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Hands Off Brazil’s Sovereign Fund for 2013 Possible Shortfall

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Contending with a probable ratings downgrade derived from a narrowing 12-month primary budget surplus, Brazilian public officials are seeking new options. Brazil may not be able to reach the year-end budget savings target of 2.3% of gross domestic product – a lowered target from last year. Last week, the Banco Central do Brasil stated the 12-month public sector primary surplus slimmed to R$ 67.89 billion (US$ 29.14 billion) from R$ 74.1 billion.

This is important for Brazilian government bondholders because the primary surplus is used to pay down Brazil’s net public sector debt. Last year, the Fundo Soberano do Brasil (FSB), the sovereign wealth fund of Brazil, was used to cover the budget shortfall. R$ 12.5 billion was moved from the FSB to the National Treasury – some economists perceived it as a masking technique. On December 4, 2013, Brazilian Treasury Secretary Arno Augustin made it clear that the FSB will not be tapped to fund any possible shortfall in the meeting of the budget surplus target for 2013. Brazil’s sovereign wealth fund was intended for being a stabilization reserve for the budget and foreign exchange rates. In addition, the sovereign fund had the option to take strategic investments in Brazilian companies.

Funds and Ownership, KKR Partners with Shinhan Financial

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South Korean financial giant Shinhan Financial Group Co., Ltd. reached a preliminary agreement with KKR & Co. to form a series of global buyout funds that could raise up to 5 trillion KRW. KKR and Shinhan signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in Seoul in early October. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Norwegian Government Recommends SWF Remains at Central Bank

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There was speculation that Norway Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG) could be managed outside of Norges Bank. The Norwegian government shot down this idea and recommended Norway’s GPFG remain in Norges Bank. This recommendation came in the form of a white paper submitted to the Norwegian Parliament, Stortinget.

Norway’s Minister of Finance Siv Jensen, commented in a press release, “The Government proposes a new and modernised governance structure for Norges Bank. Moving forward, this new structure lays the foundations for the sound management of the central bank and of the GPFG.”

Some Central Bank Recommendations

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Invesco Buys OppenheimerFunds for $5.7 Billion

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Invesco Ltd. signed a deal to acquire OppenheimerFunds, Inc. from Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual). In turn, MassMutual and the OppenheimerFunds employee shareholders will receive a combination of common and preferred equity consideration, and MassMutual will become a significant shareholder in Invesco, with an approximate 15.5% stake. This strategic transaction will bring Invesco’s total assets under management (AUM) to more than US$ 1.2 trillion. The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of 2019, pending necessary regulatory and other third-party approvals. The transaction gives Invesco access to more third-party distribution platforms.[ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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