Economy

Why Cyprus Losing its Tax Haven Status Will Surprise American Banks

Posted on March 25, 2013. Filed under: Economy, European Crisis, Financial Crisis | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Madeleine Albright, Edgar Perez and Condoleezza Rice at CME Group's Global Financial Leadership Conference 2012

Madeleine Albright, Edgar Perez and Condoleezza Rice @CMEGroup’s GFLC12

Cyprus is a small island in the Mediterranean Sea, located East of Greece and South of Turkey. Cyprus has always been a popular tourist destination receiving two million visitors who come to the beautiful white sand beaches to soak in the Mediterranean sun. Until a few weeks ago, Cyprus was a developed country well sought after as an offshore tax haven. As a member of the European Union, Cyprus had strict laws in place to protect the offshore financial sector. Cyprus could have been considered a low-tax haven since the country had a low tax regime in place for offshore companies and resident companies, paying just 10 percent, the lowest in the euro zone, below Ireland’s 12.5 percent and well under the 29.5 percent rate in Germany and 33.3 percent in France.

Fast forward to this Monday morning, and it was announced that the Eurogroup just reached an agreement with the Cypriot authorities on the key elements necessary for a macroeconomic adjustment program. The agreement was supported by all euro area member states (it was swiftly endorsed by euro zone finance ministers) as well as by the troika, the International Monetary Fund, European Central Bank and European Commission.

The program would address the exceptional challenges that Cyprus was facing and attempt to restore the viability of its financial sector, with the view of restoring sustainable growth and sound public finances over the coming years. How could they do that?

  1. Laiki (the second largest bank, also known as Cyprus Popular Bank, with a history that spanned beyond 110 years) is resolved immediately, with full contribution of equity shareholders, bond holders and uninsured depositors, based on a decision by the Central Bank of Cyprus.
  2. Laiki would be split into a good bank and a bad bank. The bad bank would be run down over time.
  3. The good bank would be folded into Bank of Cyprus (BoC), as one of its branches in Limassol experienced an explosion produced by a home-made bomb. It would take 9bn Euros of the Emergency Liquidity Assistance (ELA), the support given by central banks in exceptional circumstances and on a case-by-case basis to temporarily illiquid institutions and markets. Only uninsured deposits in BoC would remain frozen until recapitalization has been effected.
  4. The Governing Council of the ECB would provide liquidity to the BoC in line with applicable rules.
  5. BoC would be recapitalized through a deposit/equity conversion of uninsured deposits with full contribution of equity shareholders and bond holders.
  6. The conversion would be such that a capital ratio of 9 percent is secured by the end of the program.
  7. All insured depositors in all banks would be fully protected in accordance with the relevant EU legislation.
  8. The program money (up to 10bn Euros) would not be used to recapitalize Laiki or Bank of Cyprus.

It was expected that these measures would form the basis for restoring the viability of the financial sector. In particular, they safeguard all deposits below 100.000 Euros in accordance with EU principles, which were initially at risk based on a prior proposal. The program stressed that there would be an appropriate downsizing of the financial sector (Cypriot banks had assets equal to 750 percent of the country’s gross domestic product), with the domestic banking sector reaching the EU average by 2018 (less than half of the current ratio), while encouraging Cypriot authorities to step up efforts in the areas of fiscal consolidation, structural reforms and privatization, in addition to increasing the withholding tax on capital income and of the statutory corporate income tax rate.

What is the message that the incidents of the last week tell depositors around the world? Move your deposits out of Greece, Italy and Spain; think about outside Europe. While in the case of Cyprus a significant component came from Russian companies and individuals (an estimated $31 billion, according to Moody’s Investors Service), it is clear that the attitude of the European authorities is now to consider public deposits as the new ATM for governments, at least the uninsured deposits of 100.000 Euros or more . No matter what the authorities say to coat the pill (black money might have been present, savers have enjoyed years of high interest rates, etc.), this is a clear message that will reverberate throughout the continent: deposits are not safe anymore. The strict enforcement of the rule of law is gone, and with that the tax haven status that Cyprus worked so hard to build; Cyprus bet its future on it and lost.

Where deposits will go? America. Why? Says FDIC spokesperson David Barr: “During the current economic crisis, consumers have seen firsthand how the FDIC protects their money by swiftly making deposits available when a bank is closed. In the FDIC’s 80-year history, not a single depositor has ever lost a penny of insured money as a result of a bank failure. Our proven track record has helped prevent bank runs during some very difficult economic times.” It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand that deposits will be coming to America shores to earn almost zero, courtesy of Fed Chairman Bernanke; depositors worldwide now know that earning zero is definitely better than experiencing a 40 percent haircut, too bad it is too late for Cypriot (and Russian) depositors.

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The Correction in the US Equities Markets Nobody Wants to Talk About

Posted on March 17, 2013. Filed under: Companies, Debt Ceiling, Economy, Financial Crisis, Fiscal Cliff, Securities | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Edgar Perez, Author, The Speed Traders, and Knightmare on Wall Street

Edgar Perez, Author, The Speed Traders, and Knightmare on Wall Street

Stocks in the US markets slipped on Friday, ending the Dow Jones Industrial Average’s (DJIA) longest winning streak since 1996, just after snapping a 10-day run. Data from Thomson Reuters’ Lipper service showed that investors in U.S.-based funds had poured $11.26 billion of new cash into stock funds this last week, the most since late January. The DJIA slipped 25.03 points, or 0.17 percent, to 14,514.11 at the close. Meanwhile, it was announced that the fewest workers on record were fired in January and job openings rebounded, showing employers were gaining confidence the U.S. expansion would be sustained.

