CFA Society Chicago NewsBrief
May. 13, 2014

Top venture capitalists leave Silicon Valley, bet their careers on Midwest
In San Jose or Mountain View there would be nothing notable about venture capitalists Mark Kvamme and Chris Olsen in a glass-walled room debating whether or not to write a multimillion-dollar check to Aver Informatics, a startup that shows businesses where health care is cheapest. But the trainloads of coal crawling by outside are a stark reminder: This isn’t California.More

Keep it casual — The CFA Chicago approach to networking
CFA Chicago
On Wednesday, May 14 from 11:45 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., CFA Chicago is hosting a progressive networking luncheon at Petterino's on North Dearborn Street. This event provides ample networking opportunities for members and student members — the luncheon features a three-course meal, and attendees will switch tables after each course. Register now, because space is limited. More

The financial crisis through the eyes of a former Treasury secretary
CFA Chicago
Timothy Geithner and Henry Paulson, former secretaries of the United States Department of the Treasury, have more than just a job title in common: Both have served during our country's darker financial times. Join the CFA Chicago Council on Global Affairs and CFA Chicago on Wednesday, May 28 at 5 p.m. for an event you wont want to miss. Henry Paulson will interview Timothy Geithner about his most recent book, and the two will discuss financial crises and the factors shaping our economic future. More

Rob Arnott — thriving theorist and provocative practitioner
CFA Chicago
Besides boasting a successful 30-year career in portfolio management, Rob Arnott has made a name for himself in the financial landscape for reasons other than tenure — Arnott has continued to impress his colleagues as "one of the world's most provocative practitioners." On Thursday, June 19 at 12 p.m., Arnott will share his respected theories and intriguing analysis with those who attend the Distinguished Speaker Series at the Metropolitan Club in Willis Tower. This is a must-attend event, so register now to secure a spot. More

5 TED talks that will change the way you live, love and work
CFA Institute's Enterprising Investor
From time to time, we publish book lists on everything from what to read to become a better finance professional to ways to improve your career prospects. But Lauren Foster figured: Who has time to read a pile of books? Not everyone. An 18-minute TED talk, on the other hand, is something most of us can squeeze into our work days and/or commutes. With that in mind, here are five TED and/or TEDx talks that Lauren found compelling — for the simple reason that they all inspired or challenged her to think about an aspect of my life in a new way.More

Taxable and muni bond funds scored gains in April
Taxable bond funds benefited in April from two types of investors: the fearful and the income hungry. Investors who were jittery over issues ranging from conflict in Ukraine to the slowdown in China's growth retreated into the relative safety of Treasuries. Investors who focused on income sought it in spread-oriented categories. "The need for yield and lack of attractive supply pressed investors to put money to work across spread sectors and in Treasuries," said Rick Rieder, BlackRock's chief investment officer of fundamental fixed income. More

CBOE chief says fewer 'dark' trades would benefit markets
Chicago Tribune
The quality of U.S. stock markets will improve if regulators limit trading that happens outside of exchanges, the head of CBOE Holdings Inc. said after the company reported higher-than-expected quarterly earnings. The comments from CEO Ed Tilly, who runs the largest U.S. stock-options market, put more attention on the role of so-called dark pools after Terrence Duffy, executive chairman of futures exchange-operator CME Group Inc, said that regulators should look into dark markets.More

Emanuel skeptical of teachers' union pension plan
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s administration is swatting down key aspects of the Chicago Teachers Union’s proposal to shore up the ailing pension fund for city teachers. Emanuel suggested a proposed tax on financial transactions would hurt the big Chicago-based financial exchanges like the Chicago Board Options exchange and CME Group, which owns the Chicago Board of Trade and other exchanges. The Chicago Teachers union is pushing what it calls a “LaSalle Street tax” on futures and derivatives trades. CTU estimates it could reap $10 billion to $12 billion a year.More

US financial risk council adopts new transparency measures
The U.S. financial risk council recently adopted new transparency measures, after critics raised concerns the group was too secretive about its decision-making process. In a unanimous vote, the Financial Stability Oversight Council agreed to give the public seven days' notice about upcoming meetings and agenda items. It also said it would start publishing "read-outs" from closed-door sessions.More

States pushing to offer retirement accounts to private sector
Pensions & Investments
Expanding the public retirement system to the private sector moved to political reality from abstract concept this year, as 16 states either are considering legislation or taking the first steps toward implementing new approaches. “With 75 million Americans without a retirement plan, there is no question that our country has a retirement security crisis,” said Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, in an e-mail. “I am encouraged to see states taking steps to improve retirement outcomes for Americans.” More

US financial regulation must extend beyond banks, Tarullo says
The Wall Street Journal
In the aftermath of the financial crisis, U.S. regulators have attempted to tighten bank rules by forcing them to raise additional capital and by adopting a raft of other rules contained in the Dodd-Frank financial reform law. However, there is growing concern that such rules are forcing financial activity into the "shadow banking" sector, outside the purview of regulators — which is partly what led to the crisis in the first place.More

UBS overhauls structure, offers investors extra cash
Fox Business
UBS is making changes to its structure so that it can reduce risks in a crisis, creating a group holding company that will allow it meet different international regulatory demands and reduce capital requirements. Since the reorganization will reduce the amount of money UBS sets aside for losses, the company will be paying a special dividend. UBS will also become eligible for a capital rebate from Swiss “too-big-to-fail” requirements. “We are substantially enhancing the resolvability of UBS in response to evolving global regulatory requirements,” says Axel Weber, Chairman of the Board, in a statement.More

Fannie and Freddie: A tale of 2 'siffies'
It was the worst of times, back in 2008 and 2009, when frightened federal officials thought the whole financial system might collapse and they might be blamed if it did. It was the best of times, last year and this year, when regulators regained courage and believed they had learned the lessons of the financial crisis. Imagining that nothing they did could harm the system, they aspired to secure it for the future by assuming immense power over it.More

Top venture capitalists leave Silicon Valley, bet their careers on Midwest
In San Jose or Mountain View there would be nothing notable about venture capitalists Mark Kvamme and Chris Olsen in a glass-walled room debating whether or not to write a multimillion-dollar check to Aver Informatics, a startup that shows businesses where health care is cheapest. More

Silicon Valley accelerator looks to Chicago for tech startups
Crain's Chicago Business
Silicon Valley accelerator Plug and Play is recruiting Chicago startups for its next class. Like Boulder, Colorado-based TechStars, which last year joined forces with Chicago's Excelerate Labs, Plug and Play has been eyeing Chicago for a while. More

Rob Arnott reveals: What's really smart about smart beta
A lot of ink has been spilled on smart beta, the purportedly improved version of the beta an investor gets from investing in passive index funds, which are typically weighted by market capitalization.More