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jerryking : hedging   14

The Francis Bacon indicator? Art world soaks up excess cash
Nov. 19 2013 | The Globe and Mail The Globe and Mail | BRIAN MILNER.

Investors, collectors and dealers forked out nearly $1.2-billion (U.S.) last week – far above industry expectations – for a handful of illustrious names at the fall contemporary art auctions in New York. ...Art market experts, just like their counterparts in commodities, real estate, stocks and bonds, insist this is no bubble: The market is healthy, demand is growing and supply is limited....But the rich are eagerly parting with their money for art for a variety of personal and financial reasons. As a rising asset in a low-interest rate world, it’s viewed as a potential hedge against future financial storms. After all, demand remained relatively stable in the aftermath of the Great Meltdown. Also, owning a famous piece of art offers a heck of a lot more prestige than buying another commercial property. And it’s a lot cheaper than trying to compete with the Russian oligarchs (who are also big art buyers) for sports franchises.
art  bubbles  collectors  auctions  high_net_worth  contemporary_art  Francis_Bacon  prestige  hedging  low-interest  art_finance  alternative_investments  art_market 
november 2013 by jerryking
Cargill Beats Back Co-Op on Hedges - WSJ.com
February 5, 2013 | WSJ | By CAROLYN CUI.

Cargill was hired as Autauga's marketing agent, which included helping the cooperative place hedges. Waudware??
hedging  commodities  Cargill 
february 2013 by jerryking
Exchange Sale Reflects New Realities of Trading - NYTimes.com
December 20, 2012 | NYT | By BEN PROTESS and NATHANIEL POPPER.

(Idea for the Ontario Food Terminal and the OPMA??) the firm, IntercontinentalExchange, or ICE, an electronic operator of markets for derivatives and commodities, is buying the symbolic cradle of American capitalism, the New York Stock Exchange,for $8.2 billion....ICE was founded in 2000 by Mr. Sprecher, who began his career developing power plants. In the 1990s, he saw that many power companies and financial firms wanted to hedge their investments in energy with financial contracts, but the market for these contracts was disorganized and opaque.

Mr. Sprecher bought an obscure exchange for buying and selling electricity in Atlanta and turned it into ICE with financing from BP and Wall Street firms, including Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley.

Banks were drawn to the idea of a standardized place to buy and sell derivatives tied to the value of oil and other commodities. But they also hoped to create a competitor to the virtual monopoly position being built up by the Chicago Mercantile Exchange in futures trading....ICE also decided to fashion its own clearinghouse, rather than tap an outsize firm. It expanded through acquisitions, planting the seeds for growth in 2008, when it took over the Clearing Corporation, home to a popular derivative known as a credit-default swap.

The Dodd-Frank overhaul may provide additional benefits for ICE. Under the law, exchanges must turn over public and private information to outside data warehouses, which will, in turn, share the information with regulators. Sensing an opportunity, ICE created its own warehouse, named ICE Trade Vault.

ICE and its Chicago rival, CME Group, have also moved in recent months to convert swaps trades, which are facing more scrutiny under Dodd-Frank, into old-fashioned futures contracts. Futures trading is lucrative territory for the exchanges in part because they can shut out competitors.

“The reality is that there are incentives to convert swaps into futures, where there’s less competition,” said Richard M. McVey, chief executive of MarketAxess, an independent trading platform that is expanding into the swaps business. “There’s no requirement for CME and ICE to open their futures clearinghouses to other exchanges.”
contracts  stockmarkets  mergers_&_acquisitions  M&A  derivatives  Dodd-Frank  trading_platforms  bourses  OFT  hedging  opacity  public_information  private_information  disorganization  clearinghouses 
december 2012 by jerryking
Managing Risk In the 21st Century
February 7, 2000 | Fortune | By Thomas A. Stewart.

Take risk management, a responsibility of the treasury function. Most risk managers haven't begun to cope with the real threats 21st-century companies face. Like the drunk in the old joke who looks for his lost keys under the streetlamp because the light is better there, risk management is dealing with visible classes of risk while greater, unmanaged dangers accumulate in the dark.

Risk--let's get this straight upfront--is good. The point of risk management isn't to eliminate it; that would eliminate reward. The point is to manage it--that is, to choose where to place bets, where to hedge bets, and where to avoid betting altogether. Though most risk-management tools--insurance, hedging, diversification, etc.--have to do with reducing loss, the goal is to maximize the gains from the risks you take (alpha? McDerment?)

