Nov 30, 2016

FTC Competition Matters - November 30, 2016: FTC @ OECD

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By Krisztian Katona, Office of International Affairs
November 30, 2016

NYT | Energy and Environment on November 30, 2016: OPEC Reaches Deal to Limit Production, Sending Prices Soaring
Stanley Reed and Clifford Krauss
The deal shows that “the weight and resilience of OPEC is still there and will continue to be,” Qatar’s energy minister, Mohammed bin Saleh al-Sada, said at a news conference on Wednesday.

WSJ | Forex Closing on November 30, 2016

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WSJ | Major Indexes Closing on November 30, 2016.

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WSJ | Biggest Decliners Closing on November 30, 2016

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4:46 pm ET 11/30/2016

WSJ | Most Actives Closing on November 30, 2016

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4:32 pm ET 11/30/2016

WSJ | Biggest Gainers Closing on November 30, 2016

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4:32 pm ET 11/30/2016

Wall Street Closing Report on November 30, 2016: Dow, S&P Post Best Month Since March; Energy Stocks Skyrocket 5% Amid OPEC Deal

Fred Imbert
Stocks closed mixed on Wednesday, the last day of the month, as energy stocks surging on an OPEC deal to cut production, while investors digested solid economic data.

FTC Press Release on November 30, 2016: FTC Issues Annual Report On Ethanol Market Concentration

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The Federal Trade Commission has issued its 2016 Report on Ethanol Market Concentration, an annual report required by the Energy Policy Act of 2005 “to determine whether there is sufficient competition among industry participants to avoid price-setting and other anticompetitive behavior.”
As in prior years, the 2016 report concludes that “the low level of concentration and large number of market participants in the U.S. ethanol production industry continue to suggest that the exercise of market power to set prices, or coordination on price and output levels, is unlikely.”

FRB Beige Book - November 30, 2016

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Summary of Commentary on Current Economic Conditions by Federal Reserve District

SEC. Litigation Release - November 30, 2016: Harrison Katzen

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Litigation Release No. 23696 / November 30, 2016

Securities and Exchange Commission v. Harrison Katzen, No. 16-cv-06606 (E.D.N.Y.)

SEC Charges Former Employee of Florida-Based Transfer Agent for Role in Offering Fraud

The Guardian | Opinion | Donald Trump Opinions - November 30, 2016: Frightened by Donald Trump? You Don't Know The Half Of It, by Gerge Monbiot
George Monbiot
Yes, Donald Trump’s politics are incoherent. But those who surround him know just what they want, and his lack of clarity enhances their power. To understand what is coming, we need to understand who they are. I know all too well, because I have spent the past 15 years fighting them.

CMI | Metals Spot Prices Closing on November 30, 2016.

Spot Prices as of traditional New York closing times

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

FRB Speech - November 30, 2016: Speech by Governor Powell on a View From The Fed


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Governor Jerome H. Powell

At the "Understanding Fedspeak" event cosponsored by the Hutchins Center on Fiscal and Monetary Policy at the Brookings Institution and the Center for Financial Economics at Johns Hopkins University, Washington, D.C.

November 30, 2016

FRB Press Release - November 30, 2016: Federal Reserve Board Publishes Report Containing Summary Information on Debit Card Transactions in 2015

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Release Date: November 30, 2016 

The Federal Reserve Board on Wednesday published a report on debit card transactions in 2015, including summary information on the volume and value, interchange fee revenue, certain issuer costs, and fraud losses. The report is the fourth in a series to be published every two years pursuant to section 920 of the Electronic Fund Transfer Act (EFTA).

BEA News Release - November 30, 2016: Personal Income Increase 06% in October...

The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) has issued the following news release today:

European Markets Closing Report on November 30, 2016: Europe Closes Higher as OPEC Agrees Production Cut
Silvia Amaro, Sam Meredith
European markets closed higher on Wednesday afternoon as investors cheered an agreement among OPEC members to cut production and closely followed political developments in Italy.