According to some pundits, recent market activity is essentially driven by positive corporate earnings. The S&P500 Price/Earnings (PE) ratio is currently slightly high at 16.5, if we compare with past indicators. The median S&P500 Trailing Twelve Months (TTM) PE ratio has been about 14.5 over the last 100 years; average is around 16. It was during much of 2009 when the disconnect between price and TTM earnings was so extreme that the P/E ratio was in triple digits, as high as the 120s. Going back to the 1870’s, the average P/E ratio has been about 15; therefore, the US equity markets are not excessively valued, leaving some room for further growth.

Other pundits point to the Federal Reserve’s determination to continue stimulating the economy with increased liquidity. Mohammed Apabhai, head of Asia trading at Citigroup Global Markets, favors this train of thought. He has noted that there is a 70 percent correlation between stock market performance and liquidity, “whether it’s through the promise of lower rates, QE (Quantitative Easing) or promise of more QE.” The Federal Reserve has launched three rounds of Quantitative Easing since the financial crisis hit in 2008.

More likely, both factors are in play, very good corporate earnings and monetary policy that pushes investors to take risks in equities. So is the earnings momentum sustainable? Unfortunately, savings from the smaller share of the pie from labor, government spending and earnings coming from emerging markets (EM) outside the US are all factors that will be curtailed at some moment. Is the Fed eager to continue being the huge player in this equation? Some of its members are increasingly worried about the effectiveness of the continued QE; if the labor market recovers, as the January numbers showed, the Fed most probably might be ending its bond purchases soon.

As pointed out by James Saft, wages in the US have taken a smaller and smaller piece of the pie; now below 44pc of GDP and dropping, down several percentage points since 1999. That is in part the consequence of globalization and the offshoring of jobs. However, the labor which can be offshored largely has already been and the likely trend is for new manufacturing technologies to start pushing jobs back into the US. As has been of national knowledge as well, there is a real danger of declining government spending. A dollar spent by the government is a dollar that supports household income, and consumption, and of course corporate profits; there will be less dollars starting this month thank to the sequester, a series of spending cuts and tax increases aimed at reducing the budget deficit.

Emerging markets are looking overstretched heading into the second quarter, Barclays Capital said in a report dated March 15, pointing out that the cyclical recoveries in EM have slowed down. Consensus growth forecasts (according to Bloomberg) have been revised down by 0.75 percentage points on average since mid-2012.  EM equities have been slow to react to these developments due partly to the continued inflows into the asset class from retail clients. The correction has started recently and the performance by country year to date has been mixed, but the most pronounced selloffs have been associated with the largest revisions to GDP growth forecasts. Adding to this dire situation, the economies of emerging markets grew at a slower pace in February than the month before, according to HSBC’s monthly purchasing managers’ index. The PMI recorded a level of 52.3, down from 53.8 in January, its lowest since August. The index covers 16 leading emerging markets, including India, Brazil and China, which all saw their rate of growth fall. Investors had been questioning whether emerging markets, whose growth depends in part on exports to mature markets, could continue to expand at fast rates of almost 10% in some cases.

What the equity markets want indeed is stable and/or predictably increasing US profits and the Fed to stay in the bond markets. Saft ironically suggested that markets’ best hope might be a cut in government spending deep enough to kill job growth and indefinitely extend QE, something that nobody else would agree with. Instead, markets would be happy with a bit of positive news today followed by another bit of negative news tomorrow. Unfortunately for the markets, profits will start showing stagnation starting with first quarter results. Federal Reserve said in September 2012, when QE3 was announced, that it would start pumping $40 billion a month to purchase agency mortgage-backed securities (MBS) until the labor market improves substantially. When will the Fed determine that the job market has made enough progress to reduce stimulus? The numbers for February will prove paramount in this regard. As these two important factors converge in a nightmarish scenario, equities markets should beware of the ensuing correction, coming as early as in the second quarter.

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Yuri Milner’s Wishful Thinking? Facebook, Google and Wikipedia Will Stay Dominant For Only 10 Years

Posted on March 10, 2013. Filed under: Companies, Economy, Private Equity, Technology, Venture Capital | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Yuri Milner, co-founder and chief executive officer of DST

Yuri Milner, co-founder and chief executive officer of DST (Photo: Forbes)

In an interview at the South by Southwest Interactive conference in Austin, Texas, Yuri Milner, the Russian investor whose early bet on Mark Zuckerberg’s firm made him a billionaire, said companies like Facebook, Google and Wikipedia will still exist a century from now because their services gain momentum the more people use them. “All three have amazing network effects,” said Milner, the co-founder and chief executive officer of DST. “Chances are that those are long survivors.”

Milner has long believed that the internet would develop into a “global brain”, which is often described as an intelligent network of individuals and machines, functioning as a nervous system for the planet Earth. He also has envisaged that the advent of the Internet of things and ever increasing use of social media and participatory systems such as Twitter, Facebook, and Wikipedia would increase our collective intelligence.

Richard Foster, the Creative Destruction author referred by Forbes as The Wizard of Innovation and speaker at China Leaders Forum, was in the 80s in a search for “the excellent company”, the all-seeing, all-knowing, all-wise company that made all the right moves in advance, and that made more money for its shareholders than any of its competitors. This was the permanent outperformer stock, the really good deal, he said. Foster looked at 4,000 companies over 40 years; he concluded there was no such company, and there never had been such a company! No company had been able to outperform the market for any substantial length of time. (GE once came as close as any, but didn’t do any better than the overall market index, Foster reflects). Somehow the market, managed by nobody in particular, was performing better than all the brains on the planet.

Why is it that no company can outperform the markets for a long time? Foster thinks there are several reasons, but the most important is something called legacy cost. All companies have legacy costs, which are created the moment a company makes a commitment of time or resources to a particular course of action. And when a company is challenged to do something new, to take a new course of action, it has a hard time abandoning its legacy costs. Companies argue that the incremental cost of making a slight improvement to an existing product or service is much better than the full cost of developing something new from scratch. In doing so, the company attempts to optimize between the old and the new. This takes the decision making power away from the customer, and it’s a bad direction to go in. Markets, however, just charge on ahead with the new, because new entrants don’t have any legacy costs to deal with.

