Thought for the weekend

Brace yourself, Peckham

Today in online urban culture dispatches Bloomberg flashes:


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Millions cheated by binary reporting scam

Like the movement of a currency in 30 seconds time, The Mail’s editorial stance on binary-option trading is impossible to predict. Read more

Thought for the weekend

In 1789 the French revolution signaled to Europe and the rest of the world that monarchy was on its way out and new democratic age was beginning. Now, with Online Public Offerings made possible thanks to the JOBS ACT, Washio can raise capital directly from the public. So why did they not do it ?

– from a Medium blog post by Howard Marks, executive chairman at StarEngine and co-founder at Activision/Blizzard.

Where does David Cameron go now?

“I’m a winner. I can win this,” the then British Prime Minister David Cameron told fellow European leaders last December. Read more

FirstFT – Clinton diagnosed with pneumonia, the increasing risk of turbulence and how your personality emerged

Disclosure comes after campaign aides had insisted that the chronic cough was nothing serious Read more

Thought for the weekend

In a sign of the style he was accustomed to as a wealthy investment banker, he deemed it “unacceptable” that a bartender at a Middle East hotel refilled his assistant’s cocktails with a shot of bourbon and left the “old orange peel and old ice” instead of supplying a fresh glass.

Globetrotting Obama official traveled in luxury. Taxpayers footed the bill.The Washington Post

FirstFT – Carney’s concerns, ritual humiliation in China and the most important minute of the day

BoE chief Mark Carney has left open the possibility of further cuts in UK interest rates Read more

FirstFT – Warnings over Bayer mega deal, the turning tide of globalisation and why you shouldn’t google medical symptoms

German group told it must raise takeover bid — despite concerns it is proposing too high a price Read more

Thought for the weekend

In one of the key speeches of his short Presidency, JFK in 1961 set an ambitious target: ‘I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to earth…we choose to go to the moon and do other things, not because they are easy but because they are hard.’ What challenge should we set for ourselves? As JFK was racing against the Soviets, we are racing against consequences of over leveraging and technological transition (all reflected in a new secular stagnation). One suggestion could be: ‘this world should commit itself to achieving the goal of colonizing Mars…we need to do it not because it is easy but because we have no choice as alternatives might be deglobalization, border closures, stagnation, communism, fascism, war or a combination thereof’.

It is not as crazy as it sounds. Whilst JFK was facing the unpalatable prospect of Soviets conquering space, we are facing unpalatable consequences of ‘fiat money’ and the structurally and socially unacceptable consequences of what we describe as the new ‘age of declining returns on humans’. Essentially, we are awashed in capital and liquidity and as a result face an inexorable decline in return on capital in almost every area of the economy whilst also having to adjust to the rapidly changing nature of labour markets. If we have a surplus of capital and people, the answer is to export both to another universe, and what is a better and more constructive way of doing it then to explore space?

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Thought for the weekend

Jennifer Aniston is one of the millions of Americans who experience symptoms consistent with Chronic Dry Eye. Commonly referred to as Dry Eye, Aniston has revealed how the condition gets in the way of her daily life. In partnership with Shire plc (LSE: SHP, NASDAQ: SHPG), Aniston is encouraging people to make eye health a priority, and is raising awareness and understanding about Chronic Dry Eye symptoms, like the ones she experiences. She hopes to educate and inspire people to chat with their eye doctor about what’s really going on with their eyes.

— Shire’s campaign to raise awareness of dry eyes.

Opening Quote: Final Premier Farnell offer

By Jonathan Guthrie

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Swiss electronics group Datwyler has signalled it will take its £615m bid for Premier Farnell, distributor of the Raspberry Pi, no higher. The company has defined its offer as “final”, which means shareholders can take it or leave it. They are likely to leave it, since US rival Avnet has bid £691m. Read more

FT Opening Quote: Admiral continuity, Cobham change and tax clampdown

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Admiral’s half year results are a terrible disappointment. It isn’t the numbers – group profit before tax is up 4 per cent to £193m – so much as the absence of bon mots from founder Henry Engelhardt, who stepped down as chief executive of the motor insurance group earlier this year. He likened prior results to “a snowball running like an express train” and his career to hot buttered toast.

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FT Opening Quote – RIT reduces equities exposure

By Jonathan Guthrie: Lord Rothschild is pulling in his horns. The veteran investor has reduced the equities exposure of RIT Capital Partners, his family’s £2.5bn London-quoted vehicle, from 55 to 44 per cent. He has cut sterling-denominated positions to 25 per cent and raised outlay on gold and precious metals to 8 per cent. Read more

An Alphapause

Yeah, it’s mid August. News flow is light. Izzy and Murphy are off (separately) for a week’s holiday; the rest of the team will be sorting through off-site stuff like email backlogs, catching up on reading material and doing some important contact development work. So expect a very light posting schedule from us. Normal service will be resumed on Monday, August 22. Read more

Thoughts for the weekend, and some links

A twofer this edition, as FT Alphaville is on a summer semi-holiday next week.

