Bitcoin’s crash not the end of cyber currencies – FT; Exchange Shuts Louis Dreyfus Warehouses; Brexit update

Nov 23, 2018

First Read

Hits & Takes
JLN Staff

The CME Group, which in November stands for “Chicago Mustache Exchange” has raised $78,415 for men’s health. Bryan Durkin is the biggest fundraiser with $20,272 raised so far. Support the CME team and men’s health.~JJL

The 2018 NFA Annual Review is now available.~JJL

Friday’s stock-trading session will be abbreviated, with New York Stock Exchange & Nasdaq due to close at 1 p.m. ET.~JJL

Want to learn more about EEX and EEXAsia? Download their new brochure for a full overview.~JJL

In the aftermath of Thanksgiving, consider this tidbit: cranberry farmers collectively agreed to destroy a quarter of their crop this year on the back of overwhelming supply. That linked article from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel goes into more detail and explains why the practice is allowed.~SD

There will be no JLN Options today, but there was quite a bit to cover in Wednesday’s, so here is a link to that. Just one preview of the content – the OCC said that it officially set a record for annual cleared contract volume with a month still to go in 2018.~SD


Predictive Analytics: Finding the Right Patterns

Can we predict the future? Or at least have a better conception of potential outcomes? PreData is on the case.

In this video, PreData CEO Hazem Dawani discusses how his firm approaches predictive analytics. (Hint: there’s a lot of data and machine learning involved.)

Watch the video and read the rest »


How Bitcoin’s Crash Compares to History’s Biggest Bubbles
Eric Lam, Mathieu Benhamou, and Adrian Leung – Bloomberg
Bitcoin’s latest plunge gives investors reason to weigh how it compares with some of history’s greatest asset bubbles. After an almost 60-fold increase in three years to nearly $20,000, the world’s biggest digital coin has now tumbled more than 75 percent from its peak, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. By comparison, the Nasdaq Composite Index posted a 78 percent peak-to-trough decline after the dot-com bubble burst in 2000.

***** The debate starts at, Is it a bubble? which is where all bubble debates start.~JJL


The TRADE’s Leaders in Trading 2018 winners announced; Over 250 industry leaders gathered at The Savoy Hotel in London to celebrate their achievements throughout the year.
John Brazier – The Trade
The TRADE is pleased to announce the winners of the Leaders in Trading Awards 2018, including the Algorithmic & EMS Trading, Editors’ Choice and Buy-Side awards.

***** Too many winners to list in JLN. Congrats to all.~JJL


Chinese Actress Vicki Zhao Banned From Securities Markets
Patrick Frater – Variety
Prominent Chinese actress Zhao Wei (aka Vicki Zhao) has been banned for five years from holding senior positions in any listed company in China. The ruling was made by the Shanghai Stock Exchange on Tuesday. The punishment relates to the failed 2016 takeover bid announced by Tibet Longwei, a company controlled by Zhao and her husband, Huang Youlong, for 29% of Zhejiang Wanija. The pair were found to have “disrupted market order” and to have benefited from a “celebrity effect” when they announced their bid, but did not have the financial resources to go through with it.

***** Sounds like she should be banned for bluffing.~JJL


Wednesday’s Top Three
Our top story of the day on Wednesday was Bloomberg’s Bitcoin Price Manipulated by Tether? Justice Department Probing. Second went to Bloomberg’s Founder of Stricken Hedge Fund Promoted Naked Option Selling. Third was JLN’s OptionSellers Goes Kaput; Bond Volatility


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Lead Stories

Bitcoin’s crash is not the end of cyber currencies; Banks and governments face a push to make money more digital
The Editorial Board – FT
Across cryptocurrency forums and blogs, the word of the month is “capitulation”. With bitcoin below $5,000 for the first time since October 2017, leading figures in the community have turned on each other in a spiral of finger pointing, while crypto-enthusiasts are at war with detractors who see this as a victory for fiat currencies. While this may not be the end for bitcoin and company, the crash underlines the question of whether it is worth trying to bring cryptocurrencies into the mainstream at all.

