Fed Effect Stirs Global FX Moves as Mighty Dollar Runs Rampant

Sep 7, 2022

First Read

Hits & Takes
John Lothian & JLN Staff

John is still on vacation. Actually, he is working hard in rehab to recover mobility from his hip surgery. After that he will deserve a vacation.

ABN AMRO is welcoming Nancy Stern to their Chicago team as general counsel & chief of staff.

The National Futures Association has officially kicked off its fall college recruiting season. They are excited to be in person again at most college campuses. They will be holding virtual and in-person campus recruiting events.

The Association of IT Professionals (AITP) has announced its list of 2022 CISO of the Year Nominees. The current list of nominees includes John Woods of R.J. O’Brien, Dan Manley of CME Group, Shaun Khalfan of Discover Financial Services, and Ralston Simmons of William Blair, among many others. AITP is also holding its CIO of the Year Meet the Semi-Finalist Series, Meeting 6 of 6 Wed, today, September 07, in a virtual online event. You can go here for more information.

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 World Federation of Exchanges is sponsoring Ring the Bell for Financial Literacy Oct. 3, 2022, a global call for financial literacy during World Investor Week 2022, which runs Oct.3-Oct.9, 2022. Exchanges around the world are ringing the bell for financial literacy during the initiative by IOSCO that is a week-long, global campaign to raise awareness about the importance of investor education and protection and highlight the various initiatives of securities regulators in these two critical areas. Key themes of IOSCO’s 2022 campaign are investor resilience and sustainable finance. You can learn more about World Investor Week here. ~Sally Duros


MWE SHORT: Johan Toll – Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Blockchain But Were Afraid to Ask

Nasdaq’s Johan Toll became a blockchain expert almost by accident. In April of 2014 he sent an article about blockchain from a Swedish technology magazine around to his business unit, saying, “I think this is something interesting we should start looking into.” A couple of weeks later someone from sales called him and said he had a client who was interested in blockchain, and Toll had to get up to speed fast. He is now in charge of blockchain business development for Nasdaq.

Watch the video »


School district asks parents to let teachers rent rooms: report
Claudia Dimuro – Penn Live
School’s no longer out for summer, and some teachers in a California district are struggling to find affordable housing. As a solution, the district has asked parents to let teachers move in.

**** Imagine being the kid who has his/her teacher living with them. ~JB


California fast-food workers could see their wages reach $22 an hour next year
CBS News
California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Monday signed a nation-leading measure giving more than a half-million fast food workers more power and protections, despite the objections of restaurant owners who warned it would drive up consumers’ costs. The landmark law creates a 10-member Fast Food Council with equal numbers of workers’ delegates and employers’ representatives, along with two state officials, empowered to set minimum standards for wages, hours and working conditions in California.

**** I worked at Burger King in 1983. I earned $2.85/hour ($8.48 inflation adjusted). That said, I was in high school and living with my parents and had no expenses. I’d rather get paid to do nothing (see below). ~JB


Dream job: the Japanese man who gets paid to do nothing
Tom Bateman and Rikako Maruyama – Reuters
Shoji Morimoto has what some would see as a dream job: he gets paid to do pretty much nothing. The 38-year-old Tokyo resident charges 10,000 yen ($71) per booking to accompany clients and simply exist as a companion. “Basically, I rent myself out. My job is to be wherever my clients want me to be and to do nothing in particular,” Morimoto told Reuters, adding that he had handled some 4,000 sessions in the past four years. With a lanky build and average looks, Morimoto now boasts nearly a quarter of a million followers on Twitter, where he finds most of his clients. Roughly a quarter of them are repeat customers, including one who has hired him 270 times.

**** That’s actually not nothing. ~JB


‘The Movie Business Is Not Over,’ Super Agent Ari Emanuel Says
Christopher Palmeri – Bloomberg
Things certainly look rough for movie theaters these days, with ticket sales still well off their pre-pandemic highs and one of the largest chains contemplating a bankruptcy filing. But Ari Emanuel, co-founder of one of the world’s largest talent agencies, strongly disagrees with folks who think cinemas will disappear.

**** I went to a movie a month ago with a friend. He bought the tickets (~ $30) and I bought the popcorn and sodas (~ $30…2x small popcorn and 2x small sodas). Kidjanot. That’s the problem. ~JB


Kim Kardashian’s Latest Business Venture: Private Equity
Laura Cooper – The Wall Street Journal
Kim Kardashian and a former partner at Carlyle Group Inc. are launching a new private-equity firm focused on investing in and building consumer and media businesses. Ms. Kardashian is teaming up with Jay Sammons, who ran consumer investing at Carlyle, to launch SKKY Partners, they said in separate interviews. SKKY will make investments in sectors including consumer products, hospitality, luxury, digital commerce and media as well as consumer-media and entertainment businesses.

**** I can’t even… ~JB


Tuesday’s Top Three
Our top story Tuesday was Qontigo’s press release, Stephane Degroote appointed Global Head of Investable Products Sales for Qontigo. Second was Cboe’s press release about Cboe BIDS Europe Service. And third was our MarketsWiki page for Todd Rich, who is starting a new position in business development at Barchart


MarketsWiki Stats
27,000 pages; 240,588 edits
MarketsWiki Statistics


Lead Stories

Fed Effect Stirs Global FX Moves as Mighty Dollar Runs Rampant
Garfield Clinton Reynolds – Bloomberg
The dollar is steamrolling currencies from Japan to South Africa and the UK as bond market bets on higher-for-longer US rates gave fresh fuel to the greenback’s rally, triggering a vocal pushback from officials in various countries.

Investors Are Forgoing Crash Insurance in Options Market
Eric Wallerstein – The Wall Street Journal
Traders are backing away from bets on a market crash.
The Nations SkewDex, an index that tracks demand for protection against a downward market swing, fell to 57.82 Tuesday, hovering near its lowest levels since the Covid-19 pandemic sent volatility soaring. The S&P 500, on the other hand, has fallen in 10 of the past 14 trading sessions, down 9.1% since Aug. 16, partly on renewed worries about how quickly the Federal Reserve will move to raise interest rates.

With crypto no longer ‘niche,’ the IMF wants regulators to step up
Marco Quiroz-Gutierrez – Fortune
The IMF said in a new report that crypto regulators need to step up. Cryptocurrencies are no longer “niche products,” according to the International Monetary Fund, and regulators need to coordinate a meaningful global response, the agency said in a new report. The report, authored by Aditya Narain, deputy director of the IMF’s monetary and capital markets department, and Marina Moretti, an assistant director in the department, said that the longer it takes for national authorities to coordinate a response to crypto, the more likely it is for regulations to be adopted elsewhere and applied in ways that don’t help, or even harm, consumers in different settings.

