Music financing boom reverberates to markets

Jan 25, 2023

First Read

Hits & Takes
John Lothian & JLN Staff

Yesterday morning I checked the status of my investment accounts after the market opening as I often do and I was like, “WOW!” But then I saw there were problems with some of the opening auctions at the NYSE and the one big gain I had in AT&T, up $2.60 on the open, was not a reality. But sometimes markets do spike on the opening, which is why sometimes I have open orders at ridiculous prices to capture such moves should we get such spikes. But yesterday was not one of those days.

Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley, a sometime insurrection supporter, has introduced a bill that would bar lawmakers and their spouses from owning and trading stocks while in office. He has given it the name of the “PELOSI Act” in a shot at former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. PELOSI actually stands for “Preventing Elected Leaders from Owning Securities and Investments Act,” which is rather clever, especially for him. The story is from the New York Post.

Our friends at Exchange Analytics have new course offerings for 2023, including AML, cybersecurity, and swaps. For more information go HERE.

ISDA published the latest episode of the TheSwap podcast with guests Tracy Alloway of Bloomberg and Philip Stafford of the Financial Times giving their views on the news stories likely to dominate in 2023. Listen to the episode HERE.

One of the latest contrabands at the Mexico-U.S. border is slightly more fragile than typical bags of drugs and such. The contraband? Eggs, according to The New York Times.

The New York Times reports that 2022 was a deadly year for journalists, especially in Latin America. In fact, there were nearly as many journalists killed in Mexico alone as there were in Ukraine, the Times reported.

The New York Times also reports that the Long Island Rail Road begins service into Grand Central Station today, saving commuters as much as 40 minutes. The Metropolitan Transit Authority said the new service would increase train capacity to and from Manhattan by 50 percent and could see more than 160,000 passengers per day save as much as 40 minutes time. Maybe some people will come back to the office with this new service.

STAC starts today in earnest at the Hilton on South Michigan Avenue in Chicago. There is construction going on outside the south end of the hotel, so you can’t get in the entrance there, and the sidewalk on the southeast corner at Michigan is closed. Be aware.

I am headed to West Virginia tomorrow after JLN is published. I will be on the road until Tuesday.

Have a great day and stay safe and treat people the same way you want to be treated: with respect, equality and justice.~JJL

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Is Europe Sleepwalking Into Another War? The continent’s last major conflict in the Balkans never stopped smoldering, and a fragile peace is at a precipice.
Andrea Dudik and Misha Savic – Bloomberg
As Ukraine’s allies wrangle over what comes next to help the country fight Vladimir Putin’s forces, unfinished business elsewhere on NATO’s doorstep is also in need of some more attention. The Balkans have long been a byword for political and ethnic volatility, but things have worsened of late. Tensions have escalated since summer, after Kosovo told Serbs living in the country they had to adopt the same local ID cards and license plates as the ethnic Albanian majority. Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic even spent the final days of December trying to ease the standoff after residents in the north of Kosovo blocked off streets and confronted police.
/jlne.ws/3Dgk22C

****** Time to open our eyes to what is going on.~JJL

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Central Park Home of Late Hedge-Fund Titan Julian Robertson Jr. Lists for $30 Million; The roughly 6,500-square-foot co-op, which is located at Hampshire House, overlooks the park
Katherine Clarke – The Wall Street Journal
An apartment on Central Park long owned by the late hedge-fund founder Julian H. Robertson Jr. is on the market for $30 million. Mr. Robertson, founder of the hedge-fund giant Tiger Management, died in August 2022 at age 90. The Robertson family didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. Listing agent Joanne Douglas of Douglas Elliman declined to comment.
/jlne.ws/3Jg0HTi

****** For a cool $30 million this very nice co-op can be yours. Well worth the money.~JJL

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It’s Now Costlier to Hedge Turkey’s Lira Than the Russian Ruble; Six-month 25-delta risk reversals surge to four-month high; Investors brace for presidential, parliamentary elections
Tugce Ozsoy – Bloomberg
Currency investors are paying the highest premium in four months to hedge against further losses in Turkey’s lira as they brace for national elections. The spread on six-month options to sell the lira for the US dollar over those to buy the Turkish currency, known as the 25 delta risk reversals, has widened to 13 percentage points this week. That’s the biggest hedging premium among major emerging-market currencies, a dubious title held previously by the Russian ruble.
/jlne.ws/3R4bkds

****** Is it time for me to unload my Turkish Lira?~JJL

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Janet Yellen Dismisses Minting $1 Trillion Coin to Avoid Default
Andrew Duehren – WSJ
Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said the Federal Reserve likely wouldn’t accept a $1 trillion platinum coin if the Biden administration tried to mint one to avoid breaching the debt limit, dismissing an idea that has been floated to circumvent Congress on the issue. Some Biden administration officials and Democrats on Capitol Hill have discussed the possibility that the Treasury could use an obscure law authorizing platinum coins in the event of a potential default. Under the proposed scheme, the Treasury would mint a $1 trillion coin and deposit it at the Fed, and then draw the money to pay the country’s bills.
/jlne.ws/3ZRXf74

****** Janet Yellen knows a stupid idea when she sees one. This is one that does not take political courage, it takes stupidity. She does not want to be that person.~JJL

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Tuesday’s Top Three
Our top story Tuesday was Inside Ken Griffin’s rise to one of Wall Street’s most powerful people, and why politics could be next, from Insider. Second was R.J. O’Brien’s LinkedIn post announcing that the Commodity Markets Council honored Rich Feltes with a Lifetime Achievement Award this Sunday. Feltes is VP Research at RJO. And third was RJO’s Congratulations to the Fixed Income Group on its 25th anniversary of doing business at R.J. O’Brien! on LinkedIn.

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MarketsWiki Stats
27,157 pages; 242,477 edits
MarketsWiki Statistics

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Lead Stories

Music financing boom reverberates to markets; Start-up is seeking to launch futures to let streaming companies and rights owners manage risks
Philip Stafford – Financial Times
Investors may soon be able to speculate on which songs are heading to the top of the streaming charts under plans being developed by a US start-up to launch a futures market linked to music revenues. Chicago-based Clouty has created a tradeable index of global streaming sales, and is looking at an exchange-traded fund that would draw in retail investors. It is also in early discussions with US exchanges about launching futures linked to individual genres, artists and songs, according to two people with knowledge of the discussions.
/jlne.ws/3R2SiEt

Glitch at NYSE briefly halts trading in dozens of blue-chip stocks; Companies including ExxonMobil and McDonald’s among ‘subset’ affected by problems
Nicholas Megaw – Financial Times
The New York Stock Exchange on Tuesday said it would cancel trades in some stocks after problems with its opening auction caused sharp swings in blue-chip names such as ExxonMobil and McDonald’s. The US Securities and Exchange Commission said it was reviewing the problem after NYSE said a “system issue” affected the open of about 250 stocks.
/jlne.ws/3WDeztu

How a prestigious Wall Street law firm got caught up in FTX’s chaos; Sullivan & Cromwell’s work before and after crypto exchange’s bankruptcy raised uncomfortable questions about conflicts in court
Sujeet Indap and Josh Oliver – Financial Times
Since Algernon Sydney Sullivan and William Nelson Cromwell opened their eponymous law firm in 1879, Sullivan & Cromwell has become a go-to practice for the most important companies in the world, from General Electric to Goldman Sachs. In 2021, the white-shoe firm began working with an upstart entrepreneur who was both figuratively and literally far from its Wall Street base, but one who some believed could be the next global financial titan. FTX, headquartered in the Bahamas, was still a very young company, but its founder, Sam Bankman-Fried, was emerging as the respectable if eccentric face of the rising cryptocurrency industry.
/jlne.ws/3YehWZt

