First Read

CME Europe CEO Robert Ray Passes Away
John Lothian
Longtime exchange and brokerage executive Robert Ray passed away Thursday of a cardiac arrest in Atlanta, according to sources.

Bob Ray, 60, was serving as the CEO of CME Europe at the time of his death. He moved to London to run the exchange’s European and Asian business interests a couple of years after the CME Group bought the Chicago Board of Trade in 2007. Ray was a senior executive of the CBOT at the time the CME acquired them.

Ray also worked in senior trading and derivatives business development roles with Robertson Stephens Inc., Dean Witter Reynolds Inc., Carr Futures and Continental Grain Company. He had also previously worked at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange from 1984 to 1986 as director of financial marketing and product development.

He was known for his humor and straight talk.

(For the rest of the article, and quotes from Peter Wind, Maria Gemskie, Bernie Dan, Walt Lukken and Simon Rostron, visit the JLN blog at )

***** If you have a reflection on Bob Ray you would like to share, for publication in the story above, please email me at .

***JM: See also the Bloomberg article at and the Financial Times article at


The Options Industry Council Announces Blair Hull As 2014 Sullivan Award Recipient
The Options Industry Council (OIC) today announced Blair Hull as recipient of the 2014 Joseph W. Sullivan Options Industry Achievement Award. This award is given annually to one individual in recognition of outstanding contributions to the U.S. options industry throughout his or her career.

***** One Hull of a choice!


CME director had ties to AlphaMetrix
Lynne Marek – Crain’s Chicago Business
A board member for futures exchange operator CME Group Inc. loaned money to now defunct AlphaMetrix LLC and considered consulting for the firm, which was later accused of misappropriating funds.

***** Dennis Chookaszian is exactly who I would want to be consulting with them as he is an expert in corporate governance. Any board or company would be lucky to have Dennis as a consultant or investor.


High-speed trader Infinium stops trading, winds down -president
High-speed trader Infinium Capital Management has stopped trading and is working to wind down the company, President Mark Palchak told Reuters on Thursday.

***** Infinium proves rather finite.


Regulator Deletes Broker’s Red Flags, Says Study
A Wall Street regulator is facing heightened pressure to overhaul its oversight of stockbrokers and better protect investors. The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority “routinely” strips out some possible red flags on brokers from its database in the information it makes available to investors, according to a study released Thursday by an organization of lawyers who represent investors in claims against brokers.

***** And this practice should change.


The Options Industry Council Announces Investor Education Day In Boca Raton March 22
Options are an ideal tool for a variety of investors and market conditions. The popular, and free, all day options education program is taught by experienced instructors from the various options exchanges and OIC professionals. This event is the first of two IED’s hosted by OIC this spring to help investors develop their knowledge and ability to responsibly trade options.

***** Darn, I will miss this as I return from Florida on March 19.


JLN/MarketsWiki 2014 Annual Survey – Please Give us 30 Seconds of Your Time
John Lothian News
You still have time to fill out our quick demographic survey and get in the running for your choice of an iPad Mini or a pair of Bose Quiet Comfort Noise-Canceling Headphones. The cost is a mere 30 seconds of your time. Answers will be kept confidential.


The Reality Behind the Stock-Picking Prowess of S.E.C. Staff Members
Is the Securities and Exchange Commission a warren for insider trading? If you’ve read recent headlines like “The Incredible Stock-Picking Ability of SEC Employees,” you’d think so. The likely truth, however, is that not only is no insider trading going on, but that the S.E.C. staff members are just as bad as the rest of us at picking stocks.

***** SEC staffers are made to sell stock before participating in an investigation? How about picking SEC staffers without an investment in the company? Good story explaining the above referenced story.


Three Potential New CFTC Commissioners, Including New Chairman, Provide Glimpses of Their Priorities before the Senate Agriculture Committee Today
Gary DeWaal and Associates LLC
The Futures Industry Association’s annual gathering of industry leaders in Boca Raton, Florida may not start until next week, but three potential new commissioners of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission – including the nominee for Chairman — had their inaugural day in the sun today in Washington, DC when they appeared before the US Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry.

***** I am missing Bart Chilton already.


Four Volatility Experts at CBOE on Wed. Mar. 26
Matt Moran – VIX Views
A panel discussion featuring four experts will survey the development and promise of volatility products. The panelists will include volatility product traders and users. The meeting will be held on Wednesday, March 26, from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. at CBOE, 400 South LaSalle Street in Chicago.

