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Executive Director of The Tax Institute at H&R Block Kathy Pickering joins Jen Rogers, Myles Udland, and Brian Sozzi to discuss how tax reform is impacting your refund on The Final Round.
Executive Director of The Tax Institute at H&R Block Kathy Pickering joins Jen Rogers, Myles Udland, and Brian Sozzi to discuss how tax reform is impacting your refund on The Final Round.
(Bloomberg) -- Cathie Wood’s flagship ETF bounced back from its worst run of losses since 2018, riding the rally in stay-at-home winners who thrived after Friday’s weaker-than-forecast jobs report.The Ark Innovation exchange-traded fund (ARKK) rose 1.3% to halt an eight-day slide that wiped almost $5 billion from the ETF’s value. Tesla Inc., the fund’s top holding, rose 1.3%, ending its own four-day drop. Roku Inc., the fourth-biggest member, surged 12%. The ETF is still down 30% from its February peak.“I love that setup,” Wood told CNBC in an interview Friday. “Nothing has changed except the price and therefore the return.” She said she expects her strategy of targeting tech companies that could disrupt industries could return more than 25% compounded annually.Ark funds added to their stakes in Twitter, Roku, Skillz Inc. and Peloton Interactive Inc. in the week, according to an email from the firm on its trading activity.Wood gained fame in 2020 when her flagship ETF rose more than nine-fold, handily outperforming the broader market. She piled into stay-at-home winners before the pandemic bottom in March. The holdings in her funds swelled to more than $60 billion, making her company the seventh largest ETF issuer at its peak.The strategy turned sour in February, when investors rotated into companies that would benefit from the economy’s reopening. The recent selloff, sparked by fear that a surge in inflation would make it hard to justify high valuations in many of the stocks she favors, saw Ark’s ETF holdings shrink to $42.6 billion, leaving the firm in 11th place among issuers.Wood previously told CNBC that the rotation was good because it signaled the broader participation in the bull market. “The worst thing that could have happen to us is to have the market narrowly focus on just our ilk of stock -- the innovation space. Instead, it has broadened out,” she said Friday.Wood founded Ark in 2014. The firm’s first four funds were seeded by Bill Hwang, whose family office Archegos Capital Management blew up last month when several bets turned bad.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Coinbase Global Inc. sank to a record low as investors fled high-flying market newcomers.The operator of the largest U.S. cryptocurrency exchange slumped 6% to $256.76 on Thursday, dropping for a fourth straight day. That left the shares just above the $250 reference price for its April direct listing. An exchange-traded fund that tracks shares of companies that recently went public plunged for an eighth day, the longest slide since 2015. Virgin Galactic Holdings Inc. and Opendoor Technologies Inc., companies that came to market through blank-check offerings, each sank at least 3.8%.“We saw a mini-bubble in SPACs, IPOs, crypto, clean-tech and hyper-growth in late 2020 and early 2021 and many of these asset classes are nursing bad hangovers,” said Mike Bailey, director of research at FBB Capital Partners.Coinbase’s slide comes as investors pour into extremely speculative cryptocurrencies such as Dogecoin and Binance Coin -- tokens that the exchange doesn’t offer. Most of its traffic had come from Bitcoin trades, but the price of the largest crypto coin has been mired in a narrow band for weeks. Coinbase started trading at $381 on April 14 before briefly topping $400. It’s now down 22% from the close on its first day.Nasdaq had set a reference price of $250 a share on April 13 for Coinbase’s direct listing, a number that’s a requirement for the stock to begin trading, but not a direct indicator of the company’s potential market capitalization.“What has really hurt Coinbase, now that their direct listing has taken off, you’re seeing expectations that other exchanges are coming on board,” said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at Oanda. “There’s this belief this could be as good as it gets for Coinbase in the short-term.”The Renaissance IPO ETF dropped 4.2% on Thursday, bringing its year-to-date loss to about 14%.(Updates prices.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- The husband-and-wife duo that ran private lender Bridging Finance Inc. has been fired by a court-appointed receiver as Canada’s main securities regulator investigates the firm over alleged mismanagement and self-dealing.PricewaterhouseCoopers, which took control of Bridging at the request of the Ontario Securities Commission, fired David and Natasha Sharpe from the firm they co-founded almost a decade ago. The move came less than a week after the regulator said it was investigating the executives at the firm, which had about C$2 billion ($1.7 billion) in assets under management as of December.