NYSE claims technical glitch for early trading issues; The US market opened in chaos yesterday, as what NYSE is calling a “system issue” caused widespread confusion and a series of halted trades.
Laurie McAughtry – The Trade
The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) saw a volatile opening to the market on Tuesday as what appeared to be a floor-wide issue – with limit up/limit down (LULD) halts triggered in error – caused the opening auctions of an estimated 84 symbols to be cancelled. The issue was first acknowledged by the NYSE (which is owned by ICE) at 10.21 ET, at which time the exchange confirmed that it was “investigating reported issues with the opening auction”.
/jlne.ws/405PRoD

Crypto Is Worth Fixing. Regulators Should Get Moving; A more proactive approach could maximize the benefits of a technology that still has potential.
Bill Dudley – Bloomberg
The once-burgeoning realm of crypto and decentralized finance keeps imploding, presenting policy makers with a quandary: Should they just let it burn, or step in to address its now-obvious flaws? I’m with the second group. To maintain their credibility, and to derive the greatest benefit from blockchain technology, regulators should intervene and crack down on scams, protect investors and ensure market integrity.
/jlne.ws/3XIW3la

A Green Methanol Pioneer Finally Has a Market; The accelerating climate crisis and increased concerns about energy security have boosted demand for an Icelandic company’s environmentally friendly fuel.
Danielle Bochove – Bloomberg
Along a narrow winding road on a windswept stretch of Iceland’s southern Reykjanes Peninsula, a collection of electrolyzers, compressors and pipes offers a turnkey solution to help decarbonize the shipping industry. In 2006, the founders of Carbon Recycling International Ltd. saw an opportunity to use Iceland’s abundant geothermal power, fed by the underground rivers of magma that heat the Arctic nation’s groundwater, to create “electrified” methanol, a green alternative to fossil fuel. They located the George Olah Renewable Methanol plant-named for the late Nobel laureate-half a kilometer (0.31 miles) from the Svartsengi geothermal power station, whose warm runoff waters feed the famed Blue Lagoon tourist attraction.
/jlne.ws/3DeUfrK

Climate Change May Usher in a New Era of Trade Wars; Countries are pursuing new solutions to try to mitigate climate change. More trade fights are likely to come hand in hand.
Ana Swanson – The New York Times
Efforts to mitigate climate change are prompting countries across the world to embrace dramatically different policies toward industry and trade, bringing governments into conflict. These new clashes over climate policy are straining international alliances and the global trading system, hinting at a future in which policies aimed at staving off environmental catastrophe could also result in more frequent cross-border trade wars.
/jlne.ws/3WHApMt

Sen. Josh Hawley introduces ‘PELOSI Act’ to ban lawmakers from trading stocks
Ariel Zilber – NY Post
Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) wants to bar lawmakers and their spouses from owning and trading stocks while in office by proposing the ‘PELOSI Act.’ The bill, whose title is “Preventing Elected Leaders from Owning Securities and Investments (PELOSI) Act,” takes a dig at its namesake, former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). “For too long, politicians in Washington have taken advantage of the economic system they write the rules for, turning profits for themselves at the expense of the American people,” Hawley said.
/jlne.ws/3wwAKHw

The Trillion-Dollar Coin Might Be the Least Bad Option; Why the legal scholar Rohan Grey thinks the U.S. Mint can defuse the debt-ceiling standoff
Annie Lowrey – The Atlantic
Later this year, for no good reason at all, the United States might enter a chaotic period of financial default. Once again, the country has hit its statutory debt limit, because Congress continues to spend more than the government receives in tax revenue. The Treasury has no more legal authority to issue new debt and is currently using a series of “extraordinary measures” to keep the government’s bills paid. Those extraordinary measures will last for only six months or so. At that point, either Congress will raise the debt ceiling or the full faith and credit of the country will be at risk.
/jlne.ws/3WGUnXH

South America’s Make-Believe Money Is Either Dangerous or Irrelevant; Ideologically driven plans by Argentina and Brazil for a common currency fly in the face of history and economic and political reality.
Eduardo Porter – Bloomberg
When the presidents of Brazil and Argentina announced at a regional summit in Buenos Aires that they would start planning for a common currency, you could almost hear the chortling from lower Manhattan to the Washington headquarters of the International Monetary Fund. “It’s not far from El Salvador adopting Bitcoin,” said Kenneth Rogoff, who became chief economist at the IMF just in time to witness the macro-devaluation of the Argentine peso in 2001. Olivier Blanchard, who held the post a few years later, went simply for “insane.”
/jlne.ws/3wsVVtP

‘Scared the Hell Out of Me’: NYSE’s Wild Start Rattles Traders
Bailey Lipschultz, Jessica Menton and Yiqin Shen – Bloomberg
A chaotic open for some stocks listed on the New York Stock Exchange sent chills across Wall Street as dozens of the largest companies in the US seemed to erase billions of dollars in market value for no apparent reason, leaving some investors frustrated and others clamoring for an explanation. Trading was halted for dozens of big-cap stocks within the first 30 seconds of Tuesday’s session after they appeared to post wild swings that puzzled investors. The NYSE’s operations were back to normal less than 20 minutes later.
/jlne.ws/3XMLcpQ

Off-exchange traded funds; The lit liquidity erosion
Robin Wigglesworth – Financial Times
The central premise of ETFs is that they are funds that trade on an exchange. It’s right there in the name: exchange traded funds. Except, it seems to be becoming increasingly less true. Here is an intriguing chart showing how off-exchange trading in US ETFs jumped to a new record in 2022, from Paul Rowady of Alphacution, a market structure research house.
/jlne.ws/3kxPB1o

Crypto miners seek financial lifeline with intense battle for bitcoins; Rising cryptocurrency price boosts hopes of an upturn in industry fortunes
Martha Muir – Financial Times
Cryptocurrency miners are turning their machines back on as the rallying price of bitcoin offers a vital lifeline to their cash-strapped businesses. The value of the token has emerged from the doldrums to soar by more than a quarter this year against the dollar, incentivising the owners of huge warehouses of servers for mining to accelerate their use in the battle to secure more bitcoins. The average hashrate, or the computing power directed towards mining bitcoin, rose to a record 280 exahash – or quintillion – operations per second on January 20, according to data from Hashrate Index, a mining information service.
/jlne.ws/3D9mx71

UK competition watchdog to ease rules on climate change action; Regulator to broaden exemption for companies collaborating on initiatives that will limit global warming
Kate Beioley and Camilla Hodgson – Financial Times
The UK competition regulator will ease the antitrust rules on climate change initiatives to tackle business concerns that collaboration on climate action could expose them to claims of collusion. The move comes after a wide range of groups, led by the financial sector alliance known as Gfanz, spearheaded by former Bank of England governor Mark Carney, said fears of antitrust enforcement action prevented them from taking a tougher stance on climate action.
/jlne.ws/3H7Uztr

Top US securities regulator quashed Circle’s efforts to list through Spac; Banking veteran Bob Diamond sought to bring stablecoin operator to US stock market using blank-cheque company
Laura Noonan and Scott Chipolina – Financial Times
Stablecoin operator Circle has blamed the US securities regulator for the failure of its $9bn plans to go public through a blank-cheque company. The group, which jettisoned listing plans in December, told the Financial Times that the deal was derailed not because of the turbulence in the crypto markets last year, but because the Securities & Exchange Commission had not signed off on what would have been one of the world’s biggest deals involving a Spac.
/jlne.ws/3Heak2e

