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
JLN published two videos yesterday, one with SGX CEO Loh Boon Chye and the other with The Full FX Co-Founder Colin Lambert. Lambert talks about the new publication he and Michelle Hemstedt launched and Boon Chye talks about how FIA Boca-V went, how SGX’s expansion into the U.S. has added trading volume, and about equity product happenings.
Our friends at FEX Global and Trading Technologies jointly announced a deal to connect the TT platform to FEX market participants. It allows all energy, commodity and environmental derivatives listed on FEX Global to be traded through TT.
CME Chairman Emeritus Leo Melamed‘s latest book will be published in hardcover on April 27. The name of the book is “Man of the Futures: The Story of Leo Melamed and the Birth of Modern Finance.”
Two Coinbase employees were married by exchanging NFTs as well as rings so they could get married on the blockchain. This puts new meaning into the phrase the “old ball and (block)chain.”
ICE put out their volume and open interest numbers from March today and they sizzled. Highlights from the first quarter of 2021 included total average daily volume (ADV) up 30% versus the fourth quarter of 2020. Open Interest at the exchange was up 4% year year-over-year and up 10% compared to December 31, 2020. Some of the products with increases in average daily volume included Brent, TTF gas, ags and metals, sugar, interest rates and Sterling. SONIA ADV was up 627% year on year, including a record 226 thousand contracts on March 9.
Tradeweb announced they had record volume in March with an average daily volume of $1.07 trillion per day.
There is a story in the Financial Times by Patti Waldmeir that Jeremy Grant wanted me to see and share. It is about racial disparities between two parts of Evanston, Illinois, one predominantly white and the other predominantly black. The difference in life expectancy between these two sections of the same town is 10 years; if you are black you have 10 fewer expected years to live. It is a microcosm of the historic racial disparities we have in the U.S. Evanston has decided to try to do something in the form of reparations for people impacted by redlining practices in the previous century.
There were no new donations to the JLN MarketsWiki Education GoFundMe campaign yesterday. Help us preserve industry history by giving to our GoFundMe campaign.
Have a great day and stay safe and treat people the same way you want to be treated: with respect, equality and justice.~JJL
Catching up: The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation on Friday reported another record for monthly sales of adult-use cannabis in March 2021, surpassing $100 million for the first time since it was legalized in the state. Perhaps it’s no coincidence that March marked the one-year anniversary of the month the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic. It was also March 2020 (on the 13th) when then-President Trump declared the COVID-19 outbreak in the United States a national emergency. ~SC
The Full FX Co-Founder Colin Lambert Talks with John Lothian News
Out of the ashes of last fall’s closing of Profit & Loss, longtime P&L editor Colin Lambert and the former commercial director of P&L, Michelle Hemstedt, have launched a new publication, The Full FX. John Lothian News interviewed Lambert in Sydney over Zoom recently about starting the publication, who is involved, and what the plan is.
SGX’s CEO Talks With John Lothian News
John Lothian News interviewed Singapore Exchange CEO Loh Boon Chye over Zoom in Singapore after the FIA Boca-V conference. Boon Chye talked about SGX, its new products and marketing during the pandemic.
FEX Global, the Newly Launched Australian Futures Exchange, Contracts with Trading Technologies to Distribute the TT Platform to Market Participants; All energy, commodity and environmental derivatives listed on FEX Global are now tradable through TT
Trading Technologies International, Inc.
Trading Technologies International, Inc. (TT), a global provider of high-performance professional trading software, infrastructure and data solutions, and FEX Global, a newly launched Australian futures exchange, today announced that FEX Global has contracted with Trading Technologies to provide the exchange’s trading participants with the company’s TT trading platform.
*****TT is starting to remind me of the early 2000s when they were announcing a new API or plans to write to one every week.~JJL
Billionaires John, Laura Arnold to give 5% of wealth yearly
Haleluya Hadero – AP
Billionaire philanthropists John and Laura Arnold have committed to donate 5% of their wealth annually as part of an effort to encourage increased, timelier donations to charities. The Arnolds, who live in Houston, are the first billionaires to sign on to the advocacy organization Global Citizen’s “Give While You Live” campaign, which calls on the world’s billionaires to give at least 5% of their wealth every year to a cause. The Arnolds’ pledge Monday came as part of an alliance between Global Citizen and the Arnold-led Initiative to Accelerate Charitable Giving — a coalition of donors, experts and nonprofits who want Congress to raise giving requirements.
*****John Arnold is a former Enron analyst/trader who was dubbed the “king of natural gas” by colleagues and founded the hedge fund Centaurus Advisors after Enron collapsed.~JJL
Citadel Gets the Spotlight; With banks hobbled by new regulation after the financial crisis, Citadel Securities became a major force in trading. But the GameStop episode that revealed the firm’s huge role in U.S. listed markets has attracted the attention of politicians and regulators.=
Tom Maloney – Bloomberg
For the world of finance, it was must-watch TV. A U.S. congressional committee summoned an odd assortment of Wall Street characters to testify about a saga that captured so much public attention it was discussed on Good Morning America. How did amateur traders, billionaire hedge fund managers, social media posts, and an opaque market structure fuel a dizzying surge, and sudden crash, in the shares of video game retailer GameStop Corp.?
******No wonder Heath Tarbert joined Citadel. He likes the spotlight.~JJL
After Covid-19, Office Leases Largely Come With Bargain Rates; Companies looking for offices in large U.S. cities are seeking less space but longer terms
Peter Grant – WSJ
Big companies are making plans to stick with city-center office buildings, but they are cutting back on space and driving down rent prices for years to come, according to an analysis of U.S. office leasing trends prepared for The Wall Street Journal. The Journal’s leasing information comes from the data firm VTS, which tracks tens of thousands of negotiations across the U.S. between landlords and tenants. Landlord and tenant discussions in seven of the largest office markets offer an early glimpse into the evolving workplace strategies for hundreds of companies after a year of largely remote work.
******Right now my plans are to continue to work from home when my lease is up unless I get or can find a bargain basement deal on some office space.~JJL
Illinois town starts spending to address the racial divide; Reparations programme aims to distribute funds for housing among discriminated against families
Patti Waldmeir – FT
I live on one side of the railway tracks in a small town outside Chicago, and most of the city’s black residents live on the other side. In US census tract 8092, on the mostly African-American side of Evanston, Illinois, the average life expectancy at birth is 75.5 years.
*****In an unrelated factoid, when I started following Trading Technologies, their Chicago office was in Evanston.~JJL
Monday’s Top Three
The most-read story on Monday was an opinion piece published by Business Insider, Robinhood, Retail Brokers Still Quietly Screwing Over Users. The second most read was from Yahoo Finance, which looked at The New York Stock Exchange’s massive post-COVID question. And third was from TD Ameritrade by (former JLN staffer) Doug Ashburn, Where Does My Order Get Filled? Taking Stock of the U.S. Market.