The SEC launches a broad investigation and overhaul of order placement systems and controls, seeking new ways to control and mitigate damage from high-speed orders. Sort of “Finding Nemo: The Financial Episode”, perhaps. CME Group announces the planned launch date for the exchange’s new Chinese steel rebar swap futures contract. Exchanges have carefully considered the various speeds and methods available for market participants, and have concluded that it’s really ok to charge more for better access. In today’s First Read section, be sure to check out the JLN Metals box and the interview there with Michael Turek, senior director of the Metals Group at Newedge.
Senior Auditor Departs National Futures Association
JACOB BUNGE – Dow Jones
A key regulator has departed the National Futures Association, as the derivatives industry’s self-regulatory body seeks to tighten oversight of firms and assume oversight of the huge swaps trading market.
**** Aren’t all regulators “Key Regulators?”
Cooperation Agreement Signed Between Eurex And SMU – SMU Is First University In Southeast Asia To Receive Market Data From Eurex For Teaching And Research
On 27 September 2012, the international derivatives market place Eurex Exchange signed a cooperation agreement with the Singapore Management University (SMU), Singapore’s first public-funded autonomous university. Both partners will cooperate in the area of financial market education and research to increase the understanding and knowledge of the financial markets in Asia and Europe.
Futures exchange members get relief on margin rule
A large group of U.S. exchange members who speculate on prices will not be automatically forced to pay higher margins as a result of a controversial new rule that takes effect early next month, the two top exchanges said. CME Group, the largest U.S. futures exchange, said in a notice that the Commodity Futures Trading Commission had interpreted the initial margin requirement as one to “preserve historic practices for certain hedge or member accounts.”
**** Historic practices is an interesting phrase.
Regulatory clarity buoys electronic swaps at Icap
Tom Osborn – Financial News
Icap has enjoyed a sharp rise in trading volumes on its electronic interest-rate swap platform, according to chief executive Michael Spencer, who said today that the interdealer broker had benefited from clarity on new regulations governing the over-the-counter derivatives market.
INTL FCStone grows from commodity broking to breaking news
INTL FCStone Inc, a mid-sized futures brokerage with a century-long history in the market, is taking a novel approach toward the industrywide problem of profitability: becoming a news agency.
***** Hmmm. Where have I seen this before?
Insight: As cotton surged, China trader amassed $510 million bet
Reuters via Yahoo! News
A landmark U.S. fine for excessive speculation in the benchmark cotton futures market has revealed a startling new dimension to last year’s blistering winter price rally: the biggest bull was a Chinese trader with a $510 million punt.
Deutsche Boerse hits EU plan on high frequency share trade
Reuters via Yahoo! News
FRANKFURT – A European Parliament’s plan to introduce sweeping reforms of securities markets will have a negative impact on Frankfurt bourse operator Deutsche Boerse, a senior company executive told Reuters on Wednesday. Deutsche Boerse is particularly worried about the European lawmakers’ plan to slow down high-speed trading by half a second.
What Is High-Frequency Trading? Here’s What The Whole Debate Is All About In Plain English
Even when something dramatic happens in the world of high frequency trading, it’s hard to hold on to the issue and have a clear conversation. Perhaps that’s because its a really difficult topic to put in plain English. Nothing about HFT is simple.
Kravis, Roberts Shared DNA Makes Buyout Men Unique
Jason Kelly – Bloomberg
Ten thousand bucks. Henry Kravis and his cousin George Roberts each scribbled out a check in that amount, smaller companions to the $100,000 draft their more established colleague, former boss and partner Jerome Kohlberg, had written.
The many lives of Goldman’s partners
Giles Turner – Financial News
In the world of banking, being made a partner at Goldman Sachs is the “golden ticket”. But what happens when these gilded roosters decide to fly the coop and join the wider world?
CEOs on Twitter: Fear Makes Some Executives Leery of Social Media
LESLIE KWOH And MELISSA KORN – WSJ.com
When General Electric Co. Chief Executive Jeffrey Immelt tweeted for the first time this month, his “Hello Twitter” was greeted with some snarky replies, including this one: “@JeffImmelt how come my grandfather got on twitter before you?”
