Breaking News

John Lothian Newsletter: CFTC votes to propose registration, risk controls for automated-trading firms; If China Killed Commodity Super Cycle, Fed Is About to Bury It; Europe’s Mifid markets rules set for year’s delay

First Read

Autocrats
By John Lothian, Doug Ashburn, and Jim Kharouf – JLN

It would be safe to say that in the months prior to yesterday’s CFTC proposed rule on automated trading, that those who spoke to the agency were convinced that the rule would be more flexible than the one that was rolled out.

The rule, now dubbed Regulation AT, addresses everything from what kinds of risk controls should be in place when creating an automated trading system to post trade reporting requirements so the CFTC knows that you know what you’re doing when running an algo program. All that seems to make sense in the wake of two so-called flash crashes and other algo misadventures.

But what is troubling are a couple of key components in the rule – registration and intellectual property. Registration with the CFTC applies to proprietary trades as well as clearing member futures commission merchants (visit the rule’s page in MarketsReformWiki). I’m not sure, but that’s pretty much everyone, even Doug Ashburn, who used to be a floor broker and John Lothian, a recovering electronic broker. Oddly, hedge funds have NOT been included.

Just what does the CFTC plan to do with all of these names? And just what will the CFTC do with the algo you’ve hired a staff of Ph.Ds to create? That is a question raised by CFTC commissioner Chris Giancarlo, who is likely the best person at the CFTC to ask this question, given his experience in the trading space. Just how and when should the CFTC look at one’s intellectual property? And if they do, who will keep it safe?

There was once a CFTC employee named Susan Wagner who left the commission and patented the idea of electronic trading. She sued the exchanges for infringing on her patent, including Howard Lutnick of then eSpeed, who then bought the patent from her and took control of the suits against the other exchanges.

There are many questions to be carefully considered here. But we all will have an opportunity to chime in. As soon as the rule hits the Federal Register – and we will keep you posted as to when that will happen – a 90 day public comment period will commence. Speak now, or … you know the rest.

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Trying To Stop The Next Flash Crash
JohnLothianNews.com

The CFTC announced its new automated trading rules, marking a major shift on how automated trading will be developed and implemented in the coming years.
View the Story »
**Check out our updated story on automated trading regulation.

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What I believe is Not a Generality
John Lothian – JLN

My staff will tell you I hate generalities. I do not believe in grouping and condemning people together because of a common heritage, political philosophy, religion, gender, sexual orientation or other commonality. Or height even.

I believe in the merits and uniqueness of individuals. I believe in judging people by their character, not the color of their skin, the God they believe in (or don’t), the party they belong to, who they chose to love or the place they live.

For the rest of the column, click here

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The train on platform MiFID 2 is delayed by one year
by Steve Grob – Fidessa
Not surprising to see that it now looks odds-on that we’ll get a full one year delay on the implementation of MiFID 2. This will embarrass the politicians who don’t want to be seen as going soft on those “wreckless” bankers, but I assume Jo Public will have forgotten all about this by the time they’re up for re-election in 2019. It’s worth bearing in mind, however, that the original aim of MiFID 1 back in 2007 was simple – make it easier to trade equities across European borders. Post financial crisis and the whole process became highly politicised and was skewed towards extracting retribution from the industry and ensuring that systemic risk was removed from the system. This ignored the simple fact that risk in capital markets can never be erased, it can only ever be moved to another part of the system. Naturally the regulators will worry that a delay might mean all their hard work gets unpicked, but perhaps a delay now is better than charging ahead with something that even ESMA says it would struggle to prepare for in time.
bit.ly/1XeQrgI

***** I never miss a Steve Grob commentary.

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The Future of Money
60 Minutes, CBS News
A “mobile money” revolution has swept Kenya, where people can send and receive money on their cell phones. It’s improved commerce and brought basic necessities to poorer areas
cbsn.ws/1P6q7kF

***** Revolutionary way to handle money is in Kenya of all places. Worth the watch. Will make bankers quiver.

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Women’s Exchange Promotes “Women on Boards”
HKEx
Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited’s (HKEx) Women’s Exchange, or WEx, highlighted the importance of “Women on Boards: Role Models and Mentors” in nurturing female leaders at its annual reception held on Wednesday, 25 November.
bit.ly/21fwAxr
***** Someone gets it.

