Apollo, Ares and Oaktree Team Up on Initiative to Lure Black Talent

Jun 15, 2021

First Read

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Hits & Takes
John Lothian & JLN Staff

Longtime industry executive K. James Kleinops has passed away, his son Jeffrey shared on Facebook. Condolences to his friends and family. — Facebook

JLN is working on its MarketsWiki Education World of Opportunity program for industry interns and younger employees. We are targeting the middle of the third week in July, though we have not selected a specific date yet. The event will be virtual and just an hour long, but will also feature additional videos for the attendees to watch later at their convenience. Ed Tilly, chairman and CEO of Cboe Global Markets, will be the headliner of the live event in a Q&A session with me. We are confirming the other parts of the event before announcing the date. If you have some interest in the event for your interns, please email me and we will send you more information when it is available.

The NFA Board Update from its May 2021 meeting is out and features a tribute to longtime board member and chairman of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, Jack Sandner. Sandner was a member of the NFA board for 35 years. The video style has not returned to shooting of CEO Tom Sexton or Chairperson Maureen Downs yet, but rather features an appealing montage of photos and text to tell the update story. The NFA Board Update is produced by John Lothian Productions. — NFA

Osaka Exchange, Inc. (OSE) and Tokyo Commodity Exchange, Inc. (TOOCM) will start derivatives holiday trading around September 2022 and compiled the trading scheme. OSE and TOCOM are accepting public comment regarding the matter from this website. — JPX

There were no new donations to the JLN MarketsWiki Education GoFundMe campaign yesterday. Support our efforts to preserve industry history by giving to our GoFundMe campaign.

I was downtown yesterday at my office in the CBOT Building. Activity in the building was still sparse. I had lunch at the Union League Club and it was pretty empty there too. It was a beautiful day in Chicago, so if this were normal times it would be a day when you would have skipped the office. A car parking lot attendant I have known for years says parking in the lot is still on the small side and inconsistent. I did run into some people I knew, including Pat Kenny of CQG and John Walls of ADMIS. I also ran into Paul Bauerschmidt, who is now a managing director of technology for JPMorgan.

Have a great day and stay safe and treat people the same way you want to be treated: with respect, equality and justice.~JJL


The STA’s latest “Trading Views” podcast features SEC Commissioner Caroline Crenshaw in an interview that focuses largely on environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) issues. Crenshaw describes the agency’s approach to ESG amid growing investor demand for information about the sector. Listen to it here.~SC


Cboe Global Markets Announces New Community Engagement Program, Cboe Empowers
Cboe Global Markets, Inc.
Cboe Empowers to provide mentorship, scholarship and guidance to under-resourced students from elementary school to college and beyond; Program initially launched in Chicago with support from Greenwood Project, Working in the Schools
Cboe Global Markets, Inc. (Cboe: CBOE), a market operator and global trading solutions provider, today announced the creation of Cboe Empowers, a community engagement program that provides mentorship, scholarship and guidance to under-resourced students throughout their educational journey through access to Cboe’s associates, resources, work environment and other learning and experience opportunities.

***** Cboe and the CME are in a competition on who can help the Chicago community and its young people more. I am glad to see exchange competition like this.~JJL


Farmers in Australia are burning their own crops.
Rachel Pannett – Washington Post
They’re desperate to escape an epic plague infesting their hay. First came the drought. Then, the floods. Now, the mice. ‘You can’t get rid of the smell because they die in the walls’. The mice are invading homes. They’re destroying crops. They’re chewing through appliances, sofas, cars — and livelihoods.
Fighting back the plague
Colin Tink, 63, has been farming all his life and has never experienced a mouse plague like the one ravaging Australia’s eastern grain belt. Nor a drought like the one that preceded it, which turned fertile crop areas into dust bowls.
*****This is not good news.~JJL


Dreams of Working From a Beach Risk Turning Into a Tax Nightmare; With more firms offering remote work as a job perk, employees are country hopping. That could mean myriad complications when they’re filing returns.
Charlie Wells and Ivan Levingston – Bloomberg
Imagine for a second that the pandemic is over. Global travel has resumed, Covid hot-spots are a thing of the past and companies are actually keeping a promise some have been making lately: to allow remote work from anywhere in the world, at least for a few months a year.

****** Working at the beach is where one of those virtual backgrounds on Zoom works well.~JJL


Paul Tudor Jones Says Economic Orthodoxy Has Turned Upside Down
Katherine Burton – Bloomberg
Paul Tudor Jones says on CNBC inflation risk not transitory; Says he likes Bitcoin and has a defensive position in it
Paul Tudor Jones said economic orthodoxy has been turned upside down with the Federal Reserve focused on unemployment even as inflation and financial stability are growing concerns. Inflation risk isn’t transitory, the hedge fund manager said in an interview on CNBC. If the Fed says the U.S. economy is on the right path, “then I would go all in on the inflation trade, buy commodities, crypto and gold,” he said. “If they course correct, you will get a taper tantrum and a sell off in fixed income and a correction in stocks.

*****Paul, stop standing on your head when you make these pronouncements.~JJL


As downtown shows signs of life again, new questions emerge; We’ve got a long way to go, to be sure, but workers are starting to find their way back to the city’s core. That said, there are still potential stumbling blocks.
Greg Hinz – Crain’s Chicago Business
Like a grove of trees sprouting anew after a Chicago winter, something has reappeared in my office. Not leaves but colleagues here at beautiful 150 N. Michigan Ave., a new one or two almost every day now after better than a year existing in Zoom City.

****** The story said that in the middle of May there was still only 11% of occupancy of downtown offices. That is up from about 8% during the height of the pandemic.~JJL


Remote workers work longer, not more efficiently
The Economist
THE RETURN to the office is well under way, just as summer in the northern hemisphere begins. Pretty soon, people will be able to resume the habit of staring wistfully out of the window, hoping it will still be sunny at the weekend. As many workers embrace a hybrid pattern, perhaps commuting 2-3 days a week, the experiment in full-time home-working is ending. At the same time, assessments of its effectiveness are proliferating.

******How efficient are you when your dog wants to go for a walk? Yesterday I took a business call while I was walking mine.~JJL


Monday’s Top Three
Our top story on Monday was the CME Group’s Amendments to and Delisting of Certain CME and CBOT Products in Connection with the Elimination of Most CME and All CBOT Open Outcry Trading Pits and Related Frequently Asked Questions for Members and Member Firms. Second was the YouTube video clip of Ned Beatty’s speech from the movie “Network,” written by Paddy Chayefsky, about how “The world is a business, Mr. Beale.” Third was U.S. regulators urge financial firms to quickly ditch Libor rate benchmarks, from Yahoo Finance.


