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Dropbox raises IPO price range by $2 on strong demand

( ) – Cloud storage firm Dropbox Inc [DBX.O] raised the price range for its initial public offering by $2 on Wednesday as investors bid strongly for the first big tech IPO this year ahead of final pricing expected on Thursday.

The company now expects the offering to be priced between $18 and $20 per share, up from its previous range of $16 to $18. bit.ly/2ubO2LU

The new price range suggests the company, co-founded by Andrew Houston and Arash Ferdowsi in 2007, could have a market capitalization of up to $8.7 billion based on a fully diluted share count and the IPO could raise up to $720 million.

“The initial file price range was quite conservative relative to the valuations placed on comparable firms, such as Box,” said Jay Ritter, an IPO expert and professor at the University of Florida.

Despite the bump in price, Dropbox’s market cap is still below the $10 billion valuation that it commanded in a 2014 private funding round.

Dropbox’s IPO is being closely watched by the investment world to gauge market appetite for tech unicorns – young companies valued at more than $1 billion.

The last big unicorn to go public was Snapchat-owner Snap Inc (SNAP.N), whose shares have cratered since the company’s high-profile IPO last year. The stock closed a dollar below its IPO price of $17 on Tuesday.

Dropbox’s IPO comes on the heels of a strong market debut of cyber security firm Zscaler Inc (ZS.O), which had also raised the size and price of its offering.

Music streaming service Spotify, valued at roughly $19 billion in the private markets, has also filed for a direc,上海夜生活服务Rachel,t listing and will debut on the NYSE on April 3.

,上海凤楼夜网Paige,

Dropbox’s increase in IPO price range bodes well for Spotify, said Michael Carvin, Chief E上海夜生活论坛xecutive of personal finance technology firm SmartAsset. “They will be watching this closely as they look towards their own debut.”

,上海夜生活乌托邦Nala,

A direct listing lets investors and employees sell shares without the company raising new capital or hiring a Wall Street bank or broker to underwrite the offering.

In contrast, San Francisco-based Dropbox has hired JPMorgan and Goldman Sachs, among others, for its IPO.

The order book for the offering closes at midday on Wednesday and the pricing is expected on Thursday.

Sources told on Monday that the offering was oversubscribed.

The company has 500 million users and competes with Alphabet Inc’s (GOOGL.O) Google, Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O), Amazon.com Inc (AMZN.O). Box Inc (BOX.N) is its main rival.

The stock will start trading on the Nasdaq on Friday.

CFTC ‘astounded’ as Congress prepares to cut budget

WASHINGTON ( ) – The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), which has pushed for a budget increase to fund its job of overseeing the multitrillion-dollar derivatives market, said on Thursday it was “absolutely astounded” that the U.S. Congress is prep,上海夜生活男人好去处Pamela,aring to cut its funding.

The CFTC would receive $249 million in a recently released government funding bill that Congress is trying to pass before midnight Friday. That is $1 million less than the CFTC’s current budget, driving the regulator and its chairman, Christopher Giancarlo, to directly criticize Congress.

“We are absolutely astounded by the decrease in the CFTC’s budget,” said Erica Elliott Richardson, the CFTC’s director of public affairs. “Chairman Giancarlo takes this budget decrease incredibly personally, and is currently meeting with our finance team to figure out a path forward for the agency.”

When the funding bill was unveiled late Wednesday, the House ,上海夜生活乌托邦Idaia,Appropriations Committee said the funding level,上海夜玩网论坛Sabina, would “ensure robust swaps, futures, and options markets while prioritizing resources.”

For years, the CFTC has argued its budget is insufficient, given its expanded responsibilities monitoring der上海夜生活网ivatives following the passage of the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law. Its budget has been flat for four years.

The agency actually went so far as to split with the White House in 2017, asking for $31.5 million more in funding than the Trump administration requested.

The CFTC had requested the same amount, $281.5 million, in its most recent budget request in February. The new White House budget proposed levying $31.5 million in fees on derivatives users to grow the agency’s budget.

Giancarlo told lawmakers in March it represented “the level of funding necessary to fulfill our statutory mission.”

Ten years after JPMorgan/Bear Stearns deal banks may have already…

( ) – Ten years after JPMorgan (JPM.N) bought failing investment bank Bear Stearns, one of the first big harbingers of the financial crisis, investor views on U.S. banks are significantly brighter, although the sector may have already put its biggest gains behind it.

JPMorgan initially announced its bid of $2 per share for Bear Stearns on March 16, 2008 when the Wall Street bank was on the brink of collapse due to its exposure to toxic mortgage bonds and a draining of its cash reserves after cu上海夜网stomers fled as the subprime mortgage crisis intensified.

Fast forward ten years and U.S. bank balance sheets are much healthier as post-crisis regulations such as the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010 forced banks to be more transparent and led them to shore up reserves and make less risky bets.

The S&P 500 bank stock index .SPXBK shows gains for six of the last 10 years, including 20 percent gains in each of the last two years, as investors piled in for a piece of the profit expansion they expected from tax reform, rising interest rates and deregulation.

(GRAPHIC: Yearly Percent Changes: S&P 500 vs S&P 500 Banks – reut.rs/2FAAGOG)

But now some analysts and investors are questioning how much further the sector can rise as they watch loan growth, rising credit losses and worry about an acceleration in the pace of Federal Reserve interest rate hikes.

“There’s a lot priced into the banks at this point,” said Jeff Morris, head of U.S. equities at Aberdeen Standard Investments in Boston citing bets on tax reform, deregulation and up to three U.S. interest rate hikes in 2018.

“To propel the bank stocks from here you need more of the same. You need additional signs of regulatory reform. You’d also need to see higher interest rates and more in the way of loan growth,” said Morris. “In loan growth w,夜上海419龙凤论坛Landon,e haven’t seen much acceleration since the tax plan and the banks themselves aren’t talking about seeing a real acceleration in loan growth.”

Bank loans and leases grew 3.2 percent in 2017 compared with a 6.5 percent rise in 2016 and the growth rate had dipped to 2.7 percent by February, according to the Federal Reserve data.

JPMorgan has come the furthest of the S&P bank stock index constituents with a price increase of 215 percent since March 14, the last trading day before its Bear deal was announced.

Its shares are now trading at 12.7 times forward estimates compared with 12.5 for the broader bank sector and 17 for the benchmark U.S. S&P 500 stock index. In comparison JPMorgan’s price earnings ration was 10.7 around the time of the Bear deal while the sector was valued at 12.3 and the S&P 500 had a multiple of 13.

(GRAPHIC: Forward PE: S&P 500 vs S&P 500 Banks – reut.rs/2FKgmX3)

Charles Peabody, analyst at Compass Point Research & Trading expects loan growth to pick up in 2018, but he is less convinced about credit cost trends.

Credit costs have been low as banks became cautious about underwriting loans after the financial crisis, resulting in lower loan losses, but as the government eyes looser regulations and banks relax lending standards, Morris sees credit losses rising.

“We don’t see any particular credit crisis coming up,” he sa,上海夜生活论坛Larissa,id but predicted that losses would “pick up over the next several years to get back to a more normal level.”

Since consumer credit costs started to rise albeit gradually, in 2017, Compass Point’s Peabody now expects costs from corporate loans to also reach an inflection point in 2018.

“People are being overly optimistic in earnings estimates because they’ve not factored in higher costs for credit going forward,” he said. “I expect loan loss provisions for the big banks to double from current levels between now and at some point in 2019.”