US Dollar Pain Spreads Beyond Emerging Economies to Developed Peers (DXY)
Enda Curran and Garfield Clinton Reynolds – Bloomberg
Developed economies are taking a hit from the dollar’s appreciation to multi-decade highs in ways that were once more familiar to their emerging market peers. Fueled by the Federal Reserve’s most aggressive tightening cycle in more than a generation, the stronger greenback is pushing rival currencies lower, driving up the cost of imported goods, constricting financial conditions and feeding inflation in other economies.

Investors Are Pouring Into U.S. Stocks to Avoid Greater Turbulence Overseas
Hardika Singh – The Wall Street Journal
Investors around the world are piling into U.S. stocks, even as they brace for the prospect of a rocky autumn, because they say there’s nowhere better to shelter from the turbulence in global markets. Skyrocketing inflation, worries about a potential recession, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, rising energy prices and new Covid-19 outbreaks have rattled everything from stocks to bonds to commodity prices this year.

Water is now seen as a precious, vital and scarce resource in the global energy sector
Anmar Frangoul – CNBC
The link between energy production and water is of crucial importance and we need to value the latter resource far more going forward, according to the CEO of a leading gas infrastructure firm. The comments from Snam CEO Stefano Venier come at a time when the interconnection between water and energy security has been thrown into sharp relief following a period of high temperatures and significant drought in Europe.

America Is a Rich Death Trap; It’s not just the pandemic. For citizens of a wealthy country, Americans of every age, at every income level, are unusually likely to die, from guns, drugs, cars, our bodies.
Derek Thompson – The Atlantic
Last week, the National Center for Health Statistics alerted Americans to two facts about life and death in the U.S. The first fact was sadly unsurprising: The coronavirus pandemic killed so many people that U.S. life expectancy fell from roughly 79 in 2019 to 76 in 2021—the largest two-year decline in nearly a century. The drop was sharpest among Native Americans and Alaska Natives, whose life expectancy fell to 65, close to the national average during World War II.

California Endures Worst Days Of Severe, Relentless Heat Wave; Temperatures have reached 117 degrees Fahrenheit in parts of the state, which is suffering through a deep drought.
Lydia O’Connor – HuffPost
One of the longest, hottest heat waves in California history continues to beleaguer the state – shattering temperature records and straining an already overtaxed power grid. Meteorologists are warning that Tuesday, the sixth consecutive day of dangerously high temperatures, may bring the worst of a hot spell that’s already broken some daily, monthly and all-time heat records by large margins.

Ukraine Invasion

How Russian Gas in Europe Is Dwindling
Jason Karaian and Karl Russell – The New York Times
Since fighting broke out in Ukraine nearly seven months ago, Russia and Europe have been waging an economic war over energy, one that could have dire consequences for millions of households and businesses across the continent.

Putin calls for review of Ukraine grain deal, accuses West of deception
Pavel Polityuk – Reuters
President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday he wanted to discuss reopening a U.N.-brokered deal that allows Ukraine to export its grain via the Black Sea after accusing Kyiv and the West of using it to deceive developing countries and Russia. Putin’s criticism, which alleged that the deal was delivering grain, fertiliser and other foodstuffs to the European Union and Turkey at the expense of poor countries, is likely to raise fears that the pact could unravel if it cannot be successfully renegotiated.

Exchanges, OTC and Clearing

Cboe to Launch New, Real-Time Canadian Equities Market Data Offering
Cboe Global Markets, Inc. (Cboe: CBOE), a leading provider of global market infrastructure and tradable products, today announces the launch on September 12 of the Cboe One Canada Feed, a new real-time market data solution that provides high-quality Canadian equities reference quote and trade information. Through a single consolidated feed, the Feed will offer a complete and comprehensive view into the Canadian market with coverage of all Canadian stocks and exchange-traded products. The Cboe One Canada Feed is Cboe’s first Canadian data offering following the company’s recent expansion into the country with its acquisitions of NEO, a Toronto-based stock exchange operator, and MATCHNow, Canada’s largest equities alternative trading system (ATS). The new data offering unifies quote, trade, and volume data across four trading venues operated by NEO and MATCHNow, delivering cost-effective, high-quality market data through a single point of access. NEO and MATCHNow combined represent approximately 15 percent of the total equities market share in Canada.

London Stock Exchange Delays Data Centre Migration
Shanny Basar – Markets Media
London Stock Exchange Group is delaying the data centre migration for Millennium trading, TRADEcho and new modularised Group Ticker Plant (GTP) environments. The exchange said in a service announcement: “LSEG is committed to a safe and secure transition to the new data centre for the benefit of our markets and customers. Although we have made good progress in testing and readiness, we have taken the decision to move the go-live implementation date to 18 February 2023 (previously 15 October 2022) to ensure full customer readiness and a seamless migration.”

ASX Group Monthly Activity Report – August 2022
Listings and Capital Raisings
In August 2022, total capital raised was $5.7 billion, down 26% on the previous corresponding period (pcp).

Cboe Global Markets Reports Trading Volume for August 2022
Cboe Global Markets, Inc. (Cboe: CBOE), a leading provider of global market infrastructure and tradable products, today reported August monthly trading volume statistics across its global business lines. The data sheet “Cboe Global Markets Monthly Volume & RPC/Net Revenue Capture Report” contains an overview of certain August trading statistics and market share by business segment, volume in select index products, and RPC/net capture, which is reported on a one-month lag, across business lines.

Farmer sentiment improves, but farmers still concerned about rising costs and inflation
CME Group
The Purdue University/CME Group Ag Economy Barometer farmer sentiment index rose 14 points in August to a reading of 117. The rise in the overall measure of agricultural producer sentiment was driven by increases in both the Index of Current Conditions, which rose 9 points to 118 and the Index of Future Expectations, which climbed 16 points to 116. The Ag Economy Barometer is calculated each month from 400 U.S. agricultural producers’ responses to a telephone survey. This month’s survey was conducted between August 15-19, after USDA released both the August Crop Production and World Agricultural Supply & Demand Estimates reports.

Special Executive Report; SUBJECT: Initial Listing of Four (4) Crude Oil Futures Contracts
CME Group
(SER 9048R supersedes SER 9048 dated September 6, 2022 and is being issued to correct the Listing. Schedule of the Contracts. No other changes have been made to the original SER.) Effective Sunday, October 2, 2022, for trade date Monday, October 3, 2022, and pending all relevant CFTC regulatory review periods, New York Mercantile Exchange, Inc. (“NYMEX” or “Exchange”) will list four (4) crude oil futures contracts as noted in the table below (the “Contracts”) for trading on the CME Globex electronic platform (“CME Globex”) and for submission for clearing via CME ClearPort.

