Explosion in Retail Options Trade Not a Short-Term Blip, Cboe’s Schwartz Says
Suzanne Cosgrove – John Lothian News
In the current options market environment of rapid retail trading growth, data on who is trading what — customer buyers versus firm buyers, that is — is a hot topic right now. In fact, Henry Schwartz, senior director and head of product intelligence at Cboe Global Markets, formerly president of Trade Alert LLC until it was acquired by Cboe in 2020, contends that information about customer flows has become more important than ever to market makers.
Quantitative analysis and how to properly value stocks and options remains critically important, he said, but customer activity and flows have taken over in some sectors, at least for the time being. A traditional valuation of GameStop, for example, would not have explained why its shares rallied in the last two weeks or how implied volatility exploded. “It’s not normal options flow,” Schwartz said in an interview with JLN on Monday, “it tends to focus on hot names.”
To read the rest of this article, go here.
Hits & Takes
CryptoMarketsWiki.com is back up. Thank you to Jeff Bergstrom, JLN’s CIO, for making that happen. In the next day or so, MarketsWiki.com will go over the 200 million page view mark.
Nasdaq is celebrating 50 Years of innovation with a digital exhibit with the Museum of American Finance and Heritage Werks.
DASH Financial Technologies finally announced their agreement to be acquired by ION Investment Group after it was previously reported by Waters Technology.
Mike O’Connor gave to the JLN MarkesWiki Education GoFundMe Campaign. I am trying to figure out which Mike O’Connor this is, but thank you to Mike and all who have given and all who have yet to give. Support our efforts to preserve industry history by giving to our GoFundMe campaign.
Have a great day and stay safe and treat people the same way you want to be treated: with respect, equality and justice.~JJL
Derivatives Forum Frankfurt 2021. Registration is open!Eurex invites you to join the virtual edition of the Derivatives Forum Frankfurt 2021! It will take place on 23-24 March 2021 covering European and the US time zones.The Derivatives Forum Frankfurt 2021 will be held as virtual edition with thought leadership insights, industry debates, keynote speeches and virtual networking opportunities. The Derivatives Forum is the leading European event focused on trading and clearing for derivatives and securities financing across asset classes.
We look forward to welcoming you on March 23.
Nasdaq at 50: The company behind the tech-stock index reinvents itself as a financial-tech heavyweight
Shawn Tully – Fortune
When most people hear the name “Nasdaq,” they think of the world’s premier venue for buying and selling tech stocks. The Nasdaq exchange is where the cool kids of Silicon Valley and other points West – – from Jeff Bezos to Steve Jobs to Mark Zuckerberg to Elon Musk – – first offered their shares to all and sundry, and its fame grew as their fledgling companies mushroomed into the world’s most valuable enterprises.
*****I hate to tell Nasdaq what happens at 50, but let’s just say it involves a scope.~JJL
Alex Kearns died thinking he owed hundreds of thousands for stock market losses on Robinhood. His parents are set to sue over his suicide.
Tony Dokoupil, Michael Kaplan, Martin Finn and Cassidy McDonald – CBS News
20-year-old Alex Kearns took his own life last June mistakenly believing he’d lost nearly $750,000 in a risky bet on Robinhood, the stock-trading app where he started trading as a teenager.His parents plan to file a lawsuit, first obtained by CBS News, on Monday accusing Robinhood of wrongful death, negligent infliction of emotional distress and unfair business practices.
*****A sad story that did not have to be.~JJL
South Korean boy investor with 43% gains is new retail trading icon
Cynthia Kim – Reuters
Watching the business news first thing is a new routine for 12-year-old South Korean Kwon Joon, as he dreams of becoming the next Warren Buffett after earning stellar returns of 43% from a hobby picked up just last year: buying stocks.
******In the old days this would be a top. Thank goodness he did not get his trade suggestions from a cab driver.~JJL
Wes Moore to Step Down as CEO of Robin Hood Foundation
Robin Hood Foundation
Combat veteran, bestselling author, and social entrepreneur will depart in May 2021; Moore led the Robin Hood foundation to one of its strongest years in the anti-poverty group’s 33-year history in 2020 – raising over $230 million as the organization filled a critical role in response to the pandemic; Robin Hood is a 501(c)3 organization and not affiliated with any for-profit businesses that use a similar name
Today, Wes Moore announced he will step down as CEO of the Robin Hood foundation in May of this year after a four-year tenure where under Moore’s leadership, the organization raised over $650 million, restructured and refocused the grantmaking portfolio, executed critical relief efforts in response to COVID-19, expanded the role of the organization through policymaking, and launched several initiatives — including a national partnership and the Power Fund to increase supports for nonprofits led by people of color.
******Not that Robinhood. The charitable foundation.~JJL
Monday’s Top Three
Our top story Monday by a wide margin was Bloomberg’s Trading Titan Don Wilson Has Advice for Yellen on Market Fixes. Second was, once again in the top three, CME Group’s CME Group Inc. Names Slate of Director Nominees. Third was Points and Figures’ I Thought I Was Going To Die, about Jeffrey Carter’s struggle with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis.
199,879,706 pages viewed; 25,336 pages; 230,064 edits
|CryptoMarketsWiki, our archive of the cryptocurrency and blockchain world, is going strong and keeping pace as this area of finance grows and evolves.Recently Updated Pages
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Hong Kong Exchanges Names JPMorgan’s Nicolas Aguzin as New CEO; JPMorgan veteran appointed for three-year term at the helm of what is now the world’s most valuable exchange group
Joanne Chiu – WSJ
The operator of Hong Kong’s stock exchange named JPMorgan Chase & Co. veteran Nicolas Aguzin as its next chief executive, appointing an international banker to the top job as the city’s status as a global finance hub is at a crossroads. The hire comes as Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd. 388 -0.77% enjoys a China-fueled boom in trading and new listings. Mr. Aguzin, 52 years old, will take the helm of what is now the world’s most valuable exchange group, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence data, with a rally in its own shares lifting its market capitalization to around $85 billion.
Nasdaq Celebrates 50 Years of Innovation; Digital exhibit with the Museum of American Finance and Heritage Werks
In celebration of its 50th anniversary, Nasdaq (Nasdaq: NDAQ) today launched a digital exhibit, in partnership with the Museum of American Finance (MoAF) showcasing artifacts and stories representing the history of the company, the evolution of financial technology, data and trading systems, and landmark events that highlight Nasdaq’s impact on the global capital markets ecosystem.
Nikkei Group names Okada as chair; Tsuneo Kita to step down after leading global growth while Tsuyoshi Hasebe becomes media company’s president
Alex Barker and Robin Harding – FT
Naotoshi Okada will become the new chair and chief executive of the Nikkei Group as the 144-year-old Japanese media company, owner of the Financial Times, wrestles with the downturn brought by Covid-19.
Hong Kong Exchange Names JPMorgan’s Aguzin New CEO
Cathy Chan, Alfred Liu, and Kiuyan Wong – Bloomberg
Veteran JPMorgan banker picked to succeed Charles Li; Aguzin will need to build on bourse’s push into mainland China
Hong Kong’s stock exchange named Nicolas Aguzin, who heads JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s international private bank, as its new chief executive officer. After a protracted search, the 52-year-old banker was appointed to a three-year term as the top boss at Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing Ltd., according to a statement that confirmed an earlier Bloomberg News report. He will replace Charles Li, also a former JPMorgan banker, who announced his resignation in May and left at the end of last year after a decade at the helm.
