E The Latest On HSBC Holdings, Teva, Nokia And Other Global Stocks

Today's financial global news updates covers the latest from Israel, India, Finland, Thailand, Mexico, Spain, China, Britain, Singapore, and Hong Kong.

*HSBC Holdings is selling its 8% stake in Bank of Shanghai to Banco Santander for what is estimated by the Wall St. Journal at $470 mn euros. SAN is attracted by China whereas HSBC, with its origins in the area, already owns both its own branch network and that of Hang Seng Bank. HSBC is also reportedly interested in spinout to shareholders of its UK bank to avoid restrictions on the kinds of business it can do in Britain.

*To no one's surprise, Teva told the world that losing patent protection on its multiple sclerosis drug next year will hurt profits. The Israeli generics company guidance shows that earnings per share would be $4.20-4.50 if it is hoisted by its own petard, copycats of its MS drug. They would be $4.80-$5.10 if generics are delayed. The FY 2014 sales level would be the same, $19.8-20.8 bn.

Separately, TEVA deputy chairman Moshe Many will step down but remain on the board. Dr Many, a urologist and relative of former CEO Eli Hurvitz is one of the most fascinating Israeli medicos of our day, a sort of medical James Bond. Dr. Many, despite being Israeli, managed to secretly and personally treat both the Shah of Iran and Saudi King Fahd.

He famously (and rightly) opposed the huge spending spree on other companies which Teva went in for after its lucky success with Copaxone. "We should have acquired molecules, not companies," he said. Dr. Many was the chief scientist at Teva for years.

Among the companies acquired, Teva wound up with an American chairman, Dr. Philip Frost, who engineered the ouster of CEO Dr. Jeremy Levin. Amazingly, Teva is up 3.25% (Tel Aviv) on the news.

*The World Bank is financing a desalination plant along the Red Sea in Jordan which will supply water for agriculture in Israel, the West Bank, and Israel. The cost will be $250-400 mn depending on how the pilot test goes and turn out 80-100 mn cubic meters of water/year. The plant will also produce salty brine which will be shipped from the Gulf of Aqaba to the Dead Sea which is losing about a meter of water per year. This results from extraction of potash and bromine by Israel Chemical (ISCHF) and its fellow cartel member Jordan Chemical Co. in both of which Potash of Saskatchewan, POT the enforcer, holds a minority stake. Officials of all 3 political entities signed off on the agreement with the World Bank. ISCHF should gain.

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