Orc Webinar – Explore opportunities in the energy markets
Wednesday, October 3 at 10 am CT/ 4 pm BST/ 11 pm HKT
For 25 years, Orc has been helping our customers identify and take advantage of new opportunities in the capital markets. Next week, we will join forces with Advantage Futures and the Intercontinental Exchange to bring you an interactive webinar about one of the most liquid and exciting new markets. Join us in discussing:
-opportunities with less risk and less volatile returns
-growth and evolution in the energy markets
-benchmarks and oil pricing
-using Orc Market Maker for valuations and pricing models
-utilizing Orc Liquidator to automate your trading strategies
CQG Webinar: Bell Curve Trading: A Supply and Demand Trading Methodology
October 10, 2012, 3:30 p.m. CDT
This webinar will provide an introduction to Bell Curve Trading’s unique and powerful supply and demand trading methodology that can be used in CQG Integrated Client. Bell Curve Trading adds value to their global client base by identifying superior risk/reward trading and investment opportunities in all time frames; and mapping out entry points, profit objectives, exit strategies, and risk management parameters (gauging risk in price and time).
Register at jlne.ws/SDi8hm
Interview: Michael Turek, Senior Director, Metals Group, Newedge USA
Newedge, a leading multi-asset brokerage and clearing house owned jointly by Société Générale and Crédit Agricole CIB, recently announced a slew of new hires and promotions at their metals desk. The move came after a period in which the company saw several members of its metals group move over to other firms. Newedge, a category 1 ring dealing member of the London Metal Exchange, is currently the single largest LME participant by market share, according to Michael Turek, senior director of the Metals Group at Newedge USA. Turek sat down with JLN Metals editor Sarah Rudolph in his New York office for a chat about Newedge’s metals business, the HKEx takeover of LME, the outlook for China, and the current low interest-rate environment, among other things.
Q: What is unique or special about Newedge’s metals group?
A: We have a customer-centric model that is somewhat unique. It is based on a non-proprietary model. We don’t compete with our customers positionally; we’re there to facilitate trades. We don’t have any proprietary trading of either client assets or our own.
We are very overcapitalized in the client positions we hold, on purpose. We maintain what I called purity of balance sheet in that unlike most of our competitors, we don’t have any Level 3 risky assets on our balance sheet, no concealed or non-reportable derivatives positions. It’s all nearby, very fungible secure assets. And we’re not trading with those assets. Metals is Newedge’s fastest growing business.
Q: What impact do you believe the Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing takeover of the London Metal Exchange will have on LME’s markets?
A: We’re excited about the new ownership of the LME, particularly given HKEx’s commitment not to change the format in terms of maintaining floor trading and daily and monthly prompts. My sense is the exchange will be driven as we are by client needs. So it will probably be a fairly stable exchange. It is natural for businesses to be attracted to areas where capital is generated, and that is the Far East. We supported that merger. We were already established in the Far East through our joint venture with CITIC, which permits qualified corporate participants access to Chinese markets through the Newedge platform and facilitates arbitrage opportunities.
So for us, this is additional synergy. Assuming the Chinese central authorities will become a little bit more relaxed about currency transferability, we hope that this alliance might culminate with a Chinese currency denominated contract or two.
What isn’t being spoken about much, but what I feel would be an important component of this marriage is a chain of LME registered warehouses across the Chinese mainland, which would help serve China’s needs as the largest producer and consumer of metals. That warehouse chain will be very significant in building the business and in building Western-Sino trade relationships.
For the rest of the interview, visit the JLN Metals blog at jlne.ws/SAjXeZ
Steven Crutchfield of NYSE Discusses New Management Structure and Options Technology
Jim Kharouf, John Lothian News
Steven Crutchfield was named CEO of NYSE Euronext’s two U.S. options exchanges, NYSE Amex Options and NYSE Arca Options earlier this month. The move marks a new management strategy for NYSE’s options markets, which had been managed separately. Crutchfield spoke with John Lothian News editor-in-chief Jim Kharouf about the new management structure, new initiatives for market makers and in risk management as well as dealing with lower options volumes this year.
FX Option Gauges Suggest Further Euro Losses Likely
David Willmer, The Wall Street Journal
The euro has traded at two-week lows against a number of the major currencies Wednesday, and foreign exchange option market gauges suggest further losses for the common currency could well be in store.
