John Lothian Newsletter: U.S. regulator underdisclosed improper loans to AlphaMetrix; CFTC Approves Tighter Commodity Trading Rules; KCG Mulls Selling Stake in Combined BATS-Direct Edge

Oct 31, 2013

First Read


SEFCON IV Snapshot
The Wholesale Markets Brokers’ Association Americas (WMBAA) is an industry advocacy group made up of five inter-dealer brokerage firms (IDBs): BGC Partners, GFI Group, ICAP, Tradition and Tullett Prebon. Since 2010, the WMBAA has hosted its annual SEFCON conference on issues surrounding swap execution facilities (SEFs), a new type of financial transaction execution entity created by the Dodd-Frank Act. SEFCON IV, on November 18, 2013 in New York, will feature a status update on SEFs from regulators, legislators, dealers, traders and other market participants. Conference chairman Chris Ferreri offers a glimpse as to what attendees can expect in this video with John Lothian News Editor-at-Large Doug Ashburn.

Watch the video »


Residual Interest Rule Cometh
Doug Ashburn and Jim Kharouf
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission took up the issue of enhanced customer protections today, finalizing a rule that would require futures commission merchants (FCMs) to adopt new risk management programs that relate to operations, capital and customers fund segregation.

***DA: After reading the commentary, click over to MarketsReformWiki for a full summary and links to more good stuff.


Trick or Treat? Grain hedgers haunted by the ghost of MF Global
Two years ago on Halloween thousands of U.S. grain farmers got the scare of their lives when broker MF Global collapsed and more than a billion dollars of their money went missing. MF Global customers have now, through a court-appointed trustee, recovered about 98 percent of the money, which had been in supposedly “safe” margin accounts. Looking back at Thursday’s anniversary of the debacle, U.S. grain hedgers fear there is little assurance they won’t be tricked again.

**JK: CCC’s John Roe talks down residual interest, on the day the CFTC passed residual interest rules.


U.S. regulator underdisclosed improper loans to AlphaMetrix: sources
The U.S. futures industry’s self-funded regulator underdisclosed by more than $2 million the amount of money that fund manager AlphaMetrix improperly borrowed from outside money managers, two sources familiar with the situation said.

**JK – An Energizer bunny story that keeps going, and going…


AlphaMetrix to Liquidate Fund Pools, Return Money to Investors
Matthew Leising – Bloomberg
AlphaMetrix Group LLC, which directs investor money to accounts run by money managers, will begin an “orderly liquidation” of its sponsored funds tomorrow, the firm said in an e-mailed statement.

**JK – There will some redemptions, but I doubt there will be redemption.


Quick view: Innovation the keystone for exchanges
Philip Stafford –
Deutsche Börse’s purchase of a stake in UK start-up Global Markets Exchange to develop swap futures may only have been at a cost of several million pounds but it signals an important juncture.


From Anonymity to Scourge of Wall Street
The architect of a recent legal crackdown on Wall Street’s dubious mortgage practices was not the attorney general, a United States attorney or a rising star in the Justice Department. Instead, it was Leon W. Weidman, an unassuming 69-year-old career prosecutor, toiling away in anonymity 3,000 miles from Washington.

**JK: If you want to dress up like a scourge for Halloween, this is what one looks like.

***JM: Wasn’t Ebenezer Scourge a Christmas icon?


The Money Pit
Global Trading
Night desks have an image problem. Around the world they toil while the rest of us sleep, but they are often regarded as the poor cousins of their daytime trading desks. Traditionally viewed as a service rather than a profit centre, firms have been reluctant to invest in them. Fidessa’s Lewis Richardson, Derivatives Product Manager, explores the global issue of loss-making night desks and examines how technology can not only stem those losses, but boost productivity and improve the bottom line.

**JK – Nice piece on night desks. And here I thought they just sat around playing Nerf hoops.


A Departed ‘21’ Club Fixture, Known for His Stories, Inspires a Few
Mr. Robinson, known to scores of “21” customers as the Rev, died Thursday at 71, shortly after delivering the eulogy at a service in Connecticut for a sister, officials at the restaurant said. The officials did not know the cause of death, and Jerelene Robinson, Mr. Robinson’s widow, did not immediately return a phone call on Tuesday afternoon.

***DA: “The Rev” was a NY icon who knew what made people tick. For non-New Yorkers, the 21 on E. 52nd is that restaurant in Wall Street where Gordon Gekko handed Bud Fox the million dollar check and lured young Buddy into his world.


