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tv   Bloomberg Markets European Close  Bloomberg  February 18, 2021 11:00am-12:01pm EST

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guy: from london, i'm guy johnson. alix steel is in new york. counting down to the european close. the ecb warning progress is to slow. european stocks drop as earnings role in. the biggest drop, credit suisse. we will hear from klm. massive recapitalization. vw shares spike as the auto giant is considering a separate listing. that is the one area, auto stocks, leading european equities higher. stoxx 600 down. not true in the currency markets. the dollar is recovering.
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the pound has been tracking toward 1.40. fading that move but still 1.39. alix: similar in the u.s., bigger rise in yields. equities off the lows of the session. dollar pretty much neutral. 30 year breakeven rate pretty much flat. we get a 30 year tips auction later today. yields up one basis point. it was five, one hour ago. putting pressure on tech. the flat dollar is weighing on most commodities. copper up 2%. that is a china story. nine year high, guy. guy: back from the holidays with a bang in commodities markets.
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equities markets fading at the end of the session. the eu's recovery and resilience fund is operational. it is designed to hand out 312 billion euros over the next six years, and 300 billion euros in loans. spain, the biggest beneficiary. today in ecb accounts, the central bank already expressing concern about the slow pace of the package. joining from brussels, our european government reporter. victoria, we got so excited as of late in the u.s. checks going out the door, the biden administration wants to go big. this is more of a slow burn. reporter: it is a different kind of package.
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it is a centralized package. governments have their own fiscal response to the crisis. the way you hope this will work is it will be a tool to help economies, not just recover substantially from the pandemic but also be better prepared to deal with the green and digital transitions they want to do in the next few years, which is why you get a medium-term program and a short-term boost to deal with the aftermath of pandemic. alix: what do governments need to do to get the money? reporter: governments can submit their recovery plans. they have to outline the reforms they need, they plan to do in their economy and what they want to use the money for. at least one third of them has to be spent on green transition projects, 20% on digital projects and the rest has to report the economies.
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guy: one of the big concerns is countries like italy will not be equipped to spend this money. they have a bureaucracy that does not work well. they have a corruption problem. governments, like rome, in the past, have been bad at spending eu funds. why will this be different? reporter: absorption ratesreporter: in the past have been low because of bottlenecks. a couple things are different this time. one is the urgency of the situation and the gravity of the economic blow. also the government apparatus in countries is now centered around how to use these funds to protect the economy. there is much more concentration on absorbing funds and making the most of them and ensurin
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they help the economies recover as muc can -- as much as they can. alix: thank you. for more, mark downing, bluebay asset management cio. mark, how do you look at the recovery fund compared to the u.s.? it is like peanuts. how do you price that into growth? mark: first off, the u.s. has been assertive in terms of fiscal plans and moves toward inflation. it has to be applauded in terms of getting back into the economy. the european plans were positive. somewhat with the recent vaccine fiasco, sometimes the devil is in the detail when it comes to europe. sometimes bureaucracy and the need to administer programs will be its undoing. this is a positive step, the
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announcement of the package was welcomed at the time last year. it speaks to a theme of reflation on a global basis. a lot of countries across g7 are coming to the fiscal party. guy: sequencing will be important for investors. trying to work out what the gap in economic performance between the u.s. and europe is going to be. there's europe owing to be six months behind -- is europe going to be six months behind all the way along? mark: we are looking at growth 7% '21 having declined by 2.5% last year in the u.s. if you do the math, it puts the u.s. in a situation where it has closed its outlook cap by the later part of this year. eurozone, we don't think you are
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closing that outward gap until the end of 2022. a year behind in this. certainly, there is a sense in the u.s. there are further plans beyond the current covid package to spend on infrastructure and green technology. we could well see over a number of years a period where the u.s. is going for it on fiscal policy and the big question in europe is -- is there enough budget reform after the elections are out-of-the-way in september so that further fiscal initiatives can mirror those in the states? alix: pretty staggering assessment, considering eight months ago the narrative was europe would outperform. they had their handle on the virus battle. how do you express it in markets? mark: interesting. there was almost a moment in the
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fall, last year, europe was sitting, dealing with the virus, at the time it was out of control in the u.s. things have changed a lot over the course of the last six months. look at the progress the u.s. is making in terms of its vaccination program compared to the situation we find ourselves in from a european perspective. from a policy standpoint and a delivery standpoint, the u.s. is on the march. you see the sales retail numbers released in the u.s. yesterday. superstrong. you are putting money into people's hands and that money is being spent. you see a much more vibrant picture. from an investment point of view, as a fixed income investor, we are starting to see u.s. yields lift more rapidly than european yields.
