The John Lothian Daily Update is a podcast turning the daily JLN hits and takes comments, our original content and the stories and quips in the top box of First Read into a daily podcast.
Hits & Takes
The late Tom Gira was named the Security Traders Association’s 2020 Dictum Meum Pactum Award recipient. The Dictum Meum Pactum Award recognizes individuals who have demonstrated an unwavering commitment to the betterment of the financial services industry and have exhibited acts of integrity at the highest level consistent with the ideal STA has supported since its inception: Dictum Meum Pactum (“My Word Is My Bond”).
After early-career stops at Nasdaq and the SEC’s Division of Market Regulation, Gira joined FINRA in 1992 and eventually rose to the title of executive vice president of market regulation and transparency services. Under his leadership, FINRA’s Market Regulation Department expanded to conduct cross-market surveillance of all U.S. equities markets and nearly half of U.S. options markets. Gira passed away in June 2020.
JLN’s GoFundMe campaign to raise funds to support MarketsWiki Education program and general operating expenses is off to a good start with a total raised of $2150. The first donation was for $250 from an anonymous donor and the second was a donation of $100 from FIA CEO and President Walt Lukken. Other donors were Neil Lustyk, Nicholas Solinger, Chuck Mackie, Leslie Sutphen, Dawn Combs, Kevin Brennan and a couple of other anonymous donations.
Neil Lustyk is with the CME in operations at the Globex Control Center and was my boss when I was a runner back in 1981 for Shearson. He donated $100, which, if he had given $5 more, would have matched my weekly salary back then.
Thank you to all who have donated and all who will donate yet. Join these industry leaders to support our work on MarketsWiki Education and everything else we do by donating HERE.
YCharts has been acquired by middle market private equity firm LLR Partners.
My wife and daughter (Katherine) and I are off camping in Missouri this weekend to see sons (and brother) Robby and Tim. This is how we are coping with the pandemic and getting our family together. The dogs are headed for their first campout.
Have a great day and stay safe and treat people the same way you want to be treated: with respect, equality and justice.~JJL
In yesterday’s “Cryptocurrencies” section, we posted an article published by the Financial Times entitled, “The strange IPO of Jonathan Rowland’s ‘bitcoin bank’.” It described FT’s interactions with the Founder and Executive Chairman of the bitcoin firm Mode, Jonathan Rowland. Rowland apparently didn’t like an article they published about Mode in September very much – so much so that he singled it out on Twitter and accused FT of publishing an article that was “like an unhappy girlfriend writing a text message late at night.” Unfortunately, I’ve encountered a lot of this kind of toxicity in the cryptocurrency space. This issue has been going on for a while and has been covered by other news outlets as well.~MR
STA 2020: New Exchanges Taking Seats at the SIPs Table
By Suzanne Cosgrove – JLN
Given that there are currently more than a dozen U.S. equity exchanges, why launch new ones?
One reason is to lower costs, but another is to have a voice in governance and market structure, according to Jonathan Kellner, CEO of MEMX and Tom Gallagher, chairman and CEO of the MIAX Exchange Group, both of whom launched new equity exchanges in September.
MEMX was built as a start-up with the help of member investors with more than $135 million from firms including Charles Schwab Corp., Citadel Securities, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Virtu Financial Inc. MIAX added an equity exchange to its three options exchanges.
Kellner noted MEMX is focused on the trading side of the business and not on listings. MEMX will initially give away data and connectivity. “But the plan is not to lose money,” Kellner said. When we reach a higher volume of trading, we will begin to charge, he said. The questions will be what are the right margins and costs.
To read the rest of this story, go here.
Mini VIX Futures – Trading Views with Cboe’s Arianne Criqui
Arianne Criqui, Head of Options and Global Client Services at Cboe, talks shop about the 47-year-old exchange’s popular new mini VIX futures and how its customers can benefit from their use.
How Citadel CEO Ken Griffin Built a $1 Billion Private Property Portfolio; The billionaire hedge-funder has paid more than $1 billion on a cache of ultraluxury homes from London to New York. What’s behind the ‘unprecedented’ spending?
Katherine Clarke – WSJ
In the early 1900s, the country’s wealthiest businessmen including William Randolph Hearst and John D. Rockefeller built sprawling, gilded estates. Living at that kind of boundless scale fell out of favor with subsequent generations, however, and these kinds of estates were either subdivided or turned over to the state or to preservationists.
***** Mr. Griffin likes to buy real estate, but he often breaks the first rule: don’t own the most expensive house on the block. But then if you are a billionaire, maybe that rule does not apply.~JJL
Crypto Poses a Growing Threat to National Security, U.S. Says
Elaine Chen – Bloomberg
Justice Department sees ‘oncoming storm’ of criminal activity; Investigators slowed by patchwork of regulations, report finds
The emergence of cryptocurrencies presents opportunities for terrorists, rogue nations and other criminals who present a threat to U.S. national security, the Department of Justice said Thursday in a report. Law enforcement is hampered by the worldwide reach of digital coins and the lack of consistent regulation across regions, which is “detrimental to the safety and stability of the international financial system,” the report found. Newer entities using crypto, such as peer-to-peer exchanges, kiosk operators and online casinos, don’t comply with record-keeping and reporting requirements, undermining investigators.
*****Stop me if you’ve heard this one.~MR
CryptoMarketsWiki Coin of the Week: XRP
Federal regulation of XRP, the digital asset of Ripple, may cause the company to relocate overseas, according to the company’s Executive chairman Chris Larsen during an interview with Fortune. According to Larsen, Ripple has become increasingly frustrated with what it perceives to be a “hostile” attitude towards digital assets by the Federal government, especially the SEC. Ripple has had its share of legal battles, including accusations of legal fraud in the sale of XRP – this week, Ripple’s lawyers were partially successful in having a class-action lawsuit thrown out, though the judge presiding over the case refused to dismiss all of the case’s claims.
Thursday’s Top Three
Our top story Thursday was Help John Lothian News Capture Industry History With GoFundMe Campaign, from John Lothian, about our campaign asked for your support to help keep JLN’s MarketsWiki Education video series and our daily operations afloat. Second was the New York Times’ A Columnist Makes Sense of Wall Street Like None Other, about the Bloomberg columnist Matt Levine and his “Money Stuff” newsletter. Third was When You Have Enough, It’s Time to Help Others, also from The New York Times.