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Influence of the Future Fund

According to the Australian, “Future Fund boss Paul Costello has performed well in his three years at the helm but still seems blissfully unaware of the fund’s impact on the stockmarket. In a luncheon address at the Melbourne Financial Services Symposium, Costello noted some of the recent weakness in Telstra’s stock price was sheeted back to the fact that the fund is now free to sell more its 11 per cent stake in the company.

He added: “I frankly doubt that.”

Granted he wouldn’t be the only reason with uncertainty over federal government regulation and the fact the company has gone ex-growth being more to the point, but one assumes the Future Fund holding would add to the negative pall hanging over the stock. Then there was last year’s disclosure that the fund was considering joining Canadian Pension Plan and Ontario Teachers proposed bid for Transurban.

Costello confided he made the disclosure because there was media comment he might join a rival bid and wanted to set the record straight but added any further comment remained the responsibility of either Transurban or the Canadians. Having broken his silence in a situation which would compel few other companies to speak up, one might think Costello could explain where he sits now especially after Transurban couldn’t find the Fund’s name on its share register given it is behind an HSBC nominee.

That aside the fund is travelling well with financial year-to-date returns of 9 per cent, well ahead of its mandate to achieve CPI plus 4.5 per cent.

Costello also flagged a move into timber investments and said it would release some time soon a guide to just how it voted its Australian shares now it has taken corporate governance issues in house. Separately, amid concern expressed by Lend Lease chair David Crawford that some funds were outsourcing their voting obligations by using advice from Risk Metrics et al, Costello said the funds took advice from various parties on its voting.”

read more: The Australian

SouthGobi’s CEO Arrested, CIC Struggles with Investment

The China Investment Corporation (CIC) has long struggled with its investments in coal assets, specifically in globally-listed coal miner SouthGobi Resources Ltd, which operates its flagship coal mine in Mongolia. In November 2009, CIC and SouthGobi Resources inked a convertible debenture deal. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Qatar Central Bank Deals with MSCI

MSCI, a stock index company whose benchmarks influence investor behavior, has tremendous indirect power impacting the stock markets of smaller economies. In 1988, MSCI released its emerging markets index, a now-widely-used benchmark for many institutional investors wanting access to growth markets. China and South Korea make up the majority of the benchmark, but smaller economies such as Poland, Chile and even Qatar make up other pieces of it.

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bcIMC Buys into Bottling Business with PAI in €1.623 Billion Takeover of Refresco

Dutch soft-drink bottler Refresco Group N.V. has agreed to a buyout offer for all 81.2 million of its shares from French private equity firm PAI Partners SAS (PAI) and Canadian pension manager British Columbia Investment Management Corporation (bcIMC) in exchange for €20 in cash per ordinary share for a total consideration of €1.623 billion. Refresco’s major shareholders, which includes 3i Group, and shareholding members of its boards, who represent 26.5% of outstanding shares, have said they stand behind the deal.

Refresco’s board rejected an initial offer from PAI in April 2017 of €1.4 billion, which they felt did not adequately capture the value added by their plans to bolster its presence in North America through the acquisition of Canadian bottler Cott TB, a deal that went through in July for US$ 1.25 billion.

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