4 Ways that the Presidential Election Will Affect Your Portfolio

4 Ways that the Presidential Election Will Affect Your Portfolio
By Anthony Jerdine| November  8, 2016 — 06:41 AM EST

The 2016 U.S. presidential election will impact your portfolio in at least four ways. Review these catalysts and take action now to reduce or avoid losses that can be predicted through current campaign rhetoric. It’s also a good time to add exposure to securities and sectors that may benefit from policy changes that occur after this quadrennial event.

The election will impact markets before and after the November vote, with the campaign trail exposing individual sectors to buying or selling pressure while the final result produces a longer lasting effect on a smaller group of securities. Price action in both groups should track poll numbers, allowing observant investors to make on-the-fly adjustments to portfolios.
Ironically, Wall Street is unlikely to become a major campaign issue, despite its participation in the 2008 economic collapse. A 7-year bull market and huge fines have impacted the political landscape, with neither party willing to challenge major investment banks, beyond an occasional reference or a slap on the wrist. Expect a cynical response to any rhetoric that promises stringent financial regulations in a new administration.

Health Care
The U.S. presidential election will impact health care stocks, with Republican front runners looking to repeal or limit the Affordable Care Act a.k.a. Obamacare. Democratic candidates may add to the negative impact, as we saw in 2015 when frontrunner, Hillary Clinton criticized the high cost of prescriptions, setting off a biotech and pharmaceutical decline that’s continued into 2016.

The U.S. healthcare industry has undergone a dramatic consolidation in recent years, highlighted by the recently approved merger between Anthem (ANTM) and Cigna (CI). Meanwhile, Aetna (AET) has announced it will buy Humana (HUM), in a transaction that’s still awaiting regulatory approval. These mergers will improve profitability, regardless of political activities in coming years, suggesting that selloffs generated by tough talk on Obamacare should be viewed as buying opportunities.

Energy Industry
Barrack Obama’s election underpinned alternative energy sources while placing a target on the backs of the coal and other fossil fuel industries. Republicans will seek to ease the Clean Air Act and other environmental restrictions, breathing life back into these groups. Solar may have sidestepped campaign partisanship with a late 2015 agreement to continue subsidies past a 2017 expiration date but expect the group to get sold if Republicans take back the White House.

Collapsing crude oil prices will have an indirect impact on the campaign trail because both candidates understand that lower pump prices put money back into the hands of consumers. However, energy companies traditionally back Republican candidates, seeking to reduce regulations that limit profitability, and it’s expected they’ll be active contributors in the 2016 race.

The industry has been badly hurt by falling prices and will seek accommodation to underpin energy markets. The lifting of the crude oil export ban completed a major agenda item, but its political and economic importance has dropped significantly because WTI crude on this side of the Atlantic is now priced identically to Brent crude on the other side, making exports unlikely, especially during a record supply glut.

Defense Stocks
The November 2015 Paris attacks highlight the global impact of terrorist organizations and current geopolitical concerns. “Boots on the ground” has become a notable theme heading into the 2016 campaign season, raising odds the USA will intervene to a greater degree in Middle East military operations in coming years.

Defense stocks took off in strong rallies after Paris and continued to lead the market in early 2016. Polls that favor Republican candidates should underpin this rally, but it’s likely that Democrats will also talk tough on war and defense, given the threat of ISIS, China’s South China Sea ambitions and the always unpredictable North Korea.

Market Cycles
In addition to broad themes in line with Democratic and Republican policy formation, economic cycles also tend to peak heading into or during an election year, often posting significant tops or bottoms that set the stage for new bull or bear markets. We saw that happen in 2000 and 2008, with both tops giving way to significant declines.

Historical data also reveals significant market performance variations, depending on which party takes the White House. The DJ Industrial Average performed significantly better between 1900 and 2012 and better under Democratic administrations than Republican administrations. The average monthly return under Democrats during this period was 0.73% versus 0.38% for Republicans. Also, Democrats posted an average yearly return of 15.31% vs. 5.47% for the GOP.

