Struggling hedge funds cling to dollar, U.S. yield curve bets: McGeever

LONDON () – Hedge funds have struggled badly in 2018, but would be faring far worse were they not on the right side of two of the most reliable trades of the year: a flattening U.S. yield curve and a stronger dollar. FILE PHOTO: United States one dollar bills are seen on a light table at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing in Washington November 14, 2014. /Gary Cameron/File PhotoBoth trends remain in place, and as the latest data show, speculators look like holding onto them for the rest of…

UPDATE 2-EU tells UK’s May: We will not renegotiate the Brexit treaty

THE HAGUE/STRASBOURG () – The European Union ruled out renegotiating the Brexit divorce treaty or its Irish border protocol on Tuesday as Prime Minister Theresa May sought last ditch assurances from the bloc to save her deal after pulling a vote she acknowledged she would lose. European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker addresses the European Parliament during a debate on upcoming EU council meeting, at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France, December 11, 2018. /Vincent KesslerLess than four months until the United Kingdom is due to leave the European Union on…

RPT-Israel likely to allow medical cannabis exports by year-end – senior MP

(Adds Cannbit stock symbol) By Steven Scheer JERUSALEM, Dec 6 () – Israel will likely allow exports of medical cannabis by the end of the year, a top lawmaker said on Thursday, a move that would boost state coffers and slow the growing number of firms establishing farms abroad. Israeli companies – befitting from a favourable climate and expertise in medical and agricultural technologies – are among the world’s biggest producers of medical cannabis. The finance and health ministries estimate exports could bring in about $1 billion a year –…

UPDATE 2-Court rejects Nissan ex-chairman Ghosn’s appeal to end detention

TOKYO () – A Tokyo court on Tuesday rejected ousted Nissan Motor chairman Carlos Ghosn’s appeal to end his detention following his arrest last month on allegations of financial misconduct. FILE PHOTO – Carlos Ghosn, chairman and CEO of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, attends at the Tomorrow In Motion event on the eve of press day at the Paris Auto Show, in Paris, France, October 1, 2018. /Regis Duvignau/File PhotoGhosn has been held in a Tokyo jail since he was arrested on Nov. 19 on suspicion of conspiring to understate his…

Advice to Coventry businesses – from the man headhunted to sort out Northern Rock

The businessman headhunted by the Government to sort out Northern Rock has now returned home to help businesses in Coventry and Warwickshire.Gary Hoffman, who previously held senior positions at Barclays and Barclaycard before recently becoming chair of Hastings Insurance and Coventry Building Society, outlined his advice for businesses in the region to nurture their growth and success. Hoffman, who is also the former vice-chairman for Coventry City Football Club, was brought in by the Government to help stabilise Northern Rock in 2008 and was also on the board of directors…

UK workers get biggest pay rise in a decade

FILE PHOTO: City workers head to work during the morning rush hour in Southwark in central London April 16, 2014. /Toby Melville LONDON, Dec 11 () – British workers had their biggest pay rise in a decade in the three months to October as the country’s strong labour market showed no sign of weakening ahead of Brexit, official figures showed on Tuesday. Average weekly earnings, including bonuses, rose by 3.3 percent on the year, their biggest rise since the three months to July 2008 and comfortably beating a median forecast…

UPDATE 1-China Nov loans top forecasts but other credit gauges at record lows

BEIJING () – China’s banks extended more new loans than expected in November after a sharp drop the previous month, in a sign that recent government pressure on lenders to help struggling smaller firms may be starting to bear fruit. FILE PHOTO: An employee counts Chinese yuan banknotes at a Bank of China branch in Hefei, Anhui province March 10, 2010. /Stringer But several other key credit gauges remained stuck at record lows or fell to new lows, suggesting China’s policymakers will need to step up support efforts soon to…

SE Asia Stocks-Most indexes fall; Philippine shares snap fours days of losses

* Singapore, Malaysia indexes fall for 6th straight session * Malaysia index hits lowest since Jan 2017 * Philippines cbank monetary policy meeting on Thursday By Shanima A Dec 11 () – Philippines shares rose on Tuesday as investors hunted for bargains following four consecutive sessions of decline, while a sell-off continued in most other Southeast Asian stock markets on growing fears around global growth. Philippine shares added 1.4 percent, posting their biggest intraday gain in one week, mostly supported by gains in the industrials and real estate sectors. « The…

