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Private Equity : the tricks of the trade

Private equity has a serious image problem – an overhaul of its practices is overdue. The industry has always been seen as hardheaded, but now there is a growing perception of a callous attitude to other stakeholders. Private equity now faces attacks from regulators, investors and politicians. Against a weaker economic background, a re-run of […]

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Crowdfunding : a real threat to banks – with a little help

With small business lending by banks still weak, crowdfunding could assist broader based economic recovery. But the slow pace of regulatory reform is limiting its potential. Banks still fail to view the sector as a strategic threat and regulation is painfully slow. With just a little more encouragement from politicians and regulators, crowdfunding could represent […]

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Is the Forex market beyond control?

How big is too big to rig? Can the scale of a market put it beyond anyone’s ability to manipulate? Forex trading may soon answer these questions, as investigations into possible breaches begin on both sides of the Atlantic. Even a market that trades $5.3 trillion per day may not be beyond the ability of […]

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Splitting major universal banks makes sense; safer & more valuable

Banks are proving a tough match for regulators, pushing back strongly against more controls and higher capital ratios. They have argued that imposing rules which increase capital could hit recovery, and politicians are particularly sensitive to this.But banks’ very success in fighting against strong capital ratios – suggesting that restoring capital should take years – […]

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Bank downgrades are a challenge for Trustees & Treasurers

The UK’s Co-operative Bank has moved quickly to repair its management and governance after ratings agency, Fitch, downgraded the Banks’s debt last month. Its bonds, PIBS and preference shares have fallen, with expectation of a write down or bail-in involving those lenders, but not depositors. The Bank has reassured investors that capital currently exceeds regulatory […]

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Risks to investors in a high frequency world ; why controls are needed to address High Frequency Trading’s potential for systemic risk.

Financial News Op-Ed 2 April 2013 High Frequency Trading is now in the sights of regulators around the world. HFT involves automatic trading strategies with high volume and extremely short holding periods. Dramatic growth over the last five years means new potential for systemic risk. Last year, HFT strategies represented 36% of EU trading volumes, […]

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CFA UK’s Professionalism Conference on Friday April 19th : free event

I am participating in a panel discussion on stewardship at CFA UK’s Professionalism Conference on Friday April 19th. The conference is designed to provide practical guidance on building and maintaining an ethical and professional culture in investment management firms. The conference starts at 1pm and is being held at the Americas Square Conference Centre, London […]

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Conflicts of Interest: What You Need to Know

New article by Colin McLean in CFA Institute’s Inside Investing. Conflicts of interest are now getting more attention from clients and regulators. It is not enough just to “do the right thing” for clients. Instead, a rigorous framework for managing and reporting conflicts is needed.http://cfa.is/15KuJmz Clients need to know which questions to ask and what […]

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Systemic Risk in ETFs

The explosion in Exchange Traded Funds threatens to make the industry a systemic risk. Regulation has focused too narrowly on the problems of 2008, overlooking the huge growth in new products since then. ETFs were a relatively small part of capital markets during the last crisis, but since then have taken off in complexity and […]

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Systemic Risks in Money Market Funds

Despite new support from Europe for the financial sector, markets are still exposed to one big hidden risk. Potential problems in almost every type of financial institution and security have been tackled, yet a key danger remains. Money market funds seem to have escaped the big financial sector reforms of the past two years. The […]

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