Hits & Takes
John Lothian & JLN Staff
With Bitcoin at all time highs, DeFi now worth over $100 million, Cboe going full crypto with the purchase of ErisX and the recent launch of the first Bitcoin Futures ETF, if you need help understanding this, you can always check out key players, terms and digital assets at MarketsWiki, where we integrated the content of CryptoMarketsWiki in recent months. Also, the FT yesterday published a crypto glossary for some key crypto terms.
In fact, the FT published today a timely Special Report on how safe are digital assets that includes the following stories:
– What are digital assets and how are they held? Demystifying the benefits and risks, and how blockchain is built and functions
– Blockchain: a clickable guide; An interactive graphic explaining how the databases behind digital assets work
– Crypto glossary; Want to speak crypto? This FT guide explains all the major terms and tells you all you need to know
– Cryptocurrencies: how do they work and what are the risks? A simple guide to the assets, from what they are to what investors need to know
– Stablecoins: what are they for — and how stable are they? Explaining the digital assets designed to limit volatility but attracting regulators’ attention
Eurex is also getting deeper into the crypto space with a webcast on October 26 from 16:00 CET to 17:00 CET. This webcast will look at ‘Decrypting crypto: How traditional financial institutions enter the cryptocurrency market.” Learn more and register HERE.
The good people at the Singapore Exchange have announced the winners of the annual SGX Orb Awards as financial content producers shared their writing on topics ranging from changing trends in personal finance to market innovations such as SPACs, as well as Asia’s progress on sustainability and sustainable finance. The SGX Orb Awards were launched in 2018 and extend SGX’s efforts in fostering financial education and empowering investors by recognising excellence in financial journalism and content. — SGX
The good people at the law firm Vinson & Elkins are putting on a webcast titled “What’s Driving Transition Energy IPOs and SPAC Combinations?” on November 4, 2021 from 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. CT. Since they published a paper in August titled “Clean Energy IPOs and SPAC Combinations,” there has been a big increase in SPAC and traditional IPO activity in the energy transition sector. The firm will “breakdown some of these recent transactions and take a look at how a combination of capital markets developments and regulations could continue to supercharge growth” in the webcast. To register for the webcast, click HERE.
The Chicago Federal Reserve is looking for summer interns in several different key aspects of the organization. — Chicago Federal Reserve
David Prosperi, formerly of the OCC, has put a plug on LinkedIn for a non-profit that helps children dealing with cancer. Team44 provides pediatric oncology hospitals with XBOX consoles so their patients can stay connected with their families and friends through gaming. You can learn more and make a donation HERE.
There were no new donations to the JLN MarketsWiki Education GoFundMe campaign yesterday.
I was in the office in the CBOT Building on Tuesday to do some work and because I hosted Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism Assistant Professor Ceci Rodgers for lunch as a thank you for passing on our need for a new intern, which led to Alex Perry joining JLN. Ceci was also the person I contacted at Commodity News Service to find out who to talk to about a job when I was graduating from Purdue University in December of 1983. Ceci was then the head financial editor in Chicago for CNS and covered the FX and stock index markets. I met with then-CNS Chicago Bureau Chief Bob Bogda the day after my last exam and told him I wanted to work for him. Thus, Ceci has a long history of helping young people find jobs in financial journalism.
While in the CBOT Building, I stopped in and talked to some of the staff at Ceres. The restaurant is open and continues to be that way. They see increased flows of customers on some days, they said. They still serve the stiffest drink in Chicago.
Have a great day and stay safe and treat people the same way you want to be treated: with respect, equality and justice.~JJL
FairX, the new Chicago-based exchange catering to retail investors, announced today that on October 25 it will launch cash-settled Micro Crude Oil Futures, based on the West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil benchmark. FairX said the contract will represent the most cost-effective way for the retail market to trade the price of crude oil. Sized at 100 barrels, it will trade 23 hours a day.~SR
Cboe’s Dave Howson Details His ‘Once in a Career’ Mission in Europe, Asia – Part 2
Cboe Global Markets’ Dave Howson took over as EVP and president, Europe and Asia Pacific in January 2020, a time marked by the challenges of Brexit and shutdowns related to the global pandemic.
In the second part of a two-part video interview, Howson talks about the timing of the September 2021 debut of Cboe Europe Derivatives, Cboe’s EU-based derivatives exchange. Customers had been requesting that Cboe start one for years, especially after its acquisition of Bats in 2017, he said, but the pieces finally aligned this year with Cboe’s purchase of EuroCCP, its clearing house in Amsterdam.
CFTC Charges Energy Broker, Its Owners, and Affiliated Firms with Fraud, Unauthorized Trading, and Supervision Violations
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission announced today that it has filed a civil enforcement action in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas against Coquest Inc., a registered introducing broker (IB), and its owners Dennis Weinmann and John Vassallo, and their trading firms Buttonwood LLC and Weva Properties Ltd., all of Dallas, Texas.
*****If this is true, this is very disappointing. John Vassallo was a longtime member of the NFA Board of Directors representing Introducing Brokers.~JJL
Citadel Takes SEC To Court To Protect “Millions Of Retail Investors”; The new trading innovation may bring greater protection for retail traders.
Tim Fries – Tokenist
Citadel Securities, the well-known market maker in the Robinhood/GameStop drama, is heading towards a collision with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). On October 25th, both parties have a court date to settle a dispute over changes the SEC has introduced surrounding high-frequency trading and D-Limit orders
Why Accenture is giving VR headsets to thousands of new hires
Max Zahn with Andy Serwer – Bloomberg
Formula One drivers use virtual reality to simulate a race, Walmart (WMT) employees don the headsets to prepare for unruly customers, and Bank of America (BAC) workers practice sensitive financial conversations on the devices.
***** Why are the founders of Get Real, Rob Merrilees and Ed Haravon, smiling so much about this story? Ed spoke at our MarketsWiki Education World of Opportunity series about Get Real and the potential of VR.
The Hidden Ways the Ultrarich Pass Wealth to Their Heirs Tax-Free; An inside look at how Nike founder Phil Knight is giving a fortune to his family while avoiding billions in U.S. taxes.
Ben Steverman, Anders Melin and Devon Pendleton – Bloomberg
Sitting in the bleachers by the University of Oregon’s running track, Nike Inc. founder Philip Knight offered the sort of lofty promise many other super rich Americans have made over the past decade. The bulk of his money, he told CBS News that day in 2016, would be given away—eventually. “By the time the lives of my children and their kids run out, I will have given most of it to charity,” he said. What Knight didn’t mention was that, for years, he’d been using a range of legal techniques to ensure his heirs keep control of most of his assets and profit from them in the process, quietly transferring vast piles of money in a textbook example of how the rich avoid taxes.