Just last week, Facebook’s new News Feed made some welcome cosmetic changes. But it didn’t go very far in addressing the social network’s deeper issues. Fortune’s Kevin Kelleher talks about the vulnerabilities Facebook is facing since it went public. Facebook is facing more powerful competitors and two important yet sometimes contradictory mandates, to create a service that will engage its users, and to make money that will satisfy investors; Facebook’s presentation played down those facts. How intrusive these ads strike users will depends on the algorithms Facebook designs to insert them in feeds.

So while Facebook’s new news feed makes some cosmetic fixes that users are likely to welcome in time, they don’t go very far in addressing rising competition from newer social networks and the uneasy balancing act between users and advertisers. Those are the legacy costs Foster refers too, which new entrants that will grow into becoming new leaders never face. Legacy costs never stopped Wikipedia and Google from dethroning leading institutions called Britannic Encyclopedia and Yahoo!

To think that new companies will take a century to remove Facebook, Wikipedia or Google from their leadership positions is no more than wishful thinking; these firms have at most 10 years to milk their cows and make the big decision: change or die. While Milner appears not to have a vested interest in Wikipedia or Google, he might as well start cashing in on his already wildly profitable Facebook bet. Somebody in some garage is already building a better mousetrap.

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Is High-Frequency Trading the Root of our Problems? It is the Economy, Stupid!

Posted on February 21, 2013. Filed under: Conference, Debt Ceiling, Economy, Financial Crisis, Fiscal Cliff, Flash Crash, Securities and Exchange Commission | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Edgar Perez, Author, 'The Speed Traders' and 'Knightmare in Wall Street'

Edgar Perez, Author, ‘The Speed Traders’ and ‘Knightmare in Wall Street’

Beyond the memories of the recent financial crisis and doubts about the safety and fairness of the equity markets, events such as the Flash Crash of May 2010, the hugely distressing Facebook NASDAQ initial public offering and trading malfunctions at Knight Capital and Nasdaq OMX were wrongly associated with high-frequency trading (HFT) and characterized as shocks to the psyche of average investors. The around $130 billion outflows from domestic equity mutual funds in 2012 led to Joe Saluzzi, co-head of trading at Themis Trading, to say as recently as of December 2012 that “all of those events are confidence-shattering events.”

Furthermore, U.S. congressman Ed Markey tried to persuade the SEC that high-frequency trading was driving investors off the electronic trading highway completely because it was eroding confidence in U.S. markets. Congressman Markey wrote that “sophisticated trading firms can make full use of light speed HFT algorithms, while the ordinary investor day-trading his 401k remains at more terrestrial speeds. There is a real risk that algorithmic trading is making investors hesitant to re-enter the equity markets because they fear that the entire game is rigged.” Ultimately, he proposed that HFT should be curtailed immediately.

Data from Trim Tabs Investment Research appeared to support Mr. Saluzzi and Congressman Markey’s concerns. Their data show outflows from U.S. equity mutual funds in 2008 hit a record $148 billion; in 2009, confidence appeared to be stabilizing as outflows from U.S. equity mutual funds totaled just $28 billion, only to grow again in 2010 to hit $81 billion, $132 billion in 2011 and last year totaled $130 billion. So what would they say now that the Washington-based Investment Company Institute has revealed that equity mutual funds have gathered $29.9 billion in January’s first three weeks, more than for any full month since 2006? Moreover, long-term funds, which exclude money-market vehicles, attracted $64.8 billion in the first three weeks of the month. The previous record was $52.6 billion for all of May 2009.

What was the catalyst of the change in trend? Was HFT suddenly disappearing from the equity markets? As we have suspected in the past, it was the health of the economy. The dysfunctional behavior of the leadership in Washington, leading to a crisis of significant proportions in December 2012, was holding market participants from making investment decisions; when Washington still managed to temporarily solve the fiscal cliff issue, allowing the government to remove its borrowing cap and removing the terrifying prospect of sovereign default, investors rushed into stocks (and bonds too), setting the stage for the biggest month on record for deposits into U.S. mutual funds.

We are looking at forces beyond the niche of algorithmic and high-frequency trading in action here. Signs of improvement in the U.S. economy and a rising stock market (that pushed the Dow Jones Industrial Average above 14,000 on February 1 for the first time since 2007) are now prompting Americans to step up their investments. Hiring climbed in January as well, providing further evidence that the U.S. labor market is making progress. As the economy overall makes progress, inflows will increase as more and more households and companies start to invest in the financial markets, creating a net impact in the real economy, and further reinforcing the performance of the markets. Once again, the phrase “it is the economy, stupid!” remains as valid as ever.

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高频交易是否问题的根源?

Posted on February 6, 2013. Filed under: Debt Ceiling, Economy, Financial Crisis, Fiscal Cliff, Securities, Securities and Exchange Commission | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Speed Traders: An Insider’s Look at the New High-Frequency Trading Phenomenon That is Transforming the Investing World

“高频交易”(High-frequency Trade),是指大型投资机构利用自己的高速计算机,在极短时间内判断出有价值的信息,从而先于市场的其他投资者进行交易,这种交易的特点是大量不停地买卖。

文/新浪财经北美特约撰稿人埃德加-佩雷兹[微博]

2010年5月的“闪电崩盘”及Facebook在骑士资本和纳斯达克的IPO交易故障等事件,都被错误地与高频交易联系到一起,被描绘为对普通投资者造成灵魂冲击。但真正原因是经济健康问题。It is the economy, stupid。这个短语仍旧有效。

除了与最近一次金融危机有关的记忆以及有关股票市场安全性和公平性的疑问以外,2010年5月份的“闪电崩盘”及Facebook在骑士资本和纳斯达克市场上令人感到非常沮丧的IPO(首次公开招股)交易故障等事件都被错误地与高频交易联系到一起,被描绘为对普通投资者造成了灵魂冲击。