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Lead Stories

Apollo, Ares and Oaktree Team Up on Initiative to Lure Black Talent; Firms will each commit $3 million yearly over a decade to fund program with HBCUs
Miriam Gottfried – WSJ
Three investment firms are launching a joint initiative aimed at attracting more Black talent to their industry, which has struggled to do so despite numerous attempts over the years. Apollo Global Management Inc., APO -0.48% Ares Management Corp. ARES -1.11% and Oaktree Capital Management LP are committing a total of $90 million over 10 years toward the effort, which involves partnering with historically Black colleges and universities, or HBCUs, executives from the firms said.

Big Banks Required to Fill Board Seats With Women Under ECB Proposal; Top European bank regulator would be able to block board appointments based on candidate’s gender
Patricia Kowsmann – WSJ
The European Central Bank wants to include gender diversity as a criteria to approve bank board members and executives, a step that would put further pressure on a sector where the vast majority of senior posts are still held by men.

Renee Jones to Join SEC as Director of Corporation Finance; John Coates Named SEC General Counsel
The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that Renee Jones has been appointed Director of the Division of Corporation Finance. John Coates, the Division’s current Acting Director, has been named SEC General Counsel. Both appointments are effective June 21, 2021.

SEC Picks Professor Who Criticized Startup ‘Unicorns’ as Top Corporate Regulator; Renee Jones of Boston College will oversee unit regulating public company disclosures, including IPO filings
Dave Michaels – WSJ
The Securities and Exchange Commission said it had hired Renee Jones, a Boston College law professor, as its top staff regulator of public companies. Ms. Jones will oversee a division of more than 400 lawyers and accountants that draft rules for companies raising capital and disclosing material news and events to shareholders. The division has a leading role in drafting a planned rule proposal that would require public companies to reveal more about the risks and impacts of climate change on their business

Fed urged to aid money market funds as negative rates loom; Pressure in short-term debt markets is on US monetary policy meeting agenda
Michael Mackenzie and Colby Smith – FT
A growing chorus of investors is urging the Federal Reserve to act to prevent negative rates taking hold in parts of the US financial markets, as a wall of cash drives down yields on short-term debt and threatens to overwhelm the $4tn money market fund industry

Barely Hired at Morgan Stanley, Trading Savior Nears CEO’s Perch
Sridhar Natarajan and Amanda L Gordon – Bloomberg
Ted Pick has waged bank’s rivalry with Goldman like none other; He’s a company lifer, and tales of his colorful ascent abound
The story at Morgan Stanley goes like this: Gary Cohn, then president of arch-rival Goldman Sachs, boasted he wanted to crush Morgan Stanley like a cockroach. When Ted Pick heard that, he erupted. In one of his signature blue-streaked tirades, he ordered troops on his Morgan Stanley trading floor to stick it to Goldman.

Wall Street’s Return-to-Office Gulf Exposed by Goldman, Citi
Jennifer Surane – Bloomberg
Goldman Sachs welcomed all staff back to its office today; Three minutes away, Citigroup has vowed hybrid approach
It’s a short stroll from Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s global headquarters to Citigroup Inc.’s, but when it comes to reopening after the pandemic, the two Manhattan towers might as well be thousands of miles apart.

Morgan Stanley chief talks tough on return to the office; ‘If you can go into a restaurant in New York City, you can come into the office,’ says Gorman
Alyson Velati – FT
Morgan Stanley chief executive James Gorman sent a tough message to New York-based employees who do not want to return to the office, arguing that if they are comfortable dining out in the city, then they should feel safe working at the bank’s headquarters.

People Are Returning to Restaurants, Stores and Hotels. But Not Yet the Office; Office towers and businesses around them are hurting; some people are used to working from home
Peter Grant – Reuters
Office towers and nearby businesses in central business districts are missing out on the strong economic recovery, largely because the rise in vaccinations and easing of mask restrictions haven’t propelled most employees back to work.

Ken Griffin Not Willing To Share His Secrets Even To Punish Those Who (Allegedly) Stole Them; If GSA Capital can’t unsee Citadel’s code, can a judge?
Jon Shazarjun – Dealbreaker.com
Everyone knows Ken Griffin is a bit prickly about unauthorized people laying eyes on his precious, lucrative algorithms and high-frequency trading code. GSA Capital Partners certainly knows this, either because it allegedly went out of its way to get its eyes on those secrets without Griffin and, according to Citadel Securities, shame-facedly shredded its copies thereof at Citadel’s insistence, or at the latest when Griffin sued it for allegedly doing so.

Ex-Gain Capital CEO pays $1M for bankrupt Money.Net assets; Stevens may plan to give Money.Net a new lease of life targeting wealth management clients.
Max Bowie – Waters Technology
Glenn Stevens, the former CEO of Bedminster, NJ-based broker Gain Capital, has acquired the assets of Money.Net, the budget data workstation provider that recently filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection, for just over $1 million. The deal, which closed at the end of May, includes Money.Net’s software platform and intellectual property, as well as contracts with suppliers and existing clients. Under the arrangement, Stevens assumes the obligation to pay outstanding amounts owed to companies

Hedge funds expect to hold 7% of assets in crypto within five years; Forecast could equate to about $312bn in digital currencies across the industry, survey finds
Laurence Fletcher – FT
Hedge funds plan to significantly increase their exposure to cryptocurrencies by 2026, a new survey shows, in a major vote of confidence for digital assets after recent large price falls and plans for punitive new capital rules. A survey of 100 hedge fund chief financial officers globally, conducted by fund administrator Intertrust, found that executives expect to hold an average of 7.2 per cent of their assets in cryptocurrencies in five years’ time.

Billionaire’s Hedge Fund Offers Hefty Pay to Combat Talent Squeeze
Nishant Kumar – Bloomberg
Colin Lancaster and Mitesh Parikh will start macro trading; The pair are hiring a dozen traders for their new venture
After the best year for hedge funds in a decade, promising traders can seek a place at the many major firms on a hiring spree or strike out on their own to seize on investor appetite. But a push by Schonfeld Strategic Advisors is a prominent example of a lucrative third option. The firm is dangling a hefty cut of profits as part of a foray into macro trading, taking a page out of the books of industry giants Citadel and Millennium Management.

Trading Stocks Is Finally Free in Japan, If You’re Under 25
Shoko Oda – Bloomberg
Brokerages still face a battle to overcome market crash legacy; Most wealth held in cash despite decades of sub 1% rates
Japanese brokerages are amping up the speed on the free stock-trading revolution – though only the young need apply. Two of the country’s major online brokerages recently announced they would virtually eliminate commission fees for stock trading regardless of account balance for users between 20 and 25 years old.

