Experimental feature

Listen to this article

00:00
00:00
Experimental feature
or

Sign up to receive FirstFT by email here

Saudi Arabia’s first bond sale has been so successful and generated so much interest from Asian investors that the kingdom is considering following up with a full pipeline of bonds after the $15bn auction that could come as soon as October.

The debt issuance could be the largest emerging market issuance in history and comes as ultra-low interest rates in mature economies has pushed investment into developing countries at a record pace.

One banker said: “We are seeing massive, massive demand . . . Asian banks are throwing around billion-dollar numbers.”

Saudi leaders are expected to discuss their plans at next week’s G20 meeting in China. (FT)

In the news

Singapore sees 26 more Zika cases Asia’s largest cluster of Zika virus outbreaks is still growing. Authorities in Singapore say they have identified 26 new cases of locally transmitted Zika virus, bringing the total there to 82. (FT)

Trump in Mexico Donald Trump visited Mexico City on Wednesday for talks with President Enrique Peña Nieto hours before making a speech in the US detailing immigration policy plans. The candidate faces accusations of backpedalling on what has been a core tenet of his campaign — the forced deportation of more than 11m undocumented migrants — but insists he will bring home jobs from south of the border, scrap a trade partnership and build a border wall. (FT)

Isis propaganda chief killed The spokesman and head of external operations for Isis, Abu Muhammad al-Adnani, has been killed in Syria, the group’s media outlet said on Tuesday. Adnani’s demise, if confirmed, would be the biggest single setback to the leadership of Isis since the group began its blitzkrieg across the Middle East, redrawing a century-old map in its wake. The organisation’s leader is the elusive Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, a cleric and Islamic scholar. Adnani was his chief of operations, both inside Isis and abroad. (FT, New Yorker)

Three men arrested over alleged Malaysia terror plot Police in Malaysia have arrested three suspected Isis militants who were allegedly planning to attack a Hindu temple on the eve of the country’s independence day celebrations. (FT)

Michael Dell sees long-term gains in EMC deal Some see Dell’s acquisition of EMC, to be closed next Wednesday, as “two garbage trucks colliding”. Michael Dell does not see it that way, telling the FT: “It’s pretty different than that.” He sees debts and short-term losses as manageable for the combined entity. (FT)

Biogen predicts preventive drug for Alzheimer’s disease In the future, doctors could treat Alzheimer’s disease in the way that potential ill effects of high cholesterol are managed even in people without a cardiovascular disease. That’s what a senior scientist for Biogen, the large US biotech group, told reporters this week. (FT)

It’s a big day for

Michel Temer Dilma Rousseff’s replacement, former vice-president Michel Temer, will not have long to savour the moment of taking over as Brazil’s leader after the impeachment process concluded on Wednesday. If he had thought the impeachment was challenging, his next task promises to be even more formidable — how to push through a series of unpopular reforms and end one of the world’s deepest recessions. (FT)

Visits to the US and Canada London mayor Sadiq Khan will visit the two North American countries and meet both Bill and Hillary Clinton, on his first foreign in office. He’ll start a five-day tour in Montreal, where he’s been invited to address a global meeting by Justin Trudeau, the Canadian prime minister. (FT)

Food for thought

Capitalism and democracy: the strain is showing If the legitimacy of our democratic political systems is to be maintained, economic policy must be orientated towards promoting the interests of the many not the few, writes Martin Wolf. In the first place would be the citizenry, to whom the politicians are accountable. “If we fail to do this, the basis of our political order seems likely to founder. That would be good for no one. The marriage of liberal democracy with capitalism needs some nurturing. It must not be taken for granted.” (FT)

Risks of relying on robots for recruitment Robots are not just taking people’s jobs away, they are beginning to hand them out, too, says Sarah O’Connor. Go to any recruitment industry event and you will find the air is thick with terms like “machine learning”, “big data” and “predictive analytics”. The argument for using these tools is simple: they can sift through candidates more efficiently than humans and do it more fairly. This is a seductive idea but it is also dangerous. Any machine learning algorithm is only as good as the training data from which it learns. (FT)

Starbucks quietly aims for more airport bar action Starbucks might be the go-to destination for weary travellers seeking a certain kind of beverage, but now the US-based coffee chain has its sights set on attracting consumers seeking a harder variety of refreshment. Starbucks is about to add an “Evenings” menu of alcoholic beverages and additional food options. (Forbes)

Behind SoftBank’s blockbuster bid for ARM SoftBank’s massive, $31.8bn, purchase of UK chip designer Arm was a decade-long courtship for Masayoshi Son, who made it real thanks to one high-powered dinner back in June. (NAR)

China’s gift crackdown hits Swiss watches Ever since China’s government implemented a crackdown on “gift giving” among government officials, Swiss watch exports have been feeling the negative fallout. The slump is a reverse from the 100 per cent rise in the value of exports over the course of 2010 and 2011. (FT Alphaville)

Video of the day

Brazil looks to future after impeachment In the wake of Dilma Rousseff’s impeachment, the FT talks to Brazilians about the challenges that lie ahead for Latin America’s biggest economy. (FT)

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2017. All rights reserved.
myFT

Follow the topics mentioned in this article