Chicago Topples Lightning Amid Thunder, Floods and Tornado Warnings
By John J. Lothian
The Chicago Blackhawks beat the Tampa Bay Lightning for the Stanley Cup last night in a stormy night in Chicago. Tornado warnings hit the city late in the afternoon as people were headed home for the day.
The basement of my house in Elmhurst flooded suddenly amid the drenching rains that hit the area. I did not get to watch the Blackhawks win the championship, as I was bailing out my basement.
The 2015 MarketsWiki Education World of Opportunity Summer Intern Education Series will be held in Chicago on August 4, 5 & 7. Save the dates. We will also be holding a one day event in New York on July 15. Details on sign ups and speaker lists will be coming soon. We will also be announcing dates for London events again soon. The MarketsWiki Education web site is in the final stages of a much-needed facelift. We hope to roll everything out together.
Trading Tech 300 has its first nine sign ups with the Chess and Public Speaking Merit Badges being offered by Advantage Futures on July 15. The maximum number of participants is 24, so if you have a Boy Scout, or a girl of the right age interested in Scouting, sign them up here
Patrick Lothian gets married this weekend in Ohio. The extended Lothian family will all be headed back to the state where my father grew up for the wedding. Jim Kharouf will be editing JLN on Friday as I will be in transit to the wedding and Doug Ashburn is off for the day, and the following week.
Patrick Young has reported in his newsletter that “Alan Whiting, Chairman of LIFFE, formerly an executive at LME and much else besides, died at the weekend from a recurrence of prostate cancer.”
A Fresh Look: Gate 39’s Stiles Brings New Tear Sheets and CTA Database To Managed Futures
Shane Stiles, founder of Gate 39 Media, hasn’t seen much he likes about the managed futures and hedge funds investor reports, so he built out a new tearsheet design application. Now he wants to help investors and fund managers find each other with a new database.
To see the full layout and design: click HERE.
Closing Time; Stories from Chicago’s Famed Trading Floor
By Lynne Marek, Crain’s Chicago Business
CME Group is closing 20 of its 35 pits in Chicago and New York on July 2. They are listed below. When CME Group begins dismantling more than half of its 35 trading pits on July 2, it will be a major step toward extinguishing a form of commerce that established Chicago as the financial center of the Midwest and helped define the city in popular culture as a place where savvy operators could make their fortunes.
***** Crain’s Chicago Business tries to make Chicago traders cry.
Meet the most athletic woman on Wall Street
JULIA LA ROCHE, Business Insider
Laura Placentra, a derivatives analyst and trader at Citigroup, won the title of “Wall Street’s Best Female Athlete” on Sunday at the Wall Street Decathlon.
****** What is it about derivatives traders being so strong?
Charitable Giving in U.S. Continues to Rise; Donations by Americans rose to a record $358.38 billion last year
By MELANIE GRAYCE WEST, WSJ
Mirroring growth in the domestic economy, charitable giving by Americans rose to a record $358.38 billion last year, surpassing a previous high of $355.17 billion in 2007, according to a closely watched annual report.
****** I received an email last week that said I was in the top 1% of JustGiving.com for the week. It was that Futures For Kids time of year.
Social gulf dividing Britain’s elite professions
In 1946 the writer George Orwell described Britain as the most class-ridden society on earth. The decades since should have eroded the stale obsession with where a person comes from, their parents or their mastery of social etiquette. Indeed, in 1990 a prime minister from a lowly background, John Major, arrived in Downing Street promising a “classless society”. This promise remains far from being fulfilled. While Britain may have shed its outward fixation with class, it remains beset by low social mobility. In few other countries does an individual’s background play such a decisive part in their future.
****** London’s tech-sector will help rectify this with an infusion of new money.
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64,127,634 pages viewed, 8,197 articles, 192,270 edits
Pope calls for cut in carbon emissions
James Politi in Rome, FT
Pope Francis will call for a “drastic reduction” in carbon emissions and lash out against “economic powers” that are opposing efforts to combat climate change, according to an early draft of his forthcoming encyclical on the environment.
Former AIG Chief Hank Greenberg Wins Moral Victory in Bailout Trial; Court rules government exceeded its authority in 2008 rescue of insurer, but awards no damages
By LESLIE SCISM, WSJ
Nearly seven years after the government’s 2008 takeover of American International Group Inc., Maurice R. “Hank” Greenberg won an unlikely victory in his legal crusade against U.S. authorities. But the former AIG chief and thousands of shareholders who joined his action didn’t win any of the $40 billion in damages they had sought.