The Bottom Line
Review portfolios in early 2016, looking to mitigate losses due to the presidential election. Also, take the time to add new exposures that could benefit, depending on the outcome. Healthcare, pharmaceutical, energy and defense stocks could be impacted during the year, as campaign statements translate into buying and selling pressure. Health care and defense should exit the presidential election year as winners, regardless of which side takes the White House.

 

Top 5 Forex Questions Answered

1, What’s different about the forex market?

Currency trading does not take place on a regulated exchange, nor does a governing body control it. Instead, members trade based on credit agreements, essentially relying on nothing more than a metaphorical handshake. And because FX participants must compete and cooperate with each other, self-regulation provides effective control.

2, What is a pip?

Pip stands for Percentage In Point. FX prices are quoted to the fourth decimal point. For example, if a bar of soap cost $1.20, it would be quoted in the FX market at 1.2000. One pip change would be 1.2001. A pip is the smallest increment in FX trading.

3, What are you really selling or buying in the currency market?

Nothing. The FX market is purely speculative, meaning all trades exist as computer entries. Profits and losses are calculated in dollars and recorded on the trader’s account.

4, Which currencies are traded in the forex markets?

The four major currency pairs are the euro/U.S dollar, the dollar/Japanese yen, the British pound/dollar, and the dollar/Swiss franc. The three major commodity pairs are the Australian dollar/U.S. dollar, the U.S. dollar/Canadian dollar, and New Zealand dollar/U.S. dollar.

5, What is a currency carry trade?

A trader buys one currency that has a high interest rate with another currency that has a lower interest rate. It’s the most popular trade on the currency market, but its declines can be rapid and severe when a majority of speculators decide a carry trade has poor potential and they try all at once to exit their positions.

 

The Six Best Hours to Trade the Euro

The euro (EUR) ranks second behind the U.S. dollar (USD) in terms of global liquidity, trailed by the Japanese yen (JPY) and British pound (GBP). Forex traders speculate on EUR strength and weakness through currency pairs that establish comparative value in real-time. Although brokers offer dozens of related crosses, most clients focus their attention on the six most popular pairs:

U.S. dollar (USD) – EUR/USD
Swiss franc (CHF) – EUR/CHF
Japanese yen (JPY) – EUR//JPY
British pound (GBP) – EUR/GBP
Australian dollar (AUD) – EUR/AUD
Canadian dollar (CAD) – EUR/CAD
EUR trades continuously from Sunday evening to Friday afternoon in the United States, offering significant opportunities for profit. However, volume and volatility can fluctuate greatly in each 24-hour cycle, with bid/ask spreads in the less popular pairs widening during quiet periods and narrowing during active periods. While the ability to open and close positions at any time marks a key benefit of forex, the majority of trading strategies unfold during active periods.
Many forex traders focus their full attention on the EUR/USD cross, the most popular and liquid currency market in the world. The cross maintains a tight spread throughout the 24-hour cycle, while multiple intraday catalysts ensure that price actions will set up tradable trends in both directions and along all time frames. Long- and short-term swings also work extremely well with classic range-bound strategies, including swing trading and trading channels.

Euro Price Catalysts
The best time to trade the euro coincides with the release of economic data, as well as the open hours at equity, options and futures exchanges. Planning ahead for these data releases requires two-sided research because local (eurozone) catalysts can move popular pairs with the same intensity as catalysts in each of the cross venues. Moreover, U.S. economic data can have the greatest impact on all currencies, due to the overriding importance of the EUR/USD pair.

In addition, EUR crosses are vulnerable to economic and political macro events that trigger highly correlated price actions across equities, currencies and bond markets around the world. China’s devaluation of the yuan in August 2015 offers a perfect illustration. Even natural disasters have the power to generate this type of coordinated response, as evidenced by the 2011 Japanese tsunami.