The VIX roars back despite positive economic reports
Wall Street Sector Selector
The VIX came back with a surge today after the Standard and Poors cut the outlook rating for overall European to -.8%. The VIX index rose an astonishing 9.05%, while VIX ETFs including NYSEARCA:VXX and NYSEARCA:TVIX rose 7.88% and 14.39% respectively. The fact that three positive economic reports did not push the VIX lower is likely indicative of the fact that S&P and investors feel an impending doom with Europe, despite Super Mario’s words a few weeks back regarding easing.
MarketsWiki Page of the Day
MarketsWiki Recent Updates
Companies, Organizations and Groups
28,895,091 pages viewed, 7,120 articles, 147,890 edits
SEC Looks for the ‘Kill Switches’
BY JACOB BUNGE – WSJ.com
U.S. securities regulators have launched a sweeping review of the systems brokerages and trading firms use to place orders, intensifying their response to a spate of technological mishaps that have tested investors’ confidence in the stock market.
CME Group Announces the Launch of Chinese Steel Rebar Swap Futures Based on Mysteel Index
CME Group, the world’s leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace today announced the launch of Chinese Steel Rebar HRB400 (Mysteel) Swap Futures to begin trading on October 15, subject to regulatory review. This product, which will be listed with, and subject to the rules and regulations of NYMEX, will be the first product listed by a CME Group exchange based on Mysteel’s market-leading price data services.
Exchanges See No Unfairness in Data Delivery Speeds
Peter Chapman – Traders Magazine
You get what you pay for. In the wake of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s action this month against NYSE Euronext for disseminating New York Stock Exchange market data to paying customers ahead of other investors, exchange executives note that the public feed is naturally slower and those wanting their data faster expect to pay up.
EU lawmakers call for enforced delay on high frequency trading
The Wall Street Journal
European lawmakers called for major restrictions on rapid-fire trading on Wednesday, voting to force trading venues and exchanges to impose a minimum half-second delay on executing orders in a bid to temper excessive market volatility.
EU parliament backs tighter trading restrictions
Philip Stafford in London and Alex Barker in Brussels – FT.com
The City of London has suffered a blow after European legislators backed tighter restrictions on banks’ trading activities and opposed greater competition between clearing houses in the latest overhaul of EU financial markets.
Ex-Credit Suisse Banker Arrested in U.K.
CHAD BRAY AND JEAN EAGLESHAM – WSJ.com
Seven months ago, U.S. prosecutors urged a Credit Suisse AG investment banker in London to return to the U.S. to face criminal charges related to inflating mortgage-bond values in the financial crisis. On Wednesday, the waiting stopped.
The Big Interview: Sheila Bair
Former FDIC chairman Sheila Bair tells WSJ Heard on the Street reporter Rolfe Winkler she feels Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner skewed the banking bailout to the needs of Citigroup and that she favors breaking up the big banks.
Job axe falls on Mideast bankers as global giants retrench
Reuters via Yahoo! News
DUBAI – Big U.S. and European banks are cutting investment banking jobs in the Middle East as the promise of emerging markets is overshadowed by a need to slash costs and a dearth of deal activity. Institutions including Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse and Japan’s Nomura Holdings have all cut jobs in their investment banking teams for the region in recent weeks.
Germany Does What The SEC Hasn’t – Prepares To Ban HFT
The EU assembly just voted affirmatively to impose a spate of rules to control ‘high-frequency-trading that, as the WSJ reports, was advanced by Germany following their concerns that speedy traders have brought instability to markets.
China pours $58bn into money markets
Simon Rabinovitch in Beijing – FT.com
The Chinese central bank has injected a record amount of money into the financial system this week to alleviate a cash crunch that had driven up borrowing costs. The People’s Bank of China has poured Rmb365bn ($58bn) into money markets over the past three days through reverse repurchase agreements, the largest weekly amount in history.
Banks Must Come Clean on Assets, Says BOE
JASON DOUGLAS – WSJ.com
Uncertainty about the value of bank assets is hindering lenders’ ability to raise capital, the Bank of England said Thursday, signaling it may take a tougher line on controversial methods banks use to calculate the value of their portfolios.
