Shares jump on European deal to solve debt crisis
World financial markets powered higher Thursday in the giddy hope that Europe’s plan to solve its sovereign debt crisis would finally lift the uncertainty over the global economy and markets. In the United States, a sharp jump in stocks continued what has become the biggest monthly rally in 47 years.
But even as stock markets from Paris to New York joined in the euphoria, some bond and credit market rates barely flinched, especially in Italy. That suggests doubts that the agreement will be a long-term solution for Europe’s mountainous debt problem or the pressing challenge of restoring growth to the Continent’s moribund economies.
“Clearly, there is a massive celebration going on, but there are lots of worries, too,” said Jens Nordvig, an analyst with Nomura Securities in New York, who said it was still not clear where European leaders would get the billions of euros in new money they pledged after overnight negotiations in Brussels.
—Graham Bowley and Christine Hauser, The New York Times
As Yahoo’s executive ranks thin, a push for a deal
Yahoo’s to-do list keeps getting longer.
The embattled online media company does not have a permanent chief executive. Potential suitors are circling, albeit tentatively. And employees are growing anxious as senior executives rush for the exits.
With the level of uncertainty so great, Yahoo is eager to sign a deal and calm its ranks, according to several people briefed on the situation.
Its bankers have prodded potential bidders to speed up and sign nondisclosure agreements. Yahoo is working separately with the Alibaba Group of China and Softbank of Japan to assess selling all or parts of its foreign assets to its Asian partners.
Despite contrary reports, Yahoo is not immediately focused on filling its chief executive seat, said these people, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk publicly on the matter. The company has reached out to Heidrick & Struggles International to recruit a permanent leader, but little progress has been made in the search, according to two people with knowledge of the process.
—Evelyn Rusli and Michael J. De La Merced, The New York Times
Georgians approve compromise on WTO deal for Russia
MOSCOW — Georgian negotiators said they had accepted a Swiss compromise proposal that would clear Russia’s path to join the World Trade Organization in December, bringing an end to Moscow’s 18-year application process.
Russia’s top negotiator in Geneva said Russia needed several days to consider the proposal. Maksim Y. Medvedkov told the Itar-Tass news service the Russian side will answer next week.
Pressure on both sides has ramped up in recent days. Georgia’s potential veto power is the last remaining obstacle to Russia’s accession to the WTO and must be resolved within the coming days if Russia is to join before the end of the year, a goal set by Moscow and Washington.
Talks have snagged on how to monitor trade that crosses from Russia into Georgian territory, a question that churns up raw issues from the brief war the two countries fought in 2008. After that conflict, Russia formally recognized two ethnic enclaves, Abkhazia and South Ossetia, as sovereign nations, and its negotiators have cast international monitoring of the border as a challenge to Russia’s stance.
—Ellen Barry, The New York Times
For terrorism suspects, GOP pushes military trials
WASHINGTON — Congressional Republicans increasingly reject any use of the civilian criminal justice system for handling cases involving al-Qaida, hardening their stance in a dispute with the Obama administration over whether such suspects should be held and prosecuted exclusively by the military.
Republican senators are pushing to include a provision in a 2012 military authorization bill that would require al-Qaida suspects accused of plotting attacks and who are not U.S. citizens to be held in military custody — even people arrested in the United States. The White House opposes such a blanket rule.
Amid negotiations over the bill, Republicans — who see their position as a potent election issue in 2012 — delivered a show of unity in support of such ideas late last week, as 45 of the party’s 47 senators voted for a similar proposal to ban civilian trials for such “enemy combatants.” The endorsement highlighted a dramatic shift to the right in the politics of counterterrorism since President Barack Obama succeeded George W. Bush.
—Charlie Savage, The New York Times
Disney Channel to enter Russian market
LOS ANGELES — Walt Disney Co. on Thursday said it had completed a deal to introduce a nationally broadcast version of the Disney Channel in Russia, one of the world’s last big untapped entertainment markets.
Disney, which has aggressively tried to crack Russia for years with only modest success, said it would acquire 49 percent of Seven TV, a broadcast channel that reaches about 40 million households, or more than 75 percent of Russia’s measured television audience. Seven TV will remain majority owned by UTH Russia, a fast-growing media company.
It was a small deal in financial terms — about $300 million — but a big step forward for Disney’s ambitions in the country. “We had a toehold, but this gives us an important foothold,” Robert A. Iger, Disney’s chief executive, said by telephone from Moscow.
—Brooks Barnes, The New York Times