August 2022 figures at Eurex
Interest rate derivatives again show strongest growth (up 31 percent) among listed derivatives in August. Total Repo volumes increase by 94 percent y-o-y. Notional outstanding in OTC overnight index swaps up 122 percent. Total traded derivatives contracts at Eurex grew by 22 percent in August, from 101.4 million to 123.6 million compared to the same month last year. Interest rate derivatives again showed a strong year-on-year growth, up 31 percent from 37.6 million traded contracts to 49.5 million, while index derivatives grew by 25 percent, from 47.0 million traded contracts to 58.7 million. Total contracts traded in equity derivatives fell by 8 percent to 15.3 million.

EEX Group Monthly Volumes – August 2022
Monthly Volume Report, EEX Press Release, Monthly Volume Report
EEX Group reports its August volumes with following highlights: Power: The trading volume on the European Power Spot market amounted to 50.4 TWh in August with the Intraday markets increasing by 13% to a total volume of 10.7 TWh.
The EEX European Power Derivatives market reached a volume of 259.1 TWh which is -17% as against August 2021, but an 7% increase compared with July 2022. EEX reported increases in Italian (+28%) and Belgian (+11%) as well as Dutch Power Futures (+166%), while the latter reached a new monthly record.EEX Japanese power volumes increases by 24% to 877.9 GWh while the US Power Derivatives volume declined by 36%.

How to reduce uncertainty and lower dividend risk in today’s market
In this interview, Amy Borgquist from Goldman Sachs explains the benefits of trading FTSE Total Return Futures vs. regular price return futures. What will be the main considerations in determining whether to use an exchange traded product or an OTC one going forward? Cost, counterparty risk, liquidity, flexibility, product availability, and capital considerations all remain in focus for investors. With that said it is worth noting that the specifics of a number of these parameters are changing. A decade of investment from exchanges into the listed product suite (particularly where there historically has existed a large OTC market with no listed alternative) has resulted in the launching of Dividend Futures, MSCI Futures, and Total Return Futures, amongst others. Capital considerations is another parameter that has seen significant change, with the introduction of Universal Margin Rules (UMR): clients have seen a simplification of their OTC VM largely bringing this in line with listed, and many are now seeing a requirement to post IM on OTC positions.

Euronext announces September 2022 quarterly review results of the AEX® Family
Euronext today announced the results of the quarterly review for the AEX®, AMX®, AScX® and AEX® ESG, which will be implemented after markets close on Friday 16 September 2022 and will be effective from Monday 19 September 2022.

The 3rd Japan-China Capital Markets Forum
The 3rd Japan-China Capital Markets Forum was held online on Wednesday, September 7, 2022 by the Japanese Financial Services Agency (FSA), Japan Exchange Group, Inc. (JPX), the Japan Securities Dealers Association (JSDA), the Investment Trusts Association, Japan (JITA) and Chinese securities regulators and related industry organizations. For details, please refer to the attachment below.

Japan Exchange Group and Shenzhen Stock Exchange Begin Joint Promotional Activities for Japan-China Cross-Border Trading
In line with the Memorandum of Understanding on the establishment of Japan-China ETF Connectivity*1 signed on January 25, 2021, Japan Exchange Group, Inc. (JPX) and Shenzhen Stock Exchange (SZSE) have today started promotional activity on both exchange’s websites as part of their collaboration, agreed as part of this MoU, on promoting ETFs that are using the scheme and on promotional activities aimed at investors in the Japanese and Chinese securities markets. Specifically, both exchanges have created dedicated webpages for market information on the opposite market (including on indices calculated by the opposite exchange group), and have posted video clips and articles on ETFs which use the scheme on their respective educational websites for investors.

Signing of Memorandum with China Financial Futures Exchange to Enhance Derivatives Market Cooperation
Today, Japan Exchange Group, Inc. (JPX) and China Financial Futures Exchange, Co. Ltd. (CFFEX) signed a memorandum of understanding to enhance cooperation in derivatives markets. Henceforth, JPX and CFFEX will actively collaborate on initiatives and promotional activities that encourage the use of derivative products listed on JPX and CFFEX markets for investment activities by market participants in Chinese and Japanese markets, including trades to enhance the liquidity of ETFs listed under the Japan-China ETF Connectivity scheme*.

Nasdaq August 2022 Volumes
Nasdaq (Nasdaq: NDAQ) today reported monthly volumes for August 2022 on its investor relations website. A data sheet showing the monthly volumes and quarterly capture rates can be found.

Market update: August 2022
Market Capitalisation as % of GDP. Market capitalisation closely mimics GDP. The goal of the NZX is to provide businesses with access to capital to fuel their growth and contribution to the economy. We have seen a steady upward trend in total capital raised on market over the past five years. There has been $3.16b in capital raised in August alone, bringing the total year to date to $15.51b.

London Stock Exchange Group Plc Purchase Of Own Shares
Mondo Visione
LSEG announces it has purchased the following number of its voting ordinary shares of 679/86 pence each from Goldman Sachs International (“GSI”) on the London Stock Exchange pursuant to instructions issued by LSEG on 05 August 2022 as part of its share buyback programme, as announced on 05 August 2022.

Trading in US Equity Index Products and Night Session Continues to Grow in August
Taiwan Futures Exchange (TAIFEX) reported a total volume of 28,799,993 contracts with an average daily volume (ADV) of 1,252,174 contracts traded in the month, a decrease of 9.30% year-over-year (YoY) in year-to-date (YTD) volume. Amid staggering growth, YTD volume in Nasdaq-100 Futures and DJIA Futures, grew 86.62% to 922,385 contracts and 24.34% to 629,032 contracts YoY, respectively. In night trading session, the number of contracts traded overnight also rose 43.55% YTD over the same period of 2021, accounting for 29.83% of the market’s total volume. With a steady rise since the start of the year, trading of foreign institutional investors now accounted for 31.82% of the total trading volume YTD, up from 31.58% over the same period of 2021.

Moscow Exchange: Equities Trading For Non-Residents From Friendly Jurisdictions
Mondo Visione
Starting 12 September 2022, non-resident clients from friendly jurisdictions as well as non-residents controlled by Russian legal entities or individuals will be able to trade on the MOEX Equities Market. Such clients will also have access to repo transactions (incl. CCP repo) with equities and bonds. Non-resident clients from unfriendly jurisdictions and controlled by Russian legal entities or individuals will have certain limitations on equity transactions, such as trading in strategic and some other companies.*


Ex-Comptroller Eugene Ludwig Says Unfettered Fintech, Crypto Taking Banks’ Turf
Katherine Doherty and Yueqi Yang – Bloomberg
Fintech and cryptocurrency firms competing with banks but subject to fewer regulations are “getting away with murder,” said Eugene Ludwig, a former Comptroller under the Bill Clinton administration.
These new types of companies that take deposits and provide lending without proper oversight could be the reason for the next recession, Ludwig said during a Tuesday panel at the Clearing House and Bank Policy Institute’s annual conference in New York.

