Finance

Coincheck Didn’t Bother With ‘Basic Security Protocols’ Because The Worst That Could Happen Is A $400 Million Theft

It was exactly the kind of scene that Japan’s FSA had been hoping to avoid when it became one of the few regulators globally to introduce a licensing system for cryptocurrency exchanges last April. That’s from a new Bloomberg piece documenting the fallout from last week’s rather unfortunate episode that found one of Japan’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges admitting it had “lost” some $400 million in “NEM coins”. The “scene” Bloomberg is describing apparently involved furious Japanese customers huddled together in the freezing cold outside the exchange’s headquarters which, hilariously, is only “an eight-minute walk from the site where Mt. Gox imploded” four years ago. We mercilessly lampooned this boondoggle on Friday and one of the points we made was that anyone who is angry should direc...

UBS, Deutsche Bank and HSBC to pay millions in spoofing settlement, CFTC says

Until now, an illegal trading technique called “spoofing” has been associated with two-bit commodities outfits and lone wolf traders operating in the shadows of the markets. But prosecutors revealed on Monday that their investigations have hit the big time. Deutsche Bank, UBS and HSBC will collectively pay nearly $47 million to settle civil regulatory charges some of their traders engaged in spoofing in precious metals. Deutsche Bank will pay $30 million and UBS $15 million of that total in a wide-reaching investigation by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission that also names six individuals. HSBC will pay $1.6 million. All three banks cooperated with the investigation. In addition, the Justice Department said Monday it has charged eight individuals with crimes related to de...

Gabelli says merger activity makes him optimistic about the market over the next six to nine months

Mario Gabelli says the animal spirits in the markets, awakened by tax reform and strong corporate profits, are creating a new wave of merger activity and opportunities for investors. The CEO of Gabelli Asset Management said Monday on CNBC’s “Halftime Report” that there will be a surge of merger activity as companies look to put their excess cash to work. Already on Monday, CNBC has reported a possible deal where Dell Technologies would do a reverse merger with VMware, the cloud computing company. Keurig Green Mountain also announced plans to purchase Dr Pepper Snapple, and Sanofi said it would buy Ablynx. Gabelli says he’s a buyer of General Electric shares after their recent pullback, based on its industrial business. GE shares are up 1.5 percent on Monday. He said...

Avon shareholders urge cosmetic maker to sell itself

Shareholders of Avon Products on Monday called on the cosmetics maker to explore strategic options, including a sale. The shareholders, which include lead investors Shah Capital, Barington Capital Group and NuOrion Partners, together hold a 3.5 percent stake in the company. The group said they were “extremely disappointed” with the board’s inability to address falling shareholder value and to hire a new chief executive quickly. “The board values the input of all shareholders and is executing against its roadmap to deliver profitable growth”, an Avon spokeswoman said, adding the company is on track to complete its CEO transition on schedule. In August, Avon’s CEO Sheri McCoy said she would step down in March 2018 after activist investor Barington pressure...

Brian Moynihan Poaches John Cryan’s Connection To SoftBank In Vicious Demonstration Of Sad-On-Sad Violence

Things are getting so existentially painful for John Cryan that he is now beset by dreams of staring into Brian Moynihan’s world-weary, angst-scarred face, witnessing the odd miracle of a smirk appearing and hearing what passes for a Moynihanian giggle before his fellow bank CEO and human punching bank murmurs “Even I got one over on you John…” Stephen Pitts, a senior Deutsche Bank AG banker with close ties to tech giant SoftBank Group Corp., is joining Bank of America Corp., according to the banks.Mr. Pitts, a 17-year Deutsche Bank veteran and managing director, is a senior leveraged-loan banker with a long history structuring deals for telecommunications companies. He has been a key banker in the lender’s relationship with SoftBank, which last year launched a nearly $100 billion technolo...

A Treasury Secretary Walks Into A Bar Full Of Central Bankers…

One of the peculiarities of the prevailing market environment is that when political shocks become predictable (e.g. when the news cycle becomes so manic that everyone accepts it as likely that what was “news” on Friday, won’t be “news” on Monday thanks to some new “bombshell” which will almost invariably come calling), ostensibly destabilizing events lose their ability to destabilize due to the rapidity with which they occur. “#Shitholegate” only matters until we find out that Trump tried to fire Robert Mueller. And that only matters until we find out that Trump wants Rod Rosenstein gone. And on, and on. Ultimately, this results in gridlock. It’s a rolling political crisis. At best, it means legislation will be an uphill battle and will proceed only at a snail’s pace. At worst, it means p...