Bankrupt crypto lender BlockFi accidentally reveals it had over $1.2 billion in assets tied up with FTX
Zahra Tayeb – Business Insider
Bankrupt crypto lender BlockFi accidentally revealed it had over $1.2 billion in assets tied to FTX and its sister trading arm Alameda Research, according to CNBC. The redacted sections include “trade secret[s] or confidential research, development, or commercial information,” one of the filings show.
/jlne.ws/3WRCndD

Anthony Scaramucci says he got only $400,000 back on his $10 million investment in FTX’s token
Ryan Hogg – Business Insider
Anthony Scaramucci says he only got $400,000 back on a $10 million investment in FTX’s key coin, but says that won’t put him off crypto in the future. Speaking in an interview with Bloomberg, the investor said he had put millions into Sam Bankman-Fried’s FTT token through his fund SkyBridge Capital, but was “burned” when the coin collapsed along with the FTX crypto exchange in November.
/jlne.ws/3R5qQG8

A US research firm has accused Adani of pulling “the largest con in corporate history”
Mimansa Verma – Quartz
A US-based financial forensic firm has alleged that India’s Adani Group, led by the world’s third-richest person Gautam Adani, is involved in a massive and “brazen stock manipulation” and “accounting fraud scheme.” In a report published yesterday (Jan. 24), the New York-based short seller said the $218 billion conglomerate was “pulling the largest con in corporate history.”
/jlne.ws/3HaknVV

Ukraine Invasion

US finalizing plans to send approximately 30 Abrams tanks to Ukraine, two US officials say
Natasha Bertrand and Oren Liebermann – CNN
The US is finalizing plans to send approximately 30 Abrams tanks to Ukraine, two US officials familiar with the deliberations told CNN. The Biden administration announcement to send the US-made tanks could come as early as this week, CNN reported earlier Tuesday. The timing around the actual delivery of the tanks is still unclear and it normally takes several months to train troops to use the tanks effectively, officials said.
/jlne.ws/3HwPCvS

Germany clears way for scores of tanks for Ukraine, U.S. also poised
Andreas Rinke and Tom Balmforth – Reuters
Germany cleared the way on Wednesday for Europe to send scores of battle tanks to Ukraine, and Washington was poised make a similar announcement – moves hailed by Kyiv as a potential turning point in the war and condemned by Moscow as escalation.
/jlne.ws/3DdML8n

The case for sending western tanks to Ukraine; Shift in Berlin’s stance on sending German Leopards is a breakthrough for Kyiv
The editorial board – Financial Times
The approaching spring brings a potential turning point in the conflict in Ukraine. Kyiv is impatient to utilise the advantage that western-supplied arms have helped it to gain in the artillery war, and punch through to retake Russian-occupied territories. For this it needs western-made advanced main battle tanks. Such weapons could also be vital in repelling a new offensive Moscow is preparing. Though Germany’s Leopard 2 tanks are best suited to the task, chancellor Olaf Scholz has been reluctant to supply them unless the US sends tanks too. His belated concession that Germany will send tanks – apparently in concert with the US – is an important boost for Kyiv’s war effort.
/jlne.ws/3XDOKee

Scholz gives go-ahead to supply Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine; Ukrainians rejoice at decision while Russia’s ambassador to Germany describes it as ‘extremely dangerous’
Guy Chazan, Christopher Miller and Max Seddon – Financial Times
Germany is to supply 14 Leopard 2 tanks to Kyiv, a significant ramping up of western military aid that was condemned by Russia and prompted cheers throughout Ukraine. Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced the move at a cabinet meeting on Wednesday, describing it as the result of “intensive consultations that have taken place between Germany and its closest European and international partners”.
/jlne.ws/3R766Oi

Europe’s Ban on Russia Oil Products Will Be More Disruptive; A ready market for Moscow’s refined products simply doesn’t exist outside the EU like it does for crude.
Julian Lee – Bloomberg
The European Union is about to ban imports of refined oil products from Russia. That could be much more disruptive than its earlier halt to crude purchases. Starting Feb. 5, imports of diesel, gasoline and other products used for further processing – including fuel oil and vacuum gasoil – cannot be imported from Russia into EU countries. The US and UK already have their own bans in place.
/jlne.ws/3WwpjKk

Ukraine Pushes Back Russian Forces in East; Defense experts say West’s hesitation has constrained Kyiv’s ability to defend against the Russian offensive in Bakhmut
Jared Malsin – The Wall Street Journal
Ukrainian forces repelled Russian attempts to advance in the country’s east, the country’s military said, while air-raid sirens across the country raised fears of possible Russian missile attacks.
/jlne.ws/3RcI9oU

Kremlin says U.S.-supplied tanks will ‘burn’ in Ukraine
Reuters
The Kremlin said on Wednesday that any Abrams battle tanks supplied to Ukraine by the United States would “burn”, dismissing the expected delivery as an expensive folly. U.S. officials told Reuters on Tuesday that Washington was poised to send dozens of its M1 Abrams battle tanks to Ukraine, reversing its previous position. The report comes after Germany looked set to send its Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine after initially resisting the request.
/jlne.ws/3j1my60

Russia says Germany escalates conflict and spurns ‘historical responsibility’ by sending tanks to Kyiv
Reuters
The Russian embassy in Germany said on Wednesday that Berlin’s decision to approve the delivery of Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine meant it was abandoning its “historical responsibility to Russia” arising from Nazi crimes in World War Two.
/jlne.ws/3kGDyix

Exchanges, OTC and Clearing

NYSE announces move to prevent another glitch at the open
Steve Goldstein – MarketWatch
The New York Stock Exchange on Tuesday said a “system issue” led to a glitch at the open, causing dozens of trading halts and wild price swings. It has now identified the culprit, something called a “Sell Short Restriction.” It refers to a relatively recent rule, from 2010 that’s called the alternative uptick rule, that says that stocks can’t be shorted if they have dropped 10% or more in one day. “On January 24, 2023, a Sell Short Restriction (SSR) state was erroneously triggered in a subset of NYSE listed symbols.” It says the SSR on 81 securities — including big names like McDonald’s, Exxon Mobil and Walmart — will be deactivated prior to the NYSE opening.
/jlne.ws/404tbVK

NYSE Investigates Technical Issue That Caused Wild Market Open
Matt Turner and Katherine Doherty – Bloomberg
The New York Stock Exchange is probing what caused wild price swings and trading halts when the market opened on Tuesday as shares for dozens of the biggest US companies suddenly plunged or spiked. A “technical issue” that the exchange didn’t immediately identify resulted in some gyrations that spanned almost 25 percentage points between the high and low in a matter of minutes. Banks, retailers and industrial companies were among those affected, including Wells Fargo & Co., McDonald’s Corp., Walmart Inc. and Morgan Stanley.
/jlne.ws/3HuahjS

Dozens of NYSE Stocks Halted In Opening Minutes After Wild Price Swings
Alexander Osipovich – The Wall Street Journal
Trading was temporarily halted in dozens of stocks listed on the New York Stock Exchange shortly after the market opened today, after some stocks showed wild price swings. “The exchange is investigating reported issues with the opening auction. All NYSE systems are currently operational,” NYSE wrote in a notice. NYSE’s opening auction is the process that takes place at 9:30 a.m. ET each day and results in the official opening price for stocks listed on the exchange.
/jlne.ws/3Hu0hal

