The Hedge Funds That Changed the Game

Feb 23, 2024

First Read

Hits & Takes
John Lothian & JLN Staff

The second story in the Leads section from Bloomberg is titled “Why Making Computer Chips Has Become a New Global Arms Race.” The story hit a nerve with me, but misses a key point. While it is very important for the U.S. to bring back production of microchips to the U.S., there is also an arms race to find new ways to use AI in weapons systems. Or, there are lessons being learned from the conflict in Ukraine that are directing future weapons development.

Your average gas-drive car has between 250 to 1000 microchips in it. A javelin missile system has 250 microchips in it. An EV vehicle has upwards of 3000 microchips in it, controlling every aspect of your car’s performance.

Semiconductors are important in various military applications, including communication systems, encryption technologies, radar systems, missile guidance, and electronic warfare. As AI chips get better, all these systems get better. The world gets closer to waves upon waves of drones fighting wars using AI, while also helped by humans.

Meanwhile, Russia’s attack stealth cruise missile Kh-101 uses a total of 35 chips. This missile is also known by its NATO designation AS-23A Kodiak. Many of the chips for Russia’s weapons have come from the U.S. in the past. Thus, there is a microchip arms race to produce chips locally and to improve their capabilities.

R.J. O’Brien & Associates LLC Chairman and CEO Gerald F. Corcoran, was elected to serve a one-year term as chair of the NFA Board of Directors at its February meeting, the NFA announced.

Eurex has developed a YouTube video explaining how trading and clearing for client services works. You can see the video HERE.

The S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average both set record highs yesterday amid the surge in the share price of Nvidia, which rallied over $100 yesterday, adding $273 billion to its market valuation, CBS News reported.

Dr. Niklaus Wirth, a pioneering computer scientist known for creating the Pascal programming language, passed away from heart failure at his Zurich home on January 1, at the age of 89, according to his daughter Tina Wirth. A professor at ETH Zurich in 1970, Wirth developed Pascal, which became the foundation for early Apple computers and software like Skype and Adobe Photoshop. His contributions extended to building one of the first personal computers and facilitating the commercialization of the mouse with a Swiss startup that evolved into Logitech, a leading global provider of computer accessories. In recognition of his significant contributions to computing, the Association for Computing Machinery awarded him the Turing Award in 1984, an honor often likened to the Nobel Prize in the field, The New York Times reported.

Anthony Payne, head of relationship management and market access at the London Metal Exchange, and two friends are running the London Landmarks Half Marathon in April raising money for cancer research. You can support their fundraising efforts by donating at their JustGiving page.

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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A year and a half has passed since the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) was signed into law, and more than two years since the enactment of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA). These two laws represent the largest public investment in clean energy and transportation in US history, designed to incentivize far larger private investment. The Clean Investment Monitor (CIM), launched in September 2023, tracks public and private investment in technologies covered by those bills on a quarterly basis. Its new report, “Clean Investment in 2023: Assessing Progress in Electricity and Transport,” compares progress in 2022 and 2023 in the CIM database to projections from three organizations whose assessments of the potential impact of the IRA and IIJA are widely used by policymakers and stakeholders. These are: Energy Innovation (EI), the REPEAT Project at Princeton University, and Rhodium Group. Review the analysis and download the report HERE. ~SAED

Our most read stories from our previous edition of JLN Options were:
Options Discovery Episode 30: Risk Management For Options Portfolios from John Lothian News.
MSCI and Cboe Global Markets enter into a strategic collaboration from The Trade.
Will a second inflation wave turn the AI boom into a winter of discontent? from the Financial Times. ~JB

Subscribe to the JLN Options Newsletter HERE (it’s free).

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From Open Outcry to Electronic Trading: Andy Tan’s Journey Through the Evolving World of Finance
JohnLothianNews.com

Andy Tan was interviewed by Robert Lothian of John Lothian News at the SGX Center in Singapore for the Open Outcry Traders History Project during FIA Asia Week 2023. Tan shared that he had been fascinated by finance from a young age. However, it was a visit to Singapore’s central business district, known as Raffles Place, that truly captured his attention.

Watch the video »

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MIAX Named Best Trading Platform at the Fund Intelligence; Operations and Services Awards 2024
MIAX
Miami International Holdings, Inc. (MIH), owner of Miami International Securities Exchange, LLC (MIAX), MIAX PEARL, LLC (MIAX Pearl), MIAX Emerald, LLC (MIAX Emerald), MIAX Sapphire, LLC (MIAX Sapphire), Minneapolis Grain Exchange, LLC (MGEXTM), LedgerX LLC (LedgerX), The Bermuda Stock Exchange (BSX), and Dorman Trading, LLC (Dorman Trading), today announced that MIAX has been named the “Best Trading Platform” at the Fund Intelligence Operations and Services Awards 2024. “We are honored to be recognized for the second year in a row as recipients of the award for ‘Best Trading Platform,'” said Thomas P. Gallagher, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of MIAX. “The members of our technology team are regarded as some of the best in the exchange industry and this award is a testament to their talents.”
/jlne.ws/3UKrsox

****** Two years and running for MIAX winning this award. Next up will be Best New Trading Floor!~JJL

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As Trading Frenzies Grip Penny Stocks, Criticism of Nasdaq Grows; Bit Brother, a tiny Chinese crypto company, reached nearly 30% of the U.S. stock market’s volume
Alexander Osipovich – Bloomberg
Nasdaq touts itself as the stock exchange for many of the world’s most iconic and successful companies. It is also the home of Bit Brother. The China-based company focused on selling tea products until it pivoted to cryptocurrencies in 2021. Its shares have fallen more than 99% since the beginning of 2020, after accounting for the three reverse stock splits it has done.
/jlne.ws/49MpLLo

*****The LME has had five times the problem with nickel as Nasdaq has had with penny stocks.~JJL

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Thursday’s Top Three
Thursday was a Bloomberg trifecta. Our top story Thursday was Quant Models Went Haywire as Chinese Stocks Crashed and Rallied, from Bloomberg News. Second was Nvidia Tops Meta Record With $277 Billion Surge in Value, also from Bloomberg. And third was Nikkei Overtakes 1989 High to Hit Record as Global Funds Pour In, also from Bloomberg.