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that, in a sense, is helping the dollar. dollar underperformance may be behind us. the other way investors are looking at this is looking at stocks. u.s. equities continue to outperform their global peers. guy: will european bonds outperform those in the u.s.? what will be the gravitational effect of u.s. yields going higher on say the bund market and is that a problem for the ecb? mark: we are seeing yields pulling. there is that gravitational pull, spot on. central banks will be wary of anything that occurs, a tightening in financial conditions of a premature nature. the relative performance of bond markets, frankly, we would not
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be surprised if in 2021, is a year where a number of bond benchmarks deliver negative returns, if you are fighting a trend of rising yields, clearly the duration on benchmarks will make it a challenging year for developed markets, fixed income strategies. we hope the opportunity is more and other absolute return strategies for other products elsewhere in the fixed income universe. otherwise, if it is choosing between bunds and treasuries, likewise pick the winner. alix: at some point it will hurt u.s. assets. what do you like? mark: from our perspective, short trades in u.s. we have been making money by
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shorting u.s. rates. in europe, we liked bonds and italy that have done well. draghi coming to the helm and italy, -- in italy, we think the market is taking a lot on and italy. we are looking at opportunities in emerging markets in economies where we could see fundamentals moving in the right direction. alix: mark, we will be sticking with you. guy: news on the banking front within the last few minutes. deutsche bank scaling back plans for its bonus pool after the ecb objected to proposed payout levels. the bank in italy planned to pay out 2 billion euros for staff performance in '20 but that has been tossed off after talks with
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regulators, according to people familiar. this is a fixed income side that has kept deutsche bank on the rails. more on that in a moment. big day for european bank reporting. credit suisse and barclays out today. our take on what you want to do with bank credit, next. this is bloomberg. ♪ (announcer) do you want to reduce stress? shed pounds? do you want to flatten your stomach? do all that in just 10 minutes a day with aerotrainer, the total body fitness solution that uses its revolutionary ergonomic design to help you maintain comfortable, correct form. that means better results in less time. and there are over 20 exercises to choose from. get gym results at home. no expensive machines, no expensive memberships. go to to get yours now. when you switch to xfinity mobile,
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>> we had a strong investment banking result in 2020. >> the diversified model we have of an investment bank and a strong consumer franchise showed its value in 2020.
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>> we feel good about growth opportunities on the investment banking side and the private banking side. >> we invested in our investment bank for the last five years. last year started to pay dividends and allowed us to be profitable every quarter. guy: barclays and credit suisse expressing optimism in investment banking operations despite credit suisse reporting loss. barclays had a strong 2020. however, the outlook from barclays, putting stock down circa 5%. mark, what do you think of the credit side for the banking story? people talking moving into bank credit, '81's etc.
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how much journey is there in that trade? mark: good point. we think there are good waves. bank credit is cheap. thanks have not been -- banks have not been behind the storm in this recession. banks are incredibly well-capitalized, very high ratios. consequently, when you look at the tier one instruments, you look at the triggers embedded. you would need to see a massive erosion in bank capital before you hit those triggers. one of the things that strikes us is there is a big discrepancy in terms of how tier one and tier two credit spreads are priced. we expect much more convergence. more gently, if you are investing in high-quality banks,
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the very junior part of the capital structure, you are investing in credits, which are relatively safe and also insecurities that don't have a lot of interest rate duration. one part of the credit market we really like. asset allocation, frankly, the credit market in '21. alix: do you delian a pie region? -- delian eightate by region -- delienate by region? mark: in spain and italy in particular, we have had our biggest overweight's. this is where we have seen the most value. in the context of the asset class, it is one of those technical asset classes, you have to look at the individual bonds, triggers of characteristics.