“The decision of the receiver is regrettable but not surprising,“ David Sharpe said in an emailed message. “Notwithstanding our termination, we will cooperate with the receiver to the extent possible in the interests of investors while we address the OSC’s misguided allegations.”The Toronto-based firm lends to small and mid-sized companies involved in everything from milling flour to delivering groceries. It attracted a following in particular among high-net-worth individuals with promises of steady gains from its loan portfolio. Those investments are now frozen, and it’s unclear how much will be recouped after the company emerges from receivership.In court documents made public last weekend, the OSC alleged the firm and senior executives mismanaged funds and failed to disclose conflicts of interest.Among the alleged conflicts, David Sharpe received C$19.5 million in undisclosed payments into his personal checking account from a company controlled by entrepreneur Sean McCoshen, the commission says in documents. During that same period, Bridging’s funds had lent more than C$100 million to other companies of McCoshen’s, the commission said in the documents.According to an affidavit by OSC forensic accountant Daniel Tourangeau, much of the undisclosed money was moved into David Sharpe’s personal investment accounts.The OSC said Friday that Bridging and some of its directors and officers, including David Sharpe, may have taken actions “which they knew or reasonably ought to have known perpetrated a fraud on unitholders” of the funds. They may have made statements that were “misleading or untrue” to the regulator, according to an OSC document. Bridging may have also “failed to deal fairly, honestly and in good faith with its clients.”Another central accusation is that Bridging misappropriated about C$35 million “to complete an acquisition for its own benefit” -- a deal with investment manager Ninepoint Partners LP for an interest in an income fund the two firms had been jointly operating.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Copper soared this week to an all-time high, continuing a sizzling rally that’s seen prices double in the past year.The previous copper record was set in 2011, around the peak of the commodities supercycle sparked by China’s rise to economic heavyweight status — fueled by massive amounts of raw materials. This time, investors are betting that copper’s vital role in the world’s shift to green energy will mean surging demand and even higher prices. Copper futures rose as high as $10,440 a ton in London on Friday. What’s the big deal about copper?Through human history, copper has played a critical role in many of civilization’s greatest advances: from early monetary systems to municipal plumbing, from the rise of trains, planes and cars to the devices and networks that underpin the information age.The reddish brown metal is mostly unrivaled as an electrical and thermal conductor, while also being durable and easy to work with. Today, a vast array of uses in all corners of heavy industry, construction and manufacturing mean it’s a famously reliable indicator for trends in the global economy.The copper market was one of the first to react as the Covid-19 coronavirus emerged in Wuhan, with prices slumping by more than a quarter between January and March last year. Then as China’s unprecedented steps to control the domestic spread of the virus started to yield results, copper rapidly rebounded -- and it hasn’t looked back since.But it’s not just China driving the rally. While the country accounts for half of the world’s copper consumption and has played an integral part in copper’s surge, demand there has actually softened this year. Yet prices continue to drive higher.Why is copper surging now?It’s partly due to evidence of recoveries in other major industrial economies, with manufacturing output surging in places like the U.S., Germany and Japan. But investors have also been piling into copper on a bet that global efforts to cut carbon emissions are going to mean the world needs a lot more of the metal, putting a strain on supply. New mine production may be slow to arrive, as mines are hard to find and expensive to develop.Electric vehicles contain about four times as much copper as a conventional car, and vast amounts of copper wiring will be needed in roadside chargers to keep them running. Bringing electricity from offshore wind farms to national power grids is also a copper-intensive exercise.Governments around the world have announced ambitious infrastructure investment plans, much of which involves construction, green energy, or both.Are things that use copper getting more expensive?Increasingly, yes. Major manufacturers have been hiking prices for air-conditioning units and fridges over the past few months, and they’re warning there may be more to come.Still, copper is often used in small quantities in complex consumer goods, and so the doubling in prices over the past year won’t be nearly as painful for consumers as an equivalent jump in food or fuel prices would be. Similarly, governments rolling out big spending programs might not be too worried about a rise in copper alone.But with other raw materials rising too, there are growing signs that they’ll get less bang for their buck as the cost of big-ticket items like wind turbines rise.What does it mean for the economy?There are mounting concerns that the broad rally in everything from lumber to steel will force central bankers to step in to stop inflation in raw-materials markets spiralling out of control.In turn, the stellar economic rebound that’s driving the commodities rally may start to stall as businesses are hit by higher interest rates, compressed margins, and waning demand from consumers. The key question for policymakers at the Federal Reserve — and traders on Wall Street — is whether the broad spike in commodities prices will be temporary.Could the rally fizzle out?In the case of copper, there are some signs that spot demand is starting to cool, particularly in China, and some analysts and traders say the record prices aren’t justified by today’s fundamentals.The view among policymakers is that the rise in commodities prices will prove short-lived, as consumers will focus their spending on services and experiences as economies open