World crude prices have stopped falling precipitously – for now. Plenty seem to be betting that prices can rise quickly from $85 a barrel, if a ‘floor’ is not far below. Lex isn’t so sure – and in this live note will look at the winners and losers of a longer oil slump. Join us at 12pm London for the discussion. 

HP has announced that it will separate its enterprise business into one publicly-traded company and its PC and printers into another. This may increase returns on capital at both — but if so, then why did the HP of three years ago say it wouldn’t split itself in two? Lex’s writers discuss in a live session. 

Bill Gross has left Pimco, the firm he co-founded in 1971 to join Janus Capital; statement here. Lex is very interested in what this means for Allianz, Pimco’s owner, and the future of the big bond house itself.

This is a live format in which we’ll share our thoughts on a note we’re writing in real-time, and readers will be able to weigh in too on the right. So don’t be shy! 

Well, Janus is the Roman god of beginnings and endings.

Bill Gross has left Pimco, the firm he co-founded in 1971 to join Janus Capital; statement here. Lex is very interested in what this means for Allianz, Pimco’s owner, and the future of the big bond house itself. 

Heineken has rejected an approach from SABMiller. Is this a cue to the one last big round of beer market consolidation which M&A bankers are (unsurprisingly) often rather keen to talk up? Who would be involved — and exactly where would shareholder value come from?  

See you at 1pm (London time) on Monday, when Lex will be discussing brewer M&A in one of our new open-note formats on this blog. (It’s like Alphaville’s Markets Live.)

The trigger is Heineken’s rejection of an approach from SABMiller. We however are more interested in that one last big round of beer market consolidation which M&A bankers are (unsurprisingly) often rather keen to talk up. Who would be involved — and exactly where would shareholder value come from? 

It’s sad to see any business file for administration.

Still, with the fall of Phones4U, you could argue that the days of independent phone shops acting as middlemen between networks and customers had long been numbered (if there are going to be shops, the networks want to run them themselves). Any company which relies on four big suppliers is at risk in any case: this is what has ultimately sunk Phones4U, after Vodafone and EE at last pulled out.

Though did anyone tell high yield bond investors? 

Or, why it isn’t surprising at all that RBS and Lloyds would move their respective holding companies to the UK, probably overnight, if Scotland voted to become independent. Despite the odd packaging of this as news by the UK press.

It’s the emergency liquidity (or ELA). Click chart to enlarge: 

Not that negative zone – Europe: 

RBS posted surprisingly high profits on Friday — with shares in the UK bank rising 14 per cent. But what caused it: a decline in impairments, or better top-line growth? Lex discusses that question, and how to value the bank now.

This is a live format in which we’ll share our thoughts on a note we’re writing in real-time, and readers will be able to weigh in too on the right. So don’t be shy!