***** One can only wish one had these problems.~JJL
‘Trillions’ Review: The Rise and Rise of the Index Fund; When John Bogle wanted to move investment into portfolios managed by formula, he was ridiculed in the press. Nobody’s laughing now.
Burton G. Malkiel – WSJ
Index funds—which buy and hold all the stocks in an index, such as the S&P 500—now account for more than 40% of the money invested in mutual funds and exchange-traded funds. Literally trillions of investment dollars are currently indexed. Hence “Trillions: How a Band of Wall Street Renegades Invented the Index Fund and Changed Finance Forever,” a chronicle of financial innovation by Robin Wigglesworth, a correspondent for the Financial Times. “Trillions” is a magisterial, delightfully written history offering up portraits of the academic scribblers and entrepreneurial practitioners who created the index-fund revolution. It also contains common-sense wisdom that will benefit all investors.
***** I interviewed the author of “Trillions,” Robin Wigglesworth, on Monday and we will publish that interview soon.~JJL
Wednesday’s Top Three
Our top story Wednesday, no surprise here, was the Cboe press release Cboe Agrees to Acquire ErisX, Entering Digital Asset Space with Spot, Derivatives and Clearing Platform. ErisX was also our MarketsWiki Page of the Day. Second was Is Coffee Good for You? from The New York Times. As someone who always hopes the answer is “Yes!” I felt a strong sense of déjà vu reading this story. Not surprising, since it was first published on Feb. 13, 2020. Third was the job posting for an Associate Principal, Member Services (Production) from the OCC.
26,635 pages; 236,071 edits
What Happens When the World’s Key Metal Exchange Has No Metal?
Jack Farchy and Mark Burton – Bloomberg
What happens when the London Metal Exchange runs out of metal? That’s the question the exchange is urgently trying to address for its flagship copper contract, which sets the global price for one of the world’s most important commodities.
Bitcoin tops $66,000, sets record as crypto goes mainstream
Stan Choe – AP
Bitcoin stormed above $66,000 for the first time on Wednesday, riding a wave of excitement about how the financial establishment is increasingly accepting the digital currency’s rise.
Crypto Market Tops $2.7 Trillion as Rally Reaches Beyond Bitcoin
Joanna Ossinger – Bloomberg
Second-largest token Ether on cusp of scaling May record high; Fundstrat sees Solana, Tezos as among tokens close to breakout
Optimism about digital assets stoked by Bitcoin’s run to a record high has helped push the overall value of cryptocurrencies to an all-time peak of more than $2.7 trillion. That’s a climb of about $200 billion from the last high in May for a sector that now spans almost 10,000 coins, according to data from tracker CoinGecko.
JPMorgan Says Bitcoin’s Record Run Is Being Driven by Inflation
Vildana Hajric – Bloomberg
Strategists say optimism over first U.S. ETF unlikely to last; Bitcoin is being seen as a better inflation hedge than gold
Inflation concerns rather than exuberance about the first U.S. Bitcoin futures ETF is driving the digital currency to record highs, according to JPMorgan Chase & Co. strategists.
Cboe Global Markets and MSCI Inc. Expand Relationship, Extend Licensing Agreement Through 2031
Cboe, MSCI to collaborate on strategic initiatives and drive future innovation in the capital markets; Enables Cboe to offer options trading on expanded suite of MSCI global indices in the U.S.; Expanded relationship creates framework for collaboration on new products, services and solutions
Cboe Global Markets, Inc. (Cboe: CBOE), a leading provider of global market infrastructure and tradable products, and MSCI Inc., a leading provider of critical decision support tools and services for the global investment community, today announced they have signed a licensing agreement that extends and broadens their strategic relationship.
The CFTC Was Proved Right on Bitcoin Futures. What’s Next for the Agency?
Daniel Kuhn – Coindesk
On Sept. 29, 2021, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) announced it had filed 14 complaints against various crypto trading platforms. It was the busiest day of action for the nation’s top commodities regulator and a noted departure from its usual course. Between 2015 and the end of June 2020 the watchdog had only brought 19 separate enforcement actions related to crypto businesses.
Short-seller Hindenburg sets $1m ‘bounty’ for details on Tether’s reserves; Scrutiny comes as growing number of investors are looking to tap fast-growing digital asset market
Siddharth Venkataramakrishnan, Joshua Oliver and Robert Smith – FT
Short-seller Hindenburg Research has set its sights on Tether, launching a $1m “bounty” programme for information on the stablecoin company at the centre of the global cryptocurrency market.
DeFi is a reminder of the risks of unfettered financial engineering; While they rely on libertarian ideals of self-governance, nascent blockchain systems are vulnerable
Eswar Prasad – FT
Decentralised finance, or DeFi, is the next frontier in finance. New forms of financial intermediation are using blockchain technology to open up access to finance and bypass inefficient and lumbering traditional institutions like commercial banks. DeFi even makes it possible to sidestep government oversight and regulation. In China, for instance, a national ban on investing in cryptocurrency is pushing traders towards DeFi.
Blockchain: a clickable guide; An interactive graphic explaining how the databases behind digital assets work
FT reporters – FT
A blockchain is a decentralised database, or electronic ledger, of transactions. It is distributed among its users, who also validate the records added to it. This structure enables the transfer of digital assets without the need to go through a central party, such as a bank, broker or intermediary — making transactions quicker and easier.
Chinese Developer Defaults Pile Up as Evergrande Contagion Spreads; The problem could worsen as a wave of debt from the beleaguered industry comes due in the coming months
Frances Yoon, Quentin Webb and Elaine Yu – WSJ
The pain is spreading in the market for Chinese junk bonds. Dollar-bond defaults from Chinese property developers are rising quickly as the country’s housing market slumps, and the problem could worsen as a wave of debt from the beleaguered industry comes due in the coming months.
Interactive Brokers founder on payment for order flow ban: ‘it would be extremely difficult’
Interactive Brokers Founder & Chairman Thomas Peterffy joins Yahoo Finance to discuss how the company attracted 1.5 million accounts to its platform, the impact of crypto, and his views on payment for order flow.
