Spot Trading cuts headcount; Wall Street Fines Fall in Trump’s First Year; J.P. Morgan’s Mobile Payments Struggle

Nov 14, 2017

First Read

Hits & Takes
By JLN Staff

Exchange Analytics has released a new Market Conduct Training Course.~JJL

The World Gold Council reports that gold-backed ETF holdings increased by 3.3 in October to 2,347.6 tonnes. Europe led inflows, as investors added 11.2t of gold through funds; North America had outflows of 8t, reversing some September gains; funds in Asia gained 0.8t, but ETFs in other regions lost -0.7t in October. This is amid a year-on-year 9% drop in general demand for gold to 915 tonnes.~SR

The CME’s Blu Putnam and Erik Norland have another piece out comparing the characteristics of Bitcoin and gold. Norland also released an outlook on wheat.~SD

FIA’s monthly FCM Tracker is out. Here is the link to the seg funds comparison table. One oddity – for the past year Boci Commodities and Futures USA has had $6 in its Part 30 funds.~SD

Cboe Global Markets announced that Edward Tilly, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, and Chris Concannon, President and Chief Operating Officer, will jointly present at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch Future of Financials 2017 Conference in New York on Wednesday, November 15, at 10:45 a.m. (Eastern Time). ~SR

PRMIA’s 5th Annual Canadian Risk Forum will be in Montreal on November 14-15, 2017.~JJL

Yesterday’s JLN Options newsletter is available HERE.~JJL

Yesterday’s JLN Asia Pacific Financial News is available HERE.~JJL


The Industry Discusses Cryptocurrencies and DLT, Part II

At the 33rd Annual FIA Futures and Options Expo in mid-October, John Lothian News spoke with a variety of industry participants about upcoming milestones and trends in financial markets.

This sixth video in the series is the second to cover the booming cryptocurrency space and its technological underpinnings. In part two, Gary DeWaal, special counsel with Katten Muchin Rosenman, John Omahen, FIS’ head of product strategy, Anthony Tassone, founder of GreenKey Technologies and Carl Gilmore, president of Integritas Financial Consulting, share their thoughts on the crypto space.

Watch the video and read the rest here »


Bitcoin steadies as CME Group CEO says futures trading set to debut 2nd week of December
Mark DeCambre – CME Group
CME Group CEO Terry Duffy on Monday said he expected the exchange he heads to debut futures trading in bitcoin in the second week of December.

***** The last time I remember an exchange CEO predicting when a new type of futures contract would start trading was single stock futures, and the CFTC added another week to the predicted approval time.~JJL


Navigating a Breathtaking Level of Global Economic Change
Andrew Ross Sorkin – NY Times
“Confidence” is a curious word. It is derived, in part, from the Latin word “fides” which translates to “faith.” It is a feeling, an inner voice. Just reading the headlines over the past year of what has seemed like a steady parade of crises and potential crises — North Korea, Russian interference in elections in the United States, post-Brexit Europe, hurricane damage — you’d think that any sense of “faith” in the global economy might be shaken, or at least, uncertain. Not so.

***** Confidence and faith go a long way towards a better world.


Millionaire Bankers Feel Sorry for Struggling Millennials
Fergal O’Brien – Bloomberg
Millennials get a lot of press — good and bad — but Credit Suisse reckons they should have our sympathy.

****SD: Can there ever be a story about millennials without a mention of avocado toast? If it’s not that overpriced trend, it’s a story about my generation “killing” businesses and industries from Applebee’s to napkins to fabric softener. (The original copy misspelled “millennial,” too. Ouch.)


Sesame Street goes global to teach kids about money
Chris Taylor – Reuters
Translating money messages to 100 million kids around the world is not a feat for ordinary humans – you need monsters.