NYSE Says Certain Trades to Be Canceled After Glitch at Open
Katherine Doherty and Jessica Menton – Bloomberg
The New York Stock Exchange said some trades will be declared “null and void” after a glitch caused hundreds of securities to commence trading on Tuesday without an opening auction price. The exchange said transactions in a swath of stocks will be reviewed as “clearly erroneous” under NYSE rules. That applies to trades in certain securities that did not conduct an opening auction, that occurred after the 9:30 a.m. bell but before certain thresholds were set that normally limit haywire swings, and that were executed too far from the reference price.
/jlne.ws/3R1PfMQ

SIX Digital Exchange Approved for Euro Denominated Bonds
MarketsMedia
SIX Digital Exchange (SDX) has received regulatory clearance by FINMA to support the issuance, trading and settlement of bonds denominated in EUR. The service will be live on 1st of February 2023 for all members of SDX. Issuers will be able to make use of this service to issue EUR denominated bonds under Swiss law, opening up new possibilities for market participants in the digital asset space.
/jlne.ws/3j59ixm

A Tale of Two Markets: Why the Future Looks Different for Hogs and Cattle
Emily Balsamo – Open Markets
Beef supply could tighten in the coming year due to falling domestic production and lower carcass weights, while pork production is expected to rise in 2023. Hog markets are typically more sensitive to international politics and trade flow disruption since exports comprise a greater share of U.S. pork production than in beef. The differing supply-demand dynamics of the domestic pork and beef markets are reflected in the divergent forward curves of CME Lean Hog and Live Cattle futures. The USDA predicts tighter beef stocks in 2023, while production of hogs and pork is expected to rise next year. Other differing fundamentals influence the unique volatilities and export profiles of the two product sectors.
/jlne.ws/3R7EE2I

Confirmation of Appointment of Group General Counsel And Company Secretary
ASX Limited
ASX Limited (ASX) advises that Johanna O’Rourke has been confirmed in the role of Group General Counsel & Company Secretary of ASX Limited. Ms O’Rourke has been acting in the role since October 2022 and has now been appointed to the role in a permanent capacity, effective 25 January 2023.
/jlne.ws/351gPmZ

BME’s Pre-Market Environment reaches 25 companies after welcoming two new ones; The coffee shop company Vanadi Coffee and the SME financial services company Workcapital join BME’s training program
BME
BME’s Pre-Market Environment (EpM), BME’s acceleration program in the process of incorporating companies to the financial markets, grows with the incorporation today of the Valencian Community companies Vanadi Coffee and Workcapital. With them, there are now 25 companies that are part of this program.
/jlne.ws/3J99UN4

CME Group Aluminum: Looking back at 2022
CME Group
Last year proved to be an important phase of growth for Aluminum futures and Aluminum (ALI) product offerings. Spurred by the globalization of the Aluminum warehousing network in 2018, our Aluminum futures and options are emerging as a viable hedging alternative to traditional global aluminum markets.
/jlne.ws/3DhSUAn

Launch of “Processing Service for Stock Order Data” for Provision of Processed FLEX Full Data
JPX
Mitsubishi UFJ Trust Investment Technology Institute Co., Ltd. and JPX Market Innovation & Research, Inc. (JPXI) will launch the “Processing Service for Stock Order Data,” which provides FLEX Full data which is historical information of stock trading orders in the markets of Tokyo Stock Exchange, Inc. and is provided by JPXI in a format that facilitates data analysis. Please refer to the following document for the details.
/jlne.ws/3Jdmlr0

Regular Constituents Change in S&P/KRX ESG Dividend Opportunities index
KRX
The Constituents of S&P/KRX ESG Dividend Opportunities index will be changed. Effective date Feb 1, 2023 (Wed)
/jlne.ws/400NPGs

Nasdaq Reports Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2022 Results; Delivers Strong Solutions Businesses Revenue Growth in 2022
Nasdaq
Nasdaq, Inc. (Nasdaq: NDAQ) today reported financial results for the fourth quarter and year 2022.2022 net revenues were $3,582 million, an increase of 5% over 2021. Solutions businesses2 revenues increased 9%, including 10% organic growth and 1% from the net impact of an acquisition, partially offset by a negative 2% FX impact. Trading Services net revenues decreased 2%, including a negative 3% FX impact, partially offset by 1% organic growth.
/jlne.ws/3iZP2NJ

Fintech

Liquidnet partners with BondAuction to broaden access to book building efficiencies; The partnership will allow users to place bids via Liquidnet onto BondAuction’s platform directly from its OMS and receive allotments back.
Wesley Bray – The Trade
Liquidnet has partnered with auction platform for the primary debt capital markets, BondAuction, to provide mutual clients with access to the latter’s platform through Liquidnet’s order management system (OMS) offering. The new partnership will allow users of Liquidnet Primary Markets’ established OMS connectivity to place bids via Liquidnet onto BondAuction’s platform directly from their OMS and receive allotments back.
/jlne.ws/3DeURxH

We tried to run a social media site and it was awful; Extinction looms for FTAV’s Mastodon presence
Bryce Elder – Financial Times
A few months ago, FT Alphaville thought it might be fun to host a Mastodon server. Boy, were we wrong! It is therefore with relief and regret that we announce the shutdown of Alphaville.club, this blog’s completely unofficial home on the Fediverse. Our reasons are listed below in full but, to summarise, Mastodon has proved more hassle than its worth.
/jlne.ws/3XBWj5j

Generative AI: how will the new era of machine learning affect you? Systems like ChatGPT can produce content to order, threatening not just jobs but a surge of misinformation
Richard Waters – Financial Times
Just over 10 years ago, three artificial intelligence researchers achieved a breakthrough that changed the field forever. The “AlexNet” system, trained on 1.2mn images taken from around the web, recognised objects as different as a container ship and a leopard with far greater accuracy than computers had managed before.
/jlne.ws/3Y0Icq5

Portland Joins Northern Virginia to Lead Data Center Markets; Singapore and Hong Kong are following the joint top spot; Both Asian cities have strong ecosystems and connectivity
Kevin Varley – Bloomberg
Northern Virginia no longer stands alone as the world’s most desirable data center location, with Portland sharing the top spot for the first time this year. Portland jumped nine spots in a world ranking, tied with Northern Virginia – the top performer in the three previous versions for the first time, according to a 2023 annual report by global real estate firm Cushman & Wakefield. Singapore and Hong Kong were ranked third and fourth, the only Asian Pacific markets making into the top 10 overall rankings.
/jlne.ws/3XYOMgr

Microsoft Resolves Networking Issues That Caused Cloud Outages
Olivia Solon – Bloomberg
Microsoft Corp. has resolved widespread problems with its online services, including Outlook and Teams, that it attributed to networking issues. Customers reported difficulties across multiple regions starting at 7:05 a.m. in London in accessing Microsoft 365 services, including email and videoconferencing tools, the company said in a statement. SharePoint Online, OneDrive for Business and Microsoft Graph were also affected.
/jlne.ws/3XYPcn1

Microsoft cloud outage hits users around the world
Akriti Sharma – Reuters
Microsoft Corp on Wednesday said it had recovered all of its cloud services after a networking outage took down its cloud platform Azure along with services such as Teams and Outlook used by millions around the globe.
/jlne.ws/3DeV5EU

Why are businesses beginning to adopt crypto payment gateways?
Coin Rivet
According to Checkout.com’s report, 77% of merchants who choose to accept crypto as a payment medium observe an increase in cross-border sales. It’s no surprise therefore that an estimated quarter of all online businesses are looking to offer crypto payment methods by 2025 – a number that will only rise as the education gap decreases.
/jlne.ws/3Jad4Ad

