The Monetary Authority of Singapore issued a lifetime ban on former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. banker Tim Leissner
A Bloomberg News report takes a look at what lies ahead for Goldman as the investment bank
Citigroup Inc. is facing nearly $180 million in losses on loans extended to an Asian hedge fund after the fund's foreign exchange bets went sideways, a source for Bloomberg says. The bank
Two separate proposals from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency will exempt banks with less than $250 billion in assets from company-run stress tests. Under the proposals, companies that would be subject to such stress tests would be required to conduct them every two years instead of annually, and the tests would no longer include an adverse scenario. The regulators have invited public comments on the proposals.
The FDIC is seeking public comments on brokered deposit and interest rate regulations. The regulator said a comprehensive review of the definition and interest rate regulations is needed in light of significant changes in technology, business models, the economic environment and products.
Blythe Masters is stepping down as CEO of blockchain startup Digital Asset Holdings LLC, a role she has held for three years, for personal reasons. Masters will remain a board member, strategic adviser and shareholder of the company. Masters' departure was unexpected since the former JPMorgan Chase & Co. executive has been a prominent figure in the male-dominated blockchain industry, Fortune reports.
The Federal Reserve is expected to announce the fourth and final interest rate hike of 2018 today, which would put the federal funds rate at a target range of 2.25% to 2.5%. In a Dec. 18 tweet, President Donald Trump, who has repeatedly attacked the central bank for the rate hikes in 2018, urged the central bank to not "make yet another mistake."
And Canadian insurer Sun Life Financial Inc. plans to merge Bentall Kennedy, its North American real estate and property management division, with global property investor GreenOak Real Estate LP. Sun Life will contribute its stake in Bentall Kennedy and pay GreenOak shareholders C$195 million in cash in exchange for a 56% stake in the combined Bentall GreenOak entity.
In other parts of the world
Asia-Pacific: IDFC Bank, Capital First close merger; Bank of China names employee supervisors
Europe: Natixis, Sydbank profit warnings; Lloyds CEO faces heat; Italy budget deal
Middle East & Africa: Ecobank says unaware of probe; Fitch downgrades Oman; Morocco holds key rate
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Some US regions get hit harder as community banks pay up for deposits: Community bank customers across the U.S. are pushing for higher rates on their deposits. Mid-Atlantic and Midwest institutions could feel the most pressure as deposit costs rise faster than loan yields.
Stock exchanges hope to lure record-setting unicorn IPOs in '19: The New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq Inc. are stepping up efforts to persuade some of Silicon Valley's biggest unicorns to enter the public markets with their help.
The day ahead
Early morning futures indicators pointed to a higher opening for the U.S. market.
In Asia, the Hang Seng increased 0.20% to 25,865.39, while the Nikkei 225 decreased 0.60% to 20,987.92.
In Europe around midday, the FTSE 100 increased 0.91% to 6,762.45, and the Euronext 100 increased 0.46% to 927.74.
On the macro front
U.S. mortgage activity went down in the week ended Dec. 14, according to the Mortgage Bankers' Association. The composite index slipped 5.8% from the prior week, the purchase index fell 7.0% and the refinance index decreased 2.0%.
The existing home sales report and the Energy Information Administration petroleum status report are due out today.
Click here to read about today's financial markets, setting out the factors driving stocks, bonds and currencies around the world ahead of the New York open.
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