Reddit’s Valuation Doubles to $6 Billion After Funding Round; Its WallStreetBets community played a prominent role in recent stock-trading frenzy
Sarah E. Needleman – WSJ
Reddit Inc. doubled its valuation to $6 billion in a new round of funding that comes as the social-media company has added users through the Covid-19 pandemic and more recently has gained attention for its role in the recent Wall Street trading frenzy. Reddit on Monday said it raised $250 million in a late-stage funding round led by venture-capital firm Vy Capital. Previously it was valued at $3 billion after its last funding round in February 2019, according to PitchBook, a provider of private-market data. Current investors in Reddit also include venture-capital firm Andreessen Horowitz and internet conglomerate Tencent Holdings Ltd.
Angry Robinhood Traders Take Aim at the Wrong Robin Hood; After the brokerage restricted trading in GameStop, outraged tweets struck a Robin Hood historical group that found a new audience for the legendary outlaw
James Hookway – WSJ
The day Robinhood Markets Inc. brokerage restricted trading in GameStop Corp. , a howl rose among the small-time traders looking to take a swing at Wall Street big shots during the market’s end-of-January frenzy. The trading folderol caught the attention of Robin Hood enthusiasts in Nottingham, England, where legends swirl of past campaigns to squeeze the rich.
DASH Financial Technologies Announces Agreement to be Acquired by ION Investment Group
DASH Financial Technologies
DASH Financial Technologies (“DASH”), the leading options technology and execution provider in the U.S., today announced that ION Investment Group (“ION”) has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the company from Flexpoint Ford, LLC (“Flexpoint Ford”).
GameStop-fueled lawsuits could force Citadel to pry open its black box; Citadel chieftain Ken Griffin may have to decide whether to settle to avoid exposing closely held secrets of his investing empire or how large of a check he’d be willing to write to make the problem go away.
Steve Daniels – Crain’s Chicago Business
All it takes is one judge. Citadel remains caught in the swirl of anger and confusion over the would-be Reddit revolution in stock investing. As both a participant in the short selling that newly minted day traders attempted to combat and profit from as well as the leading market maker for the trading app many of them used, Ken Griffin’s investment empire is a starring player in the drama, the ending of which defies easy prediction.
Capitalism Is Struggling With the Language of Climate Change; The technical terminology of science can sometimes be muddled in powerful climate messages from finance and political leaders.
Akshat Rathi – Bloomberg
There’s now an overwhelming consensus behind zeroing-out emissions to slow down global warming. Nine of the 10 largest economies will soon align behind this goal, once President Joe Biden resets U.S. climate policy. The single-largest shareholder on the planet, BlackRock Inc., has likewise put its $8.7 trillion heft behind a powerful message to chief executives everywhere: The decades ahead will be defined by minimizing emissions, requiring an overhaul to everyone’s business models.
Bitcoin Tops $48,000 on Bets That Tesla Is Just the Beginning
Joanna Ossinger and Eric Lam – Bloomberg
Analysts say wider corporate adoption of Bitcoin is imminent; There’s little evidence of crypto being used for payments
Tesla Inc. has unleashed a new buying frenzy for Bitcoin on bets that more companies will be soon following the path set by billionaire Elon Musk. Bitcoin soared as much as 7.9% and climbed above $48,000 for the first time on Tuesday. The moves extend a sharp rally in the cryptocurrency, which is up almost 40% since the beginning of February. The wider Bloomberg Galaxy Crypto Index jumped to a record and Bitcoin-related stocks rallied.
The Elon Musk Cargo Cult Keeps Growing; This probably won’t end in disaster, right?
Justin Fox – Bloomberg
Elon Musk. Gamestop. Dogecoin. Bitcoin. Tesla. Seriously, why do we even need verbs anymore? Tesla Inc.’s disclosure in its annual report that it had bought $1.5 billion of the Bitcoin cryptocurrency “to further diversify and maximize returns on our cash” was just the latest in a series of charming Musk-related market happenings over the past few weeks, plus Bitcoin has been earning higher returns than cash lately. “Crossing the memes” in this way felt portentous to Liam Denning, though: “It’s as if the earth has shifted a billionth of a degree on its axis or we are approaching some singularity in the capital markets with Lovecraftian overtones.”
Tesla Boots the Bitcoin Bandwagon Closer to Corporate America
Joanna Ossinger – Bloomberg
Other corporate treasurers will invest in Bitcoin: Fundstrat; Bitcoin surged to a record Tuesday after Tesla investment
Tesla Inc.’s purchase of $1.5 billion in Bitcoin may have forced cryptocurrencies onto the agenda of corporate treasurers worldwide. While crypto acolytes have been saying for some time that corporate adoption is imminent, in reality it had been limited to firms such as MicroStrategy Inc. and Square Inc. Tesla getting involved — the fourth biggest company in the S&P 500 and helmed by the world’s richest man — brings the discussion to the big leagues.
Dogecoin, the Cryptocurrency That Started as a Joke, Is Spiking
Ephrat Livni – NY Times
Amid the so-called meme stock frenzy, it is perhaps fitting that a cryptocurrency based on a meme has been swept up in the mania. Dogecoin, a digital currency created as a joke, is now the world’s 10th largest cryptocurrency, according to CoinMarketCap. Its price is up by more than 1,600 percent so far this year, pushed in recent days by celebrity cheerleading from the likes of Tesla’s Elon Musk, the rapper Snoop Dogg and the rocker Gene Simmons of Kiss, who all promoted Dogecoin on social media.
History Tells Us to Worry About Inflation; Macroeconomics always has its fads: The latest is embracing public debt and not worrying about inflation. But fashions change very quickly.
Ferdinando Giugliano – Bloomberg
Just like clothes and food, macroeconomics has its fashions. The latest is for public debt. From the OECD to the International Monetary Fund, global organizations that traditionally supported fiscal restraint have become much more relaxed about sovereign borrowing.
Markets Bet the Fed Really Does Like It Hot; Real yields have stayed anchored despite a surge in inflation expectations. Are investors right?
John Authers – Bloomberg
Expectations for inflation are breaking upward, as are stock markets. In the U.S., 10-year inflation expectations are their highest since 2014, at just above 2.2%. German inflation expectations are also rising sharply, but the gap between the two is now the widest it has been since the global financial crisis in 2008:
Apple, Facebook, Twitter, and Robinhood Have Something in Common; The companies are exerting more influence over what takes place on their platforms.
Alex Webb – Bloomberg
There’s a curious thread connecting Robinhood, Facebook, Twitter, and Apple this year: The technology companies are starting to take active responsibility for what happens on their platforms. From Robinhood Markets Inc. deciding to limit trading of meme stocks, to Facebook Inc. and Twitter Inc. banning then-President Trump’s accounts, to Apple Inc. rolling out tools that make it harder for app makers to hoover up user data from iPhones, the platform operators have taken steps that extend beyond their legal obligations. It’s an effort at accountability they have generally avoided.
