Putin Billionaire Allies Move Assets to Sons Amid U.S. Sanctions (Bloomberg)
Arkady Rotenberg, Putin’s boyhood friend and judo partner, divested his stake in OAO Mostotrest, Russia’s largest builder of roads and bridges, and his son Igor now holds 26 percent, according to company. He also transfered his stake in TPS Real Estate Holding, which builds shopping malls in Moscow and Sochi to Igor, according to his press office. The U.S. and European Union have targeted Russians in Putin’s inner circle, as part of rolling sanctions against individuals, companies and the financial, energy and defense industries, saying they seek to defend Ukraine’s territorial integrity amid a separatist insurgency in the east. “They are obviously seeking to bypass the potential impact of sanctions,” said Igor Bunin, head of Moscow-based Center for Political Technologies. “Going after his enemies, even Joseph Stalin admitted that children aren’t responsible for their parents. Let’s see how the West would address this.”
Mud runs as new way to entertain on Wall Street (NetNet)
Firms are looking for more creative ways beyond traditional dinners to entertain clients and prospective business partners. It's now becoming about sweat, stamina and overcoming obstacles at activities such as spinning, CrossFit and even races like Tough Mudders. Stephanie Cadet, a sales rep at investment bank CLSA, has scheduled events for clients at SoulCycle, the boutique indoor cycling chain. She has another one coming up later this month. "There are definitely many more options now—especially in the past couple of years. They have sort of flourished," Cadet said...After the classes, [Jay Galuzzo] sees many business partners and their clients discussing work in the facility's common area which is stocked with fresh fruit and water. "You take a class and it's an icebreaker with the client," said Galuzzo, who doesn't believe a hard, sweaty workout would be a turn-off to doing business.
Who does this Swiss banker have the goods on? Stay tuned (CNBC)
The highest-ranking Swiss banker ever to be captured by U.S. authorities goes on trial Tuesday in federal court in Florida on charges of helping wealthy Americans evade millions in taxes. Raoul Weil, 54, was indicted in 2008, but continued to live and work in Switzerland, which does not extradite its citizens in tax cases. He was declared a fugitive by the United States in 2009. It wasn't until last year, when Weil made the mistake of traveling to Italy for a vacation with his wife, that authorities were able to catch him...His indictment was a watershed moment in the effort by the United States to pierce the veil of Swiss bank secrecy: The United States alleged UBS' so-called "cross border" business had approximately 20,000 American clients with assets hidden from the IRS totaling as much as $20 billion. In 2009, UBS agreed to pay a $780 million fine and turn over the names of thousands of clients.
Ireland Considers Closing Corporate-Tax Loophole (WSJ)
Ireland is expected on Tuesday to announce changes to its tax code that could eventually close one of the world’s most famous corporate-tax loopholes, dubbed the Double Irish, after heavy pressure from governments and the European Union, tax experts say...The Double Irish uses a twist in Irish laws to funnel royalty payments for intellectual property from one Irish-registered subsidiary to another that resides for tax purposes in a country with no corporate income taxes. It is often paired with a related tax structure that planners call the “Dutch Sandwich,” which uses a Netherlands-based structure to avoid certain taxes. The Double Irish structure allows companies to legally shift billions of euros in profit to tax havens each year.
Deutsche Bank Legal Costs May Hit $8.8 Billion: Spiegel (Bloomberg)
Deutsche Bank's provisions for potential legal costs could rise to as much as 7 billion euros ($8.8 billion), Spiegel reported, citing people close to Germany’s largest bank that it didn’t identify. That would be 30 percent more than what Deutsche Bank has accounted for so far. The Frankfurt-based lender said on July 29 second-quarter reserves for litigation expenses increased 450 million euros from the first quarter to 2.2 billion euros, while contingent liabilities rose to 3.2 billion euros to reflect potential costs from regulatory investigations. It said it couldn’t predict such costs for the rest of the year. The company’s legal costs, which totaled 3 billion euros last year, are hampering efforts to build capital and increase returns for investors. Deutsche Bank has yet to resolve probes into its role in industrywide attempts to manipulate benchmark interest rates and currency markets and faces lawsuits alleging it didn’t make adequate disclosure of U.S. mortgage-backed securities.
