Euphoria over Apple channel-stuffing and non-GAAP magic for Facebook quickly turned into the HFT-liqudity-providers nightmare as rumors of an emergency Putin press conference sent USDJPY tumbling lower (and therefore US equities). Once the rumor passed - and despite all the facts on the escalation - stocks bounced (especially Nasdaq) to close mixed. S&P and Dow unchish, Nasdaq +0.5%, Russell -0.5%. VIX was in charge in general once the ramp was under-way but even that went into crazy mode as algos lost the plot. Credit markets are "deniers" of the exuberance as are long-end Treasuries which rallied another 2bps and near 10-month lows. Gold was monkey-0hammered early but rallied on Putin's comments and closed unchanged for the week above $1290. Copper rallied notbaly eback above its 50DMA and Oil limped higher as the USD flatlined.
... The HFTs are providing so much liquidity they are literally making it rain.
A day after the acting government in Kiev announced the Geneva agreement is void and that it would once again send special forces to deal with "terrorists" in east Ukraine, it had made good on its promise and over the past few hours, Ukrainian tanks, APCs and other special forces troops took control of a checkpoint north of Slavyansk on Thursday, following what numerous reports confirm was an exchange of gunfire.
So, I'm off to the races to raise money for UltraCoin, my uber-disruptive startup, and I come across the resistance of certain parties to take common stock. Now, the standard in the professional VC community is to take preferred stock with a stack of anti-dilutive measures, control premiums and liquidation preferences.
It would seem a red-line or two have been crossed:
*UKRAINE MILITARY PLANE HIT BY GUNFIRE FROM REBEL TOWN: AFP
This comes on the heels of elevated tensions in the last few days since the "deal" and Biden's arrival in Kiev. Last week saw 'unidentified' fighter jets open fire on the Pro-Russian-held Kramatorsk airfield. The plane, a propellor-driven Antonov An-30, safely made an emergency landing
John Kerry (and more secretly, John Brennan) came, saw, and failed miserably, and repeatedly, to "de-escalate" (or, re-escalate in the case of the CIA visit) the Ukraine situation. So the time has come to bring out the bug gun. Sure enough, heeeeere's Joe, as he arrived in Ukraine. And now sit back and watch as world peace breaks out in 5.... 4.... 3....
And to think it was just two days ago when all the USDJPY momentum ignition algos roared to life on flashing headline news of yet another diplomatic "de-escalation" of tensions in Ukraine. What was clearly ignored is that since John Kerry was involved, it was nothing but the latest sham. And the proof came moments ago when Reuters reported, citing Russian state television on Sunday, that five people were killed when Ukraine gunmen attacked a checkpoint manned by pro-Russian separatists near the eastern Ukrainian city of Slaviansk.
There is now a systemic two-tier justice system operating in these United States, and the result will unquestionably be tyranny if the trend continues unabated. The latest example of a lowly citizen being subject to a disproportionate use of the law, is Jon Daniel of Peoria, Illinois. Jon was behind a parody Twitter account that mocked Peoria mayor Jim Ardis, and his biggest mistake was not making it clear that it was a parody. As a result, Twitter had already suspended the account weeks ago. Problem solved, right? Wrong. The tough guy mayor was so offended that a plebe would dare criticize his royal highness that he ordered a police raid on the home of Jon Daniel and his roommates.
If yesterday we had questions about the half life of the effectiveness of the latest diplomatic de-escalation of Ukraine tensions 'achieved' in Geneva, following news that both Ukraine would continue its anti-terrorist operation and that fighting had broken out in various east Ukraine locations after the agreement, today any questions have been swept aside following news that the Ukraine "separatist" milita, who after all is the primary object of Ukraine "anti-terrorist activities", has announced that they will only leave the occupied east Ukraine buildings if the interim government in Kiev resigns. Denis Pushilin, a spokesman of the self-appointed Donetsk People's Republic, told reporters that the insurgents do not recognize the Ukrainian government as legitimate.
For an administration run by a "straight to TV" teleprompter, it is only fitting that the inspiration for reaching out to the unemployed masses should come straight from the Oscars. No Samsung's media stunt this time, just America's figurehead leaders kindly requesting everyone to please wave to the NSA-controlled webcam: after all they are on the other end, and smiling.
So, It Seems Like That Andreesen Dude Might Actually Know What He's Talking About, But I'll Still Spill His SecretsSubmitted by Reggie Middleton on 04/17/2014 14:00 -0400
I got into a Twitter debate with Marc Andreesen of Netscape (the inventor of the commercial web browser) and Andreesen Horowitz (the VC fund that financed Facebook, Twitter, Skype & Zynga) fame.
He spit out what was mostly common sense, yet still flew in the face of what is taught in school, most text books and by most B school teachers. Here's how it went down...
1/A few common fallacies about valuation of public and private technology companies:
Moments ago Weibo opened at a price that shocked pretty much everyone following the story of China's twitter, which had already cut overnight the number of shares it was taking public:
WEIBO CORP OPENS AT $16.27, IPO AT $17.00
However, within moments of opening the underwriters did everything they can to avoid another Facebook and defended the IPO price, promptly sending the stock above $17.00 where it was trading as of this second. Will they succeed, or will the Chinese social networking invasion also be Candy Crushed? The next few hours will likely give the answer.
Update: UKRAINE DEFENCE MINISTRY CONFIRMS THAT SIX ARMOURED PERSONEL CARRIERS SEIZED BY PRO-RUSSIAN FORCES ON WEDNESDAY... so, defected?
The latest development in the ongoing Ukraine escalation are reports that in the aftermath of yesterday's crackdown by Ukraine special forces against "separatists" in Krematorsk and other occupied eastern cities, in an operation which involved fighter jets and helicopters, that an armored column of military vehicles flying a Russian flag and carrying dozens of heavily armed fighters motored into the city of Slavyansk early Wednesday. The WSJ adds that "it wasn't immediately clear whether the men were Russian soldiers or local militants who had gotten their hands on military vehicles." Curiously a soldier on one said the unit was part of the 25th brigade of Ukraine's airborne forces that had switched sides and was joining the pro-Russian forces, but that couldn't be immediately confirmed."
On the one year anniversary of the Boston Marathon Bombing (which oddly enough the NSA did not prevent, even before its expansive anti-terrorist exploits were revealed by Edward Snowden) it was practically unavoidable that there would be some echos of that tragic day. Sure enough as CBS reports, "the area near the finish line of the Boston Marathon was evacuated Tuesday night after two unattended backpacks were left at the finish line. Police tape has been put up around the photo bridge on Boylston Street. WBZ-TV photographers on scene say they saw a person with the backpack screaming “Boston Strong” before police cleared everyone from the area."
It is oddly ironic to see BATS declare self help against EDGX (since the two are owned by the same company), and yet: here it is.