Iress Helps Prime Trading To Reduce Data Latency And Costs
Press release via Mondo Visione
Iress today announced that it has enabled Prime Trading, an industry-leading, privately held, proprietary trading firm, to successfully improve its data quality whilst reducing API data latency and costs. Previously, during peak moments of market volatility, Prime Trading experienced latency issues and network constraints as it consumed tick by tick market data. As part of its commitment to constantly seek out improvements for its end clients, it approached Iress for a solution.

APAC scoops up $41.8B in fintech deals amidst global investment dip
Eileen Yu – ZDNET
Asia-Pacific scooped up $41.8 billion in fintech investments during the first half of the year, amidst a dip in the global figure to $107.8 billion. The payments sector drew the bulk of investments, followed by crypto and blockchain, which raked in $14.2 billion.
Global fintech investments dropped from $111.2 billion in the second half of last year, with 2,980 deals inked in the first half of 2022, according to KPMG’s latest Pulse of Fintech report. The figures comprised venture capital, private equity, and merger and acquisition (M&A) deals.

The Investor Celebrity Model: Here’s Why Hollywood’s Biggest Names Are Building Ownership In Fintech Businesses Of The Future
Josh Wilson – Forbes
As entertainers grow their following and command higher fees, they start looking for ways to creatively channel their money in a way that affords them more opportunities for maintaining and growing their wealth. In a bid to diversify their income generation, some of Hollywood’s biggest names are venturing into the business world as investors, business owners, or entrepreneurs. They’re not picky about the kinds of businesses they enter into either.


Lombard Odier Adds ESG Screens After ‘Shocking’ Cyber Report; Hundreds of companies screened for software vulnerabilities; Analysis found that about 20% are running outdated software
Lisa Pham – Bloomberg
Lombard Odier Investment Managers said the “shocking” results of an analysis into cybersecurity risks lurking in portfolio companies have led it to apply ESG processes far more broadly to protect its funds from losses. The Swiss asset manager is now on a campaign “to push these companies to get their basic cyber hygiene in order,” said Jeroen van Oerle, portfolio manager of Lombard Odier’s Global FinTech fund. The firm wants to treat “cybersecurity risks the same way as we look at climate-related risks, or water usage risks, or corporate governance risks,” he said.

Calling Women to Join the Cybersecurity Field
Rob Rashotte – CSO Online
As the cybersecurity skills gap persists, it is imperative to create access to training, career pathways, and opportunities in order to encourage more people to pursue careers in cybersecurity. By providing access to and possibilities for cyber jobs for everyone, including women, students, veterans, and others, Fortinet is working to encourage greater representation within cybersecurity. Fortinet offers training, certifications, and career tools in an effort to narrow the cyber skills gap.

After cyberattacks, Finland to award companies cybersecurity grants
Madeline Lauver – Security Magazine
Cybersecurity in Finland has been affected by geopolitical developments connected to Russia and the invasion of Ukraine. With the Scandinavian nation in the process of entering the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), Finland has suffered cyberattacks, including a Denial-of-Service (DoS) attack that targeted the Finnish Parliament on August 9, 2022, temporarily disabling the organization’s website.


Crypto real estate: the property market built on digital assets
Joanna S Kao – Financial Times
Portugal’s first property sale in cryptocurrency might have looked unremarkable, but it didn’t feel that way to those who had been working for nearly a year to make it happen. On May 4, in an office in the northern city of Braga, two men pulled up chairs in front of Apple laptops. João Marques, the seller, passed a crypto wallet address to the buyer, who made a transfer and became the new owner of an apartment in the city worth EUR110,000 — just under three bitcoin at the time. The president of the Portuguese chamber of notaries, Jorge Silva, watched on — as did Carlos Santos, chief technology officer at the Portuguese real estate company Zome, which brokered the sale. The whole process took just a few minutes but it was the culmination of many months of discussions between Portuguese tax, financial and notary authorities to agree on how to allow property transactions to happen entirely in cryptocurrency.

Investor Who Made 1,700% on Mt. Gox Circles Crypto Again; Thomas Braziel’s purchase of Mt. Gox claims is due for payoff; Lack of clarity surrounds repayments in crypto bankruptcies
Justina Lee – Bloomberg
In 2017, Thomas Braziel didn’t have much of an interest in Bitcoin. But as an investor in obscure distressed assets, his sport, as he called it, was bankruptcies — and there was nothing quite as enticing as the collapse of crypto exchange Mt. Gox. “The first instance was: boy, wouldn’t it be cool to buy a Japanese cryptocurrency bankruptcy claim?” said the founder of 507 Capital, a two-man shop named after a section of the U.S. bankruptcy code.

A year on, El Salvador’s bitcoin experiment is stumbling
Nelson Renteria – Reuters
A year after El Salvador adopted bitcoin as legal tender, the area where the world’s first cryptocurrency city was meant to be built – a circular metropolis powered by a volcano – is still dense jungle. President Nayib Bukele had promised that “Bitcoin City” would be a tax haven for crypto investors and miners equipped with an airport, residential and commercial areas, and a central plaza designed to look like a bitcoin symbol from the sky.

Future of NFTs in games involves labour abuse; A consultant at an NFT game company believes that by abusing “cheap labour” from a “developing country”, NFTs can make a comeback in gaming.
Junior Miyai – News.com.au
NFTs in gaming are on the decline, as evidenced by their market crash. Still, early adopters of the controversial technology believe that a path forward exists — at the expense of cheap labour from countries like the Philippines, that is . NFTs, or “non-fungible tokens” are digital receipts that prove ownership of a digital item, and in games they typically refer to a specific costume for a character or weapon. The value of NFTs, and cryptocurrency in general, relies on heavy investing from a wide range of people — but as a currency it is useless. You can swap it for fiat currency, but rarely can you spend it by itself.

Solana NFT Startup Dust Labs Raises $7M as y00ts Tops NFT Charts; The buzzy y00ts NFT launch delivered on the hype with millions in sales, and its creators just raised funding for a Web3 tech startup.
Andrew Hayward – DeCrypt
Solana NFT project y00ts launched Monday night, and has yielded over $6 million worth of secondary sales so far. Dust Labs, the NFT startup tied to y00ts and DeGods, announced on Monday that it has raised $7 million in seed funding. Solana NFT project y00ts is off to a hot start since launching last night, topping secondary markets as the NFTs sell for a significant premium over the mint price. And amid the hype over the rollout, the Web3 tech company tied to the project has raised a seed round from some notable investors.