Bitcoin Is Still Being Called a Bubble After May’s 35% Crash
Ksenia Galouchko – Bloomberg
Four in five managers say price of digital token is inflated; The survey shows doubts remain on Wall Street about crypto
The view that Bitcoin is a hallmark of speculative excess and froth is still going strong, even after last month’s 35% plunge. About 80% of fund managers surveyed by Bank of America Corp. called the market a bubble, up from 75% in May. The poll, which captures the view of 207 investors with $645 billion in assets, said “long Bitcoin” is the second-most crowded trade after commodities.

World’s Most Hawkish Central Banker Is Losing Inflation War
Maria Eloisa Capurro – Bloomberg
Rising CPI expectations pose challenge to Roberto Campos Neto; Central bank should reconsider its language, economists say
No central banker in the world is taking on inflation this year like Roberto Campos Neto. In March, the head of Brazil’s central bank shocked traders in Sao Paulo with a bigger-than-expected interest rate hike — 75 basis points. It was a classic central banking gambit, executed by the grandson of one of Brazil’s pre-eminent economic minds: Unleash a great show of force from the outset to prove you’re a true inflation fighter, and you’ll quickly drive down investors’ inflation expectations and possibly ease the need for additional hikes.

Lumber Prices Are Falling Fast, Turning Hoarders Into Sellers; Prices have dropped from record highs, spurred by the economic reopening and potentially pointing to an eventual return to normalcy
Ryan Dezember – WSJ
Futures for July delivery ended Monday at $996.20 per thousand board feet, down 42% from the record of $1,711.20 reached in early May. Futures have declined 14 of the past 15 trading days, the last two by the most allowed by exchange rules.

Coronavirus infections dropping where people are vaccinated, rising where they are not, Post analysis finds
Dan Keating, Naema Ahmed, Fenit Nirappil, Isaac Stanley-Becker and Lenny Bernstein – Washington Post
States with higher vaccination rates now have markedly fewer coronavirus cases, as infections are dropping in places where most residents have been immunized and are rising in many places people have not, a Washington Post analysis has found.

Treasury Announces Key Staff Appointments
United States Department of the Treasury
Today, the United States Department of the Treasury announced three key additions to Treasury staff. These distinguished and diverse individuals join Treasury prepared to deliver results for the American people.


Many Post-Covid Patients Are Experiencing New Medical Problems, Study Finds; An analysis of health insurance records of almost 2 million coronavirus patients found new issues in nearly a quarter — including those whose Covid infection was mild or asymptomatic.
Pam Belluck – NY Times
Hundreds of thousands of Americans have sought medical care for post-Covid health problems that they had not been diagnosed with before becoming infected with the coronavirus, according to the largest study to date of long-term symptoms in Covid-19 patients.

Rampant Variant Derails U.K.’s Plan to Lift Virus Measures
Emily Ashton and Alex Morales – Bloomberg
Easing of restrictions postponed in England by four weeks; Delta variant now accounts for nine in 10 cases in U.K.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson pushed back his plan to lift coronavirus restrictions by four weeks as a more infectious variant spreads rapidly across the U.K., threatening to undermine the country’s effort to vaccinate its way out of the pandemic.

Boris Johnson Delays End of England Covid Lockdown as Cases Surge
Emily Ashton, Alex Morales, and Joe Mayes – Bloomberg
Says keeping rules to July 19 to prevent ‘thousands’ of deaths; Weddings and wakes will have no limits on guests after June 21
Prime Minister Boris Johnson pushed back his plan to lift England’s coronavirus restrictions for at least another four weeks to try to prevent “thousands” more deaths and a surge in hospitalizations.

Astra’s Antibody Fails to Prevent Covid-19 Symptoms in Study
Suzi Ring – Bloomberg
Drug was only 33% effective at preventing symptomatic disease; Astra has five more trials looking at other uses for cocktail
AstraZeneca Plc’s antibody cocktail was only 33% effective at preventing Covid-19 symptoms in people who had been exposed to the virus, failing a study that was key to the drugmaker’s pandemic push.

Louisiana Grandmother Fighting Pollution in ‘Cancer Alley’ Wins Green Nobel Prize; Sharon Lavigne is going head-to-head with multi-billion dollar chemical plants in her longtime home of St. James Parish.
Linda Poon – Bloomberg
At the St. James Parish council meetings, Sharon Lavigne is a familiar face. She’s become a fixture since 2018, fighting multi-billion dollar petrochemical plants that threaten to move into her hometown, located along Louisiana’s “Cancer Alley.”

Governments need ‘portfolio of vaccines’ to beat Covid, says EMA head; Emer Cooke stressed that depending too heavily on a single shot could be self-defeating
Donato Paolo Mancini – FT
Governments should work with a mix of different coronavirus vaccines to stand the best chance of ending the pandemic, the head of the European drugs regulator said, warning that depending too heavily on a single shot or type of vaccine could be self-defeating.

Explainer: California reopens, mostly, on Tuesday
Jane Lee – Reuters
California says it is opening up from COVID-19 restrictions on Tuesday, but tech companies and other offices are not changing as fast as Disneyland, gyms and stores. Here is what’s changing for California offices, and what’s not.

AstraZeneca Covid-19 Antibody Treatment Suffers Setback; Drug’s efficacy as post-infection therapy falls short in clinical trial, but potential preventative use is still undergoing testing
Jenny Strasburg – WSJ
AstraZeneca AZN -0.02% PLC’s coronavirus antibody treatment failed in late-stage clinical trials to achieve its primary goal of preventing symptomatic Covid-19 in people recently exposed to the virus, the latest disappointment in a broader search for reliable post-infection therapies. A single dose of the AZD7442 long-acting antibody treatment wasn’t statistically more effective than a placebo in preventing symptomatic Covid-19 in the trial of 1,121 people in the U.K. and U.S., AstraZeneca said Tuesday. The antibody treatment is separate from AstraZeneca’s widely used Covid-19 vaccine developed in partnership with the University of Oxford.

Exchanges, OTC and Clearing

Small Exchange to launch first US cannabis future
Luke Jeffs – FOW
Small Exchange, the growing Chicago-based market, has announced plans to launch the first US cannabis futures contract. The exchange, which launched in June last year and offers a range of small futures contracts on equity indices, foreign exchange, US treasuries, metals and crude oil, said it will launch the Small Cannabis contract on June 21.

