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SWFI First Read, October 6, 2016

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Credit: NASA Earth Science Office - Hurricane Matthew - Oct 6, 2016

Credit: NASA Earth Science Office – Hurricane Matthew – Oct 6, 2016

NRK Reports: 225 Billion NOK – Norwegian Government Spend from SWF in 2017

Public broadcaster NRK reported that the Norwegian government is looking to raise its spending from the nation’s wealth fund to 225 billion NOK (US$ 28.1 billion) in 2017.

IMF: US$ 152 Trillion and Growing

The Washington D.C.-based International Monetary Fund (IMF) has announced that the world debt level has skyrocketed to 225% of global gross domestic product (GDP). IMF has calculated that gross debt in the non-financial sector amounted to US$ 152 trillion in 2015 and its growing. The debt amount counts debt held by governments, non-financial firms and household. Most of that debt is private debt. In 2002, the amount of debt was 200% of global gross domestic product (GDP).

The IMF is concerned about a negative feedback loop.

Japan’s GPIF Forms New Stewardship & ESG Group

On October 1, 2016, Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF) formed a new division called Stewardship & ESG in its public markets investment department. This division was formerly known as the Stewardship Enhancement Group which was formed in March 2016. Hiroshi Komori is leading the Stewardship & ESG group. GPIF accepted Japan’s Stewardship Code in May 2014.

Tradeweb Experiences Growth in U.S. ETF Trading Volume

New York-based Tradeweb Markets LLC, which runs fixed income, derivatives and exchange-traded fund (ETF) marketplaces, continues to experience growth on its platform. Tradeweb announced that more than US$ 12 billion notional volume has traded year-to-date on its electronic request for quote (RFQ) platform for U.S. ETFs since launching in the first quarter of 2016. On another note, Deutsche Bank AG, UBS Group AG and Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc are looking to possibly sell their minority ownership stakes in Tradeweb. Thomson Reuters Corporation is the majority owner of Tradeweb.

NIRP Consequences: Japanese Banks Look at U.S. Munis

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Saudi Arabia Sends Second Installment of Aid to Pakistan

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On December 14, 2018, Pakistan received its second installment of the US$ 3 billion in aid promised from Saudi Arabia on October 23, 2018. The US$ 1 billion given on December 14th boosted the foreign reserves of the State Bank of Pakistan, which went from US$ 7.2 billion to US$ 8.2 billion. The first installment was given on November 23, 2018. The last installment is expected to occur in January 2019.

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White House Nominates Heath Tarbert for CFTC Chairman

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The White House announced Heath P. Tarbert will be nominated to serve as Commissioner and Chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC). Tarbert currently serves as Assistant Secretary for International Markets at the U.S. Treasury Department. Before joining the U.S. Treasury, Tarbert was a Partner at law firm Allen & Overy. Tarbert was confirmed by the U.S. Senate for his current Treasury post at 87 (yes) to 8 (no).

Upon Senate confirmation, Tarbert’s CFTC term would start on April 14, 2019 and last for five years. Tarbert is taking over from J. Christopher Giancarlo whose term ends in April 2019. Tarbert will need a U.S. Senate confirmation to take the head CFTC post.

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KIA Could Sell Stake in North Sea Energy Business

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The Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA), through its unit Wren House Investment Management, is nearing a deal to sell a 40% stake in its North Sea energy business to JPMorgan Asset Management. In July 2018, KIA closed on a deal to acquire oil and gas pipeline firm North Sea Midstream Partners from ArcLight Capital.

More details to follow –

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