Crypto Exchange FTX US Expands Stock Trading, Plans Options Next

Jul 28, 2022

First Read

Hits & Takes
John Lothian & JLN Staff

Crain’s Chicago Business has a story titled “Two Loop office buildings face loan trouble.” One of the buildings is one of the few buildings I formerly worked in, 216 West Jackson, the former home of First American Discount. It was also home, until recently, to the Rosenthal Collins Group, which is now part of Marex. The other building is the 19 S. LaSalle St. building.

Meanwhile, Bloomberg reports Citadel is adding office space for its growing Hong Kong Teams, which is counter trend to other financial firms that have moved people out of Hong Kong because of stringent Covid restrictions.

And just for good measure, Google plans to buy the James R. Thompson Center from the State of Illinois, which Crain’s Chicago Business says “signals a massive new commitment to Chicago by the technology giant.”

Justin Llewellyn-Jones of Broadridge has an article in Financial Technology Forum titled “Why Post-Trade Data is Key to Digitization.” He makes the case for an evolutionary approach to digitization.

The Wall Street Journal’s staff has come out with their summer reading list of the 10 books to read, “The Best Reviews of July; An uprising of animators, the search for dark matter, an NFL team’s legendary season and more highlights from this month in books.”

Chicago-based veteran financial journalist Debbie Carlson, who writes for several publications, has a piece today in Barron’s titled “These ETFs Promise Protection in a Down Market. It’s Working.”

The New York Stock Exchange is looking for a full-time Communications Associate in New York, reporting to the head of communications of the NYSE, Farrell Kramer.

PEAK6 has a number of open positions that might appeal to you. The list includes:

Chief of Staff
Staff Accountant
Application Support Analyst
IT Support Specialist
Procurement Specialist

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


Quantitative Brokers Expands Cboe Collaboration, Adds VIX® To The Liquidity Tracker; QB Provides Best Execution Analytics and New Analytics to Help Track and Achieve Best Execution on VIX Futures
Quantitative Brokers
Quantitative Brokers (QB), a leading provider of advanced institutional execution algorithms and data-driven analytics for global futures, options, and OTC fixed income markets — today announced that it is adding the widely traded Cboe Volatility Index (VIX®) futures contract to QB’s Liquidity Tracker open-source analytics tool. Cboe is a leading provider of global market infrastructure and tradeable products, and this latest move expands QB’s support of Cboe products.

***** QB continues to methodically add products to its mix. ~JJL


12 Scams to Avoid During Retirement; Scams use the stereotype of a confused, older person giving their money to a scammer is almost cliché at this point in time. Unfortunately, not many people question this idea,…
John Boitnott – Entrepreneur
Scams use the stereotype of a confused, older person giving their money to a scammer is almost cliché at this point in time. Unfortunately, not many people question this idea, leading them to ask why seniors fall for scams in the first place. A better question may be, why does anyone fall for a scam? Some experts theorize that perhaps heightened isolation and loneliness that many retirees experience primes them to fall prey to scams. Others hypothesize that some degree of diminishment of cognitive abilities might be at play, making seniors more susceptible to believing outlandish claims. However, it might surprise you that the “seniors fall for scams all the time” trope is actually a myth. In fact, one annual study suggests that year after year — young people fall for scams and hoaxes more than their elders — losing more money to unscrupulous bad actors every year.

****** Young people lose more money than seniors, but they should know better.~JJL


An industry in disruption: A survey of the automotive industry’s journey from paper to digital
Wolters Kluwer
Digital transformation is advancing the automotive industry, with new tools improving the efficiency and accuracy of financing processes. Deploying eContract and eSignature solutions can help auto dealers, lenders, and service providers streamline processes, improve compliance, and deliver a better experience to consumers. But how many auto companies are taking advantage of this digitalization opportunity? What’s holding them back? And how could their choices influence your next steps?

***** Not open outcry, but another industry moving from paper to digital solutions.~JJL


Wednesday’s Top Three
Our top story Wednesday was the OCC press release OCC Names ABN AMRO Clearing Executive Mike Nowak as Chief Financial Officer. (Mike Nowak was also our MarketsWiki Page of the Day Wednesday.) Second was Coinbase Faces Huge Challenge — Which May Affect All of Crypto, from The Street. Third was Libertarian Cartoons Promise to Turn Your Kids Into Little Ayn Rands, from Bloomberg.


MarketsWiki Stats
26,955 pages; 239,828 edits
MarketsWiki Statistics


Lead Stories

Crypto Exchange FTX US Expands Stock Trading, Plans Options Next; Stock-trading service launched to all US users after beta test ; Plans to add options trading in future, following Robinhood
Yueqi Yang and Katherine Doherty – Bloomberg
Crypto exchange FTX US is expanding its no-fee stock trading service to all US users, including non-crypto investors, in a move to expand its customer base and increase assets under custody. “Our beta users were from a pool of existing FTX US crypto users,” Brett Harrison, president of FTX US, said in an interview. “It will be very interesting when we open it to all to see how many FTX US users start to trade stocks, and to what it extent we will be able to bring new users.”

Humanity can’t equivocate any longer. This is a climate emergency; The climate emergency has been declared over and over. The future the scientists warned us about is here, now
Rebecca Solnit and Terry Tempest Williams – The Guardian
We are declaring a climate emergency. Everyone can, in whatever place on Earth they call home. No one needs to wait for politicians any more – we have been waiting for them for decades. What history shows us is that when people lead, governments follow. Our power resides in what we are witnessing. We cannot deny that Great Salt Lake is vanishing before our eyes into a sun-cracked playa of salt and toxic chemicals. Nor can we deny that Lake Mead is reduced to a puddle. In New Mexico a wildfire that began in early April is still burning in late July. Last August, the eye of Hurricane Ida split in two – there was no calm – only 190mph winds ripping towns in the bayous of Louisiana to shreds; and 7m acres in the American west burned in 2021. The future the scientists warned us about is where we live now.

Hardly Anyone Talks About How Fracking Was an Extraordinary Boondoggle
David Wallace-Wells – NY Times
In the energy scramble provoked by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, American liquid natural gas has so far played the role of Europe’s white knight. If Europe manages to keep its lights on, homes heated and factories running this winter, when energy demand is highest, it will be in large part thanks to shipments of American gas, which have more than doubled since the war began. Today, two-thirds of American oil and even more of its gas comes from hydraulic fracturing, better known as fracking, which has played this heroic-seeming role before, in the country’s long effort post-9/11 to get out from the grip of Middle Eastern producers and secure what is often described as “energy independence.” (Donald Trump preferred the term “energy dominance.”) It hasn’t proved quite as useful as you might think: Because energy prices are set on global markets, domestic production doesn’t mean Americans pay less at the pump. But thanks in large part to fracking, the United States has become the world’s largest producer of both oil and gas.

SEC’s Gensler Says PCAOB Has Been Sluggish in Rulemaking; The chair of the U.S. securities regulator also urged audit firms to review and enhance their independence protocols with respect to their auditing and consulting practices
Mark Maurer – WSJ
Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Gary Gensler said the U.S. audit regulator has been slow to update its rules, in a speech marking the 20th anniversary of the law that created it. The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, created as part of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, continues to work with interim standards that it was allowed to use from the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, a professional association whose guidelines and rules are often used as fallbacks for the industry.

Senate Approves $280 Billion Bill to Boost U.S. Chip Making, Technology; Bipartisan backers say measure is needed to counter China, while GOP foes say embrace of industrial policy amounts to corporate welfare
Ryan Tracy, Natalie Andrews – WSJ
The Senate on Wednesday approved a $280 billion bill aimed at boosting the semiconductor industry crucial to modern technology, in a bipartisan embrace of expanding U.S. industrial policy to counter the competitive threat posed by China. The vote reflected growing concern in both parties that the U.S. lacks a long-term response to Beijing’s technological and economic rise, a view galvanized when the Covid-19 pandemic disrupted chip supplies from Asia, with fallout across major industries.

Microsoft Asks Google, Oracle to Help Crimp Amazon’s U.S. Government Cloud Leadership; Software companies trying to get the U.S. to share its cloud-spending more widely by embracing multicloud approach
Aaron Tilley – WSJ
Microsoft Corp. is rallying other big-name cloud-computing providers such as Alphabet Inc.’s Google and Oracle Corp. to press the U.S. government into spreading its spending on such services more widely, taking aim at Inc.’s dominance in such contracts. The software giant has issued talking points to other cloud companies aimed at jointly lobbying Washington to require major government projects to use more than one cloud service, according to people familiar with the effort and a document viewed by The Wall Street Journal.

Coinbase’s ‘End of Story’ Is Just the Beginning for Crypto Regulation; Crypto’s crash means it’s under increasing scrutiny.
Lionel Laurent – Bloomberg
A few days ago, Coinbase Global Inc.’s top lawyer issued an unequivocal rejection of the US Securities and Exchange Commission’s allegations that digital tokens it offers its customers were, in fact, unregistered securities. “Coinbase does not list securities,” Paul Grewal wrote in a blog post. “End of story.” The end? Given the SEC has opened an investigation into Coinbase’s activities, according to Bloomberg News, this looks more like just the beginning of hard questions about crypto platforms’ business models and their future profit prospects amid a brutal market crash. Crypto’s utopian babble is about to be scrutinized in ways that are likely to fundamentally change the market for digital currencies.

‘Useful Idiot’ Jailed Over £104 Million Dubai Cash Smuggling; Money laundering mastermind handed more than 9 years in prison; Couriers carrying cash flew 83 trips to Dubai in two years
Jonathan Browning and Olivia Fletcher – Bloomberg
The ringleader of one the UK’s largest money laundering operations was jailed for nine years and seven months after investigators caught couriers smuggling suitcases packed with bags of cash to Dubai. Mohammed Ali Bin Beyat Alfalasi arranged for a network of couriers to fly £104 million ($126 million) of street cash to Dubai over nearly two years through to October 2020, the National Crime Agency said. Alfalasi pleaded guilty earlier this month.

