May 21 2013

elb2 The least surprising news of today is clearly the overwhelming popularity of the ICE board and management at their AGM – that delivering shareholder value thing clearly rings the bells of shareholders (competitors take note!).

Elsewhere bond mergers and competition in Asia as well as news that banks are still opening desks in Warsaw to service the one great CEE market.

(Note for bankers: you may not recall the concept of opening a desk. It’s the opposite of closing the desk and involves a sort of inverse redundancy repo called “hiring.” Once it was popular amongst western financial centres to hire more than you fire although those days seem long over now…).

Here are today’s headlines:

Public Markets

IntercontinentalExchange Announces 2013 Annual Meeting Results

IntercontinentalExchange (NYSE: ICE), a leading operator of global markets and clearing houses, announced today the result of the company’s 2013 Annual Meeting of Stockholders, which was held May 17, 2013.
All 11 director nominees received a majority of votes cast, with an average of 95.3% of stockholders voting “for” the proposed directors in the elections. Stockholders approved an advisory proposal on executive compensation with 98.5% voting “for” the proposal.

SGX in talks to sell stake in PDS

Channel News Asia

Singapore Exchange (SGX) is in discussions to sell its 20 per cent stake in Philippine Dealing System Holdings Corp (PDS).
In a statement, SGX said the Philippine Stock Exchange, Inc (PSE) wishes to enter discussions with SGX on the sale of its 20 per cent stake in PDS which operates the securities depository and fixed income exchange in the Philippines.
SGX had acquired 20 per cent of PDS in 2007.

Philippine Bourse Signs Agreement to Pursue Debt Exchange Merger


The Philippine Stock Exchange Inc. (PSE) agreed with the nation’s bankers association and Singapore Exchange Ltd. (SGX) to pursue a combination of the country’s equities and bonds exchanges.
The Philippine exchange signed a “basic memorandum of agreement” to merge with the debt exchange, President Hans Sicat said today in Manila. The bourse, Singapore Exchange and the Bankers Association of the Philippines hold 65 percent of the Philippine Dealing System Holdings Corp., owner of the bond exchange and a securities depository.

BGC Partners Receives HSR Approval for Proposed Transaction with NASDAQ OMX

The Sacramento Bee

BGC Partners, Inc. (NASDAQ: BGCP) (“BGC Partners,” “BGC,” or “the Company”), a leading global brokerage company primarily servicing the wholesale financial and real estate markets, today announced that it has received regulatory approval for the proposed sale of certain assets comprising its platform for the fully electronic trading of benchmark, on-the-run US Treasuries to NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: NDAQ) (“NASDAQ OMX”). As previously disclosed, total consideration for this transaction is up to $1.234 billion.

SocGen Joins UniCredit in Warsaw as Equity Sales Surge


Record stock sales and a growing economy are helping Poland solidify its position as central Europe’s busiest financial center, even as euro-area neighbors struggle to shake the sovereign-debt crisis.
UniCredit SpA (UCG), JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) and Societe Generale SA (GLE) are establishing investment-banking hubs in Warsaw, where equity sales of 15 billion zloty ($4.6 billion) this year exceed the $490 million in the rest of central Europe.

NASDAQ OMX And Smarsh Establish Partnership To Deliver Deeper Compliance Risk Capabilities

Smarsh®, the leading provider of hosted archiving and compliance solutions for email and electronic communications, announced today at FINRA’s 2013 Annual Conference a new partnership with NASDAQ OMX (Nasdaq:NDAQ) to offer Smarsh archiving and compliance solutions to corporations, broker-dealers, exchanges and regulators alongside NASDAQ OMX’s SMARTS market surveillance and compliance solutions.
NASDAQ OMX provides its SMARTS market surveillance and compliance solutions to broker-dealers, buy-side firms, regulators and exchanges around the world, making it the industry’s leading market surveillance platform for real-time cross-asset surveillance.

United Stock Exchange sets up a clash with BSE over debt trading

Economic Times

India’s oldest stock exchange BSE and United Stock Exchange (USE), in which the former is the single largest shareholder, are gearing for a fight over the launch of debt market trading despite the new bourse having signed a non-compete agreement in 2010.

The non-compete agreement bars USE from competing in any trading segment BSE is present. BSE is among the largest exchanges for reporting of debt market volumes for over the counter market in India and hence wants to start trading in it.

IRS Ex-Official Withdraws Candidacy for CBOE Board (subscription requried)

Wall Street Journal

Douglas Shulman, a former commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service, Monday withdrew his candidacy for election to the board of CBOE Holdings Inc., the parent of the Chicago Board Options Exchange.

Private Markets

Lawmakers question SFC handling of HKMEx closure

South China Morning Post

Legislators on Monday cast doubts on the securities regulator’s decision to allow the Hong Kong Mercantile Exchange to surrender its licence, instead of immediately suspending it, after it emerged that the firm had insufficient capital.
The HKMEx, a commodity trader, chaired by Executive Councillor Barry Cheung Chun-yuen, last week handed back its trading licence and suspended operations after it became clear it could no longer meet the requirement that it have sufficient cash to cover nine months of operations.