Cybersecurity

Cole-Frieman & Mallon Launches First Cybersecurity Law Practice for Asset Managers With Eye to SEC’s Proposed Rules
CF&M
We are delighted to announce that John Araneo has returned to the firm, to launch and lead a new Cybersecurity Law practice. This practice will focus on the emerging Cybersecurity laws, regulations and other requirements imposed specifically upon investment managers. The decision to launch the Cybersecurity Law practice was driven by both the imminent changes in the Cybersecurity regulatory landscape and the ODD community’s continued focus on Cybersecurity risk management for investment management firms.
/jlne.ws/3XTm6Wq

‘League of Legends’ Source Code Stolen in Riot Games Cyberattack; Code for League of Legends among data exfiltrated in hack; Company received ransom note. ‘Needless to say, we won’t pay’
Cecilia D’Anastasio – Bloomberg
Riot Games Inc., maker of hit games Valorant and League of Legends, said its development environment was compromised last week following a social engineering attack. Source code for League of Legends, Teamfight Tactics and a legacy anti-cheat platform were stolen as part of the incident, the company Tuesday said on its Twitter page.
/jlne.ws/3R7iKwT

TikTok Bans at Major Colleges Aren’t Going Over Well With Students
Alex Barinka – Bloomberg
A new ban on TikTok at many state colleges around the US offers a snippet of what the Biden administration would be in for if it instituted a nationwide blackout: lots of angry young people. More than 25 states have placed restrictions on the use of TikTok on state-owned equipment in recent weeks, and those restrictions have extended in some cases to public schools. Over a dozen major higher-education systems, including Auburn University, the University of Georgia and Oklahoma State University, recently banned TikTok in some form – from school-owned devices, the campus networks or both.
/jlne.ws/3XFQa8i

Cryptocurrencies

Cryptoverse: Bitcoin investors take control
Lisa Pauline Mattackal and Medha Singh – Reuters
Paranoid? The domino downfall of FTX and other crypto custodians is enough to make the most trusting investor grab their bitcoin and shove it under the mattress. Indeed, holders big and small are taking “self-custody” of their funds, moving them from crypto exchanges and trading platforms to personal digital wallets. In a sign of this shift among retail investors, the number of bitcoin held in smaller wallets – those with under 10 bitcoin – rose to 3.35 million as of Jan. 11, up 23% from the 2.72 million held a year ago, according to data from CoinMetrics.
/jlne.ws/3HrV3Mq

How Japan handles crypto exchanges differently
Brady Dale – Axios
Japan’s crypto exchanges have different rules than exchanges in other parts of the world. FTX Japan, by all reports, didn’t come up short on customer funds, and that could be attributed to the more stringent laws in place for how exchanges in Japan operate. In 2018, Japanese crypto exchange Coincheck had hundreds of millions of dollars worth of the NEM cryptocurrency stolen.
/jlne.ws/3R1OovC

Solana shakes off its death rattle with a 140% jump in value since the start of the year
Marco Quiroz-Gutierrez
After crypto pundits predicted that Solana’s days were numbered due to its close ties with FTX’s Sam Bankman-Fried, the cryptocurrency has made a surprising comeback since the start of the new year. After crypto pundits predicted that Solana’s days were numbered due to its close ties with FTX’s Sam Bankman-Fried, the cryptocurrency has made a surprising comeback since the start of the new year.
/jlne.ws/3XWXc8k

Celsius May Issue a Bankruptcy Crypto Token to Pay Creditors; Celsius working on proposal to leave bankruptcy as new company; Attorney says liquidating would raise less than reorganizing
Steven Church – Bloomberg
Celsius Network LLC is considering issuing a new digital-asset token to repay creditors as part of a proposal to reorganize and exit bankruptcy as a regulated crypto platform, the company said in court Tuesday. Reorganizing Celsius into a publicly-traded company that is properly licensed would bring in more money for creditors than selling hard-to-liquidate assets at today’s depressed prices, company attorney Ross M. Kwasteniet said during a video-court hearing.
/jlne.ws/3kwcKkQ

Silvergate had close ties to Sam Bankman-Fried’s FTX and Alameda. The crypto bank was also reportedly a favorite of other troubled clients including an Australian Ponzi criminal
Morgan Chittum – Business Insider
Silvergate was once the go-to bank for the biggest names in crypto. Now, the industry favorite is under fire for ties to embattled crypto players and its role in the downfall of FTX. The publicly traded bank has done business with more than a dozen crypto firms that have shut down, been fined, or come under investigation, according to an Intelligencer report on Tuesday.
/jlne.ws/3iXJinD

Crypto Chaos Snags Wall Street Lender of Next-to-Last Resort
Max Reyes, Austin Weinstein, Allyson Versprille and Katanga Johnson – Bloomberg
A Depression-era backstop that Wall Street banks use for short-term funding is the latest corner of traditional finance to be ensnared by upheaval in the crypto industry. For decades, the Federal Home Loan Bank System has been a preferred option for lenders in need of cash. But recent revelations that some of the money went to crypto-friendly banks after the collapse of digital-asset exchange FTX is stoking concerns of mission creep, with funds going far afield from the home loans that the program was originally designed to boost.
/jlne.ws/3WE7J7f

Investment Manager Wilshire Taps Crypto Trading Firm FalconX for Digital Assets Indexes
Jamie Crawley – CoinDesk
Wilshire, a private investment management firm, tapped crypto trading firm FalconX to provide digital asset indexes for its institutional clients. The two firms will work together on a set of single-coin, multicoin and thematic indexes for institutional investors with access to the crypto derivatives market, Wilshire said Tuesday.
/jlne.ws/3Ht2gMg

Australian Crypto Exchange Digital Surge to Pay Back Creditors After Losing $33M on FTX
Amitoj Singh – CoinDesk
Troubled Australian cryptocurrency exchange Digital Surge has been bailed out after creditors approved a long-term recovery plan, the company said in a statement shared with CoinDesk. The Brisbane-based exchange is said to have held $33 million on FTX, the cryptocurrency exchange that collapsed in November, according to a report in The Guardian.
/jlne.ws/3jb6XAR

Labor Strife Comes to the Metaverse; Assassin’s Creed developer Ubisoft offered pep talks on work ethic. That pushed all the wrong buttons.
Lionel Laurent – Bloomberg
Video games are increasingly enmeshed in the business cycle of Big Tech. After the pandemic boom, profit warnings are piling up, from Assassin’s Creed developer Ubisoft Entertainment SA to Frontier Developments Plc, and industry layoffs are mounting.
/jlne.ws/3WDfaeI

Politics

‘Definition of monopoly’: Ticketmaster ripped in Congress after Taylor Swift fiasco
Alexandra Canal – Yahoo Finance
Congress is saying “I Knew You Were Trouble” to Live Nation Entertainment (LYV). Capitol Hill ramped up its fight against the parent company of Ticketmaster during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Tuesday following November’s fiasco with Taylor Swift concert tickets.
/jlne.ws/3iXqh4N

This site bet big on political gambling. Regulators want it shut down.; Politics junkies have made and lost millions placing bets with PredictIt. But soon all bets may be off.
Ben Terris – The Washington Post
In 2016, Jason Pipkin was working in a biology lab at Brandeis University, authoring papers with titles such as “Mapping the mind of a fly,” when he first heard of PredictIt. It is a website where you could place bets and win money on political outcomes. Consequential things, such as who would win an election or whether a bill might pass, and trivial things, like how many times Donald Trump would say the words “Crooked Hillary” at a debate.
/jlne.ws/3XTdZJp