Deutsche Bank Inches Closer to Winning a Huge Bet on Lehman Debt
Lucca de Paoli and Jeremy Hill – Bloomberg
A ruling on once-forgotten subordinated debt issued by Lehman Brothers before its collapse could yield a huge payday for Deutsche Bank AG and other distressed-debt investors.
Former SEC Trading and Markets Director Brett Redfearn Joins Securitize Leadership Team; Veteran of SEC, J.P. Morgan and Coinbase Joins as Senior Strategic Advisor and Chairman of Securitize’s Advisory Board
Securitize, Inc., the regulated platform for issuing and trading digital asset securities, announced today that Brett Redfearn has joined the company’s leadership team as Senior Strategic Advisor to Chief Executive Officer Carlos Domingo, and will also serve as Chairman of the company’s Advisory Board.
These financial firms are flocking to the ‘Wall Street of the South’
Ashley Garrett – ACBJ
South Florida’s journey to become the “Wall Street of the South” is in full swing. The tri-county region has lured a slate of financial firms, particularly from the Northeast and California, over the past 18 months as Covid-19 turned the industry on its head.
Fed Ethics Office Warned Officials to Curb Unnecessary Trading During Rescue; Months later, some Federal Reserve leaders resumed their market activity, stoking a scandal now engulfing the central bank.
Jeanna Smialek – NY Times
On March 23 last year, as the Federal Reserve was taking extraordinary steps to shore up financial markets at the onset of the pandemic, the central bank’s ethics office in Washington sent out a warning.
Digital Dollar Project Appoints Jennifer Brooks Lassiter as Executive Director
The Digital Dollar Project
The Digital Dollar Project (DDP), a non-profit organization to advance the exploration of a U.S. Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC), today announced the appointment of Jennifer Brooks Lassiter, a recognized leader and prominent regulatory and finance expert, as Executive Director and member of its Board of Directors. Lassiter will work closely with the DDP Board and its Advisory Group to explore the challenges and opportunities of a U.S. CBDC through a deliberative process, including pilots, stakeholder meetings, roundtable discussions, and open forums.
Britain’s Economy Finds Out What It Means to Live With Covid
David Goodman and Emily Ashton – Bloomberg
Households face rate hike, tax rises, inflation, energy crunch; Economy is faltering just as Covid cases and deaths are rising
After 19 months spent attempting to ward off Covid-19 while safeguarding jobs and businesses, the U.K. is heading into winter with a growing problem: The coronavirus is spreading rapidly, just as the economy starts going in the opposite direction.
Pfizer-BioNTech Booster Shot Restores Full Covid Protection
Naomi Kresge – Bloomberg
Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE said a booster shot of their Covid-19 vaccine restored full protection in a large study, results that are likely to bolster the argument for giving a third dose more widely. A booster was 95.6% effective against symptomatic Covid in the study, which followed 10,000 people aged 16 and older, the companies said on Thursday.
Apple Will Force Unvaccinated Office Workers to Get Tested Daily
Mark Gurman – Bloomberg
The company is still stopping short of requiring the shots; Unvaccinated retail staff will be asked to test twice a week
Apple Inc. will begin to force unvaccinated corporate employees to test for Covid-19 each time they want to enter an office, a move that tightens its virus protocols while still stopping short of a vaccine mandate.
Moscow Orders Strict Lockdown Amid ‘Worst-Case’ Covid-19 Surge
Jake Rudnitsky – Bloomberg
Mayor tells most businesses, stores to close Oct. 28 to Nov. 7; Measures are the most severe since the early days of pandemic
Moscow will implement its harshest lockdown since the early days of the pandemic last year, as Mayor Sergei Sobyanin said on his blog that the Covid-19 situation was developing according to the “worst-case scenario.”
IMF Warns Covid-19 Risks Becoming Endemic Problem for Africa
Prinesha Naidoo – Bloomberg
Sub-Saharan Africa’s output to lag behind advanced economies; Region needs $425 billion in extra funds to better recover
Economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa will lag behind world output partly because of the slow rollout of coronavirus vaccines, with more delays to immunization raising chances the disease will become an endemic problem, according to the International Monetary Fund.
Ministers resist doctors’ pressure to impose Covid curbs in England; British Medical Association claims government is being ‘wilfully negligent’ in refusing to act
George Parker and Sarah Neville – FT
UK ministers on Thursday continued to resist pressure to impose new Covid restrictions in England, after a doctors’ union claimed the government was being “wilfully negligent” in refusing to move to its Plan B.
BioNTech/Pfizer boosters show 95.6% efficacy against Covid; Results from first randomised, controlled trial suggest extra dose effective regardless of age, sex or race
Donato Paolo Mancini – FT
A booster shot of the BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine is 95.6 per cent effective against Covid-19 compared with those receiving two shots and a placebo, the companies said on Thursday, citing preliminary results from the first randomised, controlled trial on boosters.
Malaysian rubber glove supplier to NHS banned by US for alleged forced labour; Move against Supermax follows UK claims that health service procurements have passed due diligence
William Langley – FT
Malaysian company Supermax, a supplier of rubber gloves to Britain’s NHS health service, has been hit by a US customs order banning its products from the American market over allegations it uses forced labour.
India surpasses 1bn vaccine mark after stuttering start to campaign; Narendra Modi celebrates ‘triumph of Indian science’ months after devastating second wave
Amy Kazmin – FT
India administered its billionth Covid vaccine on Thursday, a milestone that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government hopes will help the country put aside painful memories of this year’s devastating second wave.
US grapples with rapid Covid test crunch as vaccine mandate looms; Unvaccinated employees must soon submit to weekly checks, straining short supply
Jamie Smyth, Kiran Stacey and Oliver Barnes – FT
The US is grappling with a critical shortage of rapid Covid-19 antigen tests amid a surge in demand from consumers and companies ahead of a deadline next month when workers must prove they are vaccinated or submit to weekly testing.
Covid-19 Herd Immunity Proves Elusive in U.K.; British cases and deaths have been rising but the government says it won’t reimpose restrictions now
Denise Roland – WSJ
The U.K., in an experiment watched by the world, lifted most Covid-19 restrictions in the summer, wagering that immunity from vaccinations and prior infections would keep the virus at bay. Three months later, the British experience shows that, in the face of the highly transmissible Delta variant of the coronavirus, herd immunity is elusive. Covid-19 cases and deaths have risen in recent weeks as winter has begun to close in. The bottom line: Reliance on immunity, which is imperfect to begin with and wanes over time, doesn’t guarantee a quick victory over Delta.