Icy, Remote Alaska Has an Edge in Covid Vaccination; The largest, least-populated U.S. state might lack transportation infrastructure, but so far, Alaska has managed to mount the nation’s most effective inoculation campaign.
Bailey Berg – Bloomberg
In much of the U.S., healthcare workers are involved in a delicate dance: making sure they defrost coronavirus vaccines at just the right time so the serum doesn’t get too warm, rendering it useless before it can be used. Alaska health official Dr. Ellen Hodges has the opposite problem.
WHO Rules Out Lab Theory on Virus, Saying Animals Likely Source
Animal host, frozen wildlife products are possible routes; Expert group probing virus origins concludes mission in Wuhan
A World Health Organization investigation in China found that the coronavirus most likely jumped to humans through an animal host or frozen wildlife products that carried the pathogen, and that there was no evidence of significant outbreaks in the country before December 2019. The theory the virus came from a laboratory leak was “extremely unlikely,” Peter Ben Embarek, a WHO official, told reporters Tuesday at a joint WHO-China briefing in Wuhan, the city where Covid-19 first mushroomed at the end of 2019. He said no further research or study is needed into this theory, which has been promulgated by some, including former U.S. President Donald Trump.
What Are Vaccine Passports and How Would They Work?
Iain Marlow and Jason Gale – Bloomberg
With millions being vaccinated against Covid-19 every day, some political and business leaders are suggesting nations can help get life back to normal by rolling out a so-called vaccine passport: an easily accessible and verifiable certification that a person’s been inoculated. Private companies are already beginning to look at making shots mandatory for people who want to get on planes, cruise ships or attend events such as concerts. A handful of projects from governments, private firms and international associations are currently underway. But the idea raises scientific and ethical questions.
Travellers entering UK face tougher Covid testing rules; New regulations to tackle spread of variants will demand all take 2 follow-up tests on top of pre-flight checks
Jim Pickard and Alice Hancock and Arthur Beesley – FT
All travellers entering the UK from abroad will have to take two Covid-19 tests after arriving in the country as the government seeks to bolster its borders against new variants of the disease.
NHS Covid app prevented 600,000 infections, claim researchers; Study finds link in areas of England and Wales between high app usage and lower case numbers
Tim Bradshaw and Siddharth Venkataramakrishnan – FT
The NHS contact-tracing app has prevented the transmission of hundreds of thousands of Covid-19 cases in England and Wales, researchers have estimated, in one of the world’s first studies of efficacy of the smartphone-based system developed in conjunction with Apple and Google.
Coronavirus Likely Came From Animal, Not Laboratory, WHO Says; Preliminary assessment follows two-week visit by team of experts to Wuhan, China
Jeremy Page, Chao Deng and Drew Hinshaw – WSJ
The virus that causes Covid-19 most likely jumped from one animal to another before entering the human population and is highly unlikely to have leaked from a laboratory, a leader of a World Health Organization investigative team said at a news conference in the Chinese city of Wuhan.
Low Covid Infection Rates Seen in Daycare, French Study Finds
Jill Shah – Bloomberg
Covid rates among children, staff similar to wider population; Study may give support as Biden promises to open schools
Children and staff at French daycare centers that stayed open during the country’s first national lockdown had low rates of Covid-19, according to a study that gives some support to efforts to reopen preschools and other educational settings.
Exchanges, OTC and Clearing
JP Morgan executive appointed CEO of HKEX; Nicolas Aguzin joins Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing as chief executive officer after 30 years at JP Morgan.
Annabel Smith – The Trade
The chief executive of JP Morgan’s private bank business, Nicolas Aguzin, is set to become the new CEO of Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing (HKEX). Aguzin will serve a term of three years, from 24 May this year until 23 May 2024, subject to the approval from the Securities and Futures Commission.
Appointment of Chief Executive
Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited (HKEX) is pleased to announce today (Tuesday) the appointment of Mr Alejandro Nicolas Aguzin (Nicolas Aguzin or Mr Aguzin) as Chief Executive of HKEX, effective 24 May 2021 for a term of three years until 23 May 2024, subject to the approval of the Securities and Futures Commission. Mr Aguzin, subject to such approval, will also become an ex-officio member of the HKEX Board of Directors (the Board) effective 24 May 2021.
Cboe EDGX Equities Exchange To Introduce Early Trading Hours, Beginning March 8
PR Newswire (press release)
Cboe Global Markets, Inc., a market operator and global trading solutions provider, today announced plans to introduce early trading on Cboe EDGX Equities Exchange beginning at 4:00 a.m. ET, with order acceptance beginning at 3:30 a.m. ET, starting Monday, March 8, pending regulatory approval. Currently, Cboe EDGX commences its early trading session at 7:00 a.m. ET and begins accepting orders at 6:00 a.m. ET. The move to expand early trading hours on Cboe EDGX, beginning March 8, aims to meet growing customer demand particularly among retail investors throughout the world, who seek to execute their trading strategies on Cboe’s U.S. equities markets during global trading hours.
Hydrogen-Refueling-Solutions (HRS) lists on Euronext Growth Paris – Largest IPO on Euronext Growth Paris since the creation of the market segment
Euronext today congratulates Hydrogen-Refueling-Solutions, the French company specialising in hydrogen refuelling stations, on its listing on Euronext Growth Paris (ticker code: ALHRS).
Cambi lists on Euronext Growth Oslo
Cambi has today been admitted to trading on Euronext Growth (ticker code: CAMBI). Cambi delivers solutions for sewage sludge and organic waste management. “Ever since 1992, Cambi has been working hard to develop the thermal hydrolysis process into an established technology for the treatment of wastewater solids and organic wastes. I am proud to see Cambi in better shape than ever before, with excellent prospects for growth,” says Per Lillebø, President and CEO of Cambi in this listing video.
Equity index derivatives: Introduction of Eurex Daily Futures on KOSPI 200 Futures; Eurex Circular 013/21 Equity index derivatives: Introduction of Eurex Daily Futures on KOSPI 200 Futures
The Management Board of Eurex Deutschland took the following decisions with effect from 22 March 2021:
TMX Group Limited Declares Dividend of $0.70 per Common Share
The Board of Directors of TMX Group Limited today declared a dividend of $0.70 on each common share outstanding, payable on March 12, 2021 to shareholders of record at the close of business on February 26, 2021.
TMX Group Limited Reports Results for Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2020
TMXTMX Group Limited [TSX:X] (“TMX Group”) today announced results for the full year and fourth quarter ended December 31, 2020.
Toronto Stock Exchange, TSX Venture Exchange, TSX Alpha Exchange and Montréal Exchange Closed for Family Day
Toronto Stock Exchange, TSX Venture Exchange, TSX Alpha Exchange and Montréal Exchange will be closed on Monday, February 15, 2021 for Family Day.
Delisting of Securities of Tandy Leather Factory, Inc. and Technical Communications Corporation from The Nasdaq Stock Market
The Nasdaq Stock Market announced today that it will delist the common stock of Tandy Leather Factory, Inc. Tandy Leather Factory, Inc.’s common stock was suspended on August 13, 2020 and has not traded on Nasdaq since that time.
Nasdaq Receives Investment Canada Act Approval and Announces Expected Closing Date for its Acquisition of Verafin
Nasdaq, Inc. (Nasdaq: NDAQ), a global technology company, announced today that the Minister of Industry has approved the previously announced proposed acquisition of Verafin, an industry pioneer in anti-financial crime management solutions, in accordance with the terms of the Investment Canada Act. The approval was the last regulatory approval required for the proposed acquisition.