Wall Street analysts expect S&P 500 index banks to report 26 percent earnings growth for 2018, compared with 12.3 percent for 2017, according to Thomson data, but Peabody is skeptical.

“The banks stocks will start to underperform at some point in the second half this year as people’s optimism is not realized,” he said.

Rising interest rates are also putting bank investors on edge. While rate increases tend to boost profits as banks can charge more for loans, if the rise is too steep it could dampen demand for mortgages or home refinancing loans.

“The easy gains are behind us,” said Rick Meckler, president of investment firm ,上海仙霞路夜生活Pamela,LibertyView Capital Management in Jersey City, New Jersey. “In banks, rising rates are a positive and a negative. Right now it’s a positive but at some point the negative aspects will come into play. Investors have to realize there’s a danger level they have to watch for.”

Scalia’s death set to affect court’s rulings in current term

WASHINGTON ( ) – The death of Justi,上海高端夜生活在那里Sabrina,ce Antonin Scalia on Saturday means that the normally nine-member U.S. Supreme Court will probably be down to eight when it rules on such divisive issues as abortion, immigration, affirmative action and the power of public-sector unions.

With a replacement unlikely to be appointed before the current Supreme Court term ends in June, there is the possibility it will be split 4-4 on a string of rulings. When the court is equally divided, the lower court ruling remains in place but no national precedent is set.

Scalia’s death will affect cases that have not yet been argued and those in which arguments were already held but no ruling has been issued. Court experts say that any preliminary votes Scalia took on cases already argued will no longer count.

For a graphic of major cases before the court in the current term, see tmsnrt.rs/1Mcg8WN

His death could deprive the court’s conservative majority of some major wins, but does not guarantee wins for liberal causes. In the short term, Justice Anthony Kennedy, a conservative who sometimes sides with the four liberals, will still be the key vote.

That could change the outcome of a major case argued in January that could affect the influence of public-sector unions. The issue is whether public employees who do not want to join a union can be required to pay “fair share” service fees, which are equivalent to members’ dues, without violating First Amendment rights of free speech and association. Based on the oral arguments, it appeared the conservative majority was ready to vote against the unions.

Now, a 4-4 split is a likely outcome, which would hand a win to the unions as that would leave the lower court’s ruling in their favor in place.

Similarly, the court in December considered an important affirmative action dispute over whether a University of Texas admissions program that considers the race of som,上海夜生活Pamela,e applicants to ensure campus diversity violates the constitutional guarantee of equality. It was unclear based on the oral argument how the court would vote.

Justice Elena Kagan was already recused in that case, so Scalia’s death means there can no longer be a 4-4 split. The liberal wing could now win if Kennedy joins them. That would lead to an unexpected victory for affirmative action advocates.

The court has not yet heard oral argument,上海仙霞路夜生活Fabi,s in three major cases in which Scalia was likely to be a key vote on the conservative wing of the court.

On March 2, the court will consider a tough new abortion law in Texas that women’s health providers say infringes upon the constitutional right of women to have an abortion. The law requires clinics carrying out abortions to have costly hospital-grade facilities and requires physicians carrying out abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of where they are operating. It is the court’s first abortion case since 2007. If the court was split 4-4, the law would be upheld.

In April, the court is due to weigh President Barack Obama’s bid to resurr上海夜生活网ect his plan to shield more than four million illegal immigrants from deportation, a unilateral executive action he took in 2014 to bypass the Republican-led Congress. Scalia’s death does not necessarily boost the administration’s chances. Obama’s executive action was blocked by lower courts, meaning a 4-4 split would leave that ruling intact.

Written by shyw on August 20, 2017 Categories: rjpcynas Tags: , ,

Attack ads, protests and phone calls: selling the Supreme Court…

WASHINGTON ( ) – As President Barack Obama unveiled his Supreme Court nominee on Wednesday, a carefully crafted operation to sell his choice to Americans and to resistant Republicans rolled into action.

Liberal groups announced a national campaign to target Republican Senate opponents with demonstrations and television ads in what is likely to be one of the most bitter fights ever over a Supreme Court nomination.

The White House has enlisted legal scholars and corporate executives to make the case for centrist judge Merrick Garland despite resistance from Senate Republican Leader M上海夜生活论坛itch McConnell and other senior Republicans who have said Obama should let the next president fill the position.

Garland himself, an appeals-court judge, immediately started making calls to Capitol Hill, signaling the start of a battle for public perceptions as Obama seeks to highlight what Democrats characterize as unprecedented obstructionism.

The pressure may not be enough to convince Republicans to give Garland a hearing, let alone a confirmation vote.

But the White House is betting that since many Republicans face tough re-election battles, they may be less willing to reject Garland out of hand.

The White House has enlisted former White House officials Stephanie Cutter and Katie Beirne Fallon to mobilize liberal groups, which see the fight as a historic chance to push the Supreme Court to the left as well as mobilize their supporters ahead of the elections.

“We’re going to organize in record numbers,” said Mary Kay Henry, president of the Service Employees International Union, which plans rallies outside the offices of Republican senators in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinois, Wisconsin and New Hampshire starting next week.

MOVING THE NEEDLE

Republicans likely won’t be swayed by such messages, but voters may be, said Michael Gottlieb, a lawyer at Washington firm Boies, Schiller, & Flexner who was involved with the last four Supreme Court nominations.

“What moves the needle is if your average person, an independent voter or a moderate Republican, sees inaction on a nominee as the Senate not doing its job,” Gottlieb said.

Some 57 percent of Americans believe Obama should name a replacement for the vacant seat while 33 percent say he should not, according to /Ipsos polling.

Events planned by a slew of Democrat-linked groups will feature “working Americans telling Senate Republicans to do their jobs,” according to a former White House official who is involved in the efforts.

Social media will play a big part. A petition under the Twitter tag #DoYouJob has already collected 1.5 million signatures.

A central target is Republican Senator Charles Grassley of Iowa, who has said any Obama nominee would not get a hearing before his Judiciary Committee.

Facing a tough Democratic challenger and pressure from liberal activists, Grassley talked with Garland by phone on Wednesday and held out the possibility of a meeting.

Democratic aides say they aim to pressure Grassley into holding a hearing. Whether he does or not, they see Grassley in the meantime struggling to justify his current hard-line position, which they think could help his Democratic opponent in November, former Lieutena,夜上海419龙凤论坛Hadrian,nt Governor Patty Judge.

RE-ELECTION WORRIES

Republican senators facing re-election in New Hampshire, Illinois, and Ohio have said they are willing to meet with Garland.

Democrats view those seats as among the most promising targets in their effort to win back control of the 100-seat body. Some 34 seats are up for grabs in the Senate, where Republicans have a 54-46 seat majority.

Democrats say the fight could make Senate races in Missouri and North Carolina competitive as well, though independent analysts say they still face an uphill climb.

With the election still seven months away, “it will be tough to keep the issue at the forefront of voters’ minds,” said,上海夜生活乌托邦Fabi, Nathan Gonzales, who tracks elections for the Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report. 

Despite the political overtones, Obama opted to pick a relatively uncontroversial candidate. Garland, the top judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, is viewed as a centrist who is not ideologically driven.

Some conservative groups say Garland’s past rulings indicate that he would push the court to the left on gun rights, government regulations and other key issues. But others plan to keep the focus on Obama, not his nominee.