ICE Mortgage Technology Snaps Up eVault Technology from DocMagic
Ben Mahaney – Yahoo Finance
Intercontinental Exchange Inc. (ICE) has revealed that ICE Mortgage Technology has acquired technology from DocMagic, Inc, which will utilize an eVault solution for the secure storage of digital mortgages and notes. Shares of the leading operator of global exchanges, clearing houses, data, and listing services, have gained 20.2% over the past year.

Greentech namR lists on Euronext Growth Paris
EUR8 million raised; Market capitalisation of EUR38.2 million; 17th admission on Euronext Paris this year
Euronext today congratulates namR, a greentech specialising in data intelligence for the ecological transition, on its listing on Euronext Growth Paris (ticker code: ALNMR).

European benchmark index futures roll update
As we have stepped into the final week of futures roll period, we would like to show statistics of the current June roll with a focus on Benchmark Index Futures. Below, every graph contains a solid line representing the back month open interest ratio to the total open interest. Dashed line shows a historical mean of 5 recent rolls and gray bandwidths depict one standard deviation from the historical mean levels.

Revised SPAN Combined Commodity Code – New Product Summary: Initial Listing of the Options on E-mini Standard and Poor’s 500 Stock Price Index Futures – Quarterly PM (European-Style) Contract
CME Group
Initial Listing of the Options on E-mini Standard and Poor’s 500 Stock Price Index Futures – Quarterly PM (European-Style) Contract

Performance Bond Requirements: Energy – Effective June 15, 2021
CME Group
As per the normal review of market volatility to ensure adequate collateral coverage, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc., Clearing House Risk Management staff approved the performance bond requirements for the following products listed in the advisory at the link below.
The rates will be effective after the close of business on 6/15/2021.

Product Modification Summary: Amendments to and Delisting of Certain CME and CBOT Products in Connection with the Elimination of Most CME and All CBOT Open Outcry Trading Pits – Effective June 13, 2021
CME Group
Amendments to and Delisting of Certain CME and CBOT Products in Connection with the Elimination of Most CME and All CBOT Open Outcry Trading Pits.

June 2021 Final Foreign Currency Settlement Prices
CME Group
Please find attached June 2021 Final Foreign Currency Settlement Prices.

SGX brings Green, Social and Sustainability bond data in Asia Pacific to global investors
Singapore Exchange (SGX), Asia’s leading international fixed income marketplace, is enabling bond issuers in Asia Pacific to showcase their Green, Social and Sustainability (GSS) bonds to global investors through its partnership with the Nasdaq Sustainable Bond Network.

Introduction of Derivatives Holiday Trading
Osaka Exchange, Inc. (OSE) and Tokyo Commodity Exchange, Inc. (TOOCM) will start derivatives holiday trading around September 2022 and compiled the trading scheme. OSE and TOCOM are accepting public comment regarding this matter from this Web site.

BME And BBF FinTech Launch The First International Edition Of Hack & Disrupt!, The First FinTech And InsurTech Hackathon
On 25, 26 and 27 June, Bilbao will host the “Hack & Disrupt!” event, the first hackathon focused on the international fintech and insurtech sector that focusses on sustainable finance. Over two days the gathering will bring together companies, entrepreneurs and startups to solve global technological challenges as a team. BME and BBF Fintech are the organisers of this event, which is sponsored by BBK, Plaza Financiera Bilbao and SIX’s startup accelerator, F10.


Broadridge Launches DLT Repo platform to Execute First Bilateral Repo Trades Using Smart Contracts
Broadridge Financial Solutions, Inc.
Broadridge Financial Solutions, Inc. (NYSE:BR), a global Fintech leader, today announced the successful go-live of its transformative distributed ledger repo (DLR) platform. Early participants of the blockchain-enabled platform are realizing significant and immediate benefits of reduced risk, operational costs and enhanced liquidity, while also accelerating their digitization journey. The launch builds on the success of multiple pilots with sell-side and buy-side firms.

Broadridge looks to transform repo trading with launch of new blockchain-based platform; The new platform utilises smart contracts and distributed ledger technology, a move that could potentially transform the repo market.
Joe Parsons – The Trade
Broadridge has gone live with a new trading platform based on distributed ledger technology (DLT) which it believes will transform the repo market for banks and investment firms.

JPMorgan employees reportedly ‘panicking’ over orders to save text messages
Lydia Moynihan – NY Post
JPMorgan, others to extend credit to customers without credit scores: report
Bankers at JPMorgan are “panicking” over recent orders from the megabank to save all of their work-related text messages — even if they were tapped out on personal devices and apps.

Fintech’s deal for tiny Utah bank may rile consumer advocates
Polo Rocha – American Banker
The parent company of the high-cost digital lender CreditNinja has agreed to purchase a tiny Utah-based bank in a deal that may spark greater opposition than similar recent deals by other fintechs.
KMD Partners said that it has a deal to purchase Salt Lake City-based Liberty Bank, which has only $11.7 million in assets. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Fintech firm Wise plans to launch London listing this week – Sky News
British fintech firm Wise is planning to launch a direct listing on the London Stock Exchange as soon as this week, Sky News reported on Tuesday, citing sources.

BoE’s Bailey promises ‘tough love’ for fintech firms
Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey said he wanted to ensure that financial innovation, especially in the field of cryptocurrencies, did not undermine broader goals such as financial stability.

How contrarian hires and a pitch deck started Nubank’s $30 billion fintech empire
Marcella McCarthy – TechCrunch
For most startups, the hardest early challenge is identifying a market and a product to serve it. That wasn’t the case for Nubank CEO David Velez, who understood the massive potential for success if he could break into Latin America’s most valuable economy with even a moderately modern banking offering.
Instead, the challenge was how to rebuild the concept of a bank in a country where banking is widely hated, all while the incumbents heavily entrenched with the state worked to block every move.


Hackers Target Videogame Publishers for Ransom, Source Code; Cyberattacks struck at least three large publishers in the past year
James Rundle – WSJ
Gamers have struggled for years with hackers who cheat and take over accounts. Now, videogame studios are coming under serious attack, prompting them to step up their cyber defenses.

Hackers Thrive in Putin’s Russia as U.S. Seeks New Strategy
Michael Riley – Bloomberg
In just the past three months, criminal hackers tied to Russia have used ransomware attacks to paralyze a key oil pipeline company and cripple one of the world’s largest meat producers. The neighborly relationships some of these hackers have with Vladimir Putin’s government make it extremely difficult for the U.S. to pursue them, an arrangement with clear appeal to the Russian president. “For Putin, it’s a proxy force,” says James Lewis, senior vice president at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. “The Kremlin has criminal ties that would just be shocking to any Western capital.”

