Industry news

Date: Jul 2, 2012

July 2, 2012: Esma probes agencies’ views on banks; Fed official floats stress tests of money funds; Oslo Børs to cut opening hours

European regulator Esma takes a closer look at the three largest credit rating agencies, to see if those companies are sufficiently rigorous in their activity. An official in the Federal Reserve suggests expanding future bank stress tests to include sponsored mutual fund data.  In a sign of the “reduced volume” times, the stock exchange in Oslo is cutting back its trading hours in an effort to increase trading volume in the remaining open hours.

First Read

Floor traders feel swept aside
By Lynne Marek – Crain’s
Chicago’s floor traders, exemplars of a swashbuckling, commodity-based capitalism that has thrived here for more than 160 years, are fearful that their days are numbered—and that their own company is delivering the death blow. CME Group Inc., which operates exchanges, has implemented a series of changes this year in pricing, hours and other areas.

**** Is the final activity a wave or a swirl?


FINRA’s top lobbying executive departing
Reuters via Yahoo! News
The top public relations and lobbying executive for Wall Street’s industry-funded regulator is leaving, FINRA confirmed on Friday. Howard Schloss, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s head of corporate communications and government relations, will end his 12-year run with the regulator in September.


NASDAQ OMX BX Options Options Exchange Joins OCC
OCC and The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc. announced today that NASDAQ OMX BX Options has become an OCC participant exchange. NASDAQ OMX BX Options began operations today, Friday, June 29.


Newedge hit by trader exodus
By Hal Weitzman in Chicago – Financial Times
Newedge, the world’s biggest independent futures broker, is facing a raft of departures from its metals team as traders are being poached by Jefferies, the US investment bank, according to people familiar with the situation. The exodus of up to 20 traders from the company, a joint venture between Crédit Agricole and Société Générale, comes amid growing concern over the future of the four-year-old company following a string of high-profile exits.

**** The world is changing right around us.  


Massive Furor in UK Over Libor Manipulation; Where’s the Outrage Here?
Naked Capitalism
In case it isn’t yet apparent to you, the unfolding scandal over manipulation of Libor and its Euro counterpart Euribor is a huge deal. Even though at this point, only Barclays, the UK bank that was first to settle, is in the hot lights, at least 16 other major financial players, which means pretty much everybody, is implicated.

**** I am outraged!!!  There, does that help?


Financial Giants Are Moving Jobs Off Wall Street
New York’s biggest investment houses are shifting jobs out of the area and expanding in cheaper locales in the United States, threatening the vast middle tier of positions that form the backbone of employment on Wall Street.


In Caymans, It’s Simple to Fill a Hedge Fund Board
Just off the tarmac at the Grand Cayman International Airport, visitors were recently greeted by colorful banners advertising the Caribbean island’s sunny offerings: waterfront seafood restaurants, tax-free shopping — and hedge fund directors for hire.


Analyst price targets are stupid
Barry Randall – optionMonster
You’ve seen and heard them, those simple declarations by analysts professing to see the future: price targets. It’s not enough to simply think a stock is a buy, sell or hold. Heck no. The analyst has to pinpoint exactly where (and sometimes even when) a stock will hit a particular price. Am I alone in thinking that this is insane?


Twitter takes wing on Wall Street
By Tracy Alloway – Financial Times
Last week, Morgan Stanley’s internal risk committee gave the green light for all of the more than 17,000 financial advisers in its MSSB business to use Twitter and LinkedIn, the professional networking site. While the company had initially planned to allow all its financial advisers to use social media last year, it has taken much longer than expected for the bank to expand the capability.

NYSE Liffe U.S. Celebrates First Year as the Home of mini MSCI Futures
NYSE Liffe U.S., the innovative U.S. futures exchange of NYSE Euronext (NYX) today celebrates the one-year anniversary as the sole U.S. futures exchange trading contracts based on MSCI indices by announcing key performance and customer adoption metrics. These metrics demonstrate that mini MSCI futures on NYSE Liffe U.S. have experienced significant growth in volume and open interest over the past year, particularly in the contracts based on the benchmark MSCI Emerging Markets and MSCI EAFE indices.


