Opening Bell 6.18.18

Goldman moonlighters; Volkswagen arrests; Disney downgrades; Fast fire responses and more!
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Goldman Sachs Bankers Moonlight as Venture Capitalists [WSJ]

Plenty of big banks invest in promising startups, but they typically do so through their strategy groups or asset-management arms. Goldman has those, too, but they are distinct from the portfolio maintained by its investment bankers, who are investing on the bank’s behalf.

The bankers were early backers of now-household names including Uber Technologies Inc., online storage vault Dropbox Inc. DBX 9.63% and payments company Square Inc. Recent investments include Ripple Foods, which makes milk from peas, and Marqeta Inc., a credit-card startup, the people said.

Head of VW's Audi arrested in Germany over diesel scandal [Reuters]

Munich prosecutors, who earlier this month widened their probe into Audi, said Rupert Stadler was being held due to fears he might hinder their investigation into the scandal, plunging Volkswagen (VOWG_p.DE) into a leadership crisis.

News of the arrest comes as Volkswagen’s (VW) new group CEO Herbert Diess is trying to introduce a new leadership structure, which includes Stadler, to speed up a shift toward electric vehicles in the wake of its “dieselgate” troubles.

Climate Change May Already Be Hitting the Housing Market [Bloomberg]

Even as President Donald Trump downplays the importance of climate change, there are signs that Americans may be taking it more seriously—at least when it comes to buying a house.

Between 2007 and 2017, average home prices in areas facing the lowest risk of flooding, hurricanes and wildfires have far outpaced those with the greatest risk, according to figures compiled for Bloomberg News by Attom Data Solutions, a curator of national property data. Homes in areas most exposed to flood and hurricane risk were worth less last year, on average, than a decade earlier.

Disney shares downgraded to sell on concern the battle for Fox has placed company in an unwinnable situation [CNBC]

"The stock's recent run-up fails to reflect that a higher price paid for Fox's Entertainment assets would reduce the value of Disney to its shareholders," wrote analyst Brian Wieser. "Alternately, the absence of completion of the transaction would also be negative for Disney as it would mean the company would be unable to realize the synergies it expects to produce from the transaction."

Crew called to own station: Response time 'exceptional' [Otago Daily Times]

Fire and Emergency New Zealand spokeswoman Lyn Crosson said a Lookout Point crew was called to Lookout Point station just before 9.30am but stood down ''very quickly'' after they discovered the alarm was due to smoke coming from an oven.

''Something overcooked maybe.''

Crews were on scene within moments, she said.

''Our response time was exceptional''.

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