SGX reports market statistics for January 2021
SDAV posts 12th consecutive month of gains; Derivatives volume across multiple asset classes rises to four-month high
Singapore Exchange (SGX) today released its market statistics for January 2021. Securities daily average value (SDAV) gained year-on-year (y-o-y) for a 12th straight month as investors weighed the outlook for a post-pandemic global economic recovery. Derivatives volume across multiple asset classes rose to a four-month high.
SGX, Trumid and Hillhouse Capital form joint venture to launch new Asian bond trading platform
To be launched in 2021, the Trumid XT platform will bring connectivity and efficiency to global bond markets
Singapore Exchange (SGX), Trumid and Hillhouse Capital have formed a joint venture, XinTru, to enhance liquidity and execution in the Asian bond market for global clients. This partnership combines Trumid’s cutting-edge technology and fixed income expertise, SGX’s deep experience in Asian financial market infrastructure and electronic trading, and Hillhouse’s expertise and network in Asia and the financial services sector.
SGX welcomes Livingstone Health Holdings Limited to Catalist
Singapore Exchange (SGX) today welcomed Livingstone Health Holdings Limited to its Catalist under the stock code “PRH”.
Based in Singapore, Livingstone Health Holdings Limited is a multidisciplinary specialist healthcare group, which focuses on aesthetics and wellness, anaesthesiology and pain management, family medicine, internal medicine as well as orthopaedic surgery. The group has 15 medical doctors practising at 12 medical clinics and one medical spa in Singapore. The group also provides other paramedical products and services such as physiotherapy services, and has a joint venture that offers aesthetics and wellness services in Cambodia.
Notice of Disciplinary Action
NON-MEMBER: SKANDINAVISKA ENSKILDA BANKEN AB
NYMEX RULE VIOLATION: 562. POSITION LIMIT VIOLATIONS
Any positions in excess of those permitted under the rules of the Exchange shall be deemed position limit violations.
PENALTY: In accordance with the settlement offer, the Panel ordered SEB to pay a fine to the Exchange in the amount of $8,000.
Notice of Disciplinary Action
CORNERSTONE FUTURES LLC
EXCHANGE RULE: RULE 526. – BLOCK TRADES
The Exchange shall designate the products in which block trades shall be permitted and determine the minimum quantity thresholds for such transactions. The following shall govern block trades:
PENALTY: In accordance with the settlement offer, the Panel ordered Cornerstone to pay a fine to the Exchange in the amount of $40,000.
Effective Dates for Spot Month Position Limits in the March 2021 Core Products
Spot month limits are effective at the close of trading on the dates listed (in chronological order):
Product Modification Summary: Reduction of Block Trade Minimum Quantity Threshold Levels for the Random Length Lumber Futures and Options on Random Length Futures Contracts
Reduction of Block Trade Minimum Quantity Threshold Levels for the Random Length Lumber Futures and Options on Random Length Futures Contracts.
Notice of Disciplinary Action
MEMBER: Voloridge Investment Management LLC
CBOT VIOLATION: 562. Position Limit Violations (in part)
Any positions in excess of those permitted under the rules of the Exchange shall be deemed position limit violations.
PENALTY: In accordance with the settlement offer, the Panel ordered Voloridge to pay a fine in the amount of $25,000 and disgorgement in the amount of $72,318.
MEMBER: JD Heiskell Holdings LLC
CBOT RULE VIOLATIONS: 538.C. Related Position
The related position component of an EFRP must be the cash commodity underlying the Exchange contract or a by-product, a related product or an OTC derivative instrument of such commodity that has a reasonable degree of price correlation to the commodity underlying the Exchange contract. The related position component of an EFRP may not be a futures contract or an option on a futures contract.
PENALTY: In accordance with the settlement offer, the Panel ordered JD Heiskell to pay a fine of $25,000.
CME Group Expands CVOL Suite of Implied Volatility Indexes to Include Energy, Metals and Agricultural Benchmarks, Adds Additional Fixed Income Indexes
CME Group, the world’s leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace, today announced the publication of 11 additional implied volatility benchmark indexes to its suite of CME Group Volatility Indexes (CVOL). Clients can now access two years of historical implied volatility data on CME Group’s CVOL indexes on WTI Light Sweet Crude Oil, Henry Hub Natural Gas, Gold, Silver, Corn, Soybeans and Wheat, along with the addition of both 5-Year and 30-Year Treasuries. Together with the previously introduced indexes on 10-Year Treasuries and FX currency pairs, CME Group now offers 19 CVOL Indexes across five asset classes. “Our clients continue to demand additional im
NatWest Markets automates pre-trade workflows with ipushpull; Alongside the implementation, ipushpull confirmed it had appointed a former NatWest Markets executive to lead its technical sales and product development for the solution.
Annabel Smith – The Trade
NatWest Markets has implemented a pre-trade workflow tool from data sharing platform, ipushpull, that will automate negotiations between its trading desk and the buy-side.
First New York chooses Eventus Systems for trade surveillance
Multi-asset class investment firm deploys Validus platform to meet complex needs
Eventus Systems, Inc., an award-winning global provider of multi-asset class trade surveillance and market risk solutions, announced today that First New York, a multi-asset class investment firm, has deployed the Validus platform to meet its global trade surveillance needs. The firm has begun using the cloud-based version of the platform for futures and will soon leverage Validus to surveil all of its equities and equity options trading activity as well.
Natwest Markets trading desk adopt PPQ from ipushpull; ipushpull launch pre-trade workflow solution and hire former head of GBP Inflation Trading
ipushpull, the live data sharing and real-time workflow automation platform, are delighted to announce that Natwest Markets have implemented their newly launched PPQ (Pushpull Quotes) workflow solution that streamlines manual workflow around non-standard, complex trades. At the same time Neil Weatherall has been hired to lead technical sales and PPQ product development.
A Brief History of Elon Musk’s Devotion to the Crypto Cause
Kristine Servando – Bloomberg
Bitcoin surged to a record on Tuesday above $48,000 after Tesla Inc. announced a $1.5 billion investment. That capped Elon Musk’s years-long flirtation with cryptocurrencies, which has mostly played out in Twitter memes — some of them market-moving.
Bitcoin Is the Scarcest Asset, MicroStrategy CEO Saylor Says
Olivia Raimonde and Joe Weisenthal – Bloomberg
Software company was one of the earliest to invest in crypto; Tesla announced a $1.5 billion purchase of the token Monday
Elon Musk made waves with Tesla Inc.’s announcement that it bought $1.5 billion of Bitcoin, but he is far from the first chief executive to use his rainy day fund to invest in the world’s largest cryptocurrency. “In an expansionary, monetary environment, you want scarce assets,” said Michael Saylor, MicroStrategy Inc.’s chief executive officer, in an interview on Bloomberg Television. “The scarcest asset in the world is Bitcoin. It’s digital gold.”
