United States

Thirteen Brazilian and international banks filed a lawsuit in New York on Tuesday against two units of ailing engineering and oil conglomerate Grupo Schahin to recover $371 million in overdue principal and interest on loans, Reuters reported. The lawsuit comes weeks after Schahin sought for protection from creditors in Brazil and the United States, and fired 2,500 workers as a corruption scandal at key client Petróleo Brasileiro SA hampered its efforts to refinance up to 6.5 billion reais ($2.1 billion) in debt.
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The Canadian and U.S. judges charged with dividing the $7.3 billion from the liquidation of Nortel Networks rejected proposals from former regional businesses and opted for a pro rata split of the money in long-awaited rulings on Tuesday, Reuters reported. Judges on the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Delaware and Ontario Superior Court of Justice held an unprecedented joint cross-border trial on the dispute, with the courtrooms linked by video. The legal battle has raged for years through numerous courts, chewing up more than $1 billion in fees for lawyers and other advisors.
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U.S. Steel was able to extend its creditor protection deadline to the fall, although previous court filings suggest the restructuring will go beyond the new September deadline, CBC.ca reported. This is the third extension of U.S. Steel Canada's (USSC) bankruptcy protection for its operations north of the border in Hamilton and Nanticoke. The uncontested extension was signed by Superior Court Justice Herman Wilton-Siegel Thursday.
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U.S. Steel has issued a thinly veiled threat to shut down parts of its Canadian operations if its claim to be owed $2.2 billion by its struggling Canadian arm is not allowed, The Hamilton Spectator reported. In court documents filed this week, the company says objections to its claims threaten to slow the restructuring process it says must be complete by mid-summer if it is to avoid losing its critical auto contracts. At issue are objections by the Ontario government, the United Steelworkers, retirees and a former Stelco president to the parent company's claims.
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Barclays Plc is entitled to $4 billion in assets stemming from the Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. collapse, as the U.S. Supreme Court rejected an appeal from the bankruptcy trustee for the firm’s brokerage business, Bloomberg News reported. The justices left intact a federal appeals court ruling that said Barclays acquired the assets as part of a hastily drafted purchase agreement in September 2008. Barclays bought most of Lehman’s North American brokerage assets in that deal. The trustee, James Giddens, sought to recoup the money, most of which is already in Barclays’ possession.
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Art work and office buildings are being sold by bankruptcy receivers for the Espirito Santo group of companies that collapsed last year amid fraud allegations, The Wall Street Journal reported. The 36-story Espírito Santo Plaza in Miami went on the block in April after Luxembourg officials managing the bankrupt companies hired Florida’s EXAN Capital to manage the sale. The office and condominium tower, located in Miami’s Brickell Avenue financial district, is expected to fetch at least $120 million based on market prices.
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Rizzo Bottiglieri de Carlini Armatori SpA, a marine freight transportation services provider, moved to shield its U.S. assets by filing a bankruptcy petition in Texas after seeking protection from creditors in Italy, Bloomberg News reported. The company filed under Chapter 15 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, which would prevent creditors from taking action against the company’s U.S.-based assets while it reorganizes under Italian law. The company listed assets and debt of more than $500 million each in court documents filed Wednesday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Houston.
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Former Anglo Irish Bank chief executive David Drumm has made an emergency request to a US court seeking more time to file legal papers arguing why it should overturn a ruling blocking a write-off of his debts, the Irish Times reported. Mr Drumm asked for the deadline to submit his appeal brief, due this week, to the Massachusetts District Court to be put back to April 13th arguing that he should be given the time because he has hired a new lawyer. The former banker also wants permission from the court to increase the page limit for the brief to 40 pages, or 19,000 words.
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The nasty battle between Argentina and a group of New York hedge funds has claimed another victim: Citigroup. The bank said on Tuesday that it would shut its custody business in Argentina after a federal judge in New York last week rejected its request to lift an order that prevented the bank from making interest payments to investors holding $2.3 billion in Argentine notes, the International New York Times DealBook blog reported.
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Australia's IFM Investors said on Thursday it had agreed to pay $5.73 billion to buy the bankrupt operator of a major U.S. toll road, making its biggest overseas investment, Reuters reported. IFM Investors, which is owned by 30 Australian pension funds and manages $43 billion, said the purchase of ITR Concession Co LLC gave its investors access to core infrastructure in the world's largest capital market.
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