First: Read more

First FT – China warns UK over nuclear power deal, the global democratic recession and mankind’s greatest heritage site

Bilateral ties stand at a ‘crucial historical juncture’ over London’s deferral of an £18bn nuclear power project Read more

Thought for the weekend

I’m not going to job through everybody’s f***ing hoops. Bullsh*t from Maxwell that we’ve had to pay money to get bloody disproven because the code’s f***ing out there. I’m not doing this every f***ing time. I’m not going to sign every f***ing key I own in the world. I’ve got the first f***ing nine keys, I’ve got the f***ing genesis bloody block, I’ve got the f***ing code, I’ve got the f***ing papers. I’m not going to go through f***ing everything. I don’t really give a sh*t whether people like it.

– Craig Wright in an interview with GQ, released by the magazine this week. (via Ars Technica UK)

Markets Live is back at 11am

After a short, refreshing break, both Bryce and Murphy have made it back to FTAV HQ. So Markets Live resumes on Monday at 11am, as per usual. Never heard of ML? Click here. Read more

Thought(s) for the weekend

FinTech does not live at any specific location it lives at every mind and heart who is willing to make difference and has potential to take dream forward…

What is FinTech and where does it Live? (via Climateer InvestingRead more

Markets Live is on a one-week break

Bryce has fled north of the border; Murphy’s skulking at home in London. There’s no session of Markets Live today, or any day this week. Unless there’s a market emergency, of course. Normal service will be resumed on August 1. Read more

In knighthood news

Your lady here is sort of suggesting here I should remember about a board meeting in 20-whatever it was…

— (Sir) Philip Green, evidence to the parliamentary committee inquiry into the collapse of BHS, last month Read more

From Cardiff Garcia, locked-down earlier in Munich…

Quick audio vox pop here from Cardiff, who happened to in a restaurant near the site of the lone gunman attack on Friday night… Read more

Thought for the weekend

I do like the simplicity of the one product. We’ll probably expand in time, though. Maybe people would cook more if they could do things a little differently. Maybe, functionally, a new ingredient would allow that. People are still using eggs and milks and bread. When were those invented? People upgrade their iPhones every couple of years but we’re still eating the same foods that our ancestors did.

— Rob Rhinehart, inventor of Soylent meal-substitute gunk, enjoying Lunch with the FT

Thought for the weekend

Doo doo, doo doo. Right. Good.

– David Cameron reflecting (via a hot mic) on his resignation as Prime Minister Read more

There’s no Markets Live session on Friday

Bryce has taken a snap Summer Friday; Murphy’s deepening contact relationships in NW8. Normal service will resume on Monday. Read more

There’s a good reason to be a Long Room member…

It provides access to useful posts, like this one — a collection of timely reads on the financial consequences of Brexit.

Long Room membership is free, but access is restricted to finance professionals. In joining, you’ll be asked to fill out a little form and provide contact details. But don’t worry, we won’t spam you. Read more

Thought for the weekend

Wavelet transforms were invented for the purpose of analyzing time series data for which the mix of frequencies (power spectrum) may vary, and have come to be widely used in the fields of physics and engineering. One key application of wavelet analysis is identification of intra-cycle location, or distance to the next peak or trough. Applied to data for the USDJPY, this should provide us with some indication as to how long the yen might keep strengthening.

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FT Festival of Finance: The podcast preview

Monsoon conditions, interference and sheer content volume means we’re having to dedicate a bit more editing time to the podcast version of the FT Festival of Finance (AKA Camp Alphaville 2016) than anticipated. But it’s all in the name of bringing you as smooth a listening experience as possible.

The fully finessed beach bundle will be with you next week. In the meantime, however, here’s a sneak preview of the unedited Brexit-themed content (you know, before it goes entirely stale). Read more

If you voted for Brexit and like open-ended UK property funds, we have some bad news

From Standard Life Investments as it suspends trading in its £2.9bn UK real estate fund (one of the UK’s largest) because of post-referendum redemption requests:

Updating with actual press release:


Due to exceptional market circumstances, Standard Life Investments has taken the decision to suspend all trading in the Standard Life Investments UK Real Estate Fund (and its associated Feeder Funds) from 12:00 noon on 4July 2016.

The decision was taken following an increase in redemption requests as a result of uncertainty for the UK commercial real estate market following the EU referendum result. The suspension was requested to protect the interests of all investors in the fund and to avoid compromising investment returns from the range, mix and quality of assets within the portfolio.

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