Apple Should Create Crypto Exchange and Buy Bitcoin, Says RBC
Ryan Vlastelica – Bloomberg
RBC’s Steves sees multi-billion-dollar opportunity for Apple; Bitcoin prices soar and hit record after Tesla investment
Apple Inc. should follow in Tesla Inc.’s footsteps, but by getting into cryptocurrencies, not electric vehicles, according to RBC Capital Markets. The iPhone maker could create a sizable new market for growth if it were to develop its Apple Wallet into a crypto exchange, said analyst Mitch Steves.
What Is Dogecoin, How to Say It, and Why It’s No Longer a Joke (Thanks, Elon!); The cryptocurrency was created for laughs, serves no purpose, and is now worth more than Western Union or Under Armour
Caitlin Ostroff – WSJ
Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk won’t stop tweeting about Dogecoin. Rapper Snoop Dogg put online a mock album image captioned “Snoop Doge.” And Gene Simmons, co-founder of the rock band Kiss, calls himself the “God of Dogecoin.” So, what is dogecoin, and why are people so excited about it? We’ve got answers to your questions about the cryptocurrency that has the internet abuzz.
Cardano, Polkadot Market Caps Surpass XRP as Some Bet on Alternatives to Ethereum; The price of gas continues to rise on Ethereum, squeezing smaller retail traders using DEXs.
Muyao Shen – Coindesk
Cardano (ADA) and polkadot (DOT) are now fourth- and fifth-most valued crypto assets, respectively, after they both surpassed XRP in market capitalization earlier Monday. That’s due to the recent rally in decentralized finance (DeFi) and the increased cost of using the Ethereum blockchain. According to data from analytics site Messari, cardano’s market cap stands at approximately $21.82 billion while and polkadot’s is at roughly $19.83 billion. For XRP, that figure is about $16.36 billion. The latest rally of the two cryptocurrencies of these public blockchains is not “idiosyncratic pumps,” according to investors and analysts who spoke to CoinDesk, but is a bet on these public blockchains’ “Ethereum-killer” narrative. Investors and traders are increasingly viewing Ethereum’s blockchain as too expensive and difficult to use while decentralized finance (DeFi), usually built on Ethereum, continues to boom.
Binance voluntarily drops defamation legal case against Forbes
Aislinn Keely – The Block
Binance has dropped its defamation lawsuit against Forbes, according to a court filing dated Feb. 4. Binance sued Forbes Media and two of its writers in November of last year. The suit was in response to a story by Michael del Castillo and Jason Brett that claimed Binance “conceived of an elaborate corporate structure designed to intentionally deceive regulators.” Binance called the story “false, misleading and highly defamatory,” and alleged the story caused losses totaling in the millions.
CME saw nearly 400 ETH futures contracts traded on first full market day
Aislinn Keely – The Block
CME’s ether (ETH) futures product saw 388 contracts traded on its opening day, according to Tim McCourt, CME’s Managing Director and Global Head of Equity Products. That’s about 19,400 ETH, or $33 million. “The response to Ether has been overwhelming,” said McCourt. Monday marked the first full trading day of CME’s ether (ETH) futures product, with initial trading having begun at 6:00 PM ET on Sunday. The derivatives exchange first announced plans to launch ETH futures in mid-December. The contracts — each representing 50 ETH — are cash-settled and based on the CME CF Ether-Dollar Reference Rate — the platform’s price discovery mechanism for ETH. There’s a minimum block trade of five contracts.
Nigeria Cracks Down on Cryptocurrency
Baker McKenzie – Lexology.com
In a February 5, 2021 letter, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) warned all banks in the country that that they are prohibited from dealing in cryptocurrencies or facilitating payments for cryptocurrency exchanges. Thus, all banks and other financial institutions were directed to identify persons transacting in or operating cryptocurrency exchanges and make sure that such accounts were closed. The letter included a warning that breaches of the directive would “attract severe regulatory sanctions.”
Feds’ $3 billion Bitcoin seizure tied to corrupt federal agents
Jeff John Roberts – Fortune
The U.S. Justice Department sent ripples through the cryptocurrency world in November when it announced it had seized nearly 70,000 Bitcoins from a person the agency would identify only as “Individual X.” Now, new clues point to who may have owned the stash, which today is worth more than $3 billion. According to recent court filings in the forfeiture case, the proceedings are related to a criminal case involving two corrupt federal agents: Shaun Bridges, who worked for the Secret Service; and Carl Mark Force IV, formerly of the Drug Enforcement Administration. Both men were investigators in a case involving Silk Road, a notorious online drug bazaar, but both went to prison for conducting crime sprees of their own involving extortion and robbery.
Ethereum Accounted for 80% of Weekly Crypto Inflows; The total investment into crypto-related products totaled $245 million last week.
Bilal Jafar – Finance Magnates
Ethereum attracted around 80% of the total weekly crypto inflows last week after institutional investors shifted focus towards the world’s second-largest crypto asset. ETH attracted $195 million last week, out of a total of $245 million. According to the latest report published by CoinShares, Bitcoin saw $42 million in inflows last week, its lowest weekly inflows since 8 January 2021. Despite the lower weekly inflows in BTC, the report saw little evidence of profit-taking. Institutional demand for Ethereum has been on the rise since the start of 2021. Grayscale, the world’s largest digital assets management firm, reopened its Ethereum Trust in late January, and the company accumulated 108,546 ETH in the last 7 days.
Apple Should Launch Own Crypto Exchange, RBC Analyst Says
Nathan DiCamillo – Coindesk
Apple (AAPL), the maker of hot-selling items from iPhones to tablets, is the world’s largest publicly traded company, with a market capitalization of $2.3 trillion. So it almost seems natural that after the electric vehicle maker Tesla announced Monday a $1.5 billion purchase of bitcoin, at least one Wall Street analyst is running the math on whether Apple might benefit from jumping into the cryptocurrency fray. A new report from the brokerage firm RBC Capital Markets posits that Apple, which already provides payments wallets for millions of consumers in an economy that’s gone increasingly cashless since the coronavirus pandemic hit in early 2020, might be able to easily generate more than $40 billion from the cryptocurrency business. The company’s move could also help to make the U.S. a technological leader in cryptocurrencies for the next decade or two.
BitMEX Introduces Data Storage Framework for FATF’s Travel Rule
Ian Allison – Coindesk
Crypto exchange BitMEX has published a framework of principles for how best to store additional batches of transactional provenance data, a requirement exchanges face as part of new anti-money laundering (AML) rules. In order to fall in line with the rest of the financial system, virtual asset service providers (VASPs) have been asked to obtain, hold and exchange information about the originators and beneficiaries of transactions, known colloquially as the “Travel Rule.” Global anti-money laundering watchdog, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) expects the crypto industry to implement the new rule by June 2021.
Elon Musk’s Bitcoin Bet Is a Bean Counter’s Nightmare; Tesla is taking a massive financial risk, but it should be allowed to record the value of its Bitcoin in its accounts at the current market price.
Chris Bryant – Bloomberg
Elon Musk’s decision to invest $1.5 billion of Tesla Inc.’s cash in bitcoin is financial dynamite that unites two speculative bubbles. There’s plenty to suggest the move is inadvisable. Though small in the context of Tesla’s $830 billion market value, this is still a material portion of Tesla’s $19.4 billion cash reserves to park in such a volatile asset.
