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Future Legislation May Allow Sovereign Wealth Funds to Invest in Canadian Financial Institutions

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In 2007, Canadian banks were better capitalized than their southern neighbors and in Canada subject to tighter regulation and supervision. Canadian banks did not need taxpayer bailout capital, like the United States or England. There has been a major push especially from the Canadian life insurance sector to allow sovereign wealth funds both foreign and domestic to be shareholders of their companies. The government of Canada plans to introduce legislation to allow foreign and domestic sovereign wealth funds to invest in Canadian financial institutions.

This legislation could be introduced as early as the 2012-2013 fiscal year. This would provide Canadian banks and insurance companies additional avenues to raise capital amid the new Basel banking rules. This would be a major game changer for non-Canadian sovereign wealth funds, since many want exposure to the financial sector in stable Occidental nations with large natural resources.[ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

GIC Sells Arizona Biltmore to Blackstone

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Blackstone Real Estate Advisors, part of the Blackstone Group, acquired the 740-room Arizona Biltmore hotel, located in Phoenix, for US$ 403.4 million. The deal closed on April 20, 2018.[ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Mubadala Acquires Stake in Growing Hedge Fund Phoenician Capital

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Mubadala Investment Company, through its unit Mubadala Capital, purchased a minority stake Phoenician Capital, LLC. Although terms and size of the deal were not disclosed, the agreement grants Mubadala Capital rights to invest in a fund managed by the New York-based firm, which generated respective returns of 40.8% and 33.0% in 2016 and 2017, against benchmarks of 12.0% and 21.8% for the S&P 500. The hedge fund runs the Phoenician Offshore Fund Ltd.

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Large Asset Managers Continue to Move Operations Out of California

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In the 2010s, Fisher Investments, an investment firm run by Ken Fisher, moved a large number of employees from the Woodside and San Mateo campuses to a town called Camas in Washington, near Portland. Vanguard has a large operational presence in Arizona, while Charles Schwab Corporation has expanded its technology operations and client services in places like Denver, Dallas, Austin and Phoenix. Dimensional Fund Advisors moved its headquarters in 2008 from Santa Monica, California to Austin.

While asset managers reap profits and try to lower employee head count costs, looking to fly-over country seems appealing.

The Pacific Investment Management Company (PIMCO), part of the Allianz family, selected Austin, Texas as its new office to hire more client services and technology talent. The PIMCO Austin office will open later in 2018. PIMCO is headquartered in Newport Beach, California, with an office in New York City.

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