CFTC’s Division Of Clearing And Risk Issues Extension Of Time For Compliance From Certain Pre-Trade Screening Requirements
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) Division of Clearing and Risk (DCR) today announced an extension of time for compliance in order to provide additional time for market participants to coordinate on the communication of limits for give-ups and bunched orders for futures and swaps. This extension of time is intended to provide sufficient time to transition to fully compliant pre-trade screening no later than June 1, 2013.
U.S. Agencies Reopen Comment Period On Swap Margin And Capital Proposed Rulemaking
Five federal agencies on Wednesday reopened the comment period on a proposed rule to establish margin and capital requirements for swap dealers, major swap participants, security-based swap dealers, and major security-based swap participants for which one of the agencies is the prudential regulator, as required by sections 731 and 764 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.
FSA’s Wheatley Said to Recommend Regulation of Libor-Setters
Lindsay Fortado and Gavin Finch – Bloomberg
Martin Wheatley, who is leading a review for the U.K. Treasury into how Libor is governed, may recommend that bankers who make submissions to the benchmark should be regulated, said a person with knowledge of the plans.
BoE’s Jenkins says bust myths to improve bank rules
Reuters via Yahoo! News
Myths from banks about regulation make it harder to coordinate rules internationally and lead to poor standard setting, a senior British financial policymaker said on Wednesday.
Dodd-Frank’s ‘Orderly Liquidation’ Is Out of Order – WSJ.com
BY SCOTT PRUITT AND ALAN WILSON
The tendency of the law must always be to narrow the field of uncertainty.” Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote that more than a century ago, but the sentiment runs all the way to our nation’s roots. Under our Constitution, the rule of law provides the certainty and transparency necessary to protect individual liberty and support economic growth.
Editorial: High-frequency trading insanity
SEC is soliciting ideas about how to control it. Here’s one: Slap a small transaction tax on rapid trades.
ESMA Publishes The Responses To The Consultation On The Treatment Of Repurchase And Reverse Repurchase Agreements
ESMA Submits Comment Letters To IASB And EFRAG
[AMF France] Facts and Figures 2011
Exchanges & Trading Facilities
BM&FBOVESPA begins trading in the S&P 500 Futures Contract
On Monday, October 01, BM&FBOVESPA will begin trading in the S&P 500 futures contract settled in cash to the price of the S&P 500 Index futures contract, listed and traded on CME, a CME Group exchange. This is the first futures contract traded on the Brazilian Exchange to reference a U.S. stock index.
“Small Business Connections: Marketing Meets Microfinancing” Workshop Tour Comes To New Orleans – Accion, NYSE Euronext, And Yelp Bring The Big Startup To Local Entrepreneurs – Galvez Restaurant, October 10, 6:00PM-8:00PM
On October 10, the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: NYX), Accion and Yelp will bring the NYSE Big StartUp “Small Business Connections: Marketing Meets Microfinancing” nationwide workshop tour to New Orleans. The event will provide local small business owners with two resources vital to growing any business: social media marketing know-how and access to capital. New Orleans marks the eighth stop on the Small Business Connections Tour.
Irish Stock Exchange Chief Calls For Irish Enterprise Policy To Stimulate Next Generation Of Global Irish Businesses
KCBT Lowers Minimum Margins for HRW Wheat Old Crop/New Crop Spreads
Direct Edge Market Data Notice #12-05: Edge Routed Liquidity Report Available October 1, 2012
Hedge Funds & Managed Futures
Hedge Fund Pivot Joins BTG to Defy Bacon’s Investment Desert
Carl George’s $1.7 billion hedge fund at Pivot Capital Management Ltd. rose 17 percent in 2011 after he predicted a surprise interest rate cut in Brazil. He gained another 6 percent in the first eight months of this year after betting Australian policy makers would lower rates to stimulate their economy, said investors in the fund, who asked not to be identified because the returns are private.
Brevan Howard Hires Former Deutsche Bank Strategist Gerald Lucas
Brevan Howard Asset Management LLP, the $36.7 billion hedge fund that counts Alan Howard among its founders, hired former Deutsche Bank AG investment strategist Gerald Lucas.
Deutsche Bank’s Lehr Leaves to Form Hedge Fund With Associates
Hal Lehr, a managing director for global cross-commodity trading at Deutsche Bank AG , resigned to form a hedge fund with three of his former associates.