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The Fiscal Cliff Debacle: American Exceptionalism Under Attack

Posted on January 2, 2013. Filed under: Debt Ceiling, Economy, Financial Crisis, Fiscal Cliff | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Madeleine Albright, Edgar Perez and Condoleezza Rice at CME Group's Global Financial Leadership Conference 2012

Edgar Perez with Madeleine Albright and Condoleezza Rice, former U.S. Secretaries of State for Presidents Clinton and Bush, respectively

Last night, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a bill undoing tax increases for more than 99% of households, providing a temporary victory to President Obama and Democrats as Republicans vowed to fight them in the upcoming months for spending cuts in exchange for raising the debt ceiling. The 257-167 vote just before midnight topped a drama-filled day as Republicans initially balked at a bipartisan Senate measure. Ultimately 151 of 236 Republicans voted no. Obama said he’d sign the bill into law.

The final days of the tension surrounding the fiscal cliff of scheduled tax increases and spending cuts illustrated once again the partisan struggle that has made U.S. budget policy unpredictable and prone to crises as deadlines loom. Obama wielded the leverage he gained in his November 6 re-election, securing most of the tax increases he sought without sacrificing the spending cuts he had offered to Republicans in hopes of a larger deficit-reduction grand bargain.

Republicans immediately turned to their next battle, a bid to use the need to raise the nation’s $16.4 trillion debt ceiling to force Obama to accept cuts in entitlement programs such as Medicare. Congress must act as early as mid-February to prevent a default and the dispute may reprise a similar August 2011 episode that led to a downgrade of the U.S. credit rating.

Is the U.S. able to continue giving lessons in American exceptionalism to a world that still respects and admire its past and present? How to explain to the world that current representatives of the American people are able to drive the country so close to a fiscal cliff, potentially dragging the rest of the world? No doubt the majority of Americans have stared at this show with disbelief and puzzlement. Until not so long ago, Americans believed politicians wouldn’t make things so difficult and would reach instead a measured and timely deal. Things didn’t have to go this far to technically miss the deadline.

The answer can be found inside our legal system through the constitution and its twenty seven amendments. In this particular case, section 4 of the fourteenth amendment to the United States Constitution gives the President unilateral authority to raise or ignore the national debt ceiling, and that if challenged the Supreme Court would likely rule in favor of expanded executive power or dismiss the case altogether for lack of standing, as argued by Jeffrey Rosen, legal affairs editor of The New Republic. Furthermore, the president’s role as the ultimate guardian of the constitutional order, charged with taking care that the laws be faithfully executed, provides him with the authority to raise the debt ceiling, as argued by Eric Posner, professor of law at the University of Chicago, and Adrian Vermeule, professor of law at Harvard University.

After the Great Recession of the 1920s, as President Franklin Roosevelt was moving ahead with his plans to confront the economic crisis, he hinted darkly that “it is to be hoped that the normal balance of executive and legislative authority may be wholly equal, wholly adequate to meet the unprecedented task before us. But it may be that an unprecedented demand and need for undelayed action may call for temporary departure from that normal balance of public procedure.” After this admonition, Congress gave Roosevelt the authorities he sought and he did have to follow through on his threat.

Last night Obama said he won’t “have another debate with this Congress over whether or not they should pay the bills they’ve already racked up.” Let’s just hope that President Obama, a former constitutional law professor himself, has the insight and courage to execute the agenda he was elected for leveraging all the tools provided within our constitutional framework. If he is successful, God bless him. If he fails, the American people will kick his party out of the White House in 2016. There is no excuse for inaction; there is no need for more drama; there is no time for more posturing; ultimately, there is no reason to hold America from displaying the exceptionalism Alexis de Tocqueville recognized centuries ago and the world expects for centuries to come.

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The Speed Traders Workshop 2012: News Coverage From China Business Network (CBN)

Posted on June 13, 2012. Filed under: Economy, Exchanges, Operations, Practitioners, Private Equity, Regulations, Securities, Strategies | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Mr. Edgar Perez, Director of The Speed Traders Workshop

Edgar Perez援引数据介绍指出,目前在美国证券市场中的整体成交金额中有56%来自高频交易,而这种交易手法也是伴随着科技的发展、市场的竞争、以及监管政策的变化,在证券市场中自然演进所出现的。

频交易研究专家Edgar Perez近日在与第一财经采访时表示,高频交易是一种专注于“速度(speed)”的投资方法,主要以先进的电脑技术和设备寻求在极短时间内的获利,然 而这种投资方法与巴菲特的“价值投资”哲学并不矛盾,亦有助投资者能跳出经济周期和宏观大环境的制约,寻找到不为外界环境所左右的“阿尔法”值(即超出市 场基准的收益回报)。

Edgar Perez援引数据介绍指出,目前在美国证券市场中的整体成交金额中有56%来自高频交易,而这种交易手法也是伴随着科技的发展、市场的竞争、以及监管政策的变化,在证券市场中自然演进所出现的。

高频交易主要以电脑完成交易,数据处理可以在毫秒(0.001秒)之间,人力根本无法与之匹配,因此该种交易主要依赖先进的科学技术和电脑算法。高频交易的主要策略包括电子化交易、趋势追踪、相对价值套利、流动性监测、新闻解读分析和投资基金方法等。

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The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 Shanghai at Hult International Business School

Posted on June 3, 2012. Filed under: Economy, Event Announcements, Exchanges, Fixed Income, Practitioners, Private Equity, Securities, Strategies, Technology | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Mr. Edgar Perez, Author of          The Speed Traders

Edgar Perez, Author, The Speed Traders, Speaker at The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 Shanghai: How Algorithmic and High Frequency Traders Leverage Profitable Strategies to Find Alpha in Equities, Options, Futures and FX, June 6

New York, NY, May 26, 2012 — Edgar Perez will be the presenter at upcoming The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 Shanghai: How Algorithmic and High Frequency Traders Leverage Profitable Strategies to Find Alpha in Equities, Options, Futures and FX, June 6, to be held at Hult International Business School’ Shanghai campus.