If NFTs Are Dead, Why Are Bored Apes Still Fetching $100k-Plus?
Kenneth Rapoza – Forbes
Someone please tell the Bored Ape Yacht Club that NFTs are dead, because no one is listening. Most of these top Bored Ape NFTs – digital art that people either use to make art galleries or pin up to their wall in a frame in their NYC penthouse – still go for over $120,000. For some reason, Bored Ape #6588 has a $1 million price tag on it.


Trump’s Lawyers Might Think They Just Won. They Still Botched the Case; Trump’s incompetent attorneys turned an administrative matter into a possible criminal indictment. The appointment of a special master doesn’t change that.
Renato Mariotti – Politico
Donald Trump has a history of using questionable lawyers to his advantage. From the disbarred Roy Cohn to fixer (and felon) Michael Cohen, Trump used lawyers as a tool to expand his empire. As president, he used unethical lawyers like Rudy Giuliani and John Eastman to carry forward schemes to hold onto power. Even when those lawyers got into trouble, Trump has managed to avoid serious consequences.

New Video Shows Election Deniers Accessed Elections Office In Georgia
Marita Vlachou – HuffPost
New footage shows Cathy Latham, a GOP county official who is under investigation for posing as a fake elector for Donald Trump, accompanying two operatives working for a Trump lawyer and entering Coffee County’s elections office on Jan. 7, 2021 — the same day a voting machine was breached there. The existence of the video was reported by CNN and The Washington Post. The video shows the Trump campaign’s efforts to unearth evidence of voter fraud as it sought to overturn the result of the 2020 presidential election. The two operatives seen in the video, Scott Hall and Paul Maggio, have admitted they accessed a voting machine in the county at the request of Sidney Powell, one of Trump’s lawyers, according to CNN.

Anti-ESG Activist Investor Urges Chevron to Increase Oil Production; Vivek Ramaswamy is bringing ESG battle to oil patch by calling on Chevron to slow spending on its energy-transition plan
Amrith Ramkumar – The Wall Street Journal
A conservative activist turned investor who has criticized Wall Street’s efforts to address climate change and other issues is publicly urging Chevron Corp. to pump more fossil fuels over the next decade. Vivek Ramaswamy, who launched an energy-focused exchange-traded fund nearly a month ago, is among the most prominent critics of so-called environmental, social and governance—or ESG—investing. He quickly turned his sights on Chevron, arguing the country’s second-biggest fossil-fuel company should slow spending on its energy-transition plan, which he said was partially motivated by pressure from top shareholders such as BlackRock Inc.

U.S. eyes annual shots as updated COVID vaccines roll out
Ahmed Aboulenein and Susan Heavey – Reuters
The United States is likely to start recommending COVID-19 vaccines annually, health officials said on Tuesday, as new boosters designed to fight currently circulating variants of the coronavirus roll out. By the end of this week, 90% of Americans will live within five miles (8 km) of sites carrying updated vaccines, U.S. health secretary Xavier Becerra said at a White House briefing. Officials said people could get the new boosters this fall or winter alongside their regular annual flu shots. President Joe Biden said separately in a statement that for most Americans, “that means one COVID-19 shot, once a year, each fall.”

U.S. plans to shift to annual coronavirus shots, similar to flu vaccine; White House says omicron-targeting boosters mark turning point in pandemic
Lena H. Sun – The Washington Post
White House coronavirus coordinator Ashish Jha said Tuesday the newly reformulated omicron-targeting boosters mark an “important milestone” in the U.S. pandemic response, moving the country to a point where a single annual coronavirus shot should provide a “high degree of protection against serious illness all year.” The cadence would be similar to that of the annual flu shot, which could be administered at the same time. “I really believe this is why God gave us two arms — one for the flu shot and the other one for the covid shot,” Jha said.

Executive Order on Ensuring Responsible Development of Digital Assets
The White House

UK weighs huge support package as Europe battles energy crisis
Essi Lehto and Michael Shields – Reuters
Britain’s new prime minister was working on what looks set to be Europe’s biggest energy crisis support package so far as countries scramble to protect households and businesses from soaring bills and shore up struggling suppliers. Liz Truss, who took over from Boris Johnson on Tuesday, is planning to freeze household energy bills at the current level for this winter and next, paid for by government-backed loans to suppliers, the BBC reported, adding the scheme could cost 100-130 billion pounds ($116-151 billion). The government is also working on help for businesses, but this is likely to be more complex and would be reviewed more frequently, the BBC said. European governments are pushing through multibillion-euro packages to prevent utilities from collapsing and protect households amid soaring energy costs triggered mainly by the fallout from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Putin Aims to Triumph in Battle for ‘Cultural Supremacy’; New soft-power policy casts Russia as defender of tradition; Russia banned same-sex marriage, attacks LGBTQ ‘propaganda’
President Vladimir Putin sought to position Russia as leading the defense of “traditional” cultural values against the liberal West in a new Kremlin decree. “The battle for cultural supremacy is growing on the world stage,” according to the statement Putin signed Monday on Russia’s “humanitarian policy” abroad. “Centuries of history have given Russia a rich cultural heritage and spiritual potential that has put it in a unique position to successfully spread traditional Russian moral and religious values.”


Unsealed FBI docs reveal a flurry of calls amid Burr’s stock trades
Christina Wilkie – CNBC
Newly unsealed FBI documents paint a vivid picture of the government’s evidence in a 2020 insider trading investigation of North Carolina’s senior senator, Republican Richard Burr.
Burr was ultimately not charged with breaking any laws. But the newly released sworn affidavit of an FBI special agent shows that the Justice Department had probable cause to believe that Burr had committed insider trading and securities fraud.

CFTC Charges Former Trader for Engaging in a Fraudulent Scheme to Mismark U.S. Dollar Interest Rate Derivatives
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission today issued an order filing and settling charges against Blaise Brochard of New York, New York, a former trader at a global bank, for engaging in a scheme to mismark positions on the bank’s U.S. dollar interest rate derivatives desk (IRD Desk). The order requires Brochard to pay a $250,000 penalty, cease and desist from violating applicable provisions of the Commodity Exchange Act (CEA) and CFTC regulations, and comply with certain conditions and undertakings, including a three-year ban on trading commodity interests for or on behalf of other persons or entities. “Mismarking schemes undermine the fairness and integrity of the markets, and we will vigorously pursue such misconduct and hold individuals accountable, where appropriate,” said CFTC Acting Director of Enforcement Gretchen Lowe.

