End of Week Market Updates
    • Merval (Argentina):   +  1.42%
    • Bovespa (Brazil):       -   0.56%
    • IPSA (Chile):             +  1.92%
    • IGBC (Colombia):       -   0.91% 
    • IPC (Mexico):             -   1.11%
    • BVL (Perú):                -   0.18% 

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