– According to Reuters (paywall), SoftBank Group’s Arm is in talks with some of its biggest customers and end-users about bringing on one or more anchor investors in the chip designer’s IPO, two sources familiar with the matter said. Arm is talking to at least 10 companies, including Intel, Alphabet, Apple, Microsoft, TSMC and Samsung Electronics about their potential participation in the IPO, one of the sources said.
– Elon Musk hit out at investment data firm S&P Global after it gave Tesla a lower ESG score than Philip Morris International, the maker of Marlboro cigarettes, the Daily Mail reported. The Tesla CEO made the comments on Twitter earlier this week, writing: ‘Why ESG is the devil...’ and sharing an article that slammed the rating practice that awards companies for employing ‘woke inclusion tsars’. Tesla has an overall low score of 37 out of 100, compared with Philip Morris International, which has a score of 84.
– According to the Financial Times (paywall), global fund managers are rushing to meet client demand for new Asian investment products that exclude China, as investor appetite for the region’s largest economy is hit by slowing growth and mounting geopolitical risk. Fund managers said requests for ‘ex-China’ products included the possibility of ‘Asian allies’ funds that would invest in US-friendly markets and provide clear insulation from Beijing-related geopolitical risk in the region. The widespread adoption of such investing would mark one of the biggest structural shifts for Asia-Pacific markets since the advent of ‘Asia ex-Japan’ portfolios roughly three decades ago, according to asset managers. They said demand had been stoked by worsening US-China tensions and a rally for the rest of the region that had left its biggest market behind.
– In crypto news, investors pulled $62 mn from crypto funds last week, bringing the seven-week drawdown to $329 mn, Decrypt reported. Assets under management fell by 1 percent in the last week. Withdrawals were driven by an uptick in investors cashing in on short positions after prices rose by 56 percent across different cryptocurrencies in the last year, according to Coinshares.
– In more tech news, Bloomberg (paywall) said Wall Street’s main regulator is moving to introduce new rules for brokerages using artificial intelligence to interact with clients. The SEC said Tuesday that a long-contemplated plan to rein in conflicts of interest associated with the technology could be introduced as soon as October. The proposal would also apply to predictive data analytics and machine learning.
– A leading US tech investment firm that counts Facebook and Twitter among its successful bets backed the UK’s approach to crypto regulation as it announced plans to open a London office that will be its first outside the US, The Guardian reported. California-based Andreessen Horowitz said Britain was on ‘the right path to becoming a leader in crypto regulation.’ The venture capital firm’s new office will open later this year and will be dedicated to investing in crypto and tech start-ups in the UK and Europe. The move comes amid a crackdown on the cryptocurrency industry in the US, where the financial watchdog is suing the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, Binance, in a legal complaint that accuses the company and its founder, Changpeng Zhao, of ‘placing investors’ assets at significant risk’.