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19 December 2012
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  Top Stories 
 
  • Cerberus will sell stake in firearms manufacturer
    Private equity firm Cerberus Capital Management said it will sell its 95% equity stake in Freedom Group, the company that makes the Bushmaster AR-15 rifle that police said a gunman used last week to kill 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. The California State Teachers' Retirement System said it will take a new look at its investment in Cerberus in January because of its relationship with Freedom Group. Los Angeles Times (tiered subscription model) (18 Dec.), Quartz (18 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • 9 MF Global clients weren't required to post collateral
    Most of MF Global Holdings' small customers are still waiting to get some of their money back after the firm's bankruptcy, but a few big clients avoided losses because the commodities broker gave them preferential treatment before its collapse. Nine of MF Global's customers, including Koch Industries' energy-trading arm and two units of ConocoPhillips, were allowed to substitute bank letters of credit for cash or other assets as collateral. The Wall Street Journal (18 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Market Activity 
 
  • Japan leads rise in Asian-Pacific markets
    Asian-Pacific markets advanced broadly Wednesday with Japan's Nikkei 225 breaking above the 10,000 threshold for the first time since April 4. It rose 2.4% to close at 10,160.40. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.5%. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index rose 0.6%. China's Shanghai Composite was flat. South Korea's Kospi was closed in observance of the nation's presidential election. India's Sensex was up 0.6% at midafternoon. The Wall Street Journal (19 Dec.), The Economic Times (India) (24 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Investors ramp up holdings of commodities this year
    The amount of money investors put into commodity funds this year increased 92% compared with 2011, according to EPFR Global. U.S. government data show that hedge-fund bets on a commodities rally are up 51% from a year ago. Goldman Sachs Group and Morgan Stanley said they expect commodity prices to go higher. Bloomberg (18 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Exchanges, SEC close to agreeing how to work "kill switch"
    U.S. exchanges, brokers and the Securities and Exchange Commission are closing in on a "kill switch," a mechanism by which software glitches can be neutralized by halting trading before chaos ensues. "I think we are hopeful to have something to report in the first quarter of next year," the New York Stock Exchange's Joe Mecane told the Senate banking committee Tuesday. Mecane also said retail investors were essentially being abused by more-skilled traders because of how the market infrastructure has evolved. Reuters (18 Dec.), Securities Technology Monitor (18 Dec.), Financial Times (tiered subscription model) (18 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Economics 
  • Advisers face challenge analyzing Roth IRA conversion
    Financial advisers asked to recommend whether a client should convert a traditional individual retirement account to a Roth IRA are facing a complex task in a changing tax environment. The most obvious factor to consider is a 3.8% Medicare surtax on net investment income for some Americans. Financial Advisor online (18 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Eurozone trouble spurs neighbors to cut rates
    With the European Central Bank predicting no eurozone recovery before mid-2013, central banks surrounding the zone have reduced key interest rates. "They did the right thing," Swedbank analyst Knut Hallberg said of Sweden, Hungary and Turkey. "There is a slight, slight chance of another cut [because] it's going to be a tough winter." Bloomberg (18 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Geopolitical/Regulatory 
  • Central bankers aim to settle Basel differences
    Central bankers and regulators are set to gather in January to resolve differences over global liquidity rules as they attempt to hammer out a complete Basel III accord, sources say. Sticking points include types of assets that may be counted and an implementation date of 2015. Bloomberg (18 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • U.S. seeks clues to Chinese intentions on trade
    U.S. officials hope to get a clearer picture of how China's new leadership views financial, economic and trade policy during this week's annual session of the U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade. Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party, has spoken in favor of a more open economy, with less reliance on exports to the U.S., but he hasn't appointed an economic team. The Washington Post (18 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

Investment professionals are cautiously optimistic about the global economy in 2013, but ethical culture within financial firms needs to be addressed. Click here to view and download the full report.
  Financial Products 
  • AdvisorShares is set to launch ETF linked to business cycle
    AdvisorShares says it will list on NYSE Arca on Wednesday an exchange-traded fund designed to deliver positive yields at every stage of the business cycle. The Pring Turner Business Cycle ETF will shift investments between corporate debt rated BBB or higher, stocks, and ETFs and exchange-traded notes. IndexUniverse.com (17 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Ethics 
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