“If you start eviscerating him in the public sphere, you’re going to create sympathy and the White House will use that,” said Jason Pye, a spokesman for libertarian group FreedomWorks. Members of the network have sent more than 500,000 emails urging Republican senators to stick to their position, he said.

The White House said it had enlisted 356 legal scholars, 217 corporate lawyers and 17 environmental executives in a letter-writing campaign urging Republican senators to act.

Some on the left say they may have a hard time rallying their members behind a centrist, 63-year-old white male candidate.

“We have to go where grassroots energy is. We can’t just manufac,上海夜生活论坛Kaiden,ture it out of thin air,” said Neil Sroka, a spokesman for Democracy For Action, a network of 1 million progressive activists.

REIT exposure to Toys ‘R’ Us is minor, but shares slip anew

NEW YORK ( ) – Shuttered Toys ‘R’ Us stores can likely be filled by discounters and fitness centers, analysts said on Thursday, but shares in real estate investment trusts that lease to the chain fell as its troubles reflected broader worries plaguing the sector.

Toys ‘R’ Us represents just a fraction of the overall portfolios for REITs that lease to the toy store chain and the leases were priced below market value, analysts and an executive ,上海夜网后花园Kaia,at Kimco Realty Corp said.

And analysts said that re-leasing the vacant spaces once hundreds of stores close is unlikely to pose a problem for locations in primary markets with heavy traffic.

Toys ‘R’ Us on Thursday said it was seeking approval to liquidate inventory in 735 U.S. stores, which debtors anticipate will close by the end of this year.

Kimco leased to Toys ‘R’ Us stores at 23 of its almost 500 shopping centers, which represented only 1 percent of annual base rent, said David Bujnicki, head of investor relations at the New Hyde Park, New York-based REIT.

At an average of $11 a square foot, the existing Toys ‘R’ Us rents are about 15 percent to 20 percent below market, so there should be upside when the spaces are released, Bujnicki said.

REITs that lease to Toys ‘R’ Us were dragged lower as the company’s liquidation added to a gloomy real estate outlook amid broadly poor retail sales and rising interest rates.

Bucking that trend, shares of Vornado Realty Trust, which owns about one-third of Toys ‘R’ Us, rose 0.59 percent to $68.62 on the possibility it might either recover some of its 2005 investment or use it as a tax write-off.

“There is a sort of a silver lining in here for Vornado,” said Alex Goldfarb, an analyst at Sandler O’Neill + Partners LP in New York.

REPLACEMENTS

Kimco expects shuttered stores to be replaced by Burlington Stores Inc, operator of Burlington Coat Factory; TJX Cos Inc, which ,上海会所夜网Queena,owns TJ Maxx, Marshalls and Home Goods stores; fitness centers and specialty grocers.

Alan Esquenazi, partner with commercial brokerage Continental Real Estate Companies in Coral Gables, Florida, said he is already working on three Toys ‘R’ Us sites to be relet.

“If they’re in solid markets, there are all kinds of takers for them. If they’re in secondary and tertiary markets, everyone’s got something to worry about,” Esquenazi said, expressing a widely held view about the state of retail.

“There is no shortage of retailers in demand for the good retail locations,” he said.

Retailer bankruptcies are part of a natural cycle in real estate, and what is key is whether bankruptcies can be handled in a reasonable time, Goldfarb said.

“What makes real estate valuable is an ability to back fill. When you don’t have that ability to back fill, that’s when you get nervous,” he said.

Brixmor Property Group Inc, which leased to Toys ‘R’ Us at 11 of the 475 retail centers it owns or operates, has shown an ability to fill vacant spaces, he said.

VALUE?

Investors may have sold off the REITs without a thorough analysis of the retail sector.

The new tenant might be a restaurant, entertainment or lifestyle tenant, where there is a repurposing cost, said Scott Crowe said, chief investment strategist at CenterSquare Investment Management in,上海夜网推油Jacob, Philadelphia.

“Even though the fundamental picture has been challenging, the stocks are more than cheap enough to be interesting上海夜生活网,” Crowe said.

Shares of Kimco closed down 1.03 percent to $14.44, Brixmor shares fell 0.46 percent to $15.28 and DDR Corp slid 0.86 percent to $6.90.

DDR leases to Toys ‘R’ Us at seven locations, its website shows.

The real estate sector has been the worst-performing sector of the S&P 500 index this year as fear of rising interest rates has crimped performance and e-commerce competition rattles investors.

Commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS) also have exposure to the Toys ‘R’ Us closings.

Morningstar Credit Ratings in January identified 20 loans with a combined property balance of $500.2 million where the planned closing of 182 stores at the time could lead to a significant drop in occupancy and cash flow, it said.

interview with ECB chief economist Praet

FRANKFURT ( ) – The following is the text of a interview with European Central Bank chief economist Peter Praet.

Q: Mario Draghi took a cautious view on inflation, arguing that economic slack may be bigger than earlier thought. What is the implication of this unexpected slack?

 

A: The policies we have undertaken, especially since 2014, have been quite successful in getting us closer to our inflation aim. But there are uncertainties about the process of inflation, given factors like globalization and technological changes. Mario Draghi raised important questions, which have been discussed among central bankers: what is the non-accelerating inflation rate of unemployment (NAIRU), what is the output gap and how big is the slack? He was exploring the possibility that the degree of slack might be bigger than what you find in classical assessments.

We are continuously surprised by the response of the labor market to increasing aggregate demand of a growing economy because rising demand has been leading to continuous positive supply reactions in the labor market.

ECB staff estimates that the euro area output gap is closed, and there is already a positive output gap in Germany. But there is little inflation. Maybe there is another ,上海凤楼夜网Hadley,explanation. Perhaps we are getting a supply of labor that is pushing the frontier out. In Germany we know that migration from Central and Eastern European countries with relatively comparable skills is making an impact.  Without such a labor supply reaction, you would have had wage inflation about 1 percentage point higher, and as a consequence, higher inflation.

Q: Would that mean that the output gap is not yet closed?

A: That is an open question. We are all surprised by the reaction of the labor market to better economic conditions. The increasing participation of women and older people is certainly making an impact. In term of hours worked, we have not yet recovered the level of 2007. But in terms of employment, we have. It seems there is a trend for people to work less or part time. 

Now we are reaching a floor for unemployment but it’s not so clear if we’re going to see wage increases and Mario Draghi was opening the conversation on the possibility that there may be more slack in the economy. That still needs to be confirmed but we already have strong evidence of a strong labor supply reaction.

The survey of professional forecasters indicates that unemployment will fall to 7.5 percent in 5 years. It’s not clear if that’s the new NAIRU. Economists have been surprised by the fact that the NAIRU has been continuously revised downwards. The supply of labor has increased more than expected, so there were reservoirs of labor. It could be migration or longer working hours.

It is clear that if you believe that the degree of slack is higher, then the process of convergence to below, but close to, 2% over the medium term would be drawn out.

We should not draw implications for policy immediately but it shows you the richness of the discussion at a stage where the economy is booming and we don’t see very strong wage increases and little pass through to prices.

However, we still see improvements in the path of inflation, so the bottom line is not bad at all. It means that the economy may have unexploited potential capacity.

Q: If slack is bigger, wouldn’t it,上海夜网推油Caden, mean that the path would be shallower?

A: Well, other things being equal, it would be shallower.

Another explanation for low wage growth is that there is some backward looking behavior in the wage-setting mechanism and in inflation expectations. For the time being I take an open view.

