DealBook Today's Top Headlines - July 22, 2016: Roger Ailes Is Out at Fox News; Rupert Murdoch Steps In.
FRIDAY, JULY 22, 2016
TODAY'S TOP HEADLINES
BY AMIE TSANG
ROGER AILES IS OUT AT FOX NEWS; RUPERT MURDOCH STEPS INAn unsettling two weeks for Fox News has culminated with theouster of its chairman and chief executive, Roger Ailes. Rupert Murdoch, the media mogul who started the company with Mr. Ailes, will be taking over in the interim, a move that signals there is not going to be an overhaul of the network. Fox News's parent company, 21st Century Fox, had learned that Mr. Ailes was trying to get his on-air stars to criticize those who cooperated with investigators looking into accusations of sexual harassment against him.
In a letter to Mr. Murdoch on Thursday, Mr. Ailes made no mention of the investigation into his workplace behavior or the sexual harassment lawsuit he faces, but he wrote pointedly: "I take particular pride in the role that I have played advancing the careers of the many women I have promoted to executive and on-air positions."
Mr. Ailes will walk away with about $40 million as part of a settlement agreement and cannot start a competitor to Fox News. His stunning fall came as hundreds of Fox employees were gathered in Cleveland for the Republican National Convention, where Donald J. Trump accepted the presidential nomination with a speech filled with dark imagery, portraying the United States as a diminished nation.
In departing from optimistic talk about American opportunity, Mr. Trump was not the only one to break with tradition. His speech had been preceded by the venture capitalist Peter Thiel declaring, "I am proud to be gay." Mr. Thiel is likely to be the first person to have said those words from the stage of a Republican National Convention.
GOLDMAN SACHS RAISES A NEW PRIVATE EQUITY FUNDGoldman Sachs will soon begin marketing a new corporate buyout fund of $5 billion to $8 billion, according to The Wall Street Journal, which cites people familiar with the matter.
Goldman has remained committed to a part of Wall Street that many of its rivals have abandoned, but regulation has still made this new fund a very different creature to its past funds. This new buyout fund is less than half the $20 billion that Goldman raised for GS Capital Partners VI in 2007 and it will only contribute a small slice of its own capital.
Private equity firms are facing tough competition from corporate acquirers and high prices for assets. Goldman also recently led a $10 million financing round in a Brazilian start-up, CargoX, in a move that showed its interest in backing early-stage companies before their valuations soar.
ON THE AGENDAGeneral Electric's latest quarterly earnings presentation will start at 8:30 a.m.
CONTINUING DEBATE OVER THE FINANCIAL CRISIS With some of the economic and political consequences of the 2008 financial crisis manifesting themselves as the frustration and disillusionment in evidence at this week's convention, two New York Times columnists look at the questions that crop up about the period.
In the Street Scene, William D. Cohan examines why there were so few attempts to prosecute the individuals responsible for it. Eric H. Holder Jr., the former attorney general, said he was "frustrated" by the lack of prosecutions of individual wrongdoing, but he took pride in the "record-breaking" amount of money collected in the form of civil penalties. Forcing big banks to hand over their shareholders' money in exchange for burying forever the evidence of wrongdoing is not nearly the same as holding people accountable for their behavior, Mr. Cohan writes.
James B. Stewart examines a paper by Laurence M. Ball, chairman of the economics department at Johns Hopkins University, which argues that the Federal Reserve could have saved Lehman from its chaotic bankruptcy in September 2008.
"Fed officials have not been transparent about the Lehman crisis. Their explanations for their actions rest on flawed economic and legal reasoning and dubious factual claims," Mr. Ball argues.
Karl Case, Economist Who Developed Home Price Index, Dies at 69Mr. Case, a professor at Wellesley College, teamed up with a Yale economist to develop the Case-Shiller Index to track home values in an opaque market.
U.S. Sues to Block Anthem-Cigna and Aetna-Humana MergersThe Justice Department contends that allowing the mergers would quash competition, leading to higher prices for consumers and reducing their benefits.
Chief of Liberty Media Said to Have Suggested Offer for PandoraGreg Maffei, the chief executive of Liberty Media, floated an offer to buy Pandora Media that valued the company at more than $3.4 billion, The Wall Street Journal reports, citing people familiar with the matter.
Chinese Group Said to Be in Advanced Talks to Buy Caesars' Interactive Game UnitA Chinese consortium is in exclusive talks to buy the online games business of Caesars Interactive Entertainment in a deal that could value the unit at more than $4.2 billion, Reuters reports, citing people familiar with the matter.
Elon Musk's Futuristic Plans Give Shareholders Cause to WorryMr. Musk, the chief of the carmaker Tesla, reveals a new master plan; investors wonder how he'll pay for it, Antony Currie writes in Breakingviews.
Singapore Cites Three Banks in Inquiry Into Malaysia's 1MDB FundOfficials found lapses in anti-money laundering controls at DBS Bank, Standard Chartered and UBS as part of a global investigation into the Malaysian sovereign wealth fund.
JPMorgan Said to Be Near Settlement Over Hiring in AsiaJPMorgan Chase is expected to pay around $200 million to settle federal investigations into whether it tried to win business by hiring the sons and daughters of powerful people in Asia, The Wall Street Journal reports, citing people familiar with the matter.
Top Lazard Banker Leaves for Brookfield Asset ManagementThe banker, Ron Bloom, perhaps best known for his work guiding G.M. and Chrysler through bankruptcies, will help manage Brookfield's private equity operations.
Elliott Questions $106 Billion Beer Merger Elliott Management wrote to the board of SABMiller to raise concerns about the structure of its takeover by Anheuser-Busch InBev, The Wall Street Journal reports, citing people with knowledge of the letter.
E.C.B. Keeps Rates Steady, but Still Faces Plenty of UncertaintyThe eurozone is dealing with aftershocks of earlier crises, while coping with more recent threats like Britain's vote to leave the European Union and a shaky banking system in Italy.
F.C.C. Backs Swedish Company to Run American Phone Routing SystemMajor wireless carriers pushed for Telcordia because of the cost savings, but some intelligence officials have raised national security concerns.