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Lead Stories

The Hedge Funds That Changed the Game; Billions of dollars have poured into multimanager firms in the past few years, but few have managed to match the success of Citadel, Millennium and Point72.
Caitlin McCabe and Peter Rudegeair – The Wall Street Journal
Hedge-fund titans Steve Cohen, Izzy Englander and Ken Griffin are killing it. Their imitators are having trouble keeping up. The big three’s advantage comes from having pioneered what has become the hedge-fund industry’s hottest strategy over the past few years: Known as multimanager firms, they divvy up money across as many as hundreds of specialized investment teams with the aim of producing steadier returns that are uncorrelated to broader markets. Their method turns on its head the original idea of a hedge fund as the strategic vision of just one manager.
/jlne.ws/3T9I6ww

Why Making Computer Chips Has Become a New Global Arms Race
Ian King and Debby Wu – Bloomberg
The incredibly complex, high-stakes business of making semiconductors has always been a battle of corporate giants. Now it’s also a race among governments. These critical bits of technology – also known as integrated circuits or, more commonly, just chips – may be the tiniest yet most exacting products ever manufactured. And because they’re so difficult and costly to produce, there’s a worldwide reliance on just a handful of companies, a dependence that was brought into stark relief by shortages during the pandemic. Access to chips has also become a geopolitical weapon, with the US ratcheting up curbs on exports to China to contain the rise of an economic rival.
/jlne.ws/4bQvilW

FTX Cash Pile of $6.4 Billion Set to Jump With Sale of AI Stake; Bankrupt crypto firm holds nearly 8% of hot startup Anthropic; Judge approves share sale to raise money for creditors
Steven Church – Bloomberg
Bankrupt crypto exchange FTX won bankruptcy court approval to sell its shares in artificial intelligence company Anthropic, potentially adding more than $1 billion to the defunct company’s $6.4 billion cash pile. US Bankruptcy Judge John Dorsey on Thursday said FTX can offload its 8% stake in Anthropic, one of the failed crypto exchange’s most valuable assets.
/jlne.ws/3UQaftZ

The old empires of cocoa, coffee and tea are fragile; Climate change and attacks on ships in the Red Sea are disrupting supplies of drinks from the global south
John Gapper – Financial Times
I popped into Sainsbury’s this week to buy tea bags. It took some time out of my working day, but I had read of potential shortages and my family hates to run out of tea. It turned out to be a false alarm: the supermarket’s shelves were packed with boxes of the stuff, from PG Tips to Twinings and Tetley Tea. Tetley admitted last week that its stock of tea was “much tighter than we would like it to be” because vessels sailing through the Red Sea are being attacked by Houthi rebels protesting the Israel-Hamas war in Gaza. There is little problem of production in India or Kenya, but tea is taking longer to arrive as container ships are diverted away from the Suez Canal and around the Cape of Good Hope.
/jlne.ws/3wzbAei

BP employee’s husband admits insider trading after overhearing deal calls; SEC says man took advantage of working from home to make $1.76mn from shares in company being taken over by oil major
Myles McCormick and Jonathan Wheatley – Financial Times
The husband of a BP employee has pleaded guilty to insider trading after he was accused of illegal share purchases having overheard his wife talking about a deal while working from home. The US Securities and Exchange Commission alleged that Tyler Loudon had made $1.76mn in illegal profits after buying up thousands of shares in TravelCenters of America ahead of its $1.3bn acquisition by BP in February 2023.
/jlne.ws/3T9azmc

Asia-Pacific asset managers face graveyard shift after move to T+1; US decision to shorten trade settlement to one day will leave managers exposed to additional risks
Ernest Chan – Financial Times
Many asset managers in Asia Pacific are currently underprepared for the US reduction in trade settlement times from the current two-day cycle (T+2) to T+1 on May 27, industry experts say. The move could not only leave firms invested in US equities short of funds to complete trades but could also mean staff in Hong Kong will have to complete trade settlements during a shortened daily window between 4am and 7am.
/jlne.ws/3T9IH1d

The SEC approved Bitcoin ETFs. The European Central Bank is not happy; Reguulaaattoooooorrrssss! Mount up.
Louis Ashworth – Financial Times
Grab your popcorn, the European Central Bank’s gone studs-up on the Securities & Exchange Commission. From the ECB blog today: On 10 January, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) approved spot exchange-traded funds (ETFs) for Bitcoin. For disciples, the formal approval confirms that Bitcoin investments are safe and the preceding rally is proof of an unstoppable triumph. We disagree with both claims and reiterate that the fair value of Bitcoin is still zero. For society, a renewed boom-bust cycle of Bitcoin is a dire perspective. And the collateral damage will be massive, including the environmental damage and the ultimate redistribution of wealth at the expense of the less sophisticated.
/jlne.ws/3SNRVih

Head of Russia’s VTB Bank Charged in U.S. With Sanctions Violations; The charges relate to transactions stemming from Andrey Kostin’s opulent lifestyle
Richard Vanderford – The Wall Street Journal
Andrey Kostin, the head of Russia’s state-owned VTB Bank, faces U.S. charges for allegedly violating sanctions. Prosecutors on Thursday unsealed charges in a federal court in New York against Kostin and two others for allegedly participating in schemes to violate sanctions the U.S. imposed on Kostin in 2018.
/jlne.ws/3wpifYK

FTX Drops Demand for $323 Million Over Europe Deal, Agrees to Sell EU Assets; Under a proposed settlement, FTX Europe co-founders Patrick Gruhn and Robin Matzke would buy back the unit’s assets for $32.7 million
Alexander Osipovich – The Wall Street Journal
The FTX estate has agreed to drop a lawsuit that sought to claw back at least $323.5 million from the original owners of the bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange’s European unit. Under a proposed settlement, the two main targets of the lawsuit-FTX Europe co-founders Patrick Gruhn and Robin Matzke-agreed to buy back the unit’s assets for $32.7 million. Details of the proposed settlement emerged in a Thursday court filing from the FTX estate. The deal still needs to be approved by a judge.
/jlne.ws/3T9JC1F

NYC investment firm associate, 27, killed in skiing accident on backcountry slope
David Propper – NY Post
A 27-year-old New York City investment firm associate was killed in a tragic skiing accident Tuesday on a backcountry slope near a popular Vermont resort, authorities said. The body of Brooks Ralph was discovered by search crews around midnight – five hours after he was reported missing at Stowe Mountain Resort, local officials said.He was found in a wooded, out-of-bounds area, Stowe police said. The young man’s body was brought to the state’s chief medical examiner’s office to determine cause of death, but a preliminary probe indicates his death was accidental, police said Wednesday. Ralph lived in Cold Spring in Putnam County and worked at Big Apple independent investment firm Hunter Point Capital as an associate.
/jlne.ws/48qZWQ3

MarketAxess relaunches Mid-X offering in Europe; Mid-X will provide full anonymity when matching session at the mid-point price and is set to limit information leakage with size only revealed when trades are complete.
Wesley Bray – The Trade
MarketAxess has re-launched Mid-X in Europe, providing anonymous matching sessions at the mid-point price within the region. Mid-X leverages the MarketAxess Open Trading network which offers access to a pool of sell-side and ETF liquidity to maximise matching opportunities.
/jlne.ws/49LfDCJ

Nvidia Surpasses $2 Trillion Valuation on Insatiable AI Chip Demand; Chips that perform artificial-intelligence calculations are so valuable that they are delivered in armored cars
Asa Fitch – The Wall Street Journal
It took Nvidia 24 years as a public company for its valuation to reach the rarefied air of $1 trillion. Thanks to the chip maker’s role in powering the AI revolution, a second trillion took eight months. The company’s market capitalization topped $2 trillion in Friday morning trading and is behind only Microsoft and Apple.
/jlne.ws/3T8mwIJ