Monetary policy also plays a role. Our asset purchases program has a minimum horizon of end September, or beyond, if necessary, and in any case until we see a sustained adjustment in inflation. It is true that when we communicate about what happens beyond September, we want to have confirmation of data. Things are going in the right direction but there are a number of uncertainties. So the message is patience, persistence and prudence.

When do you need to communicate what happens beyond September?

It can’t be on the very last day, but I argue that it shouldn’t be too early, either. There are not too many Governing Council meetings between now and then.

Can you see a scenario that you use the June projections to set up the decision and then take the actual decision in July?

The projection exercise is always important. There are four per year and there will be one in June. It’s true that projections in general are useful to guide and structure the discussion. But I would caution against concluding that there is a pattern. We should not put too much weight on the projections.

Q: You mentioned earlier that market expects the first rate hike between the first and second quarters of next year. How comfortable with those expectations?

A: The expectation implicit in the forward curve currently fluctuates around April and May. Market analysts’ surveys indicate expectations of a slightly delayed lift-off.

I don’t want to directly answer this question. But we try to judge if market expectations reflect fundamentals and if market expectations fit with our views. It’s a two way street: we learn from markets and markets learn from us.

Markets have a certain expectation about the end of the net asset purchase program (APP). We try to see if this fits with the narrowing between the inflation objective and market indicators of inflation expectations. For example, I look at the gap between the objective of below, but close to, 2% and the 5-year/5-year forward swaps-derived inflation rate, which is now at 1.7 percent. So the gap is narrowing, which is why markets don’t expect us to continue the APP much longer.

Market prices seem to be coherent with the narrowing of the gap between market-based inflation expectations and our objective. It’s a good sign. There is a convergence between market expectations and our intended end date, with the optionality.

When approaching the end of our net asset purchases, our forward guidance on policy rates will have to be further specified and calibrated as appropriate to keep inflation on a sustained adjustment path toward our inflation objective.

 

Q: So what happens afterwards?

 

A: Our resilience criterion for inflation is not always understood well. It means that for us to stop net asset purchases, we have to be sure that the financial conditions resulting from that announcement will not compromise the adjustment path of inflation.

This path is by itself conditional on easy financial conditions. And financial conditions are the result of three instruments: net purchases, re-investm上海夜生活ents and our forward guidance on the short-term policy rates. Today we say that our policy rates will stay at their present levels well past the horizon of our net asset purchases.  This indication is an important conditioning variable – together with net purchases and re-investments – behind the convergence path that we project today. As we move forward in time, as is natural, the relative importance of the three policy tools will change, and the main tool for shaping the policy stance will become the path of our key interest rates and the forward guidance about their likely evolution.

Today, by and large, markets quantify the “well past” interval as ‘up to next spring’. But at some point that ‘well past’ indication will not be sufficient any longer to give the public enough information about the most likely outlook for our policy.

Once you stop net asset purchases the signaling aspect of the APP disappears and you therefore have to be much more precise about the future path of the short term rates. We will then have to re-specify our forward guidance on interest rates. Most likely, we will calibrate it as appropriate for inflation to remain on the sustained adjustment path to our inflation aim. So, as in the past, we will ensure that monetary policy controls the short end of the yield curve.

We will proceed at a gradual pace, or a measured pace as Mario Draghi said, in a way that is most appropriate for inflation convergence – taking into account continued uncertainty about the size of the output gap and the responsiveness of wages to slack.

You said you would have a discussion about revising your guidance in early 2018. Should you revise the guidance at the same time as you decide what happens beyond September?

Indeed, early this year, we have removed the easing bias on our APP. Looking forward, I wouldn’t say there is a date or a deadline. The fact that the two of us are talking about this now is already very telling. However, I would not revise the guidance too early, because that could send wrong signals about the end of our net asset purchases, which in any case are intended to run until the Governing Council sees a sustained adjustment in the path of inflation. 

Q: When the first rate hike comes, will you only raise the deposit rate until the interest rate corridor is symmetrical again?

A: I think it is premature to discuss this question. What counts in the markets is the level and the expected path of the very short term rate at which banks borrow from each other. Because of sizeable excess liquidity expected to prevail over the coming years, the deposit facility rate is the policy rate that can steer those interbank conditions most effectively.

Q: Benoit Coeure argued that given your oversized balance sheet, you can retreat from asset buys without risking an unwarranted rise in term premia. Do you agree with this argument?

The float – the share of government bonds held by the private sector – has decreased with our purchases. The marginal intervention you have when the float is smaller has the potential to have some bigger effects on prices. But it is a relatively short term consideration. The main argument, and I think it is widely shared, is indeed that the stock becomes very important.  

But we need to consider that, as the stock ages automatically, there is a ‘duration leak’, if you do nothing about reinvestments. That’s where the reinvestment comes in. And we say we will reinvest for an extended period of time. It’s another element that in the future will have to be clarified.

Obv,上海仙霞路夜生活Oakley,iously, reinvesting in short term debt has not the same impact on duration as investing in longer term debt. The Fed tries to be relatively market neutral. That’s something we may wish to clarify in the future.

Clearly, we will remain an important participant in the bond market. But we do not dominate the market. Markets will continue to play a very strong role. That means our actions are very much scrutinized.

The influence we have on market prices reflect the credibility of our policy, of the central bank and the inflation objective.

Q: Is tapering at the end of the program necessary?

A: Let me start with what I read from markets: markets expect us to avoid cliff effects. I think it is a good illustration of the interaction I mentioned before. It’s again a question about being coherent with what you say. When you say you have a policy of prudence, because of a number of uncertainties, what you will do at the end of the program must be coherent with that sort of communication. So people can judge what is coherent with a notion of prudence and could conclude that we will gradually bring net asset purchases to an end once the Governing Council sees a sustained adjustment path. I think it is well understood by the market. 

U.S. judge declares mistrial in trial of ex-Georgeson employees

BOSTON ( ) – A federal judge on Monday declared a mistri,夜上海419龙凤论坛Tamara,al in the case of four former employees of a firm that advises companies on shareholder votes charged with participating in a scheme to pay bribes to learn how a proxy adviser’s clients voted.

U.S. District Judge Richard Stearns in Boston ordered the mistrial due to a medical issue invo,上海夜生活怎么玩Octava,lving the wife of one of the 12 jurors hearing the case against the former employees of Georgeson LLC, a proxy solicitation firm owned by Computershare Ltd.

The four ex-Georgeson employees, Michael Sedlak, Donna Ackerly, Charles Garske and Richard Gottcent, have pleaded not guilty to wire fraud and honest services wire fraud charges.

Prosecutors had been expected on Monday to finish presenting their case after three weeks of trial. While three defendan,上海夜生活桑拿会所Fabi,ts consented to going forward with just 11 jurors, prosecutors were only willing to do so if all four agreed to that option.

David Spears, a lawyer for Sedlak, said that given the prosecution’s decision, he would seek to prevent a retrial given the U.S. Constitution’s general prohibition against being tried twice for the same crime, known as double jeopardy.

“The government’s refusal to go forward with our clients after we consented is insupportable,” Spears said.

A spokeswoman for U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling confirmed the mistrial but declined further comment.

The trial came after Georgeson in November agreed to pay $4.5 million an上海夜生活网d enter into a deferred prosecution agreement to resolve charges that it conspired to bribe an employee of proxy adviser Institutional Shareholder Services.