***** You have to be careful around volatility experts. They can go off at any time.


Orc would like to invite you to join our “friendly” NCAA tournament basketball pool. There is no entry fee to join. You will have a chance to win not only bragging rights, but a cool prize from Orc for the bracket winner. To join our NCAA tournament pool, simply fill in the bracket in this link by noon CT on Thursday, March 20. We chose Yahoo so you can also take part in the “Billion Dollar Bracket Challenge” . We will also be hosting a viewing party on Thursday, March 20 at 4 pm. Plan to come by Orc’s office for pizza and beer, poker, ping-pong, and to watch the games. Please RSVP by March 18 to

***** No money on the line, but lots of fun.



MarketsWiki Page of the Day
Daniel Maguire

MarketsWiki Recent Updates


Robert D. Ray; Leo Murphy; Jonathan Kellner; Fumiki Kondo; Michael Davie; Daniel Maguire; Helen Pound; Bluford Putnam

Companies, Organizations and Groups

Instinet; Nomura Securities International, Inc.; Trust Preferred Securities; SwapClear


CME Group Swiss Franc; CME Group South African Rand; CME Group Polish Zloty


47,483,815 pages viewed, 7,844 articles, 180,355 edits
MarketsWiki Statistics

Lead Stories

Banks launch clearing review after Korean broker default
Jeremy Grant in Singapore, Jung-a Song in Seoul and Philip Stafford in London –
The world’s biggest banks have launched an urgent global review of how clearing houses manage defaults after the collapse of a futures broker in South Korea left many banks shouldering far more than they expected to bail it out.

LSE’s fixed-income trading platform to acquire
MTS, the electronic fixed-income trading platform majority-owned by the London Stock Exchange (LSE), has agreed to acquire U.S.-based corporate and emerging markets bond trading platform

Massad Pledges Support for CFTC Commodity Speculation Curbs
Silla Brush – Bloomberg
Timothy Massad, the Treasury Department official named to head the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission, said he would work to approve speculation limits in oil, natural gas and other commodities that have been resisted by banks and parts of the energy industry.

Senate Panel Considers 3 Futures Commission Nominees
The Senate Agriculture Committee heard testimony on Thursday from President Obama’s three nominees for the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, a market watchdog that the president has called “small but mighty.”

Bank of America suspends senior FX trader in London: source
The worldwide investigation into allegations of manipulation in the global currency market took another twist on Thursday, as Bank of America suspended a senior trader in London, a source familiar with the matter said on Thursday.

BNP Paribas’s head of forex spot-trading suspended -WSJ
BNP Paribas, France’s biggest bank, has suspended its head of spot currency trading as part of a long-running global investigation into possible currency market manipulation, the Wall Street Journal said on Thursday, citing unnamed sources.

Bank of England’s dilemma in staying abreast of evolving markets
Delphine Strauss and Daniel Schäfer –
The Bank of England’s entanglement in the foreign exchange market scandal highlights the difficulties a central bank faces in staying abreast of markets while avoiding any hint of complicity in dubious practices.

Credit Suisse U.S. Clients in Limbo as Probe Inches Ahead
David Voreacos – Bloomberg
Thousands of Credit Suisse Group AG (CSGN)’s U.S. clients still don’t know whether tax authorities will learn their identities as prosecutors work to conclude a three-year probe of how the bank helped them evade taxes.


Regulator pressed on market abuses
Gina Chon in Washington –
US Senators on Thursday pressed nominees for the Commodity Futures Trading Commission to be tough on enforcement over market manipulation and fraud.

CFTC Provides Time-Limited No-Action Relief to Certain Affiliated Counterparties
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (Commission) Divisions of Clearing and Risk (DCR) and Market Oversight (DMO) today provided time-limited no-action relief to certain affiliated counterparties.

Crowdfunding rules arrive: angry face, sad face
Dan McCrum | FT Alphaville
The UK Financial Conduct Authority has published its long awaited rules for crowdfunders and peer-to-peer lenders. You can read the full policy statement here, but lets cut straight to some frothy outrage from Barry James, founder of the Crowdfunding Center.

Investor Or Owner? Why the Class-Action Case Has It Wrong
David Weidner – MoneyBeat – WSJ
If you own a company’s stock, do you consider yourself to be simply an investor, or an owner in that company? If you answered both – or thought perhaps they are the same thing – then consider what’s happening in the judicial system.

Brussels plans fresh rules on executive pay
Alex Barker in Brussels and Chris Bryant in Frankfurt –
Shareholders in listed EU companies would set the pay gap between executives and average employee pay under draft Brussels reforms aimed at giving more clout and information to investors.

National Futures Association: Late Disciplinary Disclosure Fees – Proposed Amendments to NFA Registration Rules 203 and 210

Testimony Of Acting CFTC Chairman Mark P. Wetjen Before The U.S. House Appropriations Subcommittee On Agriculture, Rural Development, Food And Drug Administration, And Related Agencies

Remarks At AIMA Global Policy & Regulatory Forum – SEC Commissioner Michael S. Piwowar, New York, NY, March 6, 2014

FINRA’s Statement on PIABA’s Public Disclosure Study

Exchanges & Trading Facilities

Robert Ray, London-Based CME Executive From Chicago, Dies at 60
Nandini Sukumar – Bloomberg
Robert Ray, the chief executive officer of CME Group Inc.’s proposed European exchange, has died, according to the company. He was 60.