Exchange Shuts Louis Dreyfus Coffee Trading Warehouses; Intercontinental Exchange Inc. suspended three Louis Dreyfus-owned coffee warehouses in Europe for violating unspecified “grading” procedures
David Hodari – WSJ
Trouble is brewing for Louis Dreyfus’s coffee trading operations after Intercontinental Exchange Inc. suspended three company-owned storage facilities from a list of approved warehousekeepers.

U.K. and EU Agree Brexit Deal in a Draft That Hands Wins to May
Ian Wishart – Bloomberg
Draft sets out deep economic ties and cooperation on rules; May’s next challenge is to get it through hostile Parliament
The U.K. and the European Union have agreed to the final bit of their Brexit deal, setting out a vision for close economic ties in a draft that hands Prime Minister Theresa May some key political wins.

Are ‘the markets’ going to stop a hard Brexit?
Kate Allen – FT
The political commentariat is getting very excited about the idea that ‘the markets’ could ‘save us’ from a hard or chaotic Brexit. I wrote a few weeks ago in the FT about why that’s unlikely – but there’s one other vital flaw in the cunning plan worth mentioning.

Markets Are Revealing the Sum of All Risks; There’s not a main reason for the sell-off, but a widening sense of unease that several types of problems are rising at once.
Neil Irwin – NY Times
The most telling thing about the pummeling that the stock market has taken recently, and especially this week, is that there’s no simple single cause to point to. That reflects the fundamental economic risk for 2019 and beyond. There isn’t a lone caution on the horizon that can be identified and monitored and that policymakers can respond to.

Bob Diamond says financial companies ‘look cheap’; Ex-Barclays boss is completing purchase of 20% stake in Kepler Cheuvreux
Patrick Jenkins, Financial Editor- FT
Bob Diamond will step up the pace of niche financial services acquisitions as he builds an eclectic portfolio of investments for his Atlas Merchant Capital fund.

EU steps up preparations for euro clearing in ‘no deal’ Brexit
Huw Jones – Reuters
European Union regulators began on Friday to implement plans to ensure that trillions of euros in cross-border derivatives transactions would not be disrupted in the event of a “no deal” Brexit.
Britain and the EU are due on Sunday to endorse a divorce deal that includes a transition period from Brexit next March until the end of 2020, but it is unclear if there is enough support in Britain’s parliament to vote it through.

A Creator of the U.K.’s Libor Replacement Says It’s Still Too Complex
Emma Haslett – Bloomberg
As banks prepare to move away from the scandal-tainted London interbank offered rate, few in the city of London will be watching more closely than William Porter. Now head of European credit strategy at Credit Suisse Group AG, Porter was working on J.P. Morgan’s short-term interest rate and strategy team in the mid-1990s as it searched for a way to hedge short-term floating-rate risks against European currencies.

Former Goldman partner struggles to build crypto bank in bear market; Mike Novogratz has had ‘challenging’ year as price keeps falling
Hannah Murphy – FT
Mike Novogratz keeps crossing his fingers that this year’s bitcoin crash, which has seen the cryptocurrency lose three-quarters of its value and counting, is about to bottom out. The 53-year-old former Goldman Sachs partner and Fortress hedge fund manager is trying to create what he hopes will be the “Goldman Sachs of crypto”, a merchant bank that will entice institutional money into the uncharted territory of digital money.

Bank of France governor sets sight on clearing after Brexit
Philip Stafford and Jim Brunsden – FT
France’s central bank governor has warned that emergency rules to save the derivatives market from a no-deal Brexit must not last more than one year, as he urged Brussels to speed up work on rules that could force more of the industry to move to the continent.

Big banks are moving regulators out of New York City
Kevin Dugan – NY Post
Wall Street doesn’t mind hiring compliance officers ó it just wants them a few thousand miles away. New York City has seen an exodus of banks’ back-office workers this year ó and can expect to see even more shedding in 2019 ó as weaker regulatory oversight has encouraged big deals and boosted profits to all-time highs.