China Banks Rush to Raise Record Debt as Credit Losses Mount; Lenders, governments selling more bonds to raise capital; Financial institutions feel pinch of economic woes: official
Bloomberg News
Chinese banks are rushing to boost capital as they prepare for a potential spike in bad loans due to the economic slowdown and spreading housing crisis. A record amount of fresh money has come from financial markets, with banks selling 29% more bonds in the first half of the year compared to last year to replenish capital and cover credit losses. Local authorities also provided funds from government bond sales to help cash-strapped regional lenders.

JPMorgan, UBS Brokerage Units Pay SEC Fines for Anti-Identity Theft Programs
Matt Robinson – Bloomberg
US brokerage units of JPMorgan Chase & Co. and UBS Group AG agreed to pay a combined $2.1 million in penalties to settle allegations from the Securities and Exchange Commission that they didn’t have the proper policies and programs in place to prevent customer identity theft. According to the SEC, from at least January 2017 to October 2019 the firms didn’t have sufficient procedures for detecting identity theft in connection with client accounts. The brokerages, which didn’t admit or deny the allegations, violated regulations that lay out requirements for financial firms’ prevention programs, the agency said on Wednesday.

Big European Banks Brace For Chat-App Costs
Ben Dummett – WSJ
WhatsApp is free – but chat apps are proving costly for banks. Credit Suisse Group AG and Deutsche Bank AG both said Wednesday they had set aside money for potential fines over staffers using unapproved messaging services, such as WhatsApp. The announcements come a day after UBS Group AG [said it was also in the crosshairs] of U.S. regulators over the issue. In December, JPMorgan Chase & Co. agreed to pay $200 million to the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, and admitted it failed to track employees’ use of apps that circumvented record-keeping requirements. Other banks such as HSBC Holdings PLC have said they face similar scrutiny.

IMF sees stablecoins posing biggest risk to crypto markets — ‘There are others that could fail’
Jennifer Schonberger – Yahoo! Finance
The International Monetary Fund says crypto markets could see further selling pressure and more failures of coin offerings, including stablecoins. “We could see further selloffs, both in crypto assets and in risky asset markets, like equities,” Tobias Adrian, Director of Monetary and Capital Markets for the IMF, told Yahoo Finance in an interview. “There could be further failures of some of the coin offerings — in particular, some of the algorithmic stablecoins that have been hit most hard, and there are others that could fail.”

The SEC Is Providing Regulatory Clarity, Just Not How Anyone Wants
Nikhilesh De – CoinDesk
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) set up a challenge on whether some tokens were securities, and Coinbase went ahead and slapped the agency with a glove. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) alleged that nine cryptocurrencies are securities. The SEC calling a cryptocurrency a security is not new. What is new is it doing so in a legal filing that doesn’t directly address the issuers of the tokens. The regulator appears to be laying the groundwork for bringing crypto trading platforms more fully into its umbrella.

UBS Says It’s Part of US Probe Into Unapproved Staff Messaging; Morgan Stanley, Citigroup have flagged they’re expecting fines; U.S. regulators poised to levy about $1 billion in penalties
Steven Arons – Bloomberg
UBS AG signaled that it’s part of a broad probe by US regulators into messaging by bank employees that’s likely to saddle lenders with fines of about $1 billion. The Swiss bank is co-operating with investigations by the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission “regarding compliance with records preservation requirements relating to business communications sent over unapproved electronic messaging channels,” it said in its earnings report on Tuesday.

Credit Suisse Tries to Turn the Page—Again
Rochelle Toplensky – WSJ
Credit Suisse is still struggling to get its house in order. A new leader will help, but the job is getting harder. The crisis-prone bank named a new chief executive officer and strategy on Wednesday, alongside dismal second-quarter results. The change isn’t surprising after its recent string of quarterly losses, profit warnings and senior personnel changes. The board will be more involved, and the incoming CEO brings useful experience, but previous efforts have been disappointing and the macroeconomic backdrop isn’t ideal for a turnaround.

Credit Suisse to scale back investment bank under new chief; Ulrich Körner replaces Thomas Gottstein and promises ‘comprehensive’ review of Swiss lender’s business
Owen Walker – FT
Credit Suisse plans to scale back its investment bank under new chief executive Ulrich Körner, as the troubled lender battles to return to profit and reverse a slump in its shares. The Swiss bank on Wednesday installed Körner, who has run its asset management business since March, 2021, to replace Thomas Gottstein, who is stepping down after leading the 166-year-old institution through one of the most tumultuous periods in its history. As part of a series of sweeping changes, Credit Suisse launched a “comprehensive” review of its businesses that will focus on shrinking its unprofitable investment bank and making significant cost cuts across a company that employs 45,000 people.

Kraken, a U.S. Crypto Exchange, Is Suspected of Violating Sanctions; The Treasury Department is investigating whether the crypto exchange allowed users in Iran to buy and sell digital tokens, said people with knowledge of the matter.
Ryan Mac and David Yaffe-Bellany – NY Times
Kraken, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, is under federal investigation, suspected of violating U.S. sanctions by allowing users in Iran and elsewhere to buy and sell digital tokens, according to five people affiliated with the company or with knowledge of the inquiry.

Crypto Should Get Its Own Laws to Aid Ownership Claims, UK Says; Government should make a distinct property category for crypto; Law Commission issued series of proposals on digital assets
Emily Nicolle – Bloomberg
The UK needs to reform legislation to specifically account for cryptocurrencies and nonfungible tokens, the country’s Law Commission said, arguing that existing laws aren’t robust enough to govern the fledgling sector. Laws regarding personal property should be changed to include a distinct category for so-called “data objects”, which would encompass intangible, and sometimes unique, assets like crypto tokens, the commission said. The organization, an independent agency, makes recommendations to the government.

CFTC’s Benham says Crypto Regulation at Inflection Point
Shanny Basar – Markets Media
Rostin Behnam, chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, said the US patchwork of regulation over digital assets is proving to be increasingly inadequate. Behnam gave the keynote address at the Brookings Institution on July 25 and highlighted that regulation has reached an inflection point as the digital asset industry in the US does not fall under a single comprehensive regulatory regime.

China-US Deal Needed Very Soon to Avoid Delistings, SEC’s Gensler Says
Lydia Beyoud – Bloomberg
US and China officials must reach an agreement “very soon” over access to audit work papers for Chinese companies to avoid being kicked off American stock exchanges, Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Gary Gensler said Wednesday. Regulators from the two countries have been locked in negotiations over granting US auditor watchdogs complete and open access to the work papers of about 200 Chinese companies, including Alibaba Group Holding Ltd and Inc. An American law signed in 2020 could force those companies off the Nasdaq and the New York Stock Exchange as soon as 2024, if inspectors from the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board don’t get access.

Coinbase SEC Probe Into Listed Tokens Has Crypto Traders Rattled; Assets plunged on Tuesday on agency probe into coin offerings; SEC calling nine tokens securities frustrated CFTC regulators
Lydia Beyoud and Allyson Versprille – Bloomberg
The US Securities and Exchange Commission’s scrutiny of digital currencies that are listed on Coinbase Global Inc. is igniting concerns that a major crackdown for the rest of the industry is imminent. Digital coins are headed for a losing week, dragged down by the revelation that the SEC has been investigating whether Coinbase shirked regulations by offering trading in certain tokens. Anxieties were already running high after the regulator took the unusual step of identifying several crypto assets that it considered to be securities as part of an insider trading case.

Two Loop office buildings face loan trouble; The properties could add to the wave of distress that has washed over the Loop office market since the beginning of the pandemic.
Danny Ecker – Crain’s Chicago Business
The owners of two vintage Loop office buildings are staring down potential loan defaults, adding to the list of pandemic-induced financial problems plaguing office landlords in the heart of the city. In one of the two cases, a $16.5 million loan tied to the 10-story property at 216 W. Jackson Blvd. was transferred this month to a special servicer, a signal that the mortgage could soon go into default. In the other, a $19 million loan on the 16-story office building at 19 S. LaSalle St. matured this month after being transferred to a special servicer in May.

Citadel adds office space for growing Hong Kong teams; Hong Kong is facing a talent shortage because of a deepening political crackdown and stringent COVID controls.
Bloomberg via Crain’s Chicago Business
Ken Griffin’s Citadel and Citadel Securities are snapping up extra office space in Hong Kong to accommodate expanding teams, a vote of confidence in a city that’s seen an exodus of professionals frustrated by its Covid restrictions and Beijing’s tightening grip. Hedge fund Citadel leased the 59th floor in premium office tower Two IFC, adding 22,000 square feet, while market maker Citadel Securities took up a similarly sized 42nd floor, according to people familiar with the matter. That’s in addition to a third floor they already occupy in the building.

Google to buy Thompson Center; Developer Mike Reschke’s company will renovate the building.
John Pletz and Danny Ecker – Crain’s Chicago Business
Google plans to buy the James R. Thompson Center in a surprise deal that gives new life to an iconic but aging downtown office building and signals a massive new commitment to Chicago by the technology giant. The Silicon Valley-based company, which opened its first Chicago office 22 years ago, has been rapidly expanding its headcount here to nearly 2,000 workers in two buildings in Fulton Market, adding 500 jobs last year. In the Thompson Center, Google is making the sort of outsized bet on Chicago that it made in New York, where it now has 12,000 employees and recently bought a 1.3 million-square-foot campus on the Hudson River. Google declined to say how many jobs it will add when it moves into the Thompson Center in four years, but a source familiar with its plans says the company likely will add 5,000 jobs by then.