up, easing the strain on demand for commodities-intensive items such as second homes, electronics and appliances seen during lockdown.For copper though, it’s not just about strong demand today. In fact, a lot of expected spending on renewables and electric-vehicle infrastructure is yet to really materialize. When it does, it could transform the outlook for copper usage in countries such as Germany and the U.S.How high could copper go?Trafigura Group, the world’s top copper trader, and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. both say prices could hit $15,000 a ton in the coming years, on the back of a global surge in demand due to the shift to green energy. Bank of America says $20,000 could even be possible if drastic issues arise on the supply side.The copper market itself may also be facing a big shift. Trafigura predicts that demand growth in China will be eclipsed by rising consumption in the rest of the world over the coming decade, in a dramatic reversal of the recent trend. That could help underpin a new “supercycle” in the copper market, driving prices higher for years on the back of a step-change in global demand.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- One of the biggest Brexit battlegrounds between the European Union and the U.K. now has a price tag: at least $2.4 million a day.That’s how much any move by the European Union to cut off access to London’s dominant clearinghouses for derivatives could cost traders in euro interest rate swaps, net of buying, according to an estimate from Albert Menkveld, professor of finance at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, who has sat on advisory panels to European regulatory authorities.Fragmenting cross-Channel clearing would result in additional costs because global dealers would need more collateral for their positions in multiple clearinghouses in the U.K. and in the EU, Menkveld said. They wouldn’t be able to offset, or net, the positions as easily and that would require dealers to raise extra funds.Those additional costs would likely be passed on to pensions, money managers and other users of derivatives in the local jurisdiction, Menkveld said, who compares the burden on financial markets to traffic jams caused by passport controls.“This is the price we all paid for control by national authorities,” Menkveld wrote in a blog post. “As a European citizen I can now zip onto the Autobahn at 100-plus kilometers per hour, but my pension fund might soon pay for crossing the border with the U.K. to diversify risk.”His tally is one of the first to show the immediate fallout if authorities stop the seamless, cross-Channel settlement of trillions in euro interest rate swap contracts, which currently takes place largely in London. The actual cost could be far greater if it weakens London’s attractiveness as a global financial center. The business is widely viewed as a core pillar of London’s standing and the EU’s desire to pull more of that business away has prompted sabre-rattling from politicians, financiers and even the governor of the Bank of England.The U.K. and major lobby groups for the biggest banks and money managers in the world are calling for the EU to maintain easy access to London clearinghouses, including the London Stock Exchange Group Plc’s LCH unit which is the world’s biggest for euro interest rate swaps. The European Commission in Brussels wants the bloc’s traders to move more of their euro-denominated business inside the EU and not rely so heavily on London. A ruling last year extended access to London through June 2022.Clearinghouses serve as a key hub in the global financial system, settling hundreds of trillions of dollars in deals between banks, hedge funds, pensions and a wide range of corporations. The firms collect collateral, or margin, from buyers and sellers to reduce the risk that the default of one side spreads panic to the other and, in turn, across the broader system.If the temporary decision isn’t renewed, Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey has said a quarter of euro-derivatives clearing business would need to shift to the EU. The rest would likely stay in London because it is currently the most efficient place for it, he said.Additional CostsThe estimated net price impact probably understates the total additional costs to traders in the market from the disruption that would ensue, Menkveld said.Costs could mount because traders would probably have a harder time offsetting positions in euros, pounds and other currencies as well as the increased compliance burden. In more stressed markets, traders could face much higher costs from the split and difficulty using clearinghouses in both the U.K. and the EU, he said.“There is a trade-off here between the benefits of local control by regulators, and the additional costs that fragmented clearing imposes,” Menkveld said. “The benefit is hard to quantify but the costs are non-trivial.”For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
While some technology stocks got a boost Friday after a disappointing U.S. jobs report, some portfolio managers say that blow-out earnings from several large technology companies over the last few weeks are not enough to keep making outsized bets on the sector. Instead, those fund managers say that they are continuing to rotate into value and cyclical stocks - whose fortunes are closely tied to economic conditions - in anticipation that the economic recovery will be longer and more gradual than originally anticipated. The notion that the U.S. jobs recovery has not yet peaked was reinforced by data from the Labor Department on Friday that showed U.S. employers hired far fewer workers than anticipated.