***DA: A Harvard study showed that there is little correlation between a group’s collective intelligence and the individual IQs of its members, but if a group includes more women, its collective intelligence does indeed rise. Think about that, then read the story below.

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CODE Red
Doug Ashburn – JLN
Have you ever heard of Grace Hopper? Yeah; neither had I until last Friday, when I attended a private screening of CODE: Debugging the Gender Gap, followed by a panel discussion that included the movie’s director Robin Hauser Reynolds and several tech experts, including Trading Technologies executive (and MarketsWiki Education contributor) Katie Burgoon. The 90-minute documentary explores the shortage of female software engineers in the U.S. and abroad, and what can be done to narrow the gap.
bit.ly/1lHbqrI

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Adrienne Seaman, CME Group – Legal Aspects of a Career in Futures
MarketsWikiEducation.com

In 2008, Adrienne Seaman was looking for a change, for fear of getting “bored” in her job as a partner in a London law firm. As a lawyer with a degree in computer science, she was particularly well suited to join CME Group as it began its expansion in Europe. Two weeks after she joined, Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy, and the wheels of regulatory change were set in motion for the entire financial market. Today she has no worries about being bored.

Seaman asks, “who in the business will be worrying about law and regulation?” The answer, of course, is everyone. In this MarketsWiki Education talk, she offers tips not only for the would-be lawyers in the room, but also the 95 percent of people in the room who will not be lawyers, but will invariably need to deal with lawyers and legal issues throughout their professional careers.

Watch the video »
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Lead Stories

High-Speed Traders Face New CFTC Scrutiny; CFTC votes to propose registration, risk controls for automated-trading firms
By ANDREW ACKERMAN – WSJ
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission took its first concrete step toward boosting oversight of rapid-fire traders, advancing plans to increase controls of computerized trading after a series of market glitches.
on.wsj.com/1PO8EgM

***DA: For a complete summary of the rule, and related documents, plus links to related topics, visit the rule’s page in MarketsReformWiki

If China Killed Commodity Super Cycle, Fed Is About to Bury It
Kevin Crowley – Bloomberg
Raw-material losses worst since 1999, before China buying boom
Higher U.S. rates mean stronger dollar, further eroding demand
For commodities, it’s like the 21st century never happened.
The last time the Bloomberg Commodity Index of investor returns was this low, Apple Inc.’s best-selling product was a desktop computer, and you could pay for it with francs and deutsche marks.
bloom.bg/1Hmx9yS

Europe’s Mifid markets rules set for year’s delay
Philip Stafford – FT
Europe’s flagship markets legislation is set to be delayed in full by a year after parliamentarians softened their opposition to plans to postpone implementation of an overhaul of European trading.
on.ft.com/1R6fdL6

With glory days gone, London traders face life in ‘real world’
By Jamie McGeever – Reuters
Thousands of traders squeezed out as banks slash costs; Industry faces tough regulation after global crash, scandals; Traders increasingly replaced by automated algorithms
Once dubbed “masters of the universe”, it seemed the party would never end for a profession often associated with a champagne lifestyle of fast cars and faster living.
reut.rs/1OggnTp

The Climate Talks in Paris Might Actually Work This Time
Alex Morales – Bloomberg
Solar panels a third of 2009 prices; wind turbines down 28%
Paris talks ambition is to curb fossil fuel pollution
United Nations climate talks set to begin in Paris next week promise to produce a landmark deal that has eluded diplomats for more than two decades.
bloom.bg/1MR5naH

Hungary central bank takes control of Budapest bourse
Philip Stafford in London and Andrew Byrne in Budapest – FT
Hungary’s central bank is to take control of the country’s main stock exchange after buying the shareholdings of the bourse’s two big Austrian shareholders in a $45m (£29m) deal.
on.ft.com/1IgcmYL

The real challenge facing ‘Flash Boys’ hero is the IEX business model
By Francine McKenna – MarketWatch
The established stock exchanges are battling IEX Group over the issue of an electronic “speed bump” — but the real battle the upstart faces is its own, unique business model.
on.mktw.net/1NsteTH