***SD: Strangest part – it is not The Count who is leading this charge.


Monday’s Top Three
Yesterday’s top story was Wall Street trading giant Virtu cut staff by half and laid in to a $1.4 billion acquisition – some strong words from Virtu CEO Doug Cifu about the state of KCG upon acquisition. In second was the NFA announces nominations made by the 2017 Nominating Committee. Third went to Matt Levine of Bloomberg with Machines Will Do Shady Things in the Markets Too.


MarketsWiki Page of the Day: Spot Trading
Spot Trading has cut staff recently, the latest Chicago trading firm to shrink its operations amid high technology costs and low volatility in the traditional markets, especially equity options.


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Lead Stories

Spot Trading cuts headcount amid industry troubles
Lynne Marek – Crain’s Chicago Business
Chicago trading firm Spot Trading has cut employees in recent weeks, part of a significant reduction in headcount over the past year, according to people familiar with the firm.

Wall Street Fines Fall During First Year of Trump Administration, Research Shows; Total penalties fell 15.5% last year to about $3.5 billion, the lowest total since 2013, while total cases fell 17%
Dave Michaels – WSJ
Penalties levied by the Securities and Exchange Commission dropped to a four-year low during the latest fiscal year, showing how a more friendly tone from regulators and the transition of political power can yield relief for Wall Street.

Why Mobile Payments Are Still So Hard for J.P. Morgan; The bank has spent $100 million on its latest attempt to capture a market now dominated by technology firms and non banks
Emily Glazer – Bloomberg
Many U.S. companies from startups to Apple Inc. have struggled to gain traction in the fast-growing world of mobile payments. The country’s largest bank is no exception.

Spencer backs compliance hiring start-up; Temple Grange sees booming demand from financial institutions for specialists
Philip Stafford – FT
Michael Spencer is using part of the £200m he pocketed from the sale of shares in interdealer broker TP ICAP to invest in a start-up consultancy that finds compliance specialists for financial markets.

A Hedge Fund That Has a University; Taxing endowments’ investment income would help higher ed.
Thomas Gilbert and Christopher Hrdlicka – WSJ
Whatever you may hear, the Republican tax-reform proposal isn’t an assault on higher education. The House and Senate plans include a new 1.4% excise tax on the net investment income of university endowments, but the levy applies only to private colleges with at least 500 students and endowments of more than $250,000 a student. Schools like Harvard, Yale, Stanford and Princeton—which together hold over $100 billion—are predicting doom. Yet this long-overdue tax will benefit higher education in the end.

Central banks should embrace digital currencies, Axel Weber says; Policymakers risk being left behind with new means of payment, warns UBS chairman
Ralph Atkins and Laura Noonan in Zurich – FT
Central banks should be more open to creating digital versions of their currencies, which could offer significant benefits to society, the chairman of Swiss bank UBS says.

Stock Connect Continues to Grow as Cross-Border Trading Scheme Marks 3rd Anniversary
Stock Connect, the ground-breaking cross-border access scheme connecting the Mainland and Hong Kong stock markets, is marking its third anniversary amid growing two-way capital flows.

FCA to start regulating binary options
Hannah Murphy – FT
The UK’s financial watchdog has announced that it will regulate binary options for the first time from 2018, as it issued a warning to investors on the “high-risk, speculative” nature of those products and new cryptocurrency derivatives.

‘Market manipulation 101’: Wolf of Wall Street-style ‘pump and dump’ scams plague cryptocurrency markets
Oscar Williams-Grut – Business Insider
Cryptocurrency exchanges are rife with “pump and dump” scams that would be illegal in most markets and leave unsuspecting investors at risk of large losses, a Business Insider investigation has found.
Crypto traders are using the secure messaging app Telegram to orchestrate the scams.
Their strategy is to suddenly inflate the price of a cryptocurrency by coordinating a few buyers to act at specific times.

Seeing Around the Bend With the Yield Curve
Ben Eisen – WSJ
Don’t fret about the flat yield curve.
The difference between short-term and long-term Treasury note yields has been falling again recently, with the spread between the two-year and 10-year Treasury yields touching 0.68 percentage point last week, its lowest in a decade, according to Tradeweb. The curve widened a bit to 0.72 percentage point Monday morning.

