Thursday 11th February 2016
NEWS TICKER: February 11th 2016: The Lyxor Hedge Fund Index was down -0.9% in January. 5 out of 11 Lyxor Indices ended the month in positive territory. The Lyxor CTA Long Term Index (+2.2%), the Lyxor Global Macro Index (+0.7%), and the Lyxor Fixed Income Arbitrage Index (+0.7%) were the best performers, says the ETF major. Hedge Funds displayed esilience in January. Both markets and analysts started the year with reasonable growth expectations. These were aggressively revised down, triggered by the release of the disappointing Chinese PMI and the CNY depreciation. Strikingly, investors started to price in more serious odds for a Chinese hard landing, the growing central banks’ impotence, the risk of a US recession, and the return of global deflation. Lyxor says, in that context, CTAs thrived on their short commodities and long bond exposures. FI Arbitrage and Global Macro funds exploited monetary relative and tactical opportunities. To the exception of the L/S Equity Long Bias and Special Situations funds – hit on their beta - the other strategies managed to deliver flat to modestly negative returns - Why did investors think that the US Fed would raise rates in this jittery global market? Investors shed stocks in Asia today, on the back of what was a reasonable statement to the House of Representatives Finance Committee, that the US central bank would remain cautious on future rate hikes. According to Swissquote analysts, “Recent market turmoil and uncertainties surrounding China’s growth prospect could weigh on US growth if proven persistent. A few days ago, Stanley Fisher, Fed Vice Chairman, also delivered a cautious speech reminding us that Fed policy will remain data dependent and that it was too soon to tell whether the current market conditions will prevent the Fed from moving on with its rate cycle”. The global mood among central banks is towards an accommodative rather than tightening monetary policy: this was a theme that investors applauded last year and only last month as the ECB signalled a continuation of its policy, but it wasn’t what Wall Street wanted to hear and early gains lost out to negative sentiment and the US markets ended lower for four days in a row. The real worry of course is that ultra-loose monetary policy signals the fears of central bankers that the global economy continues to wind downwards and that consideration is fueling investor fears. Asia’s trading story has been writ in stone for the last few weeks with havens such as gold, the yen and government bonds the main beneficiaries of continued investor jitters. In commodities, Brent crude oil was down 1.3% at $30.43, while WTI crude futures fell 2.7% to $26.70, despite a drawdown in US stockpiles. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index fell 3.9%, catching up with the week's selloff as the market reopened from a holiday. South Korea’s Kospi ended the day down 2.93%, while in Singapore the STI fell 0.77%. Japan's market and China's Shanghai Composite Index were both closed. The dollar was down 1.8% against the yen at ¥ 111.28, a sixteen-month low for the dollar against the Japanese currency. In other currencies, the euro was up 0.4% against the dollar at $1.1325, its highest since October. Spot gold in London gained 1.1% to $1218.18 a troy ounce, its highest level since May. In focus today, will likely be the Swedish Riskbank policy decision, with expectations for already negative rates to go even lower. “Markets may like cheap money for longer but they definitely don’t like the idea of a major market turn-down and another recession, hence discussion about need for US negative rates sapping risk appetite overnight. Note Janet Yellen testifying again today, although yesterday likely saw the most important information already discussed,” says Accendo Markets analysts.

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Mukhtar Ablyazov associate imprisoned, $5bn civil litigation ongoing

Tuesday, 14 August 2012
Mukhtar Ablyazov associate imprisoned, $5bn civil litigation ongoing On August 10th a Cypriot court sentenced British citizen, Paul Kythreotis, to 2 months in prison for contempt of court. Mr. Kythreotis is an associate of Mukhtar Ablyazov, former chairman of Kazakstan’s BTA Bank, who is accused of misappropriating BTA funds totalling around $10bn during his time at the bank. http://www.ftseglobalmarkets.com/

On August 10th a Cypriot court sentenced British citizen, Paul Kythreotis, to 2 months in prison for contempt of court. Mr. Kythreotis is an associate of Mukhtar Ablyazov, former chairman of Kazakstan’s BTA Bank, who is accused of misappropriating BTA funds totalling around $10bn during his time at the bank.

Kythreotis was the subject of a July 2010 English High Court order instructing him to disclose details of his assets as part of a world-wide freezing order. He failed to disclose information concerning over $68m of his personal assets, and also refused to comply with the request to provide information on a further $295m of BTA Bank assets alleged to have been misappropriated by himself, Mr. Ablyazov and other associates. He also later admitted to supplying the English court with false information. He was susequently found guilty of contempt of court and sentenced to 21 months imprisonment.

Mr.Kytherios has avoided serving his sentence by refusing to return to the UK, however BTA bank were able to successfully pursue action against him through the Cypriot legal system, where he currently resides. Despite currently residing in a Cypriot prison the English judgement and corresponding 21-month sentence remain outstanding.



Pavel Prosyankin, BTA Bank managing director, welcomed the judgement and reaffirmed the bank’s commitment to seek redress from Mr.Ablyazov and his associates, whom they allege to have misappropriated billions of dollars of funds during his tenure as chairman.

BTA Bank has launched 9 civil cases through the English High Court as a part of its restructuring agreement with creditors to recover missing assets. The proceedings were filed against Ablyazov and his associates- including Kytherios- shortly after his 2009 arrival in London. Somewhat Ironically, Ablyazov had applied for UK asylum on arrival to the UK, citing politically motivated persecution as the cause of his flight from Kazakhstan. In the early stages of the litigation, the English courts froze his assets and held his passports to prevent him fleeing the jurisdiction. However, Ablyazov subsequently fled the UK after the High Court sentenced him to prison in February 2012 and is now in hiding- his location is currently unknown.

He also has a 22-month contempt of court sentence against his name, and Justice Teare, presiding, has taken the unusual step of issuing Mr. Ablyazov an "unless order"- meaning that he will not be able to defend BTA’s suits against him should he continue to fail to comply with the outstanding court order against him. He has appealed both judgements through his lawyers, with a verdict expected in October.

Sources close to the bank have stated, "The bank’s main priority is to protect the assets [that they believe Ablyazov has misappropriated] through all legal channels so they can be returned to the bank and creditors. Ablyazov’s assets were put into receivership to prevent them from being removed or hidden, but there has been evidence that assets were improperly dealt with since then, so the bank sought and won a committal action."

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