Bitcoin Too Volatile to be ‘Medium of Exchange,’ Goldman Sachs Says
Scott Reeves – Newsweek
New York investment bank Goldman Sachs says Bitcoin’s wild price swings show that it’s not a store of value, echoing earlier comments by a British governmental watchdog and the European Central Bank that investors should be prepared to lose everything they put into the cryptocurrency.
Miami Mayor Who Backs Bitcoin Wants City to Hold Crypto Assets
Jonathan Levin – Bloomberg
Miami Mayor Francis Suarez said he is working on a resolution to add Bitcoin to the city’s balance sheet. He said the matter would be addressed at a city commission meeting on Thursday, according to a comment on Twitter in response to another tweet suggesting the time had come.
The Possible Xinjiang Coal Link in Tesla’s Bitcoin Binge
Dan Murtaugh – Bloomberg
Almost a quarter of Bitcoin is produced in China’s Xinjiang; Controversial region offers cheap power from plentiful coal
There’s a pretty good chance that any new Bitcoin generated after the cryptocurrency’s Elon Musk-aided surge toward $50,000 will be sourced using cheap coal power in China’s Xinjiang. The region that’s become notorious in recent years for complaints about abuse of Uyghur Muslim minorities is also a hub for the production of Bitcoin. Nearly two-thirds of global output took place in China as of April 2020, according to University of Cambridge researchers, and about one-third of that occurred in Xinjiang.
How a dispute over a journalist’s emails risks undermining democracy; To hold politicians to account, we need a UK press that looks like our country
Marcus Ryder – FT
Covid-19 has given us a rare glimpse into people’s homes and the content of their bookshelves. During an online Downing Street press conference in May 2020, I spotted a picture of Marcus Garvey, one of Jamaica’s national heroes and arguably the originator of black pride and pan-Africanism, on the shelves of Nadine White, a journalist for HuffPost.
Facebook bans misinformation about all vaccines after years of controversy; Company will remove posts with false claims and groups with repeated violations will be shut down
Kari Paul – The Guardian
Facebook has banned misinformation about all vaccines following years of harmful, unfounded health claims proliferating on its platform. As part of its policy on Covid-19-related misinformation, Facebook will now remove posts with false claims about all vaccines, the company announced in a blogpost on Monday.
The Political Events That Will Impact Emerging Markets in 2021; The results of elections in nations from South Africa to Mexico will help determine the market winners and laggards.
Farah Elbahrawy – Bloomberg
Elections are set to dominate the political calendar in emerging and frontier markets in a year when investors’ focus turns to how quickly governments are able to lift their economies from the global downturn.
Ex-Banker Put on Interpol Most Wanted List in Cum-Ex Probe
Karin Matussek – Bloomberg
Germany launches public search for New Zealander Paul Mora; Step comes as ex-banker told court he won’t show up for trial
Former investment banker Paul Mora is the first Cum-Ex suspect placed on Interpol’s public list of most-wanted suspects as Germany launched an international search for him in an escalation of its vast tax-evasion probe. Judges last month announced an arrest warrant for the 53-year-old, who lives in his native New Zealand. He told a Wiesbaden court last year that he wouldn’t come to face the charges because of New Zealand’s low Covid-19 infection rate and argued that he wouldn’t get a fair trial in Germany.
German finance ministry lambasts regulator over Wirecard; Government issues rare public rebuke of BaFin for 2019 short selling ban
Olaf Storbeck – FT
BaFin’s ban on the short selling of Wirecard shares in 2019 was based on poor and insufficient analysis, Germany’s finance ministry said in a rare public rebuke of the country’s top financial watchdog. “In hindsight, further analysis and investigations into the validity of the information available to BaFin would have been necessary,” Sarah Ryglewski, parliamentary state secretary at the ministry of finance, wrote in response to a written inquiry by Green MP Danyal Bayaz.
Bailey ‘angry’ at inquiry head’s criticisms over LCF scandal; BoE governor tells MPs Dame Elizabeth Gloster was wrong and his apology was misrepresented
Matthew Vincent – FT
Andrew Bailey, the Bank of England governor, said he was “angry” and “disturbed” by criticisms levelled at him by a former Court of Appeal judge over his response to her damning report into the £236m London Capital & Finance scandal.
Holiday Reminder Regarding FINRA Market Transparency Reporting Systems
In observance of Presidents’ Day, FINRA’s Market Transparency Reporting Systems will be closed on Monday, February 15, 2021. Affected applications include:
ESMA organises workshop on “CCP margins and procyclicality in times of crisis”
The European Securities and Markets Authority, the EU’s securities markets regulator, is organising a workshop on CCP margins and procyclicality in times of crisis which will take place on 17 February 2021 from 2:30 to 6:00 PM (Paris time).
2021 Advertising Regulation Conference; 2021 FINRA Advertising Regulation Conference | Oct 14 – 15, 2021 | Washington, DC
FINRA’s Advertising Regulation Conference offers a comprehensive agenda designed for new and experienced communications compliance professionals. Industry and regulatory speakers facilitate interactive, forward-looking discussions on current practices, policies, priorities and rulemaking. The conference also provides the opportunity to network with industry peers and meet one-on-one with Advertising Regulation Department staff during office hours and throughout the event.
The Market Risk Advisory Committee Will Meet on February 23
The Market Risk Advisory Committee (MRAC) will hold a public meeting on Tuesday, February 23, 2021. The meeting will begin at 9:30 a.m. (EST) via teleconference in accordance with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s implementation of social distancing due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Acting Chairman Rostin Behnam is the sponsor of the MRAC.
Educational resources, common deficiencies and other important regulatory information for CPO and CTA Members
NFA is committed to providing its Members with the resources they need to meet their regulatory obligations as efficiently as possible. This Notice covers educational resources, common deficiencies and links to Notices to Members regarding recent amendments to NFA Rules and Interpretive Notices.
FCA launches High Court proceedings against Paul Steel and Jacqueline Foster
The FCA has commenced civil proceedings in the High Court against Paul Steel and Jacqueline Foster.
Update on Bank of England and FCA Memorandum of Understanding on the supervision of market infrastructure and payment systems
Domestically, the Bank of England co-operates with both the FCA and Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) in relation to supervising market infrastructure and payment systems respectively.
Investing and Trading
Corn and Soy Bulls Look to New U.S. Forecast to Sustain Sizzle
Kim Chipman, Tatiana Freitas, and Michael Hirtzer – Bloomberg
South American harvests and U.S. exports in WASDE spotlight; China’s skyrocketing U.S. crop purchases are depleting supply
China, the world’s biggest buyer of commodities, has been purchasing so much American corn and soy that supplies may shrink to fresh multi-year lows in the U.S.’s worldwide crop forecasts Tuesday.
Wall Street Is Investing Billions to Scale Tiny Mom-and-Pop Sellers on Amazon; Investors say they can take up-and-comers, who often operate out of their garages, and transform them into global brands.
Spencer Soper – Bloomberg
Some of the biggest names on Wall Street and in Silicon Valley—JPMorgan Chase, Advent International, Khosla Ventures among them—are pumping billions of dollars into mom-and-pops selling everything from tea kettles to jock itch remedies on Amazon.com Inc.