UK Minister Commits to Greater Crypto Industry Engagement as New Regulation Looms
Jack Schickler – CoinDesk
U.K.’s financial services minister Andrew Griffith on Wednesday pledged a greater engagement with the crypto sector, as he plans new post-Brexit laws. Last April Rishi Sunak – then finance minister, now prime minister – said he wanted to make the country a crypto hub, but a consultation on how to govern the financial technology is now overdue. “My undertaking is to have six roundtables with the sector with a variety of sector participants during 2023,” Griffith, from Sunak’s Conservative Party, told lawmakers at Wednesday’s parliamentary debate on regulating crypto.
/jlne.ws/3H1vrVc

Netherlands opposes new EU money to counter US green subsidies; Premier Mark Rutte says bloc still has ample funding to help with transition
Sam Fleming – Financial Times
The Dutch prime minister said he will oppose any fresh EU money being raised to fund Europe’s response to Joe Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), arguing the union already has ample cash to support its green transition.
/jlne.ws/3kBSEWt

China Is Trying to Play Nice, and It’s a Problem for the US; Years of Beijing’s bullying neighbors and “wolf warrior” diplomacy helped Washington forge security and trade alliances, but Xi Jinping seems to be wising up.
Hal Brands – Bloomberg
Having incompetent enemies is a blessing. For three years, Chinese President Xi Jinping has showered blessings upon the US. A self-isolated, belligerent and increasingly repressive China has been its own worst enemy, playing into America’s efforts to check Chinese power. Now, though, Beijing is attempting an overdue course correction, and Xi’s new approach could expose America’s diplomatic weaknesses.
/jlne.ws/3XRZMwg

Regulation

UK Charges Ex-Janus Analyst With Insider Dealing, Laundering; FCA charges 5 defendants with £1.5 million conspiracy; Korfuzi, other individuals indicated plan to plead not guilty
Jonathan Browning – Bloomberg
An ex-analyst at asset manager Janus Henderson Group Plc and four other individuals were charged with a £1.5 million ($1.8 million) conspiracy to commit insider dealing and money laundering by UK financial prosecutors. The Financial Conduct Authority said Redinel Korfuzi, 35, accessed confidential inside information in his while working at Janus Henderson to enable “timely and profitable” trading in 49 companies. Korfuzi and the other individuals all indicated that they plan to plead not guilty, the FCA said Wednesday.
/jlne.ws/3DfVUgB

Elon Musk testifies that multiple financing avenues made ‘funding secured’ Tesla tweet true
Alexis Keenan – Yahoo Finance
During a third day on the witness stand, Tesla (TSLA) CEO Elon Musk stuck to his position that he was honest when he tweeted in 2018 that he had secured funding to take the electric-vehicle company private.
/jlne.ws/3HwTAoe

Justice Department sues Google to break up its advertising empire
Alexis Keenan and Daniel Howley – Yahoo Finance
The U.S. Department of Justice and eight states filed an antitrust lawsuit against Google (GOOG, GOOGL) on Tuesday, seeking the breakup of the company’s online ad business. This latest action comes more than two years after the agency and a group of state attorneys general joined in another suit alleging Google’s search and search advertising businesses violate U.S. antitrust laws.
/jlne.ws/3JwhDoL

Grayscale would appeal lawsuit against SEC if court rejects case, CEO says
Hannah Lang – Reuters
Crypto asset manager Grayscale Investments is gearing up for a prolonged legal fight with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to create a spot bitcoin exchange-traded fund, the company’s chief executive officer said. As the company awaits a court ruling on a June lawsuit against the SEC, CEO Michael Sonnenshein said he was prepared to appeal if the court backed the SEC’s decision to reject the bitcoin ETF proposal.
/jlne.ws/400xEc2

SEC Issues $28 Million Award to Joint Whistleblowers
SEC
The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced an award of more than $28 million to joint whistleblowers who provided critical information and assistance in an SEC enforcement action. The joint whistleblowers’ detailed information prompted the opening of the SEC staff’s investigation and significantly contributed to the success of the action. They provided substantial analysis and ongoing assistance, which resulted in the return of millions of dollars to harmed investors.
/jlne.ws/3DhT0rJ

Statement on In the Matter of Bloomberg Finance, L.P.
Commissioner Hester M. Peirce and Commissioner Mark T. Uyeda – SEC
The Commission’s settled enforcement action finds that Bloomberg Finance, L.P. (“Bloomberg”) violated Section 17(a)(2) of the Securities Act of 1933, which prohibits the use of materially false statements to obtain money or property in the offer or sale of securities.[1] Because we do not believe that the particular statements at issue were made in the offer or sale of securities, we do not support bringing this action.
/jlne.ws/3JaQOGp

SEC Charges Investment Club Manager for Misappropriating Investor Funds
SEC
The Securities and Exchange Commission filed fraud charges against Austin D. Ellison-Meade, alleging that he fraudulently raised millions of dollars from investors in an investment club he managed called Baycap.io. According to the SEC complaint, Meade falsely claimed that Baycap.io’s trading strategy was based on a proprietary algorithm Meade developed that could accurately predict stocks that were poised for growth.
/jlne.ws/3R9q9vp

SEC Charges Wisconsin Investment Adviser with Defrauding Senior Clients
SEC
The Securities and Exchange Commission today filed a litigated action charging Anthony B. Liddle, a resident of Wausau, Wisconsin, with defrauding at least 13 investment advisory clients of approximately $1.9 million.
/jlne.ws/3wubscX

SEC Charges Avraham Eisenberg with Manipulating Mango Markets’ “Governance Token” to Steal $116 Million of Crypto Assets
SEC
The Securities and Exchange Commission charged Avraham Eisenberg with orchestrating an attack on a crypto asset trading platform, Mango Markets, by manipulating the MNGO token, a so-called governance token that was offered and sold as a security. Investigations into other securities law violations and into other entities and persons relating to the alleged misconduct are ongoing.
/jlne.ws/3WHkMVs

SEC Obtains Asset Freeze and Other Relief, Charges Miami Investment Advisers for Fraudulent Scheme Using Fabricated Audit Reports and Attorney Letters
SEC
The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that it filed an emergency action, and obtained an asset freeze, against Miami investment advisers Jack C. Ridall and Guss Capital, LLC (“Guss Capital”) for allegedly committing securities fraud through a scheme to deceive investors using fabricated audit reports and attorney letters.
/jlne.ws/3Hxrut2

Home finance companies and directors to pay $150,000 for failing to cooperate with AFCA
ASIC
Home finance companies General Commercial Group Pty Ltd (formerly known as Urban Commercial Group) and Eden Capital (Australia) Pty Ltd (formerly known as Southside Lending) have each been penalised $50,000 by the Federal Court for failing to cooperate with the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA). General Commercial director Dale Brendan Heremaia and his son, Eden Capital director Benjamin Eden Heremaia, were ordered to pay $30,000 and $20,000 respectively for their roles in the misconduct.
/jlne.ws/3ZWIDDr

Five individuals face conspiracy to insider deal and money laundering charges
FCA
The FCA alleges that Redinel Korfuzi, Oerta Korfuzi, Iva Spahiu, Rogerio de Aquino and Dema Almeziad conspired to commit offences of insider dealing between 17 December 2019 and 25 March 2021. Specifically, the FCA alleges that Mr Korfuzi used confidential inside information he accessed as an Analyst in his former role at Janus Henderson to enable timely and profitable trading in 49 companies through accounts held by his co-conspirators.
/jlne.ws/3wrujoY

