January 26 2016

elb2CBOE makes a modest acquisition of a Y Combinator alumnus, BESA alumnus looks at making Safe ZA SME exchange. SEC may refund a fine and there’s more…

Meanwhile, I was interviewed by Polish tech startup blogger Paul Chen about BTC and Blockchain.

Happy scrolling:

Public Markets

CBOE Makes Majority Investment In Vest Financial


PLY: Interesting, albeit not material, deal for CBOE, buying a company which provides packaged products for investors. Note that previous investors who have now exited include: Y Combinator, Payment Ventures, & First Round Capital.


IDX Eyes More Public Investment Through Mutual Funds

Jakarta Post

The Indonesian bourse authority has launched the biggest mutual fund expo in Jakarta aimed at increasing public investment in the capital market. Currently, the heavily populated country has very low public participation in the capital market. Only 250,000 people of the nation’s 250 million are registered as investors, according to Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX) data.


Remarks Of CFTC Chairman Timothy Massad Before The 2016 P.R.I.M.E. Finance Annual Conference



Portuguese Investor Group Seeks EC Ruling With Anti-Market Data Fee Petition


ATM Associacao de Investidores, a Portuguese investor industry association, has launched a petition to protest market data fees charged by stock exchanges, in an attempt to influence the European Commission’s MiFID 2 regulation for a fairer market for investors, brokers and small financial intermediaries.

PLY: Interesting…watch this space, clearly.

Private Markets

Why Wall Street Is So Afraid of IEX


The controversy surrounding IEX amounts to more than an obscure finance story. This is about a startup with the potential to disrupt an entrenched industry.

PLY: Big picture with perspective: ‘Big World’ wants IEX, Wall Street is only digging its own grave with any ongoing opposition…


Plans afoot for ZA stock exchange for SMEs

Dineo Faku – IOL ZA

PLY: Francois Venter, formerly of the Bond Exchange and a founder of the Seychelles Financial Exchange plans to get at least 1 000 companies listed on his alternative stock exchange over the next 10 years which goes by the name of SA Financial Exchange (NB: Safe – i.e. not a resurrection of the futures market acronym SAFEX previously acquired by JSE…).


Hong Kong’s financial development council dismisses concerns over third board

Enoch Yiu South China Morning Post (subscription)

The government-appointed Financial Services Development Council (FSDC) supports the HKEx proposal to launch a third board for SME listings.

SEC Rules Could Cut Number Of Alternative Trading Systems

RICK BAERT –  Pensions & Investments

Proposed SEC regulations to require more transparency for dark pools and other ATS, if approved, could lead to contraction in the now-fragmented equity trading landscape.


SEC Expected To Give Unusual Refund For Insider-Trading Penalty

ARUNA VISWANATHA – Wall Street Journal (blog)

A federal appeals court’s landmark 2014 Newman ruling continues to roil enforcement for insider trading cases. The latest wrinkle: The SEC is expected to refund a $21.5 million settlement that hedge fund Level Global entered into in 2013 to resolve allegations that it profited from trades on corporate secrets about Dell Inc. and other technology firms. Experts said that the refund may be unprecedented.

PLY: We apologise to all readers who have just liberally applied coffee over their pc/mobile device screen.


EU Says To Monitor, Not Regulate ‘hyped’ Virtual Currencies

Huw Jones – Euronews

The EU will monitor rather than regulate “hyped” virtual currencies for now, because too little is known to justify new rules beyond reining in specific risks like money-laundering, the body’s executive said on Monday. The world’s 600 virtual currencies are tiny, with bitcoin alone accounting for 90 percent of the $7 billion sector, compared with daily turnover of about $5 trillion on global foreign exchange markets.

PLY: Rare outbreak of pragmatism from the EU, perhaps not unrelated to the lack of budget to regulate anything more currently while extraneous threats to the survival of Brussels’ Empire are clearly greater than a spot of cryptocurrency mining…


Rupaiya Exchange: Facilitating Online P2P Lending Market In India

Gaurav Sangwani – iamWire

To give P2P lending a much required kickstart in India, Rupaiya Exchange was launched.


Deutsche Boerse Urges Banks To Overhaul Amid Cheap Funds

Reuters UK

Financial services firms must take advantage of rock bottom interest rates to make investments and takeovers and rethink business models, the chief executive of German exchange operator Deutsche Boerse said on Monday.

PLY: Blood Blood Blood – buy something… So long as it is a focussed approach this ought to work well but DB1 also can inject a bit of mojo to show the value of its existing assets too methinks, it is a full ‘department store’ unlike any other.

Special Section: FTI, NSEL, India at the Crossroads

PLY: MCX up 1%, FTIL up 2%, no news after yesterday’s little flurry.


Borsa Istanbul Extends PoP Services


Borsa İstanbul has extended the scope of its services provided to data vendors, service providers, and other stakeholders following the protocol signed with its partner Spintek, providing infrastructure & operation services for Borsa İstanbul’s Point of Presence (PoP) at Equinix in London.


