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FinTech: Sam Bankman-Fried Led FTX.US Makes Inroads Into Stock Trading

May 20, 2022

FTX Stocks is an equity trading platform offered through the FTX US trading application. FTX US announced Thursday a private beta phase trading on the platform for US customers selected from a waitlist. These customers would get access to hundreds of US exchange-listed securities, including common stocks and ETFs, alongside the cryptos already available in the FTX US app.

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BofAML: Assets at European ESG Equity Funds Could Rise by €1 Trillion

November 8, 2019

Regulatory compulsions and structural trends will boost assets under management at ESG equity funds in Europe, say BofAML analysts.
In their study titled “ESG Matters – Europe: Great for the world, good for returns,” the analysts foresee a surge of €1 trillion in assets at these funds by 2030.
Further, one in three European equity funds could be ESG-focused by then.

eToro Bulks Up on Crypto Services; Acquires Delta’s Portfolio Tracker

November 7, 2019

eToro, the multi-asset social and copy trading brokerage, acquired Delta for a reported $5 million. The portfolio tracker gives a bird’s eye view of the crypto market across 6,000 assets at more than 180 exchanges.

KKR may purchase Walgreens Boots Alliance

Will Walgreens Shatter the Private Equity LBO Record?

November 6, 2019

KKR and other PE Firms are Eyeing the Pharmacy Benefits Giant Walgreen Boots Alliance is talking to private equity firms about going private. CNBC reports that KKR is one of several shops thinking about buying the $55 billion company. Such a deal would be a massive purchase for one private equity shop. It could also…

AstraZeneca Launches $1 Billion Fund with CICC (with an AI Twist)

November 6, 2019

AstraZeneca, the British pharma giant, will launch a $1 billion fund with China International Capital Corporation (CICC).

CEM Benchmarking: How REITs Match Up Against Other Investments

November 5, 2019

In October, CEM Benchmarketing compiled a study for the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts (NAREIT).

The study is called “Asset Allocation and Fund Performance of Defined Benefit Pension Funds in the United States, 1998-2017.”

M&A Deal News

CPPIB to Buy Pattern Energy Group for $2.63 Billion

November 4, 2019

The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) announced plans to buy Pattern Energy Group for $2.63 billion. CPPIB announced details of the deal for the renewable energy giant on Monday. Shareholders will receive $26.75 for the stock. That figure is actually lower than the price the stock traded for earlier in the day. In the final hour of trading on Monday, PEGI stock was off 2.5% at $27.03 per share.  

Leon Cooperman Writes Scathing Letter to Senator Elizabeth Warren

November 1, 2019

Leon Cooperman rips Elizabeth Warren in new letter for ‘soak-the-rich positions,’ and treating him like ‘an ungrateful child’

Preqin: Hospitality REITs Looked Strong in 2018

October 31, 2019

A new Preqin report is out.

Preqin joined asset manager Pro-invest Group to track the performance of the hospitality REIT industry. The result is a new study showing the sharp growth across the sector this decade.

Illinois Teachers’ Retirement System Bets Big on Alternatives

October 30, 2019

Illinois Teachers’ Retirement System is preparing to allocate about $1.4 billion toward alternative investment strategies.

A report from Pension and Investments outlines the commitments from the teachers’ pension program. According to the report, ITRS will allocate big sums to private credit strategies. Hayfin Capital Management will receive $500 million, while Intermediate Capital Group will manage another $500 million.

After Bulgari And Dior, Arnault Wants to Add Jeweller Tiffany to the LVMH Luxury Crown

October 30, 2019

Tiffany & Co., the iconic US jeweler that featured in the Audrey Hepburn starrer Breakfast at Tiffany’s, has received a takeover offer from LVMH.
LVMH is the owner of the Louis Vuitton brand and the world’s largest luxury goods group. It reportedly made an all-cash offer of $120 per share of Tiffany, valuing the jeweler at $14.5 billion.

Corporates and Banks Rejoice: Bottomline Launches Real Time Payments

October 30, 2019

Fintech firm Bottomline Technologies enhances its Digital Banking product with the addition of a Real-Time Payments module.
Real-time payments are essential these days to a bank’s competitiveness, particularly in the enterprise arena. Bottomline’s innovation will enable corporate customers to send and receive real-time payments and as well, request payments.