Crypto Exchanges Fight ‘Gravitational Pull’ To Delist Assets Deemed Securities
Emily Mason – Forbes
Much of the cryptocurrency world is anticipating continued fallout over the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s allegations in a civil lawsuit that nine crypto assets involved in an insider trading case are securities. The designation comes as the regulator is reported to be investigating whether the largest American crypto exchange, San Francisco-based CoinbaseCOIN +11.1%, offered unregistered securities. Hundreds of other exchanges around the world are trading the nine assets named in the insider trading case, forcing a tough decision: ignore the allegations and wait for an official ruling or pre-emptively appease the SEC and stop listing the assets now to avoid a Coinbase-style suit.

Cat among the pigeons? New report outlines the latest Mifid II amendments; A new draft report on Mifid II amendments confirms plans to ban payment for order flow (PFOF) in Europe, as well as removing dark pool caps and supporting a pre-trade consolidated tape, among others. The TRADE explores these legislative updates in detail to provide a comprehensive summary of the proposed changes.
Laurie McAughtry – The Trade
Senior EU lawmaker and MEP Danuta Hübner has laid out new details recommending further Mifid II amendments in a draft report for the European Parliament seen by The TRADE: including plans to ban payment for order flow (PFOF) in Europe, reduce the regulatory burden on systematic internalisers (SIs), remove dark pool caps, and support a pre-trade consolidated tape.

ESMA updates guidance on algorithmic trading; The regulator has updated its Q&As on Mifid II and Mifir market structure topics to clarify guidance on automated trading functionalities and compliance when using third party systems.
Laurie McAughtry – The Trade
The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), the EU’s securities markets regulator, has updated its Q&As on Mifid II and Mifir market structure to provide more detail on various elements of algorithmic trading, particularly around the issues of automated order management and third party systems. Clarified in mid-July, the first update confirms that orders executed through trading functionalities which offer automated managing of the order do indeed qualify as algorithmic trading.

Frederick Barclay’s Nephews Hold Key to Keeping Him Out of Jail; Tycoon faces jail for failing to pay £100 million divorce; Court cases have exposed notoriously secretive family rifts
Jonathan Browning – Bloomberg
While Frederick Barclay, the octogenarian British tycoon, waits to learn if he’ll be sent to prison for refusing to pay his ex-wife in their divorce, a memo from a London court hearing revealed that his advisers held talks to sell a 25% stake in the family businesses.

It’s Back to the Future for Zero-Carbon Energy in the US; Historical data shows the share of carbon-free sources in the country’s energy mix hasn’t been this high since the turn of the 20th century.
Nathaniel Bullard – Bloomberg
I like a deep data set, and in energy there are few deeper than the US government’s on national energy consumption. The Energy Information Administration has data on (really, informed estimates of) US energy consumption going back to 1635. Looking that far back is entertaining, but it does not offer a lot of insight. Basically, the numbers show we burned wood for energy for quite some time.

Ukraine Invasion

Ukrainian strikes hit key supply route in Russia-controlled Kherson region; US-supplied high-precision rockets damage bridge on Dnipro river, making transport impossible
Max Seddon and Mark Raczkiewycz – FT
Russian authorities suspended traffic over a strategically important bridge in the Kherson region on Wednesday after Ukraine used US-supplied high-precision rockets to attack a crucial supply route. Kirill Stremousov, deputy head of the Russia-appointed local administration in the southern city of Kherson, told Russian state newswires that Ukraine had launched rocket strikes on the Antonivsky bridge late on Tuesday, making transport impossible.

Russian Economic Pain Spreads Unevenly as Sanctions Shock Fades; Stronger ruble supports consumer, business sentiment; IMF expects a smaller GDP drop in Russia than earlier forecast
Russia’s economic slide continued in June but didn’t take a turn for the worse, as fresh data underscored the uncertainty about the longer-term impact of sanctions. Industrial production was down 1.8% in June from a year earlier, less of a drop than analysts had expected, the State Statistics Service said Wednesday.

Trader Keeps Russian Wheat Flowing as War Sparks Food Dilemma; Viterra shipped biggest volumes among international traders; West imposes sanctions but wants to Black Sea grain to flow
Aine Quinn – Bloomberg
An international trader, backed by Canadian pension funds and Glencore Plc, is still exporting large volumes of Russian grain as Moscow wages war in Ukraine. Viterra has kept its ranking, behind three Russian traders, as the No. 4 exporter of the country’s wheat, corn, and barley in the first few weeks of the new season. It has shipped more than 850,000 tons of Russian grain since the invasion started on Feb. 24, according to shipping lineup data from Logistic OS.

US, Ukraine sign pact to expand cooperation in cyberspace
Brad Dress – The Hill
The U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) signed an agreement Wednesday with Ukraine’s cybersecurity agency to strengthen cooperation between the two countries in the cyberspace, including the commitment to share more information and conduct training sessions together.

U.S. veterans training Ukrainian soldiers: “The people not trained will not last long”
Holly Williams – CBS News
In an old quarry around 10 miles from the front line, a group of former U.S. servicemen trained Ukrainian soldiers on Wednesday. The five-day course teaches battlefield first aid and how to maneuver. Many of the Ukrainians only signed up to fight after Russia’s invasion, with some having next to no experience firing a gun. “Never point your weapon at anything you don’t want to shoot,” lead instructor Rob, who won’t share his last name for security reasons, told the Ukrainians.

Egypt Cancels 240,000 Tons of Ukrainian Wheat Contracts; State buyer GASC canceled four cargoes on supplier requests; Wheat-importer Egypt has adequate stockpiles of grain
Salma El Wardany and Abdel Latif Wahba – Bloomberg
Egypt canceled four cargoes of Ukrainian wheat that it contracted to buy before Russia’s invasion, even as Kyiv prepares to restart grain exports following a forced five-month hiatus due to the war. State buyer GASC scrapped the purchase of 240,000 tons for February and March delivery that never loaded in Ukraine, according to three people with knowledge of the matter who asked not to be identified because they aren’t authorized to speak to the media.

A London Hedge Fund Wants Its Money Back From Ukraine; Richard Deitz sees his case as a test not just for him as an investor but also for Ukraine
Anna Hirtenstein – WSJ
Ukraine is fighting for its survival and is desperate for cash, but that isn’t deterring London hedge-fund manager Richard Deitz from demanding money back from an ill-fated investment there. Mr. Deitz’s VR Capital has a long history of making money in countries going through upheaval. His fund paid $123 million in 2019 to buy distressed loans issued by state-owned Ukrainian Railways, hoping they could work out a repayment and get a double-digit return. But in May the Ukrainian government seized the investment as part of its sweep to nationalize Russian assets within its borders. The thing is, neither Mr. Deitz nor the asset is Russian.

Crops ‘Stored Everywhere’: Ukraine’s Harvest Piles Up
Liz Alderman – NY Times
A small army of combine harvesters rolled across an endless farm field on a recent afternoon in western Ukraine, kicking dust clouds into the blue sky as the machines gathered in a sea of golden wheat. Mountains of soy and corn will be reaped in coming weeks. It will all add to a 20-million-ton backlog of grain that has been trapped in Ukraine during Russia’s grinding war.

Exchanges, OTC and Clearing

Cboe Global Markets to Migrate Corporate Data and Analytics Platform to Snowflake Data Cloud
Cboe Global Markets, Inc. (Cboe: CBOE), a leading provider of global market infrastructure and tradable products, today announced it is leveraging Snowflake, the Data Cloud company, to migrate its corporate data and analytics from on-premises systems to the cloud. The adoption of Snowflake’s Data Cloud will help transform Cboe’s data and analytics infrastructure into a modern cloud architecture, bringing speed, scalability, and efficiency to the company’s handling of its internal, proprietary data and analytics.

ICE Launches Plug-and-Play Connectivity to Managed Data Feed in Taiwan; Allows customers to simply ‘connect in’ to the ICE Consolidated Feed without need for any dedicated hardware infrastructure
Intercontinental Exchange, Inc. (NYSE: ICE), a leading global provider of data, technology and market infrastructure, today announced it has expanded data delivery capabilities in the Asia Pacific region with the launch of a resilient, multi-tenant and fully managed datafeed access center in Taiwan, called ICE Shared Farm.

SIX Officially Launches the Swiss GDRs-leg of the China-Switzerland Stock Connect Together With Shanghai and Shenzhen Stock Exchanges
Today, SIX officially launched the Swiss GDR-leg of the China-Switzerland Stock Connect with the participation of senior government representatives from China and Switzerland. In addition to the official launch celebrations, the first Chinese companies aim to list their Global Depository Receipts GDRs this afternoon and trading is expected to start in the newly established GDR trading segment on SIX Swiss Exchange at 3 pm today.

Deutsche Börse
Deutsche Börse Group has just published its 2022 half-year financial report, including the figures for the second quarter. The link to the full report is at the bottom of the email.

EBS Market on CME Globex Notice
Topics in this issue include: Critical Information; Announcements and Additional Resources.

Deutsche Börse Group achieves strong organic growth
Deutsche Börse Group
Deutsche Börse Group has just published its half-yearly financial report 2022 including the figures for the second quarter.

Trading Discontinuation of 9 Equity Index Futures / Options
According to our Equity Index Futures / Options product review result, Hong Kong Futures Exchange Limited (the “Exchange”) has decided to discontinue the trading of following 9 Equity Index Futures / Options.

1nvest lists an ETF that seeks to counter global warming
Today, South African investors will have an opportunity to get exposure to an Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) that invests in socially responsible large and mid-cap companies operating across 23 developed markets. This is after 1nvest, a specialist index fund manager, listed the 1nvest MSCI World Socially Responsible Investment Index Feeder ETF (ETFSRI) on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE). The ETF tracks the performance of the MSCI World SRI Select Reduced Fossil Fuels Index by investing in the iShares MSCI World SRI UCITS ETF.