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it is not that straightforward all the time to just say you can buy anyone of these instruments. clearly you need to do your homework on individual securities. guy: more broadly, what is your take away from the european reporting season from a credit perspective? mark: pretty sanguine. 2020, a lot of companies, sectors have gone through challenges. we have been more focused in terms of the outlook during the course of the 12 months ahead. from a credit perspective, the thing we are struck by is the fact, even if you are looking in high-yield bonds, the fate rate is at a low level. we have an abundance of capital and ability to refinance. from credit worth, we feel pretty comfortable with the
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underlying fundamentals we are looking at in the market and sense underlying investors, specifically in europe are in a world where they expect yields to stay high for a long time and that change will pull investors into high-yielding securities where they can generate positive total returns. alix: how much of that has to do with the ecb and the bubble they are creating? mark: absolutely. a sense here and now today we have mixed supply in european government bonds where the ecb is buying more bonds than governments are issuing. perhaps no surprise to see it going tighter. you are really setting the price if you are the ecb right now. at some point in the future, as the economic outlook gets better, as covid is behind us, as we look to 2022, there will
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be a point where we are winding down programs. when that happens, we think some assets will need to see a new clearing price. where we are more wary is not changing those bonds the ecb are buying, where prices have been inflated artificially tight and favoring those that are off the ecb radar. they are not buying 81 or coco's. alix: such a pleasure to talk to you. would love to get you back. thank you very much. this is bloomberg. ♪
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guy: alix has talked a lot about
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commodities. her things. she is happy. [laughter] my turn. airplanes. i can hear you chuckling. good news bad news. solid fourth quarter. turning around fourth quarter. $5.9 million in cash flow. cautious guidance on the pace of recovery. the aviation sector's worst ever crisis. i managed to catch up on the outlook. >> when it comes to '21, at the beginning of the year, there is uncertainty and volatility in the market. we are under a difficult start of the year with more measures taken by governments against the backdrop of the pandemic. it is difficult to give guidance against such a backdrop. [indiscernible]
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-- in this global uncertainty. we are in a situation where the first half was more disappointing than what we thought. the second half was potentially better but then we don't know where the tipping point will be. we don't know what prudence means. [indiscernible] guy: what does your gut tell you? the risk to that guidance you gave today is upside or downside? >> we have said we want to at least deliver the same number of planes of last year -- at least $2 billion in cash flow. we could potentially do better. again, my previous point, it depends when we see things really getting better on the market. this is something we have no control on. we think the vaccination
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campaign moves us forward positively. very difficult to answer your question. we are doing as good as we can. that is reasonable at this point in time. guy: you mentioned delivery. flight deliveries, '21, flat and mentors stay the same or you need to pull back on the ramp up in production you are proposing. is that the correct way of looking at it? reporter: yes. >> we have a difference between the prediction rate for the first and second half of the year. we have indicated in january we want 43 in the fourth quarter and 45 in the last quarter of the. it suggests the second half of the year will be stronger.
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a risk of back loading if things go better. this level of uncertainty makes our lives quite difficult, therefore, the guidance, which we think we can achieve with a reasonable level of production, is slightly better if things are moving forward with vaccines around the summer. guy: the airbus ceo catching up with me. airbus shares lower. the car sector, one bright spot. when we come back, the details of europe today. this is bloomberg. ♪
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guy: 30 seconds until the end of regular trading in europe.
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volumes relatively light today. the session negative, down through the day. the asian session ended more softly, so did the chinese session. we have carried on the narrative in europe. the curve steepening in the u.s. the selloff was not worth bearing in mind. tech stocks under pressure. that has seen a flow back into europe. down 8/10 of 1%. let's talk the sector story. this is where the interest lies in terms of rotation. largely driven by corporate reporting, energy down at the bottom. you can see that in the london market today. bp and shell acting like a drug . barclays had good trading numbers. it is the outlook i think really
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has caused surprise. that is true of a number of names in europe today. the ftse down 1.5%. oil stocks down. banks adding to that. significantly strong pound on the cable rate. we faded. that will be a headwind for the ftse 100. the dax is opposite, driven today, operatively by the car sector. barely budged downside. that comes down to volkswagen. cac caught in the middle. we will talk about klm, speaking to the cfo. let's deal with the detail. volkswagen, story broken by bloomberg earlier suggesting just maybe the idea of this ipo of the porsche brand could be gaining traction.