UPDATE 2-Royal London to reshuffle top brass as chairman, CEO leave

(Recasts with statement that CEO also leaving) By Shashwat Awasthi Dec 11 () – Britain’s largest mutual insurer Royal London announced the departure of both its chairman and chief executive officer on Tuesday, naming asset management industry veteran Kevin Parry as its new chair and tasking him with finding a new CEO. Chief Executive Phil Loney, who has been at the helm for seven years, will step down at the end of 2019 to concentrate on longstanding charitable interests in the international development sector, the company said in a statement.…

Trade war optimism lifts European shares

(For a live blog on European stocks, type LIVE/ in an Eikon news window) LONDON, Dec 11 () – European shares opened higher on Tuesday as a fresh whiff of optimism over the Sino-U.S. trade dispute lifted sentiment after a burst of political risk and worries about global growth hit world markets during the previous session. The Euro zone STOXXE index was up 0.7 percent at 0838 GMT with Germany’s DAX, the most sensitive to China due to its big exporters, up 0.8 percent. Earlier, Asian shares got a bounce…

EU can help as UK seeks changes to Brexit divorce deal – minister

LONDON, Dec 11 () – Andrea Leadsom, leader of Britain’s lower house of parliament, said on Tuesday the European Union had a history of doing last minute deals as Prime Minister Theresa May sought support from European leaders for changes to her Brexit deal. After she delayed a parliamentary vote on her agreement with the EU she looked set to lose, May on Monday said she wanted to secure further assurances from the European Union on the so-called backstop arrangement in the Brexit deal. “The EU is always in a…

UPDATE 1-Huawei CFO back in Canada court as bail hearing set to wrap

VANCOUVER () – A top executive at Chinese telecoms giant Huawei Technologies [HWT.UL] is set to return to a Vancouver courtroom on Tuesday, as the judge weighs final issues in determining whether she should be freed on bail while awaiting extradition proceedings. Meng Wanzhou, Huawei Technologies Co Ltd’s chief financial officer (CFO), is seen in this undated handout photo obtained by December 6, 2018. Huawei/Handout via Huawei Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou was arrested by Canadian authorities on Dec. 1 at the request of the United States. Tuesday will be…

Hong Kong shares end higher as China-U.S. trade talks continue

* Hang Seng index ends 0.1 pct higher * China Enterprises index HSCE falls 0.3 pct * HSI financial sub-index flat; property sector down 0.1 pct Dec 11 () – Hong Kong stocks clawed back early losses to end higher on Tuesday as Beijing confirmed that it is still in trade talks with Washington, but global anxiety over trade, Brexit and the arrest of a senior Huawei executive limited gains. ** The Hang Seng index ended 0.1 percent higher at 25,771.67 points, while the China Enterprises Index lost 0.3 percent,…

Norway may further tighten regulation on lending to consumers -finmin

OSLO, Dec 11 () – Norway may further tighten its regulation of banks offering high-interest loans to consumers, Finance Minister Siv Jensen told reporters on Tuesday following a meeting with bank executives and industry lobbyists. The country has seen a surge in non-mortgage lending and credit card debt in recent years, and the government is “closely monitoring” developments, the minister said. (Reporting by Camilla Knudsen, writing by Terje Solsvik, editing by Nerijus Adomaitis)Our Standards:The Thomson Trust Principles.

RPT-COLUMN-Tightening U.S. financial conditions to end Fed cycle. And soon: McGeever

(Repeats story with no change to text) By Jamie McGeever LONDON, Dec 10 () – U.S. financial conditions are tightening, a potent mix of a strong dollar, weak stock markets and flat yield curve squeezing the availability of global money that will bring to an end the Fed’s rate-hiking cycle sooner rather later. By some measures, conditions are tighter now than they have been for years and money markets are reacting accordingly. A rate hike later this month is no longer the nailed-on certainty it had been, and even one…

