Breaking News

What’s the Biggest Trade on the New York Stock Exchange? The Last One

First Read

Hits & Takes
JLN Staff

CFTC Chairman Chris Giancarlo opened his speech to the FIA International Conference in Boca Raton by honoring Leo Melamed and his contributions to the industry upon which all market participants benefit. Leo is the giant “upon whose shoulders we all stand,” Giancarlo said, noting Leo had announced his retirement from the CME Group’s board. It was a classy display from the popular CFTC Chairman. Kudos Mr. Chairman!~JJL

During the lunch at the FIA Conference, before the presentation by the journalist and author Walter Isaacson, a tribute video was shown honoring Mike Dawley, who is retiring from Goldman Sachs at the end of the month. John Lothian Productions produced the video for FIA. We are also producing a longer version for Dawley with some of the comments we shot but that did not make it into the final 3 minute video produced. Congratulations Mike on the great career! You are leaving on top, which is hard to do.~JJL

A poll of the audience for the blockchain panel showed that 61 percent were glad the exchanges launched bitcoin futures, 22 percent were not, 17 percent were not sure.~JK

EEX CEO Peter Reitz said the exchange is looking to convert the Nodal exchange technology over to the T7 platform and launch a new US trucking freight contract in the coming months. It also has become the largest power exchange in the world with US and European markets, and Singapore on the way.

The true cause of the 2008 financial crisis is still a matter for debate. A multiple-choice audience poll during a panel on the crisis came up with the result that the cause was “easy money and excessive leverage” rather than exotic OTC derivatives, housing policies, or careless regulators. ~SR

“Blockchain is a humanizing technology. It lets us prove who we are, what we’ve done and what we own,” said author Michael Casey in a fireside chat with ICE’s Jeff Sprecher at the FIA Conference in Boca Raton.~JD

Remember medtech company Theranos? Well, it’s in some serious trouble after an investigation by the SEC.~SD

Nasdaq interviewed a tall, fat man in a bright green polo shirt with a shiny forehead to start their TradeTalks live video interviews at the FIA International Conference in Boca Raton, FL yesterday.~JJL

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Sponsored Content

Renato Mariotti

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Keynote Address of Chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo before FIA Annual Meeting, Boca Raton, Florida
CFTC
Thank you. Good morning. Thank you, Walt. It is great to be here at FIA’s 43rd International Futures Industry Conference. It is certainly the one annual event that brings together all participants in the global derivatives markets.
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The 16th of March is for the fourth time the “day of the share”; Private investors can buy DAX shares and DAX ETFs free of charge on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange / Share-based retirement provision must become more attractive
Deutsche Börse
With the support of numerous banks, Deutsche Börse is calling for the 4th “Share Share” on 16 March. With the event, Germany’s leading stock exchange operators and the participating banks want to increase the importance of the stock as an instrument for retirement provision in the population.
/goo.gl/yqR9nZ

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Kudlow to be top White House economic adviser as Trump adds longtime loyalist
By Robert Costa and Josh Dawsey – Washington Post
Conservative commentator Larry Kudlow on Wednesday accepted an offer from President Trump to head the White House’s National Economic Council, the latest in a rapid series of firings and personnel changes that have roiled the administration.
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***** Here is a 1994 NY Times article titled “A Wall St. Star’s Agonizing Confession” about Kudlow.~JJL

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FANG+ Puts the UMPH Back into the Markets and Exchange Competition
John Lothian – John Lothian News
Hallelujah! The magical power of innovation from exchange competition in Chicago is alive and well after a noticeable absence. The NYSE FANG+ index at ICE Futures US is the most innovative and timely new contract I have seen since the Cboe introduced the VIX. Besides the FANG+ contract, we have the expectation of the CME Group and Cboe slugging it out later this year with competing bitcoin futures offerings. Earlier this year we had the CME Group resteal the Russell index complex from ICE, returning the contracts to the CME where they were in 2007.
goo.gl/iJgA6S