Nvidia Shares Electrify Markets Around the Globe; The S&P 500, Stoxx Europe 600 and Nikkei all notched new highs
Gunjan Banerji – The Wall Street Journal
A record jump in Nvidia shares turbocharged excitement about artificial intelligence Thursday, jolting markets around the world and powering major indexes on three continents to all-time highs. The chip manufacturer’s shares surged 16% to $785.38-their highest level since the company started trading in 1999-a day after it turned in another quarter of blockbuster results. Its $277 billion gain in market value, more than what mobile-phone-chip maker Qualcomm is currently worth, marked the largest one-day market-cap gain on record for a U.S. company.
/jlne.ws/3T6VuSc

Singapore Exchange boss Loh Boon Chye: ‘The international marketplace is our marketplace’; While other exchanges are diversifying away from trading fees, the Singapore Exchange head says its strategy is to diversify through geography
Jeremy Chan – Financial News
The paradigm of Asian financial markets has recently been turned on its head. The Chinese stock market, which has tracked the country’s economic rise, is undergoing an unprecedented slump. Meanwhile, the Japanese stock market has seen huge gains, with the Nikkei closing in on the all-time high it set in 1989. Loh Boon Chye, chief executive of the Singapore Exchange Group, says the conclusion outside investors should draw from this is the region is not monolithic.
/jlne.ws/4bR1fKX

Oil Market Gets a Russian Lesson: Sell on the Sound of Cannons; Amid ongoing attacks on a vital energy shipping corridor, the oil price is stuck in peacetime
Jinjoo Lee and Carol Ryan – The Wall Street Journal
It has been two years since Russia invaded Ukraine and about four months since Palestinian militant group Hamas attacked Israel. Sparks from these wars have recently spread to an oil refinery in Russia and to tankers crossing the Red Sea. Meanwhile, clashes between Israel and Lebanon threaten to boil over to another full-blown war. Yet the price of oil, a commodity that sits in the crosshairs of these conflicts, is around 12% lower than on the eve of Russia’s invasion.
/jlne.ws/3I7Td2K

The limits of splitting UK and EU financial services; London and Brussels should collaborate more on regulation
The editorial board – Financial Times
The European Central Bank may be grappling with two types of inflation: that of prices – and also, allegedly, of job titles. In December, a former Morgan Stanley banker claimed that he was instructed by seniors to take a “head of loan trading” designation, in name only, to trick the regulator into believing the bank had moved top staff to the EU to comply with post-Brexit rules. The bank disputes the claim, but analysts suspect there are other such cases among global investment banks.
/jlne.ws/3I8P3Ys

Women in Digital Assets Forum 2024 Announces Keynote Speaker Anthony Scaramucci!
TabbFORUM & Transformational Strategies
Join us at our second annual event in Stamford, CT as Women in Digital Assets Forum bring together esteemed members of the digital asset’s community, and passionate advocates for gender diversity. As innovation continues to resonate in the United States with the approval of a spot Bitcoin ETF and globally in this ever-evolving landscape of digital assets, it is important that we pause and recognize the incredible contributions of women in shaping the future of this dynamic industry.
Register HERE. https://jlne.ws/3SWc3iy
Tuesday, June 25 · 12:30 – 6:30pm EDT

Bundesbank burns through more than EUR20bn to cover huge losses; German central bank uses up EUR19.2bn of provisions it built up to cover financial risks to absorb deficit
Martin Arnold – Financial Times
The German central bank has burnt through the entire EUR19.2bn of provisions it built up to cover financial risks as well as most of its EUR3.1bn reserves to absorb the huge losses it made last year due to higher interest costs. The Bundesbank warned it expected to make another “significant” loss this year, exceeding the EUR700mn of remaining reserves, as it reported on Thursday that it would have made a EUR21.6bn loss if it had not drawn down the funds set aside to cover financial risks.
/jlne.ws/3V8VYJ5

Fireside Friday with… Liquidnet’s Gareth Exton; The TRADE catches up with Gareth Exton, head of execution and quantitative services EMEA at Liquidnet, to discuss must watch areas for 2024, the challenges associated with accessing liquidity, and how the industry can work together to promote a more optimal ecosystem.
Wesley Bray – The Trade
What are the key challenges associated with accessing liquidity right now?
Through conversations with buy-side members, we continue to receive feedback that there are two main challenges traders are facing. The first is the continued fragmentation of liquidity across multiple venue types, including some new alternative sources such as direct interaction with market makers.
/jlne.ws/49FJ6he

Ukraine Invasion

Russia procures tank parts from Japan and Taiwan via China; Documents show company in Shenzhen used to evade U.S., U.K. sanctions
Takayuki Tanaka And Yusuke Hinata – Nikkei
A Russian arms maker is importing components for precision instruments made in Japan and Taiwan essential to tank production as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine continues, Nikkei has learned. According to information obtained by Nikkei, a person connected to the government of Belarus, an ally of Russia, set up a company in China after February 2022, when the full-scale invasion began, and the Russian arms maker has continued to import parts via the company. The information reveals that sanctions aimed at Russia’s munitions industry are not functioning effectively, due to trades through a third country. U.S. and British authorities are aware of the situation and are expected to tighten the sanctions.
/jlne.ws/4bOAdnr

Kherson was liberated over a year ago. Now the residents who returned are battered by Russia’s advancing forces
Nick Paton Walsh, Anna-Maja Rappard, Kosta Gak and Brice Laine – CNN
Kherson, its streets peppered with broken glass and an endless storm of artillery on its horizon, feels as if it is under remote occupation. Two years ago, it became the first major Ukrainian city to fall, as Russians forces swept in from Crimea. It was liberated by Kyiv’s forces nine months later. Yet, as the war enters its third year, residents describe the shelling from Russian forces under a mile away across the Dnipro River as the worst yet.
/jlne.ws/3I96TdJ

Russian drone strike on Ukrainian regions kills four, Kyiv says
Reuters
Russian drone and missile attacks on Ukrainian regions in the south and east killed four people overnight and damaged residential and commercial buildings, officials said on Friday. Ukrainian air defences shot down 23 out of 31 Russian-launched drones over five regions, the air force said.
/jlne.ws/4bRkZ1h

How Trump Turned Conservatives Against Helping Ukraine; GOP’s transformation is on full display at CPAC gathering: ‘The war is the fault of the U.S.’
Molly Ball – The Wall Street Journal
Billions in potential American aid to Ukraine is stuck in monthslong limbo on Capitol Hill, and to the Trump-loving partisans attending this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference, that’s exactly as it should be. “I don’t want any more funding for Ukraine. That’s very important to me,” said Sue Errera, a 70-year-old retired jeweler from Seneca, Pa. “We need to take care of ourselves first. I don’t agree with Putin, he’s definitely a dictator, but I don’t think he’s causing all the problems.”
/jlne.ws/4bLjiCq