FIA October SEF Tracker Now Available Online
Total trading volume on SEFs averaged $528.3 billion in notional value per day during the month of October, down 23.0% from the previous month but up 26.1% from October 2016. The decrease in trading volume was driven mainly by a drop in on-SEF trading of interest rate swaps, which was down 23.0% from September 2017 but up 27.2% from October 2016.

First New Core Payments System in the U.S. in more than 40 Years Initiates First Live Payments; BNY Mellon, U.S. Bank, Citi, J.P. Morgan, PNC and SunTrust first banks to use The Clearing House’s new real-time payments system
The Clearing House
Yesterday, The Clearing House (TCH) launched RTP, its real-time payments system, the first new core payments infrastructure in the U.S. in more than 40 years. The new RTP system was designed and built through the collaborative effort of TCH’s 25 owner banks and meets the objectives of the Federal Reserve Faster Payments Task Force. RTP is open to all U.S depository institutions with a goal of reaching ubiquity by 2020.

Bitcoin Bankruptcy Wasn’t Really a Bust; At least one person predicted this. That’s not investment advice.
Matt Levine – Bloomberg
In 2014, Mt. Gox — “Magic: The Gathering Online eXchange,” which grew from that improbable name into at one point the world’s largest bitcoin exchange — suffered the fate of all bitcoin exchanges, and had its bitcoins stolen. Since then everyone has just gotten used to the idea that all bitcoin exchanges get their bitcoins stolen, but at the time it was kind of a big deal; Mt. Gox filed for bankruptcy protection in Japan, where it was based, and customers lost something like 750,000 bitcoins, worth about $500 million at the time.

ISDA Research Note: Asia-Pacific OTC Derivatives Study
Derivatives markets have grown markedly in Asia-Pacific in the past decade, with Hong Kong and Singapore now pre-eminent in regional trading of FX and interest rate derivatives (IRD). Total IRD daily average turnover in AsiaPacific markets increased to $298.3 billion (US dollars unless otherwise specified) in April 2016 from $187.4 billion in April 2007, while the equivalent figure in FX increased to $1.7 trillion from $1 trillion.

Credit Suisse Pays $135 Million to Settle New York FX Probe
Greg Farrell – Bloomberg
Bank front-ran orders on its FX platform, DFS’s Vullo said; Deal calls for outside consultant to oversee forex trading
Credit Suisse AG will pay $135 million to resolve currency-manipulation allegations by New York’s banking regulator, the latest echo from authorities’ long-running scrutiny of foreign-currency trading at big banks.

IEA Sees Shale Surge as Biggest Oil and Gas Boom in History
Grant Smith – Bloomberg
U.S. expansion to beat Saudi oil growth, Soviet Union’s gas; Lower crude prices will help buoy global demand, agency says
The supply surge from U.S. shale oil and gas will beat the biggest gains seen in the history of the industry, the International Energy Agency predicted.

EBA forces Dutch to drop own rules on proprietary trading firms
Toby Sterling – Reuters
Under pressure from the European Banking Authority, the Dutch central bank (DNB) said on Tuesday it would ditch its own capital requirement regime for proprietary trading firms in favour of European rules.

Exchanges, OTC and Clearing

CME Group Announces the Launch of Black Sea Wheat FOB (Platts) and Black Sea Corn FOB (Platts) Futures
Markets Insider
CME Group, the world’s leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace, today announced the launch of Black Sea Wheat FOB (Platts) and Black Sea Corn FOB (Platts) financially settled futures contracts, to begin trading on December 18, 2017, pending all relevant regulatory review periods.

Bolsa de Santiago Market Watch Monthly Newsletter
Bolsa de Santiago
Santiago Exchange Benchmark Index Gained 4.6% in October

Clearstream’s monthly report; Developments in digitization and fintech accelerate innovation
Deutsche Börse
New technological developments in artificial intelligence (AI), big data, robotics, blockchain, and others are driving change in the financial industry, coupled with the rise of fintech companies. This new wave of technology could help overcome barriers to market harmonization while creating new levels of efficiency and mitigating risk. This evolution is expected to continue for the next decade: digitization trends will accelerate and the challenge for established providers is finding the right path for cooperation in new business models and innovative technologies.