Bill Gates transferred stakes in several companies to Melinda Gates on the day the power couple announced their divorce
(Bloomberg) -- Global central banks are starting to wind down the trillion-dollar money printing machines set in motion to rescue their economies in 2020. Getting ahead of them is becoming this year’s biggest currency trade.Early changes to bond-buying programs from Canada and Britain have been rewarding for foreign-exchange players. Meanwhile, Norway, which hasn’t needed to deploy more unconventional policy such as asset purchases, is already talking about raising rates. The trio’s currencies are leading the Group of 10 this year, posting gains of more than 4%.Yet that acceleration may already be losing momentum now that those policy makers have shown their hands. That has left traders on a mission to identify economies that are heating up too fast for comfort -- and those where tightening is a far-flung prospect -- in order to pick the next winners and losers.One strategy is to follow the commodity boom and bet on exporters such as Australia and New Zealand, where growth is roaring back. Another playbook involves buying the currency of a country likely to hike rates, while selling that of a country committed to ultra-low rates.“Some central banks outside the Fed like the Reserve Bank of Australia and the Reserve Bank of New Zealand may find themselves in a position similar to the Bank of Canada, where they could be tightening much sooner than what they’ve initially indicated,” said Mazen Issa, senior FX strategist at TD Securities. Canada’s move “may give a little bit more confidence to the policy community to begin making little tweaks to their own policy outlooks as well,” he added.Balancing ActLife in developed nations is returning to normal thanks to vaccines that have arrested the spread of coronavirus. But for central bankers, extricating themselves from the programs that staved off economic collapse last year is a delicate balancing act.The Federal Reserve, often called the central bank of the world, is taking a softly-softly approach toward policy normalization designed to avoid market chaos reminiscent of 2013’s taper tantrum. Ditto the European Central Bank, whose chief Christine Lagarde recently said talk of tapering is “premature.” But waiting as growth roars back runs the risk of falling so far out of step with economic reality as to provoke a policy overshoot.“The challenge for the Fed is that it should not wait too long because they may have to move faster, and that may shock the market,” said Athanasios Vamvakidis, head of G-10 FX strategy at Bank of America Corp. “It all depends on data.”The latest data may justify the Fed’s steady hand: April’s disappointing jobs report Friday recast inflation and rate-hike expectations.Tapering BeckonsWhether or not central bank chiefs are ready to talk about it now, tapering is drawing closer. Asset purchases from the Fed, the ECB, the Bank of Japan and BOE will likely slide to around $3.4 trillion this year from almost $9 trillion in 2020, before falling to just $400 billion in 2022, according to Bank of America.Traders are going all-in at signs of forthcoming policy tweaks: the euro gained Friday after ECB Governing Council member Martins Kazaks said the institution could decide to scale back its emergency bond-buying program as early as next month.“Growth is clearly accelerating in the G-10 countries, with vaccination campaigns picking up momentum. said Philippe Jauer, global head of FX at Amundi Asset Management. “This means policy could accelerate more than anticipated by the market.”North Meets SouthWhile those debates roll on, FX investors may get more joy betting that central banks Down Under take the lead of their northern Commonwealth peer.At Robeco Institutional Asset Management, fund manager Bob Stoutjesdijk cashed out of the Canadian dollar after the BOC’s taper last month. He’s got Australia and New Zealand on his radar, though he’s wary of lingering border controls that will sap tourism revenues and mixed signals from their central banks.Speculative investors, including hedge funds, held bullish bets on the New Zealand dollar for a sixth consecutive week through May 4, according to the latest data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. They increased net longs on the Aussie dollar for the first time in three weeks. Meanwhile, net shorts on the yen held near the most in two years. The divide between currencies backed by central banks taking steps toward pulling back support and those that are further off is