In third year of war, why Ukraine’s fate hinges on West
Andrew Gray – Reuters
As the war in Ukraine enters its third year, the conflict will be determined not just on the battlefield but also in Western capitals and other places far from the front lines. With Ukrainian forces on the back foot, short of ammunition and forced to retreat in some areas, Kyiv’s ability to repel Russia’s invasion depends heavily on Western military, financial and political backing.
/jlne.ws/49MOnnA

Russia’s Ukraine Resurgence Shows It’s Often Down But Never Out; The nation’s record is one of shattering defeats followed by remarkably rapid resurgences. Win or lose the war, it will soon find a way to challenge the democratic world again.
Hal Brands – Bloomberg
Year one of Vladimir Putin’s vicious war in Ukraine saw Russia fall flat on its face. Year two saw it get back on its feet. As we enter year three, the momentum is shifting in Moscow’s favor; Russia could still win a war it once appeared to be losing in humiliating style. American officials declared, back in 2022, that Moscow had already suffered a bruising defeat. Today, the Russian president seems smugly confident his country could eke out a victory, albeit at a brutally high price. This would be a shocking turn of events for those who wrote off Russian power after Putin’s armies were routed outside Kyiv in 2022. It would be a catastrophe for Ukraine. Yet it wouldn’t be all that surprising, viewed against the longer sweep of Russian history.
/jlne.ws/49rueU2

Biden issues new sanctions on Russia in response to Navalny death; Measures come on the eve of two-year anniversary of full-scale invasion of Ukraine
Felicia Schwartz – Financial Times
The US has sanctioned more than 500 Russian targets in response to the death of opposition activist Alexei Navalny and on the eve of the two-year anniversary of the full-scale invasion of Ukraine. The measures, announced by US President Joe Biden on Friday, are aimed at punishing human rights violators and slowing Vladimir Putin’s war machine.
/jlne.ws/48u5yZY

Israel/Palestine Conflict

Israel unveils plan for complete postwar control of Gaza; Benjamin Netanyahu’s document on vision for Palestinian state will be at odds with US aims
Mehul Srivastava and Neri Zilber and Heba Saleh – Financial times
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has finally unveiled Israel’s plans for Gaza after hostilities end in the enclave, submitting to his war cabinet a formal proposal that directly contradicts the objectives of the US. The one-page document, released overnight by his office, makes no mention of any role for the Palestinian Authority, the West Bank-based rival to Hamas that the Biden administration wants to see take over control, and rejects unilateral international steps towards recognition of a Palestinian state.
/jlne.ws/3T9HLdd

Exchanges, OTC and Clearing

SGX RegCo proposes rule changes to aid company restructuring
Navene Elangovan – The Business Times
Financially distressed companies undergoing restructuring may dispose of significant assets without the approval of shareholders and have their trading suspension waived under “exceptional circumstances”. That’s if proposed changes by the Singapore bourse’s regulatory arm are implemented. The proposals by Singapore Exchange Regulation (SGX RegCo) are part of efforts to “smoothen and speed up” the restructuring of financially distressed companies, said Tan Boon Gin, the regulator’s chief executive officer.
/jlne.ws/49NQp6T

Performance Bond Requirements: Agriculture, Energy, Equity, FX, Interest Rate and Cryptocurrency Margins – Effective February 23, 2024
CME Group
As per the normal review of market volatility to ensure adequate collateral coverage, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc., Clearing House Risk Management staff approved the performance bond requirements for the following products listed in the advisory at the link below. The rates will be effective after the close of business on February 23, 2024.

Euronext distinguishes Portuguese capital market participants
Euronext
Euronext, the leading pan-European infrastructure market, today announced the list of nominees and winners of the 13th edition of the Euronext Lisbon Awards. Created in 2011, the Euronext Lisbon Awards distinguish issuers, financial intermediaries, and other institutions and people who, in the year prior to the award, stood out in the capital market.
/jlne.ws/48mzmri

HKEX To Include Currency Futures And Options In Derivatives Holiday Trading From 29 March
Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited
Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited (HKEX) is pleased to announce today (Friday) the inclusion of HKEX’s currency futures and options to the list of eligible products for Derivatives Holiday Trading, effective 29 March 2024. HKEX Group Head of Emerging Business and FIC Glenda So said: “We are delighted to be announcing the expansion of our Derivatives Holiday Trading offering to include our highly-popular currency futures and options products, supporting investors’ FX risk management needs during Hong Kong holidays.”
/jlne.ws/42MGLix

Subject: SPAN Margin Parameters
London Metal Exchange
LME Clear Members are advised that new SPAN1 margin parameters have been set, as marked in the SPAN Margin Parameter spreadsheet located here https://www.lme.com/en/Clearing/Risk-management/Margin-parameter-files. The changes will be made effective at close of business 29th February 2024 and will be reflected in SPS margin calls on the morning of 1st March 2024. Members are advised that Secondary SPAN margin parameters will be updated from the morning of 28th February 2024 with the new parameters as detailed in this circular.
/www.lme.com/en/News

Changes in Nifty Fixed Income indices
National Stock Exchange of India
The Index Maintenance Sub-Committee (Debt) of NSE Indices Limited has decided to make changes as listed hereunder. These changes shall become effective from February 28, 2024. 1. Nifty CPSE Bond Plus SDL Sep 2024 50:50 index On December 21, 2023, the Index Maintenance Sub-Committee (Debt) had announced exclusion from Nifty CPSE Bond Plus SDL Sep 2024 50:50 index on account of scheduled redemption of bond during the quarter ending March 2024.
/jlne.ws/3IaKYmz

Opening remarks by Tan Boon Gin, CEO, SGX RegCo, at the media briefing on the consultation on rule changes to aid company restructuring
SGX
Good morning everyone. Restructuring can be a fraught topic because once a company enters restructuring, it usually means there is not enough money to go around, and for the company to continue, a compromise must be reached between creditors and shareholders. That is what Singapore’s Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution Act 2018, or IRDA seeks to do, to strike a balance between shareholders and creditors to give the company the best chance of success at restructuring.
/jlne.ws/3SXDjgC

SGX RegCo proposes rule changes to aid company restructuring
SGX
Singapore Exchange Regulation (SGX RegCo) is proposing rule changes aimed at facilitating the restructuring process for SGX-listed companies under Singapore’s Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution Act 2018 (IRDA). In summary, the changes, if implemented, will enable issuers to restructure more efficiently and lessen the regulatory burden when they are trying to manage their financial affairs and meet time-sensitive milestones. For instance, SGX RegCo is proposing that shareholders need not vote on a major disposal undertaken as part of judicial management or liquidation of the issuer under IRDA. This will align our rules with IRDA, as well as allow for the quicker realisation of assets.
/jlne.ws/49wghEE

