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Wall Street Journal (April 22)

2024/ 04/ 24 by jd in Global News

Giant investment companies like Blackstone, Franklin Templeton, BlackRock and KKR “are taking over the financial system.” They now “control sums rivaling the economies of many large countries. They are pushing into new businesses, blurring the lines that define who does what on Wall Street and nudging once-dominant banks toward the sidelines.” Their outsize roles are, according to investors, creating “risks markets have never encountered before.”


Wall Street Journal (February 12)

2024/ 02/ 14 by jd in Global News

“Stand in the middle of the business district of any big U.S. city and the nearby buildings are emptier and a lot less valuable than they were four years ago. Listed office real-estate investment trusts have already faced the music: The S&P 500 Office REITs Sub-Industry Index has roughly halved in value since before the pandemic. The reality check for banks is just beginning.”


Financial Times (February 1)

2024/ 02/ 02 by jd in Global News

“Mounting losses from banks in the US, Asia and Europe have rekindled concerns about weakness in the US commercial property market, a sector that has been under pressure from lower occupancy levels and higher interest rates.” This week New York Community Bancorp, Aozora Bank and Deutsche Bank each warned of related risks or recognized losses, which “mark the latest fallout from the… dual problems of fewer people working in offices since the pandemic and more expensive borrowing costs.”


Wall Street Journal (December 28)

2023/ 12/ 29 by jd in Global News

“The failure to anticipate how quickly the Fed would raise interest rates has upended banks big and small this year. Three bigger ones collapsed this spring, but it is community banks… that have been in a full-blown crisis. The losses on long-term bonds have unnerved depositors, investors and regulators who have questioned how bankers failed to properly protect themselves from interest-rate risks.”


Euromoney (November 29)

2023/ 11/ 29 by jd in Global News

“The travails of Zhongzhi, a key player in China’s poorly regulated $3 trillion shadow financing market, underline why a future crisis in the country is more likely, not less.” The government “continues to let problems mount perilously before stepping in… and to kick cans down roads in the hope that unsteady local banks will resolve bad-debt woes or find their own way out of insolvency…. Eventually, one of these financial mini-crises will mutate into a real monster. One that it cannot control.”


Financial Times (November 15)

2023/ 11/ 15 by jd in Global News

“One of Asia’s sleepiest investment sectors has outperformed tech stocks.” Share prices have soared at Japanese banks and their earnings now “confirm the prescience of that rally…. Earnings at Japan’s five biggest banking groups rose 56 per cent to a record of about ¥2tn ($13bn).” Higher spreads and buybacks are part of the equation, “but the biggest driver of the rally has been rising hopes that the central bank may end its ultra-easy monetary policy soon.”


Markets Insider (October 16)

2023/ 10/ 18 by jd in Global News

SEC Chair Gary Gensler “has warned that AI could trigger a financial crisis, as Wall Street rushes to adopt the new technology.” He is calling for “AI regulation that addresses both the underlying AI models built by tech companies and how they are used by Wall Street banks, describing it as a ‘cross-regulatory challenge.’”


American Banker (August 9)

2023/ 08/ 10 by jd in Global News

“Bad actors, unconfined by ethical boundaries, recently released two large language models designed to help fraudsters write phishing prompts and hackers write malware.” In the future, “banks and other companies may need to contend” with novel threats “as fraudsters master the use of large language models.” Companies will also need to consider many risks “when building and deploying their own large language models: theft of models; leaks of information (such as investing advice or personal transaction histories) by model outputs: and manipulation of models by poisoned data (such as open-source data that a malicious actor has intentionally manipulated to be inaccurate).”


American Banker (August 2)

2023/ 08/ 04 by jd in Global News

“Investors were in a sour mood Wednesday after Fitch Ratings downgraded the U.S. government’s credit rating, but analysts expect the firm’s action to have little long-term impact on banks. The markets didn’t exactly shrug off the downgrade…. But the main point made by Fitch’s action — that the U.S. political system is messier than it used to be — is one that analysts say has long been obvious to investors.”


American Banker (June 22)

2023/ 06/ 24 by jd in Global News

“Companies and government agencies have been added in recent days to the list of institutions victimized by a supply chain cyberattack by a ransomware gang that exploited a weakness in file transfer software popular with enterprises.” Cl0p, a ransomware gang, “started exploiting a zero-day vulnerability in Progress Software’s product MoveIt to steal data from at least 91 organizations, including state and federal agencies and at least 10 U.S. banks and credit unions. Data compromised in the leaks included names, addresses, birthdates, Social Security numbers and more.”


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