Sony and Boeing: What Is New in the Financial World


A Call for a Sony Breakup

Someone has finally called for Sony Corp. (NYSE: SNE) to rid itself of the one division it owns that has no relationship to consumer electronics. The company's movie studio is a legacy from a time when Sony hoped to own content and the means by which it is delivered to people via consumer electronics. Other major studios are owned by large media conglomerates, which makes sense because of the huge stakes they have in programming. The idea that Sony should part with its studios is not new, but it may have renewed impetus. The New York Times reports on the call for Sony to break up:

An American hedge fund billionaire known for starting big fights has called for a breakup of the entertainment and electronic colossus Sony, according to people briefed on the matter, possibly setting off a battle that could roil Japan's famously staid corporate culture.

The call, which came Tuesday, will most likely be viewed by government officials and corporate leaders in Tokyo as a shot across the bow from Wall Street, just as Western investors begin piling into Japanese stocks.

The hedge fund manager, Daniel S. Loeb, is pressing Sony into spinning off part of its entertainment arm, which includes one of the biggest film studios in Hollywood and one of the largest music labels in the world, responsible for movies like "Skyfall" and artists like Taylor Swift.

More Dreamliners Resume Flying

Boeing Co.'s (NYSE: BA) recovery continues from the battery fire debacle that involved its 787 Dreamliner. Several airlines that fly the plane have put it back into service now that it appears that the issue has been resolved. And the FAA has blessed the Boeing fix. But Boeing still may be liable for the losses some carriers had because the 787 had to be taken out of service. Fox Business says of the resumption of 787 Dreamliner flights:

State-run Air India Ltd will resume flying its Boeing Co 787 Dreamliner passenger jets from Wednesday, Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh said on Tuesday, almost four months after the planes were grounded due to safety concerns.

Air India has six Dreamliners and has ordered 21 more. The planes have been grounded worldwide since January following incidents of overheating in the batteries providing auxiliary power. Boeing has since worked to develop new battery housings to prevent a repeat of the incidents.

Air India will start a Dreamliner domestic flight on Wednesday and will start international flights on May 22, Singh told reporters, adding that all six of its Dreamliners would be ready for flying by the end of the month. Air India would also acquire eight more Dreamliners by December, he added.

European Energy Consumption

The European Union wants to know more about energy consumption, particularly as its affects individuals who live within the region. Energy costs have risen relentlessly for most of the past several years, so these costs likely hurt consumer spending. Bloomberg reports on the call for a study of energy costs:

European Union leaders will call for a study of energy prices and costs facing households and energy-intensive industries, according to draft conclusions of their May 22 summit.

"The impact of high energy prices and costs must be addressed," according to the draft, dated May 13 and obtained by Bloomberg News. The draft says the European Commission will present their analysis of energy-price "composition and drivers" before the end of 2013 for talks in February 2014.

The 27-nation bloc's leaders also will call for EU and national measures to boost financing opportunities throughout the economy, according to the draft. It specifies trying to make more use of the European Investment Bank, in particular for energy and resource-efficiency projects.

Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Market Open Tagged: BA, featured, SNE