Exchanges, OTC and Clearing
Cboe Re-Enters Crypto With Deal to Buy Digital-Asset Platform
Katherine Doherty – Bloomberg
Cboe Global Markets Inc. is re-entering the world of cryptocurrency with an agreement to acquire Eris Digital Holdings LLC amid a growing appetite for the assets.
Bourse operator Cboe to buy digital asset exchange ErisX
John McCrank – Reuters
Cboe Global Markets said on Wednesday it was buying Eris Digital Holdings (ErisX), a spot and derivatives exchange for digital assets, as the exchange operator seeks to become a major player in the cryptocurrency industry.
Cboe Acquires ErisX in Return to Crypto Derivatives Market
Nikhilesh De – Coindesk
The Chicago Board Options Exchange (Cboe) is acquiring crypto spot and derivatives marketplace ErisX, the companies announced Wednesday. The move gives Cboe, which was the first U.S. company to launch bitcoin futures in 2017 before later shuttering the product, a new set of crypto derivatives offerings through ErisX’s bitcoin and ether futures products, as well as spot crypto trading.
First Time Homebuyers Move Closer to Ownership Dream With ICE Mortgage Technology’s Encompass® 21.3 Platform Enhancement; Encompass 21.3 Release Enables 0% Loans for Housing Finance Authority (HFA) Borrowers
Intercontinental Exchange, Inc.
ICE Mortgage TechnologyTM, part of Intercontinental Exchange, Inc. (NYSE: ICE), a leading global provider of data, technology and market infrastructure, today announced that the industry’s leading origination system released additional enhancements to the Encompass® platform. The Encompass 21.3 release supports the ability for lenders to offer 0% loans, making home ownership more accessible for first time buyers.
FairX announces plans to launch Micro Crude Oil Futures on October 25
Fair Exchange (FairX), the new Chicago-based global futures exchange built for the retail market, announced today that on October 25, the exchange will launch Micro Crude Oil Futures, pending approval from the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).
The cash-settled contract, based on the West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil benchmark, will represent the most cost-effective way for the retail market to trade the price of crude oil.
FairX CEO Neal Brady said: “We’re excited to broaden our product line with Micro Crude Oil Futures as we continue on our mission to provide the retail sector with around-the-clock, low-cost opportunities to access liquid futures markets. Our partnership with Nodal Clear provides critical risk management to our business model as we expand into this new asset class.”
Intermonte Partners Sim lists on AIM Italia
Twenty-fourth listing of 2021 on Borsa Italiana’s AIM Italia; Intermonte Partners Sim brings the total number of companies listed on Borsa Italiana’s AIM Italia to 155; Total placement volume of the offering equal to EUR38.5 million
Borsa Italiana, part of the Euronext Group, today congratulates Intermonte Partners Sim on its listing on Borsa Italiana’s AIM Italia.
Investment barometer: Gold is the second most popular asset class among Germans
Deutsche Börse Group
The top investments of the respondents: Real estate in first place and gold in second place
No cryptocurrency for children: financial gifts for birth remain conservative
Even though the Germans still consider the current situation on the global financial markets to be rather uncertain – only a small part of the population worries about their own wealth. That is the result of a representative study by the market research institute Kantar Emnid on behalf of Deutsche Börse Commodities. Overall, the respondents see the situation even more positively than before the outbreak of the corona pandemic.
SGX Orb Awards winners unveiled amid spotlight on Asia’s progress on sustainability
Singapore Exchange (SGX) has unveiled the winners of its annual SGX Orb Awards as content producers shared their thoughts on topics ranging from changing trends in personal finance to market innovations such as SPACs, as well as Asia’s progress on sustainability and sustainable finance.
NYSE Options: CAT 2D MOOT Changes Available for Testing, November Implementation
On November 1, 2021 for NYSE Arca Options and on November 15, 2021 for NYSE American Options, NYSE Options will be updating the Trade Official Timestamp for Industry Member Options Trade (“MOOT”) events on TNT Notification messages sent to Market Makers, pursuant to FINRA CAT Production Phase 2d reporting requirements (“CAT 2D”), which is anticipated to Go-Live in December.
— EBS Market Integration Notice: New and Updated Content — CME
— CME STP Notices: October 21, 2021 — CME
— CME Globex Notices: October 18, 2021 — CME
— Amendments to Align CME Globex and CME ClearPort Listing Schedules of Nine (9) FX Options Contracts — CME
— Performance Bond Requirements: Interest Rate Margins – Effective October 21, 2021 — CME
— Portfolio Margining of Eris SOFR-based Swap Futures – Effective October 20, 2021 — CME
PayPal in talks with Pinterest on takeover worth $45bn; Approach comes as online payments company uses strong stock price to pursue acquisitions
James Fontanella-Khan, Hannah Murphy and Ortenca Aliaj – FT
PayPal, the online payments company, is in talks to acquire social media group Pinterest for about $45bn, in what could result in one of the largest corporate takeover deals of the year, said two people with direct knowledge of the matter.
Symphony is securely connecting clients to their private banks in Asia via WhatsApp and WeChat
Symphony Communication Services
HSBC Global Private Banking has engaged Symphony – the leading markets’ infrastructure and technology platform- to develop and deploy HSBC GPB Chat, a client engagement platform that enables the private bank’s clients to interact with their relationship management team via one-to-one chat, group chat, document sharing and video/audio conferencing on WhatsApp or WeChat, in a secure and compliant way.
Quantum computing startup Multiverse Computing closes EUR10 million investment round; Spanish startup focused on delivering near-term value to global financial
sector through flagship Singularity® product
Multiverse Computing, the first quantum computing startup dedicated to finance, today announced it has closed a seed funding round of EUR10 million (USD $11.55 million). Multiverse Computing developed its flagship product Singularity® for companies in the financial industry seeking a strong competitive advantage by applying quantum computing solutions. The product enables financial professionals to run ultra-efficient quantum algorithms on any quantum computer from a simple spreadsheet to address highly complex problems, such as portfolio optimization and fraud detection, without requiring any knowledge of quantum computers.
As Tech Titans Go to Austin and Miami, Will Tech Workers Follow? The moves of prominent CEOs and VCs to Florida and Texas may be influenced by a new factor in location decisions: Covid restrictions.
Richard Florida – Bloomberg
Elon Musk announced this month that he will move Tesla’s corporate headquarters to Austin, making good on his earlier threat to move his HQ out of California’s Silicon Valley. The Tesla Inc. chief executive officer is hardly the first tech titan to trade the Bay Area for a red state. Peter Thiel and Keith Rabois are just two of the highest profile California venture capitalists who set up shop in Miami.
