The Great Camp Alphaville Quiz — call for entries

Think you are smart and know stuff? Do you have two or three friends or colleagues who are similarly gifted?

Prove it.

Enter our fab quiz at 6pm on July 1 at Camp Alphaville, under canvas on the grounds of the Honourable Artillery Company, London. Read more

Guest post: The pitfalls of internal corporate investigations

Anil Rajani, Partner at law firm Fladgate, reckons the SFO should take a leaf out of the FCA’s book when it comes to the “self reporting” of wrong-doing within companies.

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Short Qatar stocks, long paper shredders

And so to the US Department of Justice’s indictment on Wednesday of nine Fifa officials, alleging a RICO conspiracy, wire fraud, money laundering, etc…

The indictment alleges that, between 1991 and the present, the defendants and their co-conspirators corrupted the enterprise by engaging in various criminal activities, including fraud, bribery and money laundering. Two generations of soccer officials abused their positions of trust for personal gain, frequently through an alliance with unscrupulous sports marketing executives who shut out competitors and kept highly lucrative contracts for themselves through the systematic payment of bribes and kickbacks. All told, the soccer officials are charged with conspiring to solicit and receive well over $150 million in bribes and kickbacks in exchange for their official support of the sports marketing executives who agreed to make the unlawful payments. Read more

The line-up for Camp Alphaville 2015

Yes, 80 speakers and panelists will be presenting at our annual finance festival in London on July 1. Click the image for full details.

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“Power blogger”

From the people who brought you ‘Vanity Capital’

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Calling all hoverboard manufacturers…

We have just a few spaces remaining for young fintech-focused firms wanting a bit of exhibition space at Camp Alphaville, our annual finance festival in London on July 1.

We’ve christened the exhibition Where’s my hoverboard?, not realising that some guy’s already raised $500,00 on Kickstarter to build a real one.

No matter, further details of the Alphaville hoverboard opportunity available here.  Read more

A glimpse inside the Court, IMF edition

With a big h/t to Faisal Islam, here’s what the Bank of England was thinking at the start of September and just before that IMF loan in 1976 (do click through for the full thing):

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The football club, the chemicals maker and the newspaper group. Or, Hong Kong’s $12bn of trapped capital

By Jennifer Hughes in Hong Kong

Seven weeks of silence. That’s what investors in Tianhe Chemicals have had since the short target said it needed to give its auditors more information and would delay publishing its 2014 results.

Thursday marks exactly seven weeks since it made the announcement and suspended its shares at the same time, highlighting one of the less fun aspects of the Hong Kong market – the risk of getting trapped.

A recap: Read more


You’ll have July 1 in your diaries already. If not, book now. Places are limited.

The speaker list has now topped 60 first class names. Such as…

Mystery 2016 US presidential election candidate

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Bonds: an apology

Exclusive to All Newspapers

In the last few weeks, in common with all other financial media, we may have given the impression that inflation had died forever and that it was in some way entirely rational for an investor to purchase Austrian government bonds at €220 per €100 of value.

We may further have led readers to believe that Bund yields would never stop falling that there were, officially, no more sellers of bonds…

We now realise, in light of the past few day’s events, that this is bunkum and the market does, for the moment, in fact resemble a New York rooftop bar at closing time. Read more

Where did all the greater fools go?

Ladies and gentlemen, the 10 year Bund on an increasingly painful Thursday morning (click to enlarge).

With thanks to Bill Gross Murphy for calling the top in the race to zero.

The (potentially more painful) excitement in the Italian 30 year below the fold. Read more

The trouble with market-based financing… in China

The thing about market-based financing is that market-based financing isn’t always available the way you want it.

Which is why it’s big news in China on Friday, as the FT reports, that several Chinese provincial governments have been forced to postpone bond auctions as banks balk at the low yields on offer. The news comes by way of state media.

Now, the reason this is interesting is because last month when China’s finance ministry revealed its plan for provincial governments to refinance RMB1tn in debt, analysts were super cheery about its chances of lowering debt-servicing costs and extending maturities for provincial authorities. Read more

FirstFT (the 6am Cut)

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A US drone strike killed two western hostages in an al-Qaeda compound in the Pakistan-Afghanistan border region, the White House has confirmed.

