‘This One Here Is Gonna Kick My Butt’—Farm Belt Bankruptcies Are Soaring

Feb 7, 2019

First Read

Hits & Takes
JLN Staff

GH Financials is no longer an LME member.~SD

Intercontinental Exchange’s most recent episode of “Inside the ICE House” tells the story of Reverend Thomas Johnson and his son, Thomas IV, the first African American father-son duo to hold membership at the NYSE simultaneously.~SD

J.C. Mauras, VP Business Development at Fidessa, had this to say about the recent firing of Thesys Technologies as the contractor for the Consolidated Audit Trail: “Regardless of who delivers the CAT, or when – the SEC isn’t going to back off on demanding greater transparency from all participants. The datasets required to provide a robust CAT solution are not about just playing to the new rules, but will also power new compliance and surveillance tools while allowing our customers to innovate with their business intelligence.” I still have not seen a public comment or press release from the SEC regarding the news.~SD

Futures For Kids is having a quiz night fundraiser. Don’t miss out on a fun night of quizzing and a healthy dose of competitive spirit – while raising money to help create a brighter future for disadvantaged children and young adults worldwide. The event is April 3 at 6 PM at Balls Brothers, 3 Mincing Lane, Minster Court, London.~JJL

I have been invited to a political fundraiser in Chicago for Mayoral candidate Bill Daley. The hosts are Leo Melamed, Jack Sandner and Charlie Carey. Daley must be amazing to get Leo and Jack to collaborate together again.~JJL

In last week’s episode of the “The Spread,” I said that if Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow, thus predicting more winter, I’d be… less than pleased. Luckily for Phil, he saw no shadow, thus heralding an early spring. It’ll be a high of 16 tomorrow in Chicago.~SD


Fintech in 2019: The Year Cloud Computing Hype Gets Realized


We’ve been hearing the same buzzwords year after year – machine learning, big data, blockchain, cloud computing. In this video from STAC’s 93rd Annual Midwinter Meeting, USAM Group CEO Feargal O’Sullivan talks about why this is the year that cloud computing in financial services will really take off.

Watch the video »


There’s No Good Reason to Trust Blockchain Technology
Bruce Schneier – WIRED
In his 2008 white paper that first proposed bitcoin, the anonymous Satoshi Nakamoto concluded with: “We have proposed a system for electronic transactions without relying on trust.” He was referring to blockchain, the system behind bitcoin cryptocurrency. The circumvention of trust is a great promise, but it’s just not true. Yes, bitcoin eliminates certain trusted intermediaries that are inherent in other payment systems like credit cards. But you still have to trust bitcoin—and everything about it.

*****Schneier’s analysis includes this nugget: “Honestly, cryptocurrencies are useless. They’re only used by speculators looking for quick riches, people who don’t like government-backed currencies, and criminals who want a black-market way to exchange money.”


CFPB moves to water down tough proposed Obama-era rules on payday loans
Jim Puzzanghera – Los Angeles Times
The nation’s new consumer financial watchdog proposed Wednesday to significantly water down tough pending rules on payday and other short-term loans designed to prevent lenders from taking advantage of cash-strapped Americans.
The proposal by Kathy Kraninger, who became director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in December after being nominated by President Trump, would eliminate provisions requiring lenders to determine if borrowers can repay the short-term loans.

***** Good news for the loan sharks.~JJL


2018 Was Fourth-Hottest Year in Modern Records, U.S. Government Scientists Say
Timothy Puko – WSJ
The past five years have been the hottest in modern records, federal scientists said Wednesday, the latest in a series of warnings as House Democrats promise to combat climate change.

***** I thought it was just me.~JJL


Wednesday’s Top Three
Our top read stories of the day were led by Coindesk’s article Winklevoss Exchange Gemini Shuts Down Accounts Over Stablecoin Redemptions. Second was Bloomberg’s piece, Brexit: An Uneasy Truce in $400 Trillion Derivatives Fight. And third went to the politics of the day, having nothing to do with the State of the Union address, Ex-Goldman CEO hits back at Bernie Sanders from the New York Post.


