Popularized in films like Limitless, legal smart drugs called Nootropics are becoming more and more prevalent in board rooms and on Wall Street.Keep reading »
Deutsche Bank Plans to Raise $11 Billion (WSJ)
The German lender will issue a total of 360 million new shares, the person said. The Qatari royal family has agreed to buy 60 million of the shares, valued at €1.75 billion, via its investment vehicle Paramount Holdings. The remaining €6.25 billion will be sold to existing investors via a so-called rights offering, the person said.
Former SocGen Trader Returns to France to Face Jail (WSJ)
Former Société Générale trader Jérôme Kerviel ended a monthslong hike through Italy on Sunday by walking across the French border, where police immediately whisked him off to prison to serve a three-year sentence for making billions in unauthorized trades. The final leg of the former trader’s journey capped what he has described as a pilgrimage of “protest against the tyranny” of financial markets. Mr. Kerviel began the trip with a brief meeting with Pope Francis in Vatican City, drawing television cameras and journalists as he made his way up the Italian peninsula with a backpack slung over his shoulder. “I’m respecting the decision of my country,” Mr. Kerviel told a clutch of TV cameras moments before police placed him in an unmarked car and drove off.
Facebook working on video app to take on Snapchat (FT)
Facebook has been working for several months on the app, known internally as Slingshot, with a simple and speedy user interface, said people familiar with its plans. Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief, has been overseeing the top-secret project after failing to woo Snapchat’s creators Evan Spiegel and Bobby Murphy with a $3 billion takeover offer late last year.
Lesser role for Fannie, Freddie not opposed: Regulator (Reuters)
Watt said last week, in his first public speech since taking office, that he did not want to shrink Fannie and Freddie’s footprint, marking a sharp departure from his predecessor. “It’s not that I’m opposed to it and we will certainly allow it to happen,” he told C-SPAN’s “Newsmakers” program, when asked about the prospect of shrinking the lenders’ activities. “But if the private sector is not ready to step into the space, and you shrink what Fannie and Freddie are doing, you do damage to housing finance in this country and that does damage to the economy and that does damage to the possibility of affordable housing and home ownership.”
How Barry Rosenstein rose from Asher Edelman underling to activist leader (Barron’s)
Rosenstein’s operating style isn’t as in-your-face as some of his peers — at least not publicly. “If Carl Icahn is coming at it with a hammer, Barry has velvet gloves on,” says an executive at a fund-of-funds firm that invests in Jana. Says Rosenstein: “I always say to the CEO, ‘You could take our ideas and make them your own and be the change agent. The alternative is you could fight us, but you’re going to end up in the same place anyway.’ ”
Fed’s Rate-Change System Up for Revamp (WSJ)
The Fed’s old system for moving interest rates up or down looks increasingly unsuited for the postcrisis financial system, so officials are rewriting their strategy for replacing it. But first they need to resolve big questions with implications for $2.6 trillion that banks have parked at the Fed, trillions sitting in money-market mutual funds and trillions more at stake in derivatives contracts.
British man spends $16G to turn spare bedroom into a replica Boeing 737 cockpit (NYDN)
The homemade flight simulator allows Richard Hutchinson to “take-off” from any airport in the world and the middle-aged Brit regularly “visits” exotic locations. He told The Mirror: “The conditions are about 99% realistic. I have never flown a plane before but I think if I needed to, I could land a 737.”
AT&T to Buy DirecTV for $48.5 Billion in Move to Expand Clout (Dealbook)
Under the agreement’s terms, AT&T will pay $95 a share in stock and cash, roughly 10 percent above DirecTV’s closing stock price on Friday and about 30 percent higher than where its shares were trading before word of a potential transaction began to emerge. Including the assumption of DirecTV’s debt, the deal is valued at about $67.1 billion. Existing DirecTV shareholders would own 15 percent to 16 percent of the combined company after closing, which is expected in a year’s time.
Border Woes Go Deeper at Citigroup (WSJ)
Citigroup last year quietly ousted two top executives at its Banamex USA unit after regulators raised concerns about that bank’s oversight of money transfers across the U.S.-Mexico border, according to people familiar with the matter. The firings highlight another regulatory issue for Citigroup as it grapples with recent revelations of alleged fraud in a separate Banamex division in Mexico. On Wednesday, Citigroup said it had fired a total of 12 employees at Banamex in Mexico over the alleged fraud involving a local oil-services company. Before that issue came to light, Citigroup placed Banamex USA executives Salvador Villar and Francisco Moreno on administrative leave in March 2013, then fired them later that year, according to the people familiar with the matter. Mr. Villar had been CEO of Banamex USA, and Mr. Moreno was his head of operations. Their firings hadn’t been reported publicly.
Chocolate Tycoon Vies in Vote to Lead Ukraine Back From Brink (WSJ)
It remains unclear whether the Chocolate King—Mr. Poroshenko’s nickname because of the Roshen confectionary empire he owns—can surpass the 50% threshold of votes required on Sunday to prevent a runoff against his rival and second-place candidate, former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.
Thai Bonds Are Best in Region as Political Unrest Hurts Economy (Bloomberg)
Thai bonds have rallied even as overseas investors, which hold around 16 percent of the debt, pulled $646 million from the securities this month, exchange data show. “We see strong demand from domestic investors,” Pareena Phuangsiri, an analyst at Kasikornbank Pcl in Bangkok, said in a May 15 phone interview. “The political unrest weighs on the economy, and when the economy is weak you prefer bonds.”
Alligator helps catch suspected car thief in Florida (UPI)
Port St. Lucie police were on the lookout for a man they suspected had taken at least five cars from parking lots at Walmart, Sam’s Club and Publix. Officers eventually spotted Calvin Rodriguez in a Honda Civic and tried to stop him. Unfortunately, the car “began driving at a high rate of speed and was lost sight of.” That’s when the alligator stepped in. Police were able to catch up with Rodriguez when he hit the alligator and was stopped. “The Honda was later discovered to have crashed into an alligator, causing it to crash into a median,” according to a police report. “This shows that Calvin was in control of the Honda that struck the alligator and the median.” Rodriguez is charged with five counts of grand theft auto but is not facing animal cruelty charges for hitting the alligator.