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Invesco in Talks to Merge With State Street’s Asset-Management Business [WSJ]
In a sign of potential investor enthusiasm for such a tie-up, Invesco shares rose more than 8% in after-hours trading Thursday after The Wall Street Journal reported on the talks. State Street shares rose more than 1%.... Consolidation in the industry has picked up precipitously in recent years, and both Invesco and State Street have been active deal makers. Invesco snapped up several other asset managers, including OppenheimerFund Inc. and Guggenheim Partners’s ETF business. State Street expanded its asset-servicing arm, adding financial-data firm Charles River Systems Inc. Earlier this month, the Boston-based bank agreed to acquire Brown Brothers Harriman & Co.’s investor-services unit for $3.5 billion in cash.

U.S. to Target Crypto Ransomware Payments With Sanctions [WSJ]
To effectively disrupt illicit crypto transactions, Treasury would need to target the digital wallets that receive ransom transactions, the crypto platforms that help exchange one set of blockchain coins for another to obscure the culprits and the people that own or manage those operations, according to analysts who specialize in such transactions…. Treasury and other regulating agencies also have been levying penalties and sanctions against individuals and companies facilitating illicit finance through the crypto markets as a warning to others.

Powell orders ethics review after Fed presidents disclosed multimillion-dollar investments [CNBC]
Powell ordered the review “because the trust of the American people is essential for the Federal Reserve to effectively carry out our important mission,” the spokesman said. “This review will assist in identifying ways to further tighten those rules and standards. The Board will make changes, as appropriate, and any changes will be added to the Reserve Bank Code of Conduct.”
Documents released last week revealed that Dallas Fed President Robert Kaplan made multiple trades worth $1 million or more last year in individual stocks including Apple, Amazon and Delta Air Lines.

Tech investor Chamath Palihapitiya: ‘I reserve the right to change my mind’ [FT]
How much of Palihapitiya’s success has to do with the favourable market in the past decade? “Probably a lot,” he says, before adding: “My real long-term track record won’t be known for another decade or two….”
Palihapitiya points out that his Spacs have generally done well since their mergers. The broader market is doing so poorly, he says, because interest rates are poised to rise, making a popular hedge fund strategy for Spac investing less attractive. Palihapitiya also blames banks for encouraging inexperienced financiers to start blank-cheque companies that went on to strike bad deals.
“What’s happened is you’ve had a lot of folks who are extremely talented, credentialed people do deals that were a bit of a headscratcher,” Palihapitiya says. “That’s caused that market to trade off in a very significant way.”

Jeff Bezos congratulates space rival Elon Musk on historic mission [Page Six]
Musk’s Space X company launched a historic all-civilian flight on Wednesday night, marking the first time that people have traveled to space without a professional astronaut on board.
But rather than brooding over his rival beating him to the milestone, Bezos, 57, tweeted, “Congratulations to @ElonMusk and the @SpaceX team on their successful Inspiration4 launch last night. Another step towards a future where space is accessible to all of us….” Musk, 50, continued the oddly gracious exchange, replying “Thank you.”

Mets owner Steve Cohen challenged Twitter followers to identify anonymous source [N.Y. Post]
The hedge fund billionaire, who offered three fans the chance to sit with him in his suite at Citi Field for guessing the source correctly, claimed to know that it was David Samson, the former Marlins president.
The Post does not identify its anonymous sources, but beat writer Mike Puma, who wrote the story, tweeted that it was not Samson…. “Cohen is out there tweeting about the organization and about stuff that he shouldn’t be tweeting about like he’s a fan,” the former executive said. “Why would somebody want to sign up for that? I think it’s a huge issue.”

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