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Breakingviews - “Do or die” Brexit condemns sterling to new lows

Sterling is a collateral victim of the race to be Britain’s next prime minister. The frontrunner, Boris Johnson, has promised Britain will be out of the European Union by the end of October, “do or die”. What’s more, he and his rival, Jeremy Hunt, are vying with each other to take a harder stance on Brexit. Whatever good that does either man’s chances, it’s inflicting considerable damage on the pound. More pain probably lies ahead.

Breakingviews - Miner exits shift coal spotlight to Anglo American

There's a rush for the exits in thermal coal. Miner BHP has become the latest heavyweight to consider a sale, according to Bloomberg. That's sensible, given weak prices, environmental pressure and a business that is barely material for the world's largest digger. But it shifts the spotlight to Anglo American, for whom the power station fuel matters more.

Breakingviews - Rio sounds copper warning from Mongolian steppe

Rio Tinto has sounded a copper warning from the Mongolian steppe. The $104 billion mining giant says its flagship Oyu Tolgoi expansion in the country's south will be up to 30 months late, and could cost as much as a third more than planned. That's a fresh blow to a project that has been battered by local politics and other troubles for years. It's also a reminder of just how hard it has become to dig up the coveted red metal.

Breakingviews - Silicon Valley is trapped in political purgatory

Silicon Valley finds itself trapped in political purgatory. Facebook can afford to shrug off an expected $5 billion fine over privacy, but the $580 billion social network and several of its peers face a grilling from regulators and Congress on multiple fronts. Big tech doesn’t want a Wall Street-like straitjacket, but growth will suffer without clear rules of the road.

Breakingviews - Morgan Stanley’s Asian crown gets Bud-shaped dent

Morgan Stanley’s Asian crown just got a Budweiser-shaped dent. Along with JPMorgan, the U.S. bank was joint sponsor of AB InBev’s now-scrapped listing of its Asia unit, which was intended to raise $9.8 billion. The setback takes the shine off its local league-table pre-eminence.

Breakingviews - The Exchange: Tiananmen 3.0

Han Dongfang was expelled from China for organising worker protests that were bloodily suppressed in 1989. He founded China Labour Bulletin, which tracks factory protests, strikes and policy. He speaks with Pete Sweeney about the economic stress on workers and college graduates.

Breakingviews - Driverless Argonauts are all on valuation quests

Ford Motor boss Jim Hackett says the self-driving joint venture he struck with Volkswagen’s Herbert Diess on Friday “instantaneously makes it the biggest platform” in the industry. Autonomous vehicles can potentially reduce congestion and traffic-related fatalities, improve carmaker margins and more. The trouble is that working out how to value these outfits is a quest in itself.

Breakingviews - Review: The struggle of Russia’s crony capitalists

How did Vladimir Putin and his allies take control of Russia’s economy? That’s the story Anders Aslund sets out to tell in “Russia’s Crony Capitalism: The Path from Market Economy to Kleptocracy”. The president is cast as a patriarchal overlord who handsomely rewards those loyal to him. His generosity has helped to create a new elite of friends, former co-workers and relatives. What’s less clear is what, if anything, might upset this cosy arrangement.

Breakingviews - China’s awkward rate-setting status quo to persist

Temporary policies have a habit of becoming permanent, as the People’s Bank of China well knows. It might seek to half-follow a U.S. rate cut expected later this month, yet it’s not clear exactly how. Officials have been looking to scrap the benchmark rate that offers the most straightforward way to do so.

Breakingviews - Trump lands pre-emptive blow in digital tax fight

Donald Trump has landed a pre-emptive blow in a brewing fight over how to tax technology giants like Facebook. The U.S. president on Wednesday initiated a probe into whether France’s digital levy unfairly targets American companies. The move gives him more leverage in talks about how to revamp international corporate tax but also means there’s more riding on the success of those discussions.

About 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.

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