CME Group to Host Sixth Annual Global Financial Leadership Conference – Oct 30, 2013
CME Group will host the sixth annual Global Financial Leadership Conference (GFLC) Nov. 18-20, 2013, at the Ritz-Carlton Beach Resort in Naples, Florida. The GFLC is an exclusive event that brings together decision-makers from the world’s leading financial institutions to discuss emerging geopolitical trends, debate critical economic issues and share perspectives on future developments in the financial marketplace.


Ed Tilly

Two-part Ed Tilly Interview
It has been half a year since Ed Tilly took over as CEO of the CBOE from Bill Brodsky, who moved to the newly created role of executive chairman. With six months under his belt, John Lothian News Publisher John Lothian sat down with him to talk about his new job, new initiatives from the CBOE and the challenges facing the industry.

WATCH: Getting Shorter: CBOE’s Ed Tilly Introduces Short-term VIX and Industry Taxes

WATCH: Taking the Reins: CBOE’s Ed Tilly Makes The Transition to CEO



MarketsWiki Page of the Day
World Federation of Exchanges

MarketsWiki Recent Updates


Eugene Kunda; Dax Rodriguez; Adam Rochlin

Companies, Organizations and Groups

World Federation of Exchanges; OppenheimerFunds; IEX Group


44,748,820 pages viewed, 7,692 articles, 167,077 edits
MarketsWiki Statistics

Lead Stories

C.F.T.C. Approves Tighter Commodity Trading Rules
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission voted 3 to 1 on Wednesday to finish rules proposed a year ago to protect customers, including measures to close loopholes, reinforce internal risk controls and force brokers to provide more information to clients.

KCG Mulls Selling Stake in Combined BATS-Direct Edge
Jacob Bunge and Nathalie Tadena –
KCG Holdings Inc. intends to eventually sell the trading giant’s investment in electronic exchange operator BATS Global Markets Inc., KCG’s chief executive said Wednesday.

Earlier Nasdaq Glitch Cued Talk, No Action
Jacob Bunge –
U.S. stock-market officials and regulators earlier this year may have missed a chance to head off problems related to a major glitch in August that stopped trading in Nasdaq Stock Market-listed securities for hours, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

Options Market Hit With Data Disruptions as VIX Lurches
Nikolaj Gammeltoft & Lu Wang – Bloomberg
Data transmission was snarled in parts of the options market today as one of the biggest U.S. venues reported issues disseminating prices while the industry’s benchmark gauge swung erratically three times.

***JM: This either needs to be news or not… but despite the sirens, if the users don’t really care all that much, then maybe it’s not really a big deal after all.

ICE postpones date of purchase of NYSE
IntercontinentalExchange, a futures market operator, has postponed the closing date for acquiring NYSE Euronext, operator of the New York Stock Exchange, to give more time for European regulators to approve the transaction, NYSE said.

Major dealers back Bats Chi-X’s reporting push
Tim Cave – Financial News
Six major dealers are expected to begin reporting their over-the-counter equity trades to Bats Chi-X Europe rather than Markit for the first time, in a strong endorsement for the exchange operator’s new reporting services.

Liffe launches coffee, cocoa warehousing review
Sarah McFarlane – Reuters
Exchange NYSE Liffe has launched a consultation into warehousing practices in the coffee and cocoa markets, it said in a notice published on its website.

Bank regulators propose tougher trading book rules
Banks using bespoke models for determining how much capital they hold to cover trading book risks should also use a standardised approach as a backstop, global regulators said on Thursday.

Leading Futures Commission Merchants in the US Seen Growing Larger Under New OTC Derivatives Market Reform Rules, Says TABB
Although business conditions for a US futures commission merchant (FCM) are capital intensive, transformative and hyper-competitive, according to new TABB Group research the leading FCMs in the US are seen on the verge of growing larger under new over-the-counter derivatives market reform rules.

Sins of past, present and future haunt banks
The cost to banks of cleaning up past misdeeds has soared over $100 billion and is leaving lenders running scared from areas that put them in potential danger of upsetting regulators.

Measure to ease Dodd-Frank swaps reform clears House
By Paul Merrion – Crain’s Chicago Business
The House of Representatives easily passed a bill today allowing banks to remain in most aspects of the swaps business despite White House concerns that it is premature and potentially disruptive to tinker with Wall Street reforms.