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Lead Stories

‘This One Here Is Gonna Kick My Butt’—Farm Belt Bankruptcies Are Soaring; Trade disputes over agriculture add pain to low commodity prices that have been grinding down American farmers for years
Jesse Newman and Jacob Bunge – WSJ
A wave of bankruptcies is sweeping the U.S. Farm Belt as trade disputes add pain to the low commodity prices that have been grinding down American farmers for years. Throughout much of the Midwest, U.S. farmers are filing for chapter 12 bankruptcy protection at levels not seen for at least a decade, a Wall Street Journal review of federal data shows.

****It’s always fitting to have a guy named Bunge writing about grain.~SD

National Australia Bank Chiefs to Resign in Wake of Damaging Report
Jamie Tarabay – NY Times
The two top executives at one of Australia’s largest banks will depart after a damning report on misconduct in the country’s financial industry singled them out for their resistance to changing how they do business.

BB&T and SunTrust to combine in $66bn US bank deal; Tie-up to create America’s sixth-largest lender by assets
James Fontanella-Khan in New York – FT
SunTrust Banks and BB&T have agreed to combine in a $66bn all-stock transaction, in the first major merger between two large US regional banks since the financial crisis.

Cannabis craze weeds out junior mining field
Joe Bavier, Barbara Lewis – Reuters
A boom in cannabis investment is siphoning capital away from mining and hitting junior miners hardest, forcing them to up their game and potentially improving the quality of projects in a sector long rife with cowboy speculators.

A fintech firm backing hot robo advisors like Betterment and Stash is planning to launch crypto custody services within the next few months
Dan DeFrancesco – Business Insider Prime
Apex Clearing, which offers clearing and custody services for robo advisors, is aiming to launch its crypto custody offering as soon as this month, Business Insider has learned.
Apex Crypto was initially announced by the company in September 2018 with a planned roll out of the fourth quarter of 2018.
Apex Crypto will offer custody services for clients in most states, with the exception of about a dozen it needs licensing for, according to a source familiar with the matter.

NAB chief executive and chairman resign after critical report; Inquiry found NAB charged A$100m in fees to customers without providing any service
Jamie Smyth – FT
The chief executive and chairman of National Australia Bank resigned on Thursday following stinging criticism of the bank and their leadership in a report on misconduct in the finance sector.

Barclays expands client clearing in Asia with Japan deal; The Japan Securities Clearing Corporation granted Barclays clearing authorisation in November as it looks to expand its clearing business and presence in Asia.
Hayley McDowell – The Trade
UK investment bank Barclays will clear its JPY swaps trades through the Japan Securities Clearing Corporation (JSCC) after being granted authorisation to operate as a client clearer in November, The TRADE understands.

SocGen to Shrink Trading Unit, Cut Costs After Market Rout
Fabio Benedetti Valentini – Bloomberg
Bank sees fixed-income, commodities, currency trading down 29%; Lender to review less profitable trading activity after slump
Societe Generale SA is shrinking its markets business and cutting an additional 500 million euros ($567 million) of costs to combat the market rout that sent trading revenue tumbling.

Opinion: The tech industry is getting away with the murder of capitalism; Tech moguls love monopolies — and that’s a cancer on capitalism
Vivek Wadhwa – MarketWatch
India has been accused of resorting to protectionism because it enacted regulations that impose limits on e-commerce platforms. The criticisms are unfair; India is doing what the U.S. should have done: preserve capitalism and free markets. The tech industry is a predator that will keep breaking every rule if left unchecked.

ISDA Publishes German Bank CDS Protocol
The International Swaps and Derivatives Association, Inc. (ISDA) has announced the launch of the ISDA 2019 German Bank CDS Protocol, designed to reflect changes being made to credit default swaps (CDS) on German bank reference entities.

Exchanges, OTC and Clearing

IEX research fans the flames of US exchange data feed pricing row
Louise Bowman – Euromoney Magazine
The proposed launch of a new US equities exchange may just be a shot across the bows of the incumbents, but it illustrates the anger within the industry at exchange data costs that have risen 5.4% annually since 2010.