Keynote Speech by Tan Boon Gin, CEO of SGX RegCo, at SGX RegCo-Women in Sustainability and Environment event on “The Roadmap and Roadblocks in the Financial Sector”
Good afternoon and welcome to SGX. I spoke last week at an event on “Climate Reporting in ASEAN” and said, among other things, that as a regulator, we are looking at the adoption of the International Sustainability Standards Board reporting standards. These standards could be finalized as early as the end of this year and lead to more complete, consistent and comparable climate disclosures by our listed companies.

The Taiwan Futures Exchange (TAIFEX) has announced the temporarily increased margin levels of QWF due to its underlying being subject to disposition measures imposed by securities market.
The margins will be effective after the close of the regular trading session on 2022/07/29 and will be restored to the current levels after the close of the regular trading session on 2022/08/12. (Margin levels will be increased from 2022/07/29 to 2022/08/12 and will be extended accordingly if the securities market is closed on any of the days.)


Jack Ma to give up control of fintech giant Ant Group: WSJ
Rita Liao – TechCrunch
China’s billionaire tech boss Jack Ma plans to cede control of Ant Group, the fintech powerhouse closely affiliated with Alibaba, the e-commerce giant he founded, The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday.
If realized, the move will mark another important turn in Ant’s restructuring and power shuffling since China called off its $35 billion initial public offering nearly two years ago.

Billionaire CEO Seeks to Reset Fintech Pioneer After IPO Fiasco
Saritha Rai – Bloomberg
Paytm was the poster boy for India’s tech startups, only to lose two-thirds of its value since its IPO and become a symbol of the industry’s crash. Now its founder promises a sharpened focus on financial performance to convince investors of the money-losing company’s prospects.

Portage Ventures is seeking to raise up to $1 billion to fund startups
Echo Wang – Reuters
Portage Ventures is seeking to raise up to $1 billion for a structured equity fund that will focus on financing startups in the financial technology sector that are reluctant to take a hit in their valuation amid the market downturn, people familiar with the matter said.
The fund will be a so-called structured equity fund, investing in securities that combine debt and equity features and do not require startups to lock in a valuation as with traditional equity fundraising.

CloudMargin Signs Seven New Bank Clients in Last Quarter; Cross-Asset Functionality Key Driver of Growth
CloudMargin, creator of the world’s first and only collateral and margin management solution native to the cloud, announced today a number of significant achievements over the quarter ended June 30, including adding seven new bank clients globally, further enhancing the ability to centralise data and optimise collateral via the CloudMargin platform, and hiring a key new member of the sales team in Europe.

Rockstar Games Cleaned Up Its Frat-Boy Culture — and Grand Theft Auto, Too; With a new tone at the company and a change in creative direction, GTA VI will probably feel very different from its predecessor
Jason Schreier – Bloomberg
In the summer of 2020, after a police officer killed George Floyd, Rockstar Games quietly shelved a mode of play it had planned to release for its Grand Theft Auto Online game. Called Cops ‘n’ Crooks, the mode was a twist on the children’s game where players organize into teams of good guys and bad guys, but seemed especially tone-deaf during the global reckoning over police violence. Senior executives at the company, concerned about how the narrative might be interpreted during a time of heightened skepticism and mistrust of American police, put it aside. They still haven’t made plans to bring it back, according to people familiar with development.

Symbiont Announces Appointment of Ann Neidenbach to Board of Directors
Symbiont – PR Newswire
Symbiont, Inc., a technology pioneer solving complex global finance problems using enterprise blockchain solutions, today announced the appointment of Ann Neidenbach to Symbiont’s Board of Directors. She joins current Board members Daniel Gallagher, Shivan Govindan, Jack Markell, and Duncan Niederauer. Symbiont also announced that Todd Ruppert has concurrently stepped down from his Board role and thanks him for his contributions and leadership during the past few years as a Board Director.

Artists Use Crypto to Take the ‘Industry’ Out of Music Industry; Artists are looking to blockchain technology to connect more directly with fans — and to bolster their earnings.
Victoria Vergolina – Bloomberg
Earlier this year, pop music duo The Chainsmokers released 5,000 nonfungible tokens for free. These NFTs gave fans a 1% cut of the streaming royalties from their latest album, as well as priority access to concert tickets and free merchandise. The Chainsmokers aren’t the first musicians to experiment with crypto, NFTs or blockchain, and they’re unlikely to be the last.

In Fintech, 2022 Is Becoming The Year Of Layoffs
Jeff Kauflin – Forbes
If 2021 was the year of plentiful venture capital and bloated valuations in fintech, 2022 is shaping up as the year of downsizing, with cuts ranging from dramatic and very public layoffs to unannounced staff winnowing.

BVI joins Plato Partnership to launch new trading certification programme; The qualification is aimed at market practitioners across the buy and sell-side, and will take place in Frankfurt, Germany.
Laurie McAughtry – The Trade
Traders across the buy- and sell-side, along with fund managers, trading staff and supporting personnel, can now keep up to date with current trading-related issues through a new Trading Certification Programme launched today by Plato Partnership in collaboration with the German Investment Fund Assocation (BVI) and Professor Dr Peter Gomber, chair of e-finance at Goethe University in Frankfurt.

Genesis Global receives backing from Bank of America, BNY Mellon and Citi through $20 million strategic investment; Following a $200 million Series C funding round earlier this year, the new investment will allow the app developer to expand its operations as interest in its platform continues to grow.
Wesley Bray – The Trade
Low-code application development platform Genesis Global has received $20 million in new investments from Bank of America, BNY Mellon and Citi. The strategic investment follows a successful $200 million Series C funding round achieved by Genesis in February.

BlackRock iShares alumnus joins digital asset investment manager ahead of Europe’s first spot Bitcoin ETF launch; The ETF specialist, who was instrumental in building out BlackRock’s iShares offering, joins Jacobi Asset Management as CEO to drive forward its digital asset ETF ambitions.
Laurie McAughtry – The Trade
Former BlackRock alumnus Martin Blednell will join a next-generation digital asset investment manager Jacobi Asset Management as CEO, starting 1 August. The outgoing CEO, Jamie Khurshid, becomes chairman of the board.


Government Hackers Use Mobile Spyware to Target US Diplomats’ Phones, Schiff Says; Israeli vendor NSO Group is one of dozens of sellers; Proliferation is a major threat, internet watchdog group says
Katrina Manson – Bloomberg
Government hackers are likely using commercial spyware to breach phones belonging to US officials stationed around the world, the chairman of the House intelligence committee said on Wednesday.

Hong Kong Dismisses Report of Security Flaw in Covid Tracing App; The city says audit report claiming vulnerabilities is unfair; Hong Kong grappling with low levels of public trust since 2019
Sarah Zheng – Bloomberg
Hong Kong’s government has rejected a cybersecurity firm’s claim that flaws in the city’s Covid-19 tracing app could expose sensitive user information, saying there have been no incidents of data leakage. The city’s government was responding to a security audit of the LeaveHomeSafe app published by Polish cybersecurity firm 7ASecurity, which said it detected vulnerabilities in the software that could allow hackers to access ID numbers, visit records or vaccination and testing information.

Cybersecurity Protocol Naoris Raises $11.5M to Build Decentralized Proof-of-Security Consensus Mechanism
Cameron Thompson – CoinDesk
Portuguese cybersecurity protocol Naoris raised $11.5 million in an equity and token sale with participation from Tim Draper’s Draper Associates, Holt Xchange and other investors, the company said Wednesday.
According to CEO and founder David Carvalho, Naoris will use the funding to expand and scale its operations, creating a decentralized proof-of-security consensus mechanism by the end of 2022.

1 in 3 employees don’t understand why cybersecurity is important
What’s more, only 39% of employees say they’re very likely to report a security incident, making investigation and remediation even more challenging and time-consuming for security teams. When asked why, 42% of employees said they wouldn’t know if they had caused an incident in the first place, and 25% say they just don’t care enough about cybersecurity to mention it.

Clearwater Acquires TECH LOCK, Expands Cybersecurity, HIPAA Compliance Services
Jill McKeon – Health IT Security
Clearwater, a cyber risk management and HIPAA compliance solutions vendor, completed its acquisition of TECH LOCK, which will allow the company to provide 24/7 managed detection and response (MDR) services and enhance its cybersecurity and HIPAA compliance offerings, a press release stated.

Cybersecurity vendor Entrust tells customers data was stolen during June cyberattack
Carly Page – TechCrunch
Minneapolis-based cybersecurity giant Entrust has confirmed it was hit by a cyberattack last month.
Entrust, which describes itself as a global leader in identities, payments and data protection, told TechCrunch that an “unauthorized party” was able to access parts of its system that are used for the internal operations on June 18.

Digital Trust Is The Goal Of Cybersecurity: Why Zero Trust Needs To Evolve To Include Identity-First Security
David Mahdi – Forbes
Today’s enterprises face a new era of complexities. Indeed, what unites almost all enterprises is that the walled fortresses that IT professionals spent decades building have fundamentally changed. The enterprise environment is made up of a complex combination of hybrid and multicloud environments, as well as swathes of applications and processes—each requiring new tools, new approaches and a paradigm shift to ensure operations, compliance and security.

U.S., Ukraine sign cybersecurity collaboration agreement
Darryl Coote – UPI
The U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency has entered into an agreement with its Ukrainian counterpart to deepen their collaboration on cybersecurity threats.
CISA said Wednesday that it signed the memorandum of cooperation with the State Service of Special Communications and Information Protection of Ukraine earlier this week.

