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Don't Google "How SEC Detect Unusual Trade" Before Insider Trading

The first rule of insider trading is never to buy calls on the target of an acquisition announcement. The second rule, as Chinese research scientist Fei Yan just found out, is to never google "how sec detect unusual trade" before (while and after) trading on inside information.

Frontrunning: May 31

  • Trump Faces Instability as Russia Probe Expands to Inner Circle (WSJ)
  • Huge bomb in sewage tanker kills at least 80, wounds hundreds in Afghan capital (Reuters)
  • Russia fires cruise missiles at Islamic State targets from Mediterranean (Reuters)
  • Trump blasts Russia probe, urges testimony from former adviser Page (Reuters)
  • Activist probing factories making Ivanka Trump shoes in China arrested (Reuters)

S&P Futures Fade Overnight Gains As Euro Slides; China Stumbles

Asian shares and oil are lower, European shares are little changed, and S&P futures are fractionally in the red after gaining for most of the overnight session, perhaps troubled by warnings by two Fed presidents who warned that markets and valuations appear frothy, and the Federal Reserve may have to raise rates more times than currently forecast.

Johnson & Johnson Acquires European Biotech Giant Actelion For $30 Billion

Concluding weeks of speculation, overnight Johnson & Johnson announced it agreed to acquire Actelion Pharmaceuticals, Europe’s biggest biotech company, for $30 billion, or CHF280 per share, expanding the U.S. pharma giant’s portfolio of rare-disease treatments as its top-selling drug faces new competition.

M&A Rush Continues: Oracle Buys "Very First Cloud Company" NetSuite For $9.3 Billion

Today the debt-funded M&A scramble continued, when moments ago software giant Oracle announced it would acquire the "very first cloud company" NetSuite,  a deal that some analysts thought was inevitable while panned by others. The transaction price of $109 represents a nearly 20% premium to yesterday's closing print, and is expected to be immediately accretive to Oracle.

Global Markets Flat, Coiled Ahead Of Today's Risk Events: OPEC And The ECB

There are just two drivers setting the pace for today's risk mood: the OPEC meeting in Vienna which started a few hours ago, and the ECB's announcement as well as Mario Draghi's press statement due out just one hour from now. Both are expected to not reveal any major surprises, with OPEC almost certainly unable to implement a production freeze while the ECB is expected to remain on hold and provide some more details on its corporate bond buying program, although there is some modest risk of upside surprise in either case.

Stocks Squeeze Higher On "Super Tuesday" As Poor Macro Is Offset By Jack Lew's Soothing Words

With markets happy to put February in the history books because it marked the fourth consecutive monthly decline in global stocks, we move on to March 1st, which doubles down as 'Super Tuesday' in the US when Trump's presidential candidacy will almost certainly be sealed and a day in which stocks decided to join the super fun by super surging overnight on nothing but bad global macro and economic which however was promptly ignored and instead the focus was on ongoing central bank intervention and even more jawboning.

In Duel With Valeant, Ackman; Is Judge David Carter The "New Jed Rakoff?"

In his rejection of an SEC settlement with Citigroup, Judge Jed Rakoff vowed to "see that the truth emerges." After presiding over the most high-profile insider trading cases since the crisis -- including Raj Rajaratnam and Rajit Gupta -- Judge Rakoff has come to symbolize the mantra that "nobody is above the law." In determining that Valeant and hedge fund manager Bill Ackman must face insider trading charges for their failed takeover of Allergan, U.S. District Judge David Carter may be the "new Rakoff."