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Breakingviews - Biden VP will be just one possible 2024 candidate

Joe Biden’s vice presidential pick will face stiff competition to succeed him. The Democratic nominee chose U.S. Senator Kamala Harris of California as his running mate. His age gives the role more standing. But other White House wannabes may also land senior government jobs if Biden wins in November against President Donald Trump.

Breakingviews - Breakdown: The scramble for a Covid-19 vaccine

Pharmaceutical groups such as AstraZeneca and Pfizer may soon get regulators’ blessing for new coronavirus inoculations. A successful vaccine could ease a crisis that the Congressional Budget Office estimates will cost the United States alone some $8 trillion. Yet doubts over efficacy will linger, and manufacturing challenges mean poorer countries may have to wait. The reward for drugmakers is equally uncertain.

Breakingviews - The Exchange: Stephanie Kelton

As budget deficits swell, one of the highest profile advocates of Modern Monetary Theory joins Swaha Pattanaik to discuss her approach to public finances, U.S. presidential hopeful Joe Biden’s economic agenda, how her thinking evolved, and her experience of academic gatekeeping.

Breakingviews - SoftBank lives the high life on yard sales

SoftBank boss Masayoshi Son’s giant yard sale is buying him time to relax. The $129 billion group returned to profit in the last quarter following a dismal three months in the red, buoyed by the sale of T-Mobile shares and other investment gains. Asset sales fuelled a jumbo share buyback plan that narrowed a wide conglomerate discount, and there are large exits to come from its Vision funds. They should carry Son over the current soft spot, provided equity mar

Breakingviews - Does $20 trillion buy much inflation?

It seems to take a lot of money to generate even a little bit of inflation. Around $20 trillion worth of global stimulus measures have been unveiled so far this year on Bank of America’s calculations. That’s more than a fifth of last year’s world economic output. Yet investors are not exactly quaking. 

Breakingviews - Hong Kong will be lucky to end up like Singapore

Hong Kong will be lucky to end up like Singapore, or even a second-tier Chinese city. Police arrested pro-democracy media mogul Jimmy Lai for “foreign collusion” on Monday. Meanwhile, Chief Executive Carrie Lam’s administration has postponed elections and is purging the education system of dissidents. Businesses might have hoped Hong Kong would settle into a model resembling Singapore, where politics are authoritarian and commercial rule of law is upheld. That

Breakingviews - Aramco’s dividend defences are triple-locked

Saudi Aramco has deployed its triple-bottomed dividend defences sooner than expected. The Saudi state energy giant is handing $18.75 billion to investors this quarter even though earnings plunged to little more than a third of that amount. It’s a contrast with rivals BP and Royal Dutch Shell, which both trimmed their payouts. But even if crude demand plunges again, the $1.8 trillion firm has multiple ways of ensuring rewards for shareholders.

Breakingviews - China bank failure fires quiet warning shot

Beijing will let Baoshang Bank go under in the first such insolvency since 2001 – a quiet warning shot fired at Chinese financial markets. The liquidation of the municipal lender, used as a piggy bank by an insurer, will raise borrowing costs for small peers and possibly push more of them to the brink. With the economy still wobbling, it’s a risky time to cleanse the system.

Breakingviews - Trump’s swipe at Tencent hits China’s softest spot

President Donald Trump has hit China in one of its softest spots: Tencent. The White House on Thursday said it will block “transactions” with the $687 billion tech colossus. That could cripple its payments-to-messaging app WeChat outside China and put a vast portfolio of overseas investments at risk. The ban could ultimately sting China harder than the campaign against telecoms-equipment maker Huawei.

About Breakingviews

Reuters Breakingviews is the world's leading source of agenda-setting financial insight. As the Reuters brand for financial commentary, we dissect the big business and economic stories as they break around the world every day. A global team of about 30 correspondents in New York, London, Hong Kong and other major cities provides expert analysis in real time. Sign up for a free trial of our full service at http://www.breakingviews.com/trial and follow us on Twitter @Breakingviews and at www.breakingviews.com. All opinions expressed are those of the authors.

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