Microsoft Confirms Windows Users Targeted By 0Day Hack Attack
Davey Winder – Forbes
Microsoft has demonstrated how important it is to apply security updates as soon as possible, with confirmation of how a zero-day vulnerability fixed in the July ‘Patch Tuesday’ rollout is being used in targeted attacks.


Tether Says There Is No Chinese Commercial Paper Among Its Reserves; Stablecoin issuer’s reserves under scrutiny as new rules near; Markets have sought more clarity on what securities are held
Emily Nicolle – Bloomberg
Tether said the reserves backing its $66 billion stablecoin do not contain any Chinese commercial paper, likely marking the first time that the issuer of the world’s most used cryptocurrency explicitly stated it doesn’t hold the controversial assets. Tether Holdings Ltd., which issues and operates the US dollar-pegged token USDT, had most recently refuted speculation that its token was 85% backed by Chinese or Asian commercial paper in June. It has been steadily decreasing its exposure to commercial paper in favor of holding US Treasury bills, with a goal of reducing its paper holdings to zero by early November.

HK crypto exchange OSL sells security tokens to institutional investors
Ningwei Qin – forkast
Hong Kong-based digital asset trading platform OSL has started selling security tokens to institutional investors via a private placement, with the first purchasers including blockchain game company Animoca Brands, according to a press release on Tuesday.

KuCoin dismisses rumors, eyes India for growth: report
Pradipta Mukherjee – forkast
Cryptocurrency exchange KuCoin has “no exposure to LUNA & wLUNA,” and its recent fundraising “has nothing to do with the market downtrend,” the firm’s CEO said on his verified Twitter handle.

Here’s how much money you would’ve lost if you bought crypto during Matt Damon’s ‘Fortune Favors the Brave’ commercial
Weston Blasi – MarketWatch
Remember when Matt Damon told you, “Fortune favors the brave”? Well, Twitter users do, and many of them are bringing up the viral ad, while prices for cryptocurrency like bitcoin and ether are slumping, and crypto exchange platforms like Coinbase are losing billions in market cap. The commercial, which debuted on October 28, 2021 and was replayed again during the Super Bowl, has now been viewed 9 million times on Twitter and over 18 million times on YouTube.

Celsius and BitConnect: Not So Different?
David Z Morris – CoinDesk
Over the past few days, I’ve been revisiting the story of the massive 2016-2018 crypto scam BitConnect for an upcoming project. One of my surprising takeaways is that, though BitConnect was a shady global network organized by anonymous masterminds and without any formal legal structure, in many ways it operated similarly to Celsius Network, the U.S.-domiciled corporate lending platform that recently froze customer withdrawals and then declared bankruptcy.

Coinbase SEC Probe Into Listed Tokens Has Crypto Traders Rattled
Lydia Beyoud and Allyson Versprille – Bloomberg
The US Securities and Exchange Commission’s scrutiny of digital currencies that are listed on Coinbase Global Inc. is igniting concerns that a major crackdown for the rest of the industry is imminent. Digital coins are headed for a losing week, dragged down by the revelation that the SEC has been investigating whether Coinbase shirked regulations by offering trading in certain tokens. Anxieties were already running high after the regulator took the unusual step of identifying several crypto assets that it considered to be securities as part of an insider trading case.

Inside Reblium’s Quest for the Perfect Digital Clone With Founder Mao Lin Liao
Ahmed A. Mansour – DeCential
In a perfect metaverse, what will it take to create a realistic human-like avatar? A brain, a voice, and a body. “Google is working on the brain, others are working on the voice, and I am taking on the face and body,” Mao Lin Liao, the founder and chief executive officer of Reblium, recently said to me. For the past 20 years, the 43-years-old entrepreneur has been working in animation and marketing. He created visual effects for Jackie Chan’s Around the World in 80 Days, artwork for video game studios and collaborated with top fashion brands. But it wasn’t enough.

Crypto Trades Drive Naira to New Low in Unauthorized Market; Nigerians piling into crypto due to low confidence in naira; Naira to dollar rates now tracking crypto exchange rates
Emele Onu – Bloomberg
Nigerians accumulating cryptocurrencies to shield assets against a weakening naira have contributed to a slump in the fiat currency to a record low in the unauthorized market. The naira weakened to 670 per dollar on Wednesday said Abubakar Mohammed, an operator of a bureau de change that tracks the data in Lagos, the nation’s commercial hub. This compares with 424.34 naira at the official spot market as of 9.22 a.m. local time, 58% cheaper than the rate in the black market, where the greenback is freely traded.

An NFT Art Gallery and Genever Bar Is Coming to North Park; Botanica will open on University Avenue by late summer
Candice Woo – Eater San Diego
Joining an emerging NFT boom in the hospitality sector, with restaurants revolving around non-fungible tokens (NFTs) in the works for San Francisco and New York City, is Botanica, a new North Park bar that’ll also function as a gallery and marketplace for digital art.

‘Utterly tasteless and gross’ NFT that evokes tragic 9/11 Falling Man is REMOVED from GameStop’s marketplace after two weeks on sale
Ronny Reyes –
GameStop’s NFT marketplace took down an NFT that clearly resembles the harrowing ‘9/11 Falling Man,’ who hurled himself out of the World Trade Center to escape the burning building. The tasteless NFT, created by an artist known as Jules, features the GameStop astronaut mascot falling with the same pose and background as that of the 9/11 victim who has not been officially identified. The NFT was up on GameStop’s fledgling market place for two weeks and was minted 25 times on July 12, originally on sale for $991 before dropping down to $46, Gizmodo reported. GameStop said the NFT had been taken out ‘entirely’ from the marketplace and had revoked the artist’s ability to mint any future NFTs.

Alameda Research Leads $3.25M Seed Round for Trustless Media; The New York-based company lets creators tokenize TV productions with NFTs.
Eli Tan – CoinDesk
Web3 media company Trustless Media raised a $3.25 million in a seed funding round that was led by Sam Bankman-Fried’s Alameda Research with participation from Ava Labs and Red DAO, according to a press release. Bankman-Fried is a billionaire who co-founded the FTX crypto exchange. Trustless works with content creators and organizations to help them tokenize their TV shows using non-fungible tokens, or NFTs. Shows can use the NFT model partly to crowdfund productions with holders who receive access to watch the token-gated content and who can participate in productions with on-chain voting. The New York-based company is testing its own mission statement with the release of “Coinage,” a Web3 TV show that critically examines the crypto industry.


DeSantis announces plan to combat ESG influence in Florida; Sri Lanka, Holland and Canada are all bending to environmental governance.
Charles Creitz – Fox News
The Florida State Pension System will now be under a “flat ban” against incorporating the globalist ESG platform into its investments, Gov. Ron DeSantis announced on Fox News Wednesday. DeSantis told “Tucker Carlson Tonight” the proponents of ESG – which places what its supporters say are environmentally-necessary regulations – like to “wiggle around” definitions and verbiage to supersede the purely fiduciary responsibilities of fund managers.

New Bill Could Allow Americans To Buy Coffee With Crypto Tax-Exempt
Jason Brett – Forbes
Thanks to a new bipartisan bill introduced in the U.S. Senate yesterday by Senator Toomey (R-PA) and Senator Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), Americans may be able to buy coffee with crypto without triggering a taxable event. The Virtual Currency Tax Fairness Act provides a de minimis exemption for gains of less than $50 on personal transactions and for personal transactions under $50.

Governor Ron DeSantis Announces Initiatives to Protect Floridians from ESG Financial Fraud
Staff of Governor Ron DeSantis
Today, Governor Ron DeSantis announced legislative proposals and administrative actions to protect Floridians from the environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) movement which threatens the vitality of the American economy and Americans’ economic freedom by targeting disfavored individuals and industries to advance a woke ideological agenda.

Trudeau Spars With Farmers on Climate Plan Risking Grain Output; Canada wants to cut fertilizer emissions, but farmers say it could result in less food
Jen Skerritt – Bloomberg
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s push to accelerate the fight against climate change is sparking a showdown with the nation’s farmers, who say it’s threatening food supplies — and their profits. The government is proposing to cut emissions from fertilizer 30% by 2030 as part of a plan to get to net zero in the next three decades. But growers are saying that to achieve that, they may have to shrink grain output significantly at a time when the world is scrambling for more supplies. Also at stake is the estimated C$10.4 billion ($8.08 billion) that farmers could lose this decade from the reduced output.

Energy on Agenda as Saudi Crown Prince to Meet Macron; Talks in Paris follow Macron visit to kingdom last year; President has bolstered France’s ties to Gulf Arab countries
Vivian Nereim and Samy Adghirni – Bloomberg
Discussions on energy are expected to top the agenda as Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman meets French President Emmanuel Macron in Paris on Thursday. As European countries seek alternatives to Russian energy amid war in Ukraine, the two leaders are likely to discuss Saudi Arabia’s role in oil markets as the world’s largest crude exporter. They’re set to have dinner Thursday night at the Elysee Palace, with energy a key theme on the agenda, an official familiar with the discussions said.


South Korea probes $3.1bn crypto-linked forex transactions; Regulators investigate ‘abnormal’ currency deals at Woori Bank and Shinhan Bank
Song Jung-a – FT
South Korean regulators are investigating $3.1bn worth of “abnormal” foreign exchange transactions at two of the country’s biggest commercial banks for possible money laundering linked to crypto investments. Unusual currency transactions worth Won4.1tn ($3.1bn) have taken place at two Korean banks — Woori Bank and Shinhan Bank — since February 2021, the Financial Supervisory Service said on Wednesday.