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Lead Stories

Esma probes agencies’ views on banks
By Brooke Masters in London – Financial Times
The pan-European markets regulator has launched a probe into the way the big three credit rating agencies evaluate banks to determine if the process is sufficiently rigorous and transparent, its chairman Steven Maijoor told the Financial Times.

Fed official floats stress tests of money funds
Reuters via Yahoo! News
A top U.S. Federal Reserve official floated the idea on Friday of expanding bank “stress tests” to include the likely support those institutions would need to provide to sponsored money market mutual funds.

Oslo Børs to cut opening hours
By Philip Stafford in London – Financial Times
Oslo Børs, the Norwegian stock exchange, is to tackle bourses’ growing concerns about low trading volumes and capital raisings for listed companies – by cutting its opening times.

Brazilian Banks Set to Meet Basel III Ahead of Schedule
Mayra Rodríguez Valladares
Even before implementation starts, Brazilian banks and investors are already being impacted. In an attempt to meet the 2013 Brazilian deadline, banks have begun to issue securities. Yet, according to Brazil’s central bank director Anthero Meirelles, many Brazilian banks will be able to meet Basel III regulatory requirements without having to raise new capital, since they have enough in retained profits.

Barclays CEO: market fixes were for protection
The chief executive of Barclays says the bank submitted false data on borrowing costs during the credit crisis in 2007 and 2008 to protect its reputation from suspicions that it was in trouble, a decision he says was wrong.

Barclays chairman resigns amid rate-fixing scandal
By Jim Boulden, CNN
London (CNN) — Barclays on Monday announced the resignation of its chairman, Marcus Agius, in the widening scandal surrounding the bank’s manipulation of interbank lending rates in 2008 and 2009.
In a statement to the London Stock Exchange, Agius said the scandal has “dealt a devastating blow” to Barclays’ reputation.

Concerns over Libor rate raised in 2007
By Brooke Masters and Patrick Jenkins in London – Financial Times
Bankers, traders and investors complained to US and UK central banks and regulators that false information was being supplied for the setting of a critical London lending rate as early as 2007. But only the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the US regulator, jumped on the issue and started demanding information about the setting of Libor, the London interbank offered rate, which is the benchmark for $360tn in mortgages, credit cards and other contracts worldwide.

MF Global creditors may get up to $3.2bn
By Philip Stafford – Financial Times
MF Global UK’s administrator on Friday said it could return up to $3.2bn to creditors but warned it faces claims on the estate potentially totalling $3.9bn.


CFTC Said to Vote 5-0 to Propose Cross-Border Swaps Guidance (1)
By Silla Brush – Bloomberg
The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission voted to propose guidance for the international reach of Dodd-Frank Act derivatives rules for JPMorgan Chase & Co., Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and other financial institutions, according to two people briefed on the matter.

CFTC Approves Phased Compliance Proposal for Certain Swap Regulations
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (Commission) today voted to propose a phased compliance program regarding certain swaps to non-U.S. swap dealers, non-U.S. major swap participants, U.S. swap dealers, U.S. major swap participants, and foreign branches of U.S. swap dealers and U.S. major swap participants.

Doubts Greet Plan for Euro Zone Bank Regulator
New York Times
A pledge to create a central bank regulator for the European Union has analysts asking whether the new agency would be given the power to rein in risky practices and hold offending banks accountable.

FINRA Takes $84M Fiscal Year Loss
FOX Business
The U.S. securities industry’s self-funded regulator lost $84 million last year because of weak industry trading volume and low returns on its investment portfolio.

Statement Of Support – CFTC Chairman Gary Gensler

Statement of Support – CFTC Chairman Gary Gensler – Compliance For Foreign Swap Dealers

Statement Of Concurrence: (1) Proposed Interpretive Guidance And Policy Statement Regarding Section 2(i) Of The Commodity Exchange Act – And (2) Notice Of Proposed Exemptive Order – CFTC Commissioner Scott D. O’Malia

“Not The Boss”: Statement Of CFTC Commissioner Bart Chilton On Cross Border:

Pension Funds As Owners And Investors: A Voice For Working Families By SEC Commissioner Luis A. Aguilar