Critical entities targeted in suspected Chinese cyber spying
Alan Suderman – WP
A cyberespionage campaign blamed on China was more sweeping than previously known, with suspected state-backed hackers exploiting a device meant to boost internet security to penetrate the computers of critical U.S. entities. The hack of Pulse Connect Secure networking devices came to light in April, but its scope is only now starting to become clear. The Associated Press has learned that the hackers targeted telecommunications giant Verizon and the country’s largest water agency. News broke earlier this month that the New York City subway system, the country’s largest, was also breached.

Biden’s European tour signals a return to cyber diplomacy
Joseph Marks and Aaron Schaffer – WP
When it comes to cyber diplomacy, America is back.
That’s one of the key messages President Biden is sending as he this week jets across Europe in a series of top-level diplomatic meetings.
Those sessions have yielded a host of joint actions with allies condemning Russia’s aggression in cyberspace and its tolerance for ransomware hackers who operate in its territory. The United States and its NATO allies also endorsed a new cyber defense policy and pledged that their commitment to joint defense extends to hacking as well.


Crypto spot market structure pushing institutions towards synthetics; Risk Live: Credit risk and custody challenges with spot could push investors to derivatives and ETPs
Ben St. Clair – Risk.net
As institutional investors start to use cryptocurrencies, experts say the differences in market structure mean they’re likely to stick to synthetic exposures to the asset instead of dabbling in the spot cash market popular with retail. Spot cryptocurrency trading has remained a retail-driven market, with execution and custody happening at the exchange, but synthetic exposures through derivatives and exchange-traded products (ETPs), for example, offer a familiar product for institutions looking

Crypto Not a ‘Viable Investment,’ Goldman Sachs Says
Jamie Crawley – Coindesk
Goldman Sachs’s consumer and wealth management division has concluded that cryptocurrencies are “not a viable investment” for diversified portfolios in a new report for its clients.

Goldman Sachs to Offer Ethereum Futures and Options
Rahul N. – Be{in]Crypto
Goldman Sachs is planning to offer futures and options contracts for Ethereum (ETH), according to its head of digital assets division. The multinational investment bank, Goldman Sachs, has offered more information on its cryptocurrency services. The bank intends to offer both options and futures contracts on the market’s second-largest cryptocurrency, Ethereum (ETH). Bloomberg first reported
the news on June 14, saying that the firm had plans to move beyond bitcoin.

Bitcoin is still a bubble despite price crash: BofA survey
Brian Sozzi – Yahoo Finance
Fund managers aren’t sold that bitcoin (BTC-USD) is a screaming buy after the cryptocurrency’s rout. Eighty-one percent of fund managers polled in a new Bank of America survey say bitcoin is still a bubble despite the steep price pullback. Investors view bitcoin as the second most crowded traded (investors love bitcoin perhaps too much) behind being long commodities.

Switzerland’s Sygnum Bank Gets Into DeFi
Ian Allison – Coindesk
Switzerland’s Sygnum Bank is launching custody and trading across a range of decentralized finance (DeFi) tokens including Aave, Aragon, Curve, Maker, Synthetix, Uniswap and 1inch Network. Sygnum, which has also added banking services for the USDC stablecoin, plans to expand with a suite of yield-generating products for its clients, which include banks, hedge funds, asset managers and family offices.

Web inventor Berners-Lee to auction original code as NFT; Sotheby’s sale will be first time creator has been able to raise money directly from invention
Tim Bradshaw – FT
Sir Tim Berners-Lee is auctioning his original source code for the web in the form of a “non-fungible token”, as digital collectibles continue to fetch millions of dollars despite the recent sell-off in cryptocurrencies.

*****Here is the Reuters version of this story.~JJL

Soccer clubs embrace cryptocurrency, but fans are divided
Tom Wilson, Anna Irrera – Reuters
A growing number of major soccer clubs are launching digital coins that allow fans to vote on a variety of minor decisions as the sport faces slumping revenues caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Hedge funds expect to hold 7% of assets in crypto within five years
Laurence Fletcher – Financial Times
Hedge funds plan to significantly increase their exposure to cryptocurrencies by 2026, a new survey shows, in a major vote of confidence for digital assets after recent large price falls and plans for punitive new capital rules.
A survey of 100 hedge fund chief financial officers globally, conducted by fund administrator Intertrust, found that executives expect to hold an average of 7.2 per cent of their assets in cryptocurrencies in five years’ time.

Arbitrage strategies boost crypto hedge funds, but regulatory headaches remain
Hugh Leask – HedgeWeek
Attendees at Hedgeweek’s recent DigitalAssetsLIVE event heard how regulatory uncertainty remains a major hurdle for managers and investors alike, along with client aversion and reputational risk.
Moderating a regulatory-focused panel session during the one-day event, James Delaney, director, government affairs at the Association Investment Management Association, pointed to recent industry research suggesting that the removal or easing of such barriers would help persuade cautious market participants to become more actively involved in the crypto sector.


A Cozy Group of Elites Debate a Complex Superpower; Little unanimity emerged over China from the G-7 meeting. But that there’s any doubt about its role in the global order is a major shift.
Daniel Moss – Bloomberg
Once upon a time, the Group of Seven was a cozy bunch of elite powers making the world’s most important decisions. That ended in dramatic fashion in 2009, when it became clear that up-and-comers like China needed a seat at the table. The Group of 20 thus became the main body for deliberation. Fast forward more than a decade, and China has again commanded attention at the more intimate gathering of leaders, though not as an economic savior to be fawned over, but as a source of anxiety and division.

UK and Australia agree post-Brexit trade deal; Pact marks first big bilateral agreement negotiated by Britain since leaving the EU
Jamie Smyth and Sebastian Payne – FT
The UK and Australia have agreed the broad terms of a trade deal that is expected to become a model for Britain’s post-Brexit commercial policy.

Western unity is more important than frozen sausages; US diplomacy could be needed to dial down tensions between London and Brussels over Northern Ireland
Gideon Rachman – FT
Brexit was meant to be about the restoration of British sovereignty. But there are few starker examples of loss of sovereignty than being unable to trade within your own country without filling in a customs declaration.

Restoring trust in lobbyists and the lobbied; Greensill affair showed tighter rules are needed for ministers and civil servants
The editorial board – FT
The Greensill affair is the biggest UK lobbying scandal in a generation. Since the Financial Times revealed that David Cameron lobbied the government last year on behalf of the now defunct finance company, it has emerged that the ex-premier peppered ministers and officials with 56 calls, texts or emails. Lord Jonathan Evans, chair of the Committee on Standards in Public Life, has made sensible proposals to police better the “revolving door” between the public and private sectors. But more reforms will be needed to achieve the transparency required.