Fintech

Imandra Gains Significant Traction across European Exchanges
Imandra
Imandra, the AI startup pioneering applications of automated reasoning for financial and safety-critical software systems, announces significant traction across the European exchange landscape. Imandra’s flagship product, Imandra Markets, provides exchanges and trading venues with a suite of AI-powered services for designing, testing, calibrating, and auditing complex financial systems to improve business intelligence and system resiliency. Today, Imandra Markets supervises exchange technology responsible for approximately 25% of all European equities trading. Imandra Markets digitises venue design, creating ‘digital twins’ powered by automated reasoning AI to ensure compliance and correct implementation. This helps exchanges and trading venues test and improve their system operational resiliency and meet their regulatory obligations to maintain the orderly function of the markets.
/jlne.ws/3wuY2Rd

Imandra’s ‘digital twin’ exchange solution allows firms to test resilience
Alex Pugh – Best Execution, MarketsMedia Group
AI start-up Imandra has seen its Imandra Markets product – which creates ‘digital twins’ of exchanges to allow for testing – gain traction among European exchanges, driven largely by regulatory and commercial concerns. Paul Brennan, chief strategy officer at Imandra, spoke to BEST EXECUTION about how the firm tests these digital twins, what market pressures have led to its development, and where the technology could be used in other industries.
/jlne.ws/3wsrCGY

What’s Behind Trading Technologies’ Agreement to Acquire ATEO?
A-Team Insight Blog
In a significant move that will augment its post-trade services, Trading Technologies International, Inc. (TT), the global capital markets technology platform provider, recently agreed to acquire ATEO SAS, specialists in post-trade solutions for listed derivatives. The acquisition marks a pivotal step for TT in extending its capabilities into clearing and other essential middle-office technologies and services. This is the latest in a string of acquisitions by TT over the last two years, including RCM-X, a provider of algorithmic execution strategies and quantitative trading products, fixed income solutions provider AxeTrading, and transaction cost analysis (TCA) specialists Abel Noser Solutions.
/jlne.ws/3OTXqef

XTX Markets announces launch of new machine learning division ‘XTY Labs’ headed by Dr. Atlas Wang
XTX Markets. XTX Markets, a leading algorithmic trading company, is excited to announce the launch of XTY Labs, a new machine learning division to be headed by newly appointed Research Director, Dr. Atlas Wang. XTY Labs is set to become a hub for elite machine learning researchers and will be home to the new ‘XTY Labs AI Residency Program’, offering researchers short-term AI residency contracts ranging from 6-12 months.
/jlne.ws/49nsE5z

UK Tech Boss Didn’t Disclose £1.5 Million Share Trades; British software firm reveals undisclosed trades in filing; Neil Murphy’s shock resignation sent shares tumbling
Joe Easton – Bloomberg
Bytes Technology Group Plc’s former chief executive traded shares worth around £1.5 million ($1.9 million) without disclosing the transactions, the UK company revealed following his resignation this week. Neil Murphy bought 313,741 shares following the company’s 2020 initial public offering and sold them last year, Bytes said in a statement Friday. They were bought at a volume-weighted average price of 479.23 pence per share and sold at 483.46 pence apiece, the statement said, suggesting a nominal profit of about £13,000 was made, excluding costs.
/jlne.ws/4bP9Jm0

Trumid appoints ex-Neptune CTO to head up Attributed Trading offering
Claudia Preece – The Trade
/jlne.ws/3T8kpEN

Trumid appoints ex-Neptune CTO to head up Attributed Trading offering
Claudia Preece – The Trade
/jlne.ws/3T8kpEN

U.S. Justice Department Hires First Chief Artificial Intelligence Officer
Mengqi Sun – The Wall Street Journal
/jlne.ws/48rd6MP

Reddit has struck a $60m deal with Google that lets the search giant train AI models on its posts
David Hamilton – Associated Press
/jlne.ws/3US5O1M

The ‘mind-bending’ bionic arm powered by AI
Paul Carter – BBC
/jlne.ws/3uJ9UOZ

Intel to manufacture chips for Microsoft as AI drives demand
Michael Acton – Financial Times
/jlne.ws/49q4lUD

Cybersecurity

An online dump of Chinese hacking documents offers a rare window into pervasive state surveillance
Frank Bajak and Dave King – Associated Press
Chinese police are investigating an unauthorized and highly unusual online dump of documents from a private security contractor linked to the nation’s top policing agency and other parts of its government – a trove that catalogs apparent hacking activity and tools to spy on both Chinese and foreigners. Among the apparent targets of tools provided by the impacted company, I-Soon: ethnicities and dissidents in parts of China that have seen significant anti-government protests, such as Hong Kong or the heavily Muslim region of Xinjiang in China’s far west.
/jlne.ws/3OTin8W

Cyberattacks are the No. 1 worry for business leaders-and AI may be able to help
Rachyl Jones – Fortune
Executives consider cyberattacks the top threat to their companies, and artificial intelligence only exacerbates the risk by helping hackers infiltrate computer systems more quickly and effectively. But AI can also help protect businesses. “It’s important for companies to look for these next-generation technologies to identify and prevent attacks using things like AI,” George Kurtz, CEO of cybersecurity company CrowdStrike, told Fortune.
/jlne.ws/48sSaVX

Cryptocurrencies

Coinbase Adds DOT, XRP, DOGE to Its Futures Market Lineup; Coinbase adds DOT, XRP, and DOGE to the futures market, showcasing its expansion and global trading milestone achievements.
Maxwell Mutuma – Coingame.com
Coinbase, a leading cryptocurrency exchange, has announced the addition of Polkadot (DOT), XRP, and Dogecoin (DOGE) to its lineup of perpetual futures contracts. This expansion is available on Coinbase International Exchange and Coinbase Advanced trading platforms. The move signifies Coinbase’s ongoing efforts to diversify its trading options and cater to a broader audience of international traders. The inclusion of these cryptocurrencies into the futures market underscores the growing demand for more varied investment products in the digital asset space.
/jlne.ws/49HkLI2

Bitcoin ETFs test investor commitment to gold-backed paper
Ashitha Shivaprasad and Manya Saini – Reuters
A surge of interest in bitcoin exchange-traded funds is prompting some investors to swap out holdings in gold-backed ETFs, although analysts and fund managers said they are unlikely to challenge bullion longer term. Spot bitcoin ETFs could offer investors looking to hedge against inflation an alternative to gold. ETFs track an index, commodities, bonds or a basket of assets like an index fund.
/jlne.ws/3UMuNU9

Archax Launches Yield-generating Stablecoin Service
Facilitating the Movement of Stablecoin Assets into Tokenised, Regulated, Yield-Bearing Holdings; For the attention of professional investors only, capital at risk.
Archax
Archax, the only FCA-regulated digital asset exchange, broker, and custodian, today announced the introduction of its Stablecoin Yield Service. This service enables individuals with assets in stablecoins to transition them into yield-generating instruments, such as regulated Money Market Funds (MMFs), which are also available in tokenised form.
/jlne.ws/434V16x

Politics

Top House Republican says Biden admin abusing power to target bitcoin miners; Bitcoin miners are responsible for powering the network behind the world’s largest digital currency
Eleanor Terrett – FOX Business
In a letter sent this week to the Office of Management and Budget, the Minnesota Republican demanded answers from the agency about its recent approval of an emergency request from the Energy Department’s analytical agency – the Energy Information Administration – for 82 bitcoin mining firms to share proprietary information regarding their energy consumption. The OMB is responsible for signing off on information collection requests from federal agencies.
/jlne.ws/3STa4v0