Research Report; OTC Clearing Solution for Mainland China’s Increasing Cross-Border Derivatives Trading

Reinet Investments S.C.A. Celebrates Listing on Euronext
Reinet Investments S.C.A. (“Reinet Investments”, ticker symbol: REINA) a Luxembourg-based investment vehicle, began trading today on Euronext Amsterdam.

Fixed Income Futures: Amendment of original term for debt securities for futures contracts on notional debt securities of the Kingdom of Spain (Euro-Bono-Futures)
The Management Board of Eurex Deutschland and the Executive Board of Eurex Zürich AG took the following decision effective 8 December 2017:


Barchart Provides Free Stock Price APIs for Impacted Yahoo Finance API Users
Today, Barchart, a leading provider of market data and financial technology, announces newly updated free market data APIs with North American coverage for historical stocks, futures and forex, and intraday delayed stocks data offering Yahoo users an alternative to their discontinued API service.

The Forks and Fights Behind Bitcoin’s Turbulence
Yuji Nakamura and Olga Kharif – Bloomberg
Bitcoin’s price has always been volatile, but its 29 percent down-and-mostly-back-up over the last few days was a doozy even for it. For those trying to follow along, there was no shortage of bitcoin jargon to wade through — forks, bitcoin cash, Segwit2x and transaction blocks among them.

Nearly a third of people think bitcoin will collapse in the next six months
Courtney Goldsmith – City AM
Bitcoin is more mainstream than ever, but the public is still cautious (Source: Getty)
Although public awareness of bitcoin is now at an all time high, confidence in the cryptocurrency is still low as new research has suggested nearly a third of people think it will collapse in the next six months.

Bitcoin’s Digital Cousin Is Disrupting Cryptocurrencies
Camila Russo – Bloomberg
Bitcoin’s lesser-known cousin, the so-called cash version has disrupted the $200 billion market and over the weekend got close to overtaking ethereum as the second-biggest cryptocurrency by market capitalization.

BlackRock’s Fink says bitcoin thrives on its anonymity
Jennifer Ablan, Jonathan Stempel – Reuters
Bitcoin, whose value has fluctuated significantly this month, remains a “speculative” investment that thrives because of the cryptocurrency’s anonymous nature, BlackRock Inc (BLK.N) Chief Executive Larry Fink said on Monday.


Donald Trump is like a cult leader, says religious studies scholar; ‘I use the word ‘cult’ in its pejorative sense, meaning a deeply insular social group bound together by extreme devotion to a charismatic leader,’ says Reza Aslan
Maya Oppenheim – Independent UK
Donald Trump is akin to a cult leader and his supporters are reminiscent of disciples of a sect, according to a religious studies scholar.

Data Firm Employed by Trump Campaign Sees Star Wane; Cambridge Analytica had its most lucrative year in 2016 campaign; today it doesn’t have a U.S. client and faces criticisms of having failed to deliver on promises
Julie Bykowicz and Rebecca Ballhaus – WSJ
One year after helping President Donald Trump win the election and earning more than $15 million from a dozen political candidates and committees, the data firm Cambridge Analytica doesn’t have any U.S. political clients, according to an analysis of Federal Election Commission records.

Steven Mnuchin Says Trump Won’t Bend on Corporate Tax Rate of 20%; In interview at WSJ’s CEO Council event, Treasury Secretary also weighs in on Fed pick, digital currencies
Nick Timiraos – WSJ
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the Trump administration wouldn’t support tax legislation with a corporate tax rate of more than 20% as part of any future compromise between the House and the Senate.

