Opening Bell: 7.22.20 - Dealbreaker

Congressional Republicans Are Close to Revolt Over Stimulus Aid [NYT]
Even as Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the majority leader, divulged details of his emerging plan, expected to total roughly $1 trillion, President Trump had yet to sign on and Republicans remained deeply divided over several key elements…. It was an inauspicious start to talks on the measure, and top Republican officials privately cautioned on Tuesday that the coming negotiation, a wide-ranging election-year brawl, was likely to stretch into August, leaving tens of millions of unemployed Americans without extra help as Congress hammers out the latest recovery plan and the virus surges….
“I just walked out of a meeting that could be sort of a Bernie bros, progressive caucus,” Senator Rand Paul, Republican of Kentucky, told reporters after the lunch. “I’m alarmed that we’re talking about spending another trillion dollars we don’t have.”

Wells Fargo CFO, who survived accounts scandal, to retire. BNY Mellon exec to replace him [Charlotte Observer]
The departure of Shrewsberry and replacement with another former colleague of Scharf’s nearly completes the new CEO’s revision of the senior management at the bank. Since he took over, he has consistently added scores of former colleagues, with a particular focus on JPMorgan.
[Mike] Santomassimo worked at JPMorgan from 2005 to 2016. He will be based in New York, like Scharf and many of his hires.

Former Morgan Stanley financial adviser charged with stealing $6 million from clients [CNN Business]
[Michael] Carter, 47, allegedly stole from victims including an elderly investment advisory client who had been saving a college fund for her grandchildren and from people he knew "through familial ties and friendship," according to a complaint brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission. The complaint alleges he used the money to fund an expensive lifestyle that included a luxury car and large home mortgage.

Bill Ackman: Pershing Square ‘taking no compensation’ for new SPAC investment vehicle [CNBC]
“What’s new in our structure is it’s the first SPAC where we’re taking no compensation: no management fees, incentive fees ... we’re not buying cheap stock. There’s literally no compensation to the sponsors,” he said Wednesday on CNBC’s “Squawk Box”.
The fund, called Pershing Square Tontine Holdings is poised to become the largest special purpose acquisition company, or SPAC, on record when it begins trading on Wednesday.

Merkel Lobbied for Wirecard Despite German Probe [WSJ]
Ms. Merkel brought up Wirecard’s plans to acquire Beijing-based AllScore Payments Systems during a state visit to China in early September 2019, according to her spokesman….
The spokesman said the chancellor didn’t know of any possible serious irregularities at Wirecard at the time…. Yet two weeks before the trip, the German Finance Ministry had informed the chancellery that Wirecard was being investigated by the German market watchdog and flagged recent press reports, including one about the Financial Times defending its reporting on Wirecard’s accounting practices and potential financial misconduct, according to spokesmen for the chancellor and the finance ministry.

Credit Suisse Set to Score a Smaller Role on Ant’s Mega IPO [Bloomberg Quint]
Credit Suisse Group AG has been fighting for a major role in the offering and Ant is leaning toward naming them as a joint global coordinator for its Hong Kong listing, which could raise about $10 billion…. Ant has picked four sponsors for its Hong Kong share sale, Bloomberg News has reported. The banks include China International Capital Corp., Citigroup Inc., JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Morgan Stanley, people familiar have said.

Tesla Knocks on S&P 500’s Door [WSJ]
To be considered for the index, companies must report an accumulated profit over four consecutive quarters, including the most recent. Tesla has yet to accomplish the feat. The consensus estimate of analysts polled by FactSet is for a modest loss. Some analysts are more optimistic because of the company’s recent history of earnings beats…. “It’s unusual to see a stock get to the market cap that Tesla has without being in the benchmark,” said John Porter, head of equities at Mellon Investments Corp., overseeing about $35 billion in stock, including a position in Tesla. “Normally, you wouldn’t get to an outsize market cap before you’re already generating a profit.”

CFTC Chairman Pushes to Finalize Dodd-Frank Rules [WSJ]
The effort has caused advocates of stricter regulation to accuse Mr. Tarbert of trying to ram through industry-friendly rules without providing sufficient time for public review…. The act has its 10-year anniversary today. Those include rules about how the agency regulates cross-border derivatives transactions and the number of contracts market participants can hold on certain commodities such as oil and wheat….
The agency’s two Democratic commissioners have said the most recent proposal would saddle the U.S. financial system with the risk from deals cut by the affiliates of U.S. banks, while allowing them to operate outside of U.S. regulations.

UK’s first regulated crypto hedge fund set to close down after failing to attract investors [FN]
Prime Factor Capital, the first cryptocurrency-focused hedge fund to be given a licence by UK regulators, has struggled to attract investors since launching in 2018. Its founders are now in the process of dismantling the business, according to people familiar with the matter.

Men’s Wearhouse, Jos. A. Bank Parent Looks to Close More Than Third of Stores [WSJ]
Tailored Brands Inc. also said Tuesday it will lay off 20% of its corporate staff and reduce its supply-chain footprint…. Before the public-health crisis began, the Houston-based retailer was already challenged by a trend away from suits as men’s workplace fashion drifted toward more casual styles. The coronavirus pandemic, which has shifted many white-collar jobs to telecommuting, accelerated that trend, [CEO Dinesh] Lathi said last month.

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