Exchanges, OTC and Clearing

Aquis Exchange deploys Itiviti’s trading systems testing technology; Aquis Exchange has implemented VeriFIX from Itiviti for testing its trading systems.
Hayley McDowell – The Trade
Pan-European cash equities trading venue Aquis Exchange has implemented an integrated platform for testing of its trading systems from Itiviti.

Shanghai-HK Stock Connect Starts 4th Year With Steady Operation, Total Turnover Of Over RMB10 Tn
As an institutional innovation in the opening up of China’s capital market, Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect ushered in its fourth “birthday” on November 17, 2018. In the past four years, the Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect system has been continuously optimized and improved on the basis of smooth operation, and has continued to promote the integration of the markets in China’s mainland and Hong Kong and enhance the two-way opening of the domestic capital market.

TASE Seeks To Significantly Reduce Vetting Fees For New Listings Among Other Things, TASE Seeks To Abolish Vetting Fees For Shelf Prospectus And Lower Vetting Fees For ESOPs
On 21.10.18, the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE) released a proposal to introduce a series of changes to its vetting fees for new listings. The Israeli Association of Publicly Traded Companies petitioned TASE to lower the listing costs for newly – listed companies to encourage new listings and to lower costs for companies already trading on TASE. The proposed changes are the result of an on-going dialogue between TASE and the Association to improve services provided TASE-listed companies.

SGX named “Exchange of the Year” in Energy Risk Asia Awards for third consecutive year
Singapore Exchange (SGX) has been named “Exchange of the Year” in the Energy Risk Asia Awards for a third consecutive year.
The Energy Risk Asia Awards recognise excellence across Asian commodities markets. SGX accelerated its push to complete the “virtual steel mill” value chain, harnessing its leadership in the iron ore market to combine capital efficiencies across coking coal and freight derivatives.

ELITE surpasses 1000 company milestone: 19 new businesses join today
London Stock Exchange Group
London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG) today welcomes a further 19 companies to ELITE, its innovative international business support and capital raising programme, bringing the total number of companies in the ELITE ecosystem to over 1000.

Moscow Exchange Signs MoU With China International Capital Corporation
On 22 November 2018, Moscow Exchange signed a Memorandum of Understanding with China International Capital Corporation (CICC), one of the largest investment banks in China. The agreement aims to strengthen cooperation between Russia and China to promote investment and develop the offshore Chinese yuan market in Russia.


SoftBank, Mizuho Tap Into Stock-Trading App to Sell Massive IPO
Takahiko Hyuga – Bloomberg
The 2.4 trillion yen ($21 billion) initial public offering of SoftBank Group Corp.’s phone unit is aimed at attracting retail investors to maximize its value. No surprise then, that the technology company and underwriter Mizuho Securities Co. are turning to a smartphone-based brokerage to sell shares.

Refinitiv CEO readies for data tussle with Bloomberg
Samuel Agini – Financial News
High-flying traders dominate the financial markets. But although the biggest leveraged buyout since the financial crisis took place in their sector, it was not their talent the buyers were willing to stump up $17bn for. It was the data under their floorboards and on their screens.

SS&C completes $1.5 billion takeover of Intralinks; The completion of the takeover provides SS&C one of the most-used communications platforms used by private equity and hedge fund managers.
Joe Parsons – The Trade
SS&C Technologies has completed the $1.5 billion acquisition of financial technology provider Intralinks, giving it one of the most-used investor communication platforms by alternatives investment managers. Intralinks facilitates strategic initiatives including mergers and acquisitions, capital raising and investor reporting.

InstaReM Raises $20 Million in Series C Funding
David Kimberley – Finance Magnates
Payments firm InstaReM announced the first close of its $45 million series C funding round as over $20 million. The financial technology (fintech) company claims that its current funding round is one of the largest in South-East Asian history.