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Wikipedia’s forgotten women: inside the editing marathon to fix imbalance
Nadja Sayej – The Guardian
There’s a better way to celebrate Women’s History Month than simply buying Hillary Clinton’s new book. Those looking to improve the public record can volunteer a few hours at the fifth annual Wikipedia edit-a-thon at the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington DC, where one can create, edit and add to Wikipedia pages on women in the arts on 17 March. “It’s for the promotion and establishment of art history,” said Sarah Osborne Bender, the museum’s library director. “We encourage gender equality in the arts and this is one way of doing it.”
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Wednesday’s Top Three
Yesterday’s most read story was from FIA, FIA elects new board members at annual meeting. Coming in number two was Bloomberg’s Nymex Veteran Targets Institutions With Cryptocurrency Exchange, and rounding out the top three most read stories yesterday was WSJ’s Ten Years After the Bear Stearns Bailout, Nobody Thinks It Would Happen Again

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MarketsWiki Stats
122,135,072 pages viewed; 23,040 pages; 212,063 edits
MarketsWiki Statistics

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Lead Stories

What’s the Biggest Trade on the New York Stock Exchange? The Last One; The NYSE operates between 9:30 a.m. and 4 p.m., but much of the action has moved to the final moments, thanks to index funds and others that flock to the day’s closing auction
Corrie Driebusch, Alexander Osipovich and Gregory Zuckerman – WSJ
Around 3:40 p.m. on a recent trading day, a dozen or so brokers at the New York Stock Exchange hustled back to their posts after bathroom breaks and a last coffee. They strapped on headphones to prepare for the closing minutes of the U.S. stock market—the pinnacle moment for investors world-wide.
/goo.gl/bCLFgR

SEC cyber unit eyes initial coin offerings with suspicion; As corporate fundraising evolves, investors need greater protection
Ben McLannahan in New York – FT
PlexCorps was the latest in a long line of hot initial coin offerings. The Montreal-based company had published a white paper, setting out the ways in which it would shake up the world of payments.
/goo.gl/YoZjAC

Exchanges ordered to test new trading rules; SEC pilot programme will examine changing the controversial ‘maker taker’ system
Nicole Bullock in New York – FT
The Securities and Exchange Commission on Wednesday approved a pilot programme that will test rules underpinning trading in the world’s largest equity market.
/goo.gl/aEXdxh

A Decade After Bear’s Collapse, the Seeds of Instability Are Germinating Again; A big financial-firm collapse in near future is exceedingly unlikely, but another crisis isn’t
Housing activists protested the government-backed bailout and sale of Bear Stearns in March 2008.
Greg Ip – WSJ
Since the bailout of Bear Stearns Cos. a decade ago this week and the failure of Lehman Brothers six months later, regulators have made it their mission to prevent a repeat.
/goo.gl/nyzGFZ

New economic adviser Larry Kudlow set to translate Trump’s vision; TV pundit might be short on fiscal training, but can spread free-market message
Barney Jopson in Washington – FT
Minutes after being confirmed as Donald Trump’s new top economic adviser, putting him at the centre of momentous decisions on trade and tax, Larry Kudlow was preparing to spend the first hour of the new era in an old habitat: on the set of CNBC, Wall Street’s favourite cable channel.
/goo.gl/i4NTzB

CQG Partners with Nasdaq Futures (NFX) to Offer Trading Platform for NFX Products
PR Newswire
CQG, Inc., a leading global provider of high-performance trading, market data, and technical analysis tools, today announced a new partnership with Nasdaq Futures (NFX), a leading futures exchange, to provide a trading solution for clients trading NFX products. NFX, leveraging CQG Desktop for its trading system, now makes that offering available with zero fees, providing direct trading access of NFX listed products to its clients.
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Deep Systems Announces Indigo the First Cross-Asset, Exchange Neutral, Institutional-Grade Digital Asset Trading Platform
BusinessWire
Deep Systems, a provider of next-generation infrastructure, software, and IT services, today announces the April roll out of its Indigo application, an institutional-grade, digital asset trading platform. Designed to overcome the localized tool sets required to participate in cryptocurrency markets, users will trade futures, spot, equities and options all from a single, exchange neutral interface.
/goo.gl/zysMB1