Victims of second Post Office IT scandal to receive compensation, says minister; The claims stem from alleged wrongful prosecutions of sub-postmasters in the 1990s, prior to the Horizon scandal
Athena Stavrou – Independent
Victims of a second Post Office IT scandal are set to receive compensation, a government minister has said. The claims stem from alleged wrongful prosecutions of sub-postmasters in the 1990s, prior to the Horizon scandal that captured the attention of the nation in recent weeks. Former post office staff have spoken out after the accounting software used, called Capture, was prone to errors and regularly left them with shortfalls when they balanced their books.
/jlne.ws/49LTnbJ

Hungary to Allow Sweden Into NATO Following Jet Fighter Deal; Parliament in Budapest set to ratify Swedish bid NATO Monday; Hungary signs deal to expand its Gripen fighter fleet to 18
Marton Kasnyik and Niclas Rolander – Bloomberg
Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban confirmed that his country will remove the last obstacle to Sweden’s NATO accession after the Nordic country agreed to sell Gripen jet fighters to Budapest. The Hungarian parliament will take the “necessary decisions” to ratify the Nordic country’s NATO accession early next week, Orban said at a press conference with his Swedish counterpart Ulf Kristersson in the Hungarian capital on Friday.
/jlne.ws/49Mpp7y

Western governments urged to swap spies for Russia’s political prisoners; Jailed opposition activists fear they will be killed by Vladimir Putin’s regime
Max Seddon and Anastasia Stognei – Financial Times
The death of Alexei Navalny has raised alarm among other Russian political prisoners, who fear they could meet a similar fate for challenging the regime of Vladimir Putin. Activists say Navalny’s death in a remote Arctic prison colony, which his wife Yulia has blamed on the Russian president, has raised the stakes for other jailed dissidents, including those imprisoned under the Kremlin’s repressive laws against criticising the full-scale invasion of Ukraine.
/jlne.ws/3UWjsRz

Philippines Finance Chief Pushes for Stock Transaction Tax Cut
Ditas Lopez – Bloomberg News
Philippines’ Department of Finance says its head, Ralph Recto, is pushing for capital market reforms, including lower stock transaction tax and simplified tax structure on financial products, to attract more investors.
/jlne.ws/4bKeZap

Regulation

Singapore Probes Remittance Firm on Suspected Fraudulent Trading; Samlit plans to shut, give up payment services license; MAS, police start probe into director, compliance manager
David Ramli – Bloomberg
Singapore-based remittance firm Samlit Moneychanger Pte. is being investigated for offenses including suspected fraudulent trading, marking the most significant development yet in a fund-freeze scandal in the city-state. A probe into a 43-year-old woman and 34-year-old man, who are respectively the director and compliance manager of Samlit, has started Friday, according to a joint statement by the Monetary Authority of Singapore and the city-state’s police.
/jlne.ws/3uGnrqB

SEC Expands Regulatory Oversight of Private Fund Advisers – Amendments to Form PF
Jon Jurva, Emily Lewis, Ashley Tomillo – ArentFox Schiff via JD Supra
On February 8, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) along with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) jointly adopted amendments to Form PF. The amendments amount to an increase in the SEC’s already robust regulatory oversight of private fund advisers.
/jlne.ws/3wrX73V

Kraken moves to dismiss SEC lawsuit, citing retaliation from ‘a politically compromised agency’
Leo Schwartz – Fortune
On Thursday, the crypto exchange Kraken filed a motion to dismiss a November lawsuit from the Securities and Exchange Commission that accuses the U.S.-based firm of failing to register with the agency and commingling customer funds.
/jlne.ws/3UNv2Oz

UK imposes sanctions on Dutch oil trader over Russia links; Treasury alleges Niels Troost benefited from ‘supporting the government of Russia’ via Paramount SA
David Sheppard and Tom Wilson – Financial Times
The UK has imposed sanctions on Dutch oil trader Niels Troost and his Swiss-based operation Paramount Energy & Commodities SA, whose entanglement with the Russian oil trade was first exposed by the Financial Times. Troost is the highest-profile figure in energy trading, outside of Russian oligarchs and officials, to be targeted directly by western sanctions. The UK Treasury said on Thursday it was imposing sanctions because of his association with Paramount SA which has been “involved in obtaining a benefit from or supporting the government of Russia”.
/jlne.ws/3T6WqWI

Nigeria blocks access to crypto exchanges in effort to curb currency slide; Local consumers given only restricted access to markets like Binance and Coinbase
Aanu Adeoye and Scott Chipolina – Financial Times
Authorities in Nigeria have blocked access to some of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges as the government tries to crack down on currency speculation while the naira tumbles to record lows. The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the telecoms regulator, late on Wednesday ordered telecoms companies to restrict consumer access to the websites of companies like Binance, Coinbase and Kraken, according to people familiar with the matter. On Thursday consumers had only intermittent access to some sites.
/jlne.ws/49FsuXH

CFTC Staff Issues No-Action Letter Regarding Pre-Trade Mid-Market Mark for Certain Interest Rate Swaps Referencing SOFR
CFTC
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s Market Participants Division (MPD) today issued a no-action letter in relation to the requirement in Regulation 23.431 that swap dealers and major swap participants (swap entities) disclose to certain counterparties the Pre-Trade Mid-Market Mark (PTMMM) of a swap.
/jlne.ws/3ux767G

Objection of Commissioner Christy Goldsmith Romero to No-Action Letter that Rolls Back Dodd-Frank Act Reforms and Removes Counterparty Protections
CFTC
I object to the CFTC staff issuing a no-action letter rolling back critical Dodd-Frank Act reforms intended to address causes of the 2008 financial crisis. The Dodd-Frank Act directed the Commission to impose business conduct standards on swap dealers to reverse the caveat emptor nature of pre-crisis swaps markets. These business conduct rules promulgated by the Commission in 2012 include that swap dealers shall disclose to a potential counterparty material information that reasonably allows the counterparty to assess “the material incentives and conflicts of interest” the swap dealer may have before entering into a swap. Those disclosures “shall include…the mid-market mark of the swap.”[1]
/jlne.ws/49EAuIt

SEC Updates Ethics Rules Governing Securities Trading by Agency Personnel
SEC
The Securities and Exchange Commission today adopted amendments to its ethics rules to strengthen and modernize its ethics compliance program. The amendments update the SEC’s existing, robust ethics requirements that govern the securities holdings and transactions of all agency employees, their spouses, and minor children. The rule was adopted jointly with the Office of Government Ethics.
/jlne.ws/3OUZCC7