Citi hedge fund spin-out hires Morgan Stanley veteran
The former head of Europe at Morgan Stanley Investment Management has emerged as chief executive at one of this year’s most hotly-anticipated hedge fund launches, Financial News has learned.
No sign China banks eyeing Europe’s: Deutsche Bank
Reuters via Yahoo! News
Deutsche Bank Chief Financial Officer Stefan Krause on Wednesday said he saw no signs that large Chinese banks are on the prowl to buy European lenders.
Cerberus to Sell $2.5 Billion Stake in Japanese Bank
HIROKO TABUCHI – NYTimes.com
Cerberus Capital Management will start selling its $2.5 billion stake in Japan’s struggling Aozora Bank this year, the Asian lender said on Thursday, in a much-anticipated exit for the American private equity firm after a more than a decade since its initial investment.
Shrinking U.S. Corn Supply Trails Use for First Time in 16 Years
Jeff Wilson – Bloomberg
Corn supplies in the U.S., the world’s biggest grower and exporter, are dropping below last year’s domestic usage for just the third time in half a century after a Midwest drought damaged crops from Ohio to Nebraska.
CEOs more pessimistic on sales and hiring, Business Roundtable says
Don Lee – chicagotribune.com
The American economy just can’t seem to catch a break. Now that the housing market is reviving and consumer optimism is edging higher, business investments and confidence among America’s leading corporate bosses appear to be waning.
Internet Funding Boom Ends as Fast as It Began
PUI-WING TAM And AMIR EFRATI – WSJ.com
The falling stock prices of Facebook Inc., Zynga Inc. and Groupon Inc. are causing some investors to pull back from Web start-ups.
Blackstone raises up to $960 million for retail credit fund
Reuters via Yahoo! News
Blackstone Group LP , the largest publicly listed alternative asset manager, said on Wednesday that it had raised up to $960 million for its third publicly listed mutual fund to invest in corporate credit whose quality is below investment grade.
BAM Raises $323 Million for U.S. Multifamily Investment in Fairfield-Managed Fund
Brookfield Asset Management, the Toronto-based alternative asset manager with over $150 billion in assets under management, and its multifamily subsidiary, Fairfield Residential Co., said they jointly raised $323 million in total commitments for its U.S. multifamily value add fund, far eclipsing their $250 million target.
Banks & Brokers
Banks fail to repel cyber threat
Los Angeles Times
Attacks that have tied up bank websites show U.S. financial institutions’ vulnerability to electronic terrorism. A shadowy but well organized hacker group in the Middle East has disrupted the electronic banking operations of America’s largest financial institutions in recent days, underscoring U.S. vulnerability to online terrorism.
[Video] Big Banks Worth Less If Broken Up, Graseck Says
Betsy Graseck, an analyst at Morgan Stanley, talks about the debate over the value of the big banks if they are broken up. Graseck talks with Tom Keene and Scarlet Fu on Bloomberg Television’s “Surveillance.”
Bank of America Merrill Lynch Cuts Staff in Australia-Source
Bank of America Merrill Lynch has begun a new round of job cuts in Australia, a person familiar with the matter said Thursday, becoming the latest investment bank to cut costs amid light deal flow and sluggish equity markets due to the stuttering global economic recovery.
RBS May Need to Offer Direct Line at 25% Discount, Investors Say
Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc may have to sell Direct Line Insurance Group Plc for about 25 percent less than the insurer’s estimated market value in its initial public offering, investors say.
ICAP Shipping announces acquisition of CTI Shipbrokers (India) Pvt. Ltd
ICAP Shipping, the shipping business of ICAP plc, the world’s leading interdealer broker and provider of post trade risk and information services, today announces that it has acquired shares with a gross asset value of US$2.464million in CTI Shipbrokers (India) Pvt. Ltd (CTI India) from Captain Jaideep Kapoor and Tradex Chartering & Trading Private Limited.
Santander Totta Plans Mortgage-Backed Bond Exchange Offer
Banco Santander Totta will offer to exchange mortgage-backed bonds for up 600 million euro covered bonds, one of the banks organizing the deal said Wednesday.
