Barclay’s Share Transactions Enough to Make Your Head Spin; Aetna’s Q2 Earnings Up 17 Percent; Clash of the Communications Titans

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Barclay’s Share Transactions Enough to Make Your Head Spin (Bloomberg)

Barclay’s Plc, Great Britain’s second-largest bank as measured by assets on hand, plans to raise 5.8 billion pounds ($8.9 billion) by offering current shareholders rights to additional units. For every four shares already owned, individuals can purchase one new share at a 40 percent discount to yesterday’s closing price. In addition, to meet regulator demands to “cut leverage,” the English banking giant also will shrink assets by 80 billion to 1.05 trillion pounds, as well as sell 2 billion pounds of loss-absorbing securities. All of these transactions are being undertaken so Barclay’s can comply with the country’s Basel III rules for bank capital safety, meaning that each institution must hold up to 3 pounds of equity for every 100 pounds of assets.  So, after all of these transactions, investors owning shares of Barclay’s may want to check with their broker for an absolute accounting.

Aetna’s Q2 Earnings Up 17 Percent (YahooFinance)

The Hartford, Conn.-based insurer announced that its second-quarter earnings jumped 17 percent, causing the company to raise its 2013 forecast. Revenue came in at $536 million, or $1.49 per share, up from $457 million ($1.32 a share) in 2012. Adjusted earnings came in at $1.52, excluding one-time costs associated with the acquisition of Coventry Health Care. The Coventry deal is also being credited for Aetna’s increased revenue and enrollment gains. Is this a case where Obamacare worked for someone?

Clash of the Communications Titans (Reuters)

In a clash that couldn’t possibly benefit investors in either company, Time Warner Cable came close to blacking out the CBS network in New York and other cities, but backed off at the last second. The dispute between the two U.S. communications giants stems from a disagreement on rights fees. And it’s still not resolved, meaning Time Warner could still pull the plug on CBS, even though the network is rated No. 1 in viewership. Such a blackout would affect approximately 3.5 million viewers, but would not affect CBS stations owned by other companies.  So who will ultimately win in this tussle of TV titans — not the investor, that’s for sure.

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