Online betting business Intrade set to be wound up next week; Both Intrade and Trading Exchange Networks are calling creditors’ meetings on December 3rd
Barry O’Halloran – Irish Times
Intrade, the once high-profile Irish online betting business that fell foul of US regulators following the last White House race, looks set to be wound up at a creditors’ meeting next week.
bit.ly/1IgdoUx

IEX ramps up war of words, ideas, in challenge to U.S. exchanges
BY JOHN MCCRANK – Reuters
Would-be exchange operator IEX Group ratcheted up its war of words with the New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq, both of which have argued against IEX’s exchange application, saying they were trying to block competition to protect their business interests.
reut.rs/1PYLKSt

US traders’ algorithms face tougher scrutiny
Gregory Meyer in New York – FT
As many as 100 trading groups that generate more than a third of volumes on futures exchanges would have to register and let the government inspect their secret source code under a US regulator’s plan to patrol the frontiers of electronic markets.
on.ft.com/1kTfBAs

Japanese securities regulator raids Murakami’s home
Leo Lewis in Tokyo – FT
The home of Yoshiaki Murakami, Japan’s most notorious shareholder activist, was raided on Wednesday as the securities regulator began an investigation into stock manipulation, local media have reported.
on.ft.com/1Ogdy4M

Banks splurge on IT to fight threat from Google and Apple; Tech companies are seen as a big competitive threat to banks, which fear customers will prefer the financial services on offer from the trendy Silicon Valley firms
By Tim Wallace – Telegraph
British banks are hiking their technology budgets in an effort to overhaul outdated IT systems and to prepare for battle with the tech firms, like Google and Apple, that are entering the financial services market.
bit.ly/1NOWSgd

China’s Citic Securities Found Massively Overstating Equity Swap Figure; Securities association reveals $166 billion discrepancy for half-year period
WSJ
Citic Securities, China’s largest brokerage, overstated its equity swap transactions between April and September by 1.06 trillion yuan ($165.9 billion), according to findings by the country’s leading securities industry association.
on.wsj.com/1N7Bthr

How the State Department warning could affect holiday travel
Robert Channick – Chicago Tribune
Warning more likely to deter leisure than business trips, analysts say.
The State Department’s worldwide travel warning about increased terrorist threats may not result in empty seats at the Thanksgiving table but could affect plans for Christmas and beyond.
trib.in/21fA03i

Life after the pits: how ‘dinosaur’ traders are reinventing themselves
by Tom Groenfeldt – eFinancialCarees
To survive in the trading pit, all you needed was an ability to think fast under pressure, shout loudly and do rapid mental arithmetic. But in a world where successful traders are under 30, robots are taking over and anyone who survives needs to be able to code, there’s a generation of traders from the Chicago Board of Trade who have been left on the scrapheap.
bit.ly/1QHTkT5

Regulatory

EU strikes deal on rules to prevent rigging of market benchmarks
Reuters
European Union negotiators reached a preliminary agreement on Wednesday on new rules to stop the rigging of market benchmarks, after attempted manipulation of the Libor and Euribor interest rates indexes by banks.
reut.rs/1T3sceQ

CFTC’s Massad ‘open’ to letting exchanges decide hedging exemptions
Neil Roland, MLex (Subscription Required)
The US Commodity Futures Trading Commission is considering whether to let futures exchanges decide whether to grant certain hedging exemptions from the position-limits rule, Chairman Timothy Massad said.
bit.ly/1MAH82B

CFTC Divisions Provide Conditional No-Action Relief to Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.
CFTC
The relief only applies to swaps executed by Wells Fargo’s London branch with counterparties located outside of a foreign jurisdiction for which the Commission has issued a substituted compliance determination with respect to the applicable transaction-level requirements.
1.usa.gov/1SipZfG

Lew Vows to Resist Congressional Maneuvers to Weaken Dodd-Frank
By PETER EAVIS – NY Times
As an important deadline looms in Congress, the Obama administration signaled on Tuesday that it would push back hard against any legislation that substantially loosens the sweeping 2010 overhaul of the financial system.
nyti.ms/1OrIrRY

CFTC takes big step toward high-speed trading scrutiny
Bloomberg via Crain’s Chicago Businesss
The top U.S. derivatives regulator took its biggest step yet to increase surveillance of high-speed and other forms of computer-driven trading that have surged in recent years.
bit.ly/1MR7hrQ