CFTC Announces Mutual Acceptance of Approved Legal Entity Identifiers
The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission announced in a Notice posted on the website on October 30, 2013, that registered entities and swap counterparties subject to CFTC swap data recordkeeping and reporting regulations concerning Legal Entity Identifiers can now comply with those regulations by using any LEI issued by an LEI provider endorsed by the Regulatory Oversight Committee of the global LEI system.

CFTC’s Division of Market Oversight Extends Time-Limited No-Action Relief to Australian-Based Trading Platform Yieldbroker Pty Limited
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s Division of Market Oversight today announced the issuance of a no-action letter extending time-limited relief for Australian-based trading platform Yieldbroker Pty Limited.

US CFTC Adopts More Stringent Customer Funds’ Protection Rules
Gary DeWaal and Associates LLC

Shake-up on charges for UK asset managers
Sam Fleming and David Oakley –
Britain’s financial watchdog will on Wednesday pledge a shake-up of the opaque way asset managers pass costs on to their clients after it uncovered “inherent flaws” in the existing system.

Shaping the Future in Asset Management: Keynote speech by Martin Wheatley, Chief Executive of the FCA, at the FCA Asset Management Conference, London.

Fair, transparent and competitive: the FCA’s vision for the asset management sector
Speech by Clive Adamson, FCA Director of Supervision, at the FCA Asset Management Conference, London.

CFTC Chairman Gary Gensler Statements Of Support – Ownership And Control (“OCR”) Reports, Forms 102/102S, 40/40S, And 71

Opening Statement, CFTC Commissioner Scott D. O’Malia, Open Meeting On Rules Enhancing Protections Afforded Customers And Customer Funds Held By Futures Commission Merchants And Derivatives Clearing Organizations

Dissenting Statement Of CFTC Commissioner Scott D. O’Malia, Enhancing Protections Afforded Customers And Customer Funds Held By Futures Commission Merchants And Derivatives Clearing Organizations

Statement Of CFTC Commissioner Mark P. Wetjen, Public Meeting Of The Commodity Futures Trading Commission

“The Law”Statement Of CFTC Commissioner Bart Chilton Regarding Customer Protections

[FCA] Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Bribery and Corruption Systems and Controls: Asset Management and Platform Firms
Preventing financial crime is a vital element to achieving our objective of protecting and enhancing the integrity of the UK financial system. Two areas where firms may be used to facilitate financial crime are money laundering and bribery and corruption.

ASIC Lodges Major Senate Inquiry Submission
ASIC today lodged its major submission to the Senate Economics Committee’s inquiry into the regulator.

ASIC In 2014: Areas Of Focus And Expected Changes To The Regulatory Landscape – A Speech By Greg Medcraft, Chairman, Australian Securities And Investments Commission, To The Governance, Risk And Compliance (GRC) Conference, 31 October 2013.

Exchanges & Trading Facilities

Stock exchange: Vienna bourse sees privatisation as big opportunity
Kester Eddy –
Michael Buhl, joint chief executive of the Vienna stock exchange, is not alone in thinking of the decade before 2008 as a “golden age”. The Vienna bourse was flying high – the benchmark ATX 20 index increased in value fourfold between 2002 and mid-2007 – and even the risk-averse Austrian public were buying shares. But the collapse of Lehman Brothers hit Vienna badly.

ISE Blames OPRA for NBBO Data Exclusion
Faye Kilburn – WatersTechnology
A technical issue at the Options Price Reporting Authority resulted in the International Securities Exchange’s main market and secondary options exchange Gemini not being included in the OPRA national best bid and offer (NBBO) feed for part of the morning on Wednesday, Oct.30.

ISE Statement on OPRA Market Data Issue
Press Release

ISE Shuffles Data Execs, Soule Exits
Max Bowie – WatersTechnology
The International Securities Exchange has reorganized the team of executives responsible for the exchange’s market data, resulting in an expanded role for business development officer Jeanine Hightower and the departure of former head of market data Jeff Soule.

BME Posts A Net Profit Of E33.1 Million In The Third Quarter, Up 6.8% Year On Year
Net Profit In The First Nine Months of 2013 Totalled E105.2 Million, Up 0.1% YoY

Deutsche Boerse CFO says no share buybacks in 2013 and H1 of ’14
Deutsche Boerse does not expect to buy back shares in 2013 and the first half of 2014, Chief Financial Officer Gregor Pottmeyer said on Wednesday.