China stocks end higher as Beijing confirms ongoing trade talks

* Shanghai stocks +0.4 pct, blue-chip CSI300 +0.5 pct * Trading volumes low at 10.13 bln shares * Yuan firms despite weaker fixing SHANGHAI, Dec 11 () – China stocks ended higher on Tuesday in very thin trade as Beijing confirmed that it is still in trade talks with Washington, and as investors looked to market support from government policies aimed at countering slowing growth. ** At the close, the Shanghai Composite Index was 0.4 percent higher at 2,594.09 points. About 10.13 billion shares were traded on the Shanghai exchange,…

UPDATE 1-Royal London chairman Pennant-Rea to step down

(Adds background) Dec 11 () – Royal London, Britain’s largest mutual life, pensions and investment firm, said on Tuesday its Chairman Rupert Pennant-Rea will leave at the end of 2018, and be replaced by Standard Life Aberdeen board member Kevin Parry. The company declined to give any details on why Pennant-Rea, a former Deputy Governor of the Bank of England, was leaving. Sky News had reported bit.ly/2PwAQqr on Monday that Parry would be named to succeed Pennant-Rea, who has been chairman since 2013. “Rupert will be getting more involved with…

Nissan ex-chairman Ghosn files complaint for extended detention -Kyodo

FILE PHOTO – Carlos Ghosn, chairman and CEO of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, attends at the Tomorrow In Motion event on the eve of press day at the Paris Auto Show, in Paris, France, October 1, 2018. /Regis Duvignau/File PhotoTOKYO () – Carlos Ghosn, the former chairman of Nissan Motor, has filed a complaint with the Tokyo District Court to protest its decision to keep him detained until Dec. 20 after his arrest on suspicion of financial misconduct, Kyodo News reported. The court on Tuesday approved Ghosn’s detention for 10 days…

UPDATE 2-Three broker-dealers settle SEC charges over incomplete data

Traders work at the Citadel Securities post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, U.S., July 18, 2016. /Brendan McDermid() – Broker-dealers Citadel Securities, Natixis Securities Americas LLC and MUFG Securities Americas Inc agreed to pay total penalties of more than $6 million to settle charges of providing incomplete trading data, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) said on Monday. Citadel were charged with submitting incorrect data for nearly 80 million trades while Natixis and MUFG were accused of submitting incorrect data…

UPDATE 1-Indian markets slide after c.bank chief quits; state vote outcome in focus

(Adds details, background, quotes) By Swati Bhat MUMBAI, Dec 11 () – Indian markets plunged early on Tuesday before recovering some ground as Reserve Bank of India Governor Urjit Patel’s unexpected resignation on Monday shocked investors. For further direction traders were cautiously awaiting results from crucial state elections due later on Tuesday. Patel’s resignation came after a month-long tussle over policy with the government that has raised concerns about the central bank’s independence as a national election nears. Government officials had been pressuring the RBI to allow some public sector…

China mainland shares edge higher in thin trade; Hong Kong down

* SSEC +0.3 pct, CSI300 +0.3 pct, HSI -0.1 pct * Guodu Securities analysts see “positive changes” in market * Yuan firms despite weak fixing SHANGHAI, Dec 11 () – Shares in China rebounded cautiously on Tuesday morning in thin trade as investors look to government policies to support markets and counter signs of slowing domestic growth amid a weakening of global risk appetite. ** At the midday break, the Shanghai Composite Index was 0.3 percent higher at 2,591.75. Trade volumes have been relatively light, with 5.76 billion shares traded…

China aims to have 450 airports by 2035 – aviation regulator

BEIJING () – China aims to have 450 airports by 2035, almost doubling its current number of airports as part of the country’s ambition to build itself into an aviation power, its aviation regulator said. The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) made the forecast on Monday, according to a report by the CAAC News which is affiliated to the regulator. As of end-October, China had 234 civil airports, according to state media. China is expected to overtake the United States as the world’s largest aviation market in the next…

Indian rupee, bonds slump after cenbank governor’s resignation

MUMBAI, Dec 11 () – India’s rupee and bonds plunged following Reserve Bank of India Governor Urjit Patel’s unexpected resignation after market hours on Monday shocked investors. Concerns about likely mixed results from crucial state elections later on Tuesday also kept traders wary. The Indian rupee came off earlier lows at 72.1350 to the dollar after opening at 72.46, but was sharply lower from its close of 71.35 on Monday. The 10-year benchmark bond yield rose to 7.64 percent from 7.59 percent at the previous close. The broader NSE stock…