Eurozone officials discuss holding emergency summit on Greece
Peter Spiegel in Brussels, Stefan Wagstyl in Berlin and Kadhim Shubber in London, FT
Eurozone officials are discussing holding an emergency summit on Sunday for leaders to tackle the crisis in Greece amid mounting fears a deal to break an ongoing impasse between Athens and its bailout creditors will not be reached at a high-stakes finance ministers meeting on Thursday.
Pimco Tells Regulators Runs on Mutual Funds a Nonexistent Risk
Regulators debating deeming Pacific Investment Management Co. and other large fund companies systemically significant are hung up on a risk that isn’t there, according to the bond giant.
Hank Greenberg scores pyrrhic victory in AIG lawsuit
Tom Braithwaite in New York, FT
Hank Greenberg, the 90-year-old former chief executive and largest shareholder of AIG, has scored a pyrrhic victory in his lawsuit against the US government over the terms of its 2008 bailout of the ailing insurance group.
U.S. judge tosses damages bid by ex-AIG CEO Greenberg over 2008 bailout
A U.S. judge on Monday ruled the U.S. government does not owe Maurice “Hank” Greenberg and other American International Group shareholders any damages over the company’s 2008 bailout.
Small US banks left behind by dithering Congress
Barney Jopson in Americus, Georgia, FT
Cruising past the leafy verges and homespun businesses of Americus, Georgia, a banker named Rick Whaley points to another building with parent-like pride. “This is a veterinarian that we put in business,” he says. “It was one of those gut calls community bankers make.”
FCA Chose Not to Chase Some Firms in FX Probe
By JULIET SAMUEL and MAX COLCHESTER, WSJ
The Financial Conduct Authority chose not to pursue all institutions involved in the foreign exchange rigging scandal, believing that targeting the worst cases would be enough to send a message of deterrence to all.
S.E.C. Finds Itself in a Constitutional Conundrum
By PETER J. HENNING, NY Times
The Securities and Exchange Commission may soon be confronting the adage “be careful what you wish for.” A federal district judge has for the first time found that the agency’s use of an administrative judge to hear an insider trading case is unconstitutional. The decision could hurt the agency in a number of administrative enforcement actions, including cases against prominent defendants like the financier Lynn Tilton.
Hayes told brokers to call in favours, Libor trial hears
BY ANJULI DAVIES, Reuters
Tom Hayes, the former star trader on trial on alleged Libor-rigging charges, asked brokers to wine and dine traders at other banks in order to help him distort benchmark interest rates, according to evidence presented in a London court on Monday.
ISDA rallies support for derivatives data reporting rethink
Eleven financial associations have published their support for a new set of derivatives reporting standards developed by ISDA, which is calling for greater cross-border harmonisation of data standards – even if that means some national laws will have to be amended.
Asset managers urge SEC to intercede with Fed on liquidity rule
A group of prominent investment companies asked the US Securities and Exchange Commission to make sure US banking regulators consider the impact of a pending liquidity rule on bond market liquidity.
CFTC’s Division of Market Oversight Extends Time-Limited, No-Action Relief for Swap Dealers and Major Swap Participants from Compliance with Reporting Obligations
The no-action letter provides that the Division will not recommend that the Commission take enforcement action against an SD or MSP for failure of such SD or MSP to comply with the requirements of regulation 45.4(b)(2)(ii) to report valuation data.
Senior Managers & Certification Regime briefing for professional advisers – 20 July 2015
At this event for professional advisers, we will discuss the Senior Managers and Certification Regime (SM&CR) and new Conduct Rules.
ASIC consults on remaking ASIC class orders on financial reporting
ASIC has today released a consultation paper proposing to remake five class orders that are due to expire (‘sunset’) in 2015 and 2016. The class orders affect the disclosures made in financial reports and the manner in which financial reports are presented to security holders.
Exchanges & Trading Facilities
ICE Benchmark Administration Announces Bank of China as a Direct Participant to the Gold Auction
Intercontinental Exchange (NYSE: ICE), the leading global network of exchanges and clearing houses, today announced that Bank of China has been approved by ICE Benchmark Administration (IBA) to participate in the gold auction which is used to determine the LBMA Gold Price.