Esma to meet with clearing industry over EU energy crisis; Widening eligible collateral on table; ECB intervention would need government indemnities
Costas Mourselas, Samuel Wilkes – Risk.net
The European Securities and Markets Authority (Esma) is due to meet with clearing house representatives this week to discuss potential ways to ease the pressure of sky-high collateral requirements on energy market participants. Russian state-owned energy firm Gazprom has indefinitely halted all natural gas supplies through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline to Germany, prompting fears of a full-blown European energy crisis.

CFTC’s Energy and Environmental Markets Advisory Committee to Meet September 20 in Oklahoma
First EEMAC Meeting to be Held Outside Washington
CFTC Commissioner Summer K. Mersinger, sponsor of the Energy and Environmental Markets Advisory Committee (EEMAC), today announced the EEMAC will hold a public meeting on Tuesday, September 20 from 9:00 a.m. to 1 p.m. (CDT) in Stillwater, Oklahoma on the campus of Oklahoma State University. This is the first EEMAC meeting to be held outside of Washington, D.C. Members of the public may also attend the meeting virtually.

NFA orders Denmark firm Direct Hedge Danmark Fondsmaeglerselskab AS to pay a $70,000 fine
NFA has ordered Direct Hedge Danmark Fondsmaeglerselskab AS (Direct Hedge) to pay a $70,000 fine. Direct Hedge is a registered introducing broker and approved swap firm Member of NFA located in Hellerup, Denmark. The Decision, issued by an NFA Hearing Panel, is based on a Complaint issued by NFA’s Business Conduct Committee and a settlement offer submitted by Direct Hedge, in which the firm neither admitted nor denied the allegations in the Complaint. The Complaint alleged that Direct Hedge failed to keep required communications records, in violation of NFA Compliance Rule 2-10(a) and failed to register an individual as an AP and NFA Associate, in violation of NFA Bylaw 301(b). The Complaint further alleged that Direct Hedge failed to diligently supervise the firm and its employees, in violation of NFA Compliance Rule 2-9(a).

Regulatory Operations: Stronger Regulation Through Integrated Oversight
Member Supervision, Market Regulation and Transparency Services and Enforcement. These three teams together make up Regulatory Operations or Reg Ops, which is at the very core of FINRA’s efforts to protect investors and ensure fair and efficient markets for all.

SEC Charges Perceptive Advisors for Failing to Disclose SPAC-Related Conflicts of Interest
The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged New York-based investment adviser Perceptive Advisors LLC with failing to disclose conflicts of interest regarding its personnel’s ownership of sponsors of special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs) into which Perceptive advised its clients to invest.

U.S. SEC warns against switching auditors to avoid Chinese company trading bans
Michelle Price – Reuters
U.S. accounting firms that agree to lead audits of New York-listed Chinese and Hong Kong companies looking to avoid potential trading bans risk breaching U.S. rules, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) warned on Tuesday. Worried they may be kicked off U.S. exchanges if China does not allow the SEC’s accounting watchdog to vet Chinese company audits, some U.S.-listed Chinese and Hong Kong companies have recently switched their lead auditor from a local to a U.S. or other foreign firm, the SEC said.

A Florida woman touted as a ‘Mother Teresa’ ran a $196 million Ponzi scheme, feds say
Bill Chappell – NPR
MJ Capital Funding’s website said that its founder, Johanna Garcia, was “often referred to as ‘Mother Teresa’ in her community.” But federal authorities say Garcia was actually running a Ponzi scheme. The site was shut down by court order. She said she worked miracles — not for charity, but for profit: Johanna M. Garcia connected investors with companies that needed short-term financing, promising robust returns on their money. But federal prosecutors say it wasn’t a miracle; it was a lucrative Ponzi scheme.

Former Victorian director sentenced after making false statement to ASIC
Van Nguyen, of North Melbourne, Victoria, has been sentenced after pleading guilty to making a false or misleading statement in a form to ASIC. Mr Nguyen lodged a form with ASIC to voluntarily deregister Melcorp Fabrics Pty Ltd (21-338MR) when he was aware that Melcorp Fabrics had outstanding liabilities.

ASIC disqualifies NSW director for five years
ASIC has disqualified Saleh Zreika, also known as Salem Zreika, of Villawood, NSW, from managing corporations for the maximum period of five years over his involvement in the failure of twelve companies. ASIC found that Mr Zreika does not possess the skills to manage a company and should not manage corporations given that he: managed twelve corporations in such a way that each failed owing significant amounts, with no ability to pay creditors; disregarded statutory lodgement duties by failing to lodge many documents with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) in the period 2017 to 2020; avoided paying statutory debts accrued by TS Resources Pty Ltd, Home Retail Solutions Pty Ltd and Trinity Corporate Services Pty Ltd; allowed TS Resources to lend $627,030 to related parties for no commercial reason and in an uncommercial manner, with $266,560 of the money loaned yet to be repaid; managed TS Resources and Home Retail such that they did not keep proper books; and failed to provide adequate responses when liquidators requested information.
At the time of ASIC’s decision, the twelve companies owed a combined total of $8,281,826 to unsecured creditors, including $1,995,858 owing to the ATO and $3,425,847 owing to Revenue NSW.

ABN AMRO Clearing Sydney Pty Ltd pays $222,000 infringement notice
ABN AMRO Clearing Sydney Pty Ltd (ABN AMRO) has paid a penalty of $222,000 to comply with an infringement notice given by the Markets Disciplinary Panel (MDP). The MDP found that, on three occasions on 7 January 2021, 14 April 2021 and 15 April 2021, ABN AMRO registered block trades on the ASX 24 Market in the SPI 200 Futures contract, each of which included split allocations below the Minimum Value Threshold of 200 lots.

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), the EU’s securities markets regulator, has today published its latest edition of its Spotlight on Markets Newsletter.
Your one-stop-shop in the world of EU financial markets features in the August issue the second Trends, Risks and Vulnerabilities (TRV) Report of 2022. The Russian war on Ukraine against a backdrop of already-increasing inflation has profoundly impacted the risk environment of EU financial markets, with overall risks to ESMA’s remit remaining at its highest level.

Speech by Sarah Pritchard, Executive Director, Markets, at the Financial Crime Summit
Sarah Pritchard, Executive Director, Markets, speeaking at The Financial Crime Summit – 1LOD, County Hall, London Date: 7 September 2022 Note: This is a drafted speech and may differ from the delivered version Key points: Working together with firms and agencies to share intelligence and quickly respond to evolving threats makes us better at spotting and stopping financial crime. Cost of living crisis will lead to criminals trying to exploit people even more through scams such as loan fee fraud and APP facilitated scams. Fighting financial crime underpins the FCA’s priorities and we are taking action at pace on areas from spotting sanctions-busting to driving improvements on money laundering controls and raising consumer awareness through Scamsmart campaigns.