also palpable in the options market.Sentiment on the Australian and New Zealand dollars versus their Japanese peer has turned less pessimistic this year, as seen in risk reversals. The premium on options betting on declines in the Aussie and kiwi against the yen has narrowed across the curve from end-2020 levels, for tenors starting at one-week all the way up to a year.There’s room for upside in the Canadian dollar versus the yen, and in the Norwegian krone against the Swiss franc and euro, given the contrast in their policy paths, according to Audrey Childe-Freeman, Bloomberg Intelligence chief G-10 FX strategist.The Aussie and kiwi dollars are likely to outperform based on higher yields alone, she said, even if their central banks have resisted adjusting to more hawkish policy language so far.While the RBA has been adamant that it will keep pumping monetary support into the economy until it is fully repaired, its most recent outlook showed upbeat trajectories for growth and jobs, showing it’s on track to drive faster pay gains and inflation back toward its target. Rising inflationary pressures and house prices have also been highlighted by the RBNZ.“No central banks want to shock the market, but they will have to watch data. If the data is strong, we would expect the Fed to normalize the policy. We expect the same for RBA and RBNZ,” said Vamvakidis at Bank of America. “They will be the ones to watch because of their potential to surprise to the upside.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
As U.S. stocks head into a seasonally rocky stretch, investors are gauging to what extent markets have anticipated a number of factors that could sway asset prices, from massive government stimulus to looming inflation. Though equities remain near all-time highs, some sectors have gotten off to an uneven start this month, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite down more than 2% so far this week while the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose to a record on Thursday. While retail investors have been net buyers of stocks for 10 straight weeks, hedge funds have been sellers, client data from BofA Global Research showed, with the four-week average of net sales of equities by hedge funds hitting their highest levels since the firm began tracking the data in 2008.
(Bloomberg) -- The European Central Bank is set to reward some of the region’s biggest financial institutions with more than 1 billion euros ($1.2 billion) this year in return for keeping up the flow of credit during the pandemic.Six lenders including ING Groep NV and Deutsche Bank AG have disclosed their expected benefit from the central bank’s targeted longer-term loan programs. Together, the banks said they earned about 416 million euros in the first quarter while other lenders said they intend to book gains later in the year.Seven years after turning banking on its head with the introduction of negative interest rates, the ECB is dangling enhanced subsidies to get banks to pump cheap cash into an economy lurching from one crisis to another. The benefits help offset some of the pressure from the ECB’s other policies which have eaten into lending profits and introduced costs for client deposits.An ECB spokesman declined to comment on the payments. ECB President Christine Lagarde said in April that the program plays a “crucial role” in supporting bank lending to firms and households.The ECB has offered several rounds of such targeted long-term loans. The latest allotment was in March when it made 330.5 billion euros available to banks. The favorable rates are paid subject to conditions on the banks reaching specific targets regarding the amount of loans they make to the broader economy.The lenders benefit even more now than with similar operations in the past because the conditions were sweetened during the pandemic so that that they can borrow at an even lower rate than the ECB’s negative deposit rate. While the deposit rate acts as a charge on reserves, that’s more than outweighed by the generosity of the rate on the long-term loans.“We don’t earn the money for free,” Deutsche Bank finance chief James von Moltke told analysts on a conference call last week. “The business is executing on lending, supporting clients, that allows us to achieve those thresholds.”For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Stocks traded mixed Friday as investors digested a disappointing April jobs report, which showed the U.S. economy added back far fewer jobs than expected last month despite easing stay-in-place restrictions.