Opening Statement of Chairman Rostin Behnam for July 27, 2022 Open Meeting
Rostin Behnam – CFTC
Good morning and welcome. In some respects, today’s open meeting is a historic event. It is the first open meeting to be held in person at the Commission in almost two and a half years, since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is also the first open meeting to be held with all five Commissioners since December 2020. Perhaps most notably, it is the first open meeting with our history-making CFTC Commissioners. At a time when many across the country have dispensed with the formalities of office-life, these public meetings seem to be a sharp contrast to our current day-to-day operations. However, these formalities should serve as a fresh reminder of the importance of the work we do as a full Commission and who we are here for: the American public. On that note, I am honored to be here today as Chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, at this dais, working closely and collaboratively with my colleagues and providing the public a direct view into the critical work we do.

Opening Statement of Commissioner Kristin N. Johnson Regarding Open Meeting of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission
At the start of the first open meeting of this historic Commission, with a full complement of five Commissioners, I am pleased to offer this opening statement. I am humbled by President Biden’s decision to nominate me and the U.S. Senate’s confirmation of my nomination. It is a privilege to serve our nation during this transformational moment in the history and development of our financial markets.

Statement of Commissioner Christy Goldsmith Romero Regarding the Proposal for Strong Capital Requirements and Financial Reporting for Swap Dealers in Japan
I support the Commission’s efforts for strong capital requirements and financial reporting to help ensure the safety and soundness of swap dealers whose activities could affect U.S. markets, including through this proposed Capital Comparability Determination for Japan. The proposal promotes financial stability and the benefits of global harmonization with a like-minded regulator for the global swaps markets. Thank you to the staff for their hard work, and for their thoughtful engagement with me and my office on changes to improve the proposal.

Statement of Commissioner Summer K. Mersinger Regarding Open Meeting on July 27, 2022
It is hard to describe how humbling it is to sit on the dais at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC or Commission) today among this distinguished group and where many extraordinary individuals have sat before us. When I first walked into this room three years ago and witnessed the collegial debate and deliberation that occurred on this dais during Open Meetings, I honestly did not imagine that one day my name would be on this placard and I would occupy this seat. But we do not always know the destination when we first step onto a new path. There are four wonderful individuals seated up here with me whom I have had the good fortune to get to know along this path, as well as the dedicated CFTC staff, including the teams we will hear from today.

CFTC Approves a Proposed Rule and a Proposed Order and Request for Comment
Today, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission voted in favor of advancing two proposals. The first is a proposed rule on governance requirements for derivatives clearing organizations (DCOs). The second is a proposed order and a request for comment on an application for capital comparability determination submitted by the Financial Services Agency of Japan.

Statement of Gerri Walsh, President, FINRA Investor Education Foundation; and Senior Vice President, FINRA Investor Education Before the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs
Chairman Brown, Ranking Member Toomey and Members of the Committee:
On behalf of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and the FINRA Investor Education Foundation (FINRA Foundation)1, I want to thank you for the opportunity to appear today to discuss various risks facing investors and savers in today’s securities and crypto markets. The financial and non-financial consequences for victims of fraud can be devastating, and it is critical that we work together to address this ongoing threat. FINRA’s mission is to protect investors and promote market integrity, and accordingly FINRA and the FINRA Foundation have dedicated significant resources to combatting fraud. My testimony will focus on FINRA’s regulatory work and the research, outreach and educational initiatives that FINRA and the FINRA Foundation have underway to help both novice and advanced investors establish sound financial practices, follow pathways to investing and retirement readiness, and avoid fraud and costly mistakes.

SEC Small Business Advisory Committee to Discuss Liquidity Challenges for Investors in Small and Emerging Businesses
The Securities and Exchange Commission’s Small Business Capital Formation Advisory Committee today released the agenda for its virtual meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 2, which will address liquidity challenges for investors in small and emerging businesses.
The Committee, which provides advice and recommendations to the Commission on rules, regulations, and policy matters relating to small businesses, will start the morning session with updates from committee members on challenges and opportunities for small business capital formation as a result of current economic conditions.

SEC Charges JPMorgan, UBS, and TradeStation for Deficiencies Relating to the Prevention of Customer Identity Theft
The Securities and Exchange Commission today separately charged J.P. Morgan Securities LLC, UBS Financial Services Inc., and TradeStation Securities, Inc. for deficiencies in their programs to prevent customer identity theft, in violation of the SEC’s Identity Theft Red Flags Rule, or Regulation S-ID.
According to the SEC’s orders, from at least January 2017 to October 2019, the firms’ identity theft prevention programs did not include reasonable policies and procedures to identify relevant red flags of identity theft in connection with customer accounts or to incorporate those red flags into their programs. In addition, the SEC’s orders find that the firms’ programs did not include reasonable policies and procedures to respond appropriately to detected identity theft red flags, or to ensure that the programs were updated periodically to reflect changes in identity theft risks to customers.

Prepared Remarks at Center for Audit Quality “Sarbanes-Oxley at 20: The Work Ahead”
Thank you for the kind introduction. It’s good to be with the Center for Audit Quality. As is customary, I’d like to note I am speaking on behalf of myself and not on behalf of the Commission or the SEC staff.
Chair Gary Gensler – SEC
As I open my remarks today, I’d like to discuss a speech from a different summertime conference — one that took place 133 years ago.
In June 1889, the statistician Carroll D. Wright spoke at the Convention of Commissioners of Bureaus of Statistics of Labor in Hartford, Connecticut.[1] (To be clear, I wasn’t there.)

SEC Charges Former Chief Petty Officer with Fraud in Investment Scheme That Targeted U.S. Navy Veterans and Sailors
The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced charges against Robert L. Murray, Jr., a former U.S. Navy chief petty officer, for engaging in a fraudulent investment scheme that used Facebook to target Navy veterans, reservists, and active-duty Sailors.

SEC Charges Former CFO and Coo with Falsifying Books and Records and Circumventing Internal Controls to Misappropriate Funds
The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced it was charging Frank Okunak, the former Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer of a subsidiary of a public global advertising and marketing company, with falsifying books and records and circumventing accounting controls to misappropriate more than $16 million for his benefit.

SEC Charges Former Chief Petty Officer with Fraud in Investment Scheme That Targeted U.S. Navy Veterans and Sailors
The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced charges against Robert L. Murray, Jr., a former U.S. Navy chief petty officer, for engaging in a fraudulent investment scheme that used Facebook to target Navy veterans, reservists, and active-duty Sailors.

ASIC enforcement and regulatory update April to June 2022
ASIC – Australian Securities and Investments Commission
ASIC has released its enforcement and regulatory update for 1 April to 30 June 2022 (REP 733).
During the quarter, we continued to focus on discharging our regulatory and enforcement responsibilities and launched litigation against misconduct.
We took action in the Federal Court against entities where we allege that Australian consumers were misled or charged excessive fees.

FMA review of ethical investing claims in managed funds
FMA (New Zealand)
The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) – Te Mana Tatai Hokohoko has completed a review of 14 KiwiSaver and other managed funds to establish how well they are applying the FMA’s integrated financial product (IFP) guidance.
The review was conducted against a backdrop of FMA research that found retail investors find it difficult to make informed decisions about ethical investing.

Remarks by Mr Ravi Menon, Managing Director, MAS, ‘From Green Finance to Transition Finance’, at the MAS Sustainability Report 2021/2022 Media Conference on 28 July 2022
Monetary Authority of Singapore
Good morning and thank you for joining us today at the launch of MAS’ sustainability report 2022.
High quality sustainability disclosure is critical to managing environmental risks and allocating capital to climate risk mitigation.

Investing and Trading

The 100 Wealthiest Americans Lost $622 Billion Since November; But they’re still a lot richer than they were before the pandemic.
Dorothy Gambrell and Devon Pendleton – Bloomberg
In the early days of the pandemic, when markets plunged and 22 million Americans lost their jobs, Congress and the Federal Reserve sprang into action to stabilize an economy at risk of buckling. After trillions of dollars of Covid-19 relief cash and a monsoon of cheap federally sponsored loans, US households are sitting on record savings. But no group benefited more than the one needing the least assistance: the ultrarich. What’s responsible for those lopsided gains is the vastly different composition of net worth among America’s wealth tiers. Shares of stocks and mutual funds made up more than a third of the fortunes of the richest Americans at the onset of the pandemic. That meant the top 1% enjoyed substantial upside as stocks soared because of the stimulus and investor enthusiasm for anything that stood to gain from the shift to remote work and the changing spending patterns of locked-down consumers. The upside for the bottom 50%, who owned virtually no stocks, was nil.

Powell Smartly Swears Off Guidance But Then Doles Some Out; Even so, markets weren’t listening closely, or traders opted to hear what they wanted to hear.
Jonathan Levin – Bloomberg
Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell made waves in financial markets Wednesday by saying that rate increases will eventually slow and that he will refrain from “clear guidance” on the path of future ones. That contributed to the huge rally in stocks and bonds Wednesday, with the Nasdaq Composite Index posting its biggest jump since April 2020. The funny thing is, Powell actually did provide quite a bit of forward guidance in his press conference after the central bank’s rate decision — traders just opted to ignore it.

The Strong Dollar Is Wreaking Havoc Globally — And It’s Just Getting Started; Dollar propelled higher by Fed hikes, fear of global recession; ‘No kryptonite’ to blow up greenback’s strength any time soon
Ruth Carson and Cormac Mullen – Bloomberg
George Boubouras was at his home in east Melbourne, taking in a cricket match, when his phone suddenly blew up. It was late on July 13, about 10:45 p.m., and there was an urgency to the texts and calls that came flooding in. The euro had just crashed through parity against the dollar, a level once almost unthinkable, and everyone — clients, fund managers, traders — wanted to know what Boubouras, the head of research at K2 Asset Management, recommend they do. His response was simple: “Don’t fight the dollar right now.”