Hult International Business School (formerly known as the Arthur D. Little School of Management) is a top business school with campuses in Boston, San Francisco, London, Dubai and Shanghai. It offers a range of business-focused degree programs including MBA, Executive MBA, Master and Undergraduate degrees. Hult is affiliated with the privately held company EF Education First and is named for EF’s founder, Bertil Hult. The school is incorporated as Hult International Business School, Inc., which is a not-for-profit organization incorporated under Massachusetts law.

Hult has a list of faculty which is on par with other business schools, and includes many faculty members from colleges in the northeast of the USA. Some of the Hult faculty also teaches at Babson College, Harvard, INSEAD and other business schools.

Hult organizes the Hult Global Case Challenge, an annual international case competition that takes on global social challenges by generating ideas and solutions from students from around the world. The organization is a member of the Clinton Global Initiative. At the event, student teams of five from business schools from around the world are invited to participate at one of five international locations where teams compete to develop the best solutions around the proposed challenge area. Cities of competition include Boston, San Francisco, London, Dubai and Shanghai, where The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 will be held.

Mr. Perez, author of The Speed Traders, An Insider’s Look at the New High-Frequency Trading Phenomenon That is Transforming the Investing World, published by McGraw-Hill Inc. (2011) and currently being translated into Chinese, has been engaged to present to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, CFA Singapore, Hong Kong Securities Institute, Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences at New York University and Pace University, among other institutions. In addition, Mr. Perez has spoken at Harvard Business School’s Venture Capital & Private Equity Conference (Boston), High-Frequency Trading Leaders Forum (New York, Chicago, Hong Kong, Sao Paulo, London, Singapore), MIT Sloan Investment Management Conference (Cambridge), High-Frequency Trading Happy Hour (New York), Institutional Investor’s Global Growth Markets Forum (London), Technical Analysis Society (Singapore), TradeTech Asia (Singapore), FIXGlobal Face2Face (Seoul), 2nd Private Equity Convention Russia, CIS & Eurasia (London), among other global forums.

Mr. Perez is one of the great business networkers and motivators on the lecture circuit; he is available worldwide for the following speaking engagements: Present and Future of High-Frequency Trading, The Real Story behind the “Flash Crash”, Networking for Financial Executives, and Business Networking for Success.

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Miss It at Your Own Risk: World’s Only High Frequency Trading Seminar, Now in China

Posted on June 1, 2012. Filed under: Economy, Event Announcements, Exchanges, Fixed Income, Practitioners, Private Equity, Securities, Strategies, Technology | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Speed Traders Workshop 2012

Edgar Perez, Author, The Speed Traders, Speaker at The Speed Traders Workshop 2012: How Algorithmic and High Frequency Traders Leverage Profitable Strategies to Find Alpha in Equities, Options, Futures and FX, Shanghai (June 6)

Mr. Edgar Perez, author, The Speed Traders, and former McKinsey & Co. consultant, is leading the world’s only high frequency trading seminar, aptly called The Speed Traders Workshop 2012: How Algorithmic and High Frequency Traders Leverage Profitable Strategies to Find Alpha in Equities, Options, Futures and FX, for the first time in China.  The Speed Traders Workshop will next take place in Shanghai on June 6.

Mr. Edgar Perez is widely regarded as the preeminent speaker in the specialized area of high-frequency trading.  He is author of The Speed Traders, An Insider’s Look at the New High-Frequency Trading Phenomenon That is Transforming the Investing World, published by McGraw-Hill Inc. (2011) in English and China Financial Publishing House (2012) in Chinese. In addition, Mr. Edgar Perez is course director of The Speed Traders Workshop 2012, How Algorithmic and High Frequency Traders Leverage Profitable Strategies to Find Alpha in Equities, Options, Futures and FX (Hong Kong, Sao Paulo, Seoul, Kuala Lumpur, Warsaw and Kiev).

Mr. Edgar Perez has been featured on CNBC Cash Flow (with Oriel Morrison), CNBC Squawk Box (with Geoff Cutmore), BNN Business Day (with Kim Parlee), TheStreet.com (with Gregg Greenberg), Channel NewsAsia Business Tonight and Cents & Sensibilities (with Lin Xue Ling), NHK World, iMoney Hong Kong, Hedge Fund Brief, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Dallas Morning News, Valor Econômico, FIXGlobal Trading, TODAY Online, Oriental Daily News and Business Times.

In the last months, Mr. Edgar Perez has been engaged to present to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, CFA Singapore, Hong Kong Securities Institute, Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences at New York University and Pace University, among other institutions. In addition, Mr. Edgar Perez has spoken at Harvard Business School’s Venture Capital & Private Equity Conference (Boston), High-Frequency Trading Leaders Forum (New York, Chicago, Hong Kong, Sao Paulo, London, Singapore), MIT Sloan Investment Management Conference (Cambridge), High-Frequency Trading Happy Hour (New York), Institutional Investor’s Global Growth Markets Forum (London), Technical Analysis Society (Singapore), TradeTech Asia (Singapore), FIXGlobal Face2Face (Seoul), 2nd Private Equity Convention Russia, CIS & Eurasia (London), among other global forums.

The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 will reveal how high-frequency trading players are succeeding in the global markets and driving the development of algorithmic trading at breakneck speeds from the U.S. and Europe to India, Singapore and Brazil. The Speed Traders Workshop 2012 kicks off a series of presentations in the world’s most important financial centers: Jakarta, Indonesia, June 13; Mexico City, Mexico, July 27; Hong Kong, August 4, and Moscow, Russia, August 10.

Mr. Edgar Perez is one of the great business networkers and motivators on the business circuit; he is available worldwide for the following speaking engagements: Present and Future of High-Frequency Trading, The Real Story behind the “Flash Crash”, Networking for Financial Executives, and Business Networking for Success.