Economic Releases
Eurozone monthly economic data is generally released at 2 a.m. Eastern Time (ET) in the United States. The time segment from 30 to 60 minutes prior to these releases and one to three hours afterwards highlights an enormously popular period to trade EUR pairs because the news will impact at least three of the five most popular crosses. It also overlaps the run-up into the U.S. trading day, drawing in significant volume from both sides of the Atlantic.

U.S. economic releases tend to be released between 8:30 a.m. and 10 a.m. ET and generate extraordinary EUR trading volume as well, with high odds for strongly trending price movement in the most popular pairs. Japanese data releases get less attention because they tend to come out at 4:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. ET, when the eurozone is in the middle of their sleep cycle. Even so, trading volume with the EUR/JPY and EUR/USD pairs can spike sharply around these time zones.

Euro and Equity Exchange Hours
The schedules for many EUR traders roughly follow exchange hours, centering their activity when the Frankfurt and New York equity markets and Chicago futures and options markets are open for business. This localization generates an increase in trading volume around midnight on the U.S. East Coast, continuing through the night and into the American lunch hour, when forex trading activity can drop sharply.

However, central bank agendas shift this activity cycle, with forex traders around the world staying at their desks when the Federal Reserve (FOMC) is scheduled to release a 2 p.m. ET interest rate decision or the minutes of the prior meeting. The Bank of England (BOE) issues its rate decisions at 7 a.m. ET, while the European Central Bank (ECB) follows at 7:45 a.m. ET, with both releases taking place in the center of high volume EUR activity.

The Bottom Line
Six popular currency pairs offer euro traders a wide variety of short- and long-term opportunities. The best times to trade these instruments coincide with key economic releases at 1:30 a.m., 2 a.m., 8:30 a.m. and 10 a.m. U.S. Eastern Time, as well as between midnight and noon, when European and American exchanges keep all cross markets active and liquid.

 

CPFP

DEFINITION of ‘Commercial Paper Funding Program – CPFP’
A program instituted in October of 2008 that created the Commercial Paper Funding Facility (CPFF). The Commercial Paper Funding Program (CPFP) was designed to increase the liquidity of the commercial paper market by providing funding to issuers. The program specifically provided a backup measure of liquidity for commercial paper issuers via a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV).

‘Commercial Paper Funding Program – CPFP’
The SPVs were financed directly by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and were used to purchase three-month commercial paper, both secured and unsecured. This financing was then to be secured by the assets placed into the SPVs and also by the fees paid by issuers of unsecured paper. The Treasury department felt that the program was required in order to prevent further substantial disruption of the financial markets.

 

Forex Trading The Martingale Way

Forex Trading The Martingale Way
Would you be interested in a trading strategy that is practically 100% profitable? Most traders will probably reply with a resounding, “Yes!” Amazingly, such a strategy does exist and dates all the way back to the 18th century. This strategy is based on probability theory, and if your pockets are deep enough, it has a near-100% success rate.

Known in the trading world as the martingale, this strategy was most commonly practiced in the gambling halls of Las Vegas casinos. It is the main reason why casinos now have betting minimums and maximums, and why the roulette wheel has two green markers (0 and 00) in addition to the odd or even bets. The problem with this strategy is that to achieve 100% profitability, you need to have very deep pockets; in some cases, they must be infinitely deep.
No one has infinite wealth, but with a theory that relies on mean reversion, one missed trade can bankrupt an entire account. Also, the amount risked on the trade is far greater than the potential gain. Despite these drawbacks, there are ways to improve the martingale strategy. In this article, we’ll explore the ways you can improve your chances of succeeding at this very high-risk and difficult strategy.

What is the Martingale Strategy?
Popularized in the 18th century, the martingale was introduced by the French mathematician Paul Pierre Levy. The martingale was originally a type of betting style based on the premise of “doubling down.” A lot of the work done on the martingale was done by an American mathematician named Joseph Leo Doob, who sought to disprove the possibility of a 100% profitable betting strategy.