North Sea Oil Sellers Quash One Pocket of Market Strength
Sherry Su and Alex Longley – Bloomberg
Earlier this month, a spate of buying of physical North Sea crude cargoes signaled a sudden tightness had appeared in the oil market. It wasn’t to last long. On Monday, traders lined up to offer six cargoes of benchmark North Sea crude in a pricing window run by S&P Global Platts. It’s a move that pushed down spot premiums for the grades, with some falling by almost 50 cents a barrel when normally they would move in single digits.
How the parting of two market forces helped spur the equity rally; Volatility boosts value of companies with options to invest in future projects
Michael Mauboussin – FT
The year 2020 will forever be associated with Covid-19 and the ills it caused to people and economies around the world. The outbreak of the pandemic led to the greatest contraction in global economic activity in decades and a precipitous fall in stock markets. More surprising to most was the extent of the sharp rally from March lows.
Investors set for commodities ‘bull run’ as prices rise in tandem; Broad-based recent gains have not been seen in decades and spur talk of ‘supercycle’
Neil Hume – FT
The broad upswing in commodity prices since the depths of the coronavirus crisis represents just the first leg of a sector-wide “bull market” fanned by government spending, analysts and investors say.
Covid-19 Mortgage Relief Ends Soon for Millions of Homeowners; Many who struggle during the pandemic won’t be able to resume paying their monthly mortgage bills when yearlong forbearance plans run out
Orla McCaffrey – FT
When Jen and Brian Bononi signed up to postpone their mortgage payments last April, they thought it would be for six months at most. Close to a year later, little has changed for the couple. Ms. Bononi’s autoimmune disorder makes finding another job as a social worker during the Covid-19 pandemic dangerous. And Mr. Bononi’s income as a behavioral-health counselor isn’t enough by itself to cover their monthly mortgage payment of roughly $2,000 on top of their other expenses.
GameStop, Reddit and the ‘Wisdom of Crowds’; It is a way of forecasting the likelihood of future events. It is particularly useful in markets where money is at stake
Simon Constable – WSJ
On Wall Street, “the wisdom of crowds” refers to the theory that large groups of people collectively are smarter than any individual expert when it comes to things like forecasting where stocks are headed. But, as the frenzy around GameStop Corp. GME -5.91% trading has shown, crowds also can become mobs—irrational or the opposite of wise.
Yield on 30-year Treasury Hits 2% for First Time Since Pandemic; Widening spreads between short- and long-term yields bode well for economy and banks but poorly for Treasury holders
Matt Wirz – WSJ
The yield of the 30-year U.S. Treasury bond pushed past 2% Monday for the first time since February 2020, before the coronavirus pandemic roiled government-debt markets. The move comes amid a recent surge in yields of longer-term Treasury bonds compared with short-term debt, as traders bet that government stimulus will accelerate a rebound in economic growth.
Analysis: Lost in the ‘Gamestonks’ mania – What is GameStop actually worth?
David Randall – Reuters
Shares of video game retailer GameStop Corp have been on a wild ride. Analysts who cover the company, however, remain unmoved from their conviction that the stock still has much further to fall before it meets reality.
U.S. Junk-Bond Yields Drop Below 4% for the First Time Ever
Carolina Gonzalez – Bloomberg
Investors are turning to risky debt in relentless yield hunt; Risk appetite has cleared the way for PIK notes, CCC deals
The average yield on U.S. junk bonds dropped below 4% for the first time ever as investors seeking a haven from ultra-low interest rates keep piling into an asset class historically known for its high yields.
Redditors’ Plan to Use GameStop Playbook for Glove Makers Unravels
Abhishek Vishnoi – Bloomberg
Top Glove gives up gains seen since Bursabets started; Short bets rose and retail investors sold last week: CGS-CIMB
A bid by Malaysian amateur investors to pull off a short squeeze-fueled rally in glove makers is fizzling out, just like the one by their American peers in GameStop Corp.
Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance
Biggest LNG Maker Hires Builders for $29 Billion Expansion
Verity Ratcliffe -Bloomberg
Qatar plans 43% capacity boost to stay on top in liquefied gas; Chiyoda and Technip awarded contract worth about $13 billion
Qatar hired engineers for a planned $29 billion expansion of its capacity to produce liquefied natural gas, seeking to cement its position as the world’s biggest supplier of the fuel. While Australia, the U.S. and other producers have been ramping up output, Qatar’s LNG capacity has stayed mostly flat for a decade. Gas, a cleaner-burning alternative to crude oil, is seen as an important fuel for bridging the global transition from petroleum to solar energy and other renewables.
Fossil Fuel Pollution Kills 8.7 Million a Year, Twice Previous Estimate; Fine-particle pollution is harmful even at lower levels, according to a global study
Eric Roston -Bloomberg
Efforts to slow the process of global warming focus on the future harms of continuing to burn fossil fuel, but new research released Tuesday shows that deadly consequences from pollution are killing larger numbers of people right now than had been assumed.
Total reports $7.2bn loss but keeps dividend; French group remains Europe’s only oil major to maintain its payout
David Keohane and Anjli Raval – FT
Total joined the list of oil majors reporting multibillion-dollar full-year losses, but it provided a rare glimmer of hope in the pandemic-stricken sector by beating fourth-quarter expectations and maintaining its dividend.
Oil majors join scramble for offshore wind rights in England and Wales; Record-breaking auction could deliver up to £8.8bn over 10 years to the Queen and UK Treasury
Nathalie Thomas and Anjli Raval – FT
Major oil companies have bid “staggering” prices to secure rights to build offshore wind farms around England and Wales in an auction that could deliver up to £8.8bn over 10 years to the Queen and the UK Treasury.
Deutsche Bank Reaps Bond-Market Rewards After Return to Profit
Alice Gledhill – Bloomberg
Lender prices notes at tighter spreads than in November deal; Bonds still carry premium versus other large banks’ debt
Deutsche Bank AG enjoyed the benefits of a return to profit, as it sold bonds for the first time since breaking a five-year run of annual losses. The lender issued two notes on Monday at spreads far below a similar sale in November after jumping into the market following last week’s earnings announcement. Investor orders closed at about 7.6 billion euros ($9.2 billion) across the 3 billion-euro offering.
Fallen angel ETFs face potential fall from grace; Stellar performance from last year is unlikely to be replicated if inflation suddenly returns\
Elena Losavio – FT
Investors who bought fallen angel ETFs at their lows in 2020 benefited from stellar returns by the end of the year, but a potential return to inflation could have a negative impact on this market in 2021, some industry figures say. The number of fallen angels — investment-grade bonds that have been downgraded to junk status — sharply increased last year when the bonds of a swath of companies in the energy, transportation, retail and leisure sectors were downgraded when the coronavirus pandemic hit, causing their price to slide. Yet while most of these bonds rallied later in the year, 2021 could be a different matter.
Robinhood Faces Wrongful-Death Lawsuit Over Young Trader’s Suicide; Company also faces class-action lawsuits over its decision last month to restrict trading in several highflying stocks
Peter Rudegeair – WSJ
The family of a 20-year-old student who took his own life after believing he racked up big trading losses on Robinhood Markets Inc. filed a lawsuit against the company, saying its “reckless conduct directly and proximately caused the death of one of its victims.”
Jefferies signs five-year deal with client management technology provider Tier 1; The expanded agreement with Tier 1 will increase the number of licenses at Jefferies by 50%, bolstering its client-first approach to relationship management tools.