Warren Weinstein, an American held by al-Qaeda since 2011, and Giovanni Lo Porto, an Italian national who had been hostage since 2012, were killed accidentally in the counter-terrorism operation in January. The disclosure that two hostages were killed in a US strike will raise fresh questions about the limits of such operations, and whether imperfect intelligence unnecessarily risks civilian lives. (FT and NYT$)

In the news Read more

FirstFT (the new 6am Cut)

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A British futures trader who was arrested for allegedly contributing to the 2010 “flash crash” began his fight against extradition on Wednesday. Navinder Singh Sarao, a 36-year old British citizen who was operating through a company based at his parents’ house in a London suburb, was arrested at the request of US authorities and is accused of contributing to the crash. (FT)

He has been charged in Chicago with wire fraud, commodities fraud, commodities manipulation and “spoofing”, and will face trial if he is extradited. He was granted bail of £5m. (FT)


In the news Read more

The CFTC’s alleged flash crasher

Though note the causal chain in the CFTC’s press release for its complaint against trader Navinder Singh Sarao — of the Hounslow suburb, Heston…

The CFTC Complaint Alleges that Defendants’ Manipulative Conduct Contributed to the Market Conditions that Led to the May 6, 2010 Flash Crash Read more

Of free floats and nutty markets in China

Today in sentences about China you might want to pay attention to, from Macquarie:

In our view, the real level of margin finance leverage in China’s markets is actually already much higher than all the historical examples that we can find (ie, for which the data is available to us).

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A disturbance in the financial force

This is the one thing we didn’t want to happen…

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Markets Live returns at 11am

The Markets Live server hamster is back from Spring Break, refreshed and ready to roll.

ML server

Join Bryce and Murphy at 11am BST for a stroll around Chinese trade data, big oil, phantom Irish corrugated packaging M&A and all the usual nonsense. For newcomers, here’s the explainerRead more

Guest post: Getting Ukraine’s bondholders from B to A

The English-law bonds in Ukraine’s debt restructuring are a bit more local-law than bondholders might realise. How can Ukraine use that to get a deal? Here’s an interesting idea… Read more

A simpler JPMorgan

We have meaningfully simplified the company…

– Jamie Dimon’s 38-page letter to JPMorgan shareholders, April 8 2015 Read more

China short goes long

By Jennifer Hughes in Hong Kong

Watchers of the Hong Kong market might have classified a China short seller going long as a pigs-might-fly situation. But Shenguan Holdings, a maker of sausage casings, is flying (well, up 7 per cent at pixel) after Anonymous Analytics published a positive report on the stock on Wednesday.

Anonymous, which claims links to the shadowy hacker collective, says it is not actually a short seller. True enough. But it is still the first time a group best-known for putting out damning reports has published detailed research praising a company that has already come under attack from other short sellers.

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Want your own marquee at Camp Alphaville?

Serious opportunity this.

If you attended Camp Alphaville at the Honourable Artillery Company grounds last summer, you’ll know we had a lovely outside area with food vans, beer, frozen yoghurt, dancers, comedians and drones….

Well this year — on July 1, again at the HAC — we have lots more space. In fact we have up to half a cricket pitch of extra space. Read more

Video: FOMC analysis

Cardiff and Matt discuss Wednesday’s Fed action:

Macro Live, FOMC presser edition

Live markets commentary from 

FOMC statement for 18 March 2015

Some quick highlights, and don’t forget we’ve got Markets Live coming at 2:25pm ST:

– “Patient” has been removed, as expected. Read more

Man vs chimp, demographics edition

Some early morning preconception bashing courtesy of Hans Rosling, including the fact that “the number of children in the world has stopped increasing”:

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Bund cookies

In its implementation of the PSPP, the Eurosystem intends to conduct purchases in a gradual and broad-based manner, aiming to achieve market neutrality in order to avoid interfering with the market price formation mechanism…

‘Implementation aspects of the public sector purchase programme’, European Central Bank Read more

This is nuts (uh, you missed the crash)

Via TVLine:

Chase Crawford of Gossip Girl has been tapped to lead ABC’s Boom, in which one of the largest oil discoveries in American history leads to an economic explosion in a North Dakota town, our sister site Deadline reports. Read more

Is that a kleptocrat in your balance of payments?

This is a Russian bomber — no doubt with its transponder off, about to sneak into the airspace of some Nato country or other.

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Bring you joyful living and/or cents on the dollar

And so to the restructuring proposal sent to offshore bondholders this weekend by Kaisa — the Shenzhen property developer with frozen assets, a political purge problem, and a RMB 65bn ($10.3bn) pile of debt which has more than doubled in six months…

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