The fall of HKMEx and what it means for Hong Kong’s commodities dreams (subscription required)

Financial Times (blog)

The sudden blow-up of the Hong Kong Mercantile Exchange (HKMEx) not only represents the collapse of a commercial proposition. It is also a warning call to Hong Kong’s ambition to develop itself as a commodities trading centre.

IP lawyers eye new patent-licensing marketplace

Thomson Reuters News & Insight

An electronic marketplace for licensing rights to inventions is preparing to launch in the next few weeks, a venture aimed at creating a more liquid and efficient market for intellectual property.
Intellectual Property Exchange International Inc (IPXI) is the brainchild of IP services firm Ocean Tomo, which already has experimented with alternative ways to monetize IP, such as auctions in which bidders vie for patents. The new exchange aims to take a page from the playbook of stock and commodities markets by creating a for-profit system in which patent licenses can be traded.

Excitement over new China stock market board


The country’s financial circles have been enthusiastic about the prospects of a large expansion this year to the New Third Board, a nationwide over-the-counter (OTC) market for non-public companies’ shares, which now covers only four pilot regions.
The State Council’s Standing Committee has listed the task of enacting rules for the expansion as one of the government’s key jobs this year. It announced the decision after a meeting on May 6.

MF Global trustee liquidates broker’s CME Group memberships


The trustee liquidating MF Global has sold a collection of the bankrupt broker’s CME Group memberships for amounts below recent selling prices, according to a list of transactions published by the exchange on Monday.
Eighteen months after MF Global collapsed, Trustee James Giddens last week sold a variety of memberships owned by the firm that bestow different trading rights on the holders.

Kenyan Bourse to Start Online Stocks Trading by Fourth Quarter


The Nairobi Securities Exchange, the world’s third-best performing equities market this year, will begin online trading in the fourth quarter as it tries to enable more people to have access to the bourse.
The value of trades on the Kenyan exchange jumped 77 percent in the year to May 14 from the same period in 2012, figures from the bourse show. The benchmark NSE All Share index rose 34 percent this year and the market is valued at 1.7 trillion shillings ($20 billion), according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Colombia aims to ‘internationalize’ bourse


Colombia aims to “internationalize” its capital markets further in the coming years, attracting more foreign companies to its stock market and bring in overseas investors seeking to tap into higher yielding emerging markets, the head of the stock exchange said on Monday.

The Andean nation, which currently has five international companies listed on its stock exchange, is seeking to bring at least two more overseas offerings next year to trade alongside Mexico’s Cemex and Canada’s Pacific Rubiales on Bogota’s stock exchange, Juan Pablo Cordoba said at the Reuters Latin America Investment Summit.


Equinix Strengthens NYSE Technologies’ Expansion in Hong Kong and Tokyo

Fort Mills Times

Equinix, Inc. (Nasdaq: EQIX), the global interconnection and data center company, today announced that NYSE Technologies, the commercial technology unit of NYSE Euronext (NYX), has extended its global trading network into Equinix’s International Business Exchange (IBX®) data centers in Hong Kong and Tokyo. The extension of NYSE Technologies’ Secure Financial Transaction Infrastructure (SFTI®) will allow current and prospective customers within these facilities to directly connect from Hong Kong and Tokyo to services offered by NYSE Technologies and access a range of financial markets, market data and post-trade services.


CME Group: To Launch Palm Oil Swaps Contract on June 3

Fox Business

CME Group Inc. (CME), the world’s largest futures market operator, said Monday that it would launch over-the-counter calendar palm oil swaps, subject to regulatory clearance, on June 3.
The contract will be denominated in U.S. dollars, listed with the Chicago Board of Trade and based on crude palm oil futures prices on Bursa Malaysia Derivatives.

Borsa Italiana Launches Single Stock Dividend Futures On IDEM

IDEM, the equity derivatives market of Borsa Italiana, has today broadened its offering, launching new futures on the dividends of single European blue-chip stocks.
The new product has been launched in response to investors demand for trading the expected dividends of 23 major listed European issuers.


‘Crowdfunding’ becomes new source for startups

The Topeka Metro News

The Internet is profoundly democratic, lowercase “d.” Anyone with computer access can publish a book, hawk his collection of vintage duck decoys, provide advice on holistic healing.
Crowdfunding, enabled by the Internet, promises as profound a shift: Anyone can become a venture capitalist and anyone can solicit those would-be capitalists to support his startup dreams.
Crowdfunding competes with traditional sources of startup funding, “the keepers of the treasure” as Thom Ruhe of Kansas City’s Kauffman Foundation calls them.

Crowdfunding Platform for Journalists ‘Vourno’ Launches Today

Journalism, as an industry, has gone through difficult times since publications moved online.
Ad revenues are down and local newspapers are closing, leaving many reporters unemployed. Crowdfunding has been brought up as a potential solution, and individual campaigns have shown that the new way of fundraising can, indeed, support journalism.
Consider, for example, Planet Money’s recent Kickstarter campaign that raised nearly $600,000 from over 20,000 backers. Or, the Dutch news startup ‘De Correspondent’ that raised $1.3 million before publishing a single article. On a smaller scale, Homicide Watch D.C., raised over $45,000 for a crime reporting lab.

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