United States International Trade Commission News Releases - November 30, 2016: USITC Institutes Section 337 Investigation of Certain UV Curable Coatings for Optical Fibers, Coated Optical Fibers, and Products Containing Same

November 30, 2016
News Release 16-149
Inv. No. 337-TA-1031
Contact: Peg O'Laughlin, 202-205-1819
USITC Institutes Section 337 Investigation of Certain UV Curable Coatings for Optical Fibers, Coated Optical Fibers, and Products Containing Same

Bloomberg Markets - November 30, 2016: Five Things You Need to Know to Start Your Day

 Bloomberg Markets

 by Lorcan Roche Kelly
Get caught up on what's moving markets.

It's OPEC day, Trump is said to pick Mnuchin for Treasury Secretary, and Carney fires back at Draghi. Here are some of the things people in markets are talking about today.

Bloomberg View | Economics - November 30, 2016: Give Trump's Infrastructure Plans a Chance
Noah Smith
Donald Trump’s plans for infrastructure spending are finally materializing, and they already have no shortage of critics. But I think the critics should ease up, and give the president-elect a chance.

U.S. Stock Market Future Indications - November 30, 2016: Wall Street Points to Higher Open on Soaring Oil Prices; OPEC Meeting in Focus
Sam Meredith
U.S. stock index futures pointed to a higher open on Wednesday as traders eyed a sharp jump in oil prices ahead of a potential production cut deal from OPEC.

Asian Markets Closing Report on November 30, 2016: Asian Shares Largely Lifted by Positive Day for Wall Street
Ese Erheriene 
Stock markets in Asia were mixed Wednesday, as a positive lead from Wall Street was offset by investor concerns that key oil-producing nations won’t be able to seal a deal to cut global production.
Japan’s Nikkei Stock Average NIK, +0.01%  closed flat, after earlier opening at its highest level in two days, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index HSI, +0.23%  closed up 0.2%, and South Korea’s Kospi SEU, +0.26%  finished up 0.3%. By contrast, the Shanghai Composite Index SHCOMP, -1.00%  was off 1%, and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 XJO, -0.31%  ended 0.3% lower.

Nov 29, 2016

Search Engine Land - November 29, 2016: Google's Machine Learning Now Writes Feature Snippets Descriptions

Image result for search engine land Logo
Barry Schwartz on November 29, 2016 
A Wired article explains how Google is now using machine learning to understand and produce featured snippets in the Google search results.

Google “just went live” on their desktop search results with what they call “sentence-compression algorithms.” This sentence compression is able to learn how “to take a long sentence or paragraph from a relevant page on the web and extract the upshot — the information you’re looking for,” Wired added.

The Guardian | UK | Law | Child Labor - November 30, 2016 (00:01 GMT): Firms Such as Kellogg's, Unilever and Nestlé "Use Child-Labor Palm Oil"
Rob Davies
Global firms behind popular brands such as Kit Kat, Colgate toothpaste and Dove cosmetics use palm oil produced by child workers in dangerous conditions, Amnesty International has claimed.

The Guardian | Opinion | Columnist | The Guardian Education - November 30, 2016: International Maths and Science Rankings: Keep Calm but Change Direction
Peter Goss
The latest international test results for maths and science have been released, and yet again, they paint a picture of stagnating outcomes in Australian schools. Relative to other countries, we are actually slipping backwards – and fast.

NYT | Economy - November 29, 2016: China Tightens Controls on Overseas Use of Its Currency