Investing and Trading

Factbox: When might the U.S. default? Timeline of key events in debt limit battle
Gram Slattery and Karen Brettell – Reuters
Just days into a new sitting of the U.S. Congress, lawmakers are confronting what will be perhaps the most pivotal legislative issue of 2023: the national debt limit. Here are some key moments in the months ahead: FEB. 1 The Treasury Department will release a quarterly document next week laying out how it plans to fund the government over the next three months. The document, which includes information on debt the Treasury will issue, could shed light on the timing of a possible default. It follows a more general overview of quarterly funding to be released on Jan. 30.
/jlne.ws/3R7wQ0U

Albemarle calls for high lithium prices to fuel EV industry growth
Ernest Scheyder – Reuters
Albemarle Corp on Tuesday called for lithium prices to remain high indefinitely in order to help the mining industry develop new sources of the electric vehicle (EV) battery metal and fuel the green energy transition. The push for higher prices by the world’s largest lithium producer is likely to exacerbate the growing tension between EV manufacturers and mining companies that supply the materials crucial for the all-electric shift, with high metals prices threatening EV profitability.
/jlne.ws/404Iq1d

In the wake of massive layoffs, tech workers reconsider their future
Brian Contreras, Jaimie Ding – Los Angeles Times
When Quinn pivoted from the video game industry to a corporate tech gig in 2019, job security was a big part of the reason why. The gaming world was “feast and famine,” hiring and firing people all the time, said Quinn, who asked that his last name be withheld to avoid damaging future employment prospects. A more traditional software role – working on learning and development at a customer service company – seemed like a safer bet.
/jlne.ws/3R3AZTQ

Elon Musk Accuses Two Influential Firms of Controlling the Stock Market; Tesla CEO says investor-advisory firms ISS and Glass Lewis have enormous power.
Luc Olinga – The Street
Elon Musk likes to attack circles of power. It’s as if he’s on a mission. Nothing seems to motivate him more than slapping a revered institution or icon. He seems to be committed to challenging all forms of representations of power. During the past few weeks, the Techno King, as he’s known at Tesla (TSLA) – Get Free Report, has lashed out at Anthony Fauci, the immunologist who was the face of America’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
/jlne.ws/3XOI8K0

An NYU economics professor says that Elon Musk has an ‘amazingly fraught relationship with Wall Street’ and warns that Tesla faces several risks
Will Daniel – Fortune
After a brutal year for investors in 2022, Tesla stock has soared more than 30% this month alone-and that’s in spite of major price cuts to the company’s vehicles in the U.S. and Europe. Retail investors have piled into Elon Musk’s EV giant over the past six months, spending more on Tesla shares than they did in the previous five years combined, the Wall Street Journal reported Monday, citing data from Vanda Research. But Joseph Foudy, an economics professor at New York University’s Stern School of Business, is warning that Tesla faces “both short term and long term risks” that could ruin the party.
/jlne.ws/3XDS8G1

Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance

Legislative Carrot Feeds US Climate Transition; Despite causing short-term supply issues, the IRA is set to have far-reaching implications for net zero transition strategies, domestically and globally.
Emmy Hawker – ESG Investor
It’s been just over six months since US President Joe Biden signed the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) into law, pledging US$369 billion to accelerate the upscaling and deployment of renewable energy and clean technologies across the US. “It’s an unparalleled and historic piece of climate legislation that’s likely to be a significant catalyst for driving investment into the country’s [net zero] transition for years to come,” says Nikita Singhal, Co-Head of Sustainable Investment and ESG at Lazard Asset Management. The 730-page bill is rife with long-term grants, loans and tax advantages designed to incentivise change, rather than punishing carbon-intensive industries, driving the domestic development of industries like electric vehicles (EVs) and solar. It’s expected to cut US emissions by over 40% from 2005 levels by 2030, growing GDP by nearly 1% by the end of the decade and creating nine million jobs.
/jlne.ws/3XDJ83F

A Startup Is Turning Porta-Potties Into Sources of Fertilizer; Vermont-based Wasted is focused on “container-based sanitation” – toilet systems that collect human waste and transport it to facilities for nutrient-recovery treatment.
Carly Wanna – Bloomberg
For all its crap, the United States isn’t doing much with it. Wasted, a Burlington-Vermont based startup, is hoping to change that. The three-year-old company collects human waste from portable toilets and transports it to a processing center, where the excrement is treated through a nutrient-recovery process to create fertilizer. On Wednesday, Wasted announced $7.5 million in seed-stage funding from investors that include Collaborative Fund, Divergent Capital, Day One Ventures, Third Sphere, Pure Ventures and Gratitude Railroad.
/jlne.ws/3HvWKbG

Sky to serve up carbon labels on staff café and restaurant menus; Media giant becomes latest firm to embrace carbon labelling as a means of nudging its staff to make greener everyday choices.
Michael Holder – Business Green
Sky has become the latest firm to embrace carbon labelling as a means of encouraging staff to make greener everyday choices, with the media giant yesterday announcing plans to rollout a new food emissions labelling system across its internal café and restaurant menus. Dubbed Carbon Counts, the programme is designed to help the company’s 25,000 employees in the UK make more informed decisions on the CO2 impact of their food choices by adding labels containing climate data to menus at all 29 of its restaurants across its 15 UK sites.
/jlne.ws/3WCSQlH

Oil-Sands’ Carbon Capture Moonshot Faces Hurdle of Scarce Labor; MEG CEO says contractors lack workers for yearly maintenance; Skills shortage has Pathways seeking more time on carbon cuts
Robert Tuttle – Bloomberg
Canada’s oil-sands industry is examining how many workers it will need to build the carbon capture system that’s key to its emissions-reductions pledges, and leaders already are warning that scarce skilled labor may hinder projects. The Pathways Alliance – which includes major producers Suncor Energy Inc., Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. and Cenovus Energy Inc. – is studying the labor issue with other organizations, and the results should be available in coming months, Pathways President Kendall Dilling said in an interview.
/jlne.ws/3R4o9oc

A Class-Action Wave Is Coming for ESG Claims; In-house counsel all over the world are bracing for a greenwashing lawsuit tsunami amid tougher disclosure requirements.
Tim Quinson – Bloomberg
Lawyers are bracing for an increase in ESG-related cases as corporate disclosure requirements stiffen around the world. A survey by the law firm Norton Rose Fulbright found that 28% of more than 430 general counsel and in-house litigation leaders said their so-called ESG dispute exposure increased in 2022, and 24% expect it to deepen over the next 12 months. The key reasons are the absence of clear environmental, social and governance metrics and requirements, and the heightened regulatory scrutiny on the importance of ESG.
/jlne.ws/3XYlIFW

Logged tropical forests are a ‘substantial’ carbon source for at least 10 years
Orla Dwyer – Carbon Brief
Logged tropical forests are a net source of carbon emissions for at least one decade after being degraded, according to new research. Tropical forests that have previously been logged or otherwise degraded are generally thought to take in more carbon than they emit, through quickly re-grown trees. But new research shows that this carbon uptake is overshadowed “by the high emissions from soil organic matter and from deadwood as a result of logging”, the corresponding author on the paper tells Carbon Brief.
/jlne.ws/3ZYU6T0

UK pension schemes search out forestry investments; Nest and Cushon schemes with £26bn under management look to put funds into trees as a growth area
Chris Flood – Financial Times
Nest and Cushon, two UK pension schemes with combined assets of more than £26bn, are in a joint search for asset management partners to develop new forestry investment strategies to address climate change pressures.
/jlne.ws/3R3xmxc