Inside MS MTF: Europe’s Newest Equity Venue
Tim Cave – TABB Forum
Given the attention in recent weeks on the creation of Members Exchange (MEMX), a planned US stock exchange backed by a group of banks, market-makers and retail brokers, it might have been easy to overlook that in Europe a new equity venue has quietly gone live.

CME Group Increases Regular Quarterly Dividend by Seven Percent
CME Group
CME Group Inc., the world’s leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace, today declared a first-quarter dividend of $0.75 per share, a seven percent increase from the prior rate of $0.70 per share. The dividend is payable March 25, 2019, to shareholders of record as of March 8, 2019.

Intercontinental Exchange Announces 15% Increase to its Quarterly Dividend
Intercontinental Exchange (NYSE: ICE), a leading operator of global exchanges and clearing houses and provider of data and listings services, announced board authorization of its first quarter 2019 dividend of $0.275 per share, up 15% from its previous $0.24 per share quarterly dividend in 2018.

Intercontinental Exchange Reports Fourth Quarter 2018
Intercontinental Exchange (NYSE: ICE), a leading operator of global exchanges and clearing houses and provider of data and listing services, today reported financial results for the fourth quarter and full year of 2018. For the quarter ended December 31, 2018, consolidated net income attributable to ICE was $611 million on $1.3 billion of consolidated revenues less transaction-based expenses. Fourth quarter GAAP diluted earnings per share (EPS) were $1.07. Adjusted net income attributable to ICE was $536 million in the fourth quarter and adjusted diluted EPS were $0.94, up 25% year-over-year.

Tokyo Commodity Exchange January 2019 Market Summary
The Tokyo Commodity Exchange announced today that January 2019 average daily volume was 80,532 contracts, down 4.7% from December. Volume increased for TOCOM’s most active contracts, such as Gold Standard, which grew 20.7% month-over-month to 32,489 contracts. Gold Mini increased 20.4% m-o-m to 3,181 contracts and Gold Rolling Spot was up 9.0% m-o-m to 5,691 contracts. Platinum Standard decreased 5.5% m-o-m to 9,657 contracts and Dubai Crude Oil contract declined 31.8% m-o-m to 14,899 contracts.

PEGAS Trading Volumes In January 2019
PEGAS, the pan-European gas trading platform operated by Powernext, kicks off the new year with one of its best spot monthly volumes by reaching 124.9 TWh in January. This strong showing was supported by monthly volume records on TTF with 46.5 TWh (previous record: 42.1 TWh in November 2018), on CEGH VTP with 9.7 TWh (previous record: 9.5 TWh in March 2018) and on ETF with 3.4 TWh (previous record: 2.7 TWh in February 2018). The total volume traded in January amounted to 178.0 TWh , including 53.0 TWh on the futures and 161.3 GWh on the options segments, which represents an increase of 9% over last year (January 2018: 162.9 TWh).

JCCH volume report for January 2019 (Japanese commodity market)


The Most Influential Fintechs of 2019
Harrington Starr via Vela
Returning for a second time, Harrington Starr has teamed up with some of the most
knowledgeable companies and experts in Financial Services to come up with 175 companies
that we believe will have the biggest impact on the industry and beyond this year.
Our panel consists of experts from Barclays, EY, Lloyds Banking Group, Baringa,
The Realization Group, RBC, Simmons & Simmons, Everledger, Cruxy & Co, Man Group,
Credit Agricole, TD Securities and Mixpanel, allowing us to get a cross-section of the
major aspects of the Financial Services Technology landscape. We hope you agree, it is an
exciting list, bubbling with potential and, in some cases, already huge early success.

Catena Expands Global Presence with USAM Group Partnership
Catena Technologies has announced a strategic alliance with USAM Group that expands availability of Catena’s flagship derivatives compliance solution to financial institutions in North America and Europe. Under the agreement, USAM will provide marketing and sales strategy and execution for the TRACE Reporting solution, which automates reporting of derivatives trades to global regulators.