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early discussion. suggested by analysts for quite some time. put porsche on the same multiples as ferrari, you get incredible valuation. you wonder whether or not it is time to crystallize that with equity markets where they are. volkswagen responding cautiously around 3%. downmarket today. barclays trading solid, dividend buyback story, something welcomed by investors. the outlook statement sent the stock lower. down 4.41%. air france, toward the end of the session dipping down. we had numbers out from klm early today. details, the intraday session sideways, a spike and fade into the close. the loss coming through at 407,
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better than anticipated. air france klm will operate 40% 2019 capacity in q1. what happens in q3 throughout the summer? liquidity position is pivotal. this is a company that is running on fumes for the balance sheet. let's talk to the air france klm cfo, joining us now. thank you very much indeed for taking the time to join. i want to talk about the numbers and what they mean for your liquidity position. what should investors be taking away from the figures you have been delivering today? >> it is difficult for the airline industry, a result of airbus.
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reduced capacity 50% for the year. more than 70% during the last quarter. your and probably -- you are in the biggest crisis of the industry since the beginning of civilization. travel restrictions. more difficulty having people on board. as a result, you see q4 and the full year. the full year, a bit less. a net result of -7. difficult year for air france klm but all the airline
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industry. guy: you said this morning on the call, it is days old, weeks -- not months, before you announce reeve capitalization. -- recapitalization. between the netherlands, france and the european commission in brussels, can you give me a sense of the size of the recapitalization you think you're going to need? can you speak about what that is going to mean. is that effective defect of nationalization of air france klm? -- de facto nationalization of air france caleb? -- klm? >> i don't think so. it is not the intention. what we are trying to do with the plant operation, yet to be decided, is in fact to try to do
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something, where, contrary to other companies, the only support has been loans. companies in the north of europe , equity, there were things specific in this report that we appreciate. then you have to go to the european commission to discuss, what are the targets? what is the plan? you need correction to bring to the plan. that is exactly where we are today. it will be solved one day.
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i'm confident it will come soon. guy: one of the things the commission is looking at is whether or not you will have to give up slots at key airports, and the same way lufthansa did. there are comparisons. i am wondering where you think those slots will have to be given up. is it all the main operating centers the commission is looking at? is it only south of paris? north of paris? where do you think you will have to cede slots in order to gain permission for this proposal to go forward? frederic: it is happening right now. you made a reference to the luke sounds a case -- lufthansa case. we look at what has been
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requested by the commission. we design proportionality. it can explain the level of competition and the intensity of competition. we are considering it now. we are trying to ask the commission for a fair and balanced approach, which has to be applied to air france. that is exactly where we are now. there's is a difference between the states and the commission. clearly, there was a question of proportionality and size. -- clearly, pure technical
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solutions, when we are looking for a fair proposal, taking into account everything that has to be taken into consideration. alix: how long past the pandemic or whatever normal means, will you continue to have to take aid from the government? frederic: it is a difficult question. as you know, for this industry severely hit by the crisis, hotels, airports, airplanes, restaurants, it is the timing. when do we expect recovery? clients being back? the revenue going up again? in order -- [indiscernible] -- very difficult to answer
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precisely to your question. to be frank, everyone in the industry was expecting recovery by the end of 2020. nobody was happy. the vaccine has provided some hope that we are close to the end of the crises. in fact, we have seen values between wave two and three, we are in a difficult situation. with the mass vaccination process ongoing, will have some positive effect. we are clearly expecting the beginning of a recovery by the middle of the year, 2021. alix: what i am trying to understand is what kind of
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revenue or flight do you demand, do you need to see, to stop getting money from the government? what is that? frederic: it is not really linked to the process of the recovery. we will have to address this in the coming months. we have indicated the possibility to seek the loan to be extended. after that, there is the market. we are in the situation, as with any other airlines, to come back to the market and not solve everything on the balance sheet. it would be appreciated and good for the company to see first the last report, but after that, take the steps to come back to the financial markets, which is
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a normal situation for any corporate. guy: how easy do you think that process will be? some analysts believe your stock will be heavily diluted as a result of you taking additional assistance. some suggest it could go as low as one euro. trading at 4.7 at the close in europe today. how hard are your current investors going to be hit by what is about to happen in order to save this airline? frederic: two considerations for any business. -- [indiscernible] clearly, in the case of the airlines, the idea would be to try to organize capital when we see a better perspective in terms of recovery.