FBI warns that QAnon followers could engage in ‘real-world violence’
Mark Hosenball – Reuters
The FBI has warned that followers of the QAnon conspiracy theory could again engage in violence against political opponents out of frustration that the theory’s predictions have not come true. Believers in the conspiracy theory – which casts former President Donald Trump as a savior figure and elite Democrats as a cabal of Satanist pedophiles and cannibals – played a prominent role in the deadly Jan. 6 assault on the Capitol.


ISDA Publishes First Digital Definitions for Interest Rate Derivatives
The International Swaps and Derivatives Association, Inc. (ISDA) has today published an updated and enhanced version of its landmark definitional booklet for interest rate derivatives, marking a big step in the shift to digital documentation.

U.S. SEC names new head of corporation finance, general counsel
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Monday named a new chief to lead its unit tasked with overseeing public company disclosures, a high-profile role as the agency moves to address rising calls for greater transparency from companies about environmental, social and governance issues.

SEC Gets a New Leader for Unit That Reviews SPACS, Climate Rules
Ben Bain – Bloomberg
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Gary Gensler’s leadership team is taking shape with law professor Renee Jones being tapped to run the unit that reviews blank-check companies and will work on rules for corporations’ climate disclosures.

SEC’s partisan divide on display as Republican commissioners object to Gensler plan to overturn Trump-era rules
Chris Matthews – Marketwatch
The Securities and Exchange Commission’s partisan divide appears to be widening after the regulator’s two Republicans commissioners issued a strong statement in opposition to Democratic Chairman Gary Gensler’s regulatory agenda for the coming year.

NFA Board Update—May 2021 Meeting

South Florida man used his real estate company to steal $1.1 million, the SEC charges
David J. Neal – Reuters
Two South Florida men have agreed to pay what’s likely to be millions of dollars after the Securities and Exchange Commission charged them as cooking up a $2.4 million South Florida white collar crime entree: real estate fraud with Ponzi scheme seasoning.

Japan’s FSA disappointed by Archegos global fallout
The head of Japan’s financial watchdog said he was disappointed by the global fallout from the collapse of investment fund Archegos Capital Management despite past regulatory reforms.

U.S. financial executive dies by suicide as firm faces fraud claims
Lawrence Delevingne – Reuters
The co-founder of a Florida financial firm facing investor lawsuits alleging securities fraud has died by suicide, and a spokesperson on Monday denied wrongdoing, saying the death was not connected to a class action lawsuit filed last week.

SEC Considers Changes to Trump-Era Rules; The SEC said it would look at amending rules related to its whistleblower award program and an anticorruption provision passed last year over opposition by its Democratic members
Dylan Tokar – WSJ
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission said it would consider changes to regulations passed under the Trump administration, a move that drew criticism from its Republican commissioners.

ASIC releases guidance on ongoing fee arrangements
ASIC has today released an information sheet (INFO 256) on ongoing fee arrangements to provide greater clarity to financial advisers and advice licensees on their obligations when providing personal advice to retail clients.

SEC Charges Issuer With Cybersecurity Disclosure Controls Failures
The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced settled charges against real estate settlement services company First American Financial Corporation for disclosure controls and procedures violations related to a cybersecurity vulnerability that exposed sensitive customer information.

SEC Awards Approximately $3 Million to Two Whistleblowers
The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced an aggregate award of approximately $3 million to two whistleblowers whose information and assistance led to a successful SEC enforcement action. The whistleblowers separately and independently provided SEC staff with valuable information and ongoing assistance, which included participating in multiple interviews with the staff and providing helpful documents.

Moving Forward or Falling Back? Statement on Chair Gensler’s Regulatory Agenda
Commissioner Hester Peirce, Commissioner Elad L. Roisman – SEC
Last Friday, the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs released the Spring 2021 Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Action (“Agenda”), which includes the SEC Chair’s Agenda.[1] While there are important and timely items on the list, including rules related to transfer agents and government securities alternative trading systems, the Agenda is missing some other important rulemakings, including rules to provide clarity for digital assets, allow companies to compensate gig workers with equity, and revisit proxy plumbing. Perhaps the absence of these rules is attributable to the regrettable decision to spend our scarce resources to undo a number of rules the Commission just adopted.

Michael Findlay appointed Chair of the FCA’s Markets Practitioner Panel
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has appointed Non-Executive Chair of the London Stock Exchange (LSE) plc Michael Findlay, as the Chair of its independent Markets Practitioner Panel.

Joint Forum of Financial Market Regulators engages with industry and investor groups on investment fee transparency
The Joint Forum of Financial Market Regulators (Joint Forum) held its annual meeting on June 10, 2021. The Joint Forum brings together members of the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA), the Canadian Council of Insurance Regulators (CCIR), the Canadian Association of Pension Supervisory Authorities (CAPSA) and representatives from the Canadian Insurance Services Regulatory Organizations (CISRO), as well as from the Mortgage Broker Regulators’ Council of Canada (MBRCC).

Investing and Trading

This Is the Only Inflation Tracker You Will Ever Need; All your panic-soothing or -stoking data, in one convenient place.
Mark Gongloff – Bloomberg
Some worries are better suited for a dashboard solution than others. Will your car make it through this road trip? There’s a dashboard for that. Is there an afterlife? No dashboard. One worry on a lot of people’s minds these days is inflation. Not enough to actually bet money on it in financial markets in significant numbers, but still — very worried! Fortunately, this issue is practically tailor-made for a dashboard. And now John Authers, in concert with graphics sorcerer Elaine He, has put together a colorful, intuitive, self-updating dashboard of 35 different inflation measures, to help you gauge just how panicked you should be on any given day about inflation.

Corsair rockets up 30% in early trading as Wall Street Bets finds its latest meme stock
Daniel Howley – Yahoo Finance
The meme stock craze has found its latest target: video game hardware maker Corsair (CRSR). The company’s stock was up 31% when the market opened on Monday to $40.70, its highest price since late February, as mentions of the company on Wall Street Bets’ (WSB) Reddit pages have exploded.

World’s Bubbliest Housing Markets Flash 2008 Style Warnings
Enda Curran – Bloomberg
Real estate prices around the world are flashing the kind of bubble warnings that haven’t been seen since the run up to the 2008 financial crisis, according to Bloomberg Economics. New Zealand, Canada and Sweden rank as the world’s frothiest housing markets, based on the key indicators used in the Bloomberg Economics dashboard. The U.K. and the U.S. are also near the top of the risk rankings.