Portfolio Managers – Wishing for Integration
Monica Summerville – TABB Forum
Straight-through processing (STP) is old news – or is it? When it comes to portfolio management systems (PMS), despite a majority using packaged solutions, two-thirds of asset managers’ portfolio management workflow includes tasks that require some sort of manual intervention – or are simply not supported at all (see exhibit 1, below).

Quant Insight Develops New Pan-European Macro Risk Alternative Data Product In Partnership With Euronext – Using Innovative Quantitative Techniques, The Macro Risk Insight Dataset Provides Users With Scientific Insight Into The Macro Factors Driving Asset Prices
Quant Insight, a London-based firm specialising in machine learning-driven macro analytics, in partnership with Euronext, the leading pan-European exchange in the Eurozone, have developed a new alternative data service, Macro Risk Insight, in order to provide asset managers with valuable insight into the risk exposure of their investments to global macro factors.

Horizon announces 10 years of success in Thailand
Horizon Software
Horizon Software (Horizon), the world’s leading provider of electronic trading and algorithmic technology, is celebrating 10 years of successful operations in Thailand. The company has consistently ranked among the top vendors for the key local players in the region through its reputation for high performance and excellent customer service and support, as evidenced through multiple Asia-specific and global award wins.

FlexNOW EMS available through Amazon Web Services; The First Cloud-Based Execution Management System
FlexTrade Systems
FlexTrade Systems (@FlexTrade) today announced that FlexNOW, the industry’s first cloud-based execution management system, is now available via Amazon Web Services (AWS).

Deutsche Bank Transforms Global Collateral Management with CloudMargin Platform
CloudMargin and Deutsche Bank
CloudMargin, the award-winning creator of the world’s first and only collateral and margin management solution native to the cloud, and Deutsche Bank, Germany’s leading bank, announced today that, as part of its global transformation programme, the bank is working with CloudMargin to integrate the CloudMargin platform into its Collateral infrastructure. In addition to cost savings, the move is expected to improve the client experience by creating a networked solution for Deutsche Bank’s collateral management, resulting in additional transparency, reduced operational risk and simpler processes.

Globalization Helped Make Stripe a $23 Billion Company. Here’s What Comes Next; The chief of the world’s most valuable payments startup confronts an increasingly fractured world economy.
Ellen Huet – Bloomberg
In 2010, when Patrick Collison founded Stripe Inc. with his younger brother John, he thought the world was headed toward ever-increasing globalization, economic stability and international commerce.

Swedish fintech start-up Tink raises $64 million at a $270 million valuation
Ryan Browne – CNBC
Swedish financial technology start-up Tink says it’s raised 56 million euros ($64 million) in a funding round aimed at fueling its expansion plans.


Sleuths Scour for Frozen Quadriga Coins in Crypto Drama
Olga Kharif and Doug Alexander – Bloomberg
Analysts raise concern about unability to track digital coins; Widow of exchange operator says funds aren’t accessible
The death of a crypto executive trapped C$190 million on a Canadian exchange. Or did it? Ever since Quadriga CX revealed last month that founder Gerald Cotten, who died in India in December, was the only person able to access the exchange’s digital ledgers, scores of blockchain analysts, research companies and amateur sleuths have been arguing over whether some of the money has been moving between accounts since he died and even if the coins existed at all.

Crypto Space May Be in for New Round of Pain, Fundstrat Says
Joanna Ossinger – Bloomberg
Small-cap coins seen as particularly vulnerable to drop; For Bitcoin, key level to watch is $3,100, strategist says
As if cryptocurrencies haven’t been through enough already, they may be poised for yet another leg down.

Templum Markets Hires Bernard Van der Lande as Chief Issuance Officer
Templum Markets, LLC, a registered Broker Dealer and Alternative Trading System (ATS) today announced that Bernard Van der Lande has joined the company as Chief Issuance Officer (CIO). Templum Markets operates a regulated technology platform for the private issuance and secondary trading of digitized securities. As a member of the senior executive team, Mr. Van der Lande will lead Templum Market’s origination, issuance and distribution process.