Self-Regulatory Organization (SRO) Rulemaking and National Market System (NMS) Plans
SEC

    • DTC: Notice of Filing of Proposed Rule Change Regarding the Acknowledgment of End-of-Day Net-Net Settlement Balances by Settling Banks (Release No. 34-76510; File No. SR-DTC-2015-011; November 23, 2015); see also Exhibit 5

 

    • ISE Gemini: Notice of Filing of Proposed Rule Change to Amend Rule 804 (g) (Release No. 34-76505; File No. SR-ISEGemini-2015-17; November 23, 2015); see also Exhibit 5

 

    • Phlx: Order Approving a Proposed Rule Change Relating to the Active Specialized Quote Feed Port Fee (Release No. 34-76513; File No. SR-Phlx-2015-79)

jlne.ws/1eCTnOv

Sebi’s new unit seeks to reduce legal action; Regulator creates additional division SAT Cell which would help reduce pendency of appeals
Jayshree P Upadhyay – Business Standard
The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) has put in place a division to reduce litigations and tackle pendency of appeals.
bit.ly/1QHSvtw

Exchanges & Trading Facilities

ICE Futures Singapore sees strong start to trading
Futures & Options World
ICE Futures Singapore traded over 30,000 contracts in its first full week of business, marking a solid start for the Intercontinental Exchange’s first Asian exchange. ICE Futures Singapore, which launched on November 17, executed 30,441 contracts in its first five days of trading and had open interest of 12,525 at the close of business on Monday November 23, according to the exchange’s data.
bit.ly/1T3sr9Z

CBOE Holdings, Inc. Short Interest Update
Money Flow Index
CBOE Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:CBOE), According to the latest information the short interest in CBOE Holdings, Inc. shot up by 1.9% or 63,687 shares. The final shorts are 4.2% of the total floated shares.
bit.ly/1PYOIWV

Japan Exchange Group Senior Management Changes
Japan Exchange Group, Inc.
Japan Exchange Group, Inc. (JPX) hereby announces the following proposed changes of Representative Executive Officers and group senior management as a result of the decision made at the JPX’s nomination committee held today.
bit.ly/1HmwRrZ

Natixis approved to issue Letters of Credit for trading on DME
Dubai Mercantile Exchange
Dubai Mercantile Exchange (DME) and Natixis are pleased to announce that Natixis has been approved to issue Letters of Credit (LCs) for trading on the Dubai Mercantile Exchange directly from Singapore.
bit.ly/1lhBucp

Dubai Gold and Commodities Exchange to launch Chinese Yuan futures
Megha Merani – 7 Days
The Dubai Gold and Commodities Exchange (DGCX) will soon launch Chinese Yuan futures to further strengthen the status of Dubai as a global trading centre, its CEO has said.
bit.ly/1SjXaiN

Hedge Funds & Managed Futures

Hedge Funds Stalk Battered Corner of Bond World; Closed-end funds trade at lowest levels since the financial crisis
By ROB COPELAND And SARAH KROUSE – WSJ
Wall Street traders are circling a corner of the bond world they say is taking an unwarranted beating in anticipation of rising interest rates.
on.wsj.com/1Lz8RNf

Opinion: Wall Street is still trying to sell you these turkeys
By Brett Arends – MarketWatch
Analysts missed the big losers in stocks — as usual
Boy, oh boy, Macy’s M, -1.02% has been a turkey on Wall Street this year. The stock is down 40% since Jan. 1, and the company recently said it was going to close a whole bunch of stores because they’re doing so badly.
on.mktw.net/1TeoO1F

Goldman Says Stocks Are Going Nowhere Next Year
By DAN STRUMPF – WSJ
Goldman Sachs Group Inc.GS -0.27% just issued its stock-market forecast for 2016, and it’s going to be… boring.
on.wsj.com/1NcKDh5

At Skadden, Tax Law Isn’t So Boring as Inversions Raise the Stakes; Law firm lands in the middle of an election-year debate about U.S. tax policy
By LIZ HOFFMAN – WSJ
It isn’t boring to be a tax attorney these days. Just ask the team at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP working on Pfizer Inc.’s $155 billion deal with Allergan PLC. Their immediate task is getting the biggest tax-lowering merger in history past U.S. authorities.
on.wsj.com/1OghkuZ

Investors psyched by the endowment effect
John Authers – FT
Whenever you are trying to value your own investments, beware of the “endowment effect”. It is one of the most pervasive errors we make, and one of the most costly. It vitiates portfolio returns and it also has profound consequences in more important areas of human endeavour.
on.ft.com/1LzdEhA

Draghi’s `Whatever It Takes’ Was Confidence Trick, Stiglitz Says
Jan-Henrik Foerster – Bloomberg
Joseph Stiglitz, the Nobel-prize-winning economist, said that Mario Draghi’s 2012 pledge to shield the euro zone only papered over the cracks that are caused by the faulty design of the currency bloc.
bloom.bg/1MRaFmx

Banks & Brokers

J.P. Morgan Warns It Could Unplug Quicken and Quickbooks Users; Bank tells more than 100,000 customers to verify data if they want to continue to sync accounts
By PETER RUDEGEAIR – WSJ
J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. plans to disable customers’ access to their bank-account information through software designed to help manage their personal finances unless the customers take steps to confirm their identity with the bank.
on.wsj.com/1PYJLxB

Bad Loans Weigh on European Banks, Regulator Reports
By CHAD BRAY – NY Times
Bad loans continue to weigh on the bottom lines of European banks despite efforts by the region’s lenders to raise more capital and improve their risk profiles since the financial crisis, according to regulators.
nyti.ms/1lJBFO7

Clearing & Settlement

Pay attention to bitcoin-like technology, Bank for International Settlements tells lenders
South China Morning Post
The distributed ledger technology underlying many digital currency schemes could have a much broader application beyond payments,” BIS said. In particular, it is conceivable that distributed ledgers could have an impact on the pledging of collateral or on the registration of shares, bonds, derivatives trades and other assets. The use of distributed ledgers may also induce changes in trading, clearing and settlement as they could foster disintermediation of traditional service providers in various markets and infrastructures.
bit.ly/1T3nIoP

Dtcc’s daniel magarino discusses new data as a service offering
Waters Technology
Daniel Magarino, head of data products at the Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC), talks with WatersTechnology about customizing data so firms can turn data into action. The DTCC has launched a new Data-as-a-Service (DaaS) offering. The service allows users to gain insights on trading activities from the DTCC’s clearing, settlement, asset servicing and derivatives trade reporting solutions. It provides subscribers access to their own firm-specific transactions data, as well as positions aggregate data, while delivering asset-class specific data.
bit.ly/1T3nQ7C

Indexes & Products

NYSE seeks fast track for some ETFs — again
By Leslie Josephs, WSJ
The New York Stock Exchange is again trying to gain regulators’ approval to fast-track listings of actively managed exchange-traded funds.
on.wsj.com/1YtV6sg

Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management’s X-trackers Platform Launches Enhanced Beta ETFs
Business Wire
Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management (Deutsche AWM) today announced the launch of its first enhanced beta exchange traded funds (ETFs), Deutsche X-trackers Russell 1000 Enhanced Beta ETF and Deutsche X-trackers FTSE Developed ex US Enhanced Beta ETF. The ETFs are the US platform’s first, broad-based US domestic and unhedged developed international equity ETFs. They are intended to serve as core portfolio allocations as well as an alternative to traditional market cap weighted domestic and international index products.
bit.ly/1T3ovWL

Hedge fund-inspired ETFs hurt by ‘crowded’ sell-off
The Globe and Mail
Exchange-traded funds designed to mimic the strategies of hedge funds are mimicking their way into some serious losses of late.
bit.ly/1T3p0jA

Smart-Beta vs Market-Cap Emerging Market ETFs
ETF Trends
Investors are beginning to adopt greater international exposure to diversify their investment portfolios, and more are picking up smart-beta exchange traded funds to potentially enhance the overseas returns. However, potential investors should understand how these alternative index-based strategies may differ from traditional market cap-weighted indices.
bit.ly/1T3pbLy

Technology

Exclusive: Three Goldman bankers leave for Uber as tech world raids Wall Street talent
BY OLIVIA ORAN AND HEATHER SOMERVILLE – Reuters
Three mid-level bankers in Goldman Sachs Group Inc’s (GS.N) technology investment banking group in San Francisco have left to take positions at ride service company Uber Technologies Inc in recent months, people familiar with the matter told Reuters.
reut.rs/1N7CtlW

Fintech Threatens Small Banks More than Crisis Ever Did
American Banker – Bank Think
Success in navigating our on-demand economy, which uses technology to deliver goods and services in a speedy fashion, will determine whether community banking thrives or goes the way of the local bookstore or video rental shop. All banks should be thinking hard about who their customers are today and who they are going to be in the next five to 10 years.
bit.ly/1T3pEgN

From Finance to Fintech
CFO
Wall Street executives are increasingly filling the CFO seats at financial technology firms.
bit.ly/1T3pyWL

Enforcement

SEC Charges Political Intelligence Firm
SEC.gov
Marwood Group Research LLC also agreed to retain an independent compliance consultant after an SEC investigation found that the firm failed to properly inform compliance officers about instances when analysts obtained potential material nonpublic information from government employees. Under Marwood Group’s written policies and procedures, compliance officers are central to the firm’s efforts to prevent confidential or nonpublic information from being released to clients, who in turn could use it to influence their securities trading decisions.
1.usa.gov/1Siq4zX

Political Intelligence Firm to Pay S.E.C. Penalty
By LIZ MOYER – NY Times
A firm that gathered intelligence inside the Washington Beltway for the benefit of its hedge fund customers agreed to pay a $375,000 penalty to the Securities and Exchange Commission over compliance failures.
nyti.ms/1POcvKW

Ex-Goldman employee accused by U.S. regulator of insider trading
Reuters
A former Goldman Sachs Group Inc employee was accused by U.S. securities regulators on Tuesday of repeatedly engaging in insider trading based on information about deals involving the bank’s clients.
reut.rs/1IajStp

Environmental & Energy

Carbon limits to put $2 trln of coal, oil, gas projects at risk-report
Reuters
Up to $2 trillion in petroleum and coal projects will not be needed if the world takes action to limit warming of the planet to 2 degrees Celsius, according to a report released this week ahead of a global climate summit in Paris.
reut.rs/1IahrXS

China Plans To Create A Nationwide Carbon Market By 2017
NPR
During important events in China in recent years — from international summit meetings to sporting events and military parades — the government has resorted to ordering smoggy skies to turn blue. Apparently, the skies dare not disobey. This involves ordering cars off of the capital’s streets, and shutting down factories across much of north China.
n.pr/1T3qIBo

Experts discuss how to build a carbon-free energy industry
The Guardian
With the UN Conference on Climate Change (COP) in Paris just days away, a global strategy for reducing carbon emissions is tantalisingly close. Current commitments on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are due to run out in 2020 and governments are convening in Paris to agree a roadmap for what happens in the next decade and beyond. For any such agreement to work, however, it must include a transition from high-carbon, fossil-fuelled energy production, to one where power comes from clean, renewable energy.
bit.ly/1T3qSZs

Five U.S. states, D.C. seek joint plan to cut auto sector emissions
Reuters
Five states and the District of Columbia will develop a joint market-based approach to try to cut greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles across a large area of the Northeastern United States, their governors and mayor announced on Tuesday. Connecticut, Delaware, New York, Rhode Island and Vermont will work with D.C. to devise market-based programs such as emissions trading or mileage-based user fees.
reut.rs/1T3qV7B

Islanders on climate change frontline plead for extra funds
Jamie Smyth in Fiji – FT
All that is visible of Togoru’s graveyard are the tops of three headstones poking out from under the turquoise blue water of Fiji’s coral coast.”My great-grandfather was buried in this graveyard but now we can no longer pay our respects to our ancestors,” says Barney Dunn, village patriarch. “Every year the sea keeps rising, encroaching further inland, destroying our crops and flooding homes.”
on.ft.com/1IalfZ8

Crude Storage Tanks Nearing Their Brim Spur `Super Contango’
Mark Shenk – Bloomberg
Gap between monthly contracts reached $1.45 a barrel on Monday
U.S. crude supply at highest for time of year since 1930: EIA
Surging U.S. crude stockpiles that have filled storage tanks near capacity are widening the discount on immediate oil deliveries.
bloom.bg/1NOXtOR