So where should we look for these new risks?

--Your reputation or brand. When a bad batch of carbon dioxide in Coca-Cola sickened some Belgian children last summer, Coke's European operating income fell about $205 million, and Coca-Cola Enterprises, the bottler, incurred $103 million in costs. What about the cost to brand equity? One highly imperfect proxy: Coke's market capitalization fell $34 billion between June 30 and Sept. 30, 1999.

--Your business model. Asset-free, knowledge-intensive competition is to entrenched business models what the Panzer was to the Maginot Line. MP3s changed the music business more fundamentally than anything since radio. E*Trade, 18 years old, forced Merrill Lynch, 180, to change its way of doing business. Yet the new guys' very nimbleness creates its own risks, which traditional risk management can't help. You can protect the hard assets of a brick-and-mortar mall. Click-and-order stores are much more exposed: Cash flow is just about all they've got.

--Your human capital. The obvious human-capital risk is flight--especially in a tight labor market--but it's only part of a larger, subtler problem. When the CEO intones, "People are our most important asset," he's wrong, even if he's sincere. People are your most important investors. Your stock of human capital matters less than your flow of it. Any turbulence--and is there anything but turbulence these days?--can disrupt the flow, damaging your ability to attract human capital or people's desire to collaborate. Says Thomas Davenport, a partner at Towers Perrin: "Uncertainty is a real enemy of human capital. People rebalance their ROI by cutting back the investment."

--Your intellectual property. Many risks to intellectual property--theft, for example--can be dealt with in obvious, if sometimes onerous, ways. Here's the cutting-edge question: How do you manage risk in the process by which new intellectual property is created? How do you cope with the fact that the safer a given R&D project is, the less likely it is to be a big-money breakthrough? How do you balance the virtues of specialization against those of diversification?

--Your network. No company is an island, entire of itself; odds are your business is embedded in a network you do not control. It's not just that AOL might crash and cost you a few days' sales; your whole business may depend on tangible and intangible assets that belong to outsourcing partners, franchisees, sugar daddies, or standard-setters.
There are a couple of patterns here. First, an ever-greater part of business risk comes from sources your company can't own--people, partners, environments. Second, volatility isn't just a currency or stock market risk anymore. Labor markets, technologies, even business models oscillate at higher frequencies--their behavior more and more resembling that of financial markets.

In those patterns are hints of how to manage intellectual risks--which we'll examine next time.
risk-management  21st._century  risks  Thomas_Stewart  reputation  branding  business_models  financial_markets  talent_management  intellectual_property  networks  human_capital  turbulence  uncertainty  volatility  instability  nimbleness  labour_markets  accelerated_lifecycles  intellectual_assets  e-commerce  external_interaction  talent_flows  cash_flows  network_risk  proxies  specialization  diversification  unknowns  brand_equity  asset-light  insurance  hedging  alpha  Michael_McDerment 
june 2012 by jerryking
Go Ahead, Take a Risk
June 22, 2004 | WSJ | By ADRIAN SLYWOTSKY

What are the risks you should be taking but aren't? Most managers treat risk as an unwanted byproduct of the business. They think narrowly of financial, operating, and hazard risks, such as currency fluctuations, employee fraud, and earthquakes. And they defend themselves through practices like hedging, internal controls, and insurance.

But disruptive strategic risks can be a much larger source of value destruction for a firm. I looked back to the bull market of the 1990s to analyze movements of the Fortune 1000 stocks; even then, before the market collapsed, 10% of stocks lost over one-quarter of their value in a single month, primarily because of strategic-risk events.

The most successful companies do not try to simply minimize strategic risk; they embrace such risk by making prudent bets in their growth-oriented strategies. Strategic risks include not just the obvious, high-probability events that a new ad campaign or new product launch will fail, but other less-obvious risks as well: Customers' priorities will change quickly -- as when baby-boomer parents quickly migrated from station wagons to minivans, catching most automakers off guard. New technology will overtake your product -- as mobile telephony has stolen market share from fixed-line voice. A one-of-a-kind competitor will render your business model obsolete -- as the Wal-Mart tidal wave has washed over mid-range department stores.