Plaid Pushes Into Payments Business After Scuttled Visa Deal; The fintech is teaming up with Square, Stripe and dozens of others on a digital pay-by-bank offering
Peter Rudegeair – Bloomberg
Financial-technology startup Plaid Inc. 4165 -3.70% is making a move into the payments business, less than a year after an antitrust lawsuit scuttled its high-price sale to Visa Inc. Plaid makes software that allows banks and other fintech companies to plug into their users’ financial accounts, with their permission, and access their financial data to look up account balances or authenticate personal financial details. Plaid plans to unveil a new program Thursday that will use the software to make it easier and cheaper for consumers and businesses to make digital payments funded by their bank accounts.
State Street’s peer-to-peer repo programme confirms first trade; The programme, which was launched earlier this year, looks to make overnight and term repo trading between counterparties easier.
Wesley Bray – The Trade
Following the launch of State Street’s peer-to-peer repo programme earlier this year, the financial services company has confirmed the first transaction under the programme. The trade is said to have been executed between a large asset owner and a non-traditional investment manager.
FundsDLT and UBS complete investment funds blockchain proof-of-concept pilot; Pilot confirms the viability of a blockchain-based distribution model for investment funds.
Wesley Bray – The Trade
FundsDLT and UBS Asset Management (UBS AM) have successfully demonstrated the advantages of a blockchain-based distribution model for investment funds. The proof-of-concept pilot, which was supported by Zurich-based research and product development company, i.AM Lab, explored a front-to-back blockchain-based investment fund distribution model.
Chinese Regulators Nudge Didi Toward Hong Kong Listing; The ride-hailing giant and two other New York-listed tech companies are said to be advised to sell shares in Hong Kong as cybersecurity probe nears finish
Keith Zhai and Liza Lin – WSJ
China’s internet watchdog suggested ride-hailing giant Didi Global Inc. DIDI 0.70% and two other U.S.-listed tech firms explore listings in Hong Kong, as Beijing wraps up cybersecurity investigations into the companies, people familiar with the matter said.
Greylock’s Sarah Guo Sounds Alarm on Heightened Cybersecurity Risks
Heather Somerville – WSJ
Changes wrought by the pandemic, including the large-scale shift to remote work and rapid growth of new technology products, have contributed to a dire escalation in cyberattacks, venture capitalist Sarah Guo said.
Gartner predicts privacy law changes, consolidation of cybersecurity services and ransomware laws for next 4 years
Jonathan Greig – ZDNet
Gartner analysts released their list of cybersecurity and privacy predictions for the next few years, floating a number of potential ideas about how the world will respond to certain problems over the next decade.
The predictions ranged from potential legislation to how the market for certain technologies will change from now until 2025. Gartner analysts predicted weaponized OT environments will result in human casualties by 2025 due to malware that they believe will spread at “wirespeeds.” The analysts say by that time, cybercriminals will shift from business disruption to physical harm, leading to regulations placing liability on CEOs.
Confronting The Shortage Of Cybersecurity Professionals
James Legg – Forbes
By now, many people recognize that we are approaching a real crisis with America’s cybersecurity posture. The frequency of malicious breaches is mind-blowing in my opinion. The volume of sensitive personal and financial information stolen is massive. The penetration into federal agency files by adversary nations is extensive. The risks to the nation’s electronic and cyber infrastructure, including its finance, utility and transportation systems, are unambiguous, and it seems to be getting worse.
Rediscover trust in cybersecurity
MIT Technology Review
The world has changed dramatically in a short amount of time—changing the world of work along with it. The new hybrid remote and in-office work world has ramifications for tech—specifically cybersecurity—and signals that it’s time to acknowledge just how intertwined humans and technology truly are.
Enabling a fast-paced, cloud-powered collaboration culture is critical to rapidly growing companies, positioning them to out innovate, outperform, and outsmart their competitors. Achieving this level of digital velocity, however, comes with a rapidly growing cybersecurity challenge that is often overlooked or deprioritized : insider risk, when a team member accidentally—or not—shares data or files outside of trusted parties. Ignoring the intrinsic link between employee productivity and insider risk can impact both an organizations’ competitive position and its bottom line.
tZERO ATS Approved to Support Clearing & Settlement for Its Securities Trading Platform; Approval is a Critical Milestone for tZERO’s Next-Generation Trading Ecosystem & Will Accelerate the Velocity of Asset Onboarding
tZERO, a leader in blockchain innovation and liquidity for digital assets, announced today that its broker-dealer subsidiary, tZERO ATS, has been approved to settle and clear securities transactions for itself and its broker-dealer affiliates. Vertically integrating the clearing and settlement process is a key milestone for the evolution of tZERO’s regulated trading platform. tZERO’s broker-dealer subsidiaries will now be able to onboard, independently and rapidly, additional private securities in its current and future pipeline so customers have access to a greater breadth of investment opportunities, use state-of-the-art technology to accelerate the timing of settlement for private security transactions on its platform, and seamlessly transfer cash and securities to and from another platform to enhance the user experience for the securities trading platform.
Bitcoin Options Open Interest Tops $14B as ProShares ETF ‘BITO’ Goes Live
Omkar Godbole – Coindesk
Investor interest in the bitcoin options market increased, with the cryptocurrency nearing record highs in the lead up to Tuesday’s launch of the first-ever U.S.-based bitcoin futures exchange-traded fund (ETF).
The Currency Of The Future: A Bitcoin (BTC) Boom
Daniel Laboe – Zacks
Following SEC Chair Gary Gensler’s landmark approval, the first bitcoin-linked BTC exchange-traded fund (ETF) debuted on the NYSE this week, driving this controversial digital asset to record highs.
Hong Kong Crypto Exchange OSL Launches Operations in Latin America
Andrés Engler – Coindesk
OSL, a Hong Kong-based digital asset trading platform, has started offering its exchange services to professional and institutional investors in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and México, the company said Tuesday.
DeFi Tops $100 Billion for First Time as Cryptocurrencies Surge
Garrett Keyes – Bloomberg
Bitcoin’s record rally helped push the value of assets used in decentralized finance to $100 billion for the first time, according to data compiled by DeFi Pulse. DeFi Pulse calculates the amount by combining the balance of Ether and other assets held in smart contracts settled on the Ethereum blockchain and multiplying them by their price in dollars.