(Bloomberg) -- Hertz Global Holdings Inc. said it’s seeing a boost in travel demand despite reporting a 33% drop in revenue in the three months through March 31.The company reiterated that it’s on track to emerge from bankruptcy in June. It’s weighing plans from two sets of suiters to take the company out of Chapter 11. As the nation emerges from Covid-19 restrictions, travel demand has come back and more consumers are seeking car rentals.Hertz is in talks with potential bankruptcy plan sponsors and said in a regulatory filing Friday that a group including Centerbridge Partners, Warburg Pincus and Dundon Capital Partners intends to counter a proposal from Knighthead Capital Management and Certares Management that the car renter had deemed superior. An auction to determine the highest bidder between the dueling groups is scheduled for May 10, with a hearing to approve the final result set for May 14.“This quarter we realized the first effects of the leisure travel rebound and capitalized on strong demand-driven pricing in destination markets that exceeded 2019 levels,” Paul Stone, Hertz’s president and chief executive officer, said in a statement. “We’re continuing to see improved demand and are optimistic about a sustained recovery.”Revenue SlideHertz reported first-quarter revenue of $1.3 billion, down 32% from a year ago. Net income was $190 million and adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization were $2 million. Liquidity at the end of the quarter was $1.1 billion. On an adjusted basis, Hertz lost 33 cents a share, or $52 million.In the first quarter, the company also closed the sale of its Donlen commercial leasing business for $891 million in cash.Hertz said its vehicle utilization rate was 75%, which is close to normal levels and up from 67% a year ago when the Covid-19 pandemic starting crimping travel. The company’s revenue per day rose 11% to almost $48, as a shortage of cars and boosted travel demand helped the rental firm get better rates. Depreciation per vehicle per month decreased 21% to $234, driven by strength in used-car values.Both investor groups have submitted multiple rounds of proposals to buy the company. The latest plans from each side offer lenders and bondholders full repayment and a partial recovery for shareholders, a relative rarity in bankruptcy proceedings. The Knighthead and Certares plan assigned Hertz an enterprise value of around $6.2 billion and offered shareholders a mix of cash and warrants worth around $2.25 a share, Bloomberg reported.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Things can't just go back to normal after 18-month reprieve, lawmakers say.
The S&P 500 initially pulled back during the course of the week only to show signs of strength yet again. The jobs number of course is a huge disappointment, thereby allowing Wall Street to play the “liquidity game.”
(Bloomberg) -- Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is wading deeper into the $1 trillion Bitcoin market, offering Wall Street investors a way to place big bets.The investment bank has opened up trading with non-deliverable forwards, a derivative tied to Bitcoin’s price that pays out in cash. The firm then protects itself from the digital currency’s famous volatility by buying and selling Bitcoin futures in block trades on CME Group Inc., using Cumberland DRW as its trading partner. Goldman, which still isn’t active in the Bitcoin spot market, introduced the wagers to clients last month without an announcement.“Institutional demand continues to grow significantly in this space, and being able to work with partners like Cumberland will help us expand our capabilities,” said Max Minton, Goldman’s Asia-Pacific head of digital assets. The new offering is “paving the way for us to evolve our nascent cash-settled crypto-currency capabilities.”Goldman Sachs, which restarted a trading desk this year to help clients deal in publicly traded futures tied to Bitcoin, said in March it was also close to offering private wealth clients additional vehicles to bet on crypto prices. But the push into forwards dramatically increases its capacity to help big investors take positions. The partnership with Cumberland underscores the bank’s willingness to work with outside firms to help it do so, according to people familiar with the matter, speaking on the condition they not be identified.For years after its creation in 2009, Bitcoin was shunned by Wall Street banks, with JPMorgan Chase & Co. Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon once threatening to fire any of his traders caught buying and selling the digital currency. While Dimon later softened his tone, the banking world has long seen Bitcoin as a plaything for criminals, drug dealers and money launderers.Read more: Wall Street Stays on Crypto Sidelines as Tesla Boosts BitcoinBut client interest and Bitcoin’s astronomical price gains -- reaching a high of almost $65,000 in April -- have turned many bankers around, with Morgan Stanley making a Bitcoin trust product available to its customers and JPMorgan working on a similar offering.