US justice department considers special counsel to probe Clinton; Trump critics say decision is politicised move to distract attention from Russia investigation
John Murray Brown – FT
The US Department of Justice is considering appointing a special counsel to investigate alleged links between the Clinton Foundation and the sale of a uranium company to Russia, in what Donald Trump’s critics have attacked as a politicised move.


US plan to roll back Dodd-Frank wins bipartisan backers; Key Democrats join effort to cut number of systemically important banks
Alistair Gray in New York – FT
The number of banks deemed systemically important and subjected to extra regulation in the US would drop by two-thirds under plans to roll back Obama-era reforms that have attracted bipartisan support.

Senate’s Crapo Reaches Deal With Democrats on Easing Bank Rules
Elizabeth Dexheimer – Bloomberg
Moderate Democrats on a key Senate panel have reached agreement with the panel’s Republican leader on a proposal for easing regulatory burdens on financial firms, according to an outline obtained by Bloomberg News.

ESMA Clarifies Trading Obligation For Shares Under MiFID II
The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has updated today its Question and Answers (Q&As) regarding the implementation of the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID II). Today’s update clarifies the application of the trading obligation for shares to trade certain instruments on-venue.

Credit Suisse Fined For Being Too Good At Front-Running
By OWEN DAVIS – Dealbreaker
Back in the old days, an ethically challenged trading desk might find it profitable to step in just prior to large client orders, coordinate a plan of attack over phone, and then swarm in to bet in the opposite direction of the big trade. It’s called front-running and it is both bad and illegal.

Official Founding of the International RegTech Association’s Swiss Chapter
International RegTech Association
Today, the International RegTech Association (IRTA) announced the foundation of its Swiss Chapter. The IRTA is a united community of individuals and organizations, with a shared vision to innovate, advance, and influence the future of Regulatory Technology (RegTech) globally.

Libor traders urge Justice Committee to probe SFO’s choice of expert witness
Lucy Burton – Telegraph
The families of three convicted Libor traders have asked the Justice Committee to investigate the Serious Fraud Office’s “selection, retention and oversight” of an expert paid more than £410,000 to testify during the Libor trials.

Credit Suisse fined $135m after FX traders ‘manipulated’ market; Traders found to have used chat rooms to share customer information and engaged in illegal front running activities between 2008 and 2015.
Hayley McDowell – The Trade
Credit Suisse’s foreign exchange (FX) business has been fined $135 million after regulators found traders manipulated prices, shared customer information and engaged in front running client orders.

European Commission launches study on blockchain technology; EU has established a EUR250,000 blockchain study looking at the degree of regulatory intervention the European Commission should take
Hayley McDowell – The Trade
The European Commission has launched a new EUR250,000 study examining blockchain technology in a bid to understand the feasibility of a EU blockchain infrastructure.

ASIC confirms restricted use of ‘independently owned’ in financial services
ASIC has updated regulatory guidance to confirm restrictions, that were announced in June 2017, on the use of terminology that implies independence.

ESMA updates Q&A on MiFIR data reporting
The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has today updated its Questions and Answers (Q&As) regarding data reporting under the Market in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID II) and Regulation (MiFIR).

FINRA Requests Comment on a Proposal to Amend Rule 3110 (Supervision) to Provide Firms the Option to Conduct Remote Inspections of Offices and Locations That Meet Specified Criteria
This Notice seeks comment on a proposal to amend Rule 3110 to add new Supplementary Material .15 to provide firms with the flexibility to conduct remote inspections of “qualifying offices” that meet specified criteria, in lieu of physical, on-site inspections of such offices as currently required under the rule.

Federal Court Orders Arizona Resident Derek Springfield and His Company, Draven, LLC, to Pay over $2.2 Million in Restitution and a Penalty in CFTC Anti-Fraud Action
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) today announced that Judge David G. Campbell of U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona entered a Consent Order against Defendants Derek Springfield and his company, Draven, LLC (Draven), both of Mesa, Arizona finding that they fraudulently solicited and received at least $1.8 million from approximately 112 commodity pool participants in connection with pooled investments in commodity futures and foreign currency exchange (forex). The Order, entered on November 13, 2017, also finds that the Defendants engaged in fraudulent sales practices, misappropriated pool participant funds, and provided false account statements to pool participants.