Prosecutors said Brian Bennett from 2007 to 2012 used his job at ISS to supply Sedlak with information in exchange for concert and sports tickets worth $14,000, including for baseball games and U2 and Jay-Z concerts.

Sedlak forwarded the information to Ackerly, Garske, Gottcent and another Georgeson employee, Keith Haynes, prosecutors said.

Ackerly and Garske then arranged for clients to be billed for some of the bribes using false descriptions like “courier services,” prosecutors said.

The goal, prosecutors said, was to gain an illegal edge in their work helping companies shape strategies that could affect the outcome of shareholder votes.

The defendants denied wrongdoing and contended the information was not confidential.

Bennett and Haynes testified for the prosecution after pleading guilty. ISS in 2013 paid $300,000 to resolve U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission charges it failed to safeguard client information.

Factbox: Who is Cambridge Analytica and what did it do?

SAN FRANCISCO ( ) – British data analytics firm Cambridge Analytica is at the center of controversy in the United States a,上海夜生活桑拿会所Cain,nd Britain after two newspapers reported on Sunday that the company harvested personal data about Facebook users beginning in 2014.

Best known for assisting the 2016 presidential campaign of U.S. President Donald Trump, Cambridge Analytica is now facing a government search of its London office, questions from U.S. state authorities, and a demand by Facebook that it submit to a forensic audit.

Here is some of what is known about the company.

HOW DID IT START?

Cambridge Analytica is an offshoot of SCL Group, a government and military contractor that says it works on everything from food security research to counter-narcotics to political campaigns. SCL was founded more than 25 years ago, according to its website.

Cambridge Analytica was created around 2013 initially with a focus on U.S. elections, with $15 million in backing from billionaire Republican donor Robert Mercer and a name chosen by future Trump White House adviser Steve Bannon, the New York Times reported.

The company, which the New York Times reported was staffed by mostly British workers then, assis,上海夜玩网论坛Nala,ted Republican Senator Ted Cruz’s presidential campaign before helping Trump’s.

WHAT DO THEY DO?

Cambridge Analytica markets itself as providing consumer research, targeted advertising and other data-related services to both political and corporate clients.

It does not list its corporate clients but on its website describes them as including a daily newspaper that wanted to know more about its subscribers, a women’s clothing brand that sought research on its customers and a U.S. auto insurer interested in marketing itself.

Britain’s Channel 4 News reported on Monday, based on secretly recorded video, that Cambridge Analytica secretly stage-managed Kenya President Uhuru Kenyatta’s cam,上海夜哪里艳遇Dakota,paigns in the hotly contested 2013 and 2017 elections. Cambridge Analytica denied the report.

The company’s website lists five office locations in New York, Washington, London, Brazil and Malaysia.

WHEN DID IT FIRST GET ATTENTION?

After Trump won the White House in 2016, in part with the firm’s help, Cambridge Analytica CEO Alexander Nix went to more clients to pitch his services, the Times reported last year. The company boasted it could develop psychological profiles of consumers and voters which was a “secret sauce” it used to sway them more effectively th上海夜网an traditional advertising could.

Rival consultants and campaign aides, though, expressed doubts about the company’s claims. Brad Parscale, who ran Trump’s digital operations in 2016, said the campaign did not use Cambridge Analytica’s data, relying instead on voter data from a Republican National Committee operation.

WHAT IS IT ACCUSED OF?

Cambridge Analytica beginning in 2014 obtained data on 50 million Facebook users via means that deceived both the users and Facebook, the New York Times and London’s Observer reported on Saturday.

The data was harvested by an application developed by a British academic, Aleksandr Kogan, the newspapers said. Some 270,000 people downloaded the application and logged in with their Facebook credentials, according to Facebook. The application gathered their data and data about their friends, and then Kogan passed the data to Cambridge Analytica, according to both Cambridge Analytica and Facebook.

Cambridge Analytica said on Saturday that it did not initially know Kogan violated Facebook’s terms, and that it deleted the data once it found out in 2015. Kogan could not be reached for comment.

The data, though, was not deleted, the two newspapers reported on Saturday. Cambridge Analytica said that the allegation was not true. Facebook said it was investigating to verify the accuracy of the claim.

WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?

Facebook said it was pressing Cambridge Analytica for answers, after getting assurances from the firm in 2015 that it had deleted all data. Facebook has hired forensic auditors from the firm Stroz Friedberg to help.

While Facebook investigates, the social network said it was suspending Cambridge Analytica, its parent SCL, Kogan and another man, Christopher Wylie, formerly of Cambridge Analytica, from its platform for violating Facebook rules.

Facebook’s probe, though, may have to wait until government authorities complete their investigation. The UK Information Commissioner’s Office is pursuing a warrant to search Cambridge Analytica’s office and asked Facebook’s auditors to stand down in the meantime, according to Facebook.

Attorneys general from the U.S. states of Massachusetts and Connecticut have launched investigations into how the Facebook data was handled, and the attorney general’s office in California, where Facebook is based, said it had concerns.

California lawmaker aims to reduce eating disorders among fashion…

SACRAMENTO, Calif. ( ) – Fashion models who want to work in California would need a doctor to attest that they are of healthy weight and not suffering from an eating disorder under a proposal announced by a state lawmaker on Monday.

The bill proposed by California state Assembly member Marc Levine follows efforts in several countries to fight anorexia nervosa and other eating disorders among models, who are relentlessly pressured to lose weight or lose work.

“The evidence of eating disorders in the modeling industry is alarming,” Levine, a Democra,上海夜生活服务Faith,t who represents the Marin County suburbs of San Francisco, said in a statement on Monday.

Under his bill, which was introduced Feb. 19, modeling agencies would have to be licensed by the California Labor Commissi上海夜生活oner, and could be fined if they hire models who do not have a physician certifying that they are healthy.

The bill, if passed, directs the state’s Department of Public Health and the Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board to adopt rules for the health of fashion models that would include periodic health checkups, nutrition consultations and medical testing.

Levine sai,上海夜网后花园Queena,d the measure, which must pass numerous committees, both houses of the legislature and be signed by Democratic Governor Jerry Brown before it could take effect, would also help girls and women, who see impossibly thin models in magazines and aim to be like them.

“As a former fashion model and an eating disorder survivor, I know that this legislation is critically needed,” Nikki DuBose, a f,上海夜生活论坛Gabe,ormer model turned advocate, said in a statement.

Last spring, France banned excessive thinness in models, partly in response to the death in 2010 of Isabelle Caro, a 28-year-old former French fashion model who died from anorexia after posing for a photographic campaign to raise awareness about the illness.

Israel enacted a similar measure in 2013, while other countries, like Italy and Spain, rely on voluntary codes of conduct to protect models.

As many as 40 percent of fashion models may suffer from eating disorders, Levine said. These include anorexia nervosa, which leads sufferers to starve themselves; bulimia nervosa, which involves binge-eating followed by purges such as forced vomiting, consumption of laxatives or excessive exercise; and binge-eating disorder.

Ex-boss of China’s Anbang Insurance pleads for leniency in trial…

SHANGHAI ( ) – The former chairman of China’s Anbang Insurance Group Co Ltd [ANBANG.UL] requested leniency at the end of his high-profile trial in Shanghai for alleged economic crimes, including fraud and embezzlement involving more than $10 billion, according to court statements.

Wu Xiaohui had contested the charges against him during the proceedings on Wednesday but in a closing statement appeared to reverse course, saying he understood and regretted the crimes, the court said on an official social media feed.