More ranchers than usual are selling their cattle. Here’s why
Don Lemon – CNN
A combination of supply chain issues, extreme heat, and drought conditions are forcing farmers to sell their cattle, which could cause higher beef prices for consumers. CNN’s Ed Lavandera reports.

From avocados to coffee, some food costs are starting to ease but prices are still high
Su-Lin Tan – CNBC
Prices of some food items like cooking oil, coffee and avocado are starting to drop though they still remain relatively high, the latest food price data shows. Supply chain disruption is still affecting the market, and driving up the prices of many products.

Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance

More sovereign wealth funds adopt a formal ESG policy – study
Simon Jessop – Reuters
75% of SWFs have a policy, up from 46% in 2017; 30% have set a carbon emissions target; More looking to back ‘Impact’ investing projects
Three quarters of the world’s sovereign wealth funds now have a formal policy on environmental, social and governance investing, yet just 30% have set a target to reduce carbon emissions across their investments, a study on Wednesday showed. The policy move comes as institutions increasingly look to position for the shift to a low-carbon economy in the fight against climate change, and is up from 46% five years ago, the latest Invesco Global Sovereign Asset Management Study showed.

Moody’s ‘Controversial’ Way to Weed Out ESG Offenders; Companies involved in energy, natural resources and construction must manage the environmental consequences of their operations and the associated dangers for people and communities.
Tim Quinson –
Toxic emissions. Wastewater discharge leaks. Child labor. Indigenous rights violations. Bribery. Fraud. Apart from the damage wrought upon individuals, communities and the environment, these are the kinds of corporate wrongdoing that can trigger statistically significant negative financial consequences for companies. Examples include Volkswagen AG’s 2015 emissions scandal, the 2019 collapse of Vale SA’s Brumadinho dam that killed 270 people, or this year’s reports of alleged mistreatment of elderly residents at Orpea SA’s retirement homes. In the world of ESG investing, such calamitous instances of alleged malfeasance and the lasting reputational damage they can bring have been given the anodyne label of “controversies.”

ESG Reports Aren’t a Replacement for Real Sustainability
Tensie Whelan – Harvard Business Review
Many corporate leaders are growing frustrated that their ESG efforts are not being rewarded in capital markets. But that’s because they are focusing on reporting more than on doing sustainability. Can companies embed sustainability and make it a source of competitive advantage? Yes, but only if they make it part of strategy. To do that they should undertake SWOT analyses through a sustainability lens, look specifically for material ESG issues that are resulting in risks and opportunities for the company, and then undertake and track return on sustainable investment, setting benchmarks and tracking financial performance over time.

Why It’s So Hard For Companies To Get ESG Right
Steve Culp – Forbes
Environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors in business management are complex, multi-dimensional and continuously evolving. So, it is not surprising that companies face challenges in understanding ESG, its potential impact on their businesses, and how best to integrate ESG with existing business needs. ESG is not going away, however, and the time to deal responsibly and effectively with ESG risk is now. This is especially true as investors are increasingly ready to commit to companies that take ESG seriously. Regulators, in parallel, are working towards a more consistent, comprehensive global framework, with the SEC, the ISSB and EFRAG all working on new standards.

Europe’s Heat Waves Force Shift Back to Coal and Natural Gas; Record temperatures and lack of rainfall are making rivers low and hot, interfering with hydroelectric and nuclear power generation
Nick Kostov and Sam Schechner – WSJ
This summer’s intense heat waves in Europe are helping make a bad energy problem worse. High temperatures, combined with low rainfall in many parts of Europe, are both boosting demand for power and making some of it—particularly hydroelectric and nuclear power—more difficult to generate. That is forcing utilities to burn more coal and gas to keep up, complicating the continent’s efforts to cut back on Russian natural gas as Russian President Vladimir Putin is slowly turning off the spigot.

Japanese Insurers Sell Heatstroke Coverage During Sizzling Summer; Same-day plan lets people opt in based on morning forecast; Europe to Asia see temperatures hit record highs this summer
Kaori Kohyama – Bloomberg
As temperatures soar to unprecedented levels from Europe to Asia this summer, some Japanese insurance companies have begun selling policies to protect people struck down by the heatwave. Sompo Holdings Inc. and Sumitomo Life Insurance Co., two of the country’s biggest insurers, are offering policies specifically designed to cover medical expenses arising from heatstroke.

Hidden Menace: Massive Methane Leaks Speed Up Climate Change
Michael Biesecker, Helen Wieffering – AP
To the naked eye, the Mako Compressor Station outside the dusty West Texas crossroads of Lenorah appears unremarkable, similar to tens of thousands of oil and gas operations scattered throughout the oil-rich Permian Basin. What’s not visible through the chain-link fence is the plume of invisible gas, primarily methane, billowing from the gleaming white storage tanks up into the cloudless blue sky.


Qontigo and CEPRES partner to provide risk modeling solutions for private market assets
Qontigo, a global leader in risk analytics and index solutions, has partnered with CEPRES, the leader in private market investment technology and data, to develop a suite of private market factor risk models for unique insights into private capital fund risk in multi-asset class portfolios.

Credit Suisse turns to ‘Uli the knife’ to cut bank loose from scandal; Ulrich Körner faces daunting task as CEO following years of crises that have shredded lender’s shares
Stephen Morris, Arash Massoudi and Owen Walker – FT
Credit Suisse directors last month made the trek up the Swiss Alps for their annual off-site gathering in the spa town of Bad Ragaz, famous for its healing waters. After a bruising few years in which the bank lurched from crisis to crisis, chair Axel Lehmann and the board had finally decided on a turnround plan. The only question remaining was who would drive that change. They had concluded that chief executive Thomas Gottstein, who had his own health problems, was no longer the right man for the job.

Credit Suisse’s Worst Trading First-Half in Decades Augurs Cuts
Donal Griffin – Bloomberg
Credit Suisse Group AG’s traders posted their worst first-half results in more than two decades, setting the stage for an overhaul that’s likely to see the lender’s trading heft shrink further. Revenues in both fixed income and equity sales and trading businesses were both down about a third in the second quarter, the Swiss bank said Wednesday. The trading businesses produced $2.3 billion of revenue in the first half, the lowest this century. The results mean Ulrich Koerner, who is replacing outgoing Chief Executive Officer Thomas Gottstein, is set to accelerate an ongoing overhaul of the unit. The aim: an investment bank that uses less capital and is more advisory-led and tied to its wealth franchise.

US banks’ Brexit gambit hit by EU cross-border ban; US firms trying to Brexit-proof their European operations could now be hit by CRD VI
Samuel Wilkes –
The UK’s departure from the European Union and single market forced US banks to move their pieces around the chessboard in Europe. New EU subsidiaries were supposed to shield US banks from the fallout of Brexit and the UK’s exit from the single market. Until recently, it looked like mission accomplished.

Schroders Assets Hit New High as Investors Pour In More Cash; Assets rose to £773.4 billion in the first half of the year; Inflows into the business totaled a net £8.4 billion
Loukia Gyftopoulou – Bloomberg
Schroders Plc saw its asset under management reach a new high in the first half of the year as investors poured more cash into its funds despite sharp falls in equity and bond markets. Its shares rose. Assets rose to £773.4 billion ($942 billion) in the six-month period, the firm said in a statement Thursday, beating a consensus forecast of £742 billion by analysts polled by Bloomberg. The firm saw net inflows of £8.4 billion, by far beating analyst estimates of £1.7 billion.

Barclays Earnings Miss as Legal Costs Overshadow Trading Jump; British bank takes £1.3 billion litigation and conduct charge; Barclays also agrees to settle US probe on electronic messages
Stefania Spezzati – Bloomberg
Barclays Plc’s profit fell more than expected in the second quarter after it booked charges and penalties in the US, marring a strong period for the bank’s bond traders. The British lender said a market plunge would increase the cost of buying back U.S. investment products it mistakenly oversold. Barclays also expects to pay $200 million in penalties to the US regulators to settle a long-running probe into unapproved messaging channels used by staff.

Barclays sets aside $1.6 billion for trading blunder
Paul Clarke – MarketWatch
Barclays BARC, -4.34% put £1.3bn ($1.6 bn) aside to cover a trading blunder, hitting second-quarter profits within its corporate and investment bank despite a surge in trading revenue. The UK lender announced an additional £1.3bn for “expected rescission costs” during the second quarter after it mistakenly sold billions more of its own securities than it meant to, an error which it revealed in April.

These ETFs Promise Protection in a Down Market. It’s Working.
Debbie Carlson – Barron’s
Investors who are worried about the stock market declining, and who don’t mind limiting potential upside gains, can consider a new breed of exchange-traded funds called defined-outcome ETFs.

Former BlackRock executive joins Jacobi Asset Management as CEO
Jacobi Asset Management
Jacobi Asset Management (Jacobi), a pioneer in next-generation digital asset investment management, announces the appointment of Martin Bednall as its new CEO, effective 1st August 2022. Bednall will also continue in his role at FinEx Capital Management. Martin’s predecessor, Jamie Khurshid, will step into a new role as Chairman of the Board while current Chairman Roy McGregor remains as a Director. McGregor also holds the position of Chairman of Jacobi Investment Funds PCC Limited.

Wellness Exchange

The Chinese Megacity Where Masks Are Rare and Clubs Are Packed; Masks are rare, clubs are packed and tourism is booming; Threat of lockdown hangs over city, after sporadic Covid cases
President Xi Jinping’s Covid Zero strategy has become notorious internationally for its grueling lockdowns. But in the southwestern megacity Chongqing, signs of China’s signature pandemic policy disrupting daily life are hard to find. Tourists snapped selfies at an ancient fortress while hundreds of partygoers packed into a gay bar this week, with barely a mask in sight. Ride-hailing-app users hopped into Didi Global Inc. cars to escape the city’s 40-degree Celsius (104 Fahrenheit) heat wave without scanning contact-tracing apps, unlike in Beijing. Domestic travelers poured into the city, which mostly doesn’t require quarantine on arrival.