SEC Charges Husband of Energy Company Manager with Insider Trading
Spouse purchased stock using non-public information about planned merger
SEC
The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged Tyler Loudon of Houston, Texas, with insider trading ahead of a February 2023 announcement that London-based oil and gas company BP p.l.c. agreed to acquire TravelCenters of America Inc., a full-service truck stop and travel center company headquartered in Ohio. Loudon allegedly made $1.76 million in illegal profits from his trading.
/jlne.ws/3SXvJTc

Investing and Trading

Europe’s Stoxx 600 Hits Record High to Join US, Japan Equities
Sagarika Jaisinghani – Bloomberg
Europe’s benchmark index hit a record on Thursday, joining US and Japanese equities in reaching all-time highs, as an upbeat earnings report by Nvidia Corp. cemented optimism about a boom in artificial intelligence. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index closed 0.8% higher, surpassing the closing peak reached in January 2022. Technology stocks jumped, tracking a rally in the US tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 after the bullish sales forecast by Nvidia, the world’s most valuable chipmaker.
/jlne.ws/3OUfbtM

Fifth anniversary of STOXX ESG derivatives sees broadening innovation, adoption
STOXX
On February 18, 2019, Eurex launched its ESG index derivatives segment with three STOXX-linked products, forging a market and new partnership venue between both firms that have since grown in size and innovation. The advent of ESG derivatives marked an important milestone for investors who need to observe responsible mandates while managing their portfolios’ risk and flows. With the market for sustainable funds continuing to grow, and more regulation driving ESG disclosure and flows, listed and centrally-cleared derivatives will play an increasingly large role for investors.
/jlne.ws/3T5Vi5I

Bond Traders Brace for Another US Selloff, Unwind Bullish Bets; Brisk demand for options targeting 10-year yield over 4.5%; New bond short positions appeared to build after Friday’s PPI
Edward Bolingbroke – Bloomberg
Bond traders are bracing for the risk of a renewed selloff, driving a surge of trading in options targeting higher yields and prompting investors to unwind long Treasury positions by the most in nearly two years.The trend gained momentum this week, when there was strong demand for contracts wagering that 10-year yields will breach 4.5%, a level they haven’t exceeded since November. Tuesday’s flows included a position targeting yields as high as 4.85% while other flows last week included positions targeting 4.55% and 4.60%. The 10-year yield was just over 4.3% late Wednesday. The positioning comes after the bond market was hit by a fresh round of losses this year after sticky inflation and still strong growth drove traders to dial back estimates for how deeply the Federal Reserve will lower interest rates this year.
/jlne.ws/3UQrMBZ

Reddit users made meme-stock prices go crazy – now they could do the same with Reddit’s own stock IPO
Meghan Morris – Business Insider
GameStop, AMC, and other companies saw huge swings in their stock prices starting in 2021, thanks to chatter on the social-media platform Reddit. As Reddit gears up for its much-anticipated initial public offering next month, it’s publicly cautioning investors that meme-stock mania – often fanned on Reddit’s own “r/wallstreetbets” forum – could cause volatility in its own stock once it starts trading.
/jlne.ws/3SHLUUc

Yield-Crazed Day Traders Pony Up for ‘169%’ Option-Income ETFs; Assets in single-name option products rise above $1.7 billion; Critics say the investment case of the trade is hard to fathom
Denitsa Tsekova and Katie Greifeld – Bloomberg
How many Wall Street buzzwords can you fit into one security? The limit is being tested by a new breed of options-fueled exchange-traded funds making inroads with the retail crowd. Nosebleed yields. Elevated volatility. Single-stock ETFs. They all come together in a parlay of complex risk taking marketed with mundane labels like the “option income strategy,” with around $1.7 billion flowing into such products since catching on last year. Issuers are planning more. Skeptics wonder if buyers know what they’re getting into.
/jlne.ws/42NgsZB

Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance

US landowners sue to force oil company clean-up of abandoned wells
Jamie Smyth – Financial Times
Land owners are suing a Denver-based oil and gas company, alleging it systematically avoided cleaning up old operations, in a case that spotlights the prospect of US taxpayers shouldering billions of dollars of costs to remediate pollution from wells previously owned by energy majors. The lawsuit addresses the problem of abandoned wells, which can leak toxic chemicals into the air, contaminate groundwater and emit methane gas unless they are plugged with cement. Less than half of the nation’s estimated 3.7mn abandoned wells have been plugged, according to US government estimates.
/jlne.ws/3ULUX9x

DEI officers are overloaded and on the outs
Jack Grieve – Crain’s Chicago Business
Just two years ago, the role of chief diversity and inclusion officer was the single fastest-growing position in the C-suite. Now, many of those same officers are leaving their jobs. Appointing a director-level position in charge of diversity, equity and inclusion, or DEI, initiatives had become a go-to symbol of an organization’s commitment to diversity in the workplace after the police killing of George Floyd and the nationwide racial reckoning that followed.
/jlne.ws/49HPrc1

Climate investor group seeks to shore up support after US exits
Simon Jessop and Ross Kerber – Reuters
Principles for Responsible Investment writes to members; Says Climate Action 100+ not in breach of laws. Follows exit of several large US members last week. The world’s biggest climate investor group has told members its approach does not breach U.S. antitrust and securities law, according to letters seen by Reuters on Thursday, as leaders seek to shore up support days after the shock exit of several large firms. Climate Action 100+ was rocked last week by the withdrawal of the fund arms of State Street and JPMorgan (JPM.N), opens new tab and bond giant Pimco, while the world’s largest asset manager BlackRock (BLK.N), opens new tab scaled back its involvement.
/jlne.ws/48spDj9

A Progress Report on the IRA Shows Electric Vehicle Adoption Is Going Well. Renewable Energy Deployment, Not So Much
Dan Gearino – Inside Climate News
When the Inflation Reduction Act was becoming law in 2022, some of the country’s leading energy researchers and modelers projected how much the legislation would reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The prediction was a cut of 37 percent to 42 percent by 2030 compared to the level in 2005, in line with the Biden administration’s stated goal of reducing emissions by 40 percent by 2030. So how are things going 18 months after President Biden signed the IRA?
/jlne.ws/3URrEm6

Exclusive: US regulator drops some emissions disclosure requirements from draft climate rules
Chris Prentice, Isla Binnie, Jarrett Renshaw and Douglas Gillison – Reuters
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has removed some of its most ambitious greenhouse gas emission disclosure requirements from corporate climate risk rules it is preparing to adopt, people familiar with the matter said on Thursday. The SEC has dropped a requirement for U.S.-listed companies to disclose so-called Scope 3 emissions, which was included in its original draft of the rules published in March 2022, the sources said.
/jlne.ws/3SXysvU

Finland Probes Potential Power Market Breach in Cold Snap Rally; National energy authority to investigate January transactions; No individuals are currently under suspicion, agency says
Leo Laikola – Bloomberg
/jlne.ws/42Odow2

A brilliant win for the climate’: UK exits Energy Charter Treaty citing net-zero concerns
Sarah George – edie
/jlne.ws/48rMsU8

Ready for an 800-Volt Jolt? Carmakers Are Unveiling New Fast-Charging EVs
Ryan Fisher – Bloomberg
/jlne.ws/49Kdbwl