Robert Ray, Chicago exchanges veteran, dies
Philip Stafford –
Robert Ray, head of the CME’s planned European futures business, has died after a short illness, the US group confirmed on Thursday.

Bob Ray Obituary: ‘A wonderful friend to so many in the market’
Michelle Price – Financial News
Robert Ray, the chief executive of the CME Group’s new European exchange who died on Thursday, was remembered today as a “very genuine, no-nonsense” colleague, a “fierce competitor” and a “true gentleman” by his friends and peers in the international futures industry.

Jonathan Kellner Named CEO Of Instinet Incorporated
Instinet Incorporated today announced the appointment of Jonathan Kellner as CEO. He replaces Fumiki Kondo, who has been designated to become head of Nomura Asset Management’s overseas client division in Tokyo.

Eris Exchange: March News
$10,000,000,000 Open Interest Milestone — Eris Market Liquidity Updates — Featured Trade: Calendar Spreads — Electronic Execution Contacts — Featured Article: THE TRADE — Eris Careers: Apply Today — FIA Boca Panel and Meetings

TMX Group Equity Financing Statistics – February 2014 – Toronto Stock Exchange, TSX Venture Exchange

Irish Stock Exchange Statistics February 2014

Oslo Børs: Continuing Growth In The Bond Market

Moscow Exchange Supervisory Board Candidate List Approved

MIAX Options Exchange: MIAX Options – Auto Cancel On Disconnect (ACOD) Feature Effective March 10, 2014

Borsa Italiana Monthly Update – February 2014

EEX Final Settlement Prices For Futures On Guarantees Of Origin March 2014

Moscow Exchange: The Additional Trading Session Starts Later On 14 And 17 March

Hedge Funds & Managed Futures

Billionaire Paul Tudor Jones Off To A Bad Start In 2014
Nathan Vardi – Forbes
Paul Tudor Jones II, one of the most successful traders ever, will often spend an entire day watching a projection of his hedge fund’s positions blinking as they change. But these days the billionaire philanthropist probably doesn’t like what he is seeing.

Founders Fund raises $1 billion for fifth venture fund
Founders Fund, the venture-capital firm behind startups like space exploration company SpaceX and data-mining company Palantir Technologies, said it had raised $1 billion for its latest fund.

Carlyle commodity fund Vermillion’s assets halved to below $1 bln
U.S. private equity group Carlyle said assets at its commodities hedge fund Vermillion fell by more than half in the nine months to December, suggesting investor redemptions at the fund after some negative returns.

Carlyle seeks to raise both debt and equity
Financial News
On the back of a sharp jump in fourth quarter earnings, Carlyle Group said it will raise both debt and equity, a move that reflects both the favourable market conditions for financing and the private equity firm’s intention to expand.

Pimco’s Gross declares El-Erian is ‘trying to undermine me’
Bill Gross, the co-founder and co-chief investment officer of Pacific Investment Management Co, has accused departing CEO Mohamed El-Erian of seeking to “undermine” him by talking to The Wall Street Journal about deepening tensions between the two executives who have been jointly running the world’s largest bond house.

Bill Gross ‘Comments’ Raise Questions for Pimco. Again
MoneyBeat – WSJ
For the second time in a week, Pacific Investment Management Company appears to have withdrawn words attributed to co-founder Bill Gross. Friday the firm issued a statement denying that Mr. Gross had made the comments Reuters attributes to him, in which he appears to criticize former chief executive Mohamed El-Erian for seeking to undermine him.

Britain says Scotland split would put Scottish pensions at risk
Scottish pensions would be put in danger if voters decide to split from Britain this year, a senior British minister will say on Friday in the government’s latest attempt to persuade Scots to reject independence.

Banks & Brokers

JPMorgan, UBS Convictions Overturned in Milan Swaps Case – Bloomberg
JPMorgan Chase & Co., Deutsche Bank AG, UBS AG and Depfa Bank Plc won a bid to overturn a conviction for overseeing fraud by their bankers in the sale of derivatives to the city of Milan.

Morgan Stanley U.S. Rate Swaps Head Olivier Pariente to Leave
Olivier Pariente, who led U.S. interest-rates swap trading at Morgan Stanley, has left the firm after four years.

Goldman discovers that money can buy respect
Gillian Tett –
This week Goldman Sachs passed a milestone. A philanthropic foundation that the bank created six years ago to support poor women around the world has provided funding to its 10,000th female entrepreneur.