Abra launches new stock trading service that turns your $BTC into $FB
Frank Chaparro – The Block Crypto
A big player in crypto investing is taking its first big leap into the stock trading world. Abra, the firm known for its bitcoin investment platform, will soon offer a service that will allow its clients to buy stock in companies with bitcoin. Well, sort of.

Swiss Stock Exchange SIX Plans Blockchain Platform in H2
Daniel Palmer – Condesk
Switzerland’s top stock exchange, SIX, aims to roll out a blockchain platform to speed up trading later this year. Reuters reported Feb. 6 that SIX chairman Romeo Lacher said the planned new SIX Digital Exchange (SDX) will initially operate alongside the existing SIX platform.

Korean Central Bank Study: Issuing Digital Currency Poses Financial Risk
Yogita Khatri – Coindesk
Researchers from South Korea’s central bank say issuing a central bank digital currency (CBDC) could have negative ramifications for the economy. The Bank of Korea (BoK) published a study on Thursday, which modeled how a CBDC issuance might affect on liquidity at commercial banks.

Bitcoin Binned: Cryptocurrencies Are Not Worth Recycling, Says Waste Management Firm
Andrew Cave – Forbes
Has it really come to this? Bitcoin investors, who have seen the currency slide by more than 80 per cent since the end of 2017 now cannot even spend the cryptocurrency on recycling their waste.

Japan’s crypto exchanges seek redemption after hacking scandals; Financial and internet companies revamp management of troubled startups
Wataru Suzuki – Nikkei
A year after cryptocurrency exchange Coincheck suffered the worst hacking incident in the history of the industry, its founder, Koichiro Wada, attended a news conference to reassure the public that the startup had learned from the experience. But the 28-year-old engineer wasn’t the one doing the talking.

The geniuses who helped design Apple’s first mouse have set their sights on blockchain and promise the internet will never be the same again
Dakin Campbell – Business Insider
The design firm that created Apple’s first mouse has turned its considerable design prowess on the world of blockchain with a promise that the internet won’t be the same again.


Trump Nominates David Malpass to Head World Bank
Alan Rappeport and Binyamin Appelbaum – NY Times
President Trump on Wednesday nominated David Malpass, one of his top economic advisers and a Wall Street veteran, to be the next president of the World Bank.
Mr. Malpass, currently the under secretary for international affairs at the Treasury Department, is a longtime critic of the World Bank’s lending practices and its business model and has expressed concern about the power that such multilateral institutions exert.

U.S. Senators Push Financial Firms To Address Global Deforestation
Eight U.S. Senate offices led by Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) sent a suite of letters to the nation’s largest asset management firms this week, calling on them to use their financial leverage to stop tropical deforestation.

Democratic Senators renew call for Deutsche Bank probe at banking committee
Two Democratic U.S. Senators – one of whom is a presidential candidate – renewed their calls on Thursday for a probe by the Senate banking committee into Deutsche Bank laundering allegations, according to a letter seen by Reuters.

Staffing at antitrust regulator declines under Donald Trump; Phone directories show number of justice department officials scrutinising mergers has fallen
Kadhim Shubber – FT
Staffing in the antitrust division of the US Department of Justice has fallen since Donald Trump took office despite a boom in big corporate mergers, according to phone directories for the division.

Trump’s run of energy wins raises the risk of hubris; Oil market has shrugged off US sanctions on Venezuela but calm is always dangerous
David Sheppard – FT
If the oil market is worried about US sanctions against Venezuela’s energy exports, it is doing a remarkably good job of masking it. But traders need to keep a close eye on the White House.

The Global Con Hidden in Trump’s Tax Reform Law, Revealed; Why would any multinational corporation pay the new 21 percent rate when it could use the new “global minimum” loophole to pay half of that?
Brad Setser – NY Times
Last night, President Trump reserved a few minutes of his State of the Union address to praise his tax reform law, which turned a year old last month. To promote its passage, Mr. Trump and his congressional allies promised Americans that drastically lowered corporate tax rates would bring home large sums of capital that had been stashed overseas and finance a surge of domestic investment.