The system’s mechanics involve an initial bet; however, each time the bet becomes a loser, the wager is doubled such that, given enough time, one winning trade will make up all of the previous losses. The 0 and 00 on the roulette wheel were introduced to break the martingale’s mechanics by giving the game more than two possible outcomes other than the odd versus even, or red versus black. This made the long-run profit expectancy of using the martingale in roulette negative, and thus destroyed any incentive for using it.

To understand the basics behind the martingale strategy, let’s look at a simple example. Suppose we had a coin and engaged in a betting game of either heads or tails with a starting wager of $1. There is an equal probability that the coin will land on heads or tails, and each flip is independent, meaning that the previous flip does not impact the outcome of the next flip. As long as you stick with the same directional view each time, you would eventually, given an infinite amount of money, see the coin land on heads and regain all of your losses, plus $1. The strategy is based on the premise that only one trade is needed to turn your account around.

Examples

Your Bet Wager Flip Results Profit/Loss Account Equity
Heads $ 1 Heads $ 1 $11
Heads $ 1 Tails $ (1) $10
Heads $ 2 Tails $ (2) $8
Heads $ 4 Heads $ 4 $12
Assume that you have $10 to wager, starting with a first wager of $1. You bet on heads, the coin flips that way and you win $1, bringing your equity up to $11. Each time you are successful, you continue to bet the same $1 until you lose. The next flip is a loser, and you bring your account equity back to $10. On the next bet, you wager $2 hoping that if the coin lands on heads, you will recoup your previous losses and bring your net profit and loss to zero. Unfortunately, it lands on tails again and you lose another $2, bringing your total equity down to $8. So, according to martingale strategy, on the next bet you wager double the prior amount to $4. Thankfully, you hit a winner and gain $4, bringing your total equity back up to $12. As you can see, all you needed was one winner to get back all of your previous losses.

However, let’s consider what happens when you hit a losing streak:

Your Bet Wager Flip Results Profit/Loss Account Equity
Heads $1 Tails $ (1) $9
Heads $2 Tails $ (2) $7
Heads $4 Tails $ (4) $3
Heads $3 Tails $ (3) ZERO
Once again, you have $10 to wager, with a starting bet of $1. In this scenario, you immediately lose on the first bet and bring your balance down to $9. You double your bet on the next wager, lose again and end up with $7. On the third bet, your wager is up to $4 and your losing streak continues, bringing you down to $3. You do not have enough money to double down, and the best you can do is bet it all. If you lose, you are down to zero and even if you win, you are still far from your initial $10 starting capital.

Trading Application
You may think that the long string of losses, such as in the above example, would represent unusually bad luck. But when you trade currencies, they tend to trend, and trends can last a very long time. The key with martingale, when applied to trading, is that by “doubling down” you essentially lower your average entry price. In the example below, at two lots, you need the EUR/USD to rally from 1.263 to 1.264 to break even. As the price moves lower and you add four lots, you only need it to rally to 1.2625 instead of 1.264 to break even. The more lots you add, the lower your average entry price. Even though you may lose 100 pips on the first lot of the EUR/USD if the price hits 1.255, you only need the currency pair to rally to 1.2569 to break even on your entire holdings.

This is also a clear example of why deep pockets are needed. If you only have $5,000 to trade, you would be bankrupt before you were even able to see the EUR/USD reach 1.255. The currency may eventually turn, but with the martingale strategy, there are many cases when you may not have enough money to keep you in the market long enough to see that end.

EUR/USD Lots Average or Break-Even Price Accumulated Loss Break-Even Move
1.2650 1 1.265 $0 0 pips
1.2630 2 1.264 -$200 +10 pips
1.2610 4 1.2625 -$600 +15 pips
1.2590 8 1.2605 -$1,400 +17 pips
1.2570 16 1.2588 -$3,000 +18 pips
1.2550 32 1.2569 -$6,200 +19 pips
Why Martingale Works Better with FX
One of the reasons the martingale strategy is so popular in the currency market is because, unlike stocks, currencies rarely drop to zero. Although companies easily can go bankrupt, countries cannot. There will be times when a currency is devalued, but even in cases of a sharp slide, the currency’s value never reaches zero. It’s not impossible, but what it would take for this to happen is too scary to even consider.