UK challenger bank Monzo to launch business current account
Antony Peyton – Banking Tech
Following in the wake of Starling and RBS’s digital entity Mettle, UK challenger bank Monzo plans to unveil a business current account. The bank will apply for some funding and if “successful” that money will give it the resources needed to make business banking a priority, and “hopefully launch something in the next year or two”. This funding comes from the £700 million pot of money called the Alternative Remedies Package. Banks and fintechs can apply for some of the money, and use it to build or expand their own products for SMEs.

Fintech MyBucks brings banking to African refugee camp
Penny Crosman – American Banker
At a refugee camp in Malawi in southeast Africa, a fintech and its bank subsidiary are helping to turn a seemingly hopeless situation into the beginnings of a prosperous community. MyBucks has set up a branch of its New Finance Bank subsidiary in the camp, which is said to be the first of its kind. The bank provides mobile banking, financial literacy training, professional training, group loans and personal loans. It opened in April and it’s already profitable.


Coinbase Loses Chief Policy Officer Michael Lempres
Julie Verhage – Bloomberg
Coinbase Inc., one of the largest U.S. crypto exchanges, is losing its policy head at a time when communication between Washington and the digital money sector may never be more important.

Bitcoin Mining Firm Giga Watt Declares Bankruptcy Owing Millions
Yogita Khatri – CoinDesk
U.S.-based bitcoin mining firm Giga Watt has declared bankruptcy with millions still owed to creditors.
The firm filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy at a court in the Eastern District of Washington on Monday, revealing that it still owes its biggest 20 unsecured creditors nearly $7 million in court documents seen by CoinDesk.

A Tale of Two Selloffs
David Weisberger, CoinRoutes – Medium
Over the past week, we have endured not one, but two brutal selloffs in crypto assets, causing depression among the crypto community and schadenfreude among its many critics. These moves were quite different from each other however, despite being of similar magnitudes with the same elevated trading volumes.

Mt Gox Trustee Seeks to Extend Civil Rehabilitation Claims Deadline
Yogita Khatri – Coindesk
Nobuaki Kobayashi, the trustee of the collapsed bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox, is seeking to extend the deadline for filing civil rehabilitation claims to December.

Pressure builds on regulators over cryptocurrency irregularities
Don Weinland, Emma Dunkley, and Federica Cocco – Financial Times
Pressure is building on regulators to increase their oversight of cryptocurrencies following a $15bn crash in bitcoin and irregularities at one of the world’s largest virtual trading platforms. Cryptocurrencies suffered another battering in the markets on Tuesday. Bitcoin, the most actively traded digital currency, fell more than 10 per cent to a low of $4,237, its weakest level since October 2017, according to Refinitiv.

Overstock’s Founder Bets on Blockchain, Not Bedsheets
Paul Vigna – The Wall Street Journal
In August 2015, Inc. Chief Executive Patrick Byrne rented out Nasdaq Inc.’s Times Square broadcast studio for a lavish party to unveil his newest project, a blockchain-based trading system called tZero. Three years later, tZero still hasn’t launched commercially, and it is burning through millions of dollars a month. Yet Mr. Byrne is staking his company’s future on it and more than a dozen other blockchain startups.

Blockchain smart contracts are finally good for something in the real world
Mike Orcutt – MIT Technology Review
You have probably heard that blockchain technology and “smart contracts” are going to revolutionize our lives. But there’s a problem: before smart contracts can do anything really useful, they need a reliable way to connect with events in the real worldóand that has proved impossible so far. This is the so-called “oracle problem,” a technological challenge that is still hampering any chance that blockchain will break out and become a part of our everyday lives.

NSD, Sberbank, And MTS Complete The Commercial Bond Transaction Based On Blockchain
National Settlement Depository (NSD), Russia’s central securities depository, Sberbank, Russia’s largest bank, and MTS, Russia’s leading telecommunications operator, have summed up the results of commercial bond placement using blockchain.