Billionaire Alan Howard Makes a Bet on Cryptocurrencies
Alastair Marsh and Nishant Kumar – Bloomberg
Hedge fund billionaire Alan Howard made sizable personal investments in cryptocurrencies last year and plans to put more of his own money into digital assets and the blockchain technology behind them, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
/goo.gl/rPbFPD

Transaction Fee Pilot for NMS Stocks
SEC
The Securities and Exchange Commission is proposing to conduct a Transaction Fee Pilot for National Market System stocks to study the effects that transaction-based fees and rebates may have on, and the effects that changes to those fees and rebates may have on, order routing behavior, execution quality, and market quality more generally. The data generated by the proposed pilot should help inform the Commission, as well as market participants and the public, about any such effects and thereby facilitate a data-driven evaluation of the need for regulatory action in this ar
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Traders Beware: Political Black Swan Looms Over Yen, Nikkei
Chris Anstey – Bloomberg
Yen seems not to have priced in political risks, analysts say; While policy change unlikely, foreign investors could react
The scandal embroiling Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s administration may be more serious than some investors realize, raising the potential for a rapid move in Japanese markets to discount the potential for a surprise end to the champions of Abenomics.
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Imagine Wall Street Without Jamie Dimon and Lloyd Blankfein; The succession plans at JPMorgan and Goldman say a lot about where the companies—and the Street—are headed.
Hugh Son – Bloomberg
In another universe, they might have starred in an odd-couple comedy about a pair of New Yorkers who rise to fame and fortune: Jamie Dimon, the voluble, sometimes ill-tempered alpha male from Queens; Lloyd Blankfein, shorter and bald, the wisecracking sidekick from Brooklyn.
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The Blood Unicorn Theranos Was Just a Fairy Tale; Founder Elizabeth Holmes spun a beautiful fantasy for investors, not so much for patients.
Matt Levine – Bloomberg
It was fun while it lasted. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg
It has been pretty obvious for a few years now that Theranos Inc. was a huge fraud. Theranos is a blood-testing startup that developed devices, which it called “TSPUs” and “miniLabs,” that were supposed to be able to do a wide range of laboratory tests on a finger-prick blood sample. It seems like Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes really wanted to build devices that would actually do these things, and thought she could, and tried to. But it didn’t work, and Theranos ran out of time: It talked Walgreens into offering Theranos tests at its stores, 1 but “it became clear to Holmes that the miniLab would not be ready” in time for the Walgreens rollout.
/goo.gl/HJ2th1

Nobody’s Trading 10-Year Japanese Government Bonds
Suryatapa Bhattacharya – The Wall Street Journal
Trading volume in Japan’s benchmark 10-year government bond has been slowing even as caution has increased in global markets since the start of February, with no exchange trading of the debt on Tuesday.
goo.gl/KgFVRa

Lawrence Kudlow to Become Trump’s White House Economic Adviser
Nick Timiraos – The Wall Street Journal
Lawrence Kudlow, a conservative economic commentator whose career included jobs in the White House, Wall Street, radio and business television, will become one of President Donald Trump’s top economic advisers as director of the National Economic Council.
goo.gl/ZjPWDY

Wells Fargo Paid CEO Timothy Sloan $17.4 Million Last Year
Emily Glazer – The Wall Street Journal
Wells Fargo & Co. awarded Chief Executive Timothy Sloan $17.4 million in compensation for 2017, his first full year leading the embattled bank. Mr. Sloan received $2.4 million in base pay, with a bonus that included shares valued at $15 million.
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Dark underbelly of the European financial system is being exposed
Simon Nixon – The Times
Something is rotten in the European financial system. Britain’s status as the global capital of money-laundering is once again back in the spotlight after the poisoning of the former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury. The British government has blamed Russia and the affair has revived concerns about the UK’s remarkable openness to the mysteriously amassed fortunes of oligarchs with links to President Putin and the extraordinary role that companies registered in the UK have played in some of the biggest money-laundering scandals of recent years.
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Exchanges, OTC and Clearing

