Court denies hedge fund investors in Fannie and Freddie case (NYP)
A federal appeals court on Tuesday again slapped down hedge fund investors in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — all but denying one more opportunity for the wealthy investors to cash in on a long-held investment. The ruling is important as Fannie has returned to the Treasury Department $68 billion more than the taxpayer bailout. Shareholders are trying to get their hands on that cash. Bill Ackman’s Pershing Square, also a Fannie and Freddie shareholder, filed an amicus brief after Perry Capital appealed the original ruling in 2015.
Confident Snap brushes off concerns on second day of IPO roadshow (Reuters)
Many investors remained unconvinced by Snap's claim that it is more valuable than Facebook Inc (FB.O) based on revenue at the time of its IPO in 2012. Still, they acknowledged that Snap has built momentum as this year's biggest technology IPO and the darling of millennials. "They could have been in their underwear up there and no one would have cared," said one investor who attended the roadshow on Tuesday.
The misguided logic of a robot income tax (FT)
A call for robot income tax is really just a call for more corporation tax and/or a wealth tax. It seems strange for Gates to forget this argument just because the nature of the capital investment is now anthropomorphised. If investment in machinery is to be deemed productive and prosperity boosting, why should investment in robotic machinery or AI be any different? Either both are good for prosperity or none of them are? Either the investment increases productivity or it does not? And what constitutes a robot anyway?
Money Shouldn't Choose the Next Fed Chair (BBG View)
There's nothing inherently wrong with financial success, and inside knowledge can have its advantages. That said, replacing Yellen with someone whose primary qualification is a fortune made on Wall Street would be a huge mistake. The problem is one of perception: Outsiders would see every Fed decision -- in terms of financial regulation, monetary policy or crisis management -- as being made in the interests of big finance. This would render the Fed politically vulnerable at a time when its independence, crucial to its ability to manage the economy, is already under attack. Of course, that may be exactly what Trump wants. In that case, prepare for some chaos in the economy and financial markets.
Lloyds Is Laughing in the Face of Brexit (BBG)
A year ago, only the most rabid of Brexiteers would have believed that, with Britain poised to trigger its exit from the European Union, the country's biggest mortgage lender would be in profit, increasing dividends, boosting capital and promising an even better performance in 2017. Yet here we are.
Kenneth Arrow, Nobel-Winning Economist Whose Influence Spanned Decades, Dies at 95 (NYT)
The theorist who in the 1950s proved that perfectly competitive markets could exist as a matter of mathematical logic spent much of the rest of his career showing how far short of perfection actual markets fall.
Facebook tests shortcut buttons to rivals like Snapchat and Twitter (NextWeb)
Mark Zuckerberg published an epic manifesto yesterday that shifted Facebook’s mission from simply connecting friends and family, towards “developing the social infrastructure for community.” Perhaps that means becoming a little friendlier to the different ways people communicate, too.
Here's where jobs will be lost when robots drive trucks (Axios)
A push by companies like Uber to automate heavy trucks through a combination of artificial intelligence and robotics raises questions for millions of drivers brought into the profession by the promise of a steady job. And if you think this is a niche problem, think again. The impact of self-driving trucks would be felt in communities around the country — especially Trump country.
The hours-long rant then took another strange turn when Jameson — who converted from Catholicism to Judaism after her engagement to Israeli jeweler Lior Bitton — defended the Klu Klux Klan. “Do the klu klux klan follow a religion that orders the death of apostates? When was the last time we saw a klan member blow up infidels?,” she tweeted.