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it is a specific sector. we consider that we bring value to the community and the world by promoting the exchange of culture. it is an industry. airlines are of economic value. we just have to wait for recovery to the market. the consideration about the possible collapse of the industry and the share price, is a good analysis. alix: thank you so much for your time. we appreciate it. we know it has been a long day. guy: let's talk about the closing numbers in europe.
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london market hit hard by factors, a stronger pound and barclays down. stocks like bp and shell down. oil adding weight to the downside. dax buoyed by solid numbers from volkswagen and daimler. porsche operation spinning out. alix: porsche. thanks a lot. 20 minutes time, the house financial services committee will begin its hearing on the gamestop case. we looked at why payment for order flow would be a hot topic at the hearing. ♪ reporter: day traders are piling
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into the stock market. major wall street firms are paying lots of money to handle their trades. it has outraged some who feel the relationship is to close. it is called payment for order flow. it is a key pillar of daytrading. the brokerage, like robin hood, will direct orders to a market maker. in return, those makers will pay the brokerage a small fee. those firms are making money for stocks and options and the sec has traditionally expected it as a way to transfer profits to brokerages. that helps the market maker amass greater volume of trade, ultimately bringing them more money. they add up. they reached $3 billion across the industry in 2020. schwab, robin hood and e*trade
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brought in the most, with schwab and td taking in $1.4 billion. citadel securities has paid more than $1 billion for order flows last year. some of these market makers are high-frequency traders that handle orders in fractions of a second. their involvement theoretically benefits customers. larry calculates it saved retail traders $3.7 billion last year. the practice has drawn a lot of criticism. elizabeth warren says there are troubling concerns about robin hood's relationship to wall street and has called for a clearer accounting of the relationship between the counterparties. still, payment for order flow has made it easier to provide services to new day traders and expand access to stock markets. it may be here to stay. it is likely to stay under scrutiny.
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guy: useful to get an idea of what is really happening here. compass point director of policy research, healthy markets association, director, joining us as well. tyler, let me start with you. what would be a useful outcome today? tyler: education. certainly, there will be investigations that happen with regulators and prosecutors for a long time. right now, this is about educating congress, who focused on some issues but we will see a lot of issues today. we will see payment for order flow, price improvement, best execution, broker-dealer capital rules, trade settlement cycles, shortselling disclosures,
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financial transaction lack of wisdom. there are a lot of issues. this will be the first time for many members of congress and the public at large to really dig in for a public discussion. hopefully today we will see more : a lot of these rules are designed for individuals and regular traders. it will be interesting to see how everyone argues for tackling problems when they actually help people. >> that is my main takeaway for the day. there are a slew of issues. tyler outline them. my sense is washington finds it difficult to act when there is a clear set of issues and a defined policy prescription. as tyler outlined, there are a ton of issues here. he went through the list. there are other issues being brought into the conversation which are peripheral at best,
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whether china's ownership of tencent, credit, stock buybacks. you can see how this conversation will be completed. at the end of the day, payment for order flow, outlined perfectly, i think is here to stay because it has lower cost for consumers and increased retail participation. in many ways, it is the worst option, except for all the others. [laughter] guy: is there a sense, just looking at that, as you say, this is a melting pot, throw everything in and figure out the best mixture. that is the one you ultimately present. with the current rules, when you talk to congress, you get a sense the current rules do not provide sufficient protection for consumers. isaac: i would point your viewers to a letter tyler helped with today that outlines all the
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rules and standards in potential need for more statutory authority. ultimately, two areas of focus once we get past the headlines. more focus on disclosures around payment for order flow, may be getting beyond what we have now, which is cents per share and there will be a serious conversation regarding transparency for shortselling, which can have unintended consequences depending on how it is done. alix: what about that? no one is arguing it is bad. when you are shorting more than the flow, that is a bizarre problem. do you expect more transparency? more rules? : tyler; i expect a lot of thinking about it. this is not the first time. following the financial crisis, dodd-frank directed the sec to dig into more disclosures and security lending practices. the sec didn't really.
