CBOE has new indices
Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) announced it has created a series of 13 “Enhanced Growth Indexes,” the second in a family of options-based strategy performance benchmarks designed to target the outcomes of specific investment strategies. The indices measure the performance of a hypothetical portfolio of S&P 500 Index FLexible EXchange (FLEX) options designed to provide targeted annual returns. CBOE began disseminating daily values for the new benchmarks on June 24.
The Vest Financial Group Inc., an asset management firm that provides options-based investments through structured protective strategies, will be the first to offer products on the Enhanced Growth Indices.
The Universal Compute Xchange (UCX), an on-demand spot exchange to trade access to cloud capacity, has created 500 seats that have full privileges in UCX LLC. On July 1, UCX LLC released 100 of the 500 SEATs to be sold for $25,000 each. Seats include units of the LLC along with trading privileges. Trading rights include reduced transaction fees and a waiver of both membership fees and annual fees from the date of activation.
In July, Michael Coscia was sentenced to a three-year prison term in the U.S. District Court in Chicago after being convicted of criminal spoofing. Coscia, owner of New Jersey-based Panther Energy Trading, is the first person
convicted under the spoofing stature, which was part of Dodd-Frank.
Citadel LLC hired Kevin Turner, the chief operating officer at Microsoft Corp., to become chief executive officer of its securities unit as financial-services firms seek talent to help build their technology expertise. Turner will start his new role at the Chicago-based firm in September where he will be in charge of the oversight of quantitative trading and analytical development.
Bats Global Markets Inc. announced the creation of the Bats Community Policing Program for its U.S. equities and options exchanges, an initiative designed to further enhance the company’s capabilities in monitoring markets. The program establishes a process to gather information and intelligence about unwanted trading and quoting behaviors in the U.S. equities and options markets. The program is scheduled to take effect in August 2016.
BM&F Bovespa has bought a 10% stake in Bolsa de Valores de Colombia, becoming the top shareholder for the Columbian exchange. The Sao Paulo-based company, which has also bought stakes in Chile and Mexico’s exchanges, plans on additional investments in the Columbian exchange as a way to bolster “financial integration in Latin America.”
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has approved plans by the NYSE to speed up and smooth early morning trading in times of market stress. Under the SEC’s ruling, the NYSE would be allowed to open stocks for trading during turbulent time periods and would not have to disclose stock prices, which are usually required before trading. The exchange is in the process of making technological changes before the ruling can be finalized.
Personal investing service Macroaxis released a new version of its Portfolio Optimization engine in July to help investors generate efficient portfolios faster and more accurately. The new features allow self-guided investors to receive asset allocation suggestions in an agile environment regardless of the size, composition and volatility of their existing portfolios while providing investors with a position diagnostics module. The release caters to younger demographics of investors relying more on digital advising services that leverage code automation and exotic algorithms to build portfolios without human intervention.
In July, the Climate Bonds Initiative convened a Hydropower Technical Working Group to assess and develop criteria for climate friendly investments in hydro power. The investments that meet the criteria will deliver climate mitigation benefits and/or incorporate adaptation and resilience effects and screen out those that don’t meet these objectives. The criteria will also provide a path for certifying green bonds in the sector under the Climate Bonds Standard and Certification Scheme.
New York AG
In July, Attorneys General from New York, Massachusetts and Maryland announced lawsuits against Volkswagen AG and its affiliates, as well as their American subsidiaries, for the automakers’ sale of diesel automobiles that were allegedly fitted with illegal “defeat devices” that concealed illegal amounts of harmful emissions thag these cars spewed — and then allegedly attempting to cover-up their behavior.
EMTA & CME Group
Emerging Markets Traders Association and CME Group announced in June that they will both be adopting the
U.S. dollar/Russian ruble (USD/RUB) currency pair benchmark. EMTA has recommended its members use Moscow Exchange’s (MOEX) USD/RUB benchmark (MOEX 12:30 rate) for non-deliverable forwards and non-deliverable options as their primary settlement rate option, effective July 18. CME also plans to switch to the MOEX 12:30 rate.
Chicago-based independent futures brokerage and clearing firm R.J. O’Brien & Associates announced that Jordan Stern has joined the firm as senior vice president of ethanol, operating out of Chicago. Stern will be focused on building out the firm’s futures, swaps and physical brokerage capabilities in ethanol and other biofuels beginning Aug.1.
STOXX Ltd., the operator of Deutsche Börse Group’s index business, and a global provider of index concepts, announced that the EURO STOXX 50 Index has been licensed to ANZ ETFS Management to serve as the underlying for an ETF in Australia. ANZ ETFS is a partnership between Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ) and ETF Securities.
The German Börse AG and Hale Global have signed an agreement for the sale of Market News International Inc. (MNI), a provider of macroeconomic background information and market news for the global foreign exchange and bond markets. By divesting its news business, Deutsche Börse will focus more on growth areas defined in the group-wide “Accelerate” growth strategy.
The Chamber of Digital Commerce announced that Mark Wetjen of The Depository Trust & Clearing Corp. (DTCC) will be added to its Board of Advisors. Wetjen, 42, currently serves as the head of global public policy at the DTCC and served as Commissioner and acting chairman of the CFTC.
Aperture Group LLC, the owner of OptionsHouse, announced that Sarah Butterfass has been named chief marketing officer. Butterfass joins Aperture Group from Orbitz Worldwide Inc., where she most recently served as vice president, customer loyalty. As CMO, Butterfass is responsible for expanding and leading marketing efforts at Aperture Group, and its subsidiaries, OptionsHouse and optionMONSTER Media.