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Trying to Blame High-frequency Trading for Facebook’s Nasdaq IPO Eclipse? Look Elsewhere

Posted on May 21, 2012. Filed under: Economy, Exchanges, Regulations, Securities and Exchange Commission, Technology | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Speed Traders Workshop 2012, How High Frequency Traders Leverage Profitable Strategies to Find Alpha in Equities, Options, Futures and FXBob Greifeld, Nasdaq OMX’s Chief Executive Officer, has said on Sunday that the 20-minute delay in trading of Facebook’s $16bn offering last Friday had been caused by a millisecond systems blip due to the largest IPO auction “in the history of mankind”. The exchange had found itself in the spotlight after Facebook failed to deliver a first-day “pop” to investors, instead almost falling below its issuing price of $38. The shares, having risen briefly, quickly fell away to close the day with a gain of just 0.6%, at $38.23.

The fact that the glitch is just coming just weeks after BATS Global Markets, a firm that catered mainly to speed traders, was forced to withdraw its IPO after technical problems, nicely plays into the hands of critics who blame high-frequency trading for all types of financial and economic malaise.

For instance, Giuseppe Vegas, Chairman of Consob, Commissione Nazionale per le Società e la Borsa, Italy, suggested last week that high-frequency trading may pose systemic threats to markets and warrant bans. “Legislators and authorities need to ask themselves if certain types of innovation are good or bad for savers,” Vegas said in a speech at the Italian securities market regulator’s annual meeting in Milan today. Legislators shouldn’t hold back from “simply banning the spreading of dangerous practices and products,” he said.

“Financial innovation can be positive but legislators and authorities must avoid that it becomes a mechanism that wipes out families’ savings,” he said. That begs the question of the real possibility of high-frequency trading having any impact on families’ savings.

Nasdaq has now laid out the details of the glitch. In spite of testing 1bn in trading volumes under 100 scenarios, the exchange was caught by surprise when cancellations of trades kept interrupting the computer system’s attempt to complete the auction and produce an initial price for Facebook’s opening. Nasdaq says it designed its “IPO cross”, the process of calculating the opening price, in such a way that would allow continuous trading through an auction at the behest of its customers and has used the system in previous IPOs.

But in processing the huge volume of Facebook trades, it added two milliseconds to the time it took to produce an opening price. In those extra two milliseconds, orders to cancel the trades kept interrupting the auction process. That doesn’t seem to touch high-frequency trading at all, as shares were not even changing hands yet. As a result of the glitch the exchange decided to print the opening trade manually but was then forced to delay the process of confirming individual trades.

Systems blips and glitches will always happen as humans cannot possibly test all scenarios technical implementations will face. People can take advantage of financial innovation in a number of ways and it’s the role of regulators to make sure these ways are within the existing legal framework. Financial innovation travels fast and now becomes not a challenge for single regulatory bodies but for all of them to coordinate the best way to approach regulation and keep markets transparent and fair for all participants worldwide.

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Asia Investing Panel Moderated by Edgar Perez Drawing Biggest Audience at Venture Capital & Private Equity Conference at Harvard Business School

Posted on February 21, 2012. Filed under: Book Review, Economy, Event Announcements, Financial Crisis | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Speed Traders Workshop 2012, How High Frequency Traders Leverage Profitable Strategies to Find Alpha in Equities, Options, Futures and FX

Edgar Perez, Author, The Speed Traders

Mr. Edgar Perez, author of The Speed Traders, An Insider’s Look at the New High-Frequency Trading Phenomenon That is Transforming the Investing World (http://www.thespeedtraders.com), moderated the popular Investing in Asia panel at the 18th Annual Venture Capital and Private Equity Conference at Harvard Business School, held in Boston, February 17-18, 2012.

According to the organizers, the Investing in Asia panel drew more than 200 participants for what became an insightful and enlightening discussion led by Mr. Perez. The panel reviewed investing opportunities in the biggest continent of the world, focusing on private equity activity in the major financial centers, including China, Hong Kong, Japan and Indonesia. Distinguished members of the panel included Melissa Ma (Asia Alternatives Capital), Christoph Mueller (Shaw Kwei & Partners), Guang Yang (Finergy Capital) and Ming Zhang (Institute of World Economics and Politics).

The 18th Annual Venture Capital and Private Equity Conference is the largest and most anticipated student-run conference at Harvard Business School. Over 900 students, alumni, faculty and industry professionals joined Mr. Perez and dozens of speakers for a day to gather knowledge and share experiences. Keynote speakers included Daniel A. D’Aniello, Founder, The Carlyle Group; Guy Hands, Founder & Chairman, Terra Firma; C. Richard Kramlich, Chairman & Co-Founder, New Enterprise Associates; and Alexander Navab, Co-Head of North American Private Equity, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co.

Mr. Perez is widely regarded as the preeminent speaker in the specialized areas of high-frequency trading and Asia investing. He is author of The Speed Traders, An Insider’s Look at the New High-Frequency Trading Phenomenon That is Transforming the Investing World, and is currently writing a book on investment opportunities in Indonesia, the world’s 4th most populous country.

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‘How Speed Traders Leverage Cutting-Edge Strategies in the Post-Flash Crash World’ at São Paulo School of Economics, Fundação Getulio Vargas, with Edgar Perez

Posted on January 13, 2012. Filed under: Economy, Event Announcements, Flash Crash, Strategies | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

'How Speed Traders Leverage Cutting-Edge Strategies in the Post-Flash Crash World' at São Paulo School of Economics, Fundação Getulio Vargas, with Edgar Perez, The Speed Traders Workshop 2012

São Paulo School of Economics, Fundação Getulio Vargas

Edgar Perez will deliver an exclusive presentation on ‘How Speed Traders Leverage Cutting-Edge Strategies in the Post-Flash Crash World’ to students, faculty and alumni of the Escola de Economia de São Paulo da Fundação Getulio Vargas (FGV-EESP), Brazil, January 30th, 2012. Mr. Perez, the author of The Speed Traders, Modern Finance Bookof 2012, will review current developments in the algorithmic and high frequency worlds and opportunities and challenges for the industry moving forward.