Key Trading Milestones Reached in New Rapeseed Meal Contract
Euronext today announced that seven months after the launch of its Rapeseed Meal futures contract in November 2014, it reached key milestones in its growth on Monday June 15 2015:
Oslo Børs To Open A New Marketplace, Merkur Market
Oslo Børs is to open a new marketplace, Merkur Market, which will offer listing and electronic trading of shares and equity certificates for both small and large companies as a supplement to the regulated Oslo Børs marketplaces. The new marketplace will open in January 2016.
MOEX derivatives market hit by data issue
Futures & Options World
The Moscow Exchange (MOEX) has said that its derivatives market trading system was hit by a data issue late on Monday, causing some reference data to be “inaccurately displayed.” The exchange said that following the completion of the intraday clearing session at 14:03 MSK Monday, it identified that some data may have been displayed incorrectly on its derivatives market trading system.
Wallix Group Lists on Alternext Paris; Raises EUR 9.1 million, market capitalisation EUR 40.9 million
EnterNext, the Euronext subsidiary dedicated to promoting and growing the market for small and medium-sized companies (SMEs), today celebrated the listing of Wallix Group, a software company supplying cyber-security and governance solutions for access to information systems. Wallix Group listed on Alternext in Paris.
WSE waives fees for small stocks
Warsaw Stock Exchange has removed fees for market makers trading small and medium-sized companies in order to boost liquidity in those stocks.
Hedge Funds & Managed Futures
Net Outflows Befall 401(k) Plans
By KIRSTEN GRIND, WSJ
Withdrawals from 401(k) plans are now exceeding new contributions as baby boomers age, a shift that could have profound implications for the U.S. retirement industry. Withdrawals from 401(k) plans are now exceeding new contributions as baby boomers age, a shift that could have profound implications for the U.S. retirement industry.
CTA trading performance down in May – SG
Futures & Options World
Commodity Trading Advisors (CTAs) suffered a second consecutive month of losses in May as the sector was hit by challenging conditions in currency and bond markets, according to French bank Societe Generale. Societe Generale Prime Services which compiles the Newedge CTA indices said all of its main indices saw losses last month but they were less severe than those seen in April.
Guy Who Manages $112 Billion Sees No Bond Buyers
By Mark Gilbert, Bloomberg
If you haven’t realized by now that a lot of people are worried about bond-market liquidity, then I’m not sure why you’re bothering to read me. (You’re certainly not paying attention to my smarter and funnier colleague, Matt Levine.) But in the hope that you’ll at least start taking an interest in where your pension fund is hanging out these days, maybe you’ll listen when a guy who manages $112 billion tells you that if bad things happen in bond land, the fire doors might turn out to be locked.
It’s not just about administration anymore
There should be little surprise regarding the on-going trend of bank-owned hedge fund administration businesses being sold or put up for sale. There should be even less of a surprise to find that banks have been the acquirers of most hedge fund administration businesses, both bank-owned and independent, that have been sold. Both sides of this trend will continue.
Pimco to Watchdogs: ‘Consider the Pimco Experience’
By SARAH KROUSE, WSJ
It’s not surprising that Pacific Investment Management Co. says that asset managers and their funds should not be designated as systemically important. But what is interesting is Pimco’s reasoning.
When it comes to an adviser, low cost wins high praise
After much deliberation, you finally decide it’s time to work with a financial adviser. You’ve worked hard all your life to build your savings and you want an adviser who cares as much about your financial situation as you do. But how do you know who to hire? You’ve heard of Bernie Madoff and have seen The Wolf of Wall Street — are all financial advisers like that? They can’t all be about fees and commissions, right? Of course not.
Et tu, Robo?
Shaun Wurzbach – Indexology – S&P Dow Jones Indices
Many US financial advisors must feel like they are “under the gun” as the President and parts of his administration call for a stronger fiduciary standard. Simultaneously, I receive several emails per day on “robo-advisors” and how they spell doom for financial advice as we know it. I find the second challenge to financial advisors much more interesting. I’ll share my reasons for why I think that robo-advice may disrupt the business of some financial advisors.
Hedge Funds Like Cyber-Security Stocks, Says Goldman
By KRISTEN SCHOLER, WSJ
Hedge funds are placing bigger bets on privacy protection.
Banks & Brokers
OTC Global Names Sam Vogel Vice President of EOXLive Introducing Brokers
Vogel, who brings experience within the international and U.S. hedge fund, equity derivative and commodity derivative markets, will manage the ongoing growth and strategic development of EOXLive’s introducing brokerage business.
