Yellen Doesn’t Rule Out Negative Rates in Letter to Congressman (Bloomberg)
In written responses Thursday to questions from Representative Brad Sherman, Yellen said that “while I would not completely rule out the use of negative interest rates in some future very adverse scenario, policy makers would need to consider a wide range of issues before employing this tool in the United States, including the potential for unintended consequences.”
Gundlach sees 'some rebellion' from Fed hawks (Reuters)
Jeffrey Gundlach, the chief executive of DoubleLine Capital, said on an investor webcast on Thursday that the Federal Reserve will be challenged to raise interest rates this year. Fed officials seem to be in disagreement about the timing and number of rate hikes in 2016, Gundlach, who runs $95 billion at Los Angeles-based DoubleLine, said. There's "some (hawkish) rebellion showing up at the Fed," Gundlach said. Thursday, Kansas City Fed President Esther George said the Fed is keeping interest rates too low and risks encouraging companies to take on excessive amounts of debt.
Clinton Wants Bankers Off Regional Fed Boards (WSJ)
Mrs. Clinton’s campaign said, if elected, she would appoint officials who will carry out “unwavering oversight” of the financial sector and “defend” both sides of the central bank’s inflation and employment mandates. The campaign also said “commonsense reforms—like getting bankers off the boards of regional Federal Reserve banks—are long overdue.”
Bets on Fannie and Freddie Get Help From Lobbyists (WSJ)
A group of hedge funds, including Paulson & Co. and Perry Capital LLC, is helping to finance a lobbying campaign to lift government controls on what happens with the mortgage giants’ profits. Those funds and others bought millions of shares of the companies’ preferred and common stock in hopes of cashing in as they regained their independence following a $187.5 billion taxpayer bailout. But they have been stymied by government policy that for the past four years has sent nearly all the companies’ profits to the U.S. Treasury. The lobbying effort aims to end that profit sweep and build up Fannie and Freddie’s capital so that they can one day be released from government control. Even building capital would likely send the companies’ shares soaring.
Times Square ‘Hug Guy’ punches Canadian tourist, 22, because she didn't give him a tip (NYDN)
“Free Hugs Guy” Jermaine Himmelstein socked the woman in the right eye following an 11 a.m. clash outside the T-Mobile store on Broadway near W. 45th St. The young woman and a friend were walking through Times Square when Himmelstein approached, holding a sign reading “FREE HUGS.” Himmelstein embraced one of the women and took a photo, but began throwing fists when they wouldn’t fork over any loot, cops said. He punched his victim, identified by police sources as Sophie Violene Dauvois, and ran off down Seventh Ave...NYPD Chief of Department James O’Neill said Himmelstein “is no stranger” to the department. He’s been arrested 16 times since 2012. He was busted for tossing a can of soda at a woman who refused to hug him in Washington Square Park in 2013. The can bruised her face. He was also accused of punching a woman in the face on the Coney Island boardwalk last year
SunEdison Yieldco Hit With Default Notice Over Late Financials (Bloomberg)
A unit of TerraForm Global Inc. has 90 days to issue its delinquent annual report or it could face demands to pay off hundreds of millions in debt six years early, partly because bankrupt parent SunEdison Inc. hasn’t filed its own financial statement.
Etsy Names Chief Operating Officer (WSJ)
The Brooklyn, N.Y., company, which has been pushing to expand abroad, said Thursday that Linda Kozlowski would join Etsy as operating chief on May 16. Ms. Kozlowski most recently worked at startup Evernote as chief operating officer and vice president of world-wide operations. The company hasn’t had a chief operating officer since going public last year.
Next Theranos? Ex-employee claims wireless charging start-up uBeam is a sham: Report (CNBC)
The company — launched in 2011 while its founder was a student at the University of Pennsylvania — says it has created a device that can wirelessly charge nearby devices, like mobile phones and laptops, using ultrasound waves. Its technology has been written about by The New York Times, Fortune and TechCrunch, among other media outlets. This week, however, a blogger claiming to be uBeam's former vice president of engineering published a series of posts casting doubts on the company's product. The blogger, TechCrunch reported, said uBeam has yet to hold a public demonstration of its product because it does not work...Asked to respond to the blogger's allegations, uBeam CEO and founder Meredith Perry told CNBC that the company is "heads down" developing its wireless charging technology.
Russian medieval reenactor takes out drone with spear throw (UPI)
A Russian medieval festival reenactor showed off his spear-throwing skills by knocking a camera drone out of the sky with his weapon. Footage posted to YouTube by drone owner Gennady Tolcheev shows an aerial view of the Rusborg medieval festival in the Lipetsk region as reenactors are preparing to recreate the "battle for the bridge." A costumed participant can be seen moving away from his comrades before throwing his spear, which scores a direct hit and knocks the drone out of the air...Social media users criticized the drone's presence at the event, which even bans participants from wearing modern underwear, but Tolcheev said organizers gave permission for the quadcopter to film.