Keith Bradsher
The headquarters of the People’s Bank of China, the central bank, in Beijing. The decision to restrict overseas use of the renminbi is a setback in China’s long-term drive to turn the currency into a rival to the dollar and the euro for international finance. Jason Lee/Reuters
SHANGHAI — As an exodus of money adds to the pressure on a slowing economy, regulators are trying to put the brakes on overseas use of China’s currency by increasing the scrutiny of certain overseas deals.
The decision to restrict overseas use of the renminbi represents a setback in China’s long-term drive to turn the currency into a rival to the dollar and euro in the global marketplace.
Beijing had pursued a greater role for the renminbi as a way to increase its economic influence. Part of the renminbi’s appeal in international finance was that most Chinese companies could borrow and spend it overseas while seldom seeking approval from financial regulators in Beijing.
But that leniency created a problem for China. The currency flowed out of the country in recent months and then traded heavily overseas, beyond the control of China’s regulators.
The situation has contributed to the currency’s steady weakening against the strong dollar this autumn. That weakness, in turn, has prompted some Chinese businesses and households to move even more money out of the country before its value can erode further.
“The authorities, under the relentless pressures of capital outflows, are poised to impose extensive restrictions on capital movements, marking a reversal of the gradual liberalizations introduced in recent years,” Fred Hu, the chairman of the Primavera Capital Group, an investment firm based in Beijing and Hong Kong, wrote in an email reply to questions.
“While such capital controls may be intended to be temporary,” he wrote, “they will introduce mounting uncertainties for Chinese outbound investments.”
In an effort to slow the exodus, an affiliate of China’s central bank, the State Administration of Foreign Exchange, issued a directive to bankers on Monday that amounted to additional scrutiny.
The directive, which was quickly and broadly circulated within China’s financial community, told banks that their domestic customers must check with the Beijing regulator before transferring $5 million or more — in dollars or renminbi — out of the country. The rules will also cover renminbi that is sitting in overseas accounts, which had previously escaped most regulation.
“The People’s Bank of China in Shanghai is facing great pressure to keep a balance” between inflows to and outflows from China, said the directive, referring to the Shanghai office of the central bank. The directive said that 5.1 trillion renminbi, or $740 billion, sluiced out of China in the first 10 months of this year while only 3.1 trillion came back into the country.
The State Administration of Foreign Exchange declined Tuesday evening to respond to a faxed question regarding offshore renminbi, suggesting that the question should be submitted instead to the People’s Bank of China. The central bank did not respond to questions late Tuesday evening.
Government directives are not supposed to be public in China. In a sign of government irritation at the unauthorized distribution, censors reached into private WeChat social media accounts on Tuesday and deleted copies of the directive.
The rules appear to take aim at a relatively discrete set of overseas deals that largely allow companies to pull money out of the country, rather than more strategic acquisitions.
Many Chinese companies, for example, have used their overseas subsidiaries to buy or borrow renminbi in Hong Kong, London, New York and elsewhere from the international arms of Chinese banks. Some of them then sell the renminbi and buy dollars, in a bet that the dollar will strengthen.
The new rules will apply broadly to Chinese companies. In the past, only companies with headquarters in Beijing typically had to notify the government of big moves in offshore renminbi.
Even so, the new rules amount more to a modest tweak than an outright overhaul.
Capital controls in China already restrict the movement of money. Individuals, for example, are not supposed to move more than $50,000 out of the country annually. Companies, too, have limits and other approval processes. The latest directive basically adds another layer of approval and closes some additional escape valves.
“They are not changing the rules,” said Jeffrey Sun, a partner in the Shanghai office of Orrick, Herrington and Sutcliffe, a global law firm. “It’s that, internally, they need to go through this extensive process.”
While Chinese regulators are increasing their scrutiny, they have been reluctant to ban overseas investment outright. Four different regulators issued a joint public statement on Monday through the official Xinhua news agency to emphasize that it was still acceptable for Chinese companies and households to invest overseas.
China’s overseas investments have “played an important role in deepening China’s mutually beneficial cooperation with other countries and promoting domestic economic restructuring and upgrading,” the statement said.
But even those more strategic deals may soon get a second look. Regulators are also drafting rules that would require prior approval from Beijing for very large overseas corporate acquisitions.
The draft rules on very large acquisitions, first reported by The Wall Street Journal last Friday and subsequently confirmed by bankers and executives who were briefed on the plans, would mandate that prior approval be obtained for deals exceeding $1 billion in real estate or in industries outside the Chinese company’s main area of business. Any acquisition would also require prior approval if it exceeded $10 billion.
But some bankers are skeptical that such rules will make much of a difference. Most large Chinese deals, like the pending acquisition of Switzerland’s Syngenta by the state-owned China National Chemical Corporation, involve well-connected companies that have long received top-level endorsement for their bids in advance anyway.
“The companies behind these large acquisitions are themselves very influential, and many will still find ways to close targeted deals,” said Brock Silvers, the chief executive of Kaiyuan Capital, a Shanghai investment advisory firm.