Volatility and Returns: The New CIBC Income Pools Manage Both

October 29, 2019

CIBC Asset Management launches a suite of three Fixed Income Pools that provide access to advanced bond strategies.
The new CIBC Fixed Income Pools access leading portfolio managers from around the world. Investors can use one or more of the Pools depending on their need for regular income or modest capital appreciation, or anything in between.

M&A Deal News

Prologis and Liberty Property Trust Announce REIT Merger

October 28, 2019

Prologis and Liberty Property Trust announced a merger between the two firms. According to deal terms, Prologis will acquire Liberty $12.6 billion, including the assumption of debt. The board of directors of both REITs have approved the transaction.

AT&T Defuses Hedge Fund Elliott Management Pressure With Three-Year Plan

October 28, 2019

Activist hedge fund Elliott Management took aim at AT&T Corporation in September. Elliott had proposed cost cuts, divestment of certain businesses, and a freeze on further acquisitions. Now, the telecom giant has pushed back with a three-year plan to diffuse Elliott’s activist pressures.

Bitcoin Goes Vertical After Chinese President Xi Jinping’s Pro-Blockchain Remarks

October 26, 2019

Bitcoin rallied 16% after Chinese President Xi Jinping called for his country to “seize the opportunity” afforded by blockchain.
Speaking at a Politburo Committee session on blockchain technology trends Thursday, Xi told committee members: “We must take the blockchain as an important breakthrough for independent innovation of core technologies.”

Dan Loeb’s Third Point Holds a $700 Million Stake in EssilorLuxottica

October 24, 2019

Third Point, the New York-based activist hedge fund run by Dan Loeb, has built up a $700 million stake in Ray-Ban maker EssilorLuxottica. It revealed this in its third-quarter investor letter.
The fund also said it saw plenty of potential for growth and profits at EssilorLuxottica, the world’s largest eye-wear company.

Price Cuts the Flavour of the Season: Vanguard Europe Slashes Fees on ETFs and Index Funds

October 24, 2019

Vanguard adds fuel to the fee cut fire in financial services by slashing fees across its ETFs and index-tracking funds. The passive investing giant cut its fees down to an average of 0.2% across its index and ETFs product offerings.

Revolut and Mastercard To Partner On US Debit Cards

October 23, 2019

Revolut, the digital challenger bank, and fintech unicorn have tied up with Mastercard for US debit cards.
Mastercard will handle Revolut’s debit cards when they launch in the US sometime within this year. Also included in today’s deal is Europe – the two businesses will partner on a minimum of 50 percent of all of Revolut’s existing and future cards in Europe.

Fintech Startups

Bank of America Joins the Zero-Commission Wars

October 21, 2019

Bank of America has joined the chorus of brokerages to slash commissions to zero through its Merrill Edge Self-Directed platform. The company said Monday that it will expand its zero-dollar to Preferred Rewards customers. It will also reduce commissions for all other customers. 

Libra May Change to Many Country-Specific Stablecoins

October 21, 2019

The Libra stablecoin, which is to be backed by a basket of fiat currencies, may change its model. David Marcus, Libra’s head, revealed this at a banking seminar.
“We could do it differently,” he said. “Instead of having a synthetic unit … we could have a series of stablecoins, a dollar stablecoin, a euro stablecoin, a sterling pound stable coin, etc.”

Tim Melvin: The Case for Private Equity Replication

October 20, 2019

Private equity replication represents a unique opportunity for investors to avoid the high costs of PE investment. Forbes Magazine recently ran a story about the high barriers to entry for private equity investors.

AT&T and Activist Elliott Management Said to Be in Talks

October 18, 2019

According to the sources, AT&T and Elliott Management have held discussions, and there is an ongoing dialogue. The two parties may likely agree as early as this month, the Wall Street Journal said. However, there is still a risk that talks could break down.

“What’s Next? Investment Trends for the Future” – A New Study Gauges the Institutional View Three Decades Into the Future

October 18, 2019

The poll explores institutional investors’ sentiment and allocations regarding the dominant economic trends in the global economy.
Investcorp, a leading global provider and manager of alternative investment products, conducted the new study. It showed that 78% of respondents were very confident that an aging population would be the most important trend over the next thirty years.

Nearly 770,000 Indexes Scrapped In 2019, Most from Equities

October 18, 2019

A survey of the global index universe by the Index Industry Association (IIA) shows the count of indexes declined by 20% in 2019 from 2018.
The total number of indexes had grown from 3.29 million in 2017 to 3.73 million in 2018 but has declined sharply to 2.96 million in 2019.