Archive February 2018
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Week InAdvance: February 26, 2018
Week InReview: February 23, 2018
"Two decades after the great Beanie Baby boom, where old and young hit Hallmark stores around the country in search of rare examples, the speculators are back, living in an alternate Beanie reality.
"Some on eBay insist that their rare Beanies, with mistakes in the tags, from a specific generation or with PVC beads as their fillings instead of the more common polyethylene, are worth tens of thousands of dollars.
"Such dreams are crushed for anyone calling Rogue Toys, a collectibles store with branches in Las Vegas and Portland, Ore. The store's answering machine specifically says the store doesn't want to buy your Beanies."
- The Wall Street Journal
Week InAdvance: February 20, 2018
Week In Review: February 16, 2018
"In the past, pension funds, endowments and family offices pursued relatively safe investments. After interest rates collapsed on the heels of the financial crisis, they ran into challenges paying pensioners and filling university budgets, and added riskier bets on hedge funds and venture capital in the hopes of winning better returns.
"More recently, some of these investors also made big, unpublicized wagers seeking to benefit from what had been an unusually long period of low volatility, according to pension-fund consultants and others who deal with these institutions. The strategies, often involving the writing of complicated options contracts, were for years a source of easy money. Markets hadn't been so calm since the 1950s."
- The Wall Street Journal
Week InAdvance: February 12, 2018
Week InReview: February 9, 2018
Spotlight is on ETF problem children after volatility blowup -
More than 400 ETPs use derivatives to generate outsized returns; 'the greatest disasters in finance made the same mistakes' (Feb 8)
A map to the underworld: $2 trillion of volatility trades here -
Products tied to market swings put in spotlight amid selloff; inverse VIX ETPs grew in popularity with short-vol trade (Feb 7)
A warning sign behind the market swings -
The economy is still abnormally dependent on low interest rates and richly priced assets (Feb 7)
Bond market's debt-ceiling alarm bell is ringing loud and clear -
In the $2 trillion Treasury-bill market, where the U.S. government turns for short-term funding, investors are showing they're plenty nervous about the approaching deadline to raise the nation's debt ceiling (Feb 4)
This SEC rule makes no sense for big banks -
The automatic bar from private placements is a wild non sequitur (Feb 4)
Week InAdvance: February 5, 2018
Week InReview: February 2, 2018
Leverage is back: Wall Street takes cues from hands-off feds
"If the cops say you can have open containers in Central Park, what do you think is going to happen," said Richard Farley, who runs the leveraged-finance practice at Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP (Feb 2)