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28 December 2012
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  Top Stories 
  • "London whale" harpoons banks' regulation fight
    Some banking insiders and industry experts attribute the sector's lack of success in fighting provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act to the "London whale." They say the trader's $6 billion trading loss for JPMorgan Chase focused regulators on closing loopholes and stopped efforts to amend the law. The Wall Street Journal (27 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Market Activity 
  • Asian-Pacific markets advance as Japan's yen takes big fall
    Asian-Pacific markets rose Friday. Japan's Nikkei 225 closed up 0.7%, giving investors a gain of almost 23% on the year, its best annual performance since 2005. A sharp drop in the yen's value boosted share prices. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index rose 0.2%. China's Shanghai Composite rose 1.2%. Taiwan's Taiex added 0.7%. South Korea's Kospi and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 each ended 0.5% higher. India's Sensex was up 0.7% at midafternoon. MarketWatch (28 Dec.), The Economic Times (India) (03 Jan.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • "Dim sum" bonds become Asia's top-performing local currency debt
    "Dim sum" bonds became Asia's best performing local currency debt this year, after being the debt category's worst performer in 2011. This year, corporate yuan-denominated debt securities sold beyond mainland China rose 6.2%, more than local currency bonds sold by private companies in any other Asian country. Bloomberg (26 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  • Japan's factory output drops more than expected
    Japan's industrial production dropped 1.7% between October and November, a bigger decline than experts anticipated, according to the Ministry of Economy, Industry and Trade. The ministry's survey found that companies expect the trend to reverse quickly with output rising 6.7% in December and a further 2.4% in January. Market News International (27 Dec.), Bloomberg (28 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Analysis: U.K.'s immigrants more successful than natives
    Immigrants coming to Britain often have higher incomes and more advance educational levels than those born in the U.K., but polls show that the British are unhappy about immigration, according to The Economist. "Overall ... Britain's immigrants are a success story, especially compared with other European countries," the magazine notes. "...They are motivated to stand on their own feet and usually have, or quickly gain, the skills to do so." The Economist (free content) (22 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Survey: Women control more wealth, want financial advisers' help
    Despite their increasing control of U.S. wealth, 1 in 3 women does not have a financial adviser but is eager to work with one, according to a survey by Prudential Financial. Fifty-three percent of the women participating said they are their families' principal breadwinners. Some experts predict women will control two-thirds of the nation's wealth by 2030. (26 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  • ECB maintains vow that bond buying comes with conditions
    European Central Bank Governing Council member Luc Coene said Thursday that it will maintain its bond-buying conditions. The ECB will only buy possibly limitless amounts of bonds if a member nation applies to the eurozone bailout fund. Reuters (27 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Mutual funds dispute additional registration regulation
    The Investment Company Institute and the Chamber of Commerce filed an appeal contesting the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission's lower court victory that requires funds trading in commodities to register with the CFTC in addition to the Securities and Exchange Commission. The CFTC's victory Dec. 12 overturned a previous federal court decision. The Wall Street Journal (27 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • High-speed traders use paid-for research to defend practices
    Some of the research high-frequency traders are using to argue against regulations governing the industry was paid for by those trading firms. Many conclusions that trading firm executives and lobbyists presented as solid endorsements of high-frequency trading disregard reservations expressed by the researchers themselves, who warn the studies have important shortcomings. The Wall Street Journal (27 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Obama presses for Asian trade deal
    President Barack Obama has invested his own time, and that of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, visiting Asia to build support for a trade deal that could bring the U.S. an additional $108 billion a year. Obama's trade strategy revolves around the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership. Representatives of 11 countries, including the U.S., will discuss easing barriers to trade at a meeting in Singapore in March. Bloomberg (27 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Financial Products 
  • Vanguard cuts fees for 10 sector ETFs
    Vanguard, America's third-biggest sponsor of exchange-traded funds, signaled that it isn't prepared to give up any ground in the financial industry's ETF fee war. The firm, which for years has been known as one of the most inexpensive providers of financial products, lowered its fees for 10 sector ETFs. The reductions apply to Vanguard's Health Care, Utilities, Consumer Discretionary, Energy, Consumer Staples, Materials, Industrials, Information Technology, Financials, and Telecom Services ETFs. (27 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • FINRA fines 5 Wall Street banks over payments to lobbyists
    The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority said it imposed fines of just over $4.48 million on five Wall Street banks for improperly attempting to obtain reimbursement for payments to lobbyists from the proceeds of state and municipal bond sales. The regulator said the banks asked for the refund of fees paid to the California Public Securities Association by claiming that lobbying payments were underwriting expenses. Reuters (27 Dec.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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