SIFMA Cautions On CFTC Cross-Border Guidance

ESMA Has Published Its Feedback Statement – Call For Evidence On Empty Voting

MiFID II Pre-Trade Transparency Proposals On The Fixed-Income Market Will Impact Liquidity, Trading Costs And Ability To Raise Capital, Says TABB Group Study – Sees Potential Unintended Consequences For The Fixed-Income Markets, Its Investors, Corporations, Governments And European Economy

Short Selling: European Commission Adopts Technical Standards

Short Selling: European Commission Technical Standards – Frequently Asked Questions

Federal Reserve Board And Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Announce Process For Receiving And Evaluating Initial Resolution Plans, Also Known As Living Wills

FSA calls for tighter laws against failing bankers
The law should be tightened to tackle misbehaviour in banking, says the head of the Financial Services Authority.

ASIC launches website for publishing insolvency and other notices

Joint ASIC – Financial Markets Authority media release: Trans-Tasman mutual recognition of financial advisers announced

Exchanges & Trading Facilities

NYSE Euronext Raised $17.1 billion in global IPO proceeds in First Half of 2012
In the first half of 2012, NYSE Euronext (NYX) raised $17.1 billion in total global proceeds from Initial Public Offerings (IPO) on 66 IPOs. In the U.S., NYSE Euronext listed 62% of all U.S. IPOs bringing 56 new IPOs to the U.S. market, recently ending the quarter with the successful listing of ServiceNow, Inc. (NYSE: NOW). Additionally in the U.S., NYSE gained eight listing transfers. In Europe, NYSE Euronext had 16 new listings, with approximately E1.2 billion in proceeds.

JSE’s New Equity Trading Platform In SA After Decade In London – Move Marks New Era For Exchange
The Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) celebrates the start of a new era for its equity market today with the launch of equity trading platform Millennium Exchange, developed by technology solutions provider MillenniumIT. The day also marks the moving of the platform from London, where the trading engine has been situated for ten years, to the JSE building in Johannesburg.

Oslo Børs To Reduce Opening Hours
Oslo Børs will from 6 August reduce the opening hours for trading equities and derivatives with one hour, and close at 16:30 CET. The measure is done to improve quality and liquidity throughout the trading day and at the same time strengthen the strongest Nordic market for capital issues by allowing more time for fundraising after exchange opening hours.
NYSE Announces Third-Quarter 2012 Circuit-Breaker Levels

DealBook: Its I.P.O. Botched, Facebook Looks Hard at Nasdaq
New York Times
Tensions are so high that the social networking company is still considering switching exchanges and is weighing the costs of such a move, officials there said.

KTG Energie AG joins Entry Standard

ServiceNow Celebrates its IPO on the New York Stock Exchange

Aggregated Market Shares In Sweden, June 2012 – Burgundy And Nasdaq OMX
In cooperation with SIX Telekurs, Burgundy publishes aggregated market shares in Swedish equities on a monthly basis, in order to provide a better picture of the market.

[CBOE] Trader E-News

[CBOE] July 2012 Fee Changes

[CBOE] Automation of Stock-Option Strategy Orders

[CBOE] Stock Portion of Stock-Strategy Orders

[CBOE] Modification to Options Regulatory Fee

TOM MTF Statistics Week 26 2012

Hedge Funds & Managed Futures

Tudor Said to Open First Macro Hedge Fund in Decade
Tudor Investment Corp. opened a $500 million hedge fund, its first new fund to bet on macroeconomic trends in a decade, according to four investors briefed on the matter.

Global IPO Market Keeps Shrinking
The global IPO market continued its downward track in the second quarter, notching its fourth consecutive period of declining deals in nearly every corner of the world.

Is buy and hold dying a quick death?
Reuters via Yahoo! Finance
Portfolio volatility is your sworn enemy if you’re nearing retirement or market downturns make you nauseous. But if you’re a buy-and-hold investor – and believe that stock market risk diminishes over time – you still need a new course of action.

[Video] Hedge Fund Trading Trends, Outlook
Jeremy Hill, chief operating officer of the U.S. research department at Societe Generale, talks about hedge fund trades. He spoke on June 21 with Deirdre Bolton on Bloomberg Television’s “Money Moves.”

