U.S. dominates second quarter global M&A as mega deals roll on

NEW YORK/LONDON (Reuters) - Mega deals set the pace for mergers and acquisitions (M&A) globally in the second quarter of 2019, as large U.S. companies defied trade row jitters and seized on strong equity and debt capital markets to agree on transformative combinations.

Global M&A volume reached $842 billion in the second quarter, down 13% and 27% from the first quarter of 2019 and second quarter of 2018 respectively, according to preliminary data from financial data provider Refinitiv.

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Hedge fund chief Daniel Loeb opposes United Technologies, Raytheon merger

BOSTON (Reuters) - Billionaire investor Daniel Loeb said on Friday that his hedge fund Third Point LLC will vote against the planned merger of United Technologies Corp (UTX.N) and Raytheon Co (RTN.N), saying there is no “strategic rationale for this transaction.”

“We have concluded that the proposed combination of United Technologies and Raytheon is ill-conceived and unlikely to create value for UTC shareholders,” Loeb wrote in a letter to the board of directors of United Technologies

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Halfway through 2019, tech leads on Wall Street

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Technology stocks are Wall Street’s top performers as 2019 hits half-way, with investors betting on lower interest rates, although Apple and chipmakers face turbulence related to the U.S.-China trade war.

The S&P 500 information technology index has surged 9% in June, its strongest month in three years. That rally, and the S&P 500s .SPX record high on June 21, reflect investors increased appetite for risk as they become more confident theFederal Reserve will cut interest rates to support a slowing economy.

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U.S. court urged to throw out 'Pharma Bro' Martin Shkreli's conviction

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A lawyer for former pharmaceutical executive Martin Shkreli on Friday urged a federal appeals court to overturn Shkreli’s criminal conviction for defrauding investors in hedge funds he founded.

The lawyer, Mark Baker, argued that the jury that convicted Shkreli was given incorrect instructions about securities fraud. Baker faced a barrage of skeptical questions from a three-judge panel during a brief proceeding in the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan.

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U.S.-China trade talks: where they are and what's at stake

(Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping are due to meet on Saturday at the Group of 20 (G20) summit in Japan to try to resurrect a deal to end a costly trade war.

Negotiations between trade teams from the world’s two largest economies broke down in May when Washington accused Beijing of reneging on commitments to change its laws to enact economic reforms.

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Apple moves Mac Pro production to China from U.S.: Wall Street Journal

(Reuters) - Apple Inc (AAPL.O) is shifting manufacturing of its new Mac Pro desktop computer to China from the United States, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday, citing people familiar with the matter.

The move comes at a time when the Trump administration has threatened to impose new levies to cover nearly all imports from China and pressured Apple and other manufacturers to make their products in the United States if they want to avoid tariffs.

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Australia's Domino's Pizza says it will defend itself against staff underpayment class action

(Reuters) - Australia’s Domino’s Pizza Enterprises (DMP.AX) said on Friday it did not mislead franchisees over payments to their employees and that it had not formally received court documents about a class action.

It reiterated that it will defend itself against the class action over underpayment of staff, although also said the lead applicant had not made any claim against his franchisee employer and no franchisee employer was party to the action.

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Faces for cookware: data collection industry flourishes as China pursues AI ambitions

PINGDINGSHAN, China (Reuters) - In a village in central China’s Henan province, amid barking dogs and wandering chickens, villagers gather along a dirt road to trade images of their faces for kettles, pots and tea cups.

At the front of the line, a woman stands in front of a camera zip-tied to a tripod. She holds a photograph of her head with the eyes and the nose cut out in front of her face and slowly rotates side to side.

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Trump agrees to no preconditions for meeting with China's Xi: Kudlow

WASHINGTON/BEIJING (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump has agreed to no preconditions for his high-stakes meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping this weekend and is maintaining his threat to impose new tariffs on Chinese goods, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said on Thursday.

Trump’s decision on whether to impose new tariffs on a $300 billion list of nearly all remaining Chinese imports will depend on the outcome of the Saturday meeting on the sidelines of a G20 summit in Osaka, Japan, Kudlow told Fox News Channel.

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