Bitcoin ETF rules leave UK investors out of global craze; Under-30s in survey keen to see a regulated route into cryptocurrencies
Joshua Oliver – FT
The hotly anticipated launch of a bitcoin ETF in the US leaves the UK out of step with some other major markets in maintaining its blockade on retail access to exchange-traded crypto funds.
Tax ‘nudge’ letters to be sent to crypto investors; HMRC plans to probe digital currency holders over possible gains
Emma Agyemang – FT
HM Revenue & Customs plans to send crypto investors nudge letters warning them to check they have paid the right tax. News of the letters, which have yet to be issued, was released by CryptoUK, a trade association, on Wednesday, accountants reported.
Crypto Miners Struggle to Cut Carbon Emissions; Producing cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin requires lots of cheap electricity, putting pressure on the industry
Shane Shifflett – WSJ
Bitcoin mining has earned a bad reputation for guzzling cheap electricity in the pursuit of profit. Now bitcoin miners are trying to go green, to a point. Companies that mine bitcoin are aiming to power their computers with renewable energy or sign up for data centers that rely on the sun or wind. Falling prices for renewables and rising prices for bitcoin make it possible to still earn a profit.
Crypto Exchange FTX Reaches $25 Billion Valuation; Investors in new funding round include Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan and funds managed by BlackRock
Alexander Osipovich – WSJ
Cryptocurrency exchange FTX reached a valuation of $25 billion in a new funding round that includes heavyweights from traditional finance, such as the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan and funds managed by BlackRock Inc. BLK 0.14%
FTX Trading Ltd. Closes $420 Million Series B-1 Funding Round; This Financing Round Raises the Company’s Valuation to $25 Billion
FTX Trading Ltd.
FTX Trading Ltd. (“FTX” or “the Company”), owner and operator of FTX.COM, a leading global cryptocurrency exchange, today announced the closing of a $420,690,000 Series B-1 fundraise, increasing the valuation of the Company to $25 billion. The round saw the participation of 69 investors, including Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan Board, via its Teachers’ Innovation Platform, Temasek, Sequoia Capital, Sea Capital, IVP, ICONIQ Growth, Tiger Global, Ribbit Capital, Lightspeed Venture Partners and funds and accounts managed by BlackRock.
Newt Gingrich pivots to bitcoin; The Trump ally has joined a firm that wants central banks to become HODLers.
Jemima Kelly – FT
The last time you heard of Newt Gingrich was probably when the former Speaker of the US House of Representatives was calling for the arrest of poll workers in his home state of Pennsylvania following the “corrupt, stolen election” of 2020, or when he was writing op-eds refusing to acknowledge Joe Biden as president.
The View From Brussels: How the EU Plans to Regulate Crypto
Sandali Handagama – Coindesk
The European Union (EU) wants to regulate the digital asset industry; there are a number of bloc-wide initiatives already underway. The most comprehensive is a 168-page “Markets in Crypto-Assets” (MiCA) that would create an EU-level licensing framework for crypto issuers and service providers.
Danske Bank reprimanded over ‘shortcomings’ on anti-money laundering controls; Swedish financial regulator not satisfied with lender’s pace in fixing problems
Richard Milne – FT
Sweden’s financial regulator has slammed Danske Bank for failing to overcome controls failures following one of the world’s biggest money laundering scandals.
UK financial regulator faces probe over pension advice scandal; Spending watchdog to assess how FCA oversaw transfers by thousands of steelworkers
Josephine Cumbo and Laura Noonan – FT
The UK’s financial regulator is to be investigated by the parliamentary spending watchdog over its handling of a multimillion pound pension scandal which has left thousands of steelworkers facing retirement losses.
European regulators struggle to progress SDR buy-in delay as ‘degree of panic’ sets in across the industry; A delay of the controversial buy-in rule continues to be considered, but without any action, unrest is setting in among market participants as deadline for implementation looms.
Jonathan Watkins – The Trade
There is a growing fear among market participants and trade associations around the timeline for delaying Europe’s controversial mandatory buy-in rules, which are part of the Central Securities Depositories Regulation (CSDR) Settlement Discipline Regime.
CFTC Charges El Paso Resident and His Firm in Ongoing $3.9 Million Forex and Cryptocurrency Fraud and Misappropriation Scheme
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission today announced that it has filed a civil enforcement action in the Western District of Texas against Abner Alejandro Tinoco, and his company, Kikit & Mess Investments, LLC, both of El Paso, Texas, charging them with fraudulent solicitations and misappropriation of over $3.9 million.
Credit Suisse to Pay Nearly $475 Million to U.S. and U.K. Authorities to Resolve Charges in Connection with Mozambican Bond Offerings; VTB Capital Also Agrees to Settlement with SEC for Role in Misleading Investors
Credit Suisse Group AG has agreed to pay nearly $475 million to U.S. and U.K authorities, including nearly $100 million to the Securities and Exchange Commission, for fraudulently misleading investors and violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) in a scheme involving two bond offerings and a syndicated loan that raised funds on behalf of state-owned entities in Mozambique.
Latest FCA perimeter report calls for legislative change to protect consumers
In its latest Perimeter Report, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has called for legislative change to address concerns beyond its remit.
The Climate Financial Risk Forum publishes its second set of guides to help the financial industry effectively manage climate-related financial risks
A second round of guides to help financial firms manage climate-related financial risk has been published by the Climate Financial Risk Forum (CFRF).
New FSA Commissioner Nakajima Shares Insight on Developing Japan as a Major Financial Center
Commissioner, Financial Services Agency, Japan Mr. Junichi Nakajima, the Commissioner of the Financial Services Agency (FSA), joined the Ministry of Finance (MOF) in 1985 and took up his current post in July 2021 after having served as General Manager of the Japan External Trade Organization Vancouver, Director of the Debt Management Policy Division of the Financial Bureau at MOF, Deputy Director-General of the Planning and Coordination Bureau (responsible for financial markets and exchanges), Vice Commissioner for Strategy Development and Management Bureau, Director-General of the Policy and Markets Bureau, Director-General of the Strategy Development and Management Bureau, etc at FSA.
Investing and Trading
The debut of the first bitcoin futures ETF drew big demand, but retail investors mostly sat out, research firm says
Carla Mozée – Business Insider
The first bitcoin-futures exchange-traded fund logged near-record high demand on its launch day but participation by retail investors was lackluster, according to Vanda Research. The ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF, which debuted Tuesday, was the second-most heavily traded fund debut ever, landing turnover of nearly $1 billion with more than 24 million shares exchanged, according to Bloomberg data. ProShares reportedly said its new ETF brought in $570 million in assets in its launch day.
The Next Recession Could Come Courtesy of the Fed; A chaotic pandemic economy is putting central bankers in a precarious spot.
Stephanie Flanders and Michael Sasso – Bloomberg
Central bankers are in a precarious spot in this chaotic pandemic economy. U.S. and U.K. consumers are grousing about rising prices and want some relief. But if government officials give it to them by raising interest rates, they may set back the recovery. It wouldn’t be the first time an errant move by a central bank triggered a recession.
WeWork has Learned Its Lesson From Its IPO Fail. But Have We? Startup founders remain the kings of the cheap money era and unicorn numbers have exploded. SPACs add fuel to an incendiary mix.
Chris Bryant – Bloomberg
Two years ago, a failed initial public offering made WeWork Inc. the poster child for startup excess and corporate governance failure. Today, the shared-office provider finally joins the public markets, having completed a merger with a blank-check firm, BowX Acquisition Corp. Its shares will trade on the New York Stock Exchange and the ticker is, of course, “WE.”
WeWork Set to Go Public via SPAC Deal, Two Years After Failed IPO; Shared-office company has closed locations, renegotiated leases and cut thousands of jobs to reduce expenses during Covid-19
Dave Sebastian – WSJ
The shared-office company WeWork is set to trade publicly Thursday, capping a journey to a listing that included the implosion of its initial public offering in 2019. WeWork is going public through a combination with BowX Acquisition Corp. , a special-purpose acquisition company.
Investors flee gold for cryptocurrencies as inflation worries perk up; Metals fund manager laments ‘zero interest in our strategy’ while bitcoin hits new record
Joe Rennison and Eva Szalay and Henry Sanderson – FT
Investors are dumping gold for cryptocurrencies as inflation picks up, fleeing a metal historically touted as a store of value to buy digital assets little more than a decade old.
Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance
Deepening Energy Crisis Boosts Flurry of Green IPOs in Europe
Swetha Gopinath – Bloomberg
EV firms Volvo Cars, Pod Point, Ebusco tapping busy IPO market; Harmony Energy to use deal proceeds to buy Tesla batteries
Several initial public offering candidates in Europe are emphasizing their potential to help in the transition to a greener future, as the global energy crisis intensifies.
Shunning Fossil Fuels Too Soon May Prove Catastrophic; The truth is that the growth in renewable sources of energy fails to even meet the growth in overall global energy demand.
Richard Cookson – Bloomberg
With the much-hyped United Nations climate summit known as COP26 coming to Scotland at the beginning of November and energy prices leaping from one high to another, you might be forgiven for wondering, whatever your view of climate change, whether attempts to curb the production and use of fossil fuels might just have something to do with their prices rising so vertiginously of late. Not at all, comes the retort from the more evangelical wing of the climate lobby, this latest crisis just shows we need to switch to cleaner energy sources more quickly.
G-20 Leaders Lower Ambitions to ‘Consign Coal to History’
Javier Blas, Chiara Albanese, Ilya Arkhipov, and Alberto Nardelli – Bloomberg
Italy, U.K. have been pushing for broader phase-out of coal; G-20 leaders set to meet Oct. 30-31 in Rome; COP follows after
Group of 20 diplomats have all but given up on their lofty goal of consigning coal to history and are instead closing in on a more modest plan to stop governments funding foreign coal-fired power plants, according to people familiar with the situation.
Girls Who Code Is Getting an ETF as Trio of Do-Good Funds Debut
Peyton Forte – Bloomberg
New York Life’s IndexIQ partners with non-profit organizations; New products also back National Wildlife Federation, Oceana
The Girls Who Code are now the Girls With an ETF. Well, an ETF partner at least. IndexIQ, a New York Life Investment Management company, is launching three new thematic exchange-traded funds on Thursday geared toward socially-conscious investors. Each will partner with a major not-for-profit organization, donating 10% of its management fee to the cause.
How Metals and Mining Companies Are Adapting to a Greener World; BloombergNEF released its first business model transition score for 53 major companies in the sector
Nathaniel Bullard – Bloomberg
The metals and mining sector is a massive resource producer and a massive resource consumer. It exhumes raw materials and transforms them, through energy-intensive processes, into the modern features of our built environment. In so doing, it also creates about a quarter of the reported emissions of the world’s 12,000 largest companies. As with other hard-to-abate sectors like cement production, or marine shipping, significantly lowering the emissions profiles of metals and mining will be crucial to meaningfully decarbonizing the global economy.
Climate Change Makes Drought Recovery Tougher in U.S. West
Adam Beam – AP
Californians rejoiced this week when big drops of water started falling from the sky for the first time in any measurable way since the spring, an annual soaking that heralds the start of the rainy season following some of the hottest and driest months on record.
Cultural carbon capture is on display at Science Museum; Sponsorship of the new climate gallery gives the illusion of serious engagement without the inconvenience of action
Anjana Ahuja – FT
The shades of green offered by upmarket paint purveyor Farrow and Ball run from a pale Vert de Terre to a sumptuous Duck Green. It is tempting to suggest their Green Smoke number for the new climate change gallery announced on Tuesday by the Science Museum in London.
Charting the UK’s path to net zero; Borrowing to fund the energy transition is neither unsustainable nor unfair
The editorial board – FT
When, in 2019, Britain became the first major economy to commit to reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2050 it was also embracing an ambitious, multiyear agenda of economic transformation. On Tuesday, shortly ahead of the landmark COP26 climate conference in Glasgow, it began setting out what that commitment would mean in practice. The strategy is bold in places while lacking in others but overall represents among the most detailed and impressive blueprints unveiled by any government to reduce its emissions.
Rio Tinto aims to spend $7.5bn in push to halve carbon emissions by 2030; Shares in Anglo-Australian miner fall as chief outlines plan
Neil Hume – FT
Rio Tinto’s new chief executive has set out plans to invest $7.5bn over the next nine years to halve the Anglo-Australian miner’s carbon emissions as governments and investors demand more aggressive action on climate change.
Total accused of campaign to play down climate risk from fossil fuels; Research finds French oil major understood link between hydrocarbons and global warming 50 years ago
Tom Wilson – FT
TotalEnergies was aware of the link between fossil fuels and rising global temperatures 50 years ago but worked with other oil majors to play down the risks for at least three decades, according to internal company documents and interviews with former executives.
Barclays Investment Bankers Seize on Deal Boom as Fees Surge
Stefania Spezzati – Bloomberg
Barclays Plc’s bankers made the most of the booming deals market, delivering a record quarter and helping offset more muted earnings in its trading unit. Investment banking fees at the London-based lender soared 59% to 971 million pounds ($1.3 billion), more than double the jump that analysts had expected and mirroring the strong performance of U.S. peers. That helped cushion revenue from a 20% drop in fixed-income trading as the rally that drove profits a year ago petered out.”Investment banking fees in the primary side, whether its advisory, debt capital markets, equity capital markets, we had the highest quarter in the history of Barclays,” Chief Executive Officer Jes Staley said in an interview on Bloomberg TV.
Barclays’ profit more than doubles as investment bank fees surge; Results beat forecasts as impact of pandemic on consumer divisions continues to recede
Stephen Morris – FT
Barclays’ profit more than doubled in the third quarter driven by another strong performance from its investment bank, while the impact of coronavirus on its consumer divisions continued to recede.
UBS Poaches From JPMorgan, Citi for Equities And Markets in ANZ
Nabila Ahmed – Bloomberg
UBS Group AG hired four new people and promoted two others for its equities and research team in Australia and New Zealand, as it continues to rebuild a team raided by rivals in recent months.
Norway Wealth Fund Returns 0.1% After Decline in Stocks
Stephen Treloar – Bloomberg
Norway’s $1.4 trillion sovereign wealth fund, the world’s biggest, returned 0.1% in the third quarter, after its bonds and real estate holdings offset a slight decline in stock portfolio.
ECB pushes banks to boost their post-Brexit operations; Central bank increasingly forceful in demanding lenders move more resources to continent
Laura Noonan and Stephen Morris and Martin Arnold – FT
The European Central Bank is pushing banks to add hundreds of extra staff and billions of extra capital to their post-Brexit operations in continental Europe.
Global finance industry sinks $119bn into companies linked to deforestation; Investigation shows extensive financing activity has continued since Paris accord on global warming
Camilla Hodgson and Stephen Morris – FT
Global banks and asset managers have extended a total of $119bn of financing to 20 major agribusinesses linked to deforestation in the five years since the Paris agreement was brought into force, according to an investigation by the Global Witness campaign group.
Blackstone’s Profit Nearly Doubles; Private-equity giant’s performance was driven by high-growth areas like real estate, tech, logistics and life sciences
Miriam Gottfried – WSJ
Blackstone Inc.’s BX 1.50% net income nearly doubled in the third quarter, driven by strong investment performance for its largest strategies and continued expansion into fast-growing new business lines.
Goldman Sachs cements China presence with acquisition of remaining stake in joint venture; Land grab by major investment banks continues, following a change in Chinese regulation surrounding foreign ownership.
Annabel Smith – The Trade
Goldman Sachs has moved to cement its Chinese presence by acquiring the remaining stake in its local joint venture. The bank confirmed in a statement on 17 October, that the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) had given its approval for it to acquire the remaining equity interest in Goldman Sachs Gao Hua (GSGH) after moving to buy-out its partner following a 17-year joint venture in December last year.
Brazil Stocks Hit World’s Bottom as Bolsonaro Spooks Markets
Vinicius Andrade – Bloomberg
Benchmark Ibovespa index down 6% this year in local currency; Selloff has wiped out $102 billion in value from stock market
Brazil stocks have become the world’s worst-performing so far this year, hit by a combination of sluggish growth, higher rates and fears President Jair Bolsonaro may be about to blow up the country’s finances.
Venezuelans Break Off Flakes of Gold to Pay for Meals, Haircuts
Alex Vasquez and Ezra Fieser – Bloomberg
To fathom the magnitude of Venezuela’s financial collapse, travel southeast from Caracas, past the oil fields and over the Orinoco River, and head deep into the savanna that blankets one of the remotest corners of the country.
Bolsonaro’s Privatization Talk Masks Struggle to Unload Petrobras Refineries; The Brazilian oil giant’s efforts to sell six more fuel plants are hitting a wall, and a looming presidential election will only make it harder.
Mariana Durao and Peter Millard – Bloomberg
For all President Jair Bolsonaro’s recent talk of privatizing Brazil’s crown jewel, oil giant Petrobras has struggled even to unload a handful of refineries. And its chances have never looked worse.
??China’s Guangdong Scraps Fixed Power Prices for Industrial Users
Industrial users must buy power at market prices: document; Shift seen increasing costs for some large manufacturers
China’s southern province of Guangdong, home to Huawei Technologies Co. and vehicle manufacturer Guangzhou Automobile Group Co., is eliminating government-fixed electricity prices for industrial and commercial users, according to a document seen by Bloomberg issued by a local planning agency.
ScottishPower warns of energy market ‘massacre’; all for urgent review of price cap as wholesale spike threatens more supplier collapses
Nathalie Thomas – FT
The head of one of Britain’s biggest utilities has urged UK ministers to urgently review the energy price cap, warning that persistently high wholesale gas prices could trigger an “absolute massacre” in the retail market that could claim another 20 suppliers.
China property bust undercuts talk of new commodity ‘super cycle’; Neither current shortages nor the green transition may deliver the sustained high prices that exporters hope for
Jonathan Wheatley and Michael Pooler – FT
It is almost exactly 20 years since China joined the World Trade Organization as a $1tn economy. Since then, China’s economy has grown to almost $15tn, unleashing a wave of prosperity in developing countries that helped lift more than 1bn people out of poverty.
Sinopec signs huge LNG deals with US producer Venture Global; Agreement to buy as much as 5m tonnes a year will more than double Chinese imports of the fuel from America
Primrose Riordan, Justin Jacobs and Derek Brower – FT
China’s imports of American natural gas will more than double after state-run companies signed three long-term supply deals with Venture Global LNG, as Beijing looks to the US to help secure its energy future.
German Bild Tabloid Scandal Is More Than a Local Affair; Axel Springer can no longer say it’s just another German company when it comes to having guidelines on workplace relationships.
Chris Hughes – Bloomberg
Axel Springer SE’s excuse for lacking clear guidelines on workplace relationships in 2021 is that the same can be said for “most German companies.” But now that the Berlin-based publisher has bought influential U.S. peer Politico, it can no longer benchmark itself against only the local crowd. Its decision to terminate the employment of the editor of its best-selling Bild tabloid this week can be seen as tied to its growing international ambition.