Citigroup Moves Trader Putcha to Help Internal Hedge Fund
Citigroup Inc. has moved Ramakrishna Putcha, a former proprietary trader, into an internal hedge fund that makes bets with about $200 million of the firm’s money after the portfolio slid 14 percent last year.

Where Is The London Whale? Data Doesn’t Show JPM Selling Most Of The Position
Media reports about the size of the London Whale losses suffered by JPMorgan’s CIO have gone all over the place, from $2 to $9 billion; there has also been talk about JPMorgan offloading most of that position. But most of that doesn’t appear supported by trade data.

Hedge Fund Manager Wants Lehman Brokerage Trustee Cash Soon
Dow Jones
A hedge fund manager is demanding that the trustee unwinding the brokerage of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. use more than $3 billion in its reserves to quickly make payments to customer claimants, saying the trustee’s “aspirational date” to pay those claims keeps slipping “further and further into the future.”

Investors scour the globe for ‘alpha’
The Desert Sun
Lawrence Speidell, chief investment officer for Frontier Market Asset Managment, stands in his offices in La Jolla. Looking to spread their bets in the event of another market drop, investors are buying oddball assets and heading to risky corners of the globe.

Banks & Brokers

Barclays chairman quits over Libor, Diamond clings on
Reuters via Yahoo! News
LONDON – Barclays Plc Chairman Marcus Agius quit on Monday, saying “the buck stops with me” after an interest rate rigging scandal dealt “a devastating blow” to the bank’s reputation. But his resignation did not take the heat off chief executive Bob Diamond, who is also under pressure to go.

Four RBS traders sacked for fixing bank rate
AFP via Yahoo! News
Four traders from the Royal Bank of Scotland were sacked at the end of 2011 for their alleged role in fixing inter-bank interest rates, banking industry sources said on Sunday.

Japan’s Nomura to cut executive pay over leaks
AFP via Yahoo! News
Top Japanese brokerage Nomura Holdings said Friday that it would temporarily cut its most senior executives’ pay by as much as half in the wake of an embarrassing insider trading scandal at the firm.

At Nomura, Tips on Offerings Were Routine
In September of 2010, at the request of a client, an equity salesman at Nomura Holdings Inc. pulled out all the stops to get some valuable inside information: tips on whether his company would be underwriting a share offering of a big Japanese blue-chip company.

RBS CEO Hester to waive bonus after IT debacle
Reuters via Yahoo! News
LONDON – Part-nationalized Royal Bank of Scotland confirmed Chief Executive Stephen Hester will waive his bonus this year following the computer systems failure which caused disruption to millions of its customers. “I think it’s inappropriate for me to have a bonus this year. We have let our customers down,” Hester said in an interview with the BBC on Friday.

ICAP cuts up to 100 staff as industry struggles
Reuters via Yahoo! News
ICAP is cutting up to 100 staff in London and New York, people familiar with the matter told Reuters, as the world’s largest derivatives broker aims to drive down costs by 50 million pounds ($77.5 million) this year.

Sallie Krawcheck Just Broke Down The Real Problem With The JP Morgan Loss In One Sentence
Business Insider
Sallie Krawcheck, the former President of Merrill Lynch Wealth Management was just on Bloomberg talking banking with Tom Keene and Brad Hintz of Sanford Bernstein.

Sack withdraws resignation, to remain at NY Fed
Reuters via Yahoo! News
NEW YORK – Brian Sack, who oversees the Federal Reserve’s open market actions, and who was to leave the New York Fed bank later on Friday, will instead stay on as senior policy advisor to President William Dudley.

Citigroup Taps Bond Market
Dow Jones
Citigroup Inc. sold $750 million of 10-year bonds Friday, its first new issue since Moody’s Investors Service unleashed a wave of downgrades on global financial institutions earlier this month.