WSJ | Forex Closing on November 29, 2016

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WSJ | Major Indexes Closing on November 29, 2016

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WSJ | Biggest Gainers Closing on November 29, 2016

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4:31 pm ET 11/29/2016

WSJ | Most Actives Closing on November 29, 2016

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4:31 pm ET 11/29/2016

WSJ Biggest Decliners Closing on November 29, 2016.

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Biggest Decliners Closing
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4:46 pm ET 11/29/2016

Wall Street Closing Report on November 29, 2016: Stocks Close Higher as Health Care, Real Estate Lead; Oil Tumbles 3.9% Amid OPEC Uncertainty
Fred Imbert
U.S. equities closed higher on Tuesday, led by health care and real estate, as investors digested falling oil prices ahead of a key OPEC meeting, as well as economic data.

CM MetalsI Spot Prices Closing on November 29, 2016

Spot Prices as of traditional New York closing times

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

TF Metals Report - November 29, 2016: The USDJPY & the Price of Gold
Well, we've finally reached "contract expiration" day as the Dec16 Comex gold and silver contracts go off the board and into "delivery" at the close today. With total Comex open interest now back to the levels of last December, could price finally be near a bottom? As usual, we must look at the USDJPY for clues.

FDIC Press Release - November 29, 2016: Net Income Rises to $45.6 Billion at FDIC-Insured Institutions In Third Quarter 2016 - Community Bank Net Income Rises to $5.6 Billion

Press Release
November 29, 2016

European Markets Closing Report on November 29, 2016: Europe Close Higher as Oil Prices Dip; OPEC Deal in The Balance

Silvia Amaro, Sam Meredith
European stocks closed higher Tuesday as investors focused on talks between OPEC members and political uncertainty ahead of a key referendum in Italy.

SEC Press Release - November 29, 2016: SEC Votes to Renew Equity Market Structure Advisory Committee

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The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that the Commission voted to renew the Equity Market Structure Advisory Committee’s charter until August 2017 with the current membership.  The committee’s charter was originally scheduled to expire in February 2017.

ESA - Gross Domestic Product - November 29, 2016: RGDP Increased at an Annual Rate of 3.2% in The First Quarter of 2016 According To Today's Second Estimate.

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Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased at an annual rate of 3.2 percent in the third quarter of 2016, according to today’s second estimate.

Profits from current production increased $133.8 billion in the third quarter, after decreasing $12.5 billion in the second quarter.


Bloomberg Markets - November 29, 2016: Five Things You Need to Know to Start Your Day by Lorcan Roche Kelly

 Bloomberg Markets


An OPEC deal remains elusive, U.K.'s Brexit strategy is (possibly) revealed, and UBS says traders have Trump all wrong. Here are some of the things people in markets are talking about today.

Bloomberg View | Culture - November 29, 2016: Donald Trump, First President of Our Post-Literate Age
Joe Weisenthal
In the wake of the 2016 presidential election, the media has worked itself into a panic about the rise of fake news on social media. Reporters have examined the subject from dozens of angles -- profiling misinformation peddlers from California to the Caucasus, analyzing how hoaxes spread, raising red flags about media literacy, and much more.

U.S. Stock Market Market Future Indications - November 29, 2016: U.S. Stocks on Pace for Muted Open as Analysts Argue Traders "Got Carried Away"

Victor Reklaitis
U.S. stock futures on Tuesday pointed to little change at the open, as analysts argued the post-election rally has run its course.

Asian Markets Closing Report on November 29, 2016: South Korean Shares Retrace Losses as Park Looks to Exit
Saheli Roy Choudhury
South Korean shares retraced losses late Tuesday afternoon, as investors reacted to a televised speech by President Park Geun-hye offering to step down through a legal process, according to reports.
Park, who is embroiled in an influence-peddling scandal, apologized and said she would step down from her position in accordance with the law, asking legislators to aid her in handing over power with minimal political unrest, said Reuters.

