Opening Bell: 10.30.18

POTUS back on her bullshit; GE says "remember dividends"; BlackRock is a dying canary in a coal mine; Paranormal pornstars; and more!
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Exclusive: Trump to terminate birthright citizenship [Axios]
President Trump plans to sign an executive order that would remove the right to citizenship for babies of non-citizens and unauthorized immigrants born on U.S. soil, he said yesterday in an exclusive interview for "Axios on HBO," a new four-part documentary news series debuting on HBO this Sunday at 6:30 p.m. ET/PT.
Why it matters: This would be the most dramatic move yet in Trump's hardline immigration campaign, this time targeting "anchor babies" and "chain migration." And it will set off another stand-off with the courts, as Trump’s power to do this through executive action is debatable to say the least.

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GE Slashes Dividend, Revamps Power as New CEO Begins Turnaround [Bloomberg]
General Electric Co. slashed its dividend to just a penny a share and said it plans to reorganize its ailing power division as new Chief Executive Officer Larry Culp took his first major steps to save the beleaguered manufacturer. The shares rose.
GE cut its quarterly dividend from 12 cents a share -- only the third reduction since the Great Depression -- which will save GE about $3.9 billion a year.

The Stock Market Held a Sale, and No One Turned Up [WSJ]
The question on which investors need to take a stand: Is this a healthy correction in a bull market with further to run, a reset lower in belated recognition of this year’s geopolitical risks, or the start of a new bear market ahead of recession as soon as next year?
A healthy correction is a classic case of the stock market holding a sale. As market pessimism feeds on itself, take the advice of the father of value investing, Benjamin Graham, and buy from the pessimists. This is usually the right advice in a big market fall, although since the fall has left the market only about where it started the year, it isn’t—yet—that big.

Hedge fund manager on his New York Times stake: 'Newspapers are mostly dead, but the news isn't' [CNBC]
"Newspapers are mostly dead, but the news isn't dead," Gil Simon, SoMa's founder and chief investment officer, said during an interview with CNBC's Leslie Picker at the Sohn conference in San Francisco. "What you've actually seen is a pretty significant evolution in the business model of news, and really, The New York Times is at the forefront of that."
Simon, once the chief investment officer of Apex Capital, likened the news organization's new model to that of up-and-coming music streaming services, which rely heavily on consistent revenue base.

Exclusive: Defense firms see only hundreds of new U.S. jobs from Saudi mega deal [Reuters]
Every time President Donald Trump mentions the $110 billion arms deal he negotiated with Saudi Arabia last year, he quickly follows up, saying “It’s 500,000 jobs.”
But if he means new U.S. defense jobs, an internal document seen by Reuters from Lockheed Martin forecasts fewer than 1,000 positions would be created by the defense contractor, which could potentially deliver around $28 billion of goods in the deal.
Lockheed instead predicts the deal could create nearly 10,000 new jobs in Saudi Arabia, while keeping up to 18,000 existing U.S. workers busy if the whole package comes together - an outcome experts say is unlikely.

BlackRock’s October Plunge Leads Selloff in Asset-Manager Stocks [Bloomberg]
“For the next stretch it’s going to be tough going as investors are likely to shoot first and ask questions later,” Glenn Schorr, an analyst with Evercore ISI, said in a note to investors last week.
An S&P index of asset managers and custody banks is down 14 percent this month, compared with a 9.3 percent drop in the S&P 500 Index. Year to date, the asset managers index has lost almost a quarter of its value and it’s headed for the biggest annual loss since 2008.

Austerity Is Over, Britain Says, Despite Brexit Uncertainty [NYT]
Delivering his final budget speech before Britain’s scheduled exit from the bloc next March, Mr. Hammond announced a tax on multinational digital giants that have been widely criticized for paying little taxes in many European nations.
But his big political message was a promise to end a long-running squeeze on public spending with an injection of extra money for health, education, defense and even for repairing potholes on highways. The amount employees can earn before they pay income tax will also rise, helping increase take-home pay.

Pornstars set up paranormal investigation team after things get really creepy during raunchy shoot [Mirror]
If you search for adult videos, there are probably hundreds of racy Ghostbusters parodies available on the internet.
But a new online series will feature a group of pornstars hunting ghosts in real life - no scripts, or sex toys necessary.
The team, made up of four core members, is known as Paranormal Pornstars and they claim to be looking for answers to the age old question: 'Is there life after death?'

