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On its face the deal is not particularly appealing, but it has still emerged as the world’s biggest share offering of all time. Petrobras, Brazil’s oil giant, has located lots of oil and gas, but the reserves are hundreds of kilometres offshore and several kilometres under the ocean and a thick cap of geological salt. The company needs hundreds of billions of dollars in investment funds and will run cash shortfalls for years. Worst of all, the government insists on keeping a controlling stake and is not even paying cash for its shares.

Nevertheless, the positive aspects of the deal have won out, for now, as Petrobras priced a giant rights issue on September 23rd.

Read more at Financial Services Briefing: “Petrobras engineers a gusher” (September 24th)