Breaking News

Category Archives: Commentary

Commentary from the John Lothian News staff and guests editors.

Renato Mariotti for Illinois Attorney General: A Former Prosecutor and Current JLN Reader Standard

A Former Prosecutor and Current JLN Reader Is The Best Choice For Illinois AG Democratic Attorney General candidate  Renato Mariotti stopped by the John Lothian News offices in the Chicago Board of Trade Building on Tuesday, March 6 for a sit down video interview. He has been a John Lothian Newsletter reader since 2012, and he used the market and industry knowledge he gained from reading the newsletter to bolster his success as a federal prosecutor. Mariotti is a former prosecutor in the US Attorney’s office in Illinois who is seeking election to a public office for the first time and…

Bitcoin and Blockchain: A WILD Opportunity Standard

Bitcoin is not at the dizzying high it was back in December, but interest in cryptocurrencies and blockchain is still strong. The world of crypto and distributed ledger technology keeps expanding, with CME and Cboe now trading bitcoin futures, companies getting into initial coin offerings, cryptocurrency meetups forming, and the list of cryptocurrencies getting longer every week. Women In Listed Derivatives (WILD) and Morgan Lewis jointly hosted a panel on the future of blockchain and cryptocurrencies Tuesday evening to a packed house. The main takeaway on cryptocurrency from the panel was that, although crypto is a new and very speculative…

Don’t Blink, The Markets Are Changing Right In Front of Your Eyes Standard

Eighteen Years Later, Another Inflection Point Eighteen years after the start of this newsletter, the markets and its participants face new challenges that make reading JLN today even more important, relevant and necessary to keep abreast of the latest disruptive challenges. Today we find ourselves at an inflection point in the markets, with a new generation of digital natives discovering whole new opportunities in the markets, billions of dollars pouring into potentially disintermediating fintech and intense global interest in all things fintech and crypto. Back in 2000, when this newsletter was first published, the markets were facing the move from…

As SEC Subpoenas to Tech Companies in Digital Tokens Market Increase, What Issuers Need to Know Standard

  The Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) reportedly has revved up its focus and issued a significant number of subpoenas targeting technology companies in the digital token space, following on earlier pronouncements from the agency that it would expand its focus on ICOs and cryptocurrencies. The subpoena process is one of the primary weapons in the SEC’s enforcement arsenal, and ICO issuers will need to understand what they can expect over the next few weeks.  What is a subpoena? A subpoena is a formal request from the SEC staff for documents or testimony, which can be enforced with a court…

CryptoCon 2018 – Impressions Standard

You practically can’t walk down the street these days without bumping into a conference, seminar, or MeetUp about blockchain and cryptocurrencies as the bitcoin fever of 2017 has metastasized into a cottage industry bent on “figuring it out.” If the results from last week’s FinTank CryptoCon are any indication, the crypto industry is further along than you thought but still very much in its early stages. Aside from its name, which has to make any branding expert cringe, CryptoCon was excellent in terms of the quality of the speakers and breadth of material covered, not to mention strict adherence to…

The Spread – Week of 2/12 to 2/16 Standard

Manipulating, gaming, rigging – that’s the nature of VIX talk this week. But before we get to those allegations in this week’s options recap, we cover a few other stories that didn’t get as much press. The following are stories referenced in this week’s episode of The Spread: Gulf Times – China to curb option trades after one bet soared 2,250% Reuters – Colombia aims to kick-start oil hedging program – finance minister WSJ – Harvard, Hawaii Gambled on Market Calm—Then Everything Changed JLN – What’s the Deal With the VIX Manipulation Letter? Inaccuracy and Misunderstanding CNBC – Ex-CFTC head…

Call the Guinness Book – Trading Records at CME Continue Standard

In 2018, 40% of Eurodollar options trading, 84% of Treasury options trading on the screen  The hit parade continues over at CME Group. Its markets didn’t need a volatility spike to continue their volume and open interest trends, but CME got one anyway and benefitted, especially in the interest rate options complex. The exchange group already had record electronic daily activity in its interest rate options in January. On February 6, as market participants were still trying to wrap their heads around inflation concerns and a market selloff, CME Group saw 2.96 million interest rate options trade on Globex. The…

The VIX Can’t Cause Vol – Cboe’s View on Volatility ETPs Standard

As volatility began to surge in February, and then exploded on the fifth of the month, exchange traded products (ETPs) that shorted or provided inverse exposure to VIX futures came under fire. The two most popular, Credit Suisse’s VelocityShares Daily Inverse VIX Short-Term exchange traded note (ETN), ticker XIV, and ProShares’ VIX Short VIX Short-Term Futures exchange traded fund (ETF), ticker SVXY, were the main focus, as they suffered huge losses. Trading in them was halted and then Credit Suisse announced it would liquidate its note. Those two products, more than any other, put intense scrutiny on such volatility products…

Vol-cano Erupts – How’s Seth Golden Doing? Standard

Last year there were a few stories that came across the desk regarding the juniorization of firms and how removing experienced senior personnel could present risks of its own. After all, if you came into the markets in the 2010s, how would you have experience with crazy drawdowns? (Myself included.) Maybe some are ahead of the curve and have at least seen Trading Places. Well, a lot of staff just gained some experience. The options and volatility stories of the last few days are intertwined and generally fall into the following storyline in some way: 1) Markets finally welcomed volatility…