JPX, KRX and TWSE sign trilateral Memorandum of Understanding
JPX News Release
Japan Exchange Group, Inc. (JPX), Korea Exchange (KRX) and Taiwan Stock Exchange Corporation (TWSE) signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) today. Under the MOU, the three exchanges will build a closer relationship through information sharing in areas of mutual interest and assist each other in market development in Japan, Taiwan, and South Korea. The three exchanges have a framework for cooperation and collaboration through personnel exchanges and joint market promotion. Mr. Akira Kiyota, Group CEO of JPX, said, “We are very pleased to be expanding our cooperation with KRX and TWSE. This MOU will provide even greater opportunity for the three exchanges to strengthen our cooperative relationships to further develop capital markets in Asia.”
goo.gl/66Es1i

Societe Generale joins Euronext’s Best Execution service for retail investors
Euronext
Societe Generale and Euronext announced today they are joining forces to offer retail investors “Best of Book”, Euronext’s best execution service. This service will enable customers in Societe Generale’s French network to benefit from a greater quality of order execution on the exchange at a competitive price
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CurveGlobal launches client incentive programme; The new programme will award up to 10% of CurveGlobal equity capital to the largest customers.
By Hayley McDowell
The London Stock Exchange Group’s (LSEG) interest rate derivatives platform CurveGlobal has developed a new customer partnership incentive programme.
/goo.gl/SwoqsE

Billionaire Alan Howard Makes a Bet on Cryptocurrencies
Alastair Marsh and Nishant Kumar – Bloomberg
Hedge fund billionaire Alan Howard made sizable personal investments in cryptocurrencies last year and plans to put more of his own money into digital assets and the blockchain technology behind them, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
goo.gl/8pehMe

Publication of JPX Working Paper, Vol.22 “Study on Applicability of Distributed Ledger Technology in Trade Matching Processes”
JPX
Japan Exchange Group, Inc. (JPX) today published JPX Working Paper, Vol.22 “Study on Applicability of Distributed Ledger Technology in Trade Matching Processes”.
/goo.gl/eZSmC1

JPX, KRX and TWSE sign trilateral Memorandum of Understanding
JPX
Japan Exchange Group, Inc. (JPX), Korea Exchange (KRX) and Taiwan Stock Exchange Corporation (TWSE) signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) today.
/goo.gl/QxTBzy

Fintech

OANDA Partners With Dell Boomi To Provide seamless Itegration Of Rates API With Major ERP Systems
MondoVisione
A global leader in corporate and consumer foreign exchange solutions, OANDA recently announced a collaboration with Dell Boomi™, a leading provider of cloud integration and workflow automation software, to offer the OANDA Exchange Rates API Connector to all Dell Boomi™ customers.
/goo.gl/4IA3xV

Hackers learn to hurdle two-factor authentication; Biometrics, apps and machine learning are adding layers of security
Hannah Kuchler – FT
For years, cyber security experts have been urging users to add a second layer of authentication to their accounts, often a code sent by text message to their phone.
/goo.gl/h9rAoh

Itiviti and ULLINK complete merger to build a global technology force in the capital markets industry; Torben Munch appointed CEO; The Board of Directors of Itiviti AB announces that the transaction to merge the company with ULLINK was completed on March 14, 2018.
Itiviti
With annual sales exceeding $200 million, 1,000 employees and local presence in major financial markets across Europe, Asia-Pacific and the Americas, the combination of Itiviti and ULLINK creates a full-service technology and infrastructure provider for global and regional financial institutions.
/goo.gl/JmF75N

Cryptocurrencies

Billionaire Alan Howard Makes a Bet on Cryptocurrencies
Alastair Maresh, Nishant Kumar – Bloomberg
Hedge fund billionaire Alan Howard made sizable personal investments in cryptocurrencies last year and plans to put more of his own money into digital assets and the blockchain technology behind them, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
/goo.gl/rPbFPD

The Bitcoin Fad Is Fading—for Now
Olga Kharif – Bloomberg
Google searches and tweets about bitcoin decline sharply; The number of stories proclaiming death of bitcoin rises
Suddenly, Bitcoin seems a bit boring. It might be hard to believe. But after the 1,400 percent rally of 2017, with wild swings along the way, the great crypto craze has cooled, at least for now. For the past month, Bitcoin’s price has stalled between $8,500 and $11,300 — a minuscule range by its standards. And internet searches for “Bitcoin” have plunged, suggesting public interest has, too.
/goo.gl/fbpBuu

Politics

Donald Trump admits making up ‘facts’ in trade meeting with Justin Trudeau; US president told donors ‘I had no idea’ when he complained to Canada’s prime minister over (non-existent) trade deficit
David Smith in Washington – The Guardian
Donald Trump bragged that he made up facts in a meeting with the Canadian prime minister, Justin Trudeau, according to an audio recording obtained by the Washington Post.
/goo.gl/hQNnpS

Lawrence Kudlow to Become Trump’s White House Economic Adviser
Nick Timiraos – WSJ
Lawrence Kudlow, a conservative economic commentator whose career included jobs in the White House, Wall Street, radio and business television, will become one of President Donald Trump’s top economic advisers as director of the National Economic Council. Mr. Kudlow, 70 years old, said he was offered the job after a series of recent phone conversations with the president in which the two discussed differences of opinion about trade, among other things.
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****SD: CNBC here.

TV economist Larry Kudlow to translate Trump’s vision
Barney Jopson – Financial Times
Minutes after being confirmed as Donald Trump’s new top economic adviser, putting him at the centre of momentous decisions on trade and tax, Larry Kudlow was preparing to spend the first hour of the new era in an old habitat: on the set of CNBC, Wall Street’s favourite cable channel.
The 70-year-old from New Jersey is a made-for-TV economist, a chatty Reaganite commentator with an everyman touch. He can express wonkery in plain English and dodge awkward questions with a smile, while ensuring the world appreciates that he has friends who are great people in high places.
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National School Walkout: Thousands Protest Against Gun Violence Across the U.S.
Vivian Yee And Alan Blinderup – NY Times
A month ago, hundreds of teenagers ran for their lives from the hallways and classrooms of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where 17 students and staff had been shot to death.
/goo.gl/s91Q66

LSE’s Woolcock Says Trump Is ‘Upping the Ante’ on Trade
Bloomberg Daybreak: Europe
Stephen Woolcock, associate professor at the London School of Economics, discusses global trade and impact from U.S. tariffs. He speaks with Matt Miller on “Bloomberg Daybreak: Europe.” (Source: Bloomberg)
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Regulation

SEC Charges Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes With Fraud; Silicon Valley’s first female billionaire startup founder gives up control of her company as part of settlement with regulators
John Carreyrou – WSJ
Theranos Inc. Chief Executive Elizabeth Holmes, widely hailed as Silicon Valley’s first female billionaire startup founder, agreed to a settlement with federal regulators that strips her of voting control, bans her from being an officer or director of any public company for 10 years and requires her to pay a $500,000 penalty.
/goo.gl/ac7d5T

Remarks of Commissioner Rostin Behnam before the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s International Regulators Meeting, Boca Raton, Florida
CFTC
Thank you for the kind introduction. It is a pleasure to be with you today. Before I begin, just a quick housekeeping note that the views contained in this speech are my own and do not represent the views of the Commission. Before I dive into the main topic of my remarks this afternoon, I want to spend some time sharing some key points from my first six months at the CFTC, and my vision for the next six months and beyond.
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Keynote Address of Commissioner Brian Quintenz before FIA Annual Meeting, Boca Raton, Florida
CFTC
…Trust is fundamental and essential to our international engagements. It is the foundation of successful collaboration and goodwill between regulators. Participation in international standards-setting bodies and bilateral discussions with foreign regulators depend on trust.
/goo.gl/FFgnec

Former Equifax Executive Charged With Insider Trading
SEC
The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged a former chief information officer of a U.S. business unit of Equifax with insider trading in advance of the company’s September 2017 announcement about a massive data breach that exposed the social security numbers and other personal information of about 148 million U.S. customers.
/goo.gl/3T9MdM

Theranos, CEO Holmes, and Former President Balwani Charged With Massive Fraud Holmes Stripped of Control of Company for Defrauding Investors
SEC
The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged Silicon Valley-based private company Theranos Inc., its founder and CEO Elizabeth Holmes, and its former President Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani with raising more than $700 million from investors through an elaborate, years-long fraud in which they exaggerated or made false statements about the company’s technology, business, and financial performance. Theranos and Holmes have agreed to resolve the charges against them. Importantly, in addition to a penalty, Holmes has agreed to give up majority voting control over the company, as well as to a reduction of her equity which, combined with shares she previously returned, materially reduces her equity stake.
/goo.gl/ZGTocL

Ex-Equifax Executive Charged With Insider Trading Tied to ’17 Breach
Stacey Cowley – The New York Times
A former top Equifax executive was charged on Wednesday with insider trading for selling nearly $1 million in company stock after he learned about a major data breach in 2017 but before it was publicly announced. Jun Ying, the former chief information officer of Equifax’s core United States consumer reporting division, exercised all of his vested stock options and sold nearly $1 million in shares a little more than a week before Equifax announced that hackers had broken into its systems, according to the Securities and Exchange Commission.
goo.gl/bFykPf

SEC Proposes Transaction Fee Pilot for NMS Stocks
SEC Press Release
Washington D.C., March 14, 2018 — The Securities and Exchange Commission today voted to propose new Rule 610T of Regulation NMS to conduct a Transaction Fee Pilot in NMS stocks. The proposed pilot would subject stock exchange transaction fee pricing, including “maker-taker” fee-and-rebate pricing models, to new temporary pricing restrictions across three test groups, and require the exchanges to prepare and publicly post data.
goo.gl/PhtWCE

How bitcoin IRA investments bypass U.S. fiduciary protections
Mark Miller – Reuters
Bitcoin in an IRA? You might think holding a volatile, unregulated investment like cryptocurrency in a retirement account would violate the U.S. Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule, which took effect last summer. But despite the risks, the “bitcoin accepted here” shingle is hanging proudly in the Wild West of retirement investing – self-directed Individual Retirement Accounts.
goo.gl/y4tupi

SEC Proposes Targeted Changes to Public Liquidity Risk Management Disclosure
SEC
The Securities and Exchange Commission today proposed amendments to public liquidity-related disclosure requirements for certain open-end investment management companies. Under the proposal, funds would discuss in their annual report the operation and effectiveness of their liquidity risk management program, replacing a pending requirement that funds publicly provide the aggregate liquidity classification profile of their portfolios on Form N-PORT on a quarterly basis.
/goo.gl/XCy4QR

SEC Proposes Transaction Fee Pilot for NMS Stocks
SEC
The Securities and Exchange Commission today voted to propose new Rule 610T of Regulation NMS to conduct a Transaction Fee Pilot in NMS stocks.
/goo.gl/kiEFCr

Report from FINRA Board of Governors Meeting – March 2018
FINRA
FINRA’s Board of Governors held its first meeting of 2018 on March 7-8 in New York, where it approved two new rule proposals and FINRA’s 2018 corporate goals, as well as reviewed the progress of the ongoing FINRA360 organizational improvement initiative introduced nearly one year ago.
/goo.gl/NjYs2Y

March 2018 Board Update
FINRA
FINRA President and CEO Robert Cook, Chairman Bill Heyman, Board members and FINRA staff provide updates on the March 2018 FINRA Board of Governors meeting.
/goo.gl/AESCXT

Ex-Equifax Executive Charged With Insider Trading Tied to ’17 Breach
Stacy Cowley – NY Times
A former top Equifax executive was charged on Wednesday with insider trading for selling nearly $1 million in company stock after he learned about a major data breach in 2017 but before it was publicly announced.
/goo.gl/ydRE65

ASIC releases market integrity report
ASIC
ASIC has today released its latest report on market integrity for the period 1 July to 31 December 2017.
/goo.gl/4XutbX

Investing and Trading

These Huge Fund Outflows Show Growing Distaste for U.S. Dollar
Dani Burger and Sid Verma – Bloomberg
Investors rotate out of hedged ETFs in favor of unhedged funds; Europe, Japan flows suggest weak greenback in 2018: Deutsche
Here’s one sign that investors remain hostile to the dollar: Buyers of U.S.-listed funds are rushing into European and Japanese stocks without currency protection.
/goo.gl/JyedUC

Why It’s So Hard to Replace Libor
John Glover – Bloomberg
Libor, the London interbank offered rate, for decades was a reliable benchmark set daily by banks to determine interest rates on everything from student loans and mortgages to derivatives and credit cards. But ever since European and U.S. banks were found to have manipulated rates to benefit their own portfolios, the benchmark has been seen as tainted. Along with its kinfolk — Euribor for the euro and Tibor for the yen — Libor is probably headed for history’s scrap heap in a few years. But with more than $370 trillion in financial contracts pegged to Libor, it can’t just disappear. That has presented bankers with a big headache: figuring out how to cause the least amount of market disruption in the transition to more reliable and transparent substitutes.
/goo.gl/NhwBpD

Opinion: This emerging-market ETF continues to blow away the competition
Philip Van Doorn – MarketWatch
Back in July 2015, during the middle of a major pullback for shares of Chinese companies, Kevin Carter, the founder of the Emerging Markets Internet & Ecommerce ETF, said his fund had significant downside protection when compared to the dominant emerging-markets index funds and ETFs, as well as better upside potential.
goo.gl/HexTT2

CurveGlobal launches Jump Ball, a customer partnership programme?
CurveGlobal
CurveGlobal announced today its intention to launch Jump Ball, a customer partnership incentive programme to start on 3 April 2018, subject to regulatory approval. The programme will award up to a total of 10% of CurveGlobal’s equity capital to participants – up to 9% through six quarterly assessment periods and a final award of 1% to the largest participant at the end of the scheme.
/goo.gl/DqkwS7

Institutions

Société Générale slides after abrupt resignation of deputy CEO
David Keohane – FT
Société Générale’s shares fell in Paris on Thursday morning after the bank’s deputy chief executive resigned in a sudden move linked with the Libor rate-rigging scandal.
/goo.gl/HzeLHG

Wells Fargo Paid CEO Timothy Sloan $17.4 Million Last Year; He is still dealing with a scandal over the bank’s sales practices
Emily Glazer – WSJ
Wells Fargo awarded Chief Executive Timothy Sloan $17.4 million in compensation for 2017, his first full year leading the embattled bank.
/goo.gl/htVcio

Och-Ziff to Shut European Hedge Fund as New CEO Shifts Focus
By Nishant Kumar and Katia Porzecanski
Och-Ziff Capital Management Group LLC is shutting its European hedge fund as the firm refocuses on its main products under the new leadership of Robert Shafir, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
goo.gl/faCgiZ

Credit Suisse Sued by Investor Over Volatility Note That Crashed
Noah Buhayar – Bloomberg
Investor accuses firm, leaders of manipulating notes’ price; Bank disputes claim, says product was for sophisticated buyers
Credit Suisse Group AG was sued by an investor who got burned last month betting against stock-market turmoil, as more people seek to recoup steep losses on VIX exchange-traded products.
/goo.gl/JDGwfY

Deutsche Bank Hires in Geneva, Miami for Wealthy Latin Americans
Jonathan Levin, Dakin Campbell – Bloomberg
Deutsche Bank AG hired three bankers, including a managing director, to help bolster its business for wealthy Latin American clients.
/goo.gl/CJaE95

Regions

Swiss Take No Chances on Franc as Intervention Threat Maintained
Catherine Bosley – Bloomberg
Deposit rate at minus 0.75%, as forecast by economists; Swiss central bank says franc remains ‘highly valued’
President Thomas Jordan isn’t taking any chances with the franc even with the currency within striking distance of what was once the Swiss National Bank’s red line.
/goo.gl/GBtaey