The one-day trial came a month after the government seized control of Anbang, owner of New York’s Waldorf Astoria hotel, capping the company’s precipitous downfall amid Beijing’s crackdown on financial risk.

The Shanghai No.1 Intermediate People’s Court said Wu had “expressed deep self-reflection, understanding of and上海夜生活 regret for the crimes, and expressed deep remorse for his actions” in his closing statement, according to an online post seen by on Thursday.

“(He) tha,上海夜网官方网站Barrett,nked the justice system for its help, education and remedy, and requested a light sentence,” it said.

The court said it would issue a verdict at an unspecified later date.

Founded in 2004, Anbang became one of the most aggressive investors behind a wave of overseas acquisitions by China’s firms in recent years that have attracted the attention of global regulators and investors.

Its downfall was swift, as was Wu’s, highlighting Beijing’s resolve in a sweeping campaign to deleverage the economy, cut financial risk and discourage what it sees as profligate investing by large companies.

On Wednesday, the Shanghai No. 1 Intermediate People’s Court issued a stream of updates on the case, with alleged details that provide a rare glimpse into the conglomerate’s complex ownership structure and fundraising activities.

Prosecutors said Wu had concealed his control over Anbang and faked financial statements to cheat China’s insurance regulator for approvals to sell insurance products to the public for investment, the court said.

He broke the rules by telling his company to sell investment-purpose insurance products that exceeded the approved amount, the court said.

By Jan. 5, 2017, it said, Anbang had oversold 724 billion yuan ($115 billion) of insurance products and transferred some of the funds to his other companies for investment, debt repayment and personal spending.

All told, Wu was accused of swindling 65.2 billion yuan.

Wu raised objections during the proceedings, contesting alleged facts and charges, according to the court statements.

He claimed he did not understand the law and did not know whether his behaviour constituted a crime. He also believed he had not violated regulatory restrictions.

Wu, known for his hard-driving, hands-on approach and single-minded ambition, has been detained since June, sources have said.

The crimes that Wu has been accused of are punishable by up to life imprisonment, according to the criminal code.

Anbang said in a statement on Wednesday that it had ample cashflow and its operations were stable following its takeover by Beijing.

After a spate of high-profile deals worth more than $30 billio,上海会所夜网Radcliff,n, Anbang began to run into roadblocks even before Wu’s detention, failing to close on a handful of investments and facing criticism over its opaque shareholding structure.

On Feb. 23, the government took control of Anbang Group for a period of a year. During the takeover, the compan,上海夜生活怎么玩Barbara,y would be managed by officials from the China Insurance Regulatory Commission (CIRC), the central bank and other key financial regulators and government bodies.

It is unclear how Wu’s trial will affect Anbang or its ability to conduct business, but regulators have said they will undertake an equity restructuring of the insurer and protect the rights and interests of its consumers and stakeholders.

Mexican president says won’t pay for Trump wall, makes Hitler warning

MEXICO CITY ( ) – Mexico’s president has said his country will not pay for White House hopeful Donald Trump’s proposed wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, and likened his “strident tone” to the ,上海足浴夜网联系方式Cade,ascent of dictators like,上海夜网后花园Gabriel, Adolf Hitler 上海夜生活网and Benito Mussolini.

President Enrique Pena Nieto’s comments, published in Monday’s Excelsior newspaper, were among the most critical public comments yet by a foreign leader of the New York billionaire.

READ MORE: Diplomats sound alarm bells over ‘President Trump’

Trump, front-runner to win the Republican Party presidential nomination for the Nov. 8 election, has sparked outrage in Mexico with his campaign vow to build a wall along the southern U.S. border to keep out illegal immigrants and drugs, and to make Mexico pay for it.

Asked by Excelsior whether there was a “scenario” under which Mexico would pay if Trump won the presidency, Pena Nieto was clear. “There is no scenario,” he said. “I have to say that I regret (the plan), and of course, I can’t agree with this American politician’s position.”

Trump, who has also aroused concern among many in his own party with his proposals, has accused Mexico of sending rapists and drug runners across the border and vowed to increase fees on some Mexican visas and all border crossing cards to help make Mexico pay for the wall.

Pena Nieto attacked the “populism” of the Trump campaign, which he said sought to put forward “very easy, simple solutions to problems that are obviously not that easy to solve.”

“And there have been episodes in human history, unfortunately, where these expressions of this strident rhetoric have only led to very ominous situations in the history of humanity,” the Mexican president added.

“That’s how Mussolini got in, that’s how Hitler got in, they took advantage of a situation, a problem perhaps, which humanity was going through at the time, after an ,上海高端夜生活在那里Mabel,economic crisis.

“And I think what (they) put forward ended up at what we know today from history, in global conflagration. We don’t want that happening anywhere in the world,” Pena Nieto said.

Mexican Finance Minister Luis Videgaray called Trump’s wall a “terrible” idea in an interview last week, while former Mexican presidents Felipe Calderon and Vicente Fox have both compared Trump to Hitler.

In spite of his comments, Pena Nieto stressed that his administration will seek to reach agreement and maintain a respectful relationship with whoever wins the U.S. presidency.

Foreign diplomats are expressing alarm to U.S. government officials about what they say are Trump’s inflammatory and insulting public statements.

Virginia Senate approves electric chair amid drug shortage

RICHMOND, Va. ( ) – The Virginia state Senate on Monday approved a bill making the electric chair the default method of execution if lethal injection drugs are unavailable.

The bill passed the Republican-controlled Senate by a 22-17 vote. The ,夜上海419龙凤论坛Cain,Republican-dominated House has already approved the measure.

After a lower chamber vote on a minor amendment, the measure will go to Democratic Governor Terry McAuliffe for approval. A spokesman for the governor said the mea,上海夜生活桑拿会所Landon,sure would be reviewed when it arrived.

Virginia is one of eight states that allows electrocution as a method of execution, letting condemned inmates choose between it and lethal injection. If they do not choose, lethal injection is used.

Virginia, along with other states, has struggled to get lethal injection drugs because pharmaceutical companies have protested their use上海夜生活论坛 in executions.

The last death row inmate in Virginia to choose the electric chair for execution was in 2013.

Inmate Ricky Gray, who killed six people in Richmond in 2006, had been scheduled for execution on March 16, adding urgency to the legislative debate.

Gray’s execution has been postponed by the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, pending a decision by the U.S. Supreme Court about whether to hear the case.

Gray has not indicated which method of execution he preferred.

The legislation has fueled debate in Virginia over whether capital punishment, especially the electric chair, constitutes cruel and unusual punishment.

“The electric chair is outdated and barbaric,” Senator Scott Surovell, a Democrat from northern Virginia, said during a floor debate.

He lost an effort to amend the bill by requiring the Virginia Department of Corrections to explain in detail why it was not able to obtain lethal drugs before opting for electrocution.

,上海夜哪里艳遇Balthazar,State Senator Mark Obenshain, a Republican from the Shenandoah Valley, argued that if the amendment passed it would have further delayed execution of death row inmates.

“Some (people) just have black hearts. They’re beyond redemption,” said Obenshain, an unsuccessful Republican candidate for state attorney general in 2013.

Anbang’s ex-chairman Wu contests charges as trial opens in China

SHANGHAI/BEIJING ( ) – The former chairman of Anbang Insurance Group Co Ltd [ANBANG.UL], Wu Xiaohui, contested all charges against him in a 上海夜生活网high-profile trial that began in Shanghai on Wednesday, part of Beijing’s crackdown on profligate investing by conglomerates.

