• Pen to paper: Time Inc. is expecting to receive takeover bids this week, for either all or part of its magazine publishing empire. In preparation of a possible sale, the company recently approved a new compensation plan that basically guarantees bonuses and extends severance to top executives if they get fired after a change of control. Such guarantees are not extended to editors of the company's nearly two dozen titles, nor to any of their reporters, researchers or assistants. Also out of luck are salespeople, designers, technologists, back-office administrators, security guards or anyone else who could well receive a pink slip in the event of a sale.
Time Inc. is certainly not the only company to make such changes to exec comp in the midst of an auction, but that doesn't make it any less greedy or inconsistent. And since I have a personal interest in this one (Dan Primack: senior editor at Fortune 2010-2016), I've written an open letter to the company's board. Read it here.
• Debt data: American companies have issued nearly twice as much high-yield debt (i.e., junk bonds) so far in 2017 than they had at the same point in 2016, according to Thomson Reuters. But the 96% U.S. boost is actually well below the 195% increase in worldwide high-yield issuance, driven by whopping bumps in non-Japan Asia (+627%) and Europe (+433%).
High-yield issuance actually declined for the past four years, but the early 2017 boost seems partially reflective of a global increase in leveraged buyouts. For example, while overall U.S. M&A activity is flat from 2016, private equity deals for U.S. targets are up 71%. Private equity is up 45% in Europe, even though overall M&A is down 10%. The big exception to this trend in non-Japan Asia, where private equity activity is actually down 31% from 2016. One explanation for that region's junk bond binge is buyside demand for diversification, particularly at a time when asset manager inflows are being buoyed by record-high equity markets. Within the Asia number, Chinese issuers have a 56.5% market share.
• Slump pricing: Uber's PR pros must feel a bit like rodeo clowns right now. They know something bad is coming most every day, but they just don't know from which direction or quite how much it will hurt. Kia has a quick roundup of its most recent terrible, horrible, no good, very bad week.
There also was a weekend report from The Information that Uber CEO Travis Kalanick is seeking to hire an official "second in command," which isn't anything he's ever really had. I've also seen some Twitterati suggestions that Kalanick could get canned, but don't hold your breath. Not only because of voting power dynamics, but because (almost) everyone I talk to on Uber's investing side believes that Kalanick is both Uber's greatest asset and its greatest liability. The former had helped drive a $70 billion valuation, and they believe the latter can be somewhat mitigated going forward.
• Correction: On Friday I mentioned that Snap CEO Evan Spiegel didn't do any post-listing interviews. That was incorrect. He and Snap co-founder Bobby Murphy did an exclusive with the LA Times. From Spiegel:
"We built our business on creativity. And we're going to have to go through an education process for the next five years to explain to people how our users and that creativity creates value."
• Recommended reading: "Merit-based" immigration may complicate tech's relationship with Trump, by Kim Hart.
• Drop a dime: If you want to provide share scoop with me, there are lots of available avenues: