What Worries Corporate Executives? Covid, Covid and More Covid

Oct 27, 2021

First Read

$54,006/$300,000 (18%)
Eileen Flaherty


JLN Reinforces Work From Home Strategy With Decision To Close CBOT Building Office
John Lothian – Publisher – JLN

John Lothian News continues to go strong during the pandemic, but we have decided to close our office in the CBOT Building when our lease is up at the end of the year. The JLN team will continue to work from home and venture into Chicago when opportunity or the need arises, but we will have no permanent presence downtown after the first of the year. JLN has had its own CBOT offices since 2010 after incubating the firm in the offices of my former employer, The Price Futures Group.

JLN has worked remotely for years before the pandemic, starting with former MarketsWiki co-founder Jon Matte operating from Portland, Oregon, and then Norway. Patrick Lothian leads our video-editing and marketing operations from Ohio and now Tennessee. We recently hired a Northwestern University master’s degree graduate who had moved back to Alabama.

To read the rest of this announcement, click HERE.


Hits & Takes
John Lothian & JLN Staff

Have you registered for the in-person FIA EXPO in Chicago? JLN will be there. Check out this very slick video FIA produced to encourage you to come to EXPO.

JLN is pleased today to welcome Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited (HKEX) as a sponsor of MarketsWiki and John Lothian News. HKEX recently launched the MSCI A 50 contract, which saw $1 billion in notional trading its first week, and is making a push to attract global market participants to its exchange and products.

Eurex and Qontigo are holding a webcast on Thursday, October 28, from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. CDT titled, “The Impact of DAX Reform 2020/2021.” The webcast will explore the expansion of the DAX from 20 to 40 constituents and the reduction in the number of MDAX constituents from 60 to 50. Speakers include Veronika Kylburg, associate principal, product R&D benchmark indices, Qontigo and Tobias Ehinger, senior vice president, product design equity and index, Eurex. The moderator is Eurex Head of Marketing Cornelius Trenz. For more information and to register, click HERE.

The quote of the day comes from a Bloomberg story titled, “Singapore Minister Sees a Place for Crypto in Asia Finance Hub.” Tharman Shanmugaratnam, the chairman of the Monetary Authority of Singapore, said Wednesday at the Asia Financial Markets Forum, “There may be a role for crypto in future finance that extends beyond pure speculation and illicit finance.” I believe that is what is called a backhanded compliment. — Bloomberg

SEC Chairman Garry Gensler and his team shot another video in the “Office Hours with Gary Gensler” video series and posted it to Twitter. He talked about climate change and finance. You can see it HERE.

Abbey Wilkins is now a senior commodities and futures & OTC broker at Sweet Futures, LLC, She was previously with Straits Financial. At Straits she started as an executive assistant and moved up to multimedia manager, where she helped plan events and created marketing content. Congratulations to Abbey on the career move.

Eileen Flaherty, veteran derivatives lawyer, former CFTC Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight director and author of “The Perilous Step,” is the latest to give to the JLN MarketsWiki Education GoFundMe campaign. Her contribution of $200 gives her a 50/50 chance right now of winning the JLN Productions raffle for 5 minutes of video production. Thank you to Eileen and all who have given and all who have yet to give. Support our efforts to preserve industry history and educate the next generation of market participants and professionals by supporting our GoFundMe campaign.

Don’t forget, JLN is running a survey to see how other firms are managing the remote work environment. We ask you and your managers to fill out the survey and let us know how your firm was prepared for the pandemic and how it has managed it and its employees since it began. You can take the survey with this LINK. Help us with this survey so we can all better understand the impact the pandemic has had on our work lives.

Have a great day and stay safe and treat people the same way you want to be treated: with respect, equality and justice.~JJL


The much-awaited 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference, or COP26, starts this weekend on October 31 in Glasgow. If you’d like a briefing on getting to net zero by 2050, Fortune is hosting a free webinar on some of the issues today at 12 p.m. ET with the publication’s CEO, Alan Murray, and Rich Lesser, Global Chair of Boston Consulting Group. Registration information is here.~SC

In somewhat related news, Morningstar Indexes today launched its new EU Climate Indexes, the latest in its line of ESG-related products. The company says the series will help investors track companies’ progress toward meeting “EU Climate Transition Benchmarks (CTB) and Paris-Aligned Benchmarks (PAB) requirements.” In a release, Morningstar says the sector needs better data, quoting a recent ESG survey of global asset managers by the Index Industry Association that found 63% of investment companies cite a lack of quantitative data as a challenge to ESG implementation. More details are here.~SC


The History of Financial Futures: Doug Harris Provides an Insider’s Look at Industry Innovation

Douglas E. Harris not only can talk about The History of Financial Futures, he was a part of its development.

In this video interview with John Lothian, Harris traces his beginnings in the industry back to 1975, when he began work as an associate for the then-small law firm Baer Marks & Upham and was assigned helping exchanges including Comex determine what rules it would need to file to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, then in its infancy.

Watch the video »



Introducing Nanos by Cboe, Smaller and Simpler Options Designed for Retail Traders
Cboe Global Markets, Inc.
Designed to make options trading more accessible for the retail trader;- Lower-price, simple tool for exploring options trading strategies; Cash-settled (no delivery of physical shares) and European-style (no early exercise); Launching Nanos S&P 500 in first-quarter 2022, expanding S&P 500 Index options suite
Cboe Global Markets, Inc. (Cboe: CBOE), a leading provider of global market infrastructure and tradable products, today announced plans to launch Nanos by Cboe, a first of its kind options contract designed to simplify options trading. Nanos by Cboe help make options trading accessible for the everyday retail trader, allowing them to start small, learn as they go and grow their trading confidence.

***** Cboe goes small to go big. The Small Exchange and FairX concept keeps getting competition and affirmation.~JJL


U.S. Bank to Leverage ICE ETF Hub for Seamless Access to ETF Primary Market
Intercontinental Exchange
U.S. Bank announced today that it will leverage Intercontinental Exchange’s (NYSE: ICE) ICE ETF Hub to offer its customer base seamless electronic access to the ETF primary market. ICE ETF Hub, which recently surpassed $1 trillion in notional create/redeem orders, is an industry-wide, open architecture, technology solution, offering a standardized and simplified process for the creation and redemption of ETF shares.

***** Big news, not small news, from ICE on its ETF Hub.~JJL


Chicken Executives Face Prison in Denver Price-Fixing Trial
Bob Van Voris and Michael Hirtzer – Bloomberg
After years of rumors and allegations, Big Chicken is now on trial. A group of 10 executives and employees of top U.S. poultry companies — including two former chief executives — are facing criminal antitrust charges in a trial getting underway this week in Denver. They face prison and million-dollar fines if convicted for fixing prices and rigging bids over nearly a decade.

***** These guys could have a future as namesake FCM owners.~JJL


U.S. Dairy Cows Too Expensive to Feed, Causing Herd to Plummet
Elizabeth Elkin – Bloomberg
The number of dairy cows in the U.S. is plunging at a pace not seen in more than a decade, signaling elevated costs for products like butter. The cost of feeding dairy cows has been soaring, said Nate Donnay, director of dairy market insight at StoneX Group. That’s forcing dairy farmers to slash herds. Corn futures in Chicago are up 29% from a year ago and touched an eight-year high back in May.

****** Today we are starting a new program, Adopt a Cow. Get your own dairy cow and help keep the milk flowing.~JJL


‘Meme’ coin seeks to tap crypto craze with London ad barrage; Digital token named after Elon Musk’s dog funds ‘full out marketing assault’ with fee on purchases
Joshua Oliver – FT
A digital token named after Elon Musk’s dog has launched a major advertising campaign on London’s public transport system, funded by a “tax” on new buyers. Adverts with the slogan “Missed Doge? Get Floki” have appeared across Underground stations, trains and buses in the UK capital in recent weeks to drum up enthusiasm around Floki Inu coin.

***** This seems like marketing manipulation to me. Is there a rule against that?~JJL


Tuesday’s Top Three
Our top story Tuesday was the MarketsWiki page for Jennifer Just, the co-founder of Peak6. Second was the Forbes story about Just, This Little-Known Woman Billionaire Built A Fortune Powering Fintech Firms Like SoFi And Webull. Third was SEC Gets Path to Rein In Stablecoins as U.S. Weighs New Rules, from Bloomberg.


MarketsWiki Stats
26,635 pages; 236,101 edits
MarketsWiki Statistics


Lead Stories

What Worries Corporate Executives? Covid, Covid and More Covid
Max Reyes – Bloomberg
Aon finds most of their Top 10 concerns stem from pandemic; Insurance broker labels ESG, climate perils as underrated
Risks related to Covid-19 and the economic havoc it wreaked across the globe are keeping corporate executives up at night. That’s the takeaway from an Aon Plc survey of 2,344 risk managers, chief risk officers and chief financial officers conducted in the second quarter. Cyber attacks were the No. 1 most-cited hazard, and more than half of the Top 10 risks executives say they face today are tied to the pandemic, according to survey results released Tuesday.

Direxion Plans U.S. ETF That Shorts Bitcoin Futures and Warns of Risks
Joanna Ossinger – Bloomberg
Fund would follow ProShares, Valkyrie ETFs backed by futures; Short selling, volatility, liquidity cited as potential risks
The U.S. Bitcoin-related ETF industry may hit another milestone with an offering that shorts crypto futures. The Direxion Bitcoin Strategy Bear exchange-traded fund would offer managed short exposure to CME Bitcoin futures contracts, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission dated Tuesday. This comes after the ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF and Valkyrie Bitcoin Strategy ETF, both of which are backed by futures, made their debuts last week.

Libor Transition Vexes Collateralized Loan Obligations Market; While some parties have moved swiftly to adopt a replacement for the interest-rate benchmark, low-rated borrowers and CLOs have been slower to adapt
Julia-Ambra Verlaine – WSJ
The global $1 trillion market for collateralized loan obligations is lagging behind in the transition away from the London interbank offered rate. While some companies, lenders and markets have moved swiftly to adopt a replacement for the scandal-marred interest-rate benchmark, low-rated borrowers have been slower to adapt. That is causing headaches for managers of collateralized loan obligations—pools of low-rated corporate loans bundled together into securities.

Robinhood’s Crypto Business Is the Tail That Wags the Doge; Robinhood experienced a net decline in funded accounts, but the real revenue story was in crypto trading
Telis Demos – WSJ
The headline numbers for Robinhood Markets’s HOOD 1.44% third quarter and its near-term outlook won’t help the stock. Still, it isn’t all bad news. Robinhood had a net decline in cumulative funded accounts from the second quarter to the third, from 22.5 million to 22.4 million. That is a big change from recent trends of explosive growth, when millions of accounts were on net added per quarter. New funded accounts were still about 670,000 in the third quarter, but about 870,000 accounts were “churned”—or left without funds for a while. A churned account isn’t necessarily a permanently lost one. About 110,000 accounts were “resurrected” from that status in the third quarter. But for now, evidently some users don’t mind being dormant.

Europe’s Push to Loosen Russian Influence on Gas Prices Bites Back; A move to ditch oil-linked gas contracts paid off when gas was in ample supply but will cost EU members an estimated $30 billion this year
James Marson and Joe Wallace – WSJ
For years, the European Union tried to loosen Russia’s iron grip on its gas supplies by fostering a competitive import market. Those efforts have boomeranged this year as supplies run short, setting off an energy crisis across the continent. European energy ministers met Tuesday to address the shortage, which is stinging homeowners and lifting prices for goods from metals to fertilizers. But there is little they can do to boost supplies immediately, and Russia isn’t helping.

Moody’s warns of ‘systemic risks’ in private credit industry; Rating agency points to opacity and eroding standards among risk factors
Robin Wigglesworth, Joe Rennison and Antoine Gara – FT
The burgeoning private credit industry of lending to buyout groups has grown to about $1tn, but opacity, eroding standards and the difficulty in trading these slices of debt pose “systemic risks”, according to rating agency Moody’s.

The Risks and Rewards of Playing Chicken With China; China has ways to confound speculators betting on Evergrande contagion—thanks to a broader, murkier regulatory toolkit than most foreign investors know
Nathaniel Taplin – WSJ
Evergrande, the heavily indebted Chinese property developer spooking global markets, appears to be running out of money and customers. Nonetheless it surprised creditors by paying off $83.5 million of interest on a dollar bond last Thursday. Meanwhile it needs to make another $45 million payment by this Friday, and its dollar bonds are still trading at around 20 cents on the dollar, implying a very high probability of default or deep haircuts.

Saudi Deal With Euroclear to Allow Foreigners Access to Debt
Reema Al Othman – Bloomberg
Saudi Arabia reached an agreement with one of the world’s biggest bond clearing systems to settle transactions in its debt market. The deal between the kingdom’s Securities Depository Center Company, known as Edaa, and Brussels-based Euroclear Bank will give foreign investors access to the sukuk and bond market within the Saudi Exchange.

Pandemic Hit to Global Employment Is Much Worse Than Anticipated
Catherine Bosley – Bloomberg
The number of working hours lost due to the Covid-19 crisis will be “significantly higher” than projected just a few months ago, according to the International Labor Organization. In what it termed a “dramatic revision,” the Geneva-based group now estimates that global hours worked this year will be 4.3% below their pre-pandemic level, the equivalent of 125 million full-time jobs. Africa, the Americas and Arab States were the regions that experienced the biggest declines.

U.S. Takes Bitcoin Mining Crown After China Crackdown; More than a third of the global computing power dedicated to mining bitcoin is now drawn from miners in the U.S.
Caitlin Ostroff – WSJ
The U.S. is fast becoming the new global hub for bitcoin mining. After a government crackdown in China, many miners are betting on reliable access to energy and a more predictable regulatory environment in the U.S. More than a third of the global computing power dedicated to mining bitcoin is now drawn from machines in the U.S., up from less than a fifth last spring, according to data from the University of Cambridge.

Singapore Minister Sees a Place for Crypto in Asia Finance Hub
Krystal Chia – Bloomberg
Regulated stablecoins will have useful role: Tharman; Singapore has warned public about risks of trading crypto
Cryptocurrencies have a place in Singapore’s financial sector if these digital assets are regulated, according to the chairman of the nation’s central bank. “There may be a role for crypto in future finance that extends beyond pure speculation and illicit finance,” Tharman Shanmugaratnam, the chairman of the Monetary Authority of Singapore, said Wednesday at the Asia Financial Markets Forum. Stablecoins, for example, can have a role in traditional payment systems, though these digital assets need to be regulated for illicit finance activities including anti-money laundering, he said.

ETFs Are a Bad Way to Bet on Bitcoin; Why are traders flocking to a bitcoin ETF when they can hold the cryptocurrency directly? The answer comes down to trust
James Mackintosh – WSJ
Why are traders flocking to a bitcoin ETF when they can hold the cryptocurrency directly and avoid the high costs? The answer comes down to trust.

FICC bilateral trading? Not enough incentive for the buy-side; As research suggests multi-dealer platforms are increasingly costly for market participants, Annabel Smith explores whether this has encouraged FICC traders to move away from multi-dealer towards bilateral trading.
Annabel Smith – The Trade
Costs incurred on multi-dealer platforms, non-exchange venues which allow traders to send request for quote (RFQ) orders to multiple liquidity providers, are increasingly encouraging buy- and sell-side firms trading fixed income, currencies and commodities (FICC) to trade bilaterally, a study has suggested.

Why This Billionaire Is Worried About Green Investing; The world is facing an energy credit crunch in part because of Wall Street’s E.S.G. focus, warned Steve Schwarzman of Blackstone.
Andrew Ross Sorkin, Sarah Kessler, Stephen Gandel, Michael J. de la Merced, Lauren Hirsch and Ephrat Livni – NY Times
Are do-gooders driving the energy shortage?
Steve Schwarzman, Blackstone’s billionaire co-founder, became the latest financier to sound the alarm about an energy crunch. (The most recent sign: U.S. oil prices hit $85 a barrel this week, a seven-year high.) Speaking at the Future Investment Initiative conference in Saudi Arabia, he warned that an energy shortage could lead to “real unrest” across the world — and put forward a provocative culprit.

Nearly Half Of America’s Richest Billionaires Have Fortunes In These Two Industries
Rachel Sandler – Forbes
Sam Bankman-Fried of FTX photographed in March 2021. VIRGILE SIMON BERTRAND FOR FORBES
Billionaires get rich doing all sorts of things, from selling roofing supplies to making energy drinks. But some industries are more likely than others to put someone on The Forbes 400 ranking of America’s richest people. So Forbes poured over this year’s list to rank the sectors in which Forbes 400 members have built their fortunes.

MIT expert on work says any boss who thinks employees will return to offices is dreaming; A few companies will insist on a return to the workplace — to their detriment, says Thomas Malone
Steven Zeitchik – Washington Post
Thomas Malone knows a thing or two about the future of work — he literally wrote the book about it. That was back in 2004, of course, when times were different and corona was just a questionable beer. But the tome — “The Future of Work: How the New Order of Business Will Shape Your Organization, Your Management Style and Your Life” — was plenty prescient, describing a decentralized work world enabled by sharper digital communication.


Merck Signs Pact to Expand Access to Promising Covid Pill
James Paton – Bloomberg
Drugmaker and Medicines Patent Pool reach licensing accord; UN-backed group hopes it will spur other companies to act
Merck & Co. reached a licensing agreement aimed at widening access to its promising Covid pill, a pact health advocates hope will spur other pharmaceutical companies to act. The accord with the United Nations-backed Medicines Patent Pool will help make the antiviral therapy available in more than 100 low- and middle-income nations if it gains approval, allowing generic-drug companies to apply for licenses to make the experimental drug, according to a statement Wednesday.

U.K. Serious Covid Cases Hit Levels Last Seen in March
Charles Capel – Bloomberg
The U.K. reported its highest daily death toll from coronavirus since the beginning of March, adding to fears that tighter restrictions might be needed this winter. The number of people hospitalized is also at the highest since that period. Steadily increasing hospitalization and death rates have put pressure on the government to enact its “Plan B,” which could include mandatory face coverings and a recommendation to work from home.

Philippines Is Still the Worst Place to Be in Covid Even as Cases Ease
Andreo Calonzo – Bloomberg
The Philippines remains bottom of Bloomberg’s Covid Resilience Ranking of the best and worst places to be amid the pandemic in October, as vaccinations and reopening lag despite its outbreak easing.

England’s fall in infection rates raises hopes of avoiding ‘Plan B’; Shift in Whitehall mood as latest data show week-on-week decline in coronavirus cases
Sebastian Payne and Oliver Barnes – FT
Ministers are cautiously optimistic they can avoid introducing new coronavirus restrictions in England this winter, according to several senior government insiders. The mood has shifted across Whitehall in recent days as hopes rise that “Plan B” restrictions, including the mandatory wearing of face masks, will not be needed with the latest data showing a week-on-week decline in infections, while the Covid-19 vaccine booster programme is also gathering pace.

Vietnam takes Sinopharm vaccines to ease Ho Chi Minh City’s woes; Pandemic offers Beijing opportunity to firm up ties with strategically important neighbour
Tomoya Onishi – FT
The Covid-19 pandemic has caused huge disruptions and grief in Vietnam and badly hit the economy. In politics, it might produce a side effect of improving the country’s bumpy relationship with its giant neighbour and occasional nemesis, China.

Promising Covid-19 Pill Licensed to U.N.-Backed Nonprofit to Increase Global Supplies; Merck is licensing molnupiravir to a group that will pick drugmakers to make the pill for low- and middle-income countries
Jared S. Hopkins and Betsy McKay – WSJ
Merck MRK 0.72% & Co. will license a promising Covid-19 drug to a United Nations-backed nonprofit to provide more supplies to low- and middle-income countries. The Medicines Patent Pool, which aims to expand poor countries’ access to drugs, will work with multiple drugmakers to produce molnupiravir for 105 nations, including Pakistan, Cambodia and all of Africa, the company and nonprofit said Wednesday.

It Turns Out Paying People to Take the Covid-19 Vaccine Doesn’t Really Work; Recent evidence suggests financial incentives, public-health messaging have done little to boost vaccination rates among those already vaccine-hesitant
Talal Ansari – WSJ
Financial incentives, public-health messages and other tactics used by state and local governments and employers to encourage people to get the Covid-19 vaccine didn’t have a noticeable impact on vaccination rates among those who already were hesitant about getting the shot, new research shows.

We Need to Plan for a World Where Covid Never Goes Away
Katherine Eban – NY Times
Ms. Eban is an investigative journalist; a contributing editor at Vanity Fair, where she covers Covid-19; and the author of “Bottle of Lies: The Inside Story of the Generic Drug Boom.” On May 14, I went for a jog, amazed at my newfound freedom. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had just signed off on the vaccinated shedding their masks outdoors. In Brooklyn’s Prospect Park, on a cloudless spring day, I pondered what seemed like a miraculous paradigm shift: Apparently, I no longer had to fear that my fellow joggers would kill me, or I them.

Pfizer Covid Vaccine for Younger Kids Wins FDA Panel’s Backing
Fiona Rutherford and Robert Langreth – Bloomberg
Signoff sets stage for expected authorization in coming days; Shots for kids, boosters could recharge U.S. immunization push
The benefits of a Covid-19 vaccine for young children made by Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE exceed its risks, according to a panel of U.S. experts, putting a shot for the youngest school-age children on track for a likely clearance.

Exchanges, OTC and Clearing

CME Group Inc. Reports Third-Quarter 2021 Financial Results
CME Group
CME Group Inc. (NASDAQ: CME) today reported financial results for the third quarter of 2021.
The company reported revenue of $1.1 billion and operating income of $614 million for the third quarter of 2021. Net income was $927 million and diluted earnings per share were $2.58. On an adjusted basis, net income was $574 million and diluted earnings per share were $1.60. Financial results presented on an adjusted basis for the third quarter of 2021 and 2020 exclude certain items, which are detailed in the reconciliation of non-GAAP results.
“We saw robust volume growth in Q3 as clients continued to manage a variety of risks during these times of ongoing economic uncertainty,” said CME Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Terry Duffy. “Average daily volume grew 14% year over year during the quarter, led by double-digit growth in interest rates, energy and options products, as well as strong non-U.S. volumes, which increased 13% to 5 million contracts per day.”

FTSE Digital Asset Index Series (in association with Digital Asset Research)
FTSE Russell
The FTSE Digital Asset Index Series provides index coverage of cryptographically secured digital instruments in the market. The indices were developed in response to investor demand for benchmarks to accurately and methodically capture performance of digital assets, allowing for the more seamless integration into traditional portfolio analysis and processes.

Nasdaq Commodities Welcomes Engelhart Commodities Trading Partners
Nasdaq Commodities
Nasdaq Commodities is pleased to announce that Engelhart Commodities Trading Partners has joined Nasdaq’s European Commodities market. Engelhart Commodities Trading Partners is an international trading firm founded in 2013 by BTG Pactual. With a global reach of 13 offices in six countries and over 250 employees, Engelhart is currently in a strong position, having grown its capital base and significantly invested in research and trading personnel. Engelhart is increasing its focus on renewable energy and supporting the global shift to decarbonisation and Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) investing.

Waga Energy lists on Euronext Paris
EUR110 million raised; Market capitalisation of EUR448.8 million; TechShare alumni and French Tech Green20 labelled company; 166th listing on Euronext in 2021
Euronext today congratulates Waga Energy, a European specialist in the production of biomethane from landfill gas, on its listing on Compartment B of Euronext’s regulated market in Paris (ticker code: WAGA).

Quarterly Results For The Nine Months Ended 30 September 2021

Invesco Expands QQQ Innovation Suite to Include Two ESG ETF Offerings; Building on the QQQ Innovation Suite’s year of success, Invesco and Nasdaq introduce more choices for investors looking to personalize their access to Nasdaq-listed companies
Invesco Ltd. (NYSE: IVZ), a leading global asset management firm, announced today the expansion of the Invesco QQQ Innovation Suite with the introduction of two new Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) ETF offerings. The launch of Invesco ESG NASDAQ 100 ETF (QQMG) and Invesco ESG NASDAQ Next Gen 100 ETF (QQJG) advances the firm’s goal of offering investors the benefit of personalizing their exposure to the innovative companies listed on The Nasdaq Stock Market.

Cboe Global Markets Declares Fourth-Quarter 2021 Dividend
Cboe Global Markets, Inc.
Cboe Global Markets, Inc. (Cboe: CBOE), a leading provider of global market infrastructure and tradable products, today announced its Board of Directors has declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.48 per share of common stock for the fourth quarter of 2021. The fourth-quarter 2021 dividend is payable on December 15, 2021, to stockholders of record as of November 30, 2021.

Japan Exchange Group, Inc. and Consolidated Subsidiaries Consolidated financial results for the six months ended September 30, 2021 (Based on IFRS), unaudited

Notice of Revision to Earnings Forecast and Dividend Forecast
We hereby announce that the consolidated earnings forecast and dividend forecast for the fiscal year
ending March 31, 2022 disclosed on April 28, 2021 have been revised as follows.

Publication of Action Program for Strengthening the Functions of the Cash Equity Market
From the perspective of responding to changes in the environment surrounding the market and diversifying investors’ needs, as well as further improving resilience, convenience for market users and international competitiveness, we established the Working Group for Strengthening the Functions of the Cash Equity Market in May 2021 and discussed with market participants. Based on the discussions in the Working Group, we compiled the Action Program for Strengthening the Functions of the Cash Equity Market, and publish it as follows.

Overview of Earnings for Q2 FY2021
Japan Exchange Group, Inc.

Borsa Istanbul Joins The Sustainable Stock Exchanges Initiative Derivatives Network As A Founding Member


Introducing Barchart for Excel – Barchart Launches Excel Service to Unlock the Power of Barchart.com
Barchart, a leading provider of market data and trading technology to active traders and investors, announces the launch of Barchart for Excel. Barchart for Excel is a Microsoft Excel add-in that allows users to access extensive sets of price, technical, and fundamental market data across stocks, options, futures, currencies and crypto inside the flexible and powerful environment of Microsoft Excel. In addition, Barchart.com website users can seamlessly access their saved data such as Watchlists, Portfolios and Custom Views inside of Excel. Barchart’s popular Lists, such as Today’s Top Stocks, Unusual Options Activity and Most Active Futures are also available within Excel.

The Age of AI and Our Human Future — a technological triple threat; Three respected authors — Henry Kissinger, Eric Schmidt and Daniel Huttenlocher — argue artificial intelligence is our biggest foe yet
John Thornhill – FT
When the theoretical physicist Robert Oppenheimer witnessed the first nuclear weapons test in the New Mexico desert in 1945, he famously invoked a line from the Hindu scripture the Bhagavad Gita: “Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.”

APIs Help FIs Consumerize the Business Banking Experience
Manual B2B payment processes were already lengthy, costly endeavors before the global health crisis, but the frictions associated with them only deepened in its aftermath. Companies that were previously reluctant to upgrade decades-old processes raced to upgrade them to digital channels in increasingly higher figures, with one study finding the pandemic accelerated businesses’ digital adoption by as many as five years.


Hackers-for-hire are biggest cybersecurity threat – EU agency
Foo Yun Chee – Reuters
Hackers-for-hire emerged as the biggest threat to online security in the last 15 months, with the COVID-19 pandemic and home working creating opportunities for cybercriminals, EU cybersecurity agency ENISA said in its annual report on Wednesday.

Cybersecurity Awareness Month highlights need for workers
Chloe Teboe – NBC News Center Maine
October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month, dedicated to bringing attention to the importance of staying safe and secure online. A large part of that effort is made possible through the cybersecurity workforce, but those involved in the field say there’s a big need to fill positions, as the world becomes increasingly digital.

Cybersecurity Awareness Continues
Abyde – JDSupra
Cybersecurity Awareness Month is wrapping up (believe it or not it’s almost Halloween, if you’ve lost track of the days this year like we have), but as the month ends the protections and measures you have in place to prevent a cyberattack should remain in full force.
Just a quick glance at our HIPAA news page shows a growing list of recent HIPAA enforcement efforts, many stemming from cyberattacks that could have been avoided. Couple that with growing cyber threats during COVID-19 and you have yourself a pretty good idea of why cybersecurity should stay top of mind for months to come. We know that the word ‘cybersecurity’ can be a little vague – and even daunting – so here’s a recap of the latest and greatest threats to watch out for:

Why Crowdstrike (NASDAQ:CRWD) is a Monster Cybersecurity Stock
Sean Sechler – Entrepreneur
It’s easy to recognize the growth potential in top cybersecurity stocks like Crowdstrike Holdings (NASDAQ: CRWD), as these companies are providing one of the most important services in the entire tech sector. With so many enterprises pursuing digital transformations, millions of workers handling their tasks remotely, and consumers of today dealing with most of their finances online, it’s safe to say that cyber threats are a concern that can impact everyone. The rise of cybercrime has led to plenty of new opportunities for businesses that can help to protect critical data from security compromises, and this trend should only continue in the coming years.

U.S. Bans China Telecom Over National Security Concerns; FCC says company is subject to Chinese government’s control
Dan Strumpf – WSJ
The Federal Communications Commission revoked the license that allows China’s largest telecom operator to do business in the U.S., citing national security concerns, dealing the latest in a series of blows against major Chinese businesses in the country.


Bakkt Shares Triple on Mastercard, Crypto Service Agreements
Vildana Hajric – Bloomberg
Bakkt Holdings Inc., the cryptocurrencies firm that spun off from Intercontinental Exchange earlier this year, tripled after it announced agreements with Mastercard Inc. and fintech firm Fiserv Inc.

Some Are Betting on State-of-the-Art Mining Machines as Bitcoin (BTC) Breaks New Price Ground
Jad Malaeb – Benzinga
As Bitcoin breaks the $60,000 mark, millions of crypto miners are reaping the rewards of their labor, and millions of others are joining the chase. One such entrant is OLB Group (NASDAQ: OLB). Joining the likes of Marathon Digital Holdings (NASDAQ: MARA), Bit Digital (NASDAQ: BTBT), Hut 8 Mining Corp. (NASDAQ: HUT), Riot Blockchain (NASDAQ: RIOT) and Canaan Inc. (NASDAQ: CAN), OLB Group is developing a state-of-the-art, mining-machine line to capitalize on the crypto surge.

Bitcoin Is Still Concentrated in Few Hands, Study Finds
Emily Graffeo – Bloomberg
Bitcoin’s surging popularity hasn’t changed one of its original attributes. Its ownership is still concentrated in just a few hands. The top 10,000 individual investors in Bitcoin control about one-third of the cryptocurrency in circulation, according to a study by the National Bureau of Economic Research.

Canada Seen as Model for How Australia Crypto ETFs Could Develop
Georgina McKay – Bloomberg
Industry says A$500 million Bitcoin ETF possible in Australia; Cosmos, BetaShares set to launch crypto-stocks ETFs this year
Canada provides a model for how Australia’s exchange-traded fund sector could expand to offer products investing in Bitcoin, according to fund manager BetaShares. The Canadian experience suggests a Bitcoin ETF with assets of about A$500 million ($376 million) is possible in Australia, Alistair Mills, director of institutional business and capital markets at BetaShares, said in a webinar in Sydney Wednesday.

Cryptocurrency trading slump drags down Robinhood revenues; Shares in retail brokerage drop 10% in after-hours trading as user growth slows
Madison Darbyshire – FT
Robinhood showed signs that its once-booming throng of retail investors are cooling to the online brokerage, reporting that its user growth plateaued and cryptocurrency trading stalled in the last quarter.

Crypto Fever Could Put Financial Advisers in a Bind; Clients can be counted on to exert pressure to include digital currencies in their portfolios but then look to place blame for any losses.
By Nir Kaissar – Bloomberg
For financial advisers, cryptocurrencies just might be internet 2.0. Many advisers I know who were active during the dot-com mania in the 1990s have described the experience this way: “Clients wanted internet stocks and tech IPOs. If I gave them what they wanted, they could lose money. If I didn’t, I could lose a client.”


COP26 Doesn’t Have to Be a Summit of Slogans; Despite the challenges of pulling off a successful summit, there are reasons for optimism in the fight against climate change.
Therese Raphael – Bloomberg
It’s no wonder Boris Johnson is trying to manage expectations for the United Nations’ COP26 climate summit in Glasgow. There are risks in hosting the most important global confab the world has seen in a long time. Key guests may cancel, complain or renege on their promises. Sudden events could intervene.

How Russia and Belarus Are Weaponizing Migration; A new type of hybrid warfare is developing as Minsk and Moscow traffic refugees between the Middle East and the European Union.
Andreas Kluth – Bloomberg
It appears that the dictator of Minsk and his overlord in Moscow are waging a coordinated form of hybrid warfare against western Europe. Such tactics, of course, aren’t new to Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko or his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin. What’s novel is how unfathomably callous and evil these have become.

Failure of Trickle-Down Abenomics Is Top Issue for Japan Voters; Prime Minister Kishida is touting a “new capitalism” but is short on details of how he’ll balance growth and more equitable distribution of economic gains.
Yuko Takeo – Bloomberg
As Japan heads into a national election on Oct. 31, concerns over inequality are taking center stage. In a country that once defined itself by the slogan “100 million people, all middle class,” the pandemic has shined a spotlight on the gaps between the haves and the have-nots. It’s cemented the belief among many Japanese that the trickle-down economics of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and some of his predecessors has eroded living standards for the majority, while a few rode a wave of gains from soaring asset prices.

What is the least we need from COP26? If global carbon emissions are to fall quickly, negotiators must bear the following in mind
Martin Wolf – FT
What pledges must be made by the parties meeting at COP26 in Glasgow if there is to be a good chance of keeping the increase in temperatures above pre-industrial levels to less than 1.5°C, as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change recommends? The answer, as I argued last week, is that they must be much more ambitious: above all, they need to cut emissions far faster.

Draghi’s presidency choice may temper investor enthusiasm for Italy; Former ECB chief has transformed perceptions of his country but may not be premier for much longer
Miles Johnson – FT
The last time Italy captured the attention of international speculators was in 2018 when hedge funds queued up to make huge bets against the country’s government debt following the election of an anti-euro populist coalition.

Why Jay Powell has been a ‘dangerous man’ at the Fed; Central bank chair’s support for deregulation has weakened the financial system
Dennis Kelleher of Better Markets via FT
In a recent hearing, Senator Elizabeth Warren told US Federal Reserve chairman Jay Powell that he is “a dangerous man” and that she would not support his renomination to head the central bank. Warren said deregulation supported by Powell over the past four years has undermined the financial stability of the banking system. I believe that is an accurate description. Powell’s actions have moved the US closer to future financial crises and bailouts funded by taxpayers, as happened in 2008.


Why it could be tough for the SEC to ban payment for order flow
Alexis Keenan – Yahoo Finance
Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Gary Gensler said during Yahoo Finance’s All Markets Summit on Monday that the agency is exploring avenues to rein in payment for order flow, a practice increasingly driving revenue for brokerage firms and retail trading platforms that offer commission-free trades. Gensler’s comments to Yahoo Finance’s Brian Cheung, which echo those made to Barron’s in August, suggest that the agency has legal grounds for imposing such regulation.

Swedish FSA Drops Swedbank Market Abuse Probe
Dominic Chopping – WSJ
Swedbank AB said Tuesday that the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority has dropped its investigation into breaches of European Union market abuse regulations at the bank. The Swedish FSA opened an investigation in September 2020 into suspected breaches of articles 17 and 18 in the European Union’s regulation on market abuse, but it has now closed the investigation without charges.

ASIC quarterly update July to September 2021
ASIC has released its quarterly update for 1 July to 30 September 2021 (REP 704). During the quarter, ASIC focused on providing industry with regulatory guidance, maintaining market integrity, and targeting enforcement action to deter misconduct in support of our vision for a fair, strong and efficient financial system. All of this was undertaken in the face of particularly difficult circumstances caused by the Delta variant of COVID-19.

Surveillance of investment switching by super fund executives identifies concerns with trustees’ conflicts arrangements
An ASIC surveillance about personal investment switching by directors and senior executives of superannuation trustees has identified concerns with trustees’ management of conflicts of interest. ASIC looked at a sample of 23 trustees (including trustees of industry and retail funds), and focused on conduct during the time of increased market volatility arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.

FINRA Announces Closure of the OTC Bulletin Board; Effective Date: November 8, 2021
On November 8, 2021, FINRA will cease operation of the OTC Bulletin Board (OTCBB)—a FINRA-operated inter-dealer quotation system—and delete the OTCBB-related rules from the FINRA rulebook.

SEC Obtains Asset Freeze and Other Relief in Halting Penny Stock Scheme on Twitter
The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that it filed an emergency action, and obtained an injunction and asset freeze, against Steven M. Gallagher for allegedly committing securities fraud through a long running scheme to manipulate stocks using Twitter.

SEC Issues Agendas for October 28 and November 3 Meetings of the Asset Management Advisory Committee
The Securities and Exchange Commission today released the agendas for the Oct. 28 and Nov. 3 meetings of the Asset Management Advisory Committee (AMAC). The two meetings will include a discussion of matters in the asset management industry relating to the Evolution of Advice and the Small Advisers and Small Funds Subcommittees, including panel discussions and potential recommendations.

Investing and Trading

PEAK6 InsurTech to Acquire We Insure Group, One of the Fastest Growing Insurance Franchises in the US
PEAK6 today announced that its insurance operations subsidiary, PEAK6 InsurTech, has signed an agreement to acquire We Insure, a rapidly growing independent insurance franchise company. The acquisition will build on PEAK6’s acquisition of National Flood Services in 2018 and pending acquisition of Team Focus to position PEAK6 InsurTech as one of the nation’s leading providers of property and casualty insurance products, with a growing distribution network of franchises across the United States.

Dwindling Oil Supply at U.S. Hub Is Rippling Into Global Markets
Alex Longley and Devika Krishna Kumar – Bloomberg
The culprit behind the latest jump in oil prices isn’t soaring natural gas prices or even OPEC+’s limits on output but rather what is happening at America’s largest oil storage hub in Oklahoma. Traders are fretting that stockpiles in Cushing will fall as low as they physically can. It has sent gauges of market health known as timespreads soaring to their most bullish levels in years, a move that is now spilling over to the global Brent benchmark.

The Bond Market Needs Just One Thing from Lagarde; It wants inflation and interest rate fears calmed. The ECB president has to find the right words to do it.
Marcus Ashworth – Bloomberg
Thursday’s European Central Bank policy meeting was meant to be a snoozer. The important decisions on post-pandemic monetary stimulus aren’t really expected until the quarterly review on Dec. 16. However, the recent sharp rise in short-end yields will probably compel ECB President Christine Lagarde to come up with dovish smooth-talk. It will take all her considerable political skills to calm down the freak-out over inflation, subdue the hawkish council members and convince bond markets she will stay the course on rates.

It’s Becoming Tempting to Try Timing the Bubble Again; With stocks at a record and Tesla topping a $1 trillion valuation, this seductive though near-impossible idea is regaining currency.
John Authers – Bloomberg
If It’s a Bubble, So What?
U.S. stock indexes are at all-time highs again. A Bitcoin will still cost more than $60,000. Tesla Inc. (likely revenue for this year: $51.1 billion) is worth $1 trillion. There’s a mighty plausible case that we have a bubble on our hands. So what?

Microsoft Closes on Apple in Race for World’s Most Valuable Listed Firm
Thyagaraju Adinarayan – Bloomberg
Blowout 1Q lifts Microsoft value, now $80 billion behind Apple; Apple’s results due on Thursday may be race’s next catalyst
A blowout first quarter has brought Microsoft Corp. back into contention in the race for the world’s most-valuable listed company. The software behemoth is less than $80 billion away from dethroning Apple Inc. for the first time since May 2020, based on a 2.8% gain in U.S. premarket trading. If the gains hold in regular trading hours, Microsoft will have a market value of $2.39 trillion compared with $2.47 trillion for Apple.

How to hedge — with care — against a market correction; Short and leveraged trackers can provide some short-term protection
David Stevenson – FT
How can you hedge your investments against downside stock market risk — and possibly even make a profit — if the market tanks? By “tank”, I mean a proper correction of 10 to 30 per cent. It’s worth thinking about, because I believe this scenario is growing more possible, even probable, by the day.

How US funds trade defaulting CDS names; Counterparty Radar: Funds slashed sold positions ahead of 2020’s auctions but post-default Argentina remains a focus
Ben St. Clair – Risk.net
As the number of credit default swap (CDS) auctions was poised to reach near-record highs last year, US mutual funds were sitting on the wrong side of swap positions for many soon-to-be-defaulted entities. In some cases, funds reversed their sold positions ahead of the default – for others it’s less clear. One name in particular, Argentina, has continued to capture the attention of US funds despite its May 2020 default and subsequent CDS auction.

Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance

Morningstar Indexes Introduces EU Climate Indexes
New indexes help investors navigate the transition to a low-carbon, climate-resilient world while meeting EU regulatory requirements, another step in rapid global expansion for Morningstar’s index business
Morningstar Indexes, part of Morningstar, Inc. (Nasdaq: MORN), a leading provider of independent investment research, today introduced the Morningstar EU Climate Indexes to help investors progress toward meeting EU Climate Transition Benchmarks (CTB) and Paris-Aligned Benchmarks (PAB) requirements. This new climate index series from Morningstar allows investors to target companies within a broad market index that are on track for decarbonization in line with Paris accord targets, while minimizing tracking error against the parent index. The series combines Morningstar core benchmarks with carbon emissions data and Carbon Risk Ratings from Sustainalytics, a Morningstar company and leading global provider of ESG research, ratings and data.

Hong Kong Rejects Plea From Global Banks to Scrap Zero-Covid
Cathy Chan – Bloomberg
Government said will continue to liaise with finance industry; City’s primary goal is to open travel with mainland China
Hong Kong’s government said it will stick to its “zero infection” strategy on Covid-19, rebuffing a plea from global banks for the city to ease its strict quarantine policy and set a clearer time-line for a return to normal or risk its status as a center for international business.

Why Financial Firms Can’t Be Climate Change Cops; You can’t force an industry that’s designed to pursue profit to be the arbiter of how we cool the world.
Mark Gilbert – Bloomberg
Which of the following markets would you want your pension fund to have invested in this year? Would it be the one tracking the benchmark index, which has gained about 20%? Or would you prefer it to have bought the subindex that’s climbed by almost three times as much? It sounds obvious — until you dig into the detail.

Big Oil Learns Carbon Scores Matter to Investors; Equinor and TotalEnergies have top “carbon scores” and are doing great. Exxon and Chevron, not as much.
Tim Quinson – Bloomberg
Sometimes things just make sense. According to Bloomberg Intelligence, Norway’s Equinor ASA and TotalEnergies SE of France have the highest “carbon scores” of the seven largest U.S. and European integrated oil companies. These ratings are meant to reflect their progress toward carbon reduction, and that they have the most ambitious targets among their peers.

Sometimes it is easy being green (and lucrative, too); Improving energy efficiency is the financially rewarding way to cut carbon footprints
Brooke Masters – FT
Investors are a bit like toddlers right now, grabbing for the next planet-saving energy technology. But the enthusiasm for offshore wind, electric batteries and green hydrogen has overlooked one very simple fact. We can immediately cut carbon emissions and make money simultaneously simply by doing a better job of deploying the energy we already consume.

Embrace high fossil fuel prices because they are here to stay; Rising energy costs are needed to help curb demand making the transition to a cleaner world easier
Amrita Sen – FT
For some energy watchers, higher prices for natural gas, coal and oil will be “transitory”, to use the language of the US Federal Reserve. They are wrong. High prices are here to stay for years.

China unveils new climate plan as UN chief warns on targets; Guterres says world ‘on track for climate catastrophe’ as Queen ‘regretfully’ bows out of summit
Leslie Hook and Eleanor Olcott and Edward White – FT
China has outlined a plan to hit peak greenhouse gas emissions by the end of the decade, releasing a long-awaited blueprint just days ahead of the UN’s COP26 climate summit in Glasgow.

Australia makes pledge on net zero emissions by 2050 but remains wedded to fossil fuels; Prime minister insists he will not phase out coal or gas production
Camilla Hodgson and Anthony Klan – FT
Australia’s prime minister has unveiled plans to decarbonise the country’s economy by 2050, while insisting it would not phase out the production or use of polluting fossil fuels.

Mining mogul Andrew Forrest blasts blue hydrogen ahead of COP26; Australian billionaire says methane release from gas means it will do nothing for carbon budget
Neil Hume and Nic Fildes – FT
Billionaire mining mogul Andrew Forrest has slammed the oil industry for promoting hydrogen made from natural gas as a clean fuel, saying that it would unleash more of a potent greenhouse gas into the atmosphere and do nothing to combat climate change.

Invesco launches ESG version of $200bn exchange traded fund; Top tech groups get lower weighting in ETF that tracks Nasdaq-100 index
Michael Mackenzie – FT
A new version of one of the world’s biggest exchange traded funds will manage holdings adhering to environmental, social and governance criteria. One feature will be lower weights for some technology titans including Tesla, Facebook and Amazon.

Al Gore launches climate change asset manager; New group has the backing of Microsoft, Ireland’s sovereign wealth fund and foundation linked to Ikea
Attracta Mooney – FT
Al Gore, the former US vice-president, and financier David Blood have set up a new asset manager that they say will turn the traditional investment model “on its head” by prioritising tackling climate change over short-term financial returns.

Reality check for asset managers’ ESG ambitions; Study finds less than 1% of $27 trillion global fund assets comply with Paris Agreement temperature reduction targets.
Anita Hawser – The Trade
Despite an apparent ESG boom in asset management, just 0.5% of total global fund assets are aligned with the Paris climate agreement’s temperature target of ‘well-below 2°C.’ Analysis by non-profit CDP of 16,500 funds with total assets of $27 trillion found that just 158 individual funds were assessed at “well-below 2°C,” while more than 8,000 (62% of assets) were temperature scored at above 2.7°C.

Coal Piles at 24-Year Low at U.S. Utilities on Demand Surge
Will Wade – Bloomberg
Miners can’t keep up with world’s voracious appetite for coal; Record natural gas prices pushing power plants to switch fuel
Coal stockpiles at U.S. power plants plunged to the lowest in at least 24 years as electricity generators burn the fuel faster than miners can dig it out of the ground.


Rokos Hedge Fund Slumps 20% in Worst Year for Famed Macro Trader
Nishant Kumar – Bloomberg
Losses worsened this month when the fund declined about 11%; Rokos made 44% in 2020 in record year for his firm in London
Billionaire Chris Rokos’s hedge fund is heading for its worst year of losses ever. His macro money pool, which had $14.5 billion in assets at the start of the year, declined by about 11% this month, according to a person with knowledge of the matter. The hit extends losses for the year to 20%, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the information is private.

Deutsche Bank Reports Higher Profit as Loan Charges Fall; German lender says it is on track to meet ambitious financial targets next year
Patricia Kowsmann – WSJ
Deutsche Bank AG’s DB 2.00% businesses did better than expected in the third quarter but higher costs and a continued slowdown in its investment-banking arm weighed on results. Quarterly net profit rose 6% to EUR329 million, equivalent to $381 million, aided by a decline in provisions for bad loans related to the pandemic. Analysts had forecast a profit of EUR280 million. Revenue rose 2%, mostly due to a strong performance from the bank’s asset-management business.

E*TRADE Introduces E*TRADE Equity Edge Online Developer Platform to Manage Participant Transactions, says Fortune Business Insights™; Companies Profiled in Online Trading Platform Market: TD Ameritrade, E-Trade, Fmr LLC., Ally Financial Inc., Tradeweb Markets LLC., Power Exchange India Limited, eToro – Your Social Investment Network, Interactive Brokers LLC, TradeStation, Octagon Strategy Limited, Robinhood and others
The global online trading platform market is set to gain impetus from the rising integration of artificial intelligence (AI) with electronic trading platform solutions. Chatbots help users to receive market estimations, data about the trader’s notifications, account reports, real-time estimates, and generic FAQs. In February 2021, for instance, HSBC unveiled a pricing chatbot that utilizes AI to provide instant analytics and pricing for foreign exchange (FX) options to clients.This information is given by Fortune Business Insights™in a report, titled, “Online Trading Platform Market, 2021-2028.” As per the report, the market stood at USD 8.28 billion in 2020. It is projected to grow from USD 8.59 billion in 2021 to USD 12.16 billion in 2028 at a CAGR of 5.1% during the forecast period.

JPMorgan’s $30 Billion Racial Equity Pledge, One Year Later; The bank says it has committed $13 billion in loans and spending, with the bulk going to affordable housing
David Benoit – WSJ
JPMorgan Chase JPM -1.22% & Co. said it has already committed $13 billion of the $30 billion in lending and spending it pledged last year for improving racial equity. In a progress report Tuesday, the nation’s biggest bank said it had issued $6 billion in loans that kept open affordable housing and rental units across the country, and issued $1 billion in loans to build more. It said another $4 billion went into refinancing 16,000 mortgages for Black and Latino borrowers.


China Gas Stations Ration Diesel Adding to Supply Chain Squeeze
Bloomberg News
Trucks form snaking queues as retailers put limits on sales; Nation trying to avoid adding diesel to wider energy crunch
Fuel retailers in parts of China are rationing diesel volumes to customers as the nation ramps up efforts to avert a similar supply crunch that’s engulfing the coal and natural gas sectors.

Russia Wants Gas Price 60% Lower to Keep Energy Grip on Europe
Olga Tanas and Dina Khrennikova – Bloomberg
Nation prefers natural gas to cost no more than $400/kcm; Kremlin concerned rally could cut demand for Russian supplies
Russia wants natural gas prices in top buyer Europe to come down by about 60% in the longer term as a prolonged rally will destroy demand for Gazprom PJSC’s supplies, according to two officials with knowledge of the country’s energy policy.

China Could Build New Coal Plants Overseas Even After Xi Pledge; It’s unclear whether developments that haven’t begun construction will go ahead after President Xi Jinping’s promise to stop building projects abroad.
Bloomberg News
Chinese state-owned enterprises have a massive pipeline of coal-fired power projects in more than a dozen countries and it remains unclear if they’ll be scrapped, even after President Xi Jinping’s pledge to stop building plants abroad.

Equinor Boosts Gas Exports by Sacrificing Some Oil Volumes
Lars Erik Taraldsen and Elena Mazneva – Bloomberg
Gas re-injected into Gina Krog oil field is exported instead; Europe is suffering from economically damaging gas price spike
Equinor ASA is boosting natural gas exports to ease Europe’s supply crunch, sacrificing some oil production in the process. The Norwegian giant has halted the re-injection of gas that had been used to boost oil output at the Gina Krog field, and will export the fuel instead, Equinor Chief Executive Officer Anders Opedal said in a Bloomberg TV interview on Wednesday.

China Agrees on Plan to Cap Coal Price to Ease Power Crisis
Bloomberg News
Cap to be set at 440 yuan per ton with 20% upside: people; China is tackling power shortages after coal supply squeezed
China plans to limit the price miners sell thermal coal for as it seeks to ease a power crunch that’s prompted electricity rationing and even caused a blackout in a major city last month.

Gazprom’s low gas storage levels fuel questions over Russia’s supply to Europe; Data reveal disparity between low stocks at state-backed group’s facilities and healthy levels elsewhere in EU
David Sheppard, Mehreen Khan and Guy Chazan – FT
Russia’s Gazprom has emptied its gas storage facilities in western Europe to unusually low levels ahead of the winter, adding to fears that Moscow has exacerbated a shortage of supplies that has boosted prices to a record level.

ETC Group appoints co-CEO from BSC Prime Brokerage; Having acted as non-executive director of ETC Group since 2020, incoming co-CEO joins ETC Group full-time, bringing considerable management experience to the role.
Wesley Bray – The Trade
Institutional-grade crypto-backed securities provider ETC Group looks to drive mainstream adoption of crypto ETPs with new co-CEO appointment. Tim Bevan will take on the co-CEO role, joining from emerging markets specialist, BSC Prime Brokerage, where he acted as CEO.

India Is No Place for U.S.-Style Investor Activism; Invesco has lost a round in the fight to oust Zee Entertainment’s family founders from the board, but the battle for control may not be over yet.
Andy Mukherjee – Bloomberg
Aggressive, no-holds-barred shareholder activism has met with plenty of cultural resistance in Asia, most notably in Japan and South Korea. Now, it’s India’s turn to curb American investors’ enthusiasm.


The Market for Vintage Travel Posters Takes Flight During Pandemic; Armchair tourism meets armchair collecting.
James Tarmy – Bloomberg
Nicholas Lowry was assembling a collection of travel posters for his Nov. 23 auction when he came across one from 1914 intended for British audiences. Its pitch? “Travel to France,” says Lowry, the president of Swann Auction Galleries in New York. “This was printed two months before the First World War,” making it one of the last vestiges of peace before the proverbial lights went out in Europe. The “historical showstopper,” as he calls it, is estimated at $700 to $1,000.

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