Riot Blockchain SEC investigation is ‘still ongoing’
Jennifer Schlesinger, Scott Zamost, Hannah Kliot, and Ritika Shah – CNBC
Riot Blockchain, the cryptocurrency company whose stock skyrocketed after changing its name, revealed that the Securities and Exchange Commission subpoena and investigation are “still ongoing,” according to its most recent quarterly filing. The company had previously disclosed that the subpoena received on April 9 was “pursuant to a formal order of investigation,” according to its May quarterly filing.

North Korea blockchain conference mixes crypto with tourism
Luke Thompson – Asia Times
In a first for the reclusive nation, North Korea will open its doors to international industry experts for a blockchain and crypto-currency conference it plans to hold next year.


Roberts raps Trump for ‘Obama judge’ comment
Mark Sherman – Associated Press
Chief Justice John Roberts is pushing back against President Donald Trump for his description of a judge who ruled against Trump’s migrant asylum policy as an “Obama judge.”
It’s the first time the Republican-appointed leader of the federal judiciary has offered even a hint of criticism of Trump, who has previously blasted federal judges who ruled against him.

Washington Asks Allies to Drop Huawei; U.S. worried about potential Chinese meddling in 5G networks, but foreign carriers may balk
Stu Woo and Kate O’Keeffe – WSJ
The U.S. government has initiated an extraordinary outreach campaign to foreign allies, trying to persuade wireless and internet providers in these countries to avoid telecommunications equipment from China’s Huawei Technologies Co., according to people familiar with the situation.

Markets turn a deaf ear to the Bank of England; They assume Mark Carney’s words have as much weight as a smoker promising to quit tomorrow
Chris Giles – FT
These are strange times at the Bank of England. In its 324-year history, there can be few other moments when it has simultaneously been fully trusted and derided by financial markets on the same issue ó a no-deal Brexit. The situation is difficult for central bank officials to compute and potentially worse for Theresa May as she tries to steer her Brexit proposals through parliament.

Trump ramps up pressure on Saudi Arabia to lower oil prices; Call to raise output coincides with rising concerns among producers about oversupply
Anjli Raval, Senior Energy Correspondent – FT
US president Donald Trump praised Saudi Arabia for helping to reduce oil prices and ramped up pressure on the kingdom to maintain the decline, even as talks have gathered pace among producer nations to enact new production curbs.

China says WTO faces ‘profound crisis’, urges reform
Yawen Chen, Joseph Campbell – Reuters
China on Friday urged the World Trade Organization (WTO) to close loopholes and correct practices by some member states that damage global trade, warning of a “profound crisis” facing the institution’s existence.


FIA, ISDA, GFMA and EMTA joint briefing on the need to extend the transition period of the Benchmark Regulation (PDF)
FIA, together with ISDA, GFMA and EMTA, published a briefing today requesting EU policymakers to extend the transition period of the Benchmarks Regulation for critical and non-critical benchmarks due to significant negative implications for financial stability in European and global financial markets and competitive disadvantages for European companies.

FCA launches further consultations ahead of the UK’s exit from the EU
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) today published a further consultation on its approach to the UK’s exit from the EU. Today’s paper sets out additional proposals to prepare for the possibility the UK leaves the European Union on 29 March 2019 without an implementation period.

ESMA welcomes no-deal Brexit central clearing equivalence plans; The European Commission has said it will adopt temporary equivalence to ensure no disruption to central clearing in the case of no-deal Brexit.
Hayley McDowell – The Trade
The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has welcomed a recent communication from the European Commission which outlines plans for central clearing in the case of a no-deal Brexit scenario.

Managing risks of a no-deal Brexit in the area of central clearing
The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) is publishing this Public Statement to address the risks of a no-deal Brexit scenario in the area of central clearing. The ESMA Board of Supervisors supports the continued access to UK CCPs to limit the risk of disruption in central clearing and to avoid negatively impacting EU financial market stability.

