The EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement says almost nothing about financial services, leaving the industry with essentially a no-deal Brexit, UK market participants say. "To an extent, Brexit is kind of done for us: Since the referendum was voted, we have prepared for what we suspected would be coming down the line," says Jason Waight, head of European regulatory affairs and business management at MarketAxess.
Long-dated sovereign debt is returning to favour, offering investors an opportunity to trade duration for marginally superior yield. Germany has raised €2 billion from a 100-year issuance, and France plans to offer a 50-year bond.
Pandemic-hit European companies should issue a new class of hybrid shares to shore up balance sheets, according to a report from AFME and PwC. The securities would share features common to equities and bonds and would offer dividends but no voting rights. AFME CEO Adam Farkas says hybrid shares could "play a key role in supporting Europe's recovery".
Job openings in the City of London decreased 49% last year compared with 2019 as employers reduced hiring amid the coronavirus pandemic and the Brexit transition period, data from Morgan McKinley shows.
Assets in sustainable exchange-traded funds increased to $174 billion in 2020 from $59 billion in 2019. However, many of the ETFs fell short of UN environmental, social and governance criteria.
US Treasury Department secretary nominee Janet Yellen is expected to tell lawmakers today the government will not pursue a weaker dollar to secure a competitive advantage, a stance opposite that of the Trump administration. In her confirmation hearing with the Senate Finance Committee, Yellen is also expected to offer details on a $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief proposal.
A difficult eurozone outlook leaves the European Central Bank facing questions about the next stage of its response to the coronavirus pandemic. Among issues for policymakers to address are a slow vaccine rollout, yield-curve control and limits on asset purchases under the Pandemic Emergency Purchase Programme.
Banks' failure to tighten risk controls for leveraged loans is drawing a threat of more capital requirements from the European Central Bank. The ECB promises more scrutiny via site visits.
London Stock Exchange Group wants the UK government to speed up the process for taking a company public, a source says. A five-week delay between publishing registration documents and starting trading makes pricing an offering accurately difficult, market participants say.
The Chinese economy picked up in the fourth quarter, with GDP growth reaching 6.5%, bringing 2020 growth to 2.3%, government statistics show. A resurgence in industrial output drove the increase, leaving China one of few economies to report growth for 2020.
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