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Russia seems to have averted its historic bond default — for now [CNBC]
While Russia seems to have been able to meet its coupon payment obligations in full on this occasion, Moscow’s willingness and ability to repay its international debt are likely to be tested again.
That’s because an exemption currently granted under U.S. sanctions is set to expire in late May, likely further complicating Russia’s ability to service foreign debt payments.

Sanctions against Russia may cost BNY Mellon $200 million this year. [NYT]
The company, which holds and manages $46.7 trillion worth of assets for clients such as asset managers, has ceased new business in Russia and has “suspended investment management purchases of Russian securities,” Garrett Marquis, a BNY Mellon spokesman, said in a statement on Thursday. “We will continue to work with multinational clients that depend on our custody and record keeping services to manage their exposures.”

First Hong Kong-Listed SPAC Has Slow Start In Trading Debut [Bloomberg]
The SPAC closed 3.2% lower at HK$9.68 after a session marked by only a few trades. The firm backed by CMB International Asset Management and AAC Mgmt Holding raised about $128 million in the IPO with shares sold at HK$10 each, inaugurating rules for blank-check companies effective since January…. Hong Kong’s rules for SPACs are more stringent than those of other venues given past scandals involving shell companies.

Barry Diller’s Gambling License Is Delayed by Regulator Over Investigation Into Trading [WSJ]
In 2020, Mr. Diller and his internet holding company, IAC/InterActiveCorp., said it had spent more than $1 billion for a 12% stake in MGM Resorts, in pursuit of the growing online gambling industry in the U.S. IAC’s stake in the Las Vegas-based casino operator has since grown to about 14%.

LME draws ridicule as nickel markets see third day of chaos [FN]
False starts, IT and system issues thwarted metals traders hoping to resume a sense of normalcy to trading after nickel reached a record high exceeding $100,000 a tonne on 8 March. The LME not only halted trading for eight days, but took the extreme step of cancelling trades, infuriating traders including hedge fund boss Clifford Asness…. Further adding to the chaos, at least three trades were able to breach the LME's lower limit on 18 March, according to Bloomberg. The LME told Bloomberg that those trades will be cancelled, too.

GameStop Shares Fall on Surprise Loss [WSJ]
“The combination of supply chain issues and the Omicron variant had a sizable impact on this past year’s holiday season,” GameStop’s chief executive, Matt Furlong, said on a call with analysts.
Even so, it isn’t a good sign if the company can’t turn a profit in what is supposed to be its busiest time of the year, said Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter. “If they can’t make money in the holiday quarter, they’re doomed,” he said.



Opening Bell: 6.27.22

Citi’s misfire; people are pessimistic; Russia reneges; Hong Kong has problems; and more!

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Opening Bell: 3.14.22

In Putin’s Russia, business leaves you; of nickel and dimes; Warren Buffett really likes oil company; and more!

By Lichunngai (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

Opening Bell: 10.27.20

Hong Kong happenings; defaults dry up; big deals; and more!

gamestop 3

Opening Bell: 3.9.21

GameStop, victims bounce back; SoFi buys a charter; SPAC daddies; private equity hiring (lobbyists); and more!


Opening Bell; 3.29.22

Nielsen p.e. buyout gets high ratings; State Street driven out of Hong Kong; Robinhood never sleeps; and more!


Opening Bell: 4.15.21

Russian risks; pharma deals; GameStop gripes; and more!


Opening Bell: 12.3.21

Didi hails a ride to Hong Kong; omicron shmo-micron; Libor lovers; Donald Trump continues to uphold the dignity of the presidency; and more!

By World Economic Forum (Flickr: The Global Financial Context: James Dimon) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Opening Bell: 10.13.21

JPMorgan jumps; Biden bears down on bitcoin; fintech’s colorblind—bankers, not so much; Jack Ma’s not-so-triumphant return to Hong Kong; and more!