GFI COO departs in wake of BGC merger
Futures & Options World
US interdealer broker, GFI Group, has parted ways with its chief operating officer, just four months after its acquisition by rival US broker, BGC Partners. Ron Levi, COO of GFI Group has left his role at the company, after nearly 10 years in the position.
Goldman joins online lenders’ club
Ben McLannahan in New York, FT
Six months ago Goldman Sachs was a lead underwriter on the initial public offering of Lending Club, the biggest and brashest of a new breed of online lenders. Now the Wall Street titan is looking to disrupt the disrupters, launching its own web-based business offering loans to consumers and small businesses.
HSBC, JPMorgan may move parts of businesses to Luxembourg – The Times
HSBC Holdings Plc and JPMorgan Chase & Co are in talks to relocate parts of their businesses to Luxembourg from the UK as they weigh the possibility of a British exit from the European Union, the Times reported.
Clearing & Settlement
CME Group Clearing Advisories
- CME Account Manager Introducing Automated OTC Account Setup REVISED: /li>
- Reminder – SMART Click Migration: Positions – June 15, 2015/li>
- June 2015 Final Foreign Currency Settlement Prices – June 15, 2015
CCP Battle Drags On
The prolonged transatlantic battle over the mutual recognition of central counterparty clearing houses (CCPs) reflects deep differences over the costs of resolving a failing CCP. And asset managers may find that their share of those costs is on the rise.
Indexes & Products
GRAPHIC-China A-shares will be gamechanger for emerging market benchmark
Including Chinese mainland stocks in MSCI Inc’s emerging markets index will have a significant impact for global investors in funds tied to the index given the weighting and volatility of the shares, a Reuters graphical data analysis shows.
Strategic beta ETFs muscling out active strategies
Asia Asset Management
Institutions have been replacing active strategies with strategic beta ETFs; claims a new research report from global analytics firm Cerulli Associates (Cerulli). Jennifer Muzerall, senior analyst at Cerulli, explained that many institutional firms that were unhappy with the results from their active managers began seeking alternative approaches to risk-adjusted returns as part of the fallout from the financial crisis. “A number of institutional players started investing in strategic beta ETFs as part of this shift,” she noted.
Bond-Funded Buybacks Draw Skeptics
As investors size up the potential risks and returns of corporate bonds, some are keeping a closer eye on a new concern: what the company plans to do with the proceeds. Companies typically offer bonds to fund acquisitions, invest in their businesses or refinance debt. But a growing number are using them to fund dividends and stock buybacks.
London Tech Companies Lack Women in Senior Roles, Survey Says
by Kristen Schweizer, Bloomberg
One in four companies in London’s technology field employ no women at the board level, and 59 percent of those working in tech say their industry doesn’t reflect the capital city’s diversity, according to a survey.
Apple News service to hire team of journalists
Matthew Garrahan in New York and Tim Bradshaw in San Francisco, FT
Apple is hiring a team of journalists to run its Apple News service, part of a broader push by the company to personalise the content it selects and delivers to users of its devices.
Blockchain Tech could Save Banks $20B, says new Santander Report
Brave New Coin
“It is only a matter of time before distributed ledgers become a trusted alternative for managing large volumes of data,” argues Santander Innoventures, the venture arm of the Spanish bank Santander, in a new paper. In collaboration with fintech venture fund Anthemis and research firm Oliver Wyman, the report, titled The Fintech Paper 2.0, dived into how emerging fintech technologies, including the decentralized ledger behind digital currencies, could affect banks.
Investment Advisory Firm’s Former President Charged With Stealing Client Funds
SFX Financial Advisory Management Enterprises is wholly-owned by Live Nation Entertainment and specializes in providing advisory and financial management services to current and former professional athletes. The SEC Enforcement Division alleges that SFX’s former president Brian J. Ourand misused his discretionary authority and control over the accounts of several clients to steal approximately $670,000 over a five-year period by writing checks to himself and initiating wires from client accounts for his own benefit.
Swiss Trader to Pay $2.8 Million to Settle Insider Trading Charges
A SEC investigation found that Helmut Anscheringer purchased stock and call options in AuthenTec Inc. upon learning from a longtime friend related to an AuthenTec executive that Apple proposed to buy the company, which provided fingerprint sensors and software for use in electronic devices. The call options accounted for nearly all of the series volume on the days he purchased them. Just days later, AuthenTec publicly announced that it had agreed to become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Apple for $355 million in cash. The positive news led to the stock price closing approximately 60 percent higher than the previous day. Through his unlawful trading, Anscheringer garnered more than $1.8 million in illicit profits.