Nov 28, 2016

U.S. Department of Commerce Communications: Trade and Investment (11/28/16)

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Trade & Investment (11/28/16)
Weekly updates on what we're doing to expand the U.S. economy through increased exports and inward foreign investment.
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U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker and U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman led a U.S. delegation in discussions with Vice Premier Wang Yang and other Chinese government officials as part of the 27th session of the U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT) in Washington. U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and U.S. Ambassador to China Max Baucus also participated in this year’s JCCT, the last of the Obama Administration. At the conclusion of the discussions, the United States announced key outcomes in the areas of intellectual property protection, pharmaceutical and medical devices, and information security policies.
Secretary Pritzker highlighted the two countries’ progress in promoting bilateral trade and commerce through the JCCT, but noted significant challenges remain in the bilateral relationship.
(by Keida Ackerman, Senior Investment Specialist, SelectUSA) I recently had the honor and great pleasure of participating in the Washington, D.C. portion of the Osaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (OCCI) Hydrogen Fuel Cell (HFC) Mission – part of a week-long effort to inspire an HFC conversation around ideas that not only have a positive economic impact, but also hold broader implications for our communities and our planet.
U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker delivered remarks at the opening plenary session of the 27th meeting of the U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT). During her remarks, Secretary Pritzker highlighted the two countries’ progress in promoting bilateral trade and commerce through the JCCT, as well as lingering policy challenges that remain in our bilateral relationship.
U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker delivered remarks at the U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT) Collaborative Program on the Digital Economy. As part of the “Reimagined JCCT,” this event brought the U.S. and Chinese business communities together with government officials from both countries for a discussion on a topic that is ripe for collaboration. 
(by Erwin Parson, International Trade Management Division, U.S. Census Bureau) The season is changing from the blazing hot days of summer to the cool afternoons of fall. The leaves are starting to turn vibrant oranges, reds and yellows and transform our landscape. Harvested in October, pumpkins are traditionally associated with this time of year. Did you buy your pumpkin yet?
(by Jason Lindesmith, Communications Specialist for the U.S. Commercial Service’s Great Lakes Network) Earlier this month, the Acting Director of ITA’s Office of Strategic Partnerships shared how partnerships at ITA ultimately help American businesses while broadening the base of exporters around the country. I would like to offer one example of a budding partnership the U.S. Commercial Service has within in the aerospace industry – our work with the Michigan Aerospace Manufacturing Association (MAMA).
On Sunday, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker delivered remarks at the Warner Theater to celebrate the conclusion of the 2016 U.S.-China Tourism Year. U.S. and Chinese leaders designated 2016 as the U.S.-China Tourism Year in an effort to strengthen tourism and commercial ties between the two countries. In the U.S., government and industry worked together to enhance the tourism experience for Chinese visitors and improve cultural understanding.
U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker participated in an armchair discussion at the World Affairs Council of America annual conference titled “Shaping the American Competitiveness Agenda for the 21st Century.” During the discussion, the Secretary highlighted policies that America must pursue in order to stay competitive, grow the economy, and generate opportunity for working families.
(by Vinay Vijay Singh, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Global Markets and Michael Marangell, International Trade Specialist, U.S. Commercial Service) It took 108 years for the Chicago Cubs to win the World Series. It was a fitting time for nearly 300 U.S. exporters from 27 states, industry experts, and international dignitaries to convene in Chicago (November 1-3) for Discover Global Markets: Building Smart Cities (DGM), the latest in the U.S. Commercial Services’ DGM series. The global urbanization trend will require rapid deployment of smart city solutions in much less time than a century for citizens to integrate into cities with a high quality of living. It is estimated that the world will need to create a few cities the size of Chicago every year for the next 15 years to accommodate citizens seeking their path to prosperity.

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 Dear Friends:  I would like to express hereby my apologies for couldn't fulfill to be with you with my "Daily Financial News Blog&...