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Bloomberg Businessweek

Bloomberg Businessweek 1/29/2018

Each issue of Businessweek features in-depth perspectives on the financial markets, industries, trends, technology and people guiding the economy. Get the digital magazine subscription today and draw upon Businessweek's timely incisive analysis to help you make better decisions about your career, your business, and your personal investments.

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United States
Bloomberg Finance LP
50 Issues

in this issue

3 min
in brief

Asia • “India is removing the red tape and laying out the red carpet.” Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Prime Minister Narendra Modi promised India would become a $5 trillion economy by 2025. ● Rocket Lab, a New Zealand-based startup, launched … literally. The company’s Electron rocket slung into orbit three small satellites, which would otherwise have had to hitch rides on larger rockets. ● Turkish soldiers streamed into Northern Syria, attacking Kurdish forces backed by the U.S. Having encouraged the Kurds to help defeat Islamic State, U.S. diplomats urged Turkey to stand down. ● Vietnam sentenced Trinh Xuan Thanh, an executive at its state-owned oil company, to life in prison for corruption. His trial was part of a crackdown that meted out long prison terms to several senior company officials. Europe ● The Presidents…

6 min
the new world order of energy will be american

The last time U.S. drillers pumped 10 million barrels of crude a day, Richard Nixon was in the White House. The first oil crisis hadn’t yet scared Americans into buying Toyotas, and fracking was an experimental technique a handful of engineers were trying, with meager success, to popularize. It was 1970, and oil sold for $1.80 a barrel. Almost five decades later, with oil hovering near $65 a barrel, daily U.S. crude output is about to hit the eight-digit mark again. It’s a significant milestone on the way to fulfilling a dream that a generation ago seemed far-fetched: By the end of the year, the U.S. may well be the world’s biggest oil producer. With that, America takes a big step towards energy independence. The U.S. crowing from the top of a…

2 min
more assaults on obamacare

The year ahead looks to be dangerous for health-care security in the U.S., as the Trump administration continues to sabotage the law Congress couldn’t repeal. New proposals would let many more healthy Americans drop their Obamacare coverage—raising costs for the unhealthy and risks for everyone, sick or well. First, the administration intends to expand and deregulate association health plans. Under current law, such plans, sold to trade and professional associations, must cover “essential health benefits” such as hospitalization, maternity care, and prescription drugs. Trump wants to increase enrollment in these plans and end the restriction on benefits. This would let insurers create cheap, weak-coverage plans and market them to people who expect no big health-care expenses. Second, the administration wants the duration of unregulated short-term policies to grow from three months…

7 min
endo’s law: if it can go wrong it will

Opioids. Vaginal mesh. Testosterone. These have become some of the ugliest words in the pharmaceutical industry, telegraphing medical treatments gone awry, in some cases leaving behind disabled customers, epic legal battles, and vast capital destruction. Some of the industry’s largest companies have been mired in lawsuits and government probes over these issues. But no company has been haunted by the drug industry’s worst nightmares as mercilessly as Endo International Plc. Just about everything that can go wrong in the world of pharma has gone wrong at Endo, which makes both branded and generic drugs. Through a dealmaking spree largely led by its former chief executive officer, the company amassed debt of more than $8 billion—five times its market capitalization. That might be tolerable for a high-growth company, but Endo faces cratering…

6 min
china’s liquor giant needs more booze

You know you’re in Maotai when you smell it. The picturesque town of about 100,000 in southwestern China is home to the world’s most valuable liquor company—and the soy sauce-like scent of the Chinese grain alcohol baijiu made by Kweichow Moutai Co. permeates the main street. But inside the liquor stores along the road, the distiller’s main brands are sold out. Lines form wherever bottles are available. The buying frenzy and resulting inventory shortages extend nationwide. Moutai baijiu’s fiery flavor and potential to appreciate in price are driving the insatiable thirst. Demand has pushed the company’s market value to more than $145 billion, well past that of British whiskey giant Diageo Plc, owner of such popular brands as Johnnie Walker and Smirnoff. The Chinese company sells each bottle of its main…

1 min

Nearly two dozen superhero shows are on the air via TV, cable, or streaming services. Unlike in movies, Disney’s Marvel hasn’t conquered rival DC Comics. ——Christopher Palmeri A Crowded Field Not all superheroes are winners. Marvel’s Inhumans launched on ABC in September with a former Game of Thrones star and big-time special effects. It was a critical and ratings flop. CW Network, with two full nights of prime time devoted to superheroes—including Black Lightning (above)—has shifted its viewers from 70 percent female to half male. While older series such as the CW’s Arrow and ABC’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. have won high praise from critics on Rotten Tomatoes, newer shows have drawn more mixed reviews. The Real Attraction Superhero shows draw a young, male audience that’s hard for advertisers to reach outside of sports programming, says the OMD…