Merger Is Set To Create World’s No. 1 Ad Company (NYT)
After decades of buying up boutique firms, the advertising conglomerates Omnicom Group and Publicis Groupe finally set their sights on one another. The two announced a merger on Sunday that would create the world’s biggest family of agencies, with a stock market value of $35.1 billion and more than 130,000 employees.
Moelis, Rothschild Take Lead on Omnicom-Publicis Merger (Bloomberg)
For bankers, the merger of Publicis Groupe SA (PUB) and Omnicom Group Inc. (OMC) was notable for what it didn’t involve: the participation of a single large investment bank. Instead, New York-based boutique Moelis & Co. and Rothschild, the storied Paris-based merger adviser, worked with Omnicom and Publicis, respectively, shutting out their bigger competitors. The deal, which will create a globe-spanning advertising company with a market capitalization of more than $30 billion, will also give both firms a significant jump up the league tables for merger advice. ... “The reason we didn’t add more advisers is because we didn’t need them at the end of the day,” Omnicom Chief Executive Officer John Wren said at a press conference in Paris yesterday. “Maurice and I settled many of the issues,” he said, referring to Publicis CEO Maurice Levy.
Federal Reserve 'Doves' Beat 'Hawks' in Economic Prognosticating (WSJ)
The Wall Street Journal examined more than 700 predictions made between 2009 and 2012 in speeches and congressional testimony by 14 Fed policy makers—and scored the predictions on growth, jobs and inflation. The most accurate forecasts overall came from Ms. Yellen, now the Fed's vice chair. She was joined in the high scores by other Fed "doves," policy makers who wanted aggressively easy money policies to confront a weak U.S. economy and low inflation. Collectively, they supported Fed Chairmen Ben Bernanke's strategy to pump money into the U.S. economy. The least accurate forecasts came from central bank "hawks," those who feared Fed policies would trigger rising inflation.
Barclays to give capital plans update on Tuesday (Reuters)
Barclays confirmed it will set out how it plans to meet tougher UK rules on capital on Tuesday, responding to media reports it is considering selling new shares. Barclays said on Monday it had been in talks with Britain's financial regulator and would update the market alongside its half-year results. The bank is expected either to sell bonds that are wiped out if it hits trouble, known as CoCos, or to raise equity or a combination of both.
'Fart Spray,' Deer Repellant Draw Hazmat Team To Camp Wo-Me-To (Fallston Patch)
More than a dozen campers from Camp Wo-Me-To in Jarrettsville were decontaminated and six taken to a local hospital for treatment after deer repellent and fart spray caused them physical irritation. The Harford County Hazardous Materials team was called to the Christian-run camp near Rocks State Park after a 9-1-1 call around 10 p.m. Wednesday, according to a release from Harford County Department of Emergency Services. ... The Hazmat team determined two products—a deer spray and a product labeled "Liquid Ass"—were sprayed in two different cabins on Camp Wo-Me-To grounds, according to the release.
Yield Seekers Get Their Second Wind From Fed (WSJ)
As investors search for ways to earn more income from their portfolios while interest rates are still historically low, there has been a rebound in high-income-generating stocks such as utilities, real-estate investment trusts and energy-focused companies known as master limited partnerships, or MLPs. These stocks pay out a high level of dividends or other income relative to their share prices. "Interest-rate-sensitive sectors have definitely come off their lows and recovered," said Margie Patel, who oversees more than $1.5 billion as a senior portfolio manager at Wells Capital Management. "There's still a huge fundamental demand for income, and that's what stepped in when these companies got too cheap."
What next for the 'Wall Street Refiners' as JPM exits physical commodities? (Reuters)
As JPMorgan Chase & Co prepares to exit physical commodities trading, the spotlight is turning to the future of the two banks that have dominated Wall Street's involvement in the natural resources supply chain for 30 years. Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley two decades ago became known as the 'Wall Street Refiners' for their mastery of both financial and physical commodities. But since 2012 Morgan Stanley has looked at selling its commodity arm and Goldman has made moves to scale back its physical operations.
Voting Rule Change Is Viewed as Crucial to Dell Founder’s Takeover Bid (DealBook)
According to recent tallies, of the roughly 1.1 billion shares that have been cast so far, about 579 million have been cast in favor, while 563 million have been voted against the deal, people briefed on the matter said. That is not enough to win at the moment, however. According to the current rules set by Dell’s board, a majority of the company’s 1.476 billion shares eligible to be voted must be cast in favor of the deal; that number excludes the 16 percent stake that Mr. Dell holds. So the more than 334 million shares that have not voted yet are treated as no votes.
Treasury pledges extra £2m for Barclays probe (FT)
The UK Treasury is expected to pledge special “blockbuster” funding to the Serious Fraud Office to back its investigation into Barclays’ emergency fundraising five years ago, in a sign of the agency’s escalating probe into the bank. ... The agency announced in August 2012 that it had “opened an investigation into certain commercial arrangements between Barclays Bank and Qatar Holding in 2008”.
Man accused of drunk boating ‘devastated’ after bride-to-be and best man died in Hudson River crash (NYP)
The banker who killed a bride-to-be and her fiancé’s best man in a grisly boat crash has a history of reckless partying — and is shaking with guilt over his role in the tragic accident, friends told The Post yesterday. A pal of JPMorgan Chase employee Jojo John said the gregarious party boy — who has a 2010 drug-possession conviction — enjoyed speeding around local waterways with friends after a few drinks.
P&G chief seizes opportunity in era of three-day stubble (FT)
Men who are more willing to shave their bodies than their faces are looming as an opportunity for AG Lafley, Procter & Gamble’s newly-returned chief executive, as he seeks to revive the struggling business.
Robber Steals $53M in Jewels at Cannes Hotel (ABC)
The gunman walked into the luxury Carlton Intercontinental Hotel at around noon and headed for "La Cote," a room housing a temporary exhibit of jewelry by the prestigious Leviev diamond house, owned by the London-based Russian Israeli billionaire Lev Leviev, that had been due to run until the end of August. "The thief in his mid-40s entered the room of the exhibition, pulled a Colt .45 out at the employees, stuffed a bag with gems and walked out of the hotel," a Cannes police officer, speaking on condition of anonymity, told ABC News. "We do not know yet if the thief had accomplices, but we are investigating everything. It's a full scale investigation."