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Weekend Scan: Fed meets to set rates; Fedex reports quarterly earnings
Capital Markets
<p>The top news of the week won't come until Thursday afternoon, when the Federal Reserve will reveal its latest interest rate policy. Until then, market watchers will have the earnings of Fedex to chew on. The air freight company is considered a bellwether of the economy. The Estimize consensus for the fiscal first quarter: $2.46/share, up fro $2.10 a year earlier, on revenues  of $12.273 billion, up from $11.7 billion in 2014.</p> <p>Will they or won't they? The Federal Reserve Board meets  on Sep 16-17; Chair Janet Yellen will hold a news conference after the release of the FOMC policy statement at 2:00 p.m. ET. Markets are split on whether the Fed will hike interest rates 25 basis points, the first hike since 2008. The economy is expanding and job formation looks good. But the dollar is strong and China is faltering and various economic data in the U.S. continue to disappoint. What's a central bank to do? The move, if it comes, would pack a powerful psychological punch even though interest rates remain abnormally low.</p> <p>Germany initiates temporary border controls. The Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere said migrants couldn't choose their places of refuge and began enforcing border controls with Austria after 13,000 migrants arrived on Saturday. Germany is expecting 800,000 migrants this year. BBC</p> <p> Flavia Pennetta wins women's grand slam. The Italian player snagged her first Grand Slam and announced her retirement. The No. 26 seed defeated Serena Williams in a stunning upset to advance to the finals. MarketWatch</p> <p>Died: Moses Malone, NBA Hall of Famer.  At the age of 60. Known as "Chairman of the Boards," Malone was a three-time MVP winner. Wall Street Journal (paywall)<br /> You won't believe this:<br /> The secret sex life of a feared al Qaeda operative. Anwar al-Awlaki, the American-born jihadist, preached strict Islam but the FBI caught him again and again patronizing prostitutes. After Osama bin Laden, he was one of the most feared al Qaeda leaders.  New York Post</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Photo: Brooking Institute</p>
Barclays to allow charities to accept bitcoin -- but why?
<p>British bank Barclays has announced that it would allow charities to accept bitcoin, reports Coindesk.</p> <p>Banks have been jumping into bitcoin as some kind of savior for financial services and the monetary system. Banks, the ultimate intermediary, are hawking the anti-intermediary.</p> <p>But the truth is, they just haven't found any really great uses for it yet. The best case for it so far has been Silk Road. And, well, we know where that led. Argentina is another case where bitcoin is gaining traction -- the monetary unit there is so subject to inflation, who would want to hold it for more than a nanosecond?</p> <p>It's just not clear why a donor would prefer to donate to a charity via bitcoin. Does anyone have any thoughts?<br /> Photo: Antana</p>
A walk down memory lane: New York 1977-82, a carefree time
Lifestyle, 4:01
<p>&nbsp;</p> <p>This Sunday’s NY Times Magazine has articles on nostalgia for the period 1977-1982 (roughly). The pieces are all about the arts and gay life and the interesting turmoil before the origins of AIDS were well understood.</p> <p>But that side of NYC ignores the majority of us who, even though interested in and diverted by the arts scene, worked in office buildings as accountants, lawyers, bankers, ad people, and business managers. Some of us remember the time fondly for different reasons than the artists that The Times depicts. (Personal confession: I was in my 30s, in love, lived in Manhattan, and had a good job, so what was not to like?)</p> <p>From an economic point of view—particularly the economics that impacts one’s life and work, 1977 to 1982 was a unique time. NYC had required state assistance to pay its debts in 1976. The City’s elites therefore had lost some swagger. Hugh Carey had come to office as Governor, oddly not knowing how the machine had worked under Nelson Rockefeller, and uncertainty reigned. Abe Beame, a nice little man, had been mayor from 1974 to 1977. He had been ineffectual and was replaced by the bumptious Ed Koch, who seemed to give N’Yorkers renewed optimism.</p> <p>Nevertheless, stagflation reigned in the nation, and Jimmy Carter appeared incapable of dealing that or with the standoff in Iran. He used the word economic “malaise”.