Remarks of CFTC Chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo to the ISDA Regulators and Industry Forum, Singapore
“Optimizing Swaps Trading and Clearing for Our Economic Aspirations”

SEC fines Wells Fargo Advisors $3.5 million; Firm’s anti-money-laundering unit failed to file timely Suspicious Activity Reports, regulator says
By InvestmentNews
Without admitting or denying the SEC’s findings about its failure to submit timely reports of suspicious money movements, Wells Fargo Advisors has consented to a cease-and-desist order, a censure, and a civil penalty of $3.5 million.

Economists See Few Monetary Policy Changes With Powell Leading Fed; Almost 96% of economists in a WSJ survey said Jerome Powell is qualified to lead the central bank
By David Harrison – WSJ
Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal this month expect that a Federal Reserve led by Jerome Powell would mean little change in monetary policy and a less aggressive approach to financial regulation.

Investing and Trading

Brent Crude Is 550 Million Barrels Long and Suddenly Weakening
Alex Longley – Bloomberg
Speculators are more bullish than ever about Brent crude oil, but one of the market’s best indicators of supply-and-demand has suddenly weakened.
Hedge funds, money managers and other speculators now hold futures contracts equating to a record net 550 million barrels of Brent crude. However, the price difference between the nearest contracts has been narrowing, slipping to a two-month low on Monday. A wider spread had previously attracted investors into the market.

ESG investing blossoms around the globe
Tony Campos – FTSE Russell Blog
Sustainable investing is becoming the new normal as global market participants are increasingly looking to incorporate ESG investment approaches into their investment philosophy and strategies. This growing demand for ESG integration has helped inform investor’s stewardship initiatives, in particular how companies and investors interact in the new global economy. (Stewardship refers to the responsibility companies have to understand their impact on the environment and society.)

Small IPOs Are Dying. That’s Good; The disappearance of small-company stock listings is a sign of efficient markets at work
James Mackintosh – WSJ
The U.S. stock market is eating itself, and nothing could be better for shareholders. There has been a decadelong drought in initial public offerings, fewer companies are listed now than four decades ago, and companies are buying back as many or more shares than they sell.

The Low Volatility Puzzle: Are Investors Complacent?
David Lucca, Daniel Roberts, and Peter Van Tassel – Liberty Street Economics
In recent months, some analysts and policymakers have raised concerns about the unusually low level of stock market volatility. For example, in the June Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) minutes “a few participants expressed concern that subdued market volatility, coupled with a low equity premium, could lead to a buildup of risks to financial stability.” In this post, we review this concern and find the evidence on investor complacency is mixed.

Bond Investors Just Swapped Credit Risk for Duration Risk
Luke Kawa – Bloomberg
Investors spooked by the cracks in the junk-bond market are seeking refuge in higher-quality credit.

Many Alternative Funds Have Disappointed Investors
In early 2014, MainStay Marketfield (MFLDX) was a $21 billion alternatives fund behemoth. Today, it’s a $500 million fund. MainStay took its name off the fund and returned it to the team at Marketfield. Although MainStay proved quite good at selling the fund, it couldn’t prevent the fund from slumping and driving away all those investors who had only recently bought in.

Quality tops US large cap factors in 2017; FTSE Russell and OppenheimerFunds
FTSE Russell Blog
Quality and Value traded places as the lead driver of US large cap equity market performance in 2017, with quality-oriented stocks taking the lead within the Russell 1000 Index through the end of September according to FTSE Russell and OppenheimerFunds.

Gold’s Future Path Looks Distinctly Rocky
Ranjeetha Pakiam – Bloomberg
‘Highly unlikely that gold can thrive,’ SkyBridge Capital says; More normal monetary policy net-negative for gold: Wells Fargo
Gold may be set on a perilous path as central banks withdraw the liquidity punch bowl that has driven stock markets to record highs.