CFTC Cancels TAC Meeting Scheduled For January 26, 2016


CFTC has cancelled the Technology Advisory Committee meeting scheduled for Tuesday, January 26, 2016 due to weather related conditions in the Washington Metropolitan area. The meeting will be rescheduled for a date TBN.

PLY: Financial market technology comes a poor second to Acts of God. Presumably my old friend Bill Harts at the HFT fundamentalist lobbying group MMI will now issue a demand that snow be subject to the same latencies as more common meteorological patterns.


TWSE Data Center Officially Launched

China Post

TWSE held has officially commissioned its new data center.


FXCM Integrates CFD Pricing Into FlexTrade’s Technology


FXCM announced the integration of FXCM’s CFD pricing into FlexTrade’s technology.

Career Paths

Andrew Bailey will take up the role of CEO of the UK FCA.as soon as a successor to his role as head of PRA is found. He succeeds interim CEO  Tracey McDermott, whose interest in the job curiously evaporated a month ago and will take on the role from which Martin Wheatley “was unceremoniously removed” as City AM puts it, last September. Bailey is a Bank of England veteran.

According to eFinancialCareers Fabrizio Gallo global head of equities at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, is no longer a director at the bank’s European subsidiary.

In a report in the Business Standard, the SEBI committee to help oversee commodities in the new integrated regulator will be chaired by Ramesh Chand, (an agri-bureaucrat), of NITI Aayog. Members are Sameer Shah, managing director, NCDX & P K Singhal, joint MD at MCX.

Financial Calendar

26.01 – CFTC’s Technology Advisory Committee – cancelled due to bad weather.

28.01 – Nasdaq Q4 2015 Results

New! 10.02: BGC Partners ‘Q4 & Full Year 2015 Results

All forthcoming exchange / investment related events are now listed in our Events page.

Share Notes

Mandatory Notification Of Trades – Oslo Børs VPS Holding ASA


In connection with a monthly share savings plan for employees of subsidiaries, Oslo Børs VPS Holding has sold a total of 1990 shares. New holding is 7297 shares. Employees paid a share price of NOK 81,95- per share, but were allowed a discount of 20% on purchases up to NOK 625.

Fidessa CEO, Chris Aspinwall, bought 7 shares in the company on Friday 22nd January at a price of 1876.00 p. (bargain 13,132 GBP) He now holds 124,597 shares.

PLY: Even small purchases are welcome, especially in a legacy vendor like Fidessa.

Analyst Notes

Peter Lenardos of RBC made some changes to his outlook for European exchanges, issuing a note Monday to bring the valuation methodologies of the European exchange groups in line with US-based groups which RBC has recently begun covering. He has upgraded DB1 to Outperform (from Sector Perform) and downgraded ENX to Sector Perform from Outperform. He maintains an Outperform rating on LSEG and an Underperform rating on BME.

IBKR downgraded from “buy” to “hold” by Zacks – $45.69 price target

Fitch Affirms Thomson Reuters’ IDR at ‘BBB+’; Outlook Stable

LSE “Outperform” Rating Reiterated By RBC Capital Markets + GBX 3,000 Price Target

Charles Schwab upgraded from “neutral” to “buy” by Nomura

DB rating upgraded from “Sector Perform” to “Outperform” by RBC Capital Mkts

CME Group given an “A+” credit rating by Morningstar – low default risk

A full table of current analysis can be found on our Analyst Ratings page which is updated daily.


Jon Medved Speaks About The Future Of OurCrowd & Equity Crowdfunding

JD Alois – Crowdfund Insider

While nominally based in Israel, OurCrowd has chosen a decidedly global path in assisting promising companies raise capital while providing unique investment opportunities to an audience previously denied easy access.


Crowdfunding Review: Exploding Kittens; Bankrupt Zano; Will Crowdsourcing Ever Work?

Mike “Mish” Shedlock – FXStreet


FCA Consults On CASS For Crowdfunding Platforms (subscription)

Claire Cummings – Lexology

The FCA is consulting on the segregation of client money by firms that operate loan-based crowdfunding platforms (CP16/4). The FCA is proposing rules to simplify client money requirements for firms that operate electronic systems relating to P2P lending platforms and hold both regulated and unregulated client money accounts. In addition to the proposed changes, the FCA also proposes new guidance to clarify that, where a firm operating a loan-based crowdfunding platform holds money that has not yet been invested for a client, this should be treated as client money, unless the circumstances are such that it could never be invested in relation to a P2P agreement. Comments are invited by 11 February 2016.

Other stories

How 3 Asian Countries Are Reacting To Bitcoin

Global Risk Insights

While many associate digital currencies such as Bitcoin with places like Silicon Valley, in actuality the major region for cryptocurrency activity is Asia. The three largest economies in the Asia Pacific; China, Japan, and South Korea have all begun to implement their digital currency frameworks, with varying results.


DTCC Publishes Blockchain White Paper


PLY: Provide some bona fides and you can download the  white paper here.


FIA December SEF Tracker Report



The Evolving Nature Of P2P Lending Marketplaces

Matt Helman TechCrunch

PLY: A very useful update on progress and potential – 50%+ CAGR predictions et al!

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