John Foley is Reuters Breakingviews' editor for Europe, the Middle East and Africa. He relocated from Beijing in July 2015. John established Breakingviews’ Hong Kong bureau in 2009, and has written on China’s economy and financial system, mergers and acquisitions, capital markets and consumer goods. Before joining Breakingviews in 2004, John worked as a copywriter for a London-based advertising agency. He read English Literature at Exeter College, Oxford. Follow John on Twitter @johnsfoley
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The Winter Games won’t boost China’s growth, end repression, or win the country much extra respect. It might help soft power, but then most countries already do whatever China asks. Freed from such false hopes, everyone can sit back, have fun and admire the fake snow.
The UK bank raised its dividend despite laying aside 1.4 bln pounds to atone for mis-sold products. Lloyds investors hope more of its 2.9 billion pounds of excess capital will come their way. It might, if the taxman, regulators and peeved customers don’t get there first.
The state-controlled UK bank is building capital, shrinking assets and expunging historical nasties. The second quarter’s 11 percent operating profit growth reassures. Yet non-state investors’ greatest desires – dividends and an end to government meddling – are not yet in sight.
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