Briefings

Archive November 2021

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Week InReview: November 26, 2021

O-M-Gee.
 
Mad Dog Jones’ SHIFT// goes on view as part of ‘Natively Digital: A Curated NFT Sale’ at Sotheby's in London in June. Photo: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images for Sotheby's
 
COLLINS DICTIONARY declared NFT its 2021 word of the year in recognition of the convergence of money, tech, and art.
 
Unsurprisingly, other words making the Collins shortlist included metaverse, crypto, and double-vaxxed.
 
— Bloomberg Pursuits

Week InAdvance: November 22, 2021

Mon Nov 22 Basel Institute on Governance virtual training. | Tue Nov 23 IOSCO review of margining practices. | Wed Nov 24 FOMC minutes. | Thu Nov 25 U.S. Thanksgiving Day: U.S. equity, bond markets closed. | Fri Nov 26 Black Friday with lower discounts amid supply-chain pressures.
 
Before the Thanksgiving holiday on Nov. 25, U.S. President Joe Biden is expected to announce his nominee for the Federal Reserve chair. Jerome Powell, who has been in the job since 2018, remains the betting-market favorite to continue in the role, but the odds for board member Lael Brainard have increased. 
 
PMI data for the U.S. and the Euro-zone will be announced on Tuesday. Manufacturers are dealing with rising costs amid supply-chain constraints and are passing the pain onto consumers. Meanwhile, the services industry, which has become Europe’s growth engine, faces a fresh wave of Covid-19 infections.
 
Black Friday deals, unlike in previous years, are shaping up to be underwhelming in 2021 as demand swamps supply. Seasonal discounts on sporting goods and appliances will be lower than last year, according to Adobe, amid tight inventories, robust consumer spending and rising inflation. 

Week InReview: November 19, 2021

Cutting to the chase.
 
(Nov 17) — Financial regulators [met] on Wednesday to address recent wild price swings in the U.S. Treasury market, presumably to find out why markets all of a sudden aren’t working properly. But traders say that, once again, rules created in Washington are having unforeseen consequences.
 
The Volcker rule which limited banks from taking large proprietary positions limits the amount of risk and, therefore, the amount of inventory banks can keep on their books. In times of QE, that’s no problem, the more supply the better. Bonds just kept going up as the Fed kept the cash coming.
 
But now, partly because of rising inflation expectations and partly because of the start of tapering, bonds have been falling and traders can’t hold and trade them the way they used to. Frankly, given the biggest buyer of bonds since the financial crisis is slowing purchases, why would anyone else want them? The Fed not buying bonds is defacto selling.
 
This is the regulatory agencies’ own doing and creating more rules to fix broken rules is not likely to help. Prices are volatile as traders try to trade the timing of the next rate hike. And if a central bank is eventually going to be trimming their balance sheet and removing liquidity it probably isn’t too smart to take them on. I tried it with the BOJ once in the 80’s, it did not end well.
 
Vincent Cignarella
— Bloomberg

Week InAdvance: November 15, 2021

Mon Nov 15 Hedge funds disclose third-quarter investments in 13F filings. | Tue Nov 16 U.S. retail sales. | Wed Nov 17 SEC meets on proxy rule amendments. Joint Member Agencies to hold Treasury Market Conference. | Thu Nov 18 SF Fed's Asia econ policy conference.

Week InReview: November 12, 2021

The Grinch That Stole New Year's.
 
THANKS TO whoever created an obscure piece of New York Stock Exchange red tape – officially known as Rule 7.2 – U.S. equity markets won’t commemorate the start of 2022 with a holiday. 
 
The rule stipulates that when a holiday falls on a Saturday, the market will close on the preceding Friday — unless, that is, “unusual business conditions exist, such as the ending of a monthly or yearly accounting period.” Since Dec. 31 marks the end of the month, quarter and year, that means a full session on New Year’s Eve and no day off on the following Monday. 
 
 — Bloomberg Markets

Week InAdvance: November 8, 2021

Mon Nov 8 U.S. opens to vaccinated travelers. Gender forum at the Fed. Basel Committee meets. | Tue Nov 9 Diversity & inclusion forum at the Fed. Global cybersecurity meeting. | Wed Nov 10 'The Great Narrative' meeting in Dubai. U.S. CPI data. | Thu Nov 11 U.S. bond market closed in observance of Veterans Day. Paris Peace Forum. Singles' Day in China. | Fri Nov 12 Final day of the UN COP26 Conference in Glasgow.

Week InReview: November 5, 2021

Do you have a minute?
 
Illustration: Anders Wenngren/WSJ
 
YOU'RE BACK at the office. How are you supposed to get any work done? There are in-person meetings and intractable video calls clogging your calendar. Your commute has eaten the hour you once used to corral your inbox. And everyone wants to say hi. There’s this slow drip of half-baked conversations. ‘Do you have a minute?' 'Do you have a minute? 'Do you have a minute?’
 
The problem is when we’re just using our brain it looks like we’re not doing anything. You need a signal that tells your colleagues: 'Really, I’m working.' Close the door if you have one, put on headphones, attach a flag to your cubicle and flip it up when you’re heads-down on a project.
 
— The Wall Street Journal

Week InAdvance: November 1, 2021

Mon Nov 1 COP26 in Glasgow. | Tue Nov 2 Senate Banking holds Libor hearing. | Wed Nov 3 SEC AMAC meets. FOMC rate decision. | Thu Nov 4 OPEC+ meeting on output. | Fri Nov 5 U.S. jobs report. Basel Committee meets.
 

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