Swiss parliament rejects call to return 1MDB profits to Malaysia
Michael Shields and Edmund Blair – Reuters
Switzerland’s parliament rejected on Thursday a bid to amend the law handling ill-gotten bank profits seized by authorities that had aimed to return more than $100 million linked to scandal-hit sovereign fund 1MDB to the Malaysian people.
Champions of the campaign had acknowledged they faced an uphill struggle to get the idea through parliament, whose lower house shot the plan down at the request of the government.
goo.gl/XXT57T

Exclusive: Gazprom to cut hundreds of traders as Kremlin retreats from West
Christian Lowe – Reuters
Russian gas giant Gazprom will cut hundreds of jobs at its overseas trading and export offices, including Britain, and move them to St Petersburg, according to two sources familiar with the plan, which comes at a time of rising tensions with the West.
/goo.gl/L3kneS

Sebi plans to link retail investors’ exposure to derivatives with income; Sebi plans to address with the new norms any inefficiencies present in the market
Press Trust of India
Markets regulator Sebi is considering linking retail investors’ exposure to derivatives with their income, a move aimed at preventing them from taking unreasonable positions in risky instruments.
/goo.gl/DWQTGK

How the financial crash made our cities unaffordable; Since 2008, property markets in the world’s major cities have ‘synchronised’ and left nations and citizens behind
Nathan Brooker – FT
In the stormy spring of 2008, the UK’s worsening property downturn was yet to hit Sloane Street in central London. A full year after the start of the credit crunch and the run on Northern Rock — which started a slide that would see more than 20 per cent chalked off the average house price — the local Savills office was still processing bumper sales.
/goo.gl/se4t2K

Brussels under fire over Barroso’s move to Goldman; EU watchdog calls for a formal reassessment over position at investment bank
Alex Barker in Brussels – FT
The European Commission has come under renewed fire for mishandling the ethical issues raised by the move of José Manuel Barroso, its former president, to Goldman Sachs.
/goo.gl/c6NteC

China’s $814 Billion Fund Will Cut Exposure to Volatile Markets
Bloomberg News
CIC unveils 3-year plan to boost alternative investments; Wealth fund has capacity to pull off big deals, president says
China’s $930 billion sovereign wealth fund plans to expand investments in areas such as real estate, hedge funds, infrastructure and private equity for more stable returns, as it reduces exposure to volatile public markets.
/goo.gl/a7Pb3A

Singapore and Paris Top World’s Most Expensive Cities
Melissa Check – Bloomberg
Low inflation pushes Tokyo and Osaka further down the ranks; European cities account for half of top 10 most expensive
Pedestrian stand on a promenade in Singapore. Photographer: Ore Huiying/Bloomberg
Singapore is the world’s most expensive city for the fifth straight year in the Economist Intelligence Unit’s latest Worldwide Cost of Living report, with Paris and Zurich tied for second place.
/goo.gl/9SeZPj

Dark underbelly of the European financial system is being exposed
Simon Nixon – The Times
Something is rotten in the European financial system. Britain’s status as the global capital of money-laundering is once again back in the spotlight after the poisoning of the former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury. The British government has blamed Russia and the affair has revived concerns about the UK’s remarkable openness to the mysteriously amassed fortunes of oligarchs with links to President Putin and the extraordinary role that companies registered in the UK have played in some of the biggest money-laundering scandals of recent years
/goo.gl/BGzo9e

Miscellaneous

Wikipedia’s forgotten women: inside the editing marathon to fix imbalance; The fifth annual event at the National Museum of Women in the Arts aims to arm volunteers with tools and knowledge to bring gender equality to the platform
Nadja Sayej – The Guardian
There’s a better way to celebrate Women’s History Month than simply buying Hillary Clinton’s new book.
/goo.gl/bueRiK

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About Author

Bergstrom is chief information officer of John J. Lothian & Co. He edits MarketsWiki and JLN Options.