Business Education

Sittin’ On The Dock Of The Bay.

Yeah so, as Heisenberg readers know, I do a fair amount of my midday pontificating/bullshitting from various spots on the island where I reside, and while there’s decent WiFi by the pier (the site of the aerobics classes I mentioned a couple of weeks ago in a piece about Italian credit) and also by this quaint little oyster bar that I am not at all sure has proper refrigeration units, I try to make it back to the old bungalow in time to do my U.S. market wrap. Unfortunately I didn’t make it back today, so this coming to you live from an actual dock (Otis Redding style) and you can attribute any errors to a bad connection and/or to various distractions (as Sam Zell would say, “pussy on the block“). I really did think this was going to be a lackluster, uneventful session and indeed it was ri...

Susquehanna Is The Mark Zuckerberg Of The Winklevii’s Bitcoin Play

(Getty Images) Remember the Winklevii’s not-so-short-lived plans for a bitcoin ETF? We don’t, either. But the two were serious enough about the doomed enterprise to engage Susquehanna International Group to help out with the endeavor, in much the same way they once asked Mark Zuckerberg to help them out with a little coding. And like Zuckerberg before it, Susquehanna has turned that request for help into a potentially profitable little business line. Susquehanna International Group in Bala Cynwyd, Pa., just outside Philadelphia, is one of the largest players in trading traditional investments like stocks, options and exchange traded funds, or E.T.F.s. Over the last two years, the privately owned company has also built up a trading desk of around a dozen people that buys and sells millions ...

Deutsche Bank Wondering Aloud If Anyone Wants To Buy A Totally Healthy Not-At-All Broken German Bank

Yesterday, Deutsche Bank’s CFO went out in public and apparently tried to convince a room of people that his bank not in the throes of a full-blown crisis… [James] Von Moltke assured attendees at the conference that the bank as a whole is “fundamentally sound”, pointing to its talented employees, the depth of its client relationships and the strength of Deutsche Bank’s balance sheet. Well, we don’t want to say that von Moltke is gilding the lily with all that conceited “fundamentally sound” braggadocio, but it is hard to take him too seriously when we already know that Deutsche is firing any talent that isn’t actively quitting or hiding in a barren supplies closet, and that the current depth of its client relationships are shallower than Kardashian marriages [but with less concealed enmity...

The Next Recession Will Be A Disaster Of Our Own Design

By John (Flickr: Panic button) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons President Trump is right—the economy is in better shape today than it’s been in decades. But he should watch how he gloats, because we’re only enjoying the calm before the storm. There are now more job openings in American than unemployed folks, and while secular forces are keeping a lid on wage increases, there are signs that the economy is overheating and may quickly tip into the sort of imbalance that signals an imminent correction and recession. Economists are notoriously bad at predicting a recession, but we know one is in our future, and a growing chorus of voices says it will arrive within the next two years. Two-thirds of economists surveyed by the National Association of Business Economists say there will be a re...

At G-7 Meeting, World Leaders To Ponder Most Effective Way To Extract Agitated Man-Child From Control Booth

US trade policy is a conundrum. That’s from a Goldman note out last weekend and it serves as an amusingly deadpan reminder of just how utterly confused the rest of the world is when it comes to what Donald Trump’s vision is for the future of international commerce. And you know what? Just take a minute to let that sink in. In the surreal reality that is 2018, Donald Trump’s opinion on the future of international commerce not only matters, but is in fact the controlling factor when it comes to the near-term outlook for global trade. Imagine doing some kind of game theoretic experiment where the outcomes are related to geopolitics and where one of the players is a chimpanzee (you know, just to see what would happen). That’s what we were all accustomed to prior to 2017. Trump would do impromp...

Leon Cooperman Won’t Tell The President What To Do But Sure Hopes Someone Else Does

There once was a time that Leon Cooperman had the president’s ear. Specifically, that time he had dinner with him, and the president asked him whether he thought Amazon was a monopoly. Twice. Both times, Cooperman gave the wrong answer, because he took the question at face value and failed to understand that, to Donald Trump, words like “monopoly” have no meaning except as potential weapons against perceived enemies, and therefore that saying Amazon is a monopoly does not mean that it has exclusive control over a particular commodity or service, but that it is a bad company run by someone who does not like Donald Trump and is thus a monopoly because calling it one might allow Donald Trump to destroy it. Because Leon Cooperman does not provide the answers Donald Trump wants to hear, and als...