Man With Tom Brady Helmet Tattoo Arrested For Narcotics (HP)
Thompson, 46, was busted Sept. 10 for possession of Spice, the synthetic marijuana, according to The Smoking Gun. The suspect told police that he purchased the "Master Kush" Spice “from a black male for $15” at a downtown park. He also told the cops he did not know the drug was illegal in Florida, claiming it was still legal in his home state of New Hampshire, from where he had moved just three weeks prior. New Hampshire actually banned the sale of synthetic marijuana in 2012, according to UnionLeader.com. Thompson was charged with felony drug possession and trespassing. He is being held at the Pinellas County jail in lieu of $1500 bond, the New York Daily News reports. The jailers took the extra step of taking four separate booking photos of Thompson so that his tattoos could be memorialized for possible future identification purposes. The tat includes Brady's number, 12, an American flag and the NFL logo and even a small green dot to indicate a helmet that, if real, would have a headset allowing Brady to hear plays from his coaches. Thompson's tattoo goes further: There's a recreation of the Vince Lombardi Super Bowl trophy and ink-replicas of the signatures of Wes Welker, Rob Gronkowski and Randy Moss tattooed across the dome, NESN.com reports. Thompson got the tattoo in January, 2008, after the Patriots finished the regular season undefeated. “It’s something that popped in my head," he told WMUR TV at the time. "I was watching the game, and I said, ‘I want my head to look like Tom Brady’s helmet.’"
Ackman Fund Stumbles In Amsterdam Trading Debut (Dealbook)
A fund by the activist investor William A. Ackman stumbled in its trading debut in Amsterdam on Monday. The fund, Pershing Square Holdings, raised more than $3 billion through its initial public offering this month and through investments by existing investors in other Ackman funds. The offering price was $25 a share, valuing the fund at $6.2 billion. But the stock dropped 8 percent to $23.01 in early trading on Monday.
Peter Thiel: We are in a government bubble of massive size (CNBC)
The bond market is the most distorted, Peter Thiel told CNBC's Squawk on the Street on Monday. He added that "tech investors always overrate growth and always underrate durability. You can measure growth but you can't measure durability." To him, Alibaba is just a bet on Chinese politics. Last month, Silicon Valley venture capitalist Peter Thiel criticized Twitter in a CNBC interview, saying it's a "horribly mismanaged company."
Halloween candy sales expected to top $2.5B (NYP)
New York candy makers are gearing up for a bumper Halloween season, expected to reach $2.5 billion in confectionery sales across the US. A survey by the National Confectioners Association (NCA), the trade group representing the $34 billion industry, found chocolate is the clear winner as favorite Halloween candy, followed closely by candy corn.
Financial Titans Blast AIGA At Trial (NYP)
Maurice Greenberg’s blockbuster week turned into a flop. For five days, three of the most powerful figures of the 2008 financial crisis were called to defend themselves for allegedly demanding “extortionate” terms on the $185 billion bailout of failing insurer AIG. Greenberg’s Starr International, a large AIG shareholder, claims the US government overstepped its authority by proposing a relatively high interest rate on the loans — and by taking about 90 percent ownership of the company through voting shares in return. Starr is seeking to claw back as much as $40 billion. But the three star witnesses — former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, ex-Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson, and former Federal Reserve Bank of New York President Timothy Geithner — refuted those claims during their more than 26 hours of testimony at the Federal Court of Claims in Washington, DC. Geithner, who was the most involved in setting the bailout, said that the government imposed the relatively harsh terms on the company because of the bad management at the board and to make other companies think twice before asking to borrow from the Fed.
Passenger Indicted In Dispute Over Reclined Airplane Seat (AP)
An airline passenger who became upset after a woman reclined the seat in front of him, causing the pilot to divert the plane, has been indicted on a federal charge of interfering with a flight crew. Edmond Alexandre began to argue with other passengers over the reclined seat on the Aug. 27 flight from Miami to Paris, the U.S. attorney's office said. When a crew member intervened, Alexandre followed him down the aisle and grabbed his arm, it said. Two undercover federal air marshals subdued him, and the American Airlines flight was diverted to Boston. The outburst over the reclined seat was at least the second such incident in the U.S. that week, authorities said. Days earlier, a United Airlines flight diverted to Chicago after two passengers argued over reclining a seat. Alexandre, a 60-year-old Haitian national who lives in Paris, was indicted Thursday. His lawyer, Josh Hanye, said Friday he has serious health conditions including diabetes, which wasn't being properly treated at the time.
Programming Note: We're on an abbreviated, vacation-esque schedule today, which is how Columbus would've wanted it. Opening and closing wraps, with potential check-ins during the day should the urge to reach out and touch you strike. See you back in full-force tomorrow.