Lordstown Mess Shows Short Sellers Aren’t All Bad; Short sellers are an unfairly maligned bunch. The information they uncover is essential to keeping markets efficient.
Chris Bryant – Bloomberg
A lazy narrative has taken hold among memestock day traders that short sellers are a nefarious bunch who thoroughly deserve the losses meted out to them this year. On Monday, electric truck manufacturer Lordstown Motors Corp. delivered a timely reminder of why shareholders, be they on Wall Street or Reddit, should be glad short sellers bother to expose corporate shenanigans.

Lordstown Motors’ CEO and CFO resign following warning on lack of funds; Exits at electric vehicle start-up come less than a week after it said it may not function as ‘a going concern’ in a year’s time
George Steer – FT
The chief executive and chief financial officer of electric vehicle start-up Lordstown Motors have resigned less than a week after the company said it risked failing because of a lack of funds.

EQT Said to Consider IPO of Chemical Firm Azelis at $6 Billion Value
Myriam Balezou, Ruth David, and Swetha Gopinath – Bloomberg
Private equity firm working with adviser on listing plans; Belgium-based Azelis could go public after the summer
EQT AB is weighing an initial public offering of Azelis, a distributor of specialty chemicals and food ingredients, according to people familiar with the matter. The private equity firm is working with advisers on the listing plans, the people said, asking not to be identified discussing confidential information. Azelis could be valued at about 5 billion euros ($6 billion) in any IPO, the people said.

MicroStrategy Files to Sell as Much as $1 Billion in Shares
Dave Liedtka – Bloomberg
Software maker said earlier it closed the sale of junk bonds; CEO Michael Saylor is among biggest boosters of Bitcoin
MicroStrategy Inc. filed a “shelf” registration with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to sell as much as $1 billion in common shares for general purposes, including the purchase of more Bitcoin. The enterprise software maker announced earlier Monday that it had completed the sale of $500 million in senior secured notes that will be used to acquire the digital currency.

Fed Poised to Crawl Onto ‘Knife Edge’ to Rein In Record Largesse
Rich Miller – Bloomberg
Fed wants to normalize relations with Congress, markets; Policy makers may begin months-long talks on taper Tuesday
The Federal Reserve is inching toward the start of a long road to normalizing its relationship with the rest of Washington and Wall Street. After spending the past 15 months providing unprecedented help to the federal government and investors via trillions of dollars of bond purchases, it could start preliminary discussions about scaling back that support at a pivotal two-day policy meeting that kicks off on Tuesday.

Did FT Alphaville unwittingly fuel the GameStop madness? For r/WallStreetBets, inspiration was found in ageing pink pixels.
Paul Murphy – FT
Well, did we? Or more specifically, did an old post from Jamie Powell help bring about the deathly squeeze on Melvin Capital et al? Consider this nugget from Sheelah Kolhatkar’s fabulous tick-tock on the GameStop phenomenon in The New Yorker last month .

Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance

Gas Is So Scarce in Europe That Coal Is Making a Comeback
Vanessa Dezem, Jesper Starn and Isis Almeida – Bloomberg
Europe is so short of natural gas that the continent — usually seen as the poster child for the global fight against emissions — is turning to coal to meet electricity demand that is now back to pre-pandemic levels.

What Oil Companies Can Do to Cut the Demand for Oil; To meet global climate goals, oil majors will have to help reduce the extraction of their most important product
Akshat Rathi – Bloomberg
Increasing pressure on major oil companies has forced many to make promises to reduce the extraction of their main fossil fuel. They also warn that the result may not be a reduction in global emissions.

Exxon Won’t Be Last Shock Win for Activists; An incursion into Exxon’s boardroom is more than a win for climate campaigners. It’s a template for activism on social issues too.
Chris Hughes – Bloomberg
An activist’s success in shaking up Exxon Mobil Corp.’s board is more than a win for the environmental pillar of ESG investing. It’s a template for shareholder campaigns on social issues ranging from discrimination to the obesity epidemic. Companies can’t assume that having a strong financial performance protects them from attack.

Big Oil Must Work Harder to Slash Africa Emissions, WoodMac Says
Paul Burkhardt – Bloomberg
Persistent gas flaring, growth in LNG remain key concerns; Reducing carbon output and diversifying is now ‘unavoidable’
Oil majors need to curb emissions in sub-Saharan Africa — where almost half of their most polluting assets are located — as investors demand greater efforts to slash carbon output, according to Wood Mackenzie Ltd.

China-Backed Coal Plant Omitted Pollution Data, Group Says
Bloomberg News
Bangladesh plant report didn’t show full pollution level: CREA; Government regulator says project met national standards
A Chinese-backed coal-fired power plant in Bangladesh that’s been the site of deadly crackdowns on protests has now been accused of failing to ensure proper environmental inspections.

Britain’s biggest investor drops AIG, others from some funds over climate
Elizabeth Howcroft, Simon Jessop – Reuters
Legal & General Investment Management, Britain’s biggest asset manager, said on Tuesday it would drop four companies from a number of its funds over their “insufficient” response to the challenge of climate change, including U.S. insurer AIG (AIG.N).


Morgan Stanley Marks Office Space to Market; Also AMC calls, short squeezes, celebrity SPACs, dentists and Bitcoin.
Matt Levine – Bloomberg
Everything is seating charts
I could not possibly have enjoyed this Bloomberg profile of Morgan Stanley co-president Ted Pick more. It is hard to pick a favorite bit but I suppose I have to go with this one, from Pick’s time as head of equities:

Goldman Sachs Goes All-In on Florida as Wall Street South; The bank reportedly plans to move traders and senior executives to West Palm Beach in what would be a big shift for the financial industry.
Brian Chappatta – Bloomberg
Goldman Sachs Group Inc. seems determined to make clear that Florida isn’t just a passing pandemic fad for the financial industry. The bank, which is practically synonymous with Wall Street, made waves late last year with plans to move part of its asset-management unit to South Florida. I noted at the time that the decision didn’t signal that the core of Goldman was fleeing for a warmer, lower-tax region. After all, investors don’t necessarily need the turbocharged, cutthroat environment that defines traders and investment bankers, making asset management a natural division to spread across cheaper regions.

Dimon Warns of Bigger Trading Revenue Drop After Covid Boom
Sridhar Natarajan – Bloomberg
Wall Street’s pandemic-era trading boom could be drawing to a close, with JPMorgan Chase & Co. Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon signaling a 38% decline in trading revenue from a year ago — a bigger drop than previously expected.

