Gold Traders Are Betting on a Bigger Comeback (Bloomberg)
“Traders feel like there’s more weakness ahead for this economy, and gold is the place to be positioned,” Fain Shaffer, the president of Infinity Trading Corp. in Indianapolis, said in a telephone interview. The gains for bullish options show that “we may be seeing a change in this market,” he said.
Winning Bets Become Losers (WSJ)
Some of the hottest trades on Wall Street have gone ice-cold. Bets on financial shares and the technology sector have cost investors dearly, as have those against the Japanese yen and wagers on the U.S. dollar. Part of the reason the trades aren’t working: Hedge funds are losing their faith, as they turn nervous about Chinese growth and the impact of tumbling oil prices. Many hedge funds that focus on buying and selling stocks, as well as those that bet on various corporate events, reduced their exposure to markets in the first half of January, in particular, says David Smith, chief investment officer at London-based GAM, which invests about $25 billion in hedge funds.
Verizon Enlists AOL CEO Armstrong to Explore Yahoo Deal (Bloomberg)
Verizon Communications Inc. has given Tim Armstrong, chief executive officer of its AOL unit, a leading role in exploring a possible bid for Yahoo! Inc. assets, according to a person with knowledge of the situation. Late last week, and as far back as December, Verizon has said “yes” when asked whether it was interested in purchasing some or all of the struggling company.
A Beyonce mention sends Red Lobster sales higher (CNBC)
Beyonce's newest song "Formation" is doing more than racking up viral views on YouTube. It's also increasing traffic and sales at Red Lobster. The music video, suddenly posted on Saturday, already has more than 13.3 million views on the video platform and features a series of off-color lyrics about enjoying the popular seafood restaurant. Weekend sales at Red Lobster saw a significant boost from "Queen Bey," spiking 33 percent on Sunday over last year, company brass said.
World's most expensive roses and bouquet will set you back £9k this Valentine's Day (Mirror)
For the price of a second hand Mercedes SL 500 , a luxury round the world cruise or two conservatory extensions, these flowers could be yours. 1,000 stems will set you back £9k, but you can go for a cheaper model - 150 are £2,000, 50 are £750 and 24 cost £500. The red roses were grown 2,800 metres above sea level in the mountain ranges of Ecuador, near a small town called Machachi in the Andes.
Fed May Lack Legal Authority for Negative Rates: 2010 Memo (Bloomberg)
The document, which is dated Aug. 5, 2010, and was publicly released on Jan. 29, suggests the law that authorized the Fed to pay interest on excess reserves, or IOER, may not grant it the authority to charge interest. That could constrain the central bank’s ability to take interest rates below zero, though it might be able to find a work-around.
European banks face major cash crunch (CNBC)
More than a dozen European banks facing exposure in excess of $100 billion to energy sector loans may need to sell assets to bolster against future losses. Potential buyers of those assets include a mix of large private equity firms, a select group of pension investors, U.S. banks and hedge funds. Due to the recent decline in major European banks' shares and increasing scrutiny over the bad loans the banks hold, investors are starting to gravitate toward the idea of getting actively involved in European banking names.
Gross's Investors Pull $14.8 Million From Janus Fund in January (Bloomberg)
The $1.3 billion fund, which invests in fixed-income securities and derivatives based on global macroeconomic trends, is up 0.28 percent this year through Feb. 5, ranking in the top 8 percent of its peers, according to Morningstar Inc.
Trump’s Son Says Waterboarding ‘No Different’ Than ‘What Happens in Frat Houses Every Day’ (Mediaite)
Greta Van Susteren asked Eric Trump to elaborate on his father’s assertion that he would do worse than waterboarding. He explained: "You see these terrorists that are flying planes into buildings, right? You see our cities getting shot up in California. You see Paris getting shot up. And then somebody complains when a terrorist gets waterboarded, which quite frankly is no different than what happens on college campuses and frat houses every day."