</p> <p>In context, things did not seem right economically, and neither the city nor the nation was booming. But important things were happening nevertheless, especially in the field of women’s rights, where women were moving forward both socially and in the workplace, at unprecedented speed. There were all kinds of pushes and pulls within the women’s movement, but its power and thrust were the symbols of the late 1970s.</p> <p>For those of us out in the world earning a living and coming home to our families, it was an ambiguous time. For families living in the suburbs and commuting, it was the beginning of the time of prevalent divorce and family break-up. For those who, like me, went through that process early, it was a time when love could be found everywhere. AIDS was not yet a significant restriction, harassment in the workplace did not include consensual sex or flirting that might lead to it, and offices often were more congenial and less competitive places.</p> <p>Work ended around 6 or 7 pm most days for most people. No one carried a cell phone or pda. There was time for love or family—or even a hobby, perhaps. Most of us did not make as much money as we would make after 1982, but the pressure of work was less.</p> <p>The blackout of 1977 is remembered for the violence in a few neighborhoods, but in most neighborhoods, it was a time of cooperation, not looting. The Indian guy who ran our corner store stayed open late and sold every flashlight, battery, etc., he had—at regular prices, no gouging.</p> <p>1982 indeed was a transformational year. It was the year that greed become fashionable and changed NY. The Reagan Administration favored greed, in August the stock market, after close to a decade of doldrums, took off upwards, and greed was in the air everywhere. Law firm partnerships stopped being as congenial, workplaces became more cut-throat. As I told a client over dinner one evening that year, ‘The Great God Mammon is on the loose.”</p> <p>In retrospect, I guess I was right. And mammon has been more influential ever since.</p> <p>The bookends of the assistance for NYC and the blackout on one end, and the ascendancy of Mammon, fear of AIDS, and sexual harassment restrictions in the workplace on the other, made 1977-1982 a special little time. And those of us who were in love in tho</p>
NFL players get financial advice from Morgan Stanley
Lifestyle, 4:01
<p>Not everyone can be Tom Brady, in looks, skill, or paycheck.</p> <p>For the less fortunate pro-football players, it pays (literally) to be financially savvy. A player on an NFL practice squad makes a minimum salary of $6,600 per week during the 17-week regular season, reports Markets Wired. An annual salary of $112,200 isn't bad, but NFL players can get cut during the season without guarantees. And being on a practice squad is no long term career path.</p> <p>Morgan Stanley and former athletes Bart Scott and Antoine Walker have started a financial education program explicitly for pro-athletes looking for a little guidance. Financial education is important for anyone, but it's key for young athletes and prospects not ready for careers that typically last less than four years, says Drew Hawkins, managing director and head of Morgan Stanley's Global Sports &amp; Entertainment division. A six-figure paycheck is huge for a young 20-something, until it's gone before he's 30. Teams agree. The Seattle Seahawks, Jackson Jaguars, and some NCAA programs are already partnered with the wealth management firm to guide their players.<br /> Photo: Thomson20192</p>
Nouriel Roubini would like to soothe weary Fashion Weekers in his brand new hot tub
Lifestyle, 4:01
<p>Nouriel Roubini has always been known as a ladies’ man. His old Tribeca loft was decorated with plaster vulvas and he once told the New York mag that he was “a 10 girls to one” kinda guy.</p> <p>Things have changed in the past few years however. New York City’s Department of Buildings forced him to remove his giant rooftop hot tub – ending an era of al fresco hijinx for him – and his legendary bacchanalias have mysteriously kept off the rags.</p> <p>He has a new tub now though, as well as a pretty clever way to lure him some fun, according to Page Six:<br /> “Dr. Doom” Nouriel Roubini, who is equally known for his model-packed hot tub parties at his Manhattan apartment as for his market predictions, is generously offering his pad for soothing “special meditation sessions” — plus a dip in the tub — during New York Fashion Week.</p> <p>Famed economist Roubini — whose boisterous hot tub bacchanals have been a steaming source of anger for his East Village neighbors — will be hosting a meditation session with the Path at his triplex penthouse on Tuesday, followed by a promised plunge in his hallowed Jacuzzi.</p> <p>According to an e-mail sent out by the Path, which teaches ancient meditation techniques, “The sit will take place at sunset, and everyone who joins will be invited to stay after to enjoy gorgeous views and a new rooftop hot tub.”<br /> Oh, and he wants you to pay $20 for the pleasure too.<br /> Photo: International Monetary Fund</p>