Chuck Schumer and Bernie Sanders, a ban on share buybacks is plain stupid; Nothing inherently evil or manipulative about share buybacks
Cullen Roche – MarketWatch
In today’s edition of “People Are Saying Stupid Things About Stock Buybacks,” I want to talk about the Chuck Schumer and Bernie Sanders proposal to ban stock buybacks. Here it is in case you want to become a little bit dumber.

Banks weigh whether to embrace or avoid progressive firebrand Ocasio-Cortez
Pete Schroeder, Michelle Price – Reuters
Barely a month into the new Congress, financial lobbyists in Washington are already strategizing how to handle the star power of rookie Democrat lawmaker Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.


Banking leaders share their insights on adopting the Senior Managers and Certification Regime
In a new video, senior leaders from four financial services firms, together employing over half a million staff, talk about their experiences of adopting the Senior Managers and Certification Regime (SM&CR).

ESMA publishes its 2019 Risk Assessment Work Programme
The European Securities and Markets Authority today publishes its Risk Assessment Work Programme, providing an overview of the analytical, research, data and statistical activities that ESMA will carry out in 2019.

Australian Corporate Bond Company Pty Ltd pays $25,200 for misleading promotional statements
Australian Corporate Bond Company Pty Ltd (ACBC) has paid $25,200 in penalties after ASIC issued two infringement notices for alleged misleading statements made in the promotion of Exchange Traded Bonds (XTBs) on its website between May to December 2017.

CFTC Commissioner Stump to Participate in a Panel Discussion at the TABB Group’s Fixed Income 2019 Conference

Investing and Trading

Investment Managers Are Turning to Latin American Swaps
Jack Callahan – CME Group OpenMarkets
2018 was a record-setting year for the clearing of interest rate swaps of Latin American countries, as global investment managers were drawn to these markets for interest rate exposure.
Volatility was heightened throughout 2018 due to presidential elections in Mexico and Brazil, significant central bank rate changes, and escalating trade tensions.

Quantifying Fee Drag on Investment Returns
S&P Dow Jones Indices
The impact of fees on investment returns is a widely studied and much debated topic. Over the past decade, as index-linked, lower-cost passive investing has taken hold, fees have become a greater focus. In recent years, there have been several studies published examining the impact of fees on performance.

Canadian Pot ETF Retakes Billion-Dollar Mark as Stocks Surge
Kristine Owram – Bloomberg
The New Year’s rally in pot stocks has sent assets in the first marijuana exchange-traded fund back above C$1 billion for the first time since Oct. 18, the day after Canada legalized recreational pot.

Twitter forecast first-quarter revenue below estimates, shares fall
Angela Moon – Reuters
Twitter Inc forecast first-quarter revenue below Wall Street estimates and reported a drop in users for the fourth quarter on Thursday, sending its shares down 8 percent in early trading.

Where are all the female financial advisors?
Joshua M Brown – The Reformed Broker
Josh here – my colleague Blair is in town this week and we talked about the massive reaction that her New York Times op-ed generated throughout the wealth management industry.

JPMorgan Says Boost Your Risk Positions. And Unwind Those Hedges
Adam Haigh – Bloomberg
After Fed shift, favors U.S. high-grade in asset allocation; Recommends going long U.S. stocks sensitive to China, trade
1,310.50USD/t oz.-3.90-0.30%
The Federal Reserve’s pause on further tightening, and the chance of a positive surprise from China’s economy, have strategists at JPMorgan Chase & Co. beefing up risk-taking positions, cutting cash levels and favoring industrial metals.


‘Socially Conscious’ mutual fund launches at record high
Simon Jessop, Ritvik Carvalho – Reuters
A record number of ‘socially conscious’ mutual funds and exchange-traded funds were launched by asset managers last year, keen to tap growing demand from retail investors.

Goldman Sachs bond-trading cuts go against the grain; Other big US banks bet that post-crisis decline in fixed income is coming to an end
Laura Noonan – FT
Goldman Sachs is the only big US bank planning major changes to its bond-trading division this year, as fixed-income bosses in other corners of Wall Street bet that a tough fourth quarter was an anomaly and that the post-crisis decline in their businesses is coming to an end.