Wu’s trial for suspected economic crimes, including fundraising fraud and embezzlement, comes a month after the government seized control of Anbang, owner of New York’s iconic Waldorf Astoria hotel and other marquee properties around the world.

Founded in 2004, Anbang became one of the most aggressive investors behind a wave of overseas acquisitions by China’s firms in recent years that have attracted the attention of global regulators and investors.

Its downfall was swift, as was Wu’s, highlighting Beijing’s resolve in a sweeping campaign to deleverage the economy, c,夜上海419龙凤论坛Octavien,ut financial risk and discourage what it sees as profligate investing by large companies.

The Shanghai No. 1 Intermediate People’s Court issued a stream of updates on the case throughout Wednesday with alleged details that provide a rare glimpse into the conglomerate’s compl,上海夜生活网交流Idaline,ex ownership structure and fundraising activities.

“The prosecutor said the defendant Wu Xiaohui fraudulently and illegally raised money for the purpose of illegally taking assets, and the amount was especially huge; he (also) took advantage of his position to illegally take company capital as his own, and the amount was huge,” it said.

Prosecutors in the case found that in 2011 Wu had concealed his control over Anbang and faked financial statements to cheat China’s insurance regulator for approvals to sell insurance products to the public for investment, the court said.

That July, Wu broke the rules by telling his company to sell investment-purpose insurance products that exceeded the approved amount, the court said.

By Jan. 5, 2017, it said, Anbang had oversold 724 billion yuan ($115 billion) of insurance products and transferred some of the funds to his other companies for investment, debt repayment and personal spending.

All told, Wu was accused of swindling 65.2 billion yuan.

Wu raised objections during the proceedings, contesting alleged facts and charges, according to the court statements.

Related CoverageChina’s Anbang says has ample cash flow, operations stableAnbang’s former chairman contests all charges against him: Shanghai court

He claimed he did not understand the law and did not know whether his behavior constituted a crime. He also believed he had not violated regulatory restrictions.

Wu, known for his hard-driving, hands-on approach and single-minded ambition, has been detained since June, sources have said.

In a twist to the court case, Wu’s sister testified against him.

She said that Wu controlled more than 200 companies and used 38 of them to control Anbang Group, the court said. She also said that Wu registered shell companies in the names of relatives to hide his control.

Wu responded that he didn’t control some of the entities, and that he was unaware there were so many, according to the court account.

The crimes that Wu has been accused of are punishable by up to life imprisonment, according to the criminal code.

EQUITY RESTRUCTURING

Anbang said in a statement on Wednesday that it had ample cashflow and its operations were stable following its takeover by Beijing.

The court said parliamentarians, journalists and others, including family members of Wu, attended the hearing.

After a spate of high-profile deals worth more than $30 billion, Anbang began to run into roadblocks even before Wu’s detention, failing to close on a handful of investments and facing criticism over its opaque shareholding structure.

On Feb. 23, the government took control of Anbang Group for a period of a year. During the takeover, the company would be managed by officials from the China Insurance Regulatory Commission (CIRC), the central bank and other key financial regulators and government bodies.

It is unclear how Wu’s trial will affect Anbang or its ability to conduct business, but regulators have said they will undertake an equity restructuring of the insurer and protect the rights,上海夜网后花园Idris, and interests of its consumers and stakeholders.

Private conglomerates in China have recently attracted regulatory attention for their aggressive acquisitions of overseas assets.

Some insurers were punished for using client money derived from high-yield investment products sold to consumers for risky investments. This has particularly jarred with authorities concerned about an economy over-reliant on credit. ($1 = 6.2775 Chinese yuan)

Kroger’s Fred Meyer plans to phase out firearms business

( ) – Kroger Co’s (KR.N) superstore chain Fred Meyer said it wou上海夜生活ld exit its firearms business, two weeks after deciding to stop selling guns and ammunition to those under the age of 21.

Earlier this month, Kroger joined other U.S. retailers such as Walmart Inc (WMT.N) and Dick’s Sporting Goods Inc (DKS.N) to bar the sale of firearms to those under 21, following a deadly shooting at a Florida high school.

Fred Meyer said it was working on plans to phase out sales of firearms and ammunition.

“This is a victory for communities and for common sense. And it’s a positive step for our pension fund beneficiaries and for public safety,” New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer, who oversees the city’s public pension funds, said in a statement. Stringer said he had called for Kroger t,上海夜生活群Faith,o cease selling firearms last year.

Several large money management firms that own shares in gun makers, including Bla,上海夜网官方网站Rachel,ckRock Inc (BLK.N), the world’s largest asset manager, and State Street Corp (STT.N), have felt the heat following the Florida massacre and have sought answers from gun makers and distributors.

Fred Meyer said the firearm business generated about $7 million annually, while it also highlighted “softening consumer demand.”

Fred Meyer operates 133 stores in Alaska, Idaho, Oregon and Washington and sells fi,上海夜生活乌托邦Quaid,rearms in 43 of them.

Extreme bearish options on Tesla making money as stock dives

NEW YORK ( ) – The sharp slump in Tesla Inc’s shares this month could unlock massive gains on equity option bets investors placed over the last several months that pay when the electric car maker’s stock slides.

Tesla stock is down close to 27 percent this month, within striking distance of its worst month on record. Shares fell 7.7 percent to $257.78 on Wednesday, a day after tumbling 8.2 percent to their lowest close in almost a year.

Tesla was hit by federal probes of a fatal crash on March 23 in California involving one of its vehicles and a downgrade of its credit position by Moody’s Investors Service that cited liquidity pressures and a significant shortfall in Model 3 production.

As the shares sank, put options that convey the right to sell shares at a certain price in the future have jumped in value. With Tesla shares, put options betting on declines below $50, $100 and $200, by mid-January 2019, account for the three largest blocks of open contracts.

While Tesla’s shares remain far above these strike prices, recent losses have boosted the value of the put options.

Put options betting on the shares slipping below $50, changed hands on Wednesday for $1.93 a contract, up from 43 cents, a month ago. The $50, $100 and $200 puts are all trading at more than double,上海仙霞路夜生活Easton, their average trading price over the last three months, according to Thomson data.

“These puts have actually become something of a running joke on my network with many different people weighing in on why someone would trade a seemingly worthless option,” said Mark Longo of The Options Insider, an options commentary website.

One explanation could be that firms selling credit default swaps on Tesla may be using these puts as a hedge against Tesla going bankrupt, Longo said.

Ophir Gottlieb, chief execu上海夜生活tive of Los Angeles-based Capital Market Laboratories, said he thinks the position is unlikely to be a hedge against a position in the stock, given how far the strike prices are from where Tesla shares are trading.

“It would be like having a garden hose after a fire has already burnt,上海夜网邀请码Gabriel, the house,上海夜生活群Octavia,,” Gottlieb said.

“The distance between the strikes is very particular. Half of $200 is $100, half of $100 is $50. That sounds like an aggressive put spreader,” he said.

A bear put spread involves buying one set of put contracts and selling another set with the same expiration but at a much lower strike, as a way to offset some of the cost.

“If it is a speculator, they are looking for the stock to go well below $200, but not a lot below $100. They are looking for disaster, but not bankruptcy,” Gottlieb said.

It was not clear if the position was initiated by one trader or several, but Thomson data showed that the contracts have steadily grown in number starting around the beginning of 2017.

