BlackRock’s Fink Says There Are ‘Bubble-Like Markets Again’ (Bloomberg)
“It’s imperative that the Fed begins to taper,” Fink said Tuesday at a panel discussion in Chicago, referring to the central bank’s $85 billion in monthly bond purchases. “We’ve seen real bubble-like markets again. We’ve had a huge increase in the equity market. We’ve seen corporate-debt spreads narrow dramatically.”
Japan Widens Probe Into Mob Loans by Big Banks (Bloomberg)
Japan’s financial regulator plans to inspect the nation’s three largest lenders, widening a probe into credit given to gangsters to include Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc. The inspections are to determine whether their banking units are complying with rules including those meant to curb transactions with criminal organizations, Hiroki Kato, an official at the Financial Services Agency, said by telephone yesterday. The reviews will start Nov. 5, another FSA official said, declining to be identified because of the agency’s policy.
The Most Powerful Person in the Office (WSJ)
If D’Andra Galarza were to come face to face with death, she knows whose life would flash before her eyes: the life of her boss, a president at NBCUniversal Inc. After 10 years as Edward Swindler’s executive assistant, waking up at 4 a.m. to ensure he makes an early morning flight and keeping the office stocked with his favorite snacks—oyster crackers, peppermint Life Savers and Honey Nut Cheerios—Ms. Galarza says she’s under no illusions about whose needs come first. “You work very, very hard…so that they can shine and they can do their best,” she says. “You’re kind of the stage mom.” The schedulers, gatekeepers and caretakers of the corporate world are rarely seen, but they have a profound effect on the daily lives of the executives they serve. They do everything from booking business trips, ordering anniversary gifts and arranging pet care to attending high-level meetings and deciding who can and can’t meet with their boss. The work can be thankless and often comes at a cost to their own personal lives, but these workers wield subtle influence at a company’s highest levels–and no small amount of power…Now, a new networking group aims to emphasize the “executive” in executive assistant, pampering and pumping up these right-hand workers with nightclub parties, spa sessions and Behind Every Leader, a conference series that is coming next month to Newark, N.J. Among the scheduled sessions: “Yoga & Meditation for the Executive Assistant” and a boss’s recounting of how his EA saved the company after superstorm Sandy. Victoria Rabin, the 28-year-old founder of the Executive Assistants Organization and a former assistant at a London hedge fund, says the job deserves some cachet because assisting is an “incredible career” that only a “certain breed” can do…Anikka Fragodt is considered a celebrity in the realm of executive assistants. Until last March, she was Mark Zuckerberg’s right-hand woman. For more than seven years, she planned everything from a toga party for 350 people with 48 hours’ notice to Mr. Zuckerberg’s secret wedding to Priscilla Chan in 2012.
Chocolate Factory, Trade War Victim (NYT)
The output of the sprawling brick factory, formerly known as the Karl Marx chocolate works, has never before been so hard to sell in Russia. Since July, when Russian regulators banned all chocolate, cake, cookie and candy imports from its Ukrainian parent company, Roshen, ostensibly over health concerns, production at the plant here has plummeted 14 percent. “It’s not pleasant at all to be in this situation,” Viacheslav Moskalevskyi, the president of Roshen, Ukraine’s largest confectionery company, said in an interview. The Ukranian chocolate factory shares a problem with many businesses in the countries that lie between the European Union and Russia. It is caught in a no-man’s land for trade, a place increasingly precarious as each side tries to recruit countries into exclusive trade deals. The European Union wants Ukraine and Moldova to sign so-called Association Agreements while Russia wants these nations in its Customs Union.
Sex-Related Injury Not Compensable, Australia Court Rules (Bloomberg)
An Australian government employee who was injured while having sex on a work-related trip doesn’t qualify for workers’ compensation, the nation’s highest court ruled. The High Court of Australia today overturned a federal appeal court ruling that the woman was hurt during a work interlude and entitled to compensation from Comcare, the country’s work safety agency that pays for medical expenses and time missed from work as a result of injury. The woman, whose name can’t be published and who is referred to in court papers as PVYW, was in her late 30s when she sought compensation from Comcare, according to court documents. While engaged in sexual intercourse with an acquaintance, she claimed a glass light fitting above her bed was pulled from its mount and struck her in the face, causing nose, mouth and psychological injuries. The human relations worker at a federal government agency wasn’t encouraged to have sex by her employer and as a result isn’t eligible for work-related compensation, the majority of the High Court said in a summary of the ruling on its website. “The circumstances in which the employee was injured must be connected to an inducement or encouragement by the employer,” the court’s majority said in the summary.
U.S. House passes bill to delay fiduciary rules at SEC, Labor Dept (Reuters)
The U.S. House of Representatives passed a controversial bill on Tuesday that would delay two government regulators from adopting rules requiring stock brokers and retirement account financial advisers to put their customers’ interests ahead of their own. The bill, which was approved in a 254-166 vote, has virtually no chance of becoming law, after the White House late Monday threatened to veto the measure. Its passage, however, marks yet another symbolic effort by Republicans to express their discontent over the sweeping new regulations that stem from the 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform law.
Linkedin revenue soars 56% as membership grows (Reuters)
LinkedIn said it expected between $415 million and $420 million in sales for the final three months, lower than the $438 million expected by analysts polled by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. Its full-year revenue estimates, although revised upward to $1.5 billion, also fell slightly short of Wall Street’s expectations.
BlackBerry Met Facebook About Bid (WSJ)
BlackBerry Ltd. executives flew to California to meet with Facebook Inc. last week to gauge its interest in a potential bid for the struggling smartphone-maker, according to people familiar with the matter. It remains unclear whether Facebook is interested in placing a bid. Spokesmen for both companies declined to comment.
Kim Kardashian is more influential than Michelle Obama and should be on the cover of Vogue, says Kanye West (NYDN)
Kanye West preached his love for his betrothed baby mama during a radio show Tuesday, arguing she’s more influential than Michelle Obama and deserves a turn on the cover of Vogue magazine. “There’s no way Kim Kardashian shouldn’t be on the cover of Vogue. She’s like the most intriguing woman right now. She’s got Barbara Walters calling her like everyday,” he told Ryan Seacrest Tuesday morning. “And collectively, we’re the most influential with clothing. No one is looking at what [President Barack Obama] is wearing,” he said. “Michelle Obama cannot Instagram a pic like what my girl Instagrammed the other day.” He was referring to a photo Kardashian posted to social media a couple weeks ago that showcased her prominent posterior in a revealing white swimsuit after giving birth in June to daughter North…The rapper said he doesn’t care if some people find his comments controversial. “That’s not my concern,” he said. “My concern is doing God’s work, and he’ll work everything else out.”