Although insurance and hedging can't address strategic risks, there are an array of countermeasures that can, including these three:
1) Smart sequencing for new growth initiatives. Look for incumbents that are moving deliberately, leveraging existing assets and customer relationships to gain the experience, knowledge, and reputation necessary to take the next step with confidence.
2) Proprietary information to reduce the risk of each new initiative. Gather and generate proprietary information that produces a depth of insight into the customer's needs and activities that traditional suppliers cannot match. This will make you a supplier of choice, reducing bidding volatility and allow you to plan with greater certainty.
3) Double betting to minimize the risk of obsolescence. When several versions of a new technology are competing to become the standard, it's impossible to predict which will prevail. So smart managers make double bets. Betting on both Windows and OS/2 positioned Microsoft to be the winner, regardless of which operating system prevailed.

Traditional risk management seeks to contain losses. But that's just one-half of the growth equation. By embracing strategic risk, Cardinal, JCI, and other risk-savvy companies have raised their growth potential in addition to reducing their economic volatility. That's important at a time when aggregate market growth is sluggish: The biggest risk of all is not to take the right growth risks for the business.
leaps_of_faith  Adrian_J._Slywotzky  risk-taking  proprietary  sequencing  scuttlebutt  information  growth  strategic_thinking  Mercer  Oliver_Wyman  product_launches  nonpublic  low_growth  slow_growth  insights  customer_insights  value_destruction  disruption  insurance  new_products  obsolescence  countermeasures  volatility  customer_risk  one-of-a-kind  hedging  overly_cautious  risk-aversion  de-risking  double_betting  risk-management  bull_markets  customer_relationships  dark_data  risk-savvy  internal_controls  financial_risk  risks 
june 2012 by jerryking
UNPRECEDENTED VOLATILITY A HALLMARK OF AGRICULTURE’S NEW AGE
* Have a plan for the future – perhaps a surprise to some, but many farmers don’t have a plan in place that paints a vision for where they want to take their operation over the next 2, 5 and 10 years.
• Have credit in place before it is actually required – it is human nature to leave things to the last minute.
• Implement a sound hedging strategy – in addition to the system of crop insurance in place in this country, there are many ways that Canadian farmers can take actions to manage their risk. Diversifying into new businesses is one example.
• Well-managed risk can pay off – at the same time, taking on some risk that is prudent and ts the risk pro le of the farming operation can pay off handsomely for farmers. In such a volatile and fast paced environment, there are bound to be some buying and selling opportunities that open up. Knowing when to take advantage of them can separate successful farms with those that muddle along.
• Know your costs – many producers have a good sense of how their top line is performing. But it is just as impor-tant to have a good understanding of the cost side of the equation.
• Maintain adequate liquidity and reasonable leverage – in order to mitigate the risks associated with increasing asset prices, it would be prudent for farmers to ensure that they have sufficient liquidity and manageable leverage if they are expanding.
• Use reasonable interest rate assumptions in assessing investment opportunities – even though borrowing costs are unusually low, farmers must be mindful of the fact that this low-rate environment won’t last forever.
agriculture  uncertainty  volatility  farming  liquidity  leverage  hedging  futures_contracts  diversification  new_businesses  risks  risk-management  risk-taking  OPMA  WaudWare  interest_rates  vision  long-term  never_forever  business_planning  credit  costs  anticipating  risk-mitigation  low-interest  cost-consciousness 
may 2012 by jerryking
Goldman Builds Ambitious Role In Buyout Realm - WSJ.com
October 31, 2006 | WSJ | By HENNY SENDER

Goldman Builds Ambitious Role In Buyout Realm
Loans to Private-Equity Firms Edge Out Commercial Bankers; Wearing Hat as Investors, Too

Investment banks are building their financing capabilities as they build their own buyout, or private-equity, businesses....Goldman's footprint has been especially deep on complicated deals like Texas Genco. The power company was bought by the four buyout firms -- Blackstone Group, Hellman & Friedman LLC, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. and Texas Pacific Group. When those private-equity firms won Texas Genco in a hotly contested auction, they counted on Goldman for several aspects of their offer.

In addition to arranging the loans, Goldman arranged derivatives transactions that protected the new owners against the possibility of a plunge in energy prices. This hedge gave comfort to other lenders, making the financing less costly than it would otherwise have been.

Similarly, in 2005, when Cerberus Capital Management LP bought paper and timber operations from MeadWestvaco for $2.3 billion, Goldman led the financing and arranged hedges for the new owners against fluctuations in the prices of pulp, natural gas and currencies.

