Tech Founders Want IPO Riches Without Those Pesky Shareholders (WSJ)
A person familiar with the initial public offering said he knows of only one investment fund that could have bought Snap shares but decided not to because of the 90.5% voting stake held by the two co-founders, who hold 38.4% of the company’s shares. Snap got orders for more than 10 times as many shares as the number that were for sale in the IPO.
Uncovering the Secret History of Wall Street’s Largest Oil Trade (BBG)
Betting that oil prices were about to crash in 2008 was an audacious wager, one made all the more remarkable by the individuals behind the deal—civil servants with unassuming titles such as “director general of fiscal planning.” In the lucrative oil business, a profession known for its generous compensation, these government employees were probably the worst-paid stiffs around. Yet the men from Hacienda—so called still, even though women are sometimes in the room—proved prescient in predicting a crash.
Trading places: the rise of the DIY hedge fund (Wired)
"You're not trying to beat hedge funds at their game, you're trying to come up with a new idea that's slightly diversified from what they're doing," Houghton says. "Obviously, the hedge fund's job is to hunt for the same thing. But what's attractive about it from an investor point of view is: if you source the ideas in a completely different way, do you end up with different ideas, which are more diversified than the pool of a few hundred people who work for big institutions?"
At Kushners’ Flagship Building, Mounting Debt and a Foundered Deal (NYT)
“This building has had financial issues for years now,” said Joe McBride, a senior associate at Trepp LLC. “How much longer can they sustain it? Occupancy is at 70 percent, more leases are expiring, and they’re going into their own pocket to pay the debt.”
Trump Plans Have Deal Makers Dreaming Big ($100-Billion-Cash-Takeover Big) (NYT)
The tone for much of the conference was set as Kurt Simon, global chairman for mergers and acquisitions at JPMorgan, made his bold prediction that an enterprising corporate giant today could assemble an all-cash takeover bid of $100 billion. It was an audacious claim — the record for an all-cash offer is Bayer’s $66 billion bid for Monsanto last year — but it illustrated how favorable the markets are for deal making.
Wall Street braces for rough ride as exchanges seek more speed bumps (Reuters) The SEC approved the market's first speed bump last year, but rules around intentionally slowing down trades are vague and it is difficult to predict which, if any, of the proposals will pass. SEC staff are scrutinizing how each exchange justifies its plans, said a person familiar with the matter. "Whenever you have something that applies to one group and not others, it's discriminatory in some sense," said the person, who asked for anonymity as they are not authorized to speak to the media. "The question is, can you justify the discrimination?"
'The most dangerous idea in Federal Reserve history' seems to be making a comeback (BI)
New research from the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco suggests policymakers have even less reason to worry, finding that " interest rates have stronger effects on the macroeconomy than previously understood." This means that "even a modest tightening cycle can have a substantial restraining effect on both inflation and economic activity," write Òscar Jordà, a vice president in the San Francisco Fed’s research department, along with two co-authors.
Crafting False Narratives (Irrelevant Investor)
Like everything else in investing, it’s easy to look back at monthly or yearly periods and craft a false narrative, because the day-to-day or week-to-week gets lost in the data. Below are the weekly April returns going back to 1970. I’m pretty sure that the strength in April didn’t matter to investors in 2000, when they dumped stocks to the tune of 10.5%.
Warren Buffett Helps Launch Cherry Coke in China (WSJ)
The billionaire businessman has lent his likeness to Coca-Cola Co. to assist the soda company in promoting the Chinese release of Cherry Coke. They’re plastering his face on special-edition versions of the drink in the country for a short time. The stunt seems like a win-win for both Mr. Buffett and Coke.