Clearing & Settlement

CME Group Clearing Advisory
NYMEX Options Expiration Operational Procedures for the Trading Floor and Clearing Members (C1) Effective Monday, July 2, 2012

CME Clearing – New Product Advisory
East-West Gasoline Spread (Platts-Argus) Swap Futures

CME Clearing – New Product Advisory
Japan C&F Naphtha (Platts) Average Price Option/ Singapore Mogas 92 Unleaded (Platts) Average Price Option

CME Group Clearing Advisory
IMPORTANT: Review of Collateral Haircut Advisory

Indexes & Products

Swiss & Global lists four active ETFs on Xetra

Direxion Modifies Eight Exchange-Traded Funds


Agder Energi Further Expands Collaboration With Brady Plc For Managing Its Business-Critical Trading Operations

Renaissance Capital Goes Live On Calypso – Leading Emerging Markets Investment Bank Modernizes Back-Office Operations


SEC Charges Peter Madoff With Fraud and False Statements to Regulators
The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged Peter Madoff, the brother of Bernie Madoff, with committing fraud, making false statements to regulators, and falsifying books and records in order to create the false appearance of a functioning compliance program over Madoff’s fraudulent investment advisory operations.

Ex-Citigroup VP gets eight years for stealing $22 million
Reuters via Yahoo! News
NEW YORK – A former Citigroup Inc vice president who admitted to embezzling more than $22 million was sentenced on Friday to 8 years in prison, federal prosecutors said. Gary Foster, 35, pleaded guilty in September to siphoning the money from his employer between 2003 and 2010, transferring the funds to Citigroup’s cash account before wiring it into his own personal account

Former financial planner pleads guilty to deceptive and dishonest conduct

Former chief financial officer of OnQ Group Ltd sentenced

Environmental & Energy

Australia kicks off carbon tax, PM future in doubt
Australia on Sunday joins a growing number of nations to impose a price on carbon emissions across its $1.4 trillion economy in a bitterly contested reform that offers trading opportunities for banks and polluters but may cost the prime minister her job.

**JK – Political will has always been the backbone for this market. Let’s see who has it and answer the question, can an effective and efficient carbon market work?

Prepping price tag on pollution
Brisbane Times
IN 1967, a pair of brilliant young American researchers, Ellison Burton and William Sanjour, were given the task of finding an answer to the most terrifying environmental threat of the day: acid rain. The causes of acid rain were well understood – sulphur dioxide emissions from power stations reacted with water molecules in the atmosphere and fell back to earth, killing plants, stripping paint, corroding metal and stone.

**JK – Nice historical context for Australia’s move to tax and then trade carbon.

Gazprom targets Asian liquefied gas market
Russian energy giant Gazprom plans to become a dominant presence on the liquefied natural gas market by targeting booming demand in Asia, chief executive Alexei Miller told an annual meeting on Friday. “In the near future, Gazprom will become a major player on the LNG market,” the head of the world’s largest natural gas company told company shareholders.


ETF offers first direct exposure to China shares
By Paul J Davies in Hong Kong – Financial Times
The Hong Kong arm of China Asset Management, one of the mainland’s largest fund managers, will launch the first exchange traded fund on the island that can invest directly in Chinese shares.

In the IPO capital of the world, Western banks go hungry
Reuters via Yahoo! News
SHENZHEN, China – A sleepy fishing village just three decades ago, the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen last year hosted more IPOs than New York, Hong Kong and London combined – averaging one each business day, and unleashing a gush of fees for bankers, lawyers and advisers.

[TSE] Trading Overview and Preliminary Figures for June 2012

[OSE] Trading Overview in June 2012 & First Half of 2012 (January to June)

[TFX] Trading Volume in June 2012

Hong Kong’s Securities And Futures Commission: Approval Of Mainland-Traded Hong Kong Stock ETFs And Hong Kong-lLsted RQFII A-Share ETF

Frontier Markets

Investcorp buys Austrian online firm for $178 million
Reuters via Yahoo! News
DUBAI – Investcorp , a Bahrain-based investment firm, said on Sunday its online portfolio unit Skrill bought Austrian firm for up to 140 million euros, betting on growth in online retail sector.

DIFC Authority Publishes Its First Annual Review

BSE: Index Based Market Wide Circuit Breaker For The Quarter 1st July, 2012 To 30th September, 2012

Malawi Stock Exchange Weekly Trading Report – 29th June, 2012

MCX Weekly Market Report June 22, 2012 – June 28, 2012

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