1.VOLKSWAGEN:- Volkswagen’s largest shareholder, Porsche SE, supports Volkswagen’s proposed plan for an IPO of luxury sportscar maker Porsche AG, the holding company said on Tuesday, adding no final decision had been made.
The plan, proposed by Volkswagen in February, includes selling 25% plus 1 ordinary share in the carmaker to Porsche SE as well as listing up to 25% of Porsche AG’s preferred stock, and paying out 49% of IPO proceeds to Volkswagen’s shareholders.
“Porsche SE thereby supports the plans of Volkswagen AG to expand its financial flexibility and accelerate the technological transformation of the group,” Porsche SE said in a statement reporting its annual results.
“Due to the leading positioning of Porsche AG in the sport and luxury segment, this attractive investment would diversify our portfolio and our dividend inflows,” added finance and IT chief Johannes Lattwein.
Porsche Automobil Holding SE, which is controlled by the Porsche and Piech families and holds a 31.4% equity stake in Volkswagen, reported a group result after tax of 4.6 billion euros ($5.06 billion)in 2021.
2.BARCLAYS : Shares in Barclays fell as much as 6% in early trading on Tuesday, after one of its top investors offloaded stock roughly equivalent to a 3% stake in the lender.
An unnamed investor launched a sales process for 575 million shares on Monday evening, facilitated by Goldman Sachs.
The offering was priced at 150 pence on Tuesday, towards the top of the target range of 147.50 pence to 150.75 pence, but this still represented a discount greater than 6% to Monday’s closing price, heaping pressure on the share price.
Barclays shares opened down around 6%, near the sale price, before clawing back some ground. The stock was last down 4.3% at 153.5 pence at 0727 GMT.
Top shareholders with around a 3% stake in Barclays include the Qatar Investment Authority and Blackrock, according to Refiniv Eikon data. Blackrock declined to comment when approached by Reuters on Monday, while QIA was not immediately available for comment.
The sale comes as Barclays grapples with a fresh compliance and risk mis-step, after it disclosed an estimated 450 million pound ($589 million) loss on Monday due to overselling structured products in the United States.
3.MAERSK:- Danish shipper Maersk said the Shanghai lockdown will severely hurt trucking services and increase transport costs, as China’s intensifying efforts to fight the spread of COVID-19 further rattles global supply chains.
The Chinese coastal city, home to some of the world’s busiest sea and airports, began locking down half of the city on Monday and intends to do the same to the other half for four days starting Friday in a two-stage testing exercise.
While it has kept its airports and deepwater port open, it has imposed stringent movement curbs, barring unapproved vehicles from streets and telling millions of people not to leave their homes.
“Trucking service in and out (of) Shanghai will be severely impacted by 30% due to a full lockdown on Shanghai’s Pudong and Puxi areas in turn until 5th April,” Maersk, the world’s second-largest container shipping company, said in an advisory to clients on Monday.
4.UNI CREDIT:Leading investor advisory firms have again raised concerns over the salary of UniCredit CEO Andrea Orcel, with one recommending for a second straight year shareholders vote against his pay.
Orcel, former head of investment banking at Swiss bank UBS, narrowly dodged an investor revolt last year over the remuneration package that made him one of Europe’s best paid bank CEOs when he took the reins at UniCredit in April.
Leading proxy advisers Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) and Glass Lewis again took aim at his compensation ahead of an annual general meeting on April 8, but ISS stopped short of calling for investors to reject the bank’s pay policy.
Orcel received 6.7 million euros ($7.4 million) from UniCredit in 2021, including 4.8 million euros in shares as a sign-on bonus unrelated to performance.
The banker, one of Europe’s best known and highest paid dealmakers, had forfeited millions in deferred pay from UBS in joining.
His variable pay, equivalent to up to twice the 2.5 million euro fixed annual pay, is from 2022 linked to targets set under the ‘UniCredit Unlocked’ plan Orcel unveiled in December.
While acknowledging the “significantly improved framework” for Orcel’s remuneration, ISS said the package remained “concerning and of particular concern is the high cap to severance payments (15 million euros or six times the fixed pay).”
Glass Lewis went further, saying it did not believe “the company’s remuneration strategy, as currently constituted, is sufficiently aligned with shareholders’ best interests.”
“As such, we do not believe that this proposal merits shareholder support”, it added in a report seen by Reuters.
Addressing Glass Lewis’ criticism in a letter to shareholders, UniCredit said it was “surprised and disappointed” by the firm’s stance.
5.TESLA:-Tesla’s announcement on Monday that it will seek shareholder approval to increase its share count in order to enable a stock split adds to a recent wave of megacap companies splitting their shares in a bid to attract more investors.
Tesla said in a filing it would hold a vote at its upcoming annual shareholder meeting to increase the number of authorized shares in order to enable a stock split.
A stock split by Tesla, which would have be approved by its board of directors, would be the electric car maker’s second since 2020, and it would follow stock split announcements by other major U.S. companies in recent years.
Companies split their shares to make their stock prices appear less expensive and appeal to more investors. However, splitting a stock does not affect its underlying fundamentals.
Still, BofA Global Research said in recent research note that stock splits “historically are bullish” for companies that enact them, with their shares marking an average returns of 25% one year later versus 9% for the market overall.
Tesla’s stock surged 8% on Monday, adding over $100 billion to its stock market value.
Amazon has gained about 20% since March 9, when the ecommerce heavyweight announced a stock split that will take effect on June 6. That compares to a 7% gain in the Nasdaq during the same period. During that time, Wall Street has also seen a broad rebound in megacap growth stocks following losses earlier this year, as well as volatility related to rising interest rates and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Tesla was the most traded stock among Fidelity’s online brokerage customers on Monday, with buy and sell orders almost evenly split, suggesting retail investors are cautious about the company.