The FX market also offers one unique advantage that makes it more attractive for traders who have the capital to follow the martingale strategy: The ability to earn interest allows traders to offset a portion of their losses with interest income. This means that an astute martingale trader may want to only trade the strategy on currency pairs in the direction of positive carry. In other words, he or she would buy a currency with a high interest rate and earn that interest while, at the same time, selling a currency with a low interest rate. With a large number of lots, interest income can be very substantial and could work to reduce your average entry price.

The Bottom Line
As attractive as the martingale strategy may sound to some traders, we emphasize that grave caution is needed for those who attempt to practice this trading style. The main problem with this strategy is that often, seemingly sure-fire trades may blow up your account before you can turn a profit or even recoup your losses. In the end, traders must question whether they are willing to lose most of their account equity on a single trade. Given that they must do this to average much smaller profits, many feel that the martingale trading strategy is entirely too risky for their tastes.

High risk, high reward✔️

Hamptons Effect

Hamptons Effect

What is the ‘Hamptons Effect’
The Hamptons Effect refers to a dip in trading prior to the Labor Day weekend followed by increased trading volume as traders and investors return from the long weekend. The term implies that many of the large scale traders on Wall Street spend the last days of summer in Hamptons, a traditional summer destination for the wealthy of New York City. The increased volume of the Hamptons Effect can be positive in the form of a rally as portfolio managers place trades to firm up overall returns going into the end of the year or it can be on the negative side if those same portfolio managers decide to take profits rather than opening or adding to positions. The Hamptons Effect is a calendar effect based on a combination of statistical analysis and anecdotal evidence.

BREAKING DOWN ‘Hamptons Effect’
The statistical case for the Hamptons Effect is stronger for some sectors compared to others. On a market-wide measure like the S&P 500, the Hamptons Effect is characterized by slightly higher volatility with a small positive effect depending on the time period used. That said, it is possible to drill down to the sector level and create the case for a certain stock profile being favored following the long weekend. For example, the case can be made that defensive stocks that are consistent performers like food and utilities are favored going into the end of the year, and thus benefit from the Hamptons Effect.

Trading Opportunities
As with any market effect, finding a pattern and reliably profiting from it are two different things. Analyzing a huge set of data will almost always reveal interesting trends and patterns as you shift the parameters. The Hamptons Effect can certainly be mined out of market data when you play with the time period and the types of stocks. The question is whether the effect is large enough to create a true performance advantage after fees, taxes, spreads, and so on. For an individual investor, the answer is often no when it comes to these market anomalies. The Hamptons Effect and other similar anomalies that can be mined in data are interesting tidbits, but their value as an investment strategy is very small for your average investor. Even if a market effect appears consistent, it can quickly break down as traders and institutional investors implement strategies to take advantage of the arbitrage opportunity.

 

Endowment

Endowment

What is an ‘Endowment’
An endowment is a financial asset, in the form of a donation made to a non-profit group, institution or individual consisting of investment funds or other property that may or may not have a stated purpose at the bequest of the donor. Most endowments are designed to keep the principal amount intact while using the investment income from dividends for charitable efforts.
Endowments provide ongoing benefits for those that receive them by earning a market rate of interest while keeping the core endowment principal intact to fund future years of scholarships or whatever efforts the donor seeks to fund. In some cases, a certain percentage of the assets are allowed to be used each year, so the amount pulled out of the endowment could be a combination of interest income and principal. The ratio of principal to income would change year to year based on prevailing market rates. Endowments can be set up for purposes ranging from higher education to the wellbeing of pets, and can include terms like swimming tests and ice-cream made available at all times.

Types of Endowments
There are four different types of endowments; unrestricted, term, quasi, and restricted.

