Wednesday 3rd September 2014
TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 2ND TICKER: Total combined assets of the world’s largest 300 pension funds grew by over 6% in 2013 (compared to around 10% in 2012) to reach a new high of almost $15trn, according to new research from Towers Watson - Barclays Bank will sell part of its Spanish business for £633m to the country's third largest lender CaixaBank - The number of suspicious transactions reported to the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is up by 28% since the regulator came into power - Last week UK equities indices rose with the FTSE 100 up 0.70%. The FTSE 250 was flat 0.00%; and the FTSE All-Share was up 0.60%. - A committee of global regulators has endorsed LuxCSD as a Pre-Local Operating Unit (LOU) to issue Legal Entity Identifiers (LEIs) - Investment firm Ashmore has launched three new SICAV structured funds offering access to local Chinese markets - Swedbank is set to join a new market making programme designed to increase liquidity on the Baltic market.

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Key Stories from FTSE Global Markets

Negative events in July could not but have an impact on the primary debt market. The sanctions imposed by Europe and the USA against major Russian banks and companies have led to the sale of Russian assets and negated the issuers’ activity this summer. Ministry of Finance and regions, which placed successfully in June and early July, refused to attract financing at high rates in the second half of the month. Corporate borrowers in view of the changes in legislation have also been forced to postpone the placement. The few issuers who managed to enter the market were the ones who prepared issue documents in advance and who ventured to test the new issue format.


Over the last decade, there has been a significant improvement in the securities trade execution times. These times have decreased to micro seconds and advances in technologies such as laser link are trying to further reduce the times. However, the settlement of the executed trade takes days to exchange cash for securities. Depending on the type of security and trading venue, the settlement day will differ. Rakesh Jangili, senior consultant, Capital Markets Solutions Group, Virtusa, looks at the settlement cycles of different markets and assesses the likelihood of harmonisation of settlement cycles across the globe.

Monday, 04 August 2014

A cultural shift to compliance

Since its formation in 2013, the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority has made it clear that it is less interested in routine compliance processes. The FCA’s focus is now on how a firm’s compliance department or senior management team, training and competence (T&C) programmes and broader compliance culture deliver the best customer experience and market outcomes, writes Neil Herbert, director of HRComply.


Bucking the perception that cheaper funds fetch the fattest returns, higher-priced active managers—who strive to beat benchmark indices using a hand-picked mix of assets—have been forced to sharpen their skills to prove that investors really can get what they pay for over the long haul. From Boston, Dave Simons reports.

Monday, 04 August 2014

Investing in the good earth

After years of being in the margins, climate change is finally having its day on the page thanks mainly to President Barack Obama’s vocal support for the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) announcement that it would propose limits on carbon emissions from power plants. Climate change industry supporters have been waiting years for the US to take the lead in the climate change management debate and in June their wish was granted; particularly as other high carbon emitters, such as China are now firmly on the emissions capping bandwagon. Has the new found enthusiasm for the wellbeing of the Earth come just in time or too late to really make a difference? If climate change can be delayed or averted, which firms are in the front line to benefit from a more munificent approach to climate change management by G20 governments? Lynn Strongin Dodds reports on the hope and the glory.


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