São Paulo School of Economics (Escola de Economia de São Paulo) started the activities of its undergraduate course in 2004. Before that, the undergraduation activities of Fundação Getulio Vargas, in São Paulo, concentrated in the areas of public and private business administration. However, since the 80´s FGV already offered graduation courses in Economics at FGV-EAESP. Thus, aiming at enlarging the scope of its action, it created São Paulo School of Economics, encompassing the undergraduate course, the academic and professional graduate courses and the continuing education and specialization courses in Economics. In creating São Paulo School of Economics FGV had as its purpose the advancement of a centre of excellence in learning and research which contributed to the economic and social development of the country and to the pursuit of a national identity.

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Long-Term Investors’ Fears Driving Increased Volatility

Posted on August 29, 2011. Filed under: Economy, Financial Crisis, Flash Crash, Strategies, Technology | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Speed Traders' Edgar Perez with BNN's Kim Parlee

The Speed Traders' Edgar Perez with BNN's Kim Parlee

For Edgar Perez, author of The Speed Traders, An Insider’s Look at the New High-Frequency Trading Phenomenon That is Transforming the Investing World (http://www.thespeedtraders.com), increased volatility experienced by financial markets is being driven by long-term investors’ fears. Mr. Perez, who was recently featured on BNN’s Business Day and interviewed by Kim Parlee, reflected that similar concerns drove volatility to record heights during the Great Depression and Black Monday.

The stock market crash on October 29, 1929 set in motion a series of events that led to the Great Depression, but in fact, the American economy and global economy had been in turmoil six months prior to Black Tuesday, and a variety of factors before and after that fateful date in October caused and exacerbated the Great Depression. While America prospered during the 1920s, most of Europe, still reeling from the devastation of World War I, fell into economic decline. America soon became the world’s banker, and as Europe started defaulting on loans and buying less American products, the Great Depression spread. With only loose stock market regulations in place before the Great Depression, investors were able speculate wildly, buying stocks on margin, needing only 10% of the price of a stock to be able to complete the purchase. Rampant speculation led to falsely high stock prices, and when the stock market began to tumble in the months leading up to the October 1929 crash, speculative investors couldn’t make their margin calls, and a massive sell-off began. While the great rise in the stock market (from 181 points in early 1928 to 381 points in September 1929) was fueled by optimism and false hope, the plunge was flamed by stark fear.

Similar situation happened on Black Monday, the name given to Monday, October 19, 1987, when stock markets around the world ‘crashed’, shedding a huge value in a very short period. The crash began in Hong Kong, spread west through international time zones to Europe, hitting the United States after other markets had already declined by a significant margin. At the time, economists feared that if the U.S. economy faltered, the entire world economy would stumble and fall into recession again, as it had in 1981–82. Many observers now believe the panic of Black Monday simply reflected a spreading fear that the world situation was rapidly becoming unmanageable.

Fast forward to 2011, CNN’s Richard Quest concludes too that the causes of this latest crisis are fear, worry and concern, three uncomfortable bedfellows that have wreaked havoc on the world’s financial markets. “What pushed everyone over the edge was the debt ceiling debacle and the downgrading of U.S. debt by ratings agency Standard & Poor’s, that was followed by a 630 point fall in the Dow Jones index.”

Fear that the world situation is becoming unmanageable is driving long-term investors to dump equities and look for protection in less risky instruments, ironically, recently S&P downgraded U.S. treasuries. Economists at JPMorgan, in their weekly reprise of economic developments, blamed the recent global stock selloff on “a sense of policy paralysis in the U.S. and Europe, which has driven home the point that there is no cavalry to ride to the rescue.” While the sentiment is the same as in the 20s, 1987 and now, certain market participants will always look for a culprit, role played by high-frequency trading this time. No doubt if another crisis comes our way in the future, another group will receive the blame, only to be absolved by financial historians.

The Speed Traders' Edgar Perez on Canada's BNN's Business Day

The Speed Traders' Edgar Perez on BNN's Business Day

BNN’s Business Day puts a spotlight on the stocks and stories expected to move the markets, and then switches to minute-by-minute coverage throughout the trading day in Canada and the U.S. Kim Parlee, Marty Cej, Frances Horodelski, and Martin Baccardax along with BNN‘s team of reporters and expert guests provide comprehensive reporting along with the best background and analysis in the business. Business News Network (BNN) is the Canadian English language cable television business channel; BNNbroadcasts programming related to business and financial news and analysis.

The Speed Traders, published by McGraw-Hill Inc., is the most comprehensive, revealing work available on the most important development in trading in generations. High-frequency trading will no doubt play an ever larger role as computer technology advances and the global exchanges embrace fast electronic access. The Speed Traders explains everything there is to know about how today’s high-frequency traders make millions—one cent at a time. In this new title, The Speed Traders, Mr. Perez opens the door to the secretive world of high-frequency trading. Inside, prominent figures drop their guard and speak with unprecedented candidness about their trade. For more about The Speed Traders, readers can visit its Facebook and Twitter pages, as well as the most popular online retailers, including Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Borders, among others.