Term endowments usually stipulate that only after a period of time or a certain event can the principal be expended.
Unrestricted endowments assets that can be spent, saved, invested, and distributed at the discretion of the institution receiving the gift.
A quasi-endowment is a donation by an individual or institution who give the gift with the intent of having that fund serve a specific purpose. The principal is typically retained while the earnings are expended or distributed per specifications of the donor. These endowments are usually started by the institutions that benefit from them via internal transfers or by using unrestricted endowments already given to the intuition.
Restricted Endowments have their principal held in perpetuity, while the earnings from the earnings from the invested assets are expended per the donor’s specification.
Except in a few circumstances, the terms of these endowments cannot be violated. If an institution is near bankruptcy or has declared it, but it still has assets in endowments, a court can issue a doctrine of cy-près so the institution can use those assets to move them to better financial health while using the endowment in a way that reflects the wishes of the donor as closely as possible.

Use of Endowments in Universities and Colleges
Endowments are such an integral part of Western academic institutions that a fair measure of a college or university’s wellbeing can be the size of their endowment. They provide colleges and universities with the ability to fund their operating costs with sources other than tuition, and ensure a level of stability by using them as a potential ‘rainy-day-fund’.

Endowments set up by these institutions or given as gifts by donors have multiple uses. They can ensure the financial health of specific departments, they can establish professorships, and they be awarded to students in the form of scholarships or fellowships as awards for merit or as assistance to students from a background of economic hardship.

‘Chair positions’, or ‘endowed professorships’ are paid with the revenue of an endowment, and free up capital with which institutions can use to hire more faculty, increasing professor to student ratios. These chair positions are considered prestigious and are reserved for senior faculty.Endowments can also be established for specific disciplines, departments, or programs within universities. Smith College, for instance, has an endowment specifically for their botanical gardens, and Harvard has upwards of 10,000 separate endowments.

Management of Endowments
The goal of any group given the task of managing a university’s endowments is to sustainably grow the funds by reinvestment of the endowment’s earnings while also contributing to the operating cost of the institution and it’s goals. Older educational institutions like the Ivy League schools in the United States have been successful in building extremely robust funds in party because of continued donation from wealthy graduates and well managed funds. Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Stanford, and MIT have, respectively, $32 Billion, $20 billion, $18.7 billion, $18.6 billion, and $10 billion in their endowments.

Management of an endowment is a discipline unto itself. An outline of considerations made by a management team include; setting objectives, developing a payout policy, building an asset allocation policy, selecting managers, managing risks systematically, cutting costs, and defining responsibilities.

Criticism and Student Activism
Harvard and other elite higher educational institutions have come under criticism for the size of their endowment. Critics have questioned the utility of large, multi-billion dollar endowments, likening it to hoarding, especially as tuition costs began rising at the end of the 20th century. Large endowments had been though of as rainy day funds for educational institutions, but during the 2008 recession endowments did the opposite, instead many of them cut the payouts on endowments. A study published in the American Economic Review looked closely at the incentives behind this behavior, found that there has been a trend of overemphasis on the health of an endowment instead of that of the institution as a whole by endowment managers.

It’s not unusual for student activists to look with a critical eye at where their colleges and universities invest their endowment. In 1977 Hampshire College divested from South Africa in protest to apartheid, a move that a large number of educational institutions in the United States followed soon after. Advocating for divestment from industries and countries students find morally compromised is still a common tactic used by student activists.

Private Non-Operating Foundations and Federally Required Payout
Managers of endowments have to deal with the push and pull of interests to make use of assets to forward their causes, or to sustainably grow their respective foundation, institution, or university. Philanthropies, or more specifically private non-operating foundations, a category that includes the majority of grant-making foundations, are required by federal law to pay out 5% of their investment assets on their endowment every year for charitable purposes.

Private operating foundations must pay substantially all (85% or more) of it’s investment income, while community foundations have no requirement.