SocGen to cut EUR500m in costs from investment bank; French bank lowers targets for profitability amid difficult market conditions
David Keohane – FT
Société Générale has lowered its financial targets and will cut EUR500m in costs from its investment bank as it becomes the latest French lender to take action in the face of punishing market conditions.

Opinion: ‘Bond king’ Bill Gross never lost his investing crown
Mark Hulbert – MarketWatch
Bill Gross’ track record as a bond fund manager has been roundly — and unfairly — criticized. Gross earlier this week announced his retirement from mutual-fund management. It’s no secret that Gross’ investment performance, while phenomenal up until 2014, thereafter took a dramatic turn for the worse and over the past four-plus years has been dismal.


Bankers suggest Russian firms delist as sanctions uncertainty bites
Olga Popova, Anastasia Teterevleva, Maria Kolomychenko – Retuers
Uncertainty caused by the expansion of U.S. sanctions on Russia last year has pushed companies’ share prices lower, prompting investment bankers to suggest their clients should delist from local and international exchanges.

Turkish banks have been unable to recoup bad loans from state fund since August -sources
Ebru Tuncay, Orhan Coskun – Reuters
Turkish banks have not been receiving compensation since August for non-performing loans made to companies covered by guarantees from the state Credit Guarantee Fund (KGF), five sources familiar with the matter said.


Trump and Brexit have ended up remarkably similar. Here’s why; ‘Anglo-American populism is a mix of wronged superpower vengeance plus buccaneering capitalism’
Simon Kuper – FT
Like identical twins raised in different homes, the Trump and Brexit projects have ended up remarkably similar. They were similar in their advertising in 2016 and are now similar in the way they actually work — even if the advertising isn’t similar to the way they work.

Can ‘trusted trader’ status crack Brexit backstop problem?; Scheme favoured by Eurosceptics will not resolve Irish border issue, warn experts
Alan Beattie in Brussels and George Parker- FT
Theresa May arrives in Brussels on Thursday to try to salvage her Brexit deal, with Tory Eurosceptics urging her to promote new solutions to solve the vexed issue of the Irish border.

Where Europe Would Be Hurt Most by a No-Deal Brexit
Allison Mccann, Milan Schreuer And Amie Tsang – NY Times
With only 50 days until the deadline for Britain to leave the European Union, the political negotiations for a withdrawal agreement remain stuck – and the economic concerns are growing.
By most accounts, Britain’s economy would be hammered if it crashed out of the European Union without a deal. The gloomiest projections show that Britain would lose 9.3 percent of its gross domestic product, housing prices could sink by 30 percent and the pound could fall against the dollar to $1.10. (The pound, seen as a barometer of confidence in Brexit, is now at about $1.29.)


RCM partners with Rapunzl Investments to bridge academia for students to the financial community
RCM Alternatives
It’s easy to forget in the world of hedge funds and investments that things like lack of performance persistence, too much fees for beta exposure, or potential cracks in the market microstructure with Iceberg order types…. that those aren’t real problems in the way gun violence or hunger or education is to some of Chicago’s most underserved teenagers.

International Student Enrollment Drops for Second Year, Report Says; Institutions that primarily offer masters degrees but not doctorates are hardest hit
Douglas Belkin – WSJ
The international market for U.S. graduate education is softening. For the second year in a row the number of students from abroad who enrolled in U.S. graduate schools fell by 1%. The drop was led by a decline in students from Saudi Arabia and India, according to a report released Thursday from the Council of Graduate Schools, a Washington, D.C.,-based organization whose members include 500 colleges and universities.

Young reporters find new ways to break into journalism; Crowdfunded platforms and non-profits create opportunities in a shrinking industry
Jill Martin Wrenn – FT
Breaking into journalism has always taken talent, tenacity and entrepreneurialism. Now young would-be reporters and editors also face the challenge of trying to gain a foothold in a contracting industry.

John Lothian Newsletter

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