BT pays $20,400 penalty for misleading statements
BT Funds Management Ltd (BT) has paid $20,400 in penalties after ASIC issued two infringement notices for misleading statements contained in the online advertising of BT Super.
Hong Kong’s Securities And Futures Commission Reprimands And Fines Phillip Securities (Hong Kong) Limited $1 Million Over Mis-Selling Of Investment Product
The Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) has reprimanded and fined Phillip Securities (Hong Kong) Limited (Phillip Securities) $1 million for failings over its sale of a fund to four clients (Note 1).
FCA Fines Firms Over £1.47 Billion In 2014 – Average FCA penalty Value In 2014 Two And A Half Times Higher Than Previous Year
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) penalised firms a total of £1.47bn in 2014, according to the 2015 Global Enforcement Review published today by Kinetic Partners, a division of Duff & Phelps. In compiling the annual report, Kinetic Partners analysed publicly available data from financial services regulators across the UK, US and Hong Kong to determine regulatory trends and their effects on the financial services industry.
SEC charges Live Nation unit’s ex-president with fraud
The former president of a financial services firm owned by Live Nation Entertainment Inc, which serves current and former professional athletes, was accused by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission of stealing $670,000 from his clients.
Environmental & Energy
US crude futures volumes eclipse Brent
Gregory Meyer, New York, FT
West Texas Intermediate crude, once derided as a broken oil benchmark, is enjoying a comeback.
Even the Oil Rout Can’t Stop Houston’s Economic Boom
by Harry Weber, Bloomberg
Thirty years ago, times were so tough in Houston that Steve Zimmerman introduced the Oil Barrel Special, a three-course lunch tied to the plummeting price of crude.
As Tons of Bug-Infested Rice Rots, El Nino Threatens More Damage
by Luzi-Ann Javier, Supunnabul Suwannakij, Bloomberg
A rice glut that sent prices slumping more than a year ago is shrinking, just as El Nino arrives to parch paddies across Asia.
A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to an Oil Market Rebalance
By CHRISTIAN BERTHELESEN, WSJ
As oil prices collapsed last fall and winter, conventional wisdom in the market held that the global glut of crude would stop growing in the second half of 2015 and then shrink as demand picked up, bringing the market back into balance.
Asia-Pacific Wealth Overtakes Europe’s; The region recorded the fastest growth in wealth last year, with China alone minting a million new millionaires
by Malcolm Scott, Bloomberg
Private financial wealth in the Asia-Pacific region (excluding Japan) overtook Europe’s last year as China minted a million new millionaires, according to a study by The Boston Consulting Group.
Real Cost of Chinese Stocks Dwarfs 2007 Bubble
by Richard Frost, Bloomberg
Chinese stocks are getting a lot more expensive than the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index suggests.
Kuroda Says He Wasn’t Trying to Influence Yen Exchange Rate
by Toru Fujioka, Bloomberg
Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda said he wasn’t trying to influence the yen’s exchange rate in remarks last week that sent the currency climbing against the dollar.
China’s Stocks Cap Biggest Two-Day Loss This Month on IPOs
China’s stocks fell, capping the benchmark index’s biggest two-day loss this month, on concern valuations are outstripping earnings growth and a flood of share sales will lure funds from existing equities.
No Rush Into Saudi Stocks as Kingdom Gives Foreigners Access
by Ahmed A Namatalla, Bloomberg
The day the world’s biggest oil exporter allowed foreign investors direct access to its stock market, they bought shares in less than 5 percent of equities.
Vietnam’s Derivatives Market Continues Steady Development
Vietnam Briefing News
Decree 42/2015/ND-CP on the derivatives market has been issued by the Prime Minister. According to the new regulations, which will become valid in July, companies trading derivatives for profits in Vietnam must have chartered capital of at least VND600 billion (US$27.5 million).
FTIL stake in clearing entity to be moved to escrow account
The board of directors of MCX-SX CCL will hold an extraordinary general meeting on Tuesday to approve the transfer
Behind Colt’s Bankruptcy, Financial Engineering That Misfired
Private equity owners saddled the storied gunmaker with massive debt
by Paul Barrett, Bloomberg
The gun company founded by Samuel Colt has flirted with financial disaster for much of its 179-year history. Now the storied West Hartford (Conn.) maker of rifles and pistols is heading into Chapter 11, in large part because of more than a decade of dubious financial engineering and accumulating debt.