JPMorgan Chase Releases Full Set of 2011-2012 Corporate Responsibility Reports
Clearing & Settlement
Exclusive: EU regulators to suspend ICE, bank CDS probe – source
Reuters via Yahoo! News
EU regulators are set to suspend indefinitely an antitrust investigation into credit default swaps deals offered by clearing house ICE Clear Europe to nine banks, due to the lack of evidence, a European Commission source said on Wednesday.
Three Leading FX Clearing Firms choose Harmony CCP Connect for OTC FX Clearing Connectivity
Traiana, the leading provider of post-trade solutions, announced today the addition of three further clearing firms to Traiana’s comprehensive initiative to automate processing of OTC foreign exchange (FX) derivatives with clearinghouses.
LCH.Clearnet’s ForexClear offers 95% NDF market coverage
In response to increased market demand, LCH.Clearnet Ltd (LCH.Clearnet), the international clearing house, has expanded the range of currencies cleared through ForexClear. The eleven major currencies now available, which enable 95% of the NDF market to be cleared, are: Brazilian Real, Russian Rouble, Indian Rupee, Chilean Peso, Chinese Yuan, Korean Won, Colombian Peso, Indonesian Rupiah, Malaysian Ringgit, Philippine Peso and Taiwan Dollar.
Dion Global Solutions Launches Market Data Centre
Dion Global Solutions Ltd., technology partner to the financial services industry, has expanded its market data product portfolio by launching Market Data Centre or MDC, a multi-asset market data aggregation and validation engine.
Hedge fund CEO pleads guilty in $4 million swindle
The former CEO of a hedge fund set up for the “little guys” and “moms and pops” admitted today that he conspired with others to swindle those same “little guys” of more than $4 million.
CFTC orders Chinese firm to pay $1.5 million over position rules
China-based Sheenson Investments Ltd and a stakeholder agreed to pay $1.5 million to settle U.S. charges that it violated rules on the size of positions traders can hold in the cotton and soybean futures markets, a U.S. regulator said on Tuesday.
UK’s Financial Services Authority Publishes Six-Monthly Firm Complaints Data For The First Half Of 2012
ASIC: Credit Suisse Equities (Australia) Limited Pays $52,000 Infringement Notice Penalty
Former CEO of collapsed WA hotel chain in court
Environmental & Energy
Climate Change Reducing Global GDP by $1.2 Trillion
Climate change and pollution related to carbon-dioxide emissions are reducing the world’s gross domestic product by 1.6 percent a year, about $1.2 trillion, according to a report.
Report: Carbon tax could halve deficit
The Hill’s E2 Wire
Taxing carbon emissions could raise enough money to eventually cut the deficit in half, but policymakers would face tough questions about whether to use the cash to brighten the fiscal outlook or tackle other needs, a report finds.
Climate change a ghost issue in U.S. election
It was one of the rare moments in Mitt Romney’s otherwise pedestrian convention speech that brought the house down.
Renminbi bond issuance seen growing with China-Malaysia trade
Reuters via Yahoo! Finance
Growing trade between China, the world’s second largest economy, and Malaysia will encourage more yuan-denominated fundraising through the issuance of conventional and Islamic bonds, Malaysia’s central bank chief said on Thursday.
Thai Bourse Readies New SET50 Options For Oct Launch
Thailand Futures Exchange (TFEX), under The Stock Exchange of Thailand group is ready to start its modified SET50 Options on September 27, 2012 as it will not create the new series, expiring in September 2013 to reflect the upcoming changes.
Tokyo Grain Exchange: SPAN Parameters Effective From October 1, 2012 To October 15, 2012
HKFE Announces Revised Margins For Futures Contracts
HKEx, SHSE And SZSE Establish JV For New Products And Services
Hong Kong’s Securities And Futures Commission Obtains $10.7 Million Compensation Order Against Former CEO Of China Asean Resources
Qatar Exchange Conducts Survey To Evaluate Listed Companies’ Investor Relations Efforts
Bursa Malaysia Publicly Reprimands Alam Maritim Resources Berhad For Breach Of Main Market Listing Requirements
Sixth Meeting Of The OIC Member States’ Stock Exchanges Forum Convened In Istanbul
Bursa Malaysia Introduces Rule To Facilitate Exchange Traded Bonds And Sukuks