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Germany Prepares Veto Power Over Foreign Investors: report

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According to the AFP, “The German economy ministry has prepared a draft law under which the government could block foreign investors that threatened “national security” or “public order,” a press report said Tuesday.

The plan targets hedge funds, state-controlled sovereign wealth funds and foreign groups, and would give the government a veto over the purchase of more than 25 percent of a German company, the daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung said.

Officials would also have four weeks to approve or reject a foreign investment project that was presented officially, the paper added in a report released in advance of its publication on Wednesday.

If German authorities discovered that a foreign investor had acquired more than 25 percent of a company without advising its intentions, a three-month period would allow officials to evaluate and possibly annul the transaction.

The financial power of speculative hedge funds, known in Germany as “crickets” for their voracious appetite, but especially that of state-backed funds based in China, Russia and oil-rich Gulf states have sparked concern within the broad coalition government of Chancellor Angela Merkel.”

Read more: AFP

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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