The 3rd Japan-China Capital Markets Forum
The 3rd Japan-China Capital Markets Forum was held online on Wednesday, September 7, 2022 by the Japanese Financial Services Agency (FSA), Japan Exchange Group, Inc. (JPX), the Japan Securities Dealers Association (JSDA), the Investment Trusts Association, Japan (JITA) and Chinese securities regulators and related industry organizations, based on the agreement reached at the Japan-China Summit Meeting in October 2018.

Takeovers Panel rules on the price for the mandatory general offer for Suncity Group Holdings Limited
The Takeovers and Mergers Panel has ruled that the appropriate price for the general offer for Suncity Group Holdings Limited (Note 1) by Major Success Group Limited should be HK$0.0690 per Suncity share. This figure represents the total consideration paid by Major Success to Champion Trade Group Limited for the acquisition of Suncity’s controlling stake and other security assets, divided by the total number of Suncity shares acquired by Major Success.

Investing and Trading

Richard Burr avoided loss, made money on ‘well-timed’ stock deal, court records show
Danielle Battaglia – The News & Observer
Court records released Tuesday reveal that Sen. Richard Burr avoided an estimated $87,000 in losses and gained more than $164,000 due to his “well-timed” stock sales at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. New information about a now-closed insider trading investigation into Burr and his family came to light Tuesday with the release of documents related to a search warrant that allowed investigators to seize and search Burr’s cell phone. The Los Angeles Times first reported the Department of Justice investigated why Burr sold more than $1.6 million in stocks at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. The court documents reveal that investigators believed Burr, his brother-in-law and sister-in-law may have sold off stocks based on confidential information Burr received in February 2020 as the pandemic was rising in the United States.

Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance

Missing The Mark; 2022 analysis of global CDP temperature ratings
James Davis and Robert Bailey — OliverWyman
This report is co-authored with CDP.
As we approach COP27, this report uses CDP’s latest temperature ratings to assess whether current corporate emissions reduction targets are ambitious enough to meet the Paris Agreement’s 1.5°Celsius goal. CDP temperature ratings compare our comprehensive dataset of publicly disclosed corporate emissions target disclosures, covering more than 4,000 companies globally, with science-based global warming trajectories. G7 companies are on a path to a 2.7°C temperature increase.

More energy on less land: the drive to shrink solar’s footprint; Building highly efficient utility-scale solar farms on ever-smaller tracts of land is a top priority amid land-use conflicts over renewables.
Cheryl Katz – Greenbiz.com
From the ground, the new solar farm shimmers like a mirage oasis on a hot summer day. Instead of row after slanting row of shiny panels stretching taller than corn, this array, mounted directly on the earth, lies flat as water. From the air, it looks like an acre-sized swimming pool. Yet despite its modest stature, this new type of photovoltaic plant — one of five producing a combined 2.5 megawatts of energy in California’s Central Valley — can match the output of conventional solar farms nearly three times its size.In a meadow in southwestern Germany, solar panels stand upright in long, thin lines, like a series of fences. While farmers raise hay in the wide spaces between rows, the vertical power plant generates carbon-free electricity for the nearby town. Across the border in France, both wine and watts flow from panel-topped vineyards. Tea grows under solar panels in Japan, while pollinators are nurtured in the United States. And from Canada to Australia, utility-scale solar farms producing power for thousands of homes share their space with sheep. These diverse approaches have the same goal — to help meet the burgeoning global demand for green energy by lightening the footprint of solar farms. https://jlne.ws/3qeKP8O

ESG must be split in two; If we do not disentangle the industry’s dual meanings, it will not progress
Stuart Kirk – Financial Times
Many are surprised by the recent ESG backlash. Not me. Popular money-spinners draw enemies and worthiness is rarely a shield. Even Mother Teresa copped it now and then. The timing is right too. War, inflation and wobbly markets have pushed ESG down the agenda. Booming energy and sagging tech shares have left it vulnerable. Where were the dissenters before, you might ask? Still, it is welcome that questioning ESG is now tolerated. Too late for some. I’ve received hundreds of messages since my infamous Moral Money speech from others thrown under an electric bus for putting their hands up. I’m pro-ESG, as it happens. But I have long argued it has an existential defect. Fix this and ESG can thrive.

Forthcoming webinar on the Staff Request for Feedback on the IFRS Sustainability Disclosure Taxonomy
The IFRS Foundation is holding two live webinars on Monday 12 September on the Staff Request for Feedback on the IFRS Sustainability Disclosure Taxonomy to inform the development of an IFRS Sustainability Disclosure Taxonomy for digital reporting. Join the webinar to hear more about the staff request for feedback, which is out for comment until 30 September 2022. The staff recommendations, detailed in the staff request for feedback, focus on fundamental matters that need to be considered early to enable the ISSB to publish an IFRS Sustainability Disclosure Taxonomy on a timely basis.


Goldman Sachs promotes Jacqueline Arthur to lead human resources
Lananh Nguyen – Reuters
Goldman Sachs Group Inc on Tuesday appointed Jacqueline Arthur, a 15-year veteran of the bank, to run human resources starting Jan. 1, the company told Reuters exclusively. Arthur, 45, will take over from Bentley de Beyer, who has been the bank’s global head of human capital management since early 2020. Arthur currently serves as chief operating and strategy officer of the human resources division. She was previously deputy chief of staff and secretary to Goldman’s management committee and was formerly COO for its asset-management and consumer and wealth-management units. Arthur will report to John Waldron, Goldman’s president and chief operating officer, and join the bank’s management committee. De Beyer will retire and become an advisory director at the start of next year.

Centrica seeks billions in additional financing as collateral demands soar; Move by UK’s largest power supplier to households is latest sign of strains spreading across sector
Stephen Morris, Nathalie Thomas and David Sheppard – Financial Times
British Gas owner Centrica is in talks with banks to secure billions of pounds in extra credit to meet ballooning collateral demands as a result of extreme volatility in energy markets. People familiar with the talks described the FTSE 100 company’s request for additional short-term financing as “pre-emptive” in case the situation deteriorates. The move by the UK’s largest supplier of gas and electricity to households is the latest sign of the strains spreading across the energy sector as Russia’s cuts in gas supply to Europe send wholesale prices soaring.

Wellness Exchange

‘One of the biggest problems confronting medicine today’: University of Chicago offers class on misinformation
Lisa Schencker – Chicago Tribune
Patients have long been told to turn to their doctors for accurate, trusted health information. But in recent years, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, doctors’ voices have sometimes been drowned out by social media users who blast misinformation across the globe, leading patients to make questionable, and sometimes dangerous, choices about their health. Now, a Chicago medical school is offering a new class aimed at better equipping doctors and other medical professionals to be heard: a course on how to battle medical misinformation. The University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine began offering the class to medical students last year and recently developed a condensed version for nurses studying for their doctorates, pharmacy residents and senior medical students.