Jamie Dimon Lazily Attempts To Bat Away His Destiny On Live Television

During an appearance on CNBC’s Squawk Box this morning, Jamie Dimon and Warren Buffett announced that they’d found the perfect masochist to work for them and Jeff Bezos on their new health care initiative, professed the American economy to be booming and called for an end to the market’s obsession with quarterly earnings reports [killjoys]. But the only real newsworthy moment of the interview came when Becky Quick asked the question on the mind of every true American patriot: Will Jamie Dimon admit that he must give in to divine providence and run for president? Here’s the video: Jamie Dimon says “I have no intention of running for president,” Buffett adds that he isn’t going to run for vice president either. pic.twitter.com/ayzgDgC31g — CNBC Now (@CNBCnow) June 7, 2018 Even President-Elec...

Opening Bell 6.7.18

Putin tells Europe on U.S. trade threat: ‘I told you so’ [Reuters] “That is exactly what is happening now. Nobody wanted to listen, and nobody did anything to stop this from developing. Well, there you go, you’ve been hit. Dinner is served … please sit down and eat.” Putin also accused the United States of upsetting the strategic nuclear balance, and said nobody should take any hasty steps: “The understanding that a third world war could be the end of civilization should restrain us.” U.S. Trade Is Trump’s Main Focus at G-7 Gathering [WSJ] For decades, the G-7 summit has been a venue for the richest countries to coordinate policies around trade and shared values, and the U.S. was the group’s undisputed leader. Now, many observers believe the Trump administration seems less interested in ma...

Sam Zell Has Never Been Concerned About Getting “More Pussy on The Block” Because Sam Zell Is A Feminist Or Whatever

The #MeToo movement has come for so many old familiar names that we almost forget to remember who it hasn’t come for, until it does. Sam Zell knows what we’re talking about: Real estate investor Sam Zell, asked at a conference Wednesday about gender diversity and the #MeToo movement, said he has promoted women based on merit. Oh? Well, that’s nice… “I never promoted a woman because she was a woman. I never demoted a woman because she was a woman. My issue is what do you do, what do you produce, how do you interrelate to the rest of the business,” Zell, chairman of Equity Group Investments Inc., said at the REITweek investor conference in Manhattan. That’s right, you toxic masculines, everyone’s favorite Keebler Elf turned real estate billionaire is a woke-ass bro! He doesn’t see gender, ju...

Bill Ackman Needs To Talk To A CFA

Hey, not everything Bill Ackman touches turns to shit. He had that solid little Nike bet a few months back, and Chipotle is on the rebound. Heck, there was even all that upside joy he found in the frozen fish aisle last year. But it turns out that Bill’s personal investment portfolio also has a few winners. From Bloomberg: The hedge fund manager personally holds a majority stake in Rittenhouse Hill, a luxury apartment complex that’s one of the largest in Philadelphia, according to a May regulatory filing that first disclosed his ownership. The property, with about 625 units, has jumped in appraised value since he teamed up with the Pestronk brothers to buy it in 2011. “Bill Ackman: Real Estate Investor.” We like the sound of that. But is he really any good at this or are we looking at anot...

Man Who Owns .0000071% of Tesla Attempts to Unseat Elon Musk

On Monday, woes again plagued Elon Musk, and they included the Tesla shareholders meeting that was to take place the following day. With that meeting came worries that investors planned to strip Musk of some power within the corporation and shake up his board a bit…literally. Two proposals were voted on at the meeting. One to change the makeup of Tesla’s board: Shareholders also struck down a second proposal to remove three Tesla board members up for re-election this year. The proposal was brought by the CtW Investment Group, which works with pension funds for unions. And another proposal to form an independent chairman: Shareholder Jiang Zhao of Concord, California, who owns 12 shares of Tesla stock, brought the proposal to have an independent chairman forward because he said it was neces...

Can You Blame Algos For Oil’s Recent Losses? Sure You Can!

On Tuesday, WTI managed to shake off confirmation of overt U.S. efforts to stem the rise in crude prices and there’s a vociferous debate going on about whether and to what extent Saudi efforts to put the brakes on the rally in oil will be successful or otherwise warrant a bearish outlook. For the time being, all anyone knows for sure is that calls for $100 crude aren’t likely to be borne out any time soon. Coming into this week, WTI was nursing its second weekly decline and while some folks will invariably be predisposed to fading weakness for some of the reasons Goldman mentioned in the note highlighted in the third linked post above, trading against Al-Falih in the near-term is a damn suicide mission for obvious reasons. Well with that as the backdrop, Nomura is out with a new piece that...