Opening Bell: 12.8.16

Marc Andreessen in hot water; Glencore a hot commodity; canine football instruction; and more.
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(Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

Facebook's Investors Criticize Marc Andreessen for Conflict of Interest (BBG)

When the time came for a committee to ask Zuckerberg questions on a conference call, Andreessen warned the Facebook founder about what he would be asked before directors posed the questions. While the committee grilled Zuckerberg about why he wanted a special class of stock, Andreessen texted the CEO to explain which of his arguments weren't working and why. During one call, Andreessen gave Zuckerberg live updates, both negative ("This line of argument is not helping. ☺") and positive ("NOW WE'RE COOKING WITH GAS").

The Duo Who Dethroned Pimco to Become Kings of the Bond Market (WSJ)

Laird Landmann and Tad Rivelle left Pacific Investment Management Co. in 1994 to escape Bill Gross, the firm’s domineering investment head. Now their firm, Los-Angeles based TCW Group Inc., has dethroned Pimco as the manager of the largest actively managed bond fund in the world.

Trump Win Has Goldman Sachs Rising After “Lost Decade” (NYP)

Trump’s election has juiced Blankfein’s bank. In 2016 through Nov. 8, the bank’s shares were up less than 1 percent. Since Nov. 8, they have risen 29.5 percent. “It’s like the opposite of the perfect storm we had at the beginning of the year,” Marty Mosby, bank analyst at Vining Sparks, told The Post.

Pimco: The World’s Got A New ‘Risk Free Asset’ (FT)

US bond giant Pimco has declared inflation-linked US bonds, known as TIPS, as a “risk free asset” in an era of rising consumer prices. Following a sharp sell-off in long-dated Treasuries in the last month, with 30-year yields climbing above 3 per cent, Pimco’s strategists think higher inflation is “almost a certainty” as president-elect Trump plans to unleash a wave of expansionary government spending.

Glencore Dealmaking King Returns With Wager on Oil and Putin (BBG)

A year ago Ivan Glasenberg was fighting to save his company from short sellers. Today, the CEO of Glencore Plc is back to doing what made his reputation: cutting deals that shake up global commodity markets. Making a big bet on both the battered oil industry and Vladimir Putin’s Russia, Glencore and Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund joined forces to buy an $11 billion stake in Rosneft PJSC, the Kremlin-run oil producer that pumps more crude than Exxon Mobil Corp.

Flotek: Some New Research (Bronte Capital)

Flotek should be familiar to readers of this blog. In plain english Flotek makes a chemical mix which makes sand-water mixes slippery so you can get more sand into fractures when you fracture an oil and gas reservoir. Their chemical mix is a surfactant. The product is a commodity. However Flotek sell their product as somehow special. The claim: their surfactant is a "complex nano-fluid", but it is really a mix of d-limonene (the oil from orange peel) and isopropyl alcohol.

Bank of New York Lost Ability to Process Payments for 19 Hours (WSJ)

The outage affecting BNY Mellon and its clients started around 2:30 p.m. EST Sunday and was resolved by 9:51 a.m. Monday, according to a memo obtained by The Wall Street Journal that was dispatched by the bank to its clients late Tuesday. It took BNY until Monday afternoon to catch up, and the matter is being scrutinized inside the bank because some payments failed to meet their cutoff times and had to be completed Tuesday instead.

Deutsche Bank Records Said to Show Silver Rigging at Other Banks (BBG)

Eight months after Deutsche Bank AG settled a lawsuit claiming it manipulated gold and silver prices, documents it disclosed as part of the accord provide “smoking gun” proof that UBS Group AG, HSBC Holdings Plc, Bank of Nova Scotia and other firms rigged the silver market, plaintiffs claim.

Investing In 90 Percent Of Hedge Funds Isn’t Worth It (NYP)

“Ninety percent of hedge funds are not worth their fees,” Chris Solarz, managing director of New York hedge fund advisory firm Cliffwater, said at an investor conference on Wednesday. Those are some harsh words, but the data backs Solarz. While the S&P 500 index gained 7.6 percent through Nov. 30, the broader hedge fund industry was up a paltry 4.6 percent, net of fees.

JPMorgan Expects Only Two Fed Hikes In 2017; Says Trump’s Stimulus Will Be Small (NYP)

"We are mindful that potentially protectionist trade policies could spark retaliatory measures by other countries that could leave everyone worse off," JP Morgan said. Furthermore, JP Morgan added in the report that the U.S. Congress will only approve some of the tax incentives and spending plans and, thus, such economic incentives should not lift the economy in a significant way before 2018.

Let This Dog Teach You How To Execute A Proper Tackle (VICE)

As you watch this video of a big fluffy dog making an open-field tackle on an elementary schooler, I encourage you to watch not as a fan of football or dogs, but as an evaluator. I understand this is not easy, because we all have our various biases in favor of football and big fluffy dogs, and because those biases can and invariably do color the way we watch sports.

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