News

12.07.2017

UBS pushes for more robots in the trading floors

Robots are moving on to the trading floors of investment banks. Many of the world’s biggest banks have for years been automating manual, repetitive tasks done by support staff to save money. But now they are putting the latest forms of artificial intelligence to work at the heart of operations among their star traders, allocating funds and analysing data to develop strategies. According to a report by the Financial Times, UBS is about to take robots to trading floors. The company has shown how two AI solutions can assist traders in enhancing their performance.

 
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12.07.2017

Slow progress in Gender diversity on boards

According to a report by Russell Reynolds Associates, Fortune 500 companies  are keen to employ women as general counsel with 35 per cent of open general counsel positions filled by women last year. The increase is attributed to the need for in-house experience which companies now want, having previously hired one in three general counsel from top partner ranks in law firms. Women, who are still struggling to get on the equity partnership ladder, are turning away from law firms to corporate life.  Within the last three years, 91 percent of women hired externally had in-house experience and 61 percent had been a general counsel.

 
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12.07.2017

Book Review: 50 inventions that shaped the modern economy

The world of economy is shaped by many different choices made by human beings. It is also shaped by objects which, sometimes, one would not think of. The book by Tim Harford, Fifty Inventions that Shape the Modern Economy, published by Little, Brown, is entertaining and sometimes surprising.

 
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12.07.2017

European Top Court rules in favour of burqa ban in Belgium

The European Court of Human Rights on Tuesday upheld a Belgian ban on wearing the niqab, a full-face veil, in public spaces. The court dismissed two cases, Belcacemi and Oussar v. Belgium and Dakir v. Belgium, that asserted the ban was in violation of Articles 8, 9, 10 and 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights.  Both cases concerned women who chose to wear the veil of their own volition and felt the ban was discriminatory and without a "legitimate aim." The court rejected the claims that the ban violated a right to private life under the Convention finding that it "could be regarded as proportionate to the aim pursued, namely the preservation of the conditions of 'living together' as an element of the 'protection of the rights and freedoms of others'." 

 
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11.07.2017

How does Renewable Energy Affect Coal Futures Growth? Interview with Dan Gramza

By 2030 Europe is aiming to have 27% of energy market in renewable energy.  On June 26 New York State was the 4th State in USA to commit to 50% use of renewables by 2030.  Not to mention rapid growth of the Australian and Asian markets.  Picking Alpha has asked Dan Gramza to comment on the relationship between Renewable Energy and Coal Markets. Q.: On what parts of Renewable Energy value chain do we have fully developed future markets? D.G.: At the present time, we do not have Renewable Energy futures markets.

 
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11.07.2017

Fancy color diamonds, a new market waiting to be explored

Fancy diamonds are considered to be true works of art, comparable only to priceless paintings and other items that elude conventional valuation standards: their value is the result of a series of factors determining a unique price that cannot be obtained with a sterile calculation.

 
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11.07.2017

Asia’s winning cities

Asia Pacific’s (APAC) population, at almost 3.5 billion, is twice that of Europe and the Americas combined. The tremendous speed of migration from rural to urban locations has led to the creation of many large, densely populated cities, such as Hong Kong and Singapore.

 
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11.07.2017

Nevada declared "state of emergency" for marijuana sales

Legalized recreational marijuana is a hit in Nevada, so much so that the state’s pot stores are almost out of supply after just 10 days. On Friday, Gov. Brian Sandoval endorsed the department's call for a "statement of emergency," which would allow for more licensed distributors, the Reno Gazette-Journal reported. The problem is pretty simple: there’s no supply for a booming demand. Nearly 50 dispensaries in the state have licenses to sell marijuana for recreational use. Those sales got underway on July 1. But those same retailers do not legally have the authority to restock their inventories.

 
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11.07.2017

Yen is safer than Swiss franc, Goldman says

Yen, the japanese currency, is the safe haven, or better, is the safest of them all, according to a correlation analysis by Goldman Sachs Group Inc. economists. Goldman economists, led by Kevin Daly, compared daily and monthly fluctuations for a basket of 28 market currencies across two five-year periods from 2007 to 2011 and 2012 to 2016. “The yen is the most ‘safe-haven’ of ‘safe-haven’ currencies, with the Swiss franc and U.S. dollar vying for second place,” the Goldman analysis found. “At the other end of the spectrum, a number of different emerging-market currencies vie for the title of most ‘risk-on’ currency. These correlations appear relatively stable over time, with the notable exception of some of the U.S. dollar’s relationships.”

 
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11.07.2017

Warren Buffett donates $3.17 bln to charity in one day

Warren Buffett, the Oracle of Omaha, on Monday donated roughly $3.17 billion of Berkshire Hathaway Inc stock to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and four family charities, his largest contribution in a more than decade-long plan to give away his fortune. The billionaire investor's 12th annual donation to the five charities comprised 18.63 million Class "B" shares of Berkshire, valued at $170.25 each as of Monday's market close.

 
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