Tractors to the rescue as floods submerge India’s tech hub
Nivedita Bhattacharjee and Nandan Mandayam – Reuters
Authorities in the Indian city of Bengaluru used tractors on Tuesday to rescue residents of posh housing estates marooned by floods as army teams were sent in after two days of torrential rain in the technology hub. The state government of Karnataka, of which Bengaluru is the capital, announced about 3 billion rupees ($38 million) in relief support to manage the damage from flooding as many parts of the city where several global companies and domestic startups are based were under water. More rain fell in the city, also called the “Silicon Valley” of India, in an unusually wet monsoon season, which has brought 162% more rainfall than average since June 1.

Hong Kong discovers first case of monkeypox
Hong Kong has reported its first case of monkeypox, health authorities said on Tuesday, after symptoms were discovered in a 30-year old man who arrived from the Phillippines after travelling in the United States and Canada. It marks the first imported case in Hong Kong of monkeypox, a viral disease which the World Health Organisation has declared a global health emergency. The Chinese special administrative region, like the mainland, has not had any local local monkeypox cases.

The summer drought’s hefty toll on American crops
Laura Reiley – The Washington Post
It was a bad year for corn. And for tomatoes. And for many other American crops. Farmers, agricultural economists and others taking stock of this summer’s growing season say drought conditions and extreme weather have wreaked havoc on many row crops, fruits and vegetables, with the American Farm Bureau Federation suggesting yields could be down by as much as a third compared with last year. American corn is on track to produce its lowest yield since the drought of 2012, according to analysts at Rabobank, which collects data about commodity markets. This year’s hard red winter wheat crop was the smallest since 1963, the bank’s analysts said.

California Declares Grid Emergency As Power Use Nears 5-Year High; Officials fear blackouts in nation’s largest state as a blistering heat wave rockets temperatures into the triple digits.
Mary Papenfuss – HuffPost
California officials again declared a power grid emergency Monday afternoon as energy use neared a five-year high amid a blistering heat wave. Temperatures soared above 110 degrees in several areas. Millions of residents and businesses cranked up their air conditioning as America’s largest state was forecast to bust an energy consumption record set in 2017. The high risk of blackouts triggered the Stage 1 emergency declaration. The only way blackouts can now be avoided is if consumers double or even triple their efforts to conserve electricity, officials said. “The potential for rotating outages has increased significantly,” said Elliot Mainzer, chief executive officer of the California Independent System Operator (Caiso), which runs the state’s grid.

White House signals most people will only need annual Covid booster
Andrew Joseph – STAT News
As part of its push to encourage vaccine-weary Americans to get the updated Covid shot, the White House put forth a new selling point Tuesday: to view it as a first annual shot, akin to the annual flu shot. “If you are vaccinated and 12 and older, get the new COVID-19 shot this fall,” President Biden said in a statement Tuesday evening. “This once-a-year shot can reduce your risk of getting COVID-19, reduce your chance of spreading it to others, and dramatically reduce your risk of severe COVID-19.” The messaging from the White House — including a briefing earlier Tuesday where health officials outlined the rollout of the new bivalent booster shots authorized last week — reflects another transition point in the country’s fight against the coronavirus. Federal health officials last month, for example, tossed out quarantine and certain testing guidelines.

Deal partner for Trump’s Truth Social fails to get backing for SPAC extension -sources
Svea Herbst-Bayliss – Reuters
The blank-check acquisition firm that agreed to merge with Donald Trump’s social media company failed to secure enough shareholder support for a one-year extension to complete the deal, people familiar with the matter said on Monday. At stake is a $1.3 billion cash infusion that Trump Media & Technology Group (TMTG), which operates the former U.S. president’s Truth Social app, stands to receive from Digital World Acquisition Corp, the special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) that inked a deal last October to take TMTG public.

California Endures Worst Days Of Severe, Relentless Heat Wave; Temperatures have reached 117 degrees Fahrenheit in parts of the state, which is suffering through a deep drought.
Lydia O’Connor – HuffPost
One of the longest, hottest heat waves in California history continues to beleaguer the state – shattering temperature records and straining an already overtaxed power grid. Meteorologists are warning that Tuesday, the sixth consecutive day of dangerously high temperatures, may bring the worst of a hot spell that’s already broken some daily, monthly and all-time heat records by large margins. While Southern California is now experiencing a slight drop in temperatures, Northern California’s heat wave is peaking, and many communities there could “potentially see their hottest day in recorded history this afternoon,” Daniel Swain, a climate scientist at the University of California, Los Angeles, said in a Twitter Spaces discussion Tuesday.


Wall Street Banks Lead Return-to-Office With Labor Day Push; As summer ends, New York-based companies are renewing efforts to bring employees back — this time for real.
Claire Ballentine and Natalie Wong – Bloomberg
It was standing room only for commuters on the New York-bound train leaving Summit, New Jersey, at 5:38 a.m. Tuesday. Traffic on the Long Island Expressway was at a crawl as rain poured down, while Sweetgreen locations in Manhattan were packed by lunchtime. Labor Day has long marked a turning point in New York: Finance moguls return from the Hamptons, kids go back to school, and business picks up as the calendar turns to September. But that’s not been the case since 2019 with return-to-office plans scuttled by the pandemic, including the delta variant last year. Now, bosses are expecting workers to finally start showing up more regularly at Manhattan offices that have been sparsely populated for more than two years. And they’re counting on the turbulent economy to provide an extra nudge.

Domestic Worker Pay Is Rising, But Not Enough to Keep Up With Cost of Rent, Food; More report making at least $15-an-hour, a survey released Tuesday finds.
Ella Ceron – Bloomberg
More domestic workers in the US are making at least $15 an hour, but the share who say they can’t make housing payments or afford food has held steady, a survey released Tuesday finds. A new report from NDWA Labs, the research wing of the National Domestic Workers Alliance, found that on average, 38% of nannies, home-care workers, and housecleaners are bringing in at least $15 an hour for their work, up from 30% earlier in the year.

California Power Cuts: Text Alert May Have Prevented Blackouts
Dan Murtaugh and Brian Eckhouse – Bloomberg
A timely mobile alert may have prevented hundreds of thousands of Californians from being plunged into darkness in the middle of a heat wave Tuesday night.

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China commodity trader woe a setback for Glencore

China commodity trader woe a setback for Glencore

First Read Hits & Takes John Lothian & JLN Staff Congratulations to Larry Tabb. STA announced Larry as the 2022 Dictum Meum Pactum (DMP) Award recipient. Here is a success story for you. The Greenwood Project placed four interns at Goldman Sachs this summer...

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