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Breakingviews

Reuters Breakingviews is the world's leading source of agenda-setting financial insight. As the Reuters brand for financial commentary, we dissect the big business and economic stories as they break around the world every day. A global team of about 30 correspondents in New York, London, Hong Kong and other major cities provides expert analysis in real time. Sign up for a free trial of our full service at http://www.breakingviews.com/trial and follow us on Twitter @Breakingviews and at www.breakingviews.com. All opinions expressed are those of the authors.

BREAKINGVIEWS - Ant Financial quacks like a bank

Ant Financial walks like a bank and quacks like one, too. As it lines up new investors ready to value it at some $150 billion, the Alibaba-affiliated outfit is flipping the fintech pitch and describing itself instead as techfin. Ant Financial has become part of the fabric of Chinese finance, though. Beijing would be wise to regulate accordingly.

Breakingviews - Review: Silicon Valley gets a reality transfusion

Silicon Valley is driven by economic power, and the ability to transmute hard science into fortunes. But its real fuel is stories, and the quintessential American desire to believe. Apple founder Steve Jobs showed that quixotic sounding ideas sometimes become reality thanks to capital, effort and acquired knowledge. Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes, meanwhile, showed sometimes they don’t.

Breakingviews - The Exchange: The failure and future of globalism

Not everyone has been a winner from globalization. Eurasia Group founder Ian Bremmer talked to Amanda Gomez about his book “Us vs. Them: The Failure of Globalism” and discussed what political and business leaders can do to make the world economic system work for all.

Breakingviews - UK’s costly royal wedding is worth every penny

Britain’s costly royal wedding is worth every penny. The marriage of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle on Saturday could leave taxpayers out of pocket by as much as 30 million pounds. But if the transatlantic union lures even a small number of extra American tourists to the United Kingdom, the expense can be easily recouped.

Breakingviews - Citi’s Hong Kong slap has lesson for new IPO boom

Citi’s shortcomings on a small Hong Kong IPO offer lessons ahead of a new listings boom. On Thursday, the city’s securities regulator fined the U.S. bank roughly $7 million over the 2009 initial public offering of Real Gold Mining, which turned out to be a real dud. As a wave of biotechnology outfits boasting complex products prepares to list, bankers will have to stay vigilant.

Breakingviews - Closing tech’s gender gap will take decades

About one in three employees at Google, Facebook and Apple is a woman. That’s an imbalance that tech sector executives Sheryl Sandberg and Tim Cook say they want to change. Yet even if their companies set a target of just over half their new recruits being women, a Breakingviews calculator shows that closing the gender gap will take up to 15 years.

Breakingviews - China's airlines are set for a long-haul price war

Chinese airlines are ready to rumble. Having freed local carriers to hike fees at home, Beijing will now let them compete on long-hauls to overseas destinations. A price war to serve popular destinations is in the offing, as the Big Three - China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines and Air China - fight it out. That will come at foreign rivals' expense.

Breakingviews - Italian radical agenda is a recipe for chaos

Italy’s mooted radical agenda is a recipe for chaos. A leaked government programme drawn up by likely coalition partners the 5-Star Movement and the League says countries should be able to exit the euro zone, alongside other unorthodox measures and spending pledges. The plan promises a confrontation with European Union partners that is not yet reflected in Italy’s relatively low bond yields. 

Breakingviews - Viewsroom: 1MDB rears head in Malaysian election

The $5 bln sovereign-wealth fund’s scandal played a role in voters replacing Prime Minister Najib Razak with nonagenarian Mahathir Mohamad. Its resurgence could mean bad news for Goldman Sachs and Najib himself. Plus: Walmart nabs Flipkart in a big bet on e-commerce in India.