JPMorgan foresees investment banking boom picking up earnings slack; Dimon predicts ‘one of the best’ quarters for M&A fees as bank expands market share
Joshua Franklin – FT
JPMorgan Chase chief executive Jamie Dimon has predicted the bank is on track for one of its strongest quarters for dealmaking fees, helping compensate for anaemic loan growth and a slowdown in trading revenue.

Deutsche Bank Set to Reap $1 Billion on Trader’s Freight Bet
Irene García Pérez and Luca Casiraghi – Bloomberg
Mark Spehn couldn’t join billionaire Idan Ofer at his seaside villa north of Tel Aviv for a June 8 party to mark the initial public offering of Zim Integrated Shipping Services Ltd. But the 35-year-old Deutsche Bank AG trader still had much to celebrate from his desk in London.

Cowen Outsourced Trading Expands Fixed Income Team With Two
Cowen (NASDAQ:COWN) (“Cowen” or the “Company”) today announced the expansion of its Fixed Income Outsourced Trading team with two senior hires, Vincent Governara and Chris Taliercio. Both traders bring over 15 years’ experience in the credit space at buy-side and sell-side institutions.

RBC adds Cowen clients to clearing platform; Through an agreement with Cowen, a subset of its clearing business will transition onto RBC’s Clearing and Custody platform.
Annabel Smith – The Trade
Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) has expanded its clearing and custody platform through an agreement with Cowen to transition a portion of its correspondent clearing clients to its.

ECB Hopes to Lift Bank Dividend Restrictions Soon, Enria Says
Nicholas Comfort – Bloomberg
Banks need caution as a lot of uncertainty over outlook: Enria; Supervisors to step up pressure on business models: Enria
The European Central Bank’s top regulatory official said he hopes to lift its cap on bank dividends “soon,” while tempering expectations for outsized investor payouts. “We will exit from these dividend recommendations, hopefully soon,” said Andrea Enria, who chairs the ECB’s supervisory board. “We have tabled a decision at our board on July 23 and we will communicate shortly after that.”

EU freezes 10 banks out of bond sales over antitrust breaches; Big names involved in historic market-rigging scandals barred from lucrative recovery plan
Tommy Stubbington – FT
The EU has excluded 10 of the heaviest-hitting banks in the debt market from running lucrative bond sales as part of its EUR800bn recovery fund, over historic breaches of antitrust rules.

‘Rotten culture’ pervaded HSBC forex desk, High Court trial hears; Currency manager ECU Group accuses bank of fraud and misconduct in ‘disgraceful episode’
Jane Croft – FT
A “rotten culture” pervaded HSBC’s foreign exchange trading desk between 2004 and 2006, with bankers misusing confidential information to “front run” client orders, it was claimed to the UK’s High Court on Monday.

Mizuho’s corporate culture to blame for serial system failures, probe finds
Takashi Umekawa – Reuters
Mizuho Financial Group Inc’s (8411.T) corporate culture is to blame for its long history of tech system failures, creating an atmosphere where managers are reluctant to express opinions and unable to respond well to crises, an investigation found.

Jamie Dimon says JPMorgan is sitting on about $500 billion in cash, waiting to invest in higher rates
Joy Wiltermuth – MarketWatch
Article corrected throughout to reflect Jamie Dimon said the bank has $500 billion in cash, not $500 million, per an incorrect transcript. Banking giant JPMorgan has been sitting on about a half-trillion-dollar stockpile of cash, waiting to invest in higher rates in the coming months, instead of buying Treasurys or other securities, Chief Executive Jamie Dimon said Monday at a virtual banking conference.


Record-high temperatures scorch Western states in preview of climate change future
David Knowles – Yahoo Finance
A week of triple-digit temperatures made worse by climate change is forecast across much of the American West this week, with records poised to fall in several towns, cities and states across the drought-plagued region.

Get Ready for a Flood of Sugar as Brazilians Buy Electric Cars
Fabiana Batista, Leonardo Lara and Isis Almeida – Bloomberg
Brazil is set to flood the world market with sugar as the transition to electric vehicles slashes demand for crop-based biofuels, according to a study led by an influential industry executive.

Europe’s Debt Avalanche Is Just About to Start; The Brussels pandemic bond will be a serious new rival to the Bund as Europe’s sovereign benchmark.
Marcus Ashworth – Bloomberg
The waiting’s over. The European Union has fired the gun on its multiyear bond issuance to fund the 750 billion-euro ($900 billion) pandemic recovery fund that the bloc agreed last summer.

Malaysia Expects to Fully Reopen Its Economy From End-October
Anisah Shukry and Yantoultra Ngui – Bloomberg
Malaysia expects to fully reopen its economy and lift a ban on inter-state travel beginning end-October at the earliest if new Covid cases average below 500 a day, said Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin.

China approves highest-ever outflows for mainland investors; Government adds record $10bn to investment scheme against backdrop of rising renminbi
Thomas Hale and Hudson Lockett – Ft
China has approved record amounts of investment to flow out of the country through an official scheme as authorities liberalise the local financial system against a backdrop of a rallying renminbi.

Greek 5-year bond yield turns negative for first time; Investors head in to riskier European debt confident that eurozone’s central bank has no plans to taper support
Tommy Stubbington – FT
Greece’s five-year bond yield fell below zero for the first time on Monday after the European Central Bank’s decision to maintain the pace of its asset purchase programme spurred a rally in riskier eurozone debt.


Inside Airbnb’s ‘Black Box’ Safety Team: Company Spends Millions on Payouts
Olivia Carville – Bloomberg
When things go horribly wrong during a stay, the company’s secretive safety team jumps in to soothe guests and hosts, help families—and prevent PR disasters.

John Lothian Newsletter

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Past JLN Newsletters

The Spread – July 30, 2021

The Spread – July 30, 2021

Earnings season in full bloom; Options lead year-to-date derivatives volume; Robinhood’s IPO; John gets real with Get Real VR: Conflicting factors underpin volatility; Cboe cleared for fall European competition; and the Cboe Options Institute’s Kevin Davitt talks about vega in this week’s “Term of the Week.”

The Four Biggest Ways That Robinhood Changed Investing

The Four Biggest Ways That Robinhood Changed Investing

First Read $51,906/$300,000 (17.3%) ++++ Options Continue to Lead Derivatives Volume Uptrend, but Q2 Lags, FIA Data Show Suzanne Cosgrove - John Lothian News Global futures and options volumes continued to trend higher in the first half of 2021 compared to both 2020...

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