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27 Sep 2021

1.HUAWEI:  The release of Huawei Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou is an opportunity for a reboot of bilateral relations with the United States and Canada but “toxic political rhetoric” could still “poison” the atmosphere”, Chinese state media said on Monday.

The Global Times tabloid, which backed by the ruling Communist Party, said in an editorial that Meng’s return to China was a sign of easing bilateral economic and trade tensions but accused “anti-China forces” of creating noise, citing U.S. Senator Marco Rubio criticism of her release as an example.

“Whether China-US and China-Canada relations can now take advantage of what is a clear opportunity for a reboot depends on the extent to which Washington and Ottawa are willing to heed the lessons of their rash ploy,” said the state-backed China Daily newspaper in a separate editorial.

Meng arrived in China on Saturday, ending her near three-year U.S. extradition fight, the same day two Canadians detained by Beijing for more than 1,000 days returned home. She was allowed to go home after reaching an agreement with U.S. prosecutors on Friday to end a bank fraud case against her.

Chinese state media welcomed Meng back over the weekend but were silent about Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, who were released hours after Meng on Friday. They had been detained by Chinese authorities just days after Meng’s arrest.

The Global Times, in a separate peace published late on Sunday, said Kovrig and Spavor “confessed their guilt for the crimes they committed in China and were released on bail for medical reasons before they departed China”, citing a source close to the matter.

China’s foreign ministry has not commented publicly on their release.

Spavor was accused of supplying photographs of military equipment to Kovrig and sentenced to 11 years in jail in August. Kovrig had still been awaiting sentencing.

2.STANDARD CHARTERED:-Kuwait’s Burgan Bank has hired Citi and Standard Chartered  to lead a planned sale of senior U.S. dollar-denominated six-year bonds, a bank document showed on Monday.

Other banks on the deal are Bank ABC, Emirates NBD Capital, First Abu Dhabi Bank, HSBC, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, JPMorgan , Mizuho Securities and NBK Capital.

The unsecured bonds will be of benchmark size, which typically means at least $500 million, and will be non-callable for five years, the document from one of the banks showed.

Earlier this month, Burgan Bank received preliminary approval from Kuwait’s central bank to issue up to $500 million in senior unsecured bonds and last week received approval from the Capital Markets Authority.

The bonds will be issued under Burgan’s Euro Medium Term Note Programme. They are expected to have a fixed coupon rate for five years then a floating rate for the final year to maturity, should the bank not “call” the bonds.

Closing the bond sale will allow Burgan “to reinforce its long-term liquidity and regulatory liquidity ratios,” it has said in an exchange filing.

3.NIKE- Nike is still a growth company with plenty of market opportunities ahead, according to its Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Matt Friend.

Friend made this statement following the release of the company’s Q1 financial results, praising the company’s Consumer Direct Acceleration Strategy: “NIKE is a growth company with a market opportunity as large as it’s ever been,” he said. “Our Q1 results illustrate how NIKE’s Consumer Direct Acceleration strategy continues to fuel growth and transform our long-term financial model.”

Last year, Nike changed its business strategy. It shifted from an indirect to a direct business model, cutting off the middlemen. That helped the athletic apparel company raise its operating margins from around 8 percent in May 2020 to 15.5 percent in the most recent quarter.

I am bullish on Nike stock. (See Nike stock charts on TipRanks)

Solid Performance at Nike

Nike had a solid Q1. Revenues grew 12 percent, led by NIKE Direct growth and the normalization of owned physical retail, which grew 24 percent, surpassing the pre-pandemic levels from the first quarter of fiscal 2020. Meanwhile, NIKE Brand Digital business showed continued strong growth, increasing by 25 percent, led by North America growth of 43 percent.

4.TESLA: Tesla  Inc’s Shanghai factory is expected to produce 300,000 cars in the first nine months of the year, capped by a delivery rush in the end of the July-September quarter, despite a global semiconductor shortage, two sources said.

The factory makes the electric Model 3 sedans and Model Y sport-utility vehicles for domestic and international markets, including Germany and Japan.

Around 240,000 vehicles were shipped from the factory in the first eight months, including many for export, according to data from the China Passenger Car Association. Tesla has not announced details on the factory’s production.

The sources requested anonymity, as they were not allowed to speak to media. Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

In August, an official in the area where Tesla’s factory is located said it is expected to product 450,000 vehicles this year, including 66,100 for export.

Tesla is hiring managers for legal and external relations teams in China as it faces public scrutiny in the country over data security and customer service complaints.

5. CREDIT SUISSE: Credit Suisse’s board of directors is convinced Chief Executive Thomas Gottstein is the right person to strategically realign the bank by curbing risk appetite, the Swiss bank’s chairman said in a newspaper interview published on Sunday.

Asked whether he was planning to replace Gottstein as CEO or take over the operational lead of the bank himself, Antonio Horta-Osorio was quoted as replying “no” in the interview with Swiss Sunday newspaper SonntagsBlick.

“I can only say with certainty that Thomas Gottstein has the full confidence of the board of directors,” he said.

“In the difficult phase the bank went through recently, he impressively demonstrated his leadership skills. He is the right man for the strategic realignment of the bank.”

Horta-Osorio, who took over as chairman in April, said the bank had to curb risk appetite and set the right incentives, while also hiring and supporting staff sharing its values.

“(The strategy discussion) is not finished so we cannot talk about it publicly yet,” he said.

Also present at the interview, Gottstein said it was extremely important for the chairman and CEO to work together closely and harmoniously in the current critical phase.

Credit Suisse is trying to rebuild its reputation after suffering huge losses this year with supply chain finance funds linked to Greensill and the collapse of investment fund Archegos.

Gottstein said the bank had thoroughly analysed its balance sheet. “We did not find any cases comparable to Greensill or Archegos.”