Top Headlines

Abe Warns on Lehman-Era Crisis Signals – fastFT (subscription)

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe warned leaders at the G7 summit that several indicators–namely commodities prices and the growth rate of emerging markets–are at levels seen before the financial crisis in 2008, the Nikkei website reported Thursday.

Injunction Halts Trading at Futex – Profit & Loss

Trading at the UK-based proprietary trading firm, Futex, has allegedly been halted following an injunction against it, according to market sources.

China Warns G7 Not to ‘Escalate Tensions’ in Asia – FT (subscription)

China’s foreign minister fired a pre-emptive shot at G7 leaders gathering in Japan on Thursday, warning them not to “escalate tensions” over territorial disputes in the South and East China Seas.

State Department Report Slams Clinton Email Use – CNN

A State Department Inspector General report said former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton failed to follow the rules or inform key department staff regarding her use of a private email server, according to a copy of the report obtained by CNN on Wednesday.

China Says EU Membership UK’s Choice, but Hopes for Strong Europe – Reuters

Britain must decide for itself whether it stays in the European Union, but China hopes to see a strong Europe that contributes to the global economy, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on Thursday ahead of Britain’s June 23 EU membership referendum.

Pentagon Still Using Floppy Discs for Nuclear Operations – The Times (subscription)

The Pentagon is still using floppy discs designed in the 1970s for some of its nuclear force’s functions, a government watchdog has uncovered.

Company News

Spain’s Banco Popular to Raise up to 2.5 Bln Euros to Reinforce Accounts – Reuters

Spain’s sixth-largest lender Banco Popular said on Thursday it plans to issue around 2 billion new shares at 1.25 euros ($1.40) per share to strengthen its balance sheet, improve profitability and protect its dividend.

Dong Energy Sets Out IPO Pricing – fastFT (subscription)

Dong Energy has set out a price range for its stock market listing, expected to be one of Europe’s biggest this year, which values the Danish energy group at up to DKr106.5bn ($16bn).

Market Savvy

Asia FX Pessimism Deepens on Fed Rate Hike View, China Uncertainty – Reuters

Bearish sentiment toward emerging Asian currencies deepened in the last two weeks as speculation of an imminent U.S. interest rate hike grew and as confusion flared again over China’s foreign exchange policy, a Reuters poll showed on Thursday.

No Joy Division for FX Banks as New Order Emerges – Profit & Loss

For many years, people have predicted that a new breed of non-bank market maker was emerging in FX. And for as many years, many have predicted that as a result the banks would lose their dominance of the market. My view has long been that such assertions were complete nonsense.

Yen Soars as Jittery Markets await Yellen, Japan Tax Decision – Reuters

The yen surged on Thursday, taking some of the wind out of the sails of the recently buoyant dollar and prompting investors to cover positions against a backdrop of potential event risks, including a speech by Federal Reserve chief Janet Yellen.

Brent Oil Pushes Above $50 for First Time in Nearly Seven Months – Reuters

Brent oil futures climbed above $50 a barrel on Thursday for the first time in nearly seven months, boosted after U.S. government figures showed a sharper-than-expected drawdown in crude stocks last week.

Hedge Funds May Lose 25% of Assets, Blackstone’s James Says – Bloomberg

The $2.9 trillion hedge-fund industry may lose about a quarter of its assets in the next year as performance slumps, said Tony James, Blackstone Group LP’s billionaire president.

Bring On the Currency War – Bloomberg

The US government seems concerned about what will happen if other big nations push down the value of their currencies against the dollar. Actually, it could be good for the global economy.

Saudi Devaluation Bets Show Foreign Banks More Wary Than Locals – Bloomberg

Contracts used to bet on a devaluation of Saudi Arabia’s currency are diverging between local and international banks, as global lenders become less willing to trade with those in the kingdom.

Regulatory News

Citi Traders’ 2008 Manipulations Revealed – FT (subscription)

As Citigroup became the latest big bank to pay a fine over the attempted manipulation of Libor, the US regulator’s investigation revealed embarrassing evidence about the behaviour of its traders during the financial crisis.

The Currency Ethicist: One Man’s Push to Fix a Tarnished Market – Bloomberg

What David Puth has seen in 35 years in the currency markets hasn’t always been pretty.

Alibaba Discloses SEC Probe of Its Accounting Practices – WSJ

Federal regulators are investigating the accounting practices of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., the e-commerce giant whose blockbuster U.S. stock-market debut helped win a wide following for Chinese tech firms.

Wall Street Crime: 7 Years, 156 Cases and Few Convictions – WSJ (subscription)

Gary Heinz is little known on Wall Street, but he belongs to a select club.