Economic Gloom May Be Good News for Stock Pickers (Bloomberg)
Managers of the PruLev Global Macro Fund, which has beaten all industry peers since its inception four years ago, says the gloomy global economy may be a boon for stock investors. Central banks will be forced to add to monetary stimulus to keep economies humming, providing a boost to developed-market stocks, said Norman Tang, who runs the fund with Deputy Fund Manager August Li. Among the investment opportunities that they find attractive are the Russell 2000 Index of small-cap shares in the U.S., which will benefit from low interest rates while showing less correlation with global stocks, according to Tang and Li.
Singapore Lawyers Warn of 1998-Like Pain as Debt Defaults Spread (Bloomberg)
Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP, Southeast Asia’s largest law firm, reckons the region’s rising bond defaults will inflict as much pain on creditors as the financial crises of 2008 and 1998.
Yahoo lines up advisers to help fend off activist investor (NYP)
Yahoo’s board has tapped Innisfree M&A — a so-called proxy solicitor firm that specializes in recruiting investor support in board contests — as it girds for a possible battle with Jeff Smith’s Starboard Value, sources said. The New York hedge fund, which owns 0.75 percent of Yahoo’s shares, has been agitating for a sale. In addition to Innisfree, Yahoo has quietly tapped Evercore Partners, an investment bank with a strong practice in defending companies against activists, according to sources close to the situation.
Zenefits Once Told Employees: No Sex in Stairwells (WSJ)
The email, reviewed by The Wall Street Journal, read in part: “It has been brought to our attention by building management and Security that the stairwells are being used inappropriately...Cigarettes, plastic cups filled with beer, and several used condoms were found in the stairwell. Yes, you read that right. Do not use the stairwells to smoke, drink, eat, or have sex. Please respect building and company policy and use common sense...” In a series of memos to staff this month, [new CEO David] Sacks said it is important to cultivate a more mature work atmosphere befitting a company in the highly regulated health-insurance industry. In a note to staff on Wednesday instituting a new alcohol policy, Mr. Sacks said “it is too difficult to define and parse what is ‘appropriate’ versus ‘inappropriate’ drinking in the office.”
Cheesy garlic knots spark brawl at Florida pizzeria (AP)
A brawl broke out at a Florida pizzeria after an order of garlic knots arrived with cheese on top. A Flagler County police report says 25-year-old Jessica Conti demanded her money back late Friday and was angered when the clerk put her money on the counter in what Conti considered a disrespectful manner. The Daytona Beach News-Journal reports three men then stormed into Palm Coast Pizza and knocked a fax machine and cash register off a counter. They also threw food and pizza boxes.
JPMorgan's `London Whale' Surfaces to Say '12 Loss Not His Fault (Bloomberg)
Bruno Iksil, who isn’t among former colleagues being prosecuted and has agreed to assist U.S. authorities in their cases, wrote in a letter sent to Bloomberg that he was “instructed repeatedly” by managers in the chief investment office, or CIO, to execute the strategy that went awry. He said he objects to the whale nickname and his association with the scandal. “Publicity surrounding the losses sustained by the CIO of JPMorgan typically refers to ‘the London Whale’ in terms that imply that one person was responsible for the trades at issue,” he wrote. “In fact the losses suffered by the CIO were not the actions of one person acting in an unauthorized manner. My role was to execute a trading strategy that had been initiated, approved, mandated and monitored by the CIO’s senior management.”
Smart beta ‘could go horribly wrong’ (FT)
Rob Arnott, chairman and chief executive of Research Affiliates, the US company that developed some of the world's first smart beta indices, has warned that the soaring popularity of these strategies is likely to lead to a severe fall in investment performance. "In the next three to five years, I expect [some smart beta investors] will end up very disappointed," he said.
Mark Zuckerberg Backs Apple in Its Refusal to Unlock iPhone (Dealbook)
Speaking at the Mobile World Congress, an annual tech and telecommunications conference here, Mr. Zuckerberg said that Facebook would play its part in the fight against global terrorism, but that weakening the digital security of technology companies was a bad idea.
Girl scout sells cookies outside Portland pot shop: 'It's not against the rules' (KATU)
A Girl Scout is selling boxes of cookies outside of a Portland pot shop Saturday, hoping to raise money for a summer trip to horse camp. She was selling under the supervision of her aunt, who said they came up with the idea of selling outside Foster Buds Marijuana Dispensary. The aunt said they had several customers within minutes of setting up their table. "The Girl Scouts organization said they don't condone this, but it's not against the rules," she said.