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Opening Bell: 10.8.15

Goldman, Morgan Stanley win back hedge fund business; BlackRock says shut.it.down; Clinton will propose tax on high frequency trading; "Student reportedly expelled from UConn for mac and cheese tantrum"; and more.

By MEDEF [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Opening Bell: 10.9.18

IMF getting bearish on the world; Google says "oopsie"; Hard Brexit will blow back on Germans; Cold pizza protest; and more!

(Getty Images)

Opening Bell: 4.7.17

JPMorgan-GE romance could be ending; Julian Robertson kills his darlings; farewell to Don Rickles; and more.

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Opening Bell: 6.29.16

Moody's downgrades 12 UK banks; Soros bets against Deutsche Bank; Saudi Arabia beating off bankers with a stick; Cops say woman wielded hatchet after her demands for sex were rebuffed; and more.

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Opening Bell: 3.22.18

Facebook says "Sorry?"; Trump says "Gyna bad"; Dow says "Ouch"; President-elect Dimon takescare of number one; and more!

Opening Bell: 10.7.15

Fantasy sports probe; Ackman says GE was too expensive; TPG raises real estate fund; Steve Cohen is loving life; "College bro arrested over mac-and-cheese rant at food court"; and more.

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Opening Bell: 12.5.17

Mueller is poking around at Deutsche Bank; bankers might be a little too accommodating to hedge fund clients; actual mining company mines bitcoin; Irish villagers face erection epidemic; and more.