New studies suggest Covid-19 likely originated from Wuhan wet market
Two recent studies have concluded that the earliest human coronavirus cases in Wuhan, China, all had a direct connection to the Huanan Seafood Market. CNN’s Steven Jiang has more.

A New Covid Shot from Novavax Will Test Americans’ Appetite for Vaccines
Fiona Rutherford – Bloomberg
It’s been two-and-half years since the outbreak of Covid-19, and Novavax is just joining the US vaccine drive. The bio-tech company based near Washington, D.C., took longer than others to develop its shot, slowed by manufacturing delays. But last week the government finally gave clearance to distribute its Covid-19 vaccine. Is that likely to make any difference so late in the pandemic? Millions of Americans have already been vaccinated with Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson’s shots. Those who are left are mostly people who don’t want a vaccine.

How Much Rest Do You Really Need When You Get Covid-19?; Even if you are vaccinated, boosted and healthy, it can take up to a month to fully recover
Sumathi Reddy – WSJ
Many people feel the urge to power through after testing positive for Covid-19. President Biden recently told Americans he was “getting a lot of work done” after testing positive and tweeted a photo of himself signing a bill at his desk. Doctors say it is important to rest, even for people with mild to moderate cases of the virus. Some doctors worry that as we get more inured to the pandemic, some people with symptoms aren’t taking enough down time. Pushing yourself too hard can lengthen your recovery, they say, adding that the healing trajectory for Covid-19 is less predictable than for other respiratory illnesses. Many people with mild cases feel better in about a week. But even if you are vaccinated, boosted and in good health, it can take up to a month to fully recover to your pre-Covid baseline, both cognitively and physically, some doctors say, including for people who don’t experience especially severe symptoms. Symptoms like fatigue, dry cough and brain fog can linger for weeks.

Two HIV Patients Appear to Have Beaten Virus, Offering Hope for Cure; A 66-year-old man and a woman in her 70s who beat HIV will help researchers in search for cure for virus that causes AIDS
Betsy McKay – WSJ
A 66-year-old man in Southern California and a woman in her 70s in Spain are the latest in a small group of people who appear to have beaten their HIV infections, providing researchers new clues to a possible cure at a time when Covid-19 and other crises are slowing progress against the spreading virus. Doctors caring for the man said they haven’t found any human immunodeficiency virus that can replicate in his body since he stopped antiretroviral drug therapy in March 2021 after a transplant of stem cells containing a rare genetic mutation that blocks HIV infection. He was given the transplant for leukemia, for which people with HIV are at increased risk. Details of his case were made public Wednesday and will be presented at a large international AIDS conference in Montreal that opens Friday.

Hong Kong Covid Adviser Says Shots Safe, Effective for Toddlers
Jinshan Hong – Bloomberg
Hong Kong should make Covid-19 vaccines available for children under the age of three as soon as possible, as shots from BioNTech SE and Sinovac Biotech Ltd. safely and effectively protect them against the virus, a vaccination adviser to the government said. Hong Kong’s Covid-19 expert advisory panel will discuss toddler vaccination next week, said Lau Yu-lung, who is the chairman of the Scientific Committee on Vaccine Preventable Diseases. While the issue needs to be thoroughly discussed by the panel, he said he plans to do his best to convey his opinion.


Social Media Scam Artists Prey on India’s Amateur Investors; Stock tips, trading calls lure young investor for quick buck; Indian regulator clamping down on social media platforms
Dhwani Pandya and Adrija Chatterjee – Bloomberg
India’s mom-and-pop investors are facing testing times. During a pandemic-era surge in the stock market, millions poured their savings into equities, drawing on advice from unauthorized financial advisers and social media “gurus” to help identify the next big ticket. But a recent slide in stock values has laid bare the dangers of India’s lax capital market regulations. Many amateur retail investors, especially the young, sought to make a quick buck by consulting informal groups on platforms like WhatsApp and Telegram. Recourse for investments gone awry is limited: In India, fines for everything from insider trading to wire fraud are a fraction of those imposed in some western nations.

Asia’s Richest Woman Loses Half Her Fortune in Property Crisis; Yang Huiyan, who became China’s wealthiest woman at age 25, is at risk of losing her top spot as Country Garden’s stock tumbles.
Venus Feng – Bloomberg
To understand the magnitude of China’s escalating mortgage crisis, look no further than Yang Huiyan. Heading into this year, the Country Garden Holdings Co. co-chairman was far and away Asia’s richest woman. Her $23.7 billion fortune easily eclipsed that of fellow Chinese billionaires Fan Hongwei and Wu Yajun, both worth around $13 billion at the time, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

Bangladesh Probes Money Changers as Foreign Reserves Dwindle; Move comes after nation sought financial assistance from IMF; Financial institutions asked to implement austerity measures
Arun Devnath and Ruchi Bhatia – Bloomberg
Bangladesh’s central bank is guarding against currency speculation amid declining dollar reserves, while simultaneously imposing austerity measures on the nation’s financial institutions. Bangladesh Bank deployed 10 teams in Dhaka to inspect foreign currency transactions after some money changers charged as much as 112 taka per dollar on Tuesday, central bank spokesman Serajul Islam said by phone. That compares with the interbank exchange rate of 94.7 taka against the greenback Wednesday.

India to Restart Ukraine Sunflower Oil Imports as Trade Eases
Pratik Parija – Bloomberg
India, the world’s biggest edible oil importer, will likely receive its first shipments of sunflower oil from Ukraine starting in September after a five-month gap, according to Sunvin Group. About 50,000 to 60,000 tons may arrive as Ukraine is set to open some Black Sea corridors for agricultural exports, said Sandeep Bajoria, chief executive officer of the Mumbai-based broker and trader. The cargoes will likely be loaded at the seaports of Odesa and Chornomorsk, he added.

Lukas Lundin, Swedish-Canadian Mining Tycoon, Dies at 64; Founder of Lundin Mining had 2-year battle with brain cancer; CEO cites ‘extraordinary strategic foresight’ in firm’s gains
Ana Paula Barreto Pereira – Bloomberg
Lukas Henrik Lundin, the Swedish-Canadian billionaire who founded Lundin Mining Corp., died Tuesday after a two-year battle with brain cancer. He was 64. He started Lundin Mining with his father in the mid-1990s and was a board member and chairman for more than 25 years until he stepped down in May. The Toronto-based company confirmed Lundin’s death Wednesday in a statement. “The many successes of Lundin Mining and the Lundin Group owe directly to Lukas’ extraordinary strategic foresight, matched only by his relentless drive,” Chief Executive Officer Peter Rockandel said in the statement. “His guidance and support for his colleagues will be deeply missed, however, his pursuit and vision of creating a world-class base metals company lives on.”

British Gas Owner’s Profit Jumps As Customers Face Soaring Energy Bills; Higher energy prices boosts income from upstream assets; Earnings from supplying customers plunges as margins squeezed
Rachel Morison – Bloomberg
Centrica Plc, the owner of British Gas, resumed dividend payments for the first time since the start of the pandemic as profits from selling oil and natural gas rose sixfold. Adjusted operating profit climbed to £857 million ($1 billion) as the company’s North Sea business and its stake in the UK’s nuclear fleet benefited from soaring gas and power prices. The payout to shareholders could draw political backlash as energy bills continue to soar.

TotalEnergies Extends Share Buyback as Profit Hits Record; French major to repurchase $2 billion in 3Q, same as in 2Q; Refining margins reached record-high levels, CEO Pouyanne says
Francois De Beaupuy – Bloomberg
TotalEnergies SE will extend its $2 billion buyback program into the third quarter after profit surged to a record, propelled by surging gasoline prices and soaring demand for natural gas in Europe. The French company earnings come at the start of a reporting season that’s likely to see major energy firms together rack up unprecedented profit after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine drove natural gas prices higher and oil past $100 a barrel. But the scale of the earnings are also drawing attention of politicians who want higher taxes on these firms to ease the pain of surging inflation on consumers.


Return-to-Office Strategies to Avoid Being There All the Time; These hacks will help you work from home more effectively—and more often.
Arianne Cohen – Bloomberg
Employees have gotten accustomed to working from anywhere they want, but companies are increasingly insisting they return to the office. That’s not sitting well with everyone. “Some of us really do not want to go back just for the sake of being in the office,” says Andrei Kurtuy, co-founder and chief communications officer at CV builder Novorésumé. He minimizes his in-office days by working ahead, arranging virtual meetings, and—counterintuitively—planning regular office days. Here are eight ways to spend less time in the office.

Hamptons Home Prices Hit a Record in Pandemic Boom’s Last Gasp; A dearth of listings, higher mortgage rates and recession fears are crimping buyer demand.
Jennifer Epstein – Bloomberg
Home prices in New York’s Hamptons continued to reach records in the second quarter, but the market’s pandemic boom days may be coming to an end. The median sales price across the posh Long Island beach towns was $1.6 million, an all-time high and up 14% from a year earlier, according to appraiser Miller Samuel Inc. and brokerage Douglas Elliman Real Estate. For luxury properties — the top 10% — the median soared 31% to $8.5 million.

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The Spread

Volatility Spike Brews in Charts Signaling Test for Equity FOMO

Lead Stories Volatility Spike Brews in Charts Signaling Test for Equity FOMO Akshay Chinchalkar - Bloomberg Rising volatility may be about to test the US stock market's 13% jump from June lows. That's the picture painted by technical charts looking at the Cboe...

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