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more than a decade later, i expect the sec and congress to thinking -- should big holders have to disclose short positions on top of disclosing long positions? i think we will see things like that. will we see better disclosures to regulators real-time? probably not to the public. picking on something isaac said, on order flow, i think there will be a significant push to talk about payments that are received by agents as opposed to principles. we have a basic conflict. orders are routed, is your broker looking out for the best price for you or the one that makes them the most money? that is not something you can disclose away. that is an existing rule. that is something where i think we will see a lot of focus as payment for order flow comes
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under attention. that, to me, is the number one issue. the number two issue is game if occasion -- gamification. guy: can i ask you about clearing and margins and the issues surrounding that? is it the best solution if you were to bring it in and make clearing instantaneous? what would be the implication? the recipe we have now, is it the right one? it may not be perfect but is it the best we can achieve? >> gamestop closed. it has been years. the longer the time between a trade happening and someone showing up with cash or securities, the more things can go wrong. you will see bales to deliver. shortening that settlement cycle has been a priority for years. i think we will see people try
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to push for this. we just went to t+2 couple years ago. if i were to come up with a distraction and robin hood was going to take away with the idea, we were unable to meet a margin call and had to raise $3.4 billion over a short time and draw down lines of credit -- i think i might focus on saying let's do real-time payments. this is where i think this is focused. it is an issue for regulators. i think this is a sideshow. do i think it will happen? yes. it won't be the reason. alix: great stuff. good to see you. thank you. for more on what this means for markets, ben, you specialize in volatility and derivatives. what is in the market? what is retail doing? ben: great to see you.
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thank you for having me. one of the things we are seeing is retail getting involved in complicated volatility exchange traded notes linked to the complex. that has been a fun story for a while. 2017-18, retail was heavily shorting those products and lost money. now we are seeing the opposite. there is a big pile into ubsy, the mixed exchange trade of notes, reminiscent of 2011, which is trying to bet on a big spike in volatility. guy: you are making that comparison. is it justified? do you think people doing it now have a better understanding of the products they are dealing with? products are sophisticated but with a short timeframe. do you think we have a more sophisticated investor here?
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ben: on average, probably not much. these are complex products. leveraged objects on exchange traded notes linked to futures. alix: [laughter] ben: i would not focus on it in private trading. complex issues like what is the cost of carrying those positions when you have future term structures that are steep versus inverted. i am sure there are some folks who know what they are doing. alix: 45 seconds left. your take on what retail investors will be watching from the hearing? what do they want? ben: there is a lot of confusion around the issue. keith is a folk hero among the retail community. they will be looking to see how he represents himself and how he represents the questions being asked.
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they feel he is being unfairly targeted for being a champion of the people, to some extent. guy: certainly worthy of the popcorn. alix: that is the take away from today. popcorn. guy: popcorn and bingo. whether you get productive things out of these hearings, i don't know but it is entertaining to pay attention to what is not being said. alix: yolo. guy: i wonder where the focus will go. great coverage coming up. that will wrap it. coverage coming up, the gamestop hearing coverage continues. taking that hearing live in a few minutes. we are off to bloomberg radio. this is bloomberg. ♪
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david: from bloomberg world headquarters in new york to our tv and radio on details -- audiences worldwide, welcome to balance of power. the house financial services committee is about to begin its hearing into the frenzy around gamestop and other so-called meme stocks a couple weeks ago. for a preview, we turn to kevin cirilli. kevin, set the stage for us. kevin: we are moments away from maxine waters convening this hearing on gamestop, on robinhood. it is drawing a lot of attention. three things to watch for. first, does gamestop -- do gamestop and robinhood plan for the long-term and try to have a seat at the table of the regulatory onslaught of questions they are facing after the political theater of today? will some republicans align with democrats, like congresswoman
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