Asia-Pacific

South Korea takes aim at zombie companies
Song Jung-a in Seoul – FT
A worker rides a bicycle past a container vessel under construction at the Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering shipyard in Geoje, South Korea©Bloomberg
South Korea is bracing for a wave of tough corporate restructuring as the government finally gets serious about targeting zombie companies, alarmed by slowing economic growth and ballooning losses in major export industries.
on.ft.com/1Lz9M07

Beijing Ends Curb on Brokerages’ Stock Sales; Imposed during summer rout, restriction required they buy more shares than they sell in daily proprietary trading
By SHEN HONG – WSJ
China has lifted a restriction imposed on brokerages during the summer stock-market rout, no longer requiring them to buy more shares than they sell in daily proprietary trading, according to an official document reviewed by The Wall Street Journal.
on.wsj.com/1P8VBXc

‘Chinese Medicine’ Fails to Cure Credit Crunch; Despite pledges of financial reform from Beijing, businesses in Wenzhou—and throughout the country—still struggle to obtain loans from banks
By SHEN HONG – WSJ
At the peak of a dramatic local credit crunch in October 2011, China’s then Premier Wen Jiabao paid an emergency visit to the eastern coastal city of Wenzhou, known as the country’s capital of capitalism.
on.wsj.com/1T3r6Qu

Vanishing Chinese executives a vexatious mystery for Hong Kong stock market investors
The Province
The chairman of the Hong Kong arm of one of China’s biggest securities companies goes missing. The head of another firm resurfaces after months incommunicado. An executive at a film studio is detained for allegedly taking bribes. They’re not plot outlines for crime novels but real life cases lifted from the normally dry Hong Kong stock exchange filings of Chinese companies over the past year.
bit.ly/1T3rn5K

China allows first foreign institutions into interbank FX market
Reuters
The first batch of foreign central banks, sovereign wealth funds and international financial institutions have been registered to enter China’s interbank foreign exchange market, the country’s central bank said on Wednesday. This registration comes ahead of a highly-anticipated announcement by the International Monetary Fund on Monday that China’s yuan may join its foreign exchange basket.
reut.rs/1T3rrTc

Singapore to trump Hong Kong in millionaire growth
GulfNews.com
Singapore will outpace Hong Kong in growth in the ranks of millionaires over the next five years, with about one in 30 people qualifying as high net worth by 2020, swelled by Indians and Chinese keen to avoid social unrest, according to WealthInsight.
bit.ly/1T3rEFV

Frontier Markets

Markets closed on account of Guru Nanak Jayanti
Business Standard
Trading segments including Indian equity, forex, money and commodity markets are shut today on account of Guru Nanak Jayanti, which commemorates the birth of the founder of the Sikh faith. On Tuesday, markets ended lower for the second straight session as investors turned cautious ahead of the expiry of November derivative contracts.
bit.ly/1kTfl4x

ITG expands POSIT to India and Taiwan; ITG increases its presence in Asia with the addition of Indian and Taiwan equities.
By Paul Walsh – The Trade News
ITG has announced the addition of Indian and Taiwan equities to its POSIT Alert network, taking its total of Asian pacific markets covered to 10.
bit.ly/1MR63wH

India has made efforts to deepen financial markets, says Modi
Livemint
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday invited investors in Singapore to play a larger role in India’s economic growth, saying his government had delivered on the reforms front and “successfully restored the credibility of India in the eyes of global players”.
bit.ly/1T3rKxp

Miscellaneous

Betfair merger on course as revenues rise
Malcolm Moore, Leisure Industries Correspondent – FT
Betfair Group Plc logos, left, and Paddy Power Plc logos, right, sit on a computer screen in this arranged photograph in London, U.K.©Bloomberg
Betfair, the online bookmaker, has said the planning for its merger with Paddy Power is in “reasonable shape” as its first-half revenues, but also the cost of sales, rise.
on.ft.com/1jjjDk1

US farmers turn to storage as grain prices sag
Emiko Terazono in London and Gregory Meyer in New York – FT
Big white grain bags sold by Big John Mfg company of Nebraska are flying out the door.
on.ft.com/1NsrUQI

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About Author

Doug Ashburn is a former editor-at-large of John Lothian News. He left in late 2016 and is now the managing editor of T3 Custom.