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Global Banks Poised for Turmoil as West Hits Russia With Sanctions [NYT]
“The issue here is not just the immediate impact on the financial markets, but the fact that it’s almost impossible in the near term to disentangle” Russia from global trade, Elina Ribakova, the [Institute of International Finance’s] deputy chief economist, said in an interview. “There is room for contagion….”
Russia’s own economy could be relatively protected from the full impact of sanctions. Its external debt and ties to other advanced economies have waned since the 2014 Crimea crisis, insulating its economy from efforts to cut it off from the global financial system, economists at Capital Economics noted. They predicted that the most likely sanctions measures could shave around 1 percent from Russia’s gross domestic product.

Hedge Funds Slash Tech in Pivot to Other Strategies, Goldman Report Says [Bloomberg]
Funds with $2.6 trillion of gross equity holdings have reduced positions in more expensive growth sectors in favor of energy and financials, according to the note…. The repositioning as of Dec. 31 -- which has seen hedge funds become more tilted to value than they have been since 2011 -- has been reflected in market moves this year. The benchmark S&P 500 gauge fell into a correction on Tuesday, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 has slumped 15% this year amid an increasingly hawkish tone from the Federal Reserve in light of soaring inflation….
Highlighting the growth-to-value rotation, six tech stocks -- including chipmaker Advanced Micro Devices Inc. and payments firm Block Inc., -- dropped out of the VIP list this quarter, while gas company Cheniere Energy, Inc. and three financials companies joined the list.

What The Trading Irregularities Probe Means For AMC Stock [TheStreet]
Last week, the U.S. Justice Department launched an investigation into potential trading irregularities conducted by banks and hedge funds. This renewed hope among AMC shareholders that they'll be vindicated for what they've been claiming all along…. The report that authorities are putting bankers and hedge funds under scrutiny may serve as a positive for AMC shares, as it shows that investors' claims have not been in vain and that individuals have had a say in the markets.

Volkswagen’s Porsche IPO Won’t Put Investors First [WSJ]
VW hasn’t made its plans clear, but all the indications are that it won’t distribute Porsche stock to its shareholders the way that Fiat Chrysler did with its Ferrari stock in 2015. Porsche SE said Tuesday that the potential transaction could involve it buying ordinary shares in Porsche AG, which it wouldn’t need to do if VW shareholders automatically receive them…. Another reason VW investors tend to cheer news of a Porsche IPO is that a deal would clarify sum-of-the-parts calculations and thus the “conglomerate discount” at which VW trades. Without any indication that the parent company would sell down its majority Porsche stake once listed, though, the discount would likely persist.

HSBC Sets Climate Targets but Leaves Out Emissions From Capital-Markets Activity [WSJ]
That exclusion “should raise questions about the credibility of its strategy,” said Jeanne Martin, senior campaign manager at ShareAction, a nonprofit group that has worked on an investor effort pushing HSBC for tougher climate targets…. Noting that another U.K. lender, Barclays PLC, has set a target for capital-markets emissions, ShareAction said HSBC’s decision to omit them from its targets was “a breach of the spirit of the agreement” that led to the withdrawal of its own shareholder proposal.

The Wall Street Journal’s owner opts for a ‘flexible’ return to the office. [NYT]
In a companywide email, Almar Latour, the chief executive, and Dianne DeSevo, the chief people officer, said leaders would discuss what type of return worked best for their teams and would start to apply it next month…. Dow Jones encompasses The Wall Street Journal as well as the Dow Jones newswires, Barron’s, Financial News and MarketWatch.

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