"If a deal requires creativity, Goldman will figure out how to make it work," says Scott Sperling of private-equity firm Thomas H. Lee Partners LP in Boston.
buyouts  private_equity  Goldman_Sachs  funding  LBOs  Cerberus  investment_banking  creativity  derivatives  hedging  owners 
april 2012 by jerryking
Even Dairy Farming Has a 1 Percent - NYTimes.com
By ADAM DAVIDSON
March 6, 2012
to accommodate global trade rules and diminishing political support for agricultural subsidies, the government allowed milk prices to follow market demand. People in other parts of the world — notably China and India — also became richer and began demanding more meat and dairy products. Animal feed, especially corn and soybeans, became globally traded commodities with all the impossible-to-predict price swings of oil or copper. Today Robert can predict his profit or loss next month with all the certainty that you or I can predict the stock market or gas prices. During my visit, Robert said that his success this year will be determined by, among other things, China’s unpredictable economic growth, the price of gas (influenced, of course, by events in Iran and Syria) and the weather in New Zealand (a major milk exporter), where a drought can send prices skyrocketing.

There are ways to manage, and even profit from, these new risks. The markets offer a stunning range of complex agricultural financial products. Dairy farmers (or, for that matter, anybody) can buy and sell milk and animal-feed futures, which allow them to lock in favorable prices, hedge against bad news in the future and so forth. There’s also a new product that combines feed and milk futures into one financial package, allowing farmers to guarantee a minimum margin no matter what happens to commodity markets down the road.
farming  risk-management  agriculture  dairy  hedging  risks  soybeans  commodities  futures_markets  bad_news 
march 2012 by jerryking
One Way of Insuring The Risky Business of Life - WSJ.com
APRIL 24, 2003 | WSJ | By DAVID R. HENDERSON. Financial derivatives have, in essence, allowed companies to buy insurance against swings in prices.

Wouldn't it be nice if individuals could join this game, hedging against, say, losses in income or in the equity value of houses? We will probably soon be able to, according to Robert J. Shiller in "The New Financial Order" (Princeton, 366 pages, $29.95).

Mr. Shiller, a finance economist at Yale University, writes that the information-technology revolution is making it easier to get good data on the home prices in various markets and on incomes in various occupations -- and to subject such data to reliable analysis. Once we know the numbers, he argues, we can hedge the risks.
hedging  derivatives  risks  book_reviews  personal_finance  Robert_Shiller  Yale  home_ownership  personal_beta  human_capital  quantified_self 
november 2011 by jerryking
Think Smarter About Risk - WSJ.com
JUNE 14, 2010 | Wall Street Journal | By MOSHE A. MILEVSKY.
Too many investors may be taking big chances with their money because
they aren't considering the most important asset of all: themselves.
"Eventually some clever teenager will develop an iPod app in which users
specify background demographic information about themselves, where they
live, educational achievements, job history, etc. They will then
receive daily updates on the value of their entire personal balance
sheet, including their human-capital value and personal beta. At first
this mark-to-market value of You Inc. will be crude, blunt and
controversial. But over time—and by tapping into the vast array of data
from the clouds—this valuation will be refined to the same level of
accuracy as any closing price on a mutual fund....One thing, though, is
certain: Knowing your personal beta will help you manage your total risk
more effectively. And that is always a safe strategy."
howto  risk-assessment  insurance  massive_data_sets  cloud_computing  personal_finance  derivatives  human_capital  hedging  risk-management  VaR  personal_data  personal_beta  quantified_self  risks  demographic_information 
june 2010 by jerryking
Wealth Matters - Learning How to Hedge Yourself, Not Just Your Portfolio - NYTimes.com
March 5, 2010 | New York Times | By PAUL SULLIVAN. “People
have learned in the last few years that their human capital is much more
sensitive to the financial markets than they thought,” said Moshe
Milevsky, a professor of business at York University in Toronto and the
author of the book, “Are You a Stock or a Bond?” (FT Press, 2008).
hedging  human_capital  financial_capital  books  wealth_management  personal_finance  personal_beta  quantified_self  self-worth 
april 2010 by jerryking
Small Firms Look to Derivatives Trading - WSJ.com
MAY 29, 2007 | Wall Street Journal | by DAVID ENRICH

Investments Mute Risk of Price Swings For Raw Materials
hedging  raw_materials  commodities  derivatives  David_Enrich  size 
april 2009 by jerryking

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