Citi: 'We Should All Fear Oilmageddon' (Bloomberg)
Markets are currently in a well-oiled "death spiral," according to Citigroup Inc. analysts led by Jonathan Stubbs. "It appears that four inter-linked phenomena are driving a negative feedback loop in the global economy and across financial markets," the analysts write, citing the resilient U.S. dollar, lower commodities prices, weaker trade and capital flows, and declining emerging market growth.
Warren Buffett's new oil bet nears $1 billion (CNBC)
After three more days of buying, Warren Buffett's Phillips 66 shopping spree is nearing a billion dollars for the year. In a new filing, Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway reveals that on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of this week the company purchased another 1.7 million shares of the energy giant for almost $132 million. Over 15 days of buying since Jan. 4, Berkshire has spent $964 million to add 12.5 million shares to its Phillips 66 stake.
Congress Tweet 'Unfortunate,' Lawyer Says as Shkreli Goes Online (Bloomberg)
When Shkreli left the hearing, “the frustration exploded,” Brafman said in an interview on CNBC, and Shkreli tweeted, “Hard to accept that these imbeciles represent the people in our government.” “It was a regrettable choice of words,” Brafman said. Brafman said Wednesday that Shkreli would no longer give media interviews, but that hasn’t stopped the former drug executive from taking to Twitter and other channels to make his feelings known.
Clinton Accuses Sanders of 'Artful Smear' Over Wall Street Ties (Bloomberg)
Hillary Clinton accused Bernie Sanders of engaging in a “very artful smear” against her by suggesting that she’s been influenced by the millions of dollars in campaign contributions and speaking fees that she’s taken from Wall Street and other industries.
Beezow Doo-Doo Zopittybop-Bop-Bop Arrested (SkyNews)
Beezow Doo-doo Zopittybop-bop-bop is accused of first-degree assault against police officers, along with malicious mischief and malicious harassment. The 34-year-old allegedly attacked officers at Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington state, on Sunday. Prosecutor Mark Thompson referred to the accused in court on Monday by his original name of Jeffrey Drew Wilschke, which he changed in 2011, reports the Tri-City Herald. Zopittybop-bop-bop allegedly fought with police who were called to investigate a report of someone tearing down fliers from a library entrance. According to the Tri-City Herald, the suspect repeatedly tried to grab an officer's gun, bit him on the hand, tried to stab the officer with a pen and swung a handcuff case at his head. He was shot by three different officers with Tasers, but twice managed to rip off the electrical lines and keep running, police say.
ICE chief calls IEX plan ‘un-American’ (FT)
IEX, the upstart stock-dealing venue, is taking an "un-American" approach to slowing down high-speed traders, the owner of the New York Stock Exchange has charged in comments that will further inflame debate over markets. Jeff Sprecher, chief executive of Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) said on an earnings call that IEX's plan to become an exchange is "not fair" because it is in effect seeking an exemption from a federal rule that requires such venues to provide instantaneous price quotes. IEX launched in 2013 as a "dark pool" private training venue and marketed itself as a cure for unequal US markets, where ultra-fast traders buy data feeds from exchanges and exploit market movements.
Julius Baer pair helped US tax dodgers (FT)
Daniela Casadei and Fabio Frazzetto, who were charged in 2011, entered guilty pleas in a Manhattan federal court to charges of defrauding the Internal Revenue Service, evading income taxes and filing false returns. They each face a maximum sentence of five years in prison, and will be sentenced in August. Meanwhile, Julius Baer admitted conspiring with US taxpayer clients to hide up to $4.7bn in assets from the IRS.
Fed's Mester unmoved, says U.S. to overcome 'soft patch' (Reuters)
Cleveland Fed President Loretta Mester said that while the global selloff in stocks and oil markets through January poses risks, she is not about to cut her expectations of continued U.S. economic growth and labor market improvement.
Wisconsin Police Recover Another Load of Stolen Cheese (NBC)
For the second time in a week, police in Wisconsin have recovered a stolen load of cheese worth tens of thousands of dollars. Marshfield Police Lt. Darren Larson said 41,000 pounds of Parmesan cheese worth $90,000 was stolen from a Marshfield distributor Jan. 15. A semi picked up the cheese that day, but it never reached its intended destination in Illinois...Police haven't said whether the cases are connected.