ExxonMobil shows the perils of corporate science; The conglomerate’s research on climate change was much more accurate than its public messaging
Anjana Ahuja – Financial Times
In 1962, Humble Oil ran an advertisement boasting that “each day it supplies enough energy to melt 7mn tons of glacier”. Within two decades, Humble, by then subsumed into Exxon, was becoming far more reticent about what its products could do to the environment.
/jlne.ws/3H6M6Xp

Los Angeles County Blocks New Oil Wells, Mirroring Citywide Ban; Ordinance to ban new oil, gas drilling takes effect in 30 days; County also developing strategy to phase out existing wells
Julia Fanzeres – Bloomberg
Los Angeles County has blocked new oil and gas drilling and will phase out of existing operations, expanding on a city-wide ban that was imposed last month. The county’s Board of Supervisors on Tuesday unanimously passed the ordinance that takes effect in 30 days.
/jlne.ws/3DaL2AQ

UK ESG Rules Set Higher Bar Than EU’s, Says Group With £19 Trillion in Assets
Greg Ritchie – Bloomberg
The UK’s proposed rules to eradicate greenwashing in investment funds set a higher bar than those already enforced in the European Union, according to one of Britain’s biggest and most influential finance industry groups. The UK Sustainable Investment and Finance Association, whose members represent over £19 trillion ($23 trillion) in assets, said the upcoming Sustainability Disclosure Requirements (SDR) will enhance transparency for investors. While UKSIF criticized some parts of the Financial Conduct Authority’s proposals, it also praised the overall approach when held up against the EU’s Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (SFDR).
/jlne.ws/3R6ICZt

Hush! Moving past ‘greenwashing’ through effective use of data; Keeping quiet over climate strategies is the latest obstacle to organizational climate action.
Madeline Bennett – Diginomica
We’re all talking about sustainability and climate change strategies, aren’t we? Well, up to a point, but there’s a danger of some organizations choosing to keep quiet, a phenomenon dubbed as ‘green hushing’ at the World Economic Forum meeting in Davos last week. Helena Gualinga, Co-Founder, Indigenous Youth Collective of Amazon Defenders, said one specific area where data and technology could help indigenous communities is tracking and reporting human rights violations. Across Ecuador and the Amazon, communities are facing a multitude of threats: deforestation, mining, oil and hydro-electric power stations, among others.
/jlne.ws/3Jwh9yX

Institutions

Barclays set to reveal Cathal Deasy as co-head of global banking; Former Credit Suisse dealmaker to take over advisory and capital markets unit, alongside Taylor Wright
Arash Massoudi and Stephen Morris – Financial Times
Barclays is set to choose former Credit Suisse dealmaker Cathal Deasy as co-head of global banking as the British lender continues to overhaul its investment banking unit, according to two people familiar with the hire. Deasy’s future has been a subject of speculation since his abrupt departure from Credit Suisse in December, less than two months after he was promoted to co-head of the Swiss lender’s investment banking and capital markets business.
/jlne.ws/3kIISly

Work & Management

Gen Z, It’s Not Good to Have Your Boss Hate You; For any young worker who needs to hear this, your power in the labor market won’t last and quietly quitting could be setting you up to get loudly fired.
Allison Schrager – Bloomberg
Every generation faces a skeptical reception in the labor force. Baby boomers were called self-centered, Gen X was lazy and millennials were considered entitled. For Gen Z, it’s the same – but different. When I was at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, last week, there was the normal buzz about economic conditions and climate change. But everyone I spoke with mainly wanted to talk about something else: How the pandemic has changed the labor market, and especially how it has affected Gen Z. Young people have never entered the labor force with more power – unemployment is low and the demand for labor is high – and they are exercising that power by changing workplace norms. The good times may not last, though, and Gen Z could wind up being the ones who pay the bigger price.
/jlne.ws/3j4nI0B

Wellness Exchange

The lessons COVID taught Chicago and Illinois
Katherine Davis – Crain’s Chicago Business
Illinois’ top public health officials say they have learned various lessons throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, which include new methods to communicate with the public, prioritize health equity and prevent the spread of other diseases. Chicago Department of Public Health Chief Dr. Allison Arwady detailed her takeaways from the pandemic in a social media briefing today, where she was joined virtually by Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. Sameer Vohra.
/jlne.ws/3wvVnDI

China says peak COVID infections exceeded 7 million daily, deaths more than 4,000 daily
Reuters
China’s daily new COVID-19 infections hit a peak of more than 7 million per day around Dec. 22, while deaths reached a daily peak of more than 4,000 on Jan. 4, the country’s Centre for Disease Control and Prevention said on Wednesday.
/jlne.ws/3XTpmRx

Regions

Tourists swarm gambling hub Macau over Lunar New Year after COVID curbs dropped
Lam Yik – Reuters
The world’s biggest gambling hub Macau has seen tens of thousands of tourists stream daily into its casinos and picturesque cobbled streets over the Lunar New Year holiday, a stark contrast to the dearth of visitors since 2020.
/jlne.ws/3iYdoHD

Heavy snow causes havoc in Japan as cold snap sweeps through Asia
Reuters
Heavy snow blanketed wide swathes of Japan on Wednesday, snarling traffic, forcing hundreds of flight cancellations, disrupting train travel and leaving at least one person dead. An unusually cold weather front and extreme low pressure systems set snow falling and strong winds blowing across Japan from Tuesday after causing havoc in other Asia countries earlier this week.
/jlne.ws/3wuWRhu

Natural Gas Shortages Hit China as Temperatures Plunge; Local governments starved for cash after enormous spending on costly “zero Covid” measures cannot afford to keep up adequate supplies of gas.
Keith Bradsher – The New York Times
For many people across China, a shortage of natural gas and alarmingly cold temperatures are making a difficult winter unbearable. For Li Yongqiang, they mean freezing nights without heat. “We dare not turn on the heat overnight – after using it for five or six hours, the gas stops again,” Mr. Li, a 45-year-old grocer, said by telephone from his home in northern China’s Hebei Province. “The gas shortage is really affecting our lives.”
/jlne.ws/3HwYOjQ

Fat Chickens to Result in Losses for South African Poultry Firm; Production costs exceed chicken sale price, Astral Foods Says; Earnings per share for six months seen falling as much as 90%
Rene Vollgraaff and Khuleko Siwele – Bloomberg
Astral Foods Ltd., one of South Africa’s biggest chicken producers by revenue, expects its poultry division to incur “significant losses” in the first half of its financial year because of incessant power cuts and high input prices. Astral couldn’t raise prices as required and “continues to subsidize the increased cost of production to our customer base,” the poultry producer said in a statement on Wednesday. The blackouts – known locally as load-shedding – have delayed slaughtering of birds resulting in heavier and older poultry, according to the statement.
/jlne.ws/3H3woMR

Miscellaneous

2022 Was a Deadly Year for Journalists, Especially in Latin America; There were nearly as many journalists killed in Mexico alone as there were in Ukraine.
Eric Nagourney – The New York Times
Even with journalists from around the world covering the biggest conflict in Europe since World War II, it was Latin America that proved deadliest for reporters last year, with violence against them spiking to new levels, a monitoring group said Tuesday. There were 67 killings reported for 2022 around the world – the most deaths in five years – and nearly half of those took place in the region, the Committee to Protect Journalists said in its annual report.
/jlne.ws/404C7uk

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