Big money is coming to bitcoin: ex-Fortress executive Novogratz
Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss, Lawrence Delevingne, Ross Kerbe – Reuters
Mike Novogratz, the former macro hedge fund manager at Fortress Investment Group who has joined the mad dash for crypto-currencies, said on Monday that mainstream institutional investors are about six to eight months from adopting bitcoin.


BNY Mellon’s CFO named CEO of newly established clearing business; Thomas Gibb has been appointed CEO of BNY Mellon’s new clearing, markets and client management business amid mass restructure.
Hayley McDowell – The Trade
BNY Mellon’s current chief financial officer has been appointed CEO of its newly established clearing, markets and client management business amid a major restructure of the entire business.

Citigroup invests in software company that monitors staff; Behavox, which looks for signs of wrongdoing, turns its attention to customer relationships
Martin Arnold in London – FT
Citigroup has become the latest investment bank to invest money into groundbreaking artificial intelligence software for monitoring its staff by leading a fundraising round in Behavox, a three-year-old financial technology company based in London.


Chinese asset-backed securities grow like topsy; Investors snap up securitised auto loans issued by Western carmakers
James Kynge – FT
Asset-backed securities still suffer an image hangover in the west from the days of the 2008 financial crisis. But China’s issuance of the financial products is soaring this year as Beijing places a big bet on securitisation as a salve for its huge credit risks. Though only a few years old, the Chinese debt securitisation market — in which pools of debt like mortgages, auto loans and credit-card loans are repackaged and sold to investors — is growing like topsy. Issuance of securitised assets rose 61 per cent in the first half of this year and could climb to $170bn for the full year, according to research by Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

New carbon emissions figures cast a shadow over Paris; Hopes China was on track to cut pollution appear overly optimistic
Pilita Clark – SFT
New figures showing global carbon emissions in 2017 are likely to rise for the first time in four years make a gloomy backdrop to the UN climate talks in Bonn this week that were already looking difficult.

GE says plans new wind farms in Finland, Sweden
Reuters Staff
General Electric’s (GE.N) power generation unit is planning to build new wind farms in Finland and Sweden, a company executive said on Tuesday.

The Real ‘War on Coal’ Is in China; President Trump’s efforts to support U.S. coal are tangential to the real action
Nathaniel Taplin – WSJ
The U.S. is suddenly coal country again, thanks to President Trump. But in the real coal country—the one that sucks up half of global supply every year—demand for the black stuff is poised to deteriorate sharply over the next year. Investors hoping strong global growth and favorable U.S. policies will boost coal prices and stocks should keep focused on China instead.


Crops are rotting in UK fields following Brexit immigration changes
Chase Purdy – Quartz
A county in Britain is asking the government for special permission to circumvent broad immigration laws because of a drain on labor.

U.K. Lawmakers to Vote on Brexit, But Will Face a Stark Choice
Emma Ross-Thomas and Svenja O’Donnell – Bloomberg
Lawmakers’ choice: approve deal or accept chaotic no-deal exit; In the event of no deal, Parliament won’t get a vote
will get a take-it-or-leave-it vote on the final Brexit deal, with their choices limited to accepting the agreement or voting for a chaotic crashing out of the block.

Mike Bloomberg says London will stay Europe’s financial center though ‘dumb’ Brexit will cut growth
Reuters Staff
London will remain Europe’s financial center for the foreseeable future and keep its position alongside New York as one of the world’s dominant trading capitals though Brexit will reduce its growth, billionaire Michael Bloomberg said on Tuesday.


US regulators approve first digital pill with tracking system; Antipsychotic medication’s sensor tells doctors when patients have taken their dose
Sarah Neville, Global Pharmaceuticals Editor – FT
US regulators have approved the world’s first digital medicine — a pill with an inbuilt sensor — opening up a new front in pharmaceuticals and the “internet of things”.

***** Just crazy!

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