How Do You Breed Climate-Resistant Kelp? In Australia, It Starts with AI
Todd Woody – Bloomberg
/jlne.ws/3Tah9I7

First large-scale offshore wind farm in U.S., off Massachusetts coast, has started delivering electricity
Steve Leblanc and The Associated Press
/jlne.ws/4bP4gM0

Institutions

Julius Baer Suffered Tech Crash That Left Bank, Clients Offline; Clients were unable to trade or see portfolios on Feb. 16; Glitch occurred outside of the busiest European trading hours
Jan-Henrik Foerster – Bloomberg
Julius Baer Group AG suffered a crash of its core banking systems on Feb. 16 that left Switzerland’s second-largest wealth manager offline for some time, according to people familiar with the matter. In a statement, Julius Baer confirmed the temporary outage of its IT systems late afternoon on Feb. 16 caused by “a technical connectivity issue” and added that it was fixed “within a short time.”
/jlne.ws/49LbFtL

Goldman, JPM gain ground in FCM race for swaps; Duo boosted share of required customer funds at the expense of Citi and Morgan Stanley in 2023
Lorenzo Migliorato – Risk.net
Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan captured a higher proportion of required client margin for swap trades in 2023, data from the Commodity Futures Exchange Commission shows, narrowing the gap to top-ranked Citi and Morgan Stanley. Goldman seized an average of 12.7% of all required customer funds for cleared swaps reported by the 13 US futures commission merchants (FCMs) to the CFTC during the year, up 128 basis points from 2022, while JP Morgan’s figure climbed 122bp to 14.3%.
/jlne.ws/49HWv8E

Citadel Made More Than $4 Billion From Commodities in 2023; Commodities business led by Barrack has been boon for Citadel; Merchant-trading unit, European gas, power helped drive gains
Devika Krishna Kumar – Bloomberg
Citadel’s commodity-trading business made more than $4 billion in 2023, people familiar with the matter said, helping drive profits for one of the world’s largest hedge funds. The gains came in part from strong performances by Citadel Energy Marketing, its merchant-trading business, as well as European gas and power trading, the people said. A spokesperson for Citadel, which was founded by Ken Griffin, declined to comment.
/jlne.ws/4bHnW4p

Pimco Inflows Are ‘Stunning’ This Year, Allianz Chief Says; Firm attracted about EUR20 billion in first six weeks of year; Clients pulled much money during global bond rout in 2022
Stephan Kahl – Bloomberg
Pacific Investment Management Co. attracted about EUR20 billion ($21.6 billion) in third-party money in the first six weeks of 2024, approaching the level for the entire year before. The bond giant had an “absolutely stunning” development this year, Oliver Baete, chief executive officer of Pimco parent Allianz SE, said in an interview Friday.
/jlne.ws/3wsz30Q

Ex-Trafigura Trader Almada to Start Rare Commodity Hedge Fund; Almada’s eponymous fund will be managed out of Geneva; Start-up commodity funds are a rarity as multi-strats dominate
Nishant Kumar, Archie Hunter, and Grant Smith – Bloomberg
Trafigura Group derivatives trader Tristan Almada has left to set up an eponymous commodities-focused hedge fund, according to corporate filings and people familiar with the matter. Almada Capital’s investment manager will be based in Geneva, according to a person familiar with the launch, who asked not to be identified as the matter is private. Almada had been trading commodity derivatives at Trafigura for four years and was previously a portfolio manager at Andurand Capital Management, Moore Capital Management and Clive Capital.
/jlne.ws/3uIQny6

Work & Management

Make sure your brain has a diverse portfolio too; Students find shelter from the AI storm by taking joint degrees that help make them adaptable to a shifting jobs market
Gillian Tett – Financial Times
Two decades ago, Steve Jobs, founder of Apple, championed the concept of skills diversification. In a Stanford graduation speech, he revealed that after dropping out of college in his youth, he stumbled into a class on Japanese calligraphy. Initially “none of this had even a hope of any practical application” – and was completely unrelated to the field of computer science, where Jobs subsequently worked. But when he created Apple, Jobs blended his art skills with computing to change the design of our digital world.
/jlne.ws/3SSyftA

Forget About Remote Work If You Want More Than $200,000 a Year; Report shows remote work listings drop for high-wage earners; Marketing, media job applicants face the most competition
Alexandre Tanzi – Bloomberg
If you want to make $200,000 or more a year, prepare to dust off your work clothes. Remote work opportunities for high-wage earners have fallen since the third quarter of 2022, according to a report by Ladders, a career site for professionals in North America. Such listings for jobs that pay at least $200,000 declined to about 1 in 10 by December from 3 in 10 at the end of 2022.
/jlne.ws/48n8Eik

Wellness Exchange

Why Viagra has been linked with better brain health
Teddy Amenabar – The Washington Post
Viagra can be a wonder drug for men with erectile dysfunction, helping them maintain their sex lives as they age. Now new research suggests the little blue pill may also be beneficial to aging brains. The findings are based on a massive study of nearly 270,000 middle-aged men in Britain. Researchers at University College London used electronic medical records to track the health of the men, who were all 40 or older and had been diagnosed with erectile dysfunction between 2000 and 2017. Each man’s health and prescriptions were tracked for at least a year, although the median follow-up time was 5.1 years.
/jlne.ws/42L0tv7

Regions

Venezuela to regain place on JPMorgan debt indices; The move comes after the US lifted sanctions on secondary trading in October
Joe Daniels and Joseph Cotterill – Financial Times
Venezuelan sovereign bonds and those of state-owned oil major PDVSA will regain their place on JPMorgan’s emerging market debt indices over a three-month-period beginning in April, after US sanctions on secondary trading were lifted in October. The bonds will be included in the influential EMBI Global/Diversified benchmarks “over a three month phase-in period starting April 30th and ending June 28th”, JPMorgan said in a statement on Thursday.
/jlne.ws/3uKH68M

Miscellaneous

Vice Media, once valued at $5.7 billion, is shutting down Vice.com and laying off ‘several hundred’ staff
The Associated Press
Vice Media plans to lay off several hundred employees and no longer publish material on its Vice.com website, the company’s CEO said in a memo to staff Thursday. Vice, which filed for bankruptcy last year before being sold for $350 million to a consortium led by the Fortress Investment Group, is also looking to sell its Refinery 29 publishing business, CEO Bruce Dixon said in his memo to staff.
/jlne.ws/48qQtbt

London Bike Boom Risks Becoming a Victim of Its Own Success; Ridership in the British capital is up 20% from pre-pandemic levels. With so many bikes around, the potential backlash from everyone else is becoming very real.
Laura Laker – Bloomberg
It’s a familiar concept to any player of Sim City: When you build a road in your virtual town, voila, new cars appear. Ride London’s newest cycle route, running four miles from Greenwich to London Bridge, and you’ll see this phenomenon in real life, only with bicycles. As new segments of those bike lanes fall into place, cyclists appear.
/jlne.ws/3uJcrZv

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