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From Bitcoin to Belize, Here Are Best and Worst Assets of 2017

It was a great year to hold bitcoin, but a bad time to have been invested in the Uzbek soum. As 2017 winds to a close, a look at the winners and losers around the globe shows that, broadly speaking, the riskiest assets performed well, with bullish sentiment on display in stocks, emerging-market sovereigns and corporate debt. Securities generally seen as the safest and least volatile bets — think Japanese government bonds — trailed behind. There was perhaps no investing idea that attracted more attention in 2017 than cryptocurrencies, from Jamie…

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The Strange Case of the Look-Alike Credit Cards

First National Bank of Marin was a small Las Vegas lender with an image problem. Federal investigators accused it of issuing credit cards to strapped consumers, then piling on so many fees and obligations that some new clients couldn’t buy a sandwich without hitting their credit limit. But by 2006, it had settled the claims and was ready to expand. It changed its name to Source: Credit One Bank If that looks familiar, there’s a good reason. In 2008, credit-card titan Source: Capital One Financial Corp. And so began the improbable story of…

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Meredith to Buy Time Inc. With Koch Backing

Meredith Corp. agreed to acquire Time Inc. for $2.8 billion including debt, swallowing the once-mighty home of Fortune and Sports Illustrated after the internet age wreaked havoc on even the most prestigious magazine titles. The $18.50-a-share offer is an all-cash one, Meredith said in a statement Sunday. The deal gives Meredith, publisher of Better Homes & Gardens, a larger audience at a time when publishers need to get bigger to compete with Facebook and Google in advertising. The acquisition also gives the billionaire Read more about print media’s enduring appeal…

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Blockbuster Reforms May Take Back Seat as Modi Eyes Elections

India’s national sales tax might be the last big-ticket reform from Prime Minister Narendra Modi as he prepares for about a dozen of state polls and seeks re-election in 2019, government officials say. Modi is expected to conclude already-underway measures such as the privatization of state carrier easier to do business in India, reforming taxation and taking measures to pull banks out of their bad debt trap. Still, while global investors look favorably at Modi, his policies have not addressed the growing disenchantment among farmers and unemployed youth and senior…

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Germany Tightens the Screws on International Funds to Turkey

The German government is wielding its influence with international development institutions to restrict financing to Turkey over an escalating political dispute, people familiar with the matter said. Germany is actively working to cut funding to Turkey from the country’s state-owned European Investment Bank and the European Bank for European Union’s pre-accession funding for Turkey. That’s part of a broader break between Turkey and its traditional Western allies, including the U.S., which on Oct. 8 suspended visa services in the country. Germany is Turkey’s largest economic partner by far, accounting for…

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Singapore-Listed Noble Group Will Sell Its Oil Trading Business

Embattled commodity trader total net loss of $1.1 billion and $1.25 billion for the three months to September, and that lenders had agreed to a two-month extension of a waiver related to a revolving-credit facility. Noble Group, once Asia’s largest commodity trader, has been rushing to sell its oil business to pay back lenders in a struggle to survive. The shares have sunk 78 percent this year amid concerns that the company will default. Trading was halted on Friday at 38 Singapore cents, 2.6 percent down from the previous close, pending the…

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Airbus to Buy Majority Stake in Bombardier C Series Jet Program

Bombardier Inc.’s C Series jetliner program, breathing new life into a slow-selling plane and opening a new front in the battle with United Technologies Corp. After the transaction, which is expected to be completed in the second half of next year, the Canadian planemaker will own about 31 percent of the C Series partnership. The province of Quebec, which invested $1 billion in the C Series after the cost overruns and delays, will hold approximately 19 percent. A Canadian government official said the deal is expected to be approved after…

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No U.S. Bailout for Puerto Rican Debt, Trumps Budget Chief Says

President Donald Trump’s budget chief said not to take literally the president’s suggestion that Puerto Rico’s debt would be “wiped out,” even as the territory’s bonds plunged to a record low on Wednesday: 32 cents on the dollar. "I think what you heard the president say is that Puerto Rico is going to have to figure out a way to solve its debt problem,” Mick Mulvaney, director of the White House budget office, said in an interview Wednesday. Puerto Rico, ravaged by Hurricane Maria on Sept. 20, is dealing with…

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