Lloyds Bank Seeks to Swap More than $8 Billion of Bonds
The Lloyds Banking Group said on Thursday that it would offer to exchange as much as 5 billion pounds’ worth of bonds it issued to shore up its capital during the financial crisis for new securities or cash.

Citigroup says executives Stewart, McQuade to retire
Citigroup Inc said on Thursday that two long-time executives, Cece Stewart and Gene McQuade, are retiring from the company.

European Banking Authority Publishes Results Of The Basel III Monitoring Exercise As Of 30 June 2013

Chris Ferreri of ICAP to Speak at 2014 FIA Boca Conference

Clearing & Settlement

SEF Trading: Volumes Find Balance in Week 2
Colby Jenkins – TabbFORUM
Following a precipitous drop in Week 1 of mandatory trading, rate swap volumes on SEFs rebounded in Week 2. Meanwhile, evidence suggests investors increasingly are testing the swap futures waters.

Indexes & Products

Why the new shoeshine boy trade is shorting volatility
Izabella Kaminska | FT Alphaville
Chris Cole, of volatility fund Artemis Capital, has an insightful piece in the latest edition of the CFA Institute Conference Proceedings Quarterly warning about one of the most popular trades of recent times: the shorting of volatility via Vix ETPs.

NASDAQ OMX Global Indexes Now Available Through eVestment
The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc. a market leading provider of innovative, transparent indexes, announced the following 19 NASDAQ Indexes are now available to clients of eVestment’s suite of Analytic solutions for institutional investors:

Vanguard climbs US ETF league table
Sarah Krouse in New York – Financial News
Vanguard has overtaken State Street Global Advisors’ SPDR exchange-traded fund unit as the second largest ETF provider in the US for the first time.

Tel Aviv Stock Exchange: Tel Bond-Composite Index Constituency

According To ETFGI: Global ETF And ETP Assets Reached US$2.44 Trillion, A New Record High, At The End Of February 2014


ISI Group Implements Raptor Trading System’s Smart IOI Platform
Raptor Trading Systems, a leading provider of advanced Indication of Interest (IOI) solutions for the global financial community, today announced that ISI Group has successfully implemented Raptor’s SMART IOI service across it’s US locations, including Boston, New York and San Francisco.

Options Further Bolsters its Connectivity Between Weehawken and Secaucus as it Upgrades Route Between Both Venues


SEC Charges Five Executives and Finance Professionals Behind Fraudulent Bond Offering by International Law Firm
The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged five executives and finance professionals with facilitating a $150 million fraudulent bond offering by Dewey & LeBoeuf, the international law firm where they worked.

Madoff Staffers Shift Blame
The defense lawyers for five former employees of Bernard L. Madoff’s securities firm began their closing arguments Thursday by aggressively attacking the credibility of the government’s star witness in the fraud trial.

Environmental & Energy

Germany Eyes Carbon-Market Reserve Start Five Years Early
Brian Parkin and Mathew Carr – Bloomberg
Germany said an overhaul of the European Union’s carbon market to automatically tighten supply should begin at the latest in 2016, five years earlier than proposed by the bloc’s regulatory arm.

**JK – Raise your hand for a carbon fed!

To blunt Russia, time for American natural gas diplomacy
Paul Bledsoe and Lee Feinstein – Reuters
The American natural gas revolution has boosted economic competitiveness, and helped reduce U.S. carbon emissions to their lowest levels in 20 years. The question is now whether the United States will leverage this energy bounty to advance its foreign policy goals during the most serious East-West crisis in a generation.

Chief execs call on Cameron to end carbon budget uncertainty
Business Green
Chief executives at some of the UK’s largest companies have today written to Prime Minister David Cameron, urging him to confirm the government will not water down the fourth carbon budget ahead of an official review of the target.

**JK – One shouldn’t water down anything of significance.

Frontier Markets

Emerging World Poses More Danger Than in 1990s: Cutting Research
Simon Kennedy – Bloomberg
Developed economies are less resilient to an emerging-market shock than they were in the 1990s, when crises from Thailand to Russia rattled investors without triggering a global recession.

Forex futures may have longer trading hours to allow traders to align positions with US markets
The Economic Times
Currency futures, a paradise for traders, punters and corporates looking to cover exchange rate risks, could be in for a greater play in coming days.

Malawi Stock Exchange Weekly Trading Report- 07th March, 2014


Book Deal Falls Apart for Parodist of Goldman
Two weeks ago, with a huge online following and a new six-figure book contract, John Lefevre was riding as high as some of the Wall Street traders he parodied in his Twitter account, @GSElevator. On Thursday Mr. Lefevre found his newfound success had unraveled like a bundle of toxic mortgages.

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