KISS leads to a final uncleared swap margin rule
Brad Rosen – Wolters Kluwer
The CFTC has approved a final rule to amend its uncleared swap margin requirements (CFTC Margin Rule) to clarify that master netting agreements are not excluded from the definition of “eligible master netting agreement,” thereby harmonizing CFTC requirements with those of other regulatory bodies as well as providing further regulatory certainty to market participants.

New York regulator to end supervision of Standard Chartered for compliance failings
New York’s Department of Financial Services (DFS) will end a period of monitoring of Standard Chartered (STAN.L) on Dec. 31, the DFS said on Wednesday, bringing to a close one strand of the bank’s punishment for past failings in compliance controls.

CAT Reporting Requirements Presentation Schedule And Registration Information
The CAT NMS, LLC Operating Committee is hosting in-person presentations on options reporting requirements for the Consolidated Audit Trail. During these presentations, the SROs and Thesys CAT LLC will provide information on the reporting of options orders in accordance with the CAT Reporting Technical Specifications for Industry Members; including detailed discussions of reporting scenarios, implementation timelines and registration.

Ontario Securities Commission Broadens Investor Education To New Canadians During Financial Literacy Month
The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) today published a suite of new multilingual resources for Financial Literacy Month. These new resources are part of the OSC’s priority of reaching and educating newcomers about investing in Canada.

Investing and Trading

Yards After Contact
Josh Brown – The Reformed Broker
…Yards After Contact is the game right now. Are you built for it?

****Heads up – Brown doesn’t mince his words when it comes to some of these topics, including the OptionSellers blowup.~SD

Stock market volatility: Options traders expect more, more, more
Saqib Iqbal Ahmed – Reuters
A new normal is taking root in U.S. stock markets, and the word that best sums it up starts with a “V”.

Investment trusts given fortnight to object to ‘toxic’ new rules; Industry angered by European regulators’ move to delay use of key documents
Kate Beioley – FT
The investment trust industry has just two weeks to respond to a proposed overhaul of rules on risk and performance documentation after intervention by European regulators.

Don’t Write Off the Research Boutique Yet; But not all research boutiques can bank on finding a buyer like AllianceBernstein.
Chris Hughes – Bloomberg
If some of the most august independent analysts in the business feel their future lies inside a large U.S. broker, does any research boutique have a future? There is still hope.

Nobel Laureate Daniel Kahneman on the ‘most costly mistake of investors’
Emily McCormick -Yahoo Finance
When it comes to leaders, individuals are most drawn to those who exude optimism and confidence. But some of the most desired traits of visionaries are also those that are most likely to lead to failure, according to Daniel Kahneman, co-recipient of the 2002 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics and professor emeritus of psychology and public affairs at Princeton University.


AllianceBernstein makes offer to acquire Autonomous Research
Hayley McDowell – The Trade
US-based investment management and broker AllianceBernstein has confirmed that it has made an offer to acquire institutional research provider Autonomous Research.

Exclusive: ASIC Broker License Hits Whopping $4m
Victor Golovtchenko – Finance Magnates
If you were thinking about obtaining an Australian license to provide high leverage trading to your clients, we have some bad news. The prices of companies regulated in Australia and permitted to offer CFD brokerage services have skyrocketed in recent months.

Goldman Sachs sued by Abu Dhabi fund over 1MDB; Lawsuit claims ‘massive global conspiracy’ as fallout from scandal grows
Laura Noonan and Simeon Kerr – FT
An Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund has sued Goldman Sachs over the 1Malaysia Development Berhad scandal, accusing the US bank of bribing its officials during a “massive global conspiracy”.

Goldman Chairman Met Privately With Fugitive Accused in Malaysian Fraud
Emily Flitter, Matthew Goldstein and Kate Kelly – NY Times
One day in December 2012, a young Malaysian V.I.P. entered the gleaming headquarters of Goldman Sachs in Lower Manhattan. The man, Jho Low, a financier with close ties to Malaysia’s prime minister at the time, was there for a private meeting with one of the most powerful people on Wall Street: Goldman’s longtime chairman and chief executive, Lloyd C. Blankfein.