The Fed will cause a stock market correction this quarter, investment bank Stifel predicts

Stocks will experience a correction this quarter as the Federal Reserve leads other central banks in tightening global monetary policy, a strategist at Stifel predicts. “With late cycle U.S. tax cuts occurring after GDP has recovered, the Fed must tighten to offset loose fiscal policy,” Barry Bannister, the firm’s head of institutional equity strategy, said in a note Friday. He also said other central banks will follow the Fed’s lead. “Although it is fashionable to believe in Davos-man cooperation, the Fed is the pace setter for all the world’s central banks,” Bannister said. “The U.S. was first-in/first-out of the Global Financial Crisis, … and the Fed will be the first central bank to shed politicized rescue efforts and lead other central b...

Goldman, these other Dow stocks may win if rates keep shooting higher

The jump in the 10-year Treasury yield to its highest in more than three years signals gains for big banks and technology stocks, history shows. Using quantitative analysis tool Kensho, CNBC looked at the performance of Dow Jones industrial average components when 10-year bond prices fall and yields surge. Just four weeks into the new year, the 10-year price has already fallen more than 2 percent. The yield climbed to a high of 2.727 percent Monday morning, its highest since April 29, 2014, as traders bet on greater economic growth and elevated inflation. Markets expect the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates at least two times this year. If that yield keeps rising to 3 percent in the next three months, history shows it should be good for bank stocks like Goldman Sachs and J.P. Morgan ...

Dell is considering a sale to VMware in what may be tech’s biggest deal ever

Dell Technologies could emerge as a public company through a reverse-merger with VMware, the $60 billion cloud computing company it already controls, according to people familiar with the matter. The reverse merger, whereby VMware would actually buy the larger Dell, would then allow Dell to be traded publicly without going through a formal listing. It would also likely be the biggest deal in tech industry history, giving investors who backed Dell’s move to go private in 2013 a way to monetize their deal, while helping Dell pay down some of its approximately $50 billion debt. VMware’s stock fell sharply on the news. At midday, it was down 8.5 percent. While Dell may also pursue a more traditional initial public offering, said the people, a reverse merger would allow the company ...

Chinese investors keep losing billions online. Here’s why.

The company’s name appeared in ads for the local marathon. Its logo was emblazoned on the jerseys of two professional soccer teams in Spain. Its founder had been lauded by the government’s official television channel. To investors, it seemed like a safe bet. For years, it was. Then some of them tried to take their money out. Now as much as $5 billion is missing, the head of the company is in jail and in one city, angry investors took to the streets. Online investing in China isn’t for the vulnerable or the naïve — but frequently, that’s exactly who it draws. The flameout last week of the popular online investment portal Qianbao is the latest in a string of collapses that has devastated small investors and prompted Beijing to take steps to tamp down on potential unre...

Local Bar Owners Allegedly Defrauding I-Banking Clients On The Side

(The Sloppy Tuna) Drew Doscher is not afraid of the inside of a courtroom. His former partners at Seaport Group know this. After all, in addition to being former partners at a boutique investment bank, they are also former partners at the exquisitely trashy Sloppy Tuna in Montauk, in which capacity they have been involved in no fewer than 11 lawsuits over the future of that establishment. Those lawsuits were preceded, unsurprisingly, by the circumstances under which Doscher became a former partner of the Seaport Group. Having become, in his own words “the top producer of commissions and revenue for the entire firm,” raking in more than the other three top men combined, and becoming “the face of Seaport,” the firm’s two official partners decided they should formalize what Doscher called “ou...

Goldman Sachs sees ‘high probability’ of a stock market correction in the coming months

Goldman Sachs believes “correction signals are flashing” and is advising its clients to prepare for a correction in the coming months as investors pour cash into the stock market. “Whatever the trigger, a correction of some kind seems a high probability in the coming months,” Peter Oppenheimer, chief global equity strategist at Goldman Sachs, wrote Monday. “Our Goldman Sachs Bull/Bear Market Indicator is at elevated levels, although the continuation of low core inflation and easy monetary policy suggests that a correction is more likely than a bear market.” The S&P 500 has entered the longest period since 1929 without a correction of more than 5 percent, the strategist explained. And while bear markets risks are “low,” Oppenheimer wouldn&...