“Goldman Sachs serves as a bellwether of how sophisticated, institutional investors approach shifts in the market,” said Justin Chow, global head of business development for Cumberland DRW. “We’ve seen rapid adoption and interest in crypto from more traditional financial firms this year, and Goldman’s entrance into the space is yet another sign of how it’s maturing.”Banks are still wary of the regulatory challenges of holding Bitcoin outright. As derivatives settled with cash, the products Goldman Sachs is offering don’t require dealing with physical Bitcoin. In a similar way, the Morgan Stanley and JPMorgan trusts give customers access to vehicles tracking Bitcoin’s price while using a third party to buy and hold the underlying digital asset.Goldman Sachs may next offer hedge fund clients exchange-traded notes based on Bitcoin or access to the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust, one of the people said.“The crypto ecosystem is developing rapidly,” Chow said. “There is progress being made in offering ETFs, new custody providers coming online and optimism that regulatory efforts are coming into focus. It’s a great time to be in the space.”For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
At least two private equity funds are seeking to acquire stakes in Venezuelan companies that have survived the country's economic crisis, spurred in part by optimism that the Biden administration could ease sanctions on the South American nation, according to a dozen sources familiar with the talks. The interest by funds, including Miami-based 3B1 Guacamaya Fund and Cayman Islands-based Knossos Asset Management, follows Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro's abrupt 2019 liberalization of the economy https://www.reuters.com/article/us-venezuela-shops-idCAKBN1YK16X amid a sanctions program created by former U.S. President Donald Trump. Maduro's unexpected overhaul scrapped a price control system and permitted dollar transactions for the first time in decades, allowing a small group of firms to emerge from the wreckage of a four-year hyperinflationary crisis that prompted many multinationals to leave https://t.co/I8H1Kakhhs?amp=1 the country or sell subsidiaries.
(Bloomberg) -- Gold rose for a third straight day, posting its biggest weekly increase since November after a report showed a surprise slowdown in U.S. job growth, supporting the case for continued economic stimulus and low interest rates.Non-farm payroll numbers show the U.S. added 266,000 jobs in April, compared with the 1 million median estimate of analysts. Treasury yields sank on the news as risk appetite faded and the dollar weakened, boosting demand for gold as an alternative asset.Gold has rebounded after a poor start to the year, when it came under pressure from gains in the dollar and bond yields. Both drivers have paused for now, while inflation expectations drive higher amid a commodities boom, lifting the metal’s appeal as a hedge. The jobs numbers reinforce views that monetary tightening remains distant, further helping non-interest-bearing bullion.The jobs data “is lagging, but suggest that, using last month’s data there was no urgency to change policy, which is price supportive for gold,” said Giovanni Staunovo, an analyst at UBS Group AG.Bullion surged on Thursday after several Federal Reserve officials played down concerns over inflation and pushed back on the idea of tapering bond purchases.Spot gold rose as much as 1.6% to $1,843.43 an ounce, the highest since mid February. Prices gained 3.5% this week, the most since early November. Futures for June delivery on the Comex rose 0.9% to settle at $1,831.30 an ounce. Spot silver and platinum also advanced. Palladium dropped as much as 4.1% as traders booked profit after a price rally that sent the emission-curbing metal to fresh record highs.The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index retreated 0.7% after falling 0.5% on Thursday.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Commodity prices jumped, the dollar slid to a two-month low and major global equity indexes scaled record peaks on Friday after weak U.S. jobs data for April tamped down fears that a booming economy would spark inflation and higher interest rates. The data eased worries the Federal Reserve would reduce its massive stimulus program anytime soon and was seen as helping President Joe Biden push through his plans for trillions of dollars in new spending on infrastructure and education. Nonfarm payrolls increased by only 266,000 jobs last month.Data for March was revised down to show 770,000 jobs addedinstead of 916,000 as previously reported.
Families can get up to $50 off their bill to stay connected during the pandemic.
Stocks traded mixed Thursday morning, with the Nasdaq looking to extend its losing streak to a fifth straight session as technology stocks came under more pressure.