Amendment To The MIAX Market Maker Transaction Fees Beginning November 1, 2013

MIAX Options Exchange Extension Of The Priority Customer Rebate Program To November 30, 2013

The NASDAQ Stock Market Surpasses 100 IPOs In 2013 Year-to-Date

SIX Swiss Exchange welcomes Cembra Money Bank

SIX Supports Banks In Promoting The e-bill Combined With A New Direct Debit Solution

Warsaw Stock Exchange Group In Q3 2013: New Services And Products Drive Growth Of Value Of The Company And The Polish Capital Market

Hedge Funds & Managed Futures

Funds of hedge funds recast dismal model
Sam Jones –
How many investments have yet to recover from 2008? Five years on, the idea that anyone should have failed to recover from the collapse of Lehman, and its attendant crises, is almost absurd, even given the volatile and difficult conditions in the years since. Spare a thought, then, for the fund of hedge fund managers of this world. And spare some tears for their clients.

Hedge funds position for Twitter gains
Arash Massoudi in New York –
Investor optimism about Twitter’s initial public offering is rising despite the messaging site’s efforts to contain excitement ahead of its New York listing next week.

Pimco hires Schroders equity chief Virginie Maisonneuve
Mike Foster – Financial News
Pimco, the biggest bond manager in the world, has hired Virginie Maisonneuve from Schroders to become its global head of equities.

CFTC Commitments Of Traders Reports Update

Banks & Brokers

U.S. regulators say banks that outsource work face risks
U.S. regulators on Wednesday warned banks to watch out for risky practices by outside companies to which they have outsourced customer service and other activities.

Banks Seek Bonus Alternatives
Margot Patrick and Richard Partington –
London’s top traders and bankers could soon see a big boost to their monthly pay as part of an effort by banks to hold onto their best performers despite a new European Union law limiting annual bonuses.

Cantor Fitzgerald Europe Continues Expansion With Structured Credit New Hire
Cantor Fitzgerald Europe, a leading global financial services firm, announced today that it is further expanding its European Structured Credit desk with the appointment of Sheil Aggarwal as Managing Director.

Revenue Slumps at BNP Paribas, but Profit Rises on Cost-Cutting
The French bank BNP Paribas reported better-than-expected earnings in the third quarter despite lower overall revenue and a nearly 11 percent decline in its investment-banking business resulting from a “lackluster” economic environment.

KCG Announces Third Quarter 2013 Results
KCG Holdings, Inc. today reported GAAP net income of $98.9 million, or $0.86 per diluted share, for the third quarter of 2013.

Federal Reserve Issues FOMC Statement

Clearing & Settlement

Cantor Fitzgerald Europe and LCH.Clearnet Limited announced today that they have launched Europe’s first centrally cleared OTC Contract for Difference in partnership with Commerzbank Corporate & Markets, ING and Citi. The initiative is in response to client demand for a reduction in risk to CFD providers, and is in line with regulators’ stated aim of increasing the proportion of cleared OTC contracts.

Tradeweb’s SEF Settles on Standardized Swaps to Phase In Market Transition
Ivy Schmerken – Wall Street & Technology
Yesterday, Tradeweb said its swap execution facility submitted a regulatory filing to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, spelling out which derivatives it intends to be made-available-to-trade on TW SEF LLC. Through the self-certification MAT process, Tradeweb indicated that that interest rate and credit default swaps will be made available to trade on its SEF, and that these derivatives represent about 80% of standardized swap volumes based on market data.

South Africa’s Financial Institutions Come Together To Meet Global Regulations Through Collateral Optimisation
Strate, Africa’s leading Central Securities Depository (CSD), and Clearstream, the International CSD (ICSD) and national CSD that is part of Deutsche Börse Group, today announced the launch of a centralised collateral management service for the South African financial market.

Collateral management survey 2013: collateral concerns grow
Michael Faulkner –
Insurance Risk’s second collateral management survey in conjunction with BNY Mellon finds more insurers are taking steps to prepare for new derivatives regulation, but concerns about collateral availability are mounting

Indexes & Products

Boost ETP Launches First Short And Leveraged ETPs Tracking FTSE MIB Indices

NASDAQ OMX Iceland Starts Trading The First Ever Bond ETF Issued By Landsbref
The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc. today announced that NASDAQ OMX Iceland has for the first time listed a fixed income exchange traded fund issued by the Icelandic fund management company Landsbref.