Hedge funds reap windfalls from market rout; Crispin Odey’s bets on falling stocks helped his fund gain 7% last month
Laurence Fletcher and Lindsay Fortado – FT
The stock market correction of the past two months has been painful for many investors, but a small group of bearish hedge fund managers believe their time has arrived.

CMC Markets H1 profit slumps as regulation, low volatility bite
CMC Markets Plc reported a 76 percent slide in first-half pretax profit, hurt by curbs on client trading as London’s online trading firms face scrutiny from global regulators and sustained low market volatility.


Macquarie cruises through misconduct inquiry into Australia’s financial sector
Paulina Duran – Reuters
The CEO of Macquarie Group Ltd glided through an appearance at an inquiry into misconduct in Australia’s financial sector on Thursday, as the country’s largest investment bank has not been the subject of any allegations.

Palm oil was meant to help save the planet, but has unleashed an environmental catastrophe instead; US laws designed to reduce fossil fuel dependence have created an environmental catastrophe in Indonesia where deforestation for oil-palm cultivation is releasing massive levels of carbon
Abrahm Lustgarten – Independent
The fields outside Kotawaringin village in Central Kalimantan, on the island of Borneo, looked as if they had just been cleared by armies. None of the old growth remained ó only charred stumps poking up from murky, dark pools of water.

Brazil’s Economy Under Bolsonaro
Andrew Chatzky
Brazilian President-Elect Jair Bolsonaro, dubbed the “Trump of the tropics,” is a far-right populist who has praised Brazil’s former military dictatorship, insulted women, and threatened to jail political opponents. He also has big plans for reviving the country’s moribund economy that could raise tensions with Brazil’s biggest trade partner, China.

This is why 20-something bankers fail in Singapore and Hong Kong
Simon Mortlock –
Junior banking professionals in Singapore and Hong Kong are still in comparatively strong demand as banks like Standard Chartered trim senior staff. But if you’re an analyst or associate in Asia, the interview process for getting a new job at a global bank is still highly competitive.


EU struggles to agree on Gibraltar before Brexit summit
Gabriela Baczynska – Reuters
European Union negotiators met on Friday to try to clear the last hurdle before Sunday’s summit to endorse the Brexit deal, but Spain’s eleventh-hour objection over Gibraltar means the final text could not be ready until the last minute.

The Brexit road to Britain’s collapse;The gradual journey to withdrawal has become a sudden leap for clarity and conclusion
Philip Stephens – FT
How did you go bankrupt, asks a character in the Hemingway novel The Sun Also Rises. Two ways, comes the reply: “Gradually, and then suddenly.” Gradually and suddenly is the story of Brexit. The 2016 vote to quit the EU has drained Britain of energy, purpose and international influence. It happened gradually. Many people have not noticed. Now, suddenly, the end is in view. It may well turn out to be something worse than bankruptcy.

Spanish PM renews veto threat against draft Brexit deal; Late EU stumbling block comes as May comes under pressure to make compromises
Jim Brunsden and Hudson Lockett – FT
Spanish prime minister Pedro S·nchez has warned that he is ready to torpedo a draft Brexit agreement between the UK and EU over concerns about the future status of Gibraltar, denying suggestions from Theresa May that progress has been made in overcoming the impasse.

UK fintechs claim Brexit could lead to a “lost generation” of London businesses
Callum Burroughs – Business Insider
One of the UK’s fasting growing and most exciting industries, fintech, is thriving despite Brexit fears weighing heavily on the dynamic sector. Business Insider spoke to 10 UK fintech leaders to get a better perspective on the impact Brexit is having on the industry. British fintechs claim to have made the best of continued uncertainty about the UK’s future relationship with the EU, but warn that talent and investment will leave the country is clarity isn’t forthcoming.

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