Annabel Smith – The Trade
Investment bank Jefferies has expanded its partnership with client relationship management (CRM) technology provider Tier1 Financial Solutions to improve its client service model.
Wells Fargo Invests in Black-Owned Banks, Pledges Experts
Lananh Nguyen and Hannah Levitt – Bloomberg
Lenders can draw on Wells Fargo for financial, tech expertise; Black-owned banks have dwindled since the financial crisis
Wells Fargo & Co. made equity investments in six Black-owned banks as part of a broader $50 million pledge to support minority-focused lenders. The San Francisco-based bank will assign dedicated teams to provide the lenders with financial, technology or product expertise, it said in a statement Monday. Wells Fargo didn’t disclose the amounts of each investment.
Dire Bond Returns Have 60/40 Managers Juicing Portfolios With FX
John Ainger – Bloomberg
Pictet’s rationale for currencies focus: ‘We made a fortune’; Volumes suggest more debt investors are chasing allure of FX
It was a dinner conversation with former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke in early 2020 that convinced Cesar Perez Ruiz that the golden age of bond investing was over.
Biggest U.S. Banks Keep Lending Less and Less of Their Money
Shahien Nasiripour – Bloomberg
Total loans as share of assets decline to a record of 46%; Banks amass assets while their lending levels stagnate
The biggest U.S. banks reduced the portion of their collective balance sheets they’re dedicating to loans to a new low, extending a trend that’s seen the largest lenders put less and less of their firepower behind everyday borrowers.
Tesla Shows Deference to China After Years of Defiance in U.S.
Carmaker issues back-to-back apologetic statements in China; CEO has battled with SEC, NTSB and California officials
Tesla Inc. has issued back-to-back mea culpas in a matter of days in China, showing deference to government authorities in stark contrast with Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk’s years of combativeness in the U.S.
Hong Kong has been targeting China’s fast-growing biotech industry, which has attracted strong venture capital interest
Mercedes Ruehl and Hudson Lockett – FT
Biotechnology groups listed in Hong Kong have tapped funds at a record pace in 2021 as buoyant markets and rising interest from global investors bolster the Asian bourse’s challenge to Wall Street’s hold on the sector.
Amsterdam maturing as a financial jurisdiction
A Paris – The outlook for growth in the Amsterdam financial services industry is optimistic, driven by the Brexit fallout, an increased need for political stability and access to a diversified support eco-system which can help alternative asset managers thrive.
Indian police arrest man suspected of leading farm protest violence
Mayank Bhardwaj – Reuters
Police in the Indian capital arrested a man on Tuesday accused of leading a group of farmers who clashed with police and stormed the historic Red Fort last month during the worst day of violence in months of protests against agriculture reforms.
Radiohead warn Brexit ‘must not destroy’ music industry; ‘Europe was crucial to our growth as a band,’ said bassist Colin Greenwood
Ellie Harrison – The Independent
Radiohead’s bassist Colin Greenwood has written about the potential impact of Brexit on the music industry.
UK calls for reset with EU and ‘refinement’ of Brexit deal
Guy Faulconbridge, Elizabeth Piper – Reuters
Britain called on Monday for a reset in relations with the European Union and a refinement of a Brexit deal covering trade with Northern Ireland, saying trust was eroded when Brussels attempted to restrict COVID-19 vaccine supplies.
Brexit to negatively affect German-British trade this year: DIHK
Britain’s departure from the European Union has a negative impact on German-British business and a trade agreement can only partly compensate for the downturn, Germany’s DIHK Chambers of Industry and Commerce said on Tuesday.
London Broker Numis Plans Post-Brexit Hub for European Clients
Viren Vaghela – Bloomberg
Numis Corp. will open an office within the European Union to pursue business that would otherwise be cut off after Brexit. The London-based broker, which offers mostly small- and mid-cap U.K. equities, plans to open an entity in the bloc within the next 12 months, according to a regulatory filing Tuesday. “Brexit will have a minimal impact on our financial performance in the short term, however we believe comprehensive EU market access is strategically important for the business in the longer term,” the company said. Numis, which derives less than 5% of institutional income from EU-based customers, has been making use of temporary permissions, where possible, to trade with some clients in the bloc since the U.K.’s departure became effective on Dec. 31.
Brexit: Sinn Féin and DUP clash over Larne port threat
Conor Macauley – BBC News
Port workers carrying out Brexit checks who were withdrawn amid security concerns were used as pawns in a “very cruel game”, Stormont has been told. Sinn Féin MLA John O’Dowd made the claim during assembly question time. He said information which led to the removal of staff and suspension of checks had been based on “half-truths and misinformation”. He accused the new DUP agriculture minister of allowing the threat narrative to continue. Gordon Lyons did this because it suited his party’s “agenda”, said Mr O’Dowd. But the accusation was angrily rejected by Mr Lyons who described the comments as “disgraceful”.
U.K. Property Market Looks Poised for a Post-Brexit Comeback
Ruth Bloomfield – WSJ
Britain is trapped in its third national lockdown as it battles a more contagious strain of the coronavirus. Its economy is likely to shrink again in the first quarter. But analysts are still forecasting a strong real estate rebound this year. The biggest factor is that the U.K.’s deal to leave the European Union is finally completed, removing a political and economic uncertainty that has shadowed the market for years. Britain’s vaccination program is also moving forward and economists expect growth to accelerate in the second half of the year. The U.K.’s “settled new relationship” with Europe, plus low interest rates, will drive an uptick in commercial real-estate investment, said Miles Gibson, executive director of U.K. research for real-estate-services firm CBRE. The firm forecasts £48 billion, equivalent to about $66 billion, worth of investment this year, up 30% from £37 billion in 2020.
Brexit worse than feared, says JD Sports boss
The boss of one of Britain’s big retailers says Brexit has turned out to be “considerably worse” than he feared. Peter Cowgill, chairman of JD Sports, said the red tape and delays in shipping goods to mainland Europe meant “double-digit millions” in extra costs. He told the BBC the company might open a distribution centre overseas to help mitigate the problems, and that would mean job losses in the UK. His criticism echoes that from exporters and importers across the UK.
EU wants Big Tech to pay for news, Tesla’s bitcoin investment, SoftBank Vision Fund makes big gains; A rundown of the most important global business stories you need to know for the coming day, from the newsroom of the Financial Times. Available every weekday morning.
EU lawmakers want to force Big Tech companies to pay for news, similar to a move in Australia EU lawmakers want to force Big Tech companies to pay for news, echoing a similar move in Australia, Tesla’s $1.5bn investment in bitcoin sends the cryptocurrency to record highs, and oil hits $60 a barrel for the first time in a year. Plus, the FT’s Tokyo correspondent, Kana Inagaki, explains what drove SoftBank’s Vision Fund to have its best quarter in four years.
Boy Scouts Sex-Abuse Lawyers Decry ‘Intimidation’ From Insurers; Law firms representing victims of childhood sexual abuse say their claims hold up to scrutiny
Andrew Scurria and Peg Brickley – WSJ
Law firms representing sexual-abuse victims accused the Boy Scouts of America’s liability insurers of trying to intimidate victims from seeking compensation as the youth organization moves closer to proposing a settlement plan.