Mr. Perez is widely regarded as the pre-eminent networker in the specialized area of high-frequency trading. He has been featured on CNBC Cash Flow with Oriel Morrison (http://video.cnbc.com/gallery/?video=2023403523), BNN Business Day with Kim Parlee (http://watch.bnn.ca/business-day/august-2011/business-day-august-19-2011/#clip519647), TheStreet.com with Gregg Greenberg (http://www.thestreet.com/video/11144274/high-frequency-traders-not-the-enemy.html), and Channel NewsAsia Cent & Sensibilities with Lin Xue Ling, and engaged as speaker at Harvard Business School’s 17th Annual Venture Capital & Private Equity Conference, High-Frequency Trading Leaders Forum 2011 (New York, Chicago, Hong Kong, Sao Paulo, Singapore), CFA Singapore, Hong Kong Securities Institute, Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences at New York University (New York), Global Growth Markets Forum (London), Technical Analysis Society (Singapore), Middle East Hedge Funds Investors Summit 2012 (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia), among other global forums.

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Edgar Perez, Author, The Speed Traders, to Present at Middle East Hedge Funds Investors Summit 2012, Dubai, UAE

Posted on August 17, 2011. Filed under: Economy, Event Announcements, Financial Crisis, Flash Crash, Technology | Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

The Speed Traders: An Insider’s Look at the New High-Frequency Trading Phenomenon That is Transforming the Investing World

The Speed Traders, by Edgar Perez

Mr. Edgar Perez, author of The Speed Traders, An Insider’s Look at the New High-Frequency Trading Phenomenon That is Transforming the Investing World (http://www.thespeedtraders.com), will present at upcoming Middle East Hedge Funds Investors Summit 2012, January 22-24, Dubai, UAE, on “The Present and Future of High-Frequency Trading”. The Middle East Hedge Funds Investors Summit 2012 is the region’s premier meeting place for Middle East Institutional Investors, SWFs, Pension and Insurance Funds, HNWIs, Investment Houses and Family Offices. In an exclusive association with CNBC Arabiya, Middle East Hedge Funds Investors Summit 2012 offers unique access to the region’s alternatives and hedge funds investors and an expert speaker faculty featuring Regional Investors, Economists, and Investment gurus, Wealth Managers, Strategists and Star Managers.

The Middle East Hedge Funds Investors Summit 2012 will bring insights from top Middle East investors on how and why Middle East investors are responding as New Portfolio Managers with New Mandates post Madoff. With Middle East investors contributing on a host of influential topics and panels, attendees will get real insight into what needs to be done and required by these Middle East investors to overcome the hurdles for successful hedge fund investing. Attendees will hear the latest investment strategies discussed to get an in depth analysis of the Investors take on the key issues of Liquidity, Risk, Transparency, Portfolio Management, Due Manager Selection, Benchmarking and the performance of Managers, Funds and Alpha.

The Speed Traders, published by McGraw-Hill Inc., is the most comprehensive, revealing work available on the most important development in trading in generations. High-frequency trading will no doubt play an ever larger role as computer technology advances and the global exchanges embrace fast electronic access. The Speed Traders explains everything there is to know about how today’s high-frequency traders make millions—one cent at a time. In this new title, The Speed Traders, Mr. Perez opens the door to the secretive world of high-frequency trading. Inside, prominent figures drop their guard and speak with unprecedented candidness about their trade.

Mr. Perez is one of the great business networkers and motivators on the lecture circuit; he is available worldwide for the following speaking engagements: Present and Future of High-Frequency Trading, The Real Story behind the “Flash Crash”, Networking for Financial Executives, and Business Networking for Success

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For Edgar Perez, Author, The Speed Traders, Increased Volumes and Volatility to Feed High-Frequency Trading on Monday

Posted on August 6, 2011. Filed under: Economy, Exchanges, Financial Crisis, Fixed Income, Securities | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

For Edgar Perez, Author, The Speed Traders, S&P Debt Downgrade Wake-Up Call to Get Serious about U.S. EconomyMr. Edgar Perez, author of The Speed Traders, An Insider’s Look at the New High-Frequency Trading Phenomenon That is Transforming the Investing World (http://www.thespeedtraders.com), wrote on Modern Finance Report (http://www.modernfinancereport.com) that a short-term stock plunge (increase of volume) and a spike in volatility on Monday are reasonably expected given S&P’s downgrade of the U.S. debt rating; the U.S. stock market was coming off its worst week since the financial crisis. “So we have here two of the main requirements for high-frequency trading, volume and volatility. Therefore, it will be reasonable to expect Monday to be a busy day for speed traders, as they provide the liquidity long-term investors will need to survive the day.”
Mr. Perez indicated that he would not be inclined to kill the messenger and instead see S&P’s decision in a positive light as it should serve as an effective wake-up call to get Washington’s warring players to the negotiating table again. He gave the example of S&P’s past decision to put the UK’s AAA-rating on negative outlook in May 2009, which fueled a debate on the need for significant fiscal tightening, and tough decisions taken by the new coalition government, which were eventually rewarded by S&P with the UK’s outlook being revised back up to stable in October last year.

Mr. Perez wrote: “We cannot deny the significant psychological impact of S&P’s decision on the markets and the view of foreign governments and investors of the U.S. economy. However, I expect Monday’ stock plunge to be a short-term event that will lose steam quickly. In fact, investors can be tempted to use it as reason to snatch value plays, as there would have not been a fundamental change from where we were last Friday. At the end of the day, S&P’s main theme, that U.S. finances are in bad shape, is not news to investors and traders; for instance, Pimco, the world’s largest bond fund, had stepped away from US government debt back in March; in addition, savvy money managers had already positioned themselves for a potential rating downgrade.”

For Edgar Perez, Author, The Speed Traders, S&P Debt Downgrade Wake-Up Call to Get Serious about U.S. EconomyFinally, he summarized: “I agree with experts who sustain that the downgrade will not lead to sharp rises of lending rates to the corporate sector or households in the U.S., as Fitch and Moody’s still maintain their top rating for U.S. debt. Also, a sudden sell off of U.S. Treasury instruments looks unlikely, as there are still not many safe assets to replace them. Once the dust settles, attention will turn back to the economic fundamentals. Disregarding the S&P downgrade comes with high risk for the U.S. economy, particularly if Washington prioritizes electoral concerns over the long-term health of this great nation, the United States of America.”

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