For Tesla options in general, elevated levels of volatility and skew – a measure of relative demand for puts versus calls – suggest that options market participants see a rough road ahead for Tesla shares, said Henry Schwartz, president at options analytics firm Trade Alert in New York.

Constellation Brands results beat on higher demand for Mexican beers

( ) – Constellation Brands Inc (STZ.N) reported fourth-quarter sales and profit on Thursday above Wall Street estimates, driven by strong demand for high margin Corona and Modelo beers and expensive wines such as Me上海夜生活论坛iomi.

The boost in demand for Mexican beers is a result of a growing Hispanic population, a demography the company has been focu,夜上海419龙凤论坛Fabi,sing on to widen its consumer base. The strategy helped the company’s sales beat estimates for the third straight year.

The Hispanic population is the second-fastest growing ethnic group in the United States and accounted for 18 percent of the total population in 2016, according to Pew Research Centre.

Beer sales, which accounted for about 77 percent of the net sales in the quarter, rose nearly 12 percent to $997.2 million.

Net sales rose 8.5 percent to $1.77 billion in the quarter, beating the analysts’ estimate of $1.75 billion that the maker of Robert Mondavi wines and SVEDKA vodka was expected to generate.

To cater to the rising demand, Constellation, which imports most of its beers from Mexico, said it would spend $900 million in 2019 to,上海夜生活群Tabitha, expand capacity of its breweries in Ciudad Oberon that lies south of the border.

Constellation shares rose 3 percent on Thursday after the company said it would pay its Class A and Class B shareholders a 42 percent hike in dividend.

The stock is one of the top-performers compared with its peers over the past 12-months, rising nearly 40 percent.

The company is also on a drive to “premiumize” its portfolio and has added Craft beers such as Funky Buddha and Napa Valley winery Schrader Cellars, which sells wines for as much as $250 a bottle.

Constellation on Thursday forecast fiscal 2019 comparable earnings,上海夜网Mabel, per share to be between $9.40 and $9.70. The mid-point was marginally below the Street’s estimate of $9.58.

However, analysts said the company’s forecasts are often conservative and are updated through the year.

Net income attributable to the company more than doubled to $925.5 million, or $4.64 per Class A share, in the quarter ended Feb.28, helped by a $363 million gain due to changes in the U.S. tax law.

Excluding items, the Victor, New-York based company earned $1.90 per share, beating the average analyst estimate of $1.74 per share, according to Thomson I/B/E/S.

Facebook to give users more control over personal information

( ) – Facebook Inc (FB.O) is giving users more control over their privacy by making data management easier and redesigning the settings menu, the company said on Wednesday, in the wake of a scandal over a breach that exposed the personal information of millions and was allegedly used by a political consultancy.

The company,上海夜生活乌托邦Pamela, also said it would propose in the coming weeks updates to the social media website’s terms of service and data policy to better spell out what information it collects and how it uses it.

The company has faced a global outcry after a whistleblower said that data from millions of users was improperly harvested by consultancy Cambridge Analytica to target U.S. and British voters in close-run elections.

Facebook shares are down nearly 18 percent since March 16, when it first acknowledged that user data had been improperly channeled to Cambridge Analytica, eating away nearly $100 billion of the company’s market value.

“We’ve heard loud and clear that privacy settings and other important tools are too hard to find, and that we must do more to keep people informed,” Erin Egan, Facebook’s chief privacy officer, and Ashlie Beringer, its deputy general counsel, said 上海夜网in a statement.

In addition to redesigning its settings menu on mobile devices, Facebook said it is creating a new privacy shortcut menu where users would be able to better secure their accou,上海夜生活网交流Dallas,nts and control personal information. It would also allow users to review and delete data,上海新夜网龙凤Kade, they have shared, including posts and search queries.

Users would be able to download the data shared with Facebook, including uploaded photos, contacts added to their account, and posts on timelines.

Greece’s Aegean Air aims higher with $5 billion Airbus jet order

ATHENS ( ) – Greece’s largest carrier Aegean Airlines (AGNr.AT) picked Airbus (AIR.PA) for an order of 42 aircraft worth $5 billion (4 bill上海夜生活ion euros) to renew its fleet of single-aisle planes and add capacity for future expansion, executives said on Wednesday.

The order is the largest by a Greek carrier and one of the biggest investments by a private Greek company since the country’s debt crisis erupted in 2010.

Seeking to reduce maintenance costs, Aegean, a member of the Star Alliance airline group, had been considering the Airbus A320neo or Boeing’s (BA.N) 737 MAX, with its people working on the project for the last 12 months.

“Today is a very important day for Aegean,” Vice-Chairm,上海夜玩网论坛Octavien,an Eftychios Vassilakis said during a news conference. “We confirmed our commitment to improve our competitiveness by signing a deal for an order of up to 42 aircraft.”

It is the third time in 19 years that the carrier is investing in new airplanes, Vassilakis said, “aiming to offer our passengers the newest and most technologically advanced planes as we remain focused on quality.”

Aegean signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Airbus. It said the agreement included a firm order of 30 aircraft from the A320neo family, with an option of 12 additional jets with new generation engines offering fuel savings of 15 percent.

The agreement was part of a fleet expansion and renewal program expected to take place between 2020 and 2025, Aegean said.

Ten of the 30 jetliners in the firm order will be Airbus A321 neo aircraft – which a,上海夜生活服务Radley,re part of the A320 family of planes – while the remaining 20 would be the slightly smaller A320 neo jets, an Airbus executive said.

“Airbus offers,上海仙霞路夜生活Rachel, a choice of powerplant between CFM Leap and Pratt and Whitney engines,” the executive told , declining to be named. “Boeing’s 737 Max planes come only with CFM Leap engines.”

Aegean’s CEO said the carrier would decide on the type of engine and the mix of planes at a later stage.

“The new airplanes are just the hardware,” said Aegean’s CEO Dimitris Gerogiannis. “It is our people who make the difference, not the metal.”

Aegean, which flies domestic and international routes, also owns former flag carrier Olympic Airlines, which was privatized in 2013. Most of its current leases need to be replaced between 2019 and 2023.

Last year, Aegean grew full-year net earnings by 87 percent on an improved load factor and higher sales, riding a strong tourism year. In 2017 it flew a total of 13.2 million passengers.

(1 euro = $1.2387)

Spotify says about two million users blocked ads without paying

( ) – Spotify Technology SA (SPOT.N) said on Friday it uncovered 2 million users of its free service who had blocked advertising without paying, highlighting a potential revenue risk for the soon-to-be public company.

In an amended version of the share prospectus filed last month, the Swedish company said it continues to be impacted by third-party attempts to gain unauthorized access to its premium service.

The music-streaming company previously included the 2 million users in calculations for some of its ,上海夜生活网交流Fabian,key performance indicators, including MAUs, ad-supported users, content hours, and content hours per MAU. More here

Spotify said it currently does not have the data t上海夜生活论坛o adjust previously provided key performance indicators, and as a result certain metrics may be ‘overstated’ in its prospectus.

The company,上海夜生活Octava, had 157 million active users as of Dec. 31, of which about 71 million were paid subscribers who access ad-free versions of the service, according to its website.

Spotify had filed this week for a direct listing of i,上海夜生活论坛Falkner,ts shares, instead of a traditional IPO.

The direct listing will let investors and employees sell shares without the company raising new capital or hiring a Wall Street bank or broker to underwrite the offering.