Calypso Technology Wins Asia Risk’s Technology Development Of The Year Award For 2013
Calypso Technology Inc., the leading integrated financial markets platform provider, today announced they have been awarded the Technology Development of the Year award at the Asia Risk Awards 2013, for their clearing solution enabling the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) to provide cross-margining between listed and OTC derivative products in Australia.

Thomson Reuters to slash 3,000 more jobs
Emily Steel in New York –
Thomson Reuters said on Tuesday that it would slash an additional 3,000 jobs this year, or about 5 per cent of its workforce, as the Canadian-controlled financial and professional information company continues its turnround.

TriOptima Launches UTI Pairing Functionality For OTC Derivative Trades To Meet EMIR Trade Reporting Obligations
TriOptima announces that it has launched a UTI (Unique Trade ID) pairing functionality to assist firms preparing for the European trade repository reporting effective February 2014.


SEC Rewards Whistleblower With $150,000 Payout
The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced an award of more than $150,000 to a whistleblower whose tips helped the agency stop a scheme that was defrauding investors.

Madoff trustee may pursue $8 billion claims vs. banks in feeder fund cases
A federal judge has made it easier for the trustee seeking money for Bernard Madoff’s victims to pursue more than $8 billion of claims against banks and other financial firms that received money from “feeder funds” that profited from the swindler’s massive Ponzi scheme.

Environmental & Energy

China’s Clean-Air Drive Likely to Take a Long Time
SAN FRANCISCO — Every so often, an extraordinary image makes the rounds on the Internet that shows an ominous gray cloud over the Beijing area, as seen from a satellite. Rather than a rain cloud, it is a shroud of pollution, the type that has caused fear and anger in China’s worst-hit cities.

**JK – NY Times has been pounding this story a lot lately, and rightfully so.

SEIA Applauds Introduction of Renewable Energy Standard Bill
Press release
Christopher Mansour, Vice President of Federal Affairs of the Solar Energy Industries Association, released the following statement today in support of new legislation by Senators Mark Udall (D-Colo¬.) and Tom Udall (D-N.M.) that would require utilities to generate 25 percent of their electricity from wind, solar and other renewable energy sources by 2025.

Truckers Tap Into Gas Boom
Mike Ramsey – Wall Street Journal
Operators of some of the largest U.S. truck fleets, including Lowe’s LOW -0.91% Cos., Procter & Gamble Co. PG -1.14% and United Parcel Service Inc., UPS -0.03% are accelerating a shift to natural gas fueled trucks, betting on new engine technology that promises to drop the cost of shifting from diesel fuel.

**JK – Good news for the folks at AMP Americas.


Exclusive: China securitization plan expanded to include foreign banks – sources
Chinese regulators have expanded a pilot plan allowing banks to package loans into tradable securities to include foreign banks, sources said.

99 Firms To Meet Investors In Thai bourse’s “Opportunity Days”

Speech By Song Liping, President & CEO Of Shenzhen Stock Exchange, At The 6th China-Wuhan Finance Expo

Frontier Markets

Qatar seeking to build $1 billion stake in BofA
Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund, one of the world’s most prolific investors, is building a $1 billion holding in Bank of America, seeking to benefit from the U.S. economic recovery, the Financial Times reported, citing sources close to the plans.

Money mirage exposes emerging markets
Gillian Tett –
If a shock was to hit Brazil, India, Indonesia – or any other emerging market country – tomorrow, how would investors react? Would asset values adjust smoothly, amid an explosion of trading flows? Or would markets instead freeze up, as liquidity evaporated?

Qatar Exchanges Becomes Full Member In World Federation Of Exchanges
Al-Mansoori: We Are Happy To Be Part Of An Organization That Represents Markets Worldwide That Are Fair, Transparent, And Well Regulated

NSEL crisis: EOW freezes accounts of Jignesh Shah, Joseph Massey
The economic offences wing (EOW) of the Mumbai police on Wednesday said it has frozen all personal accounts and lockers of Jignesh Shah, Joseph Massey and Anjani Sinha in connection with the Rs.5,574.35 crore payment crisis at the National Spot Exchange Ltd (NSEL)—a move that indicates the investigation is getting closer to Shah, who has tried to distance himself from events at the exchange.

Lahore Stock Exchange Consistent In Declaring Cash Dividend To Its Shareholders

John Lothian Newsletter

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Past JLN Newsletters

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