Trian to skip PPG board challenge after new commitments: sources

(Reuters) – Trian Fund Management LP will not challenge PPG Industries Inc’s (PPG.N) board of directors at its 2019 shareholder meeting after the U.S. paints and coatings company met some of the activist hedge fund’s demands and announced new financial targets, people familiar with the matter said on Thursday. Trian, run by billionaire Nelson Peltz, asked PPG last October to replace its Chief Executive Michael McGarry with former CEO Chuck Bunch, look at how it uses its balance sheet, explore a break-up of the company, and eliminate the company’s practice…

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Your Money: The words and wisdom of Jack Bogle

NEW YORK (Reuters) – America just lost a true giant in investing legend and Vanguard Group founder Jack Bogle. The creator of the first indexed mutual fund died on Wednesday reut.rs/2Cu5i09 in his longtime home of Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania. He was 89. Bogle could have been a billionaire many times over, but he structured Vanguard so that proceeds would return to shareholders, which tells you all you need to know about the man. In 2016, I interviewed Bogle for Reuters’ “Life Lessons†reut.rs/2dAMG1I series about what he had learned over…

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Finding the bright side in a graying U.S. workforce

CHICAGO (Reuters) – (The opinions expressed here are those of the author, a columnist for Reuters.) Economists call it the “old-age dependency ratio” – a rough measure of the balance between people who work and retirees. The ratio compares the number of people over age 65 – classified as “old” – with those aged 15 to 64 – and it is not headed in a healthy direction: by 2040, there will be 2.7 working-age Americans for each retiree, down from 4.8 in 2010. That number from the Federal Reserve Bank…

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Your Money: Can you make $100 grow into a house?

NEW YORK (Reuters) – My preteen daughter earned her first dollars in 2018, so I wanted to seed her retirement account. But what can you do with $100 or so? For people just starting to invest, those first steps are always the hardest. Most financial institutions do not even want you. Choose wrong, and your whole balance can be eaten up in fees. On the other hand, if you get it even a little bit right, you could enjoy the magic of compounding interest. Dennis Nolte, a certified financial planner…

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Exclusive: Jana liquidates two hedge funds, to focus only on activism

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Jana Partners LLC, founded by Barry Rosenstein, is shutting down two stock-picking hedge funds following losses and will focus instead on its main strategy of investing in a handful of companies and pushing management to improve their performance. The New York-based firm, which managed $11 billion at its peak in 2015, will liquidate its Jana Partners and Jana Nirvana funds, the firm told its investors in a letter seen by Reuters. Instead it will focus solely on its Jana Strategic Investment (JSI) fund, which manages $1.5…

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Investors unnerved by company debt, shunning Europe, UK: BAML survey

LONDON (Reuters) – Investors’ concerns about company leverage hit a ten-year high as they continued to position against the risk of a global trade war, Tuesday’s Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s January fund manager survey found. Fund managers named the dollar as the most crowded trade – ahead of tech stocks – for the second month running, while the trade war scenario topped the list of biggest tail risks for the eighth straight month. The dollar is seen as the most overvalued since 2002, BAML strategists wrote. The currency was…

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Investors increasingly concerned about company debt: BAML survey

LONDON (Reuters) – Investors’ fears about company leverage hit a ten-year high, Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s January fund manager survey found on Tuesday, also highlighting their continued concern about a global trade war. Fund managers named the U.S. dollar as the most crowded trade – ahead of tech stocks – for the second month running, while trade war topped the list of biggest tail risks for the eighth straight month. Corporate indebtedness was the chief concern among fund managers for the first time since 2009, the survey found, with…

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Proxy advisory firm ISS backs two dissident nominees in Luby's fight

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Proxy advisory firm Institutional Shareholder Services is recommending that shareholders elect two dissident nominees at Luby’s Inc. after the current board oversaw “alarming underperformance” at the casual dining chain. ISS recommended votes for Jeff Gramm, whose hedge fund Bandera Capital is running the proxy contest, and his father, Philip Gramm, a former U.S. senator from Texas, according to the report seen by Reuters. Bandera asked shareholders to elect four dissidents.

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Your Money: How Dry January is changing finances

NEW YORK (Reuters) – (The writer is a Reuters contributor. The opinions expressed are his own.) Next time you go out for a drink with friends, take a look around and see what people are sipping. Instead of Merlot or Rum-and-Coke, you might find a lot more sparkling water. Welcome to Dry January. Originally conceived as a public health campaign in the United Kingdom, Dry January asks participants to skip alcohol in the first month of the year. It has gone from 4,000 participants in 2012 to four million in…

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Investor Schonfeld opens London office, aims to boost foreign bets

BOSTON (Reuters) – Multibillion-dollar U.S. hedge fund investor Schonfeld Strategic Advisors opened an office in London and hired two portfolio managers as the firm seeks to make more investments outside of the United States, an executive said on Friday. Schonfeld, which mostly manages trading magnate Steven Schonfeld’s personal fortune and has long been known for its computer-driven investing, had been looking to set up a physical presence in London for more than a year, Reuters reported previously. For the London office, which was opened late in 2018, Schonfeld hired Alex…

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