UPDATE 1-Three broker-dealers settle SEC charges over incomplete data

Traders work at the Citadel Securities post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, U.S., July 18, 2016. /Brendan McDermid() – Broker-dealers Citadel Securities, Natixis Securities Americas LLC and MUFG Securities Americas Inc agreed to pay total penalties of more than $6 million to settle charges of providing incomplete trading data, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) said on Monday. Citadel were charged with submitting incorrect data for nearly 80 million trades while Natixis and MUFG were accused of submitting incorrect data…

CORRECTED-Magnitude 7.1 quake hits close to Antarctica -USGS

() – A magnitude 7.1 quake struck on Monday in the southern Atlantic Ocean, close to the South Sandwich Islands north of Antarctica, the U.S. Geological Survey said. The quake, initially reported as a magnitude 7.5, was in a remote area and fairly deep underground. The U.S. Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said in an advisory that it did not cause a tsunami threat. (The story corrects name of the ocean in first paragraph) Reporting by Sandra Maler in Washington; Editing by Peter CooneyOur Standards:The Thomson Trust Principles.

Australia shares off 2-year low in choppy trade; NZ up

* Healthcare stocks bounce back * Oil-related shares take a hit * QBE Insurance top loser in finance index By Aby Jose Koilparambil Dec 11 () – Australian shares on Tuesday hovered not far from nearly two-year lows struck the previous day due to Sino-U.S. trade war worries, with gains in the healthcare sector offset by losses in energy stocks. The S&P/ASX 200 index pared early gains to trade 0.04 percent up at 5,554.60 by 0100 GMT after rising as much as 0.6 percent earlier in the session. The benchmark…

UPDATE 7-Canadian court weighs bail for jailed CFO of China’s Huawei

VANCOUVER () – A Canadian provincial court weighing whether to grant bail to a top executive of Chinese telecoms giant Huawei Technologies [HWT.UL], who is facing possible extradition to the United States, adjourned on Monday without deciding her fate. Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou (L), who was arrested on an extradition warrant, appears at her B.C. Supreme Court bail hearing in a drawing in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada December 10, 2018. /Jane Wolsak U.S. prosecutors want Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou to be extradited to face accusations she misled multinational banks…

RPT-COLUMN-Oil traders focus on deteriorating economic outlook rather than OPEC: Kemp

(Repeats with no changes. John Kemp is a market analyst. The views expressed are his own) * Chartbook: tmsnrt.rs/2PtIemz By John Kemp LONDON, Dec 10 () – The weakening outlook for oil consumption coupled with rising output from U.S. shale and softer than expected U.S. sanctions on Iran have convinced most traders the market is moving into a period of oversupply. In the run up to last week’s OPEC meeting in Vienna, hedge fund managers had little confidence in the organisation’s ability to cut production by enough to avoid an…

REFILE-Australia shares set to rebound; NZ up

(Adds dateline) Dec 11 () – Australian shares were poised to open higher on Tuesday, recovering from previous session’s steep losses primarily over the lingering trade tensions between United States and China. The local share price index futures rose 0.5 percent to 5,581, a 28.5-point premium to the underlying S&P/ASX 200 index close. The benchmark closed near two-year lows on Monday as investors turned risk-averse on concerns over U.S.-China trade tensions and slowing global growth, with the healthcare and financial indexes clocking the biggest losses. New Zealand’s benchmark S&P/NZX 50…

UPDATE 3-Banco BPM reaches bad loan deal with Credito Fondiario, Elliott

MILAN () – Banco BPM (BAMI.MI) said on Monday it had agreed to sell up to 7.8 billion euros ($8.9 billion) in bad loans along with a stake in its debt recovery business to Credito Fondiario and U.S. fund Elliott, confirming what sources previously told . The sale will allow Banco BPM to reduce its problem loan ratio to as low as 10.6 percent of total lending from 15.9 percent at the end of September, putting to rest concerns the bank may need to raise capital to clean up its…