Opening Bell: 12.04.12

Banks Rediscover Money Management Again As Trading Declines (Bloomberg) Global banks, forced by regulators to reduce their dependence on profits from high-risk trading, have rediscovered the appeal of the mundane business of managing money for clients. Deutsche Bank is now counting on the fund unit it failed to sell to help boost return on equity, a measure of profitability. UBS is paring investment banking as it focuses on overseeing assets for wealthy clients. Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo, three of the five biggest U.S. banks, are considering expanding asset- management divisions as they seek to grab market share from fund companies such as Fidelity Investments. “Asset management is a terrific business,” said Ralph Schlosstein, chief executive officer of Evercore Partners Inc., a New York-based boutique investment bank that last month agreed to buy wealth manager Mt. Eden Investment Advisors LLC. “Asset managers earn fees consistently without risking capital. Compare that to other businesses in the financial services.” Hedge Funds Win as Europe Will Pay More for Greek Bonds (Bloomberg) Hedge funds drove up prices for Greek sovereign debt last week after determining that European finance ministers would back off a pledge to pay no more than about 28 percent of face value to retire the nation’s bonds. Money managers correctly wagered that not enough bondholders would participate at that level to get the deal done. That would put at risk bailout funds that Greece needs to stave off economic collapse. Transactions involving Greek bonds “increased by the day” after it became clear that the buyback was going to happen, with hedge funds accounting for most of the purchases, said Zoeb Sachee, the London-based head of European government bond trading at Citigroup Inc. “If all goes according to plan, everybody wins,” Sachee said. “Hedge funds must have bought lower than here. If it isn’t successful, Greece risks default and everybody loses.” GE's Swiss lending unit for sale, UBS to bid (Reuters) General Electric Co wants to sell its Swiss consumer lending business, two sources familiar with the matter said, with UBS one of the parties interested in a deal that could be worth up to 1.5 billion Swiss francs ($1.62 billion). The sources told Reuters that UBS was one of at least two parties who plan to submit bids in an auction process. "GE wants to finalize the sale of GE Money Bank by the end of the first quarter," said one of the sources. Brian Moynihan: 'Fiscal Cliff' Repercussions Could Stretch in 2014 (CNBC) "I'm more concerned about business behavior slowing down than I am about consumer behavior," Moynihan told "Squawk Box." "I think we're in danger if this thing strings out into 2013 that you could start to have problems of what 2014 would look like." Icahn Fails In Oshkosh Tender Offer (WSJ) The activist investor was tendered only a meek 22% of shares in an offer he used essentially as a proxy for whether shareholders would support his board nominees. Icahn, who had pledged to drop the offer and his proxy fight if he didn’t receive at least 25% of shares tendered, says he is indeed dropping the tender offer. Ex-baseball star Lenny Dykstra sentenced in bankruptcy fraud case (Reuters) Lenny Dykstra, the 1980s World Series hero who pleaded guilty earlier this year to bankruptcy fraud, was sentenced on Monday to six months in federal prison and ordered to perform 500 hours of community service. The 49-year-old former ballplayer - who is already serving time in state prison for grand theft auto, lewd conduct and assault with a deadly weapon - was also ordered to pay $200,000 in restitution. In the federal case, Dykstra pleaded guilty in July to bankruptcy fraud and other charges. According to the written plea agreement, he admitted defrauding his creditors by declaring bankruptcy in 2009, then stealing or destroying furnishings, baseball memorabilia and other property from his $18.5 million mansion. Teacher disciplined for receiving foot massages from students (SLT) A Taylorsville Elementary School teacher has returned to his third-grade classroom after being disciplined for violating professional standards after students reported they scratched his back, rubbed his feet and had other inappropriate contact while at school. Granite School District officials found no criminal conduct by elementary teacher Bryan Watts, 53, who has worked at the school since 2004, but the district claims to have taken "appropriate disciplinary action" following complaints about Watts...Granite District police Detective Randall Porter started an investigation into Watts’ conduct Oct. 9 after a mother expressed concern to the district after her daughter reported odd classroom behavior by Watts. "She complained that her daughter [name redacted] told her that Watts asks students to rub his feet and back during ‘movie time,’ that Watts told the class that they should not tell their parents about activities that happen in the classroom, and that Watts scared a student by hitting a hammer on the student’s desk," Porter wrote in his 19-page report...officials also said there were student statements about odd activities, including playing dodgeball in Watts’ classroom. Knight Capital May Go It Alone (NYP) Knight Capital’s board emerged from another meeting yesterday to review dueling takeover offers without making a decision. Both Getco and Virtu Financial have made bids for the Jersey City, NJ-based Knight, which had to be bailed out several months ago after a $460 million trading glitch nearly tanked the firm. “[Knight] can still decide to remain independent. That’s a real possibility,” said one source familiar with the bidding process. Top US Firms Are Cash-Rich Abroad, Cash-Poor At Home (WSJ) With billions of dollars overseas that may never come back, the Securities and Exchange Commission is concerned that companies haven't been presenting investors with an honest appraisal of their liquidity. As a result, regulators are pressing companies to more clearly lay out how much of their cash is in the U.S. and how much is overseas and potentially encumbered by U.S. taxes. UBS Near Libor Deal (Reuters) UBS is nearing a deal to settle claims some of its staff manipulated interest rates, and could reach agreement with US and British authorities by the end of the year, a source said yesterday. Britain’s Barclays was fined $453 million in June for manipulating Libor benchmark interest rates, and remains the only bank to settle in the investigation, which led to the resignation of the bank’s chairman and CEO. Calpers Crusader Takes Aim At Fees (WSJ) Mr. Desrochers, a 65-year-old native of Canada who last year became head of private-equity investing for the California Public Employees' Retirement System, has told buyout funds to reduce fees if they want cash from the $241 billion pension goliath, one of the nation's largest private-equity investors. He has pushed for Calpers to pay management fees below the industry's standard of 1% or more and asked for performance fees below the usual 15% to 20% of gains, according to people who have dealt with him. Mike Tyson: Brad Pitt Had Sex With My Wife (NYP) Mike Tyson claims that he caught Pitt having sex with his ex-wife, Robin Givens, while they were in the middle of their divorce in the late eighties. Tyson, who was shortly married to Givens from 1988 to 1989, said he and the actress were still sleeping with each other during their separation. "I was getting a divorce, but... every day, before I would go to my lawyer's office to say 'she's a pig and stealing,' I would go to her house to have sex with her," Tyson said on the Yahoo! Sports show “In Depth with Graham Bensinger.” "This particular day, someone beat me to the punch. And I guess Brad got there earlier than I did." How did the heavyweight boxer react? "I was mad as hell...You should have saw his face when he saw me," Tyson said.