Celebrities join Cantor and BGC in remembering 9/11
Lifestyle, 4:01
<p>Cantor Fitzgerald and BGC Partners hosted their annual Charity Day last Friday and while you might think red carpet events attract celebrities, this was something else.</p> <p>Margot Robbie, 50 Cent, and A-rod were among the many A-listers who manned the phones and took trades in New York, while over in London, Emilia Clarke, Tom Hardy, and Samuel L. Jackson helped Sir Ben Kingsley, HRH the Countess of Wessex, and many others raise cash.</p> <p>Here are a few pics from the event’s Twitter page:</p> <p>Thank you to all who make this such a special day each year! #NeverForget Contribute at<br /> — Cantor Charity Day (@CFCharityDay) September 11, 2015</p> <p>Always a pleasure to have @cturlington at #CFCharityDay! @everymomcounts</p> <p>— Cantor Charity Day (@CFCharityDay) September 11, 2015</p> <p>A huge ? to @cocorocha for joining us at @BGCCharityDay in support of @solvekidscancer! #CantorRelief #NYC</p> <p>— CantorRelief (@CantorRelief) September 11, 2015</p> <p>[email protected] is making a difference on the trading floor for @UNICEF at #BGCCharityDay in #NYC! #CantorRelief</p> <p>— CantorRelief (@CantorRelief) September 11, 2015</p> <p>Number 13 working hard from the #CFCharityDay trading floor to support @MLBPlayersTrust &amp; #HanksYanks! @AROD<br /> — CantorRelief (@CantorRelief) September 11, 2015</p> <p>And here's a video from </p>
Video: Watch Jake Gyllenhaal play a grieving banker in 'Demolition'
Lifestyle, 4:01
<p>While most of them are examples of fantastic story-telling, Wall Street movies have been following pretty much the same formula the past few years. Rich guy does sketchy things financially and gets his comeuppance – “Wall Street” (technically), “Wolf of Wall Street,” the upcoming “Wizard of Lies” – or rich guy does sketchy things to people and somewhat gets away with it – “American Psycho,” “Arbitrage,” “Margin Call.”</p> <p>Well, here’s something a little different.</p> <p>Starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Naomi Watts and directed by Dallas Buyers Club’s Jean-Marc Vallee, “Demolition” follows the life of Davis Mitchell, a successful investment banker who’s handling the sudden loss of his wife in pretty interesting ways. Check it out:</p> <p>Vallee says it’s his most “Rock and Roll” movie to date, and let’s face it; Gyllenhaal’s been on a tear lately.</p> <p>This should be good.<br /> Photo: Wired Photostream</p>
Returns per asset class 2015 YTD [chart]
Capital Markets
<p>A chart by Deutsche Bank AG (NYSE:DB) (ETR:DBK) (FRA:DB) highlighting the returns per asset class 2015 YTD</p> <p>H/T Barry Ritholtz<br /> Returns Per Asset Class 2015 YTD</p> <p>This story originally appeared in ValueWalk.<br /> Photo: Allan Ajifo</p>
S&P cuts Brazil to junk: what it means
Asset Management
<p> S&amp;P cut Brazil's sovereign credit rating to BB+.<br /> The Bovespa index fell about 0.6 percent on Thursday. The real tumbled more than 1.75 percent.<br /> Although a downgrade was expected, the timing of the demotion was unexpected.</p> <p>Standard &amp; Poor's has downgraded Brazil’s sovereign credit rating to BB+. While the move came as no surprise, the timing did catch many analysts and investors off guard, as the demotion was expected for later this year.</p> <p>In addition, the firm maintained the outlook on the rating at negative. This also surprised most analysts.</p> <p>Read more at Benzinga, here.<br /> Photo: Sam valadi</p>
Barron's Weekend Roundup: Alibaba sinks; Apple shows new potential
Capital Markets
<p>A year ago this week, the Chinese Alibaba had the largest-ever IPO. In this week's cover story, Barron's looks at how the powerful company's stock went from peak to a downward slide. Alibaba's stock could continue to fall 50% further, Barron's writes.</p> <p>Alibaba may be falling, but Apple has good growth potential, writes Barron's. Last week Apple revealed new products, including a new iPhone and iPad Pro. As wireless phone companies switch up their plans for customers, Apple is looking to compete with annual upgrades and phone leasing options. Shares for Apple could jump 50%, Barron's writes.</p> <p>This coming week the Federal Reserve will make a decision about whether or not to raise interest rates. Growth stocks have been dominating in recent years, but rising rates could push value stocks up, writes Barron's.<br /> Photo: Világos Gergőhttps<br /> &nbsp;</p>