History
The oldest endowments still active today were established by both Henry the VIII and his relatives. His grandmother, Countess of Richmond established endowed chairs in divinity at both Oxford and Cambridge, while King Henry the VIII established professorships in a variety of disciplines at both Oxford and Cambridge.

Marcus Aurelius established the first recorded endowment for the major schools of philosophy in Athens circa 176 AD.

 

BUSINESS ADVENTURES

There are reasons that some people make a lot more money than others.

Some of the reasons are fair. And some are unfair.

I choose to focus on things under my control.

How you think is under your control.

I was reading Bill Gates favorite book, “Business Adventures” during lunch.
•Bill Gates favorite book during lunch

I can sum up much of the book in a few points:

1. The Opposite Is Often Better: The average human is usually being tricked into doing the wrong thing with their money. When people are buying you should probably be selling. And when they are selling you should probably be buying from them.

2. Appearances Are Often Misleading: “The expectation of an event creates a much deeper impression … than the event itself.”

3. The Only Thing Predictable Is Unpredicability: J. P. Morgan wa asked by a newbie what J.P Morgan predicted the stockmarket was going to do. ‘It will fluctuate,’ replied Morgan dryly.

4. Things Will Go Up And Then Down For A Long Time: “We may see another speculative buildup followed by another crash, and so on until God makes people less greedy.”

Knowledge is what create’s wealth. Books like this can change your life.

Equidate

Start-Ups: a New Market for Private Companies
By Anthony Jerdine | July 26, 2016 — 8:21 AM EDT

Transparency has always been an obstacle in terms of bringing investors and private companies together. By law, any company that is privately held has no obligation to make their finances open to the general public.

New Transparency
That is all about to change, thanks to Equidate, a platform for trading shares of privately held companies. The San Francisco company announced yesterday that they had launched a new online platform that would help bring more transparency to the private market.
Founded in 2013, Equidate makes it possible for employees of private companies to convert their illiquid shares into cash. On the flip side, they allow accredited investors to get in on companies during a start-up’s high growth time period.

According to the New York Times Equidate currently has approximately $750 million worth of shares listed for sale on their marketplace.

Thousands of Companies
This new platform will give the public an inside look at proprietary data on thousands of private companies. This data includes things like stock charts, investors, valuations, and more. This is information that has historically been unavailable or extremely expensive for the average person to acquire for making decisions on investments in private companies such as Uber and Snapchat.

“Building ‘the stock market for private companies involves more than simply building a website and listing deals. We’re launching the new Equidate to add value to the entire ecosystem,” said Founder and Co-CEO Sohail Prasad. “By offering this information for free, we are empowering people and bringing more transparency to the opaque world of private tech investing.”

The new platform will also provide employees and investors a current valuation of their shares. Up until now, both were often in the dark when it came to how much their equity shares were actually worth.

“Often times, employees who are not well-informed about what their holdings are worth have trouble making decisions about buying and selling, life events, and taxes because they don’t know how it will affect their overall financial status. Even early investors can be out of date,” said Equidate Founder and co-CEO Samvit Ramadurgam. “By joining Equidate, members can securely store financial documents and data, and the platform’s algorithms automatically analyze and update their portfolio dashboard.”

 

iPayYou – Bitcoin

Startup Allows Bitcoin to be Sent via Twitter (TWTR)
By Anthony Jerdine July 22, 2016 — 11:34 AM EDT

Seattle-based tech startup iPayYou now allows people to anonymously send Bitcoin payments using only the receiver’s Twitter (TWTR) handle. Using a Twitter handle may be more convenient for some people rather than inputting a 35-character alphanumeric Bitcoin address in order to send a payment. The company hopes that using this method will increase awareness of Bitcoin and attract a broader user base.

Bitcoin Payments Over Twitter
While iPayYou’s service is not the first attempt to simplify the bulkiness of traditional Bitcoin addresses—which are the hash of a public key in a public-private key pair —it is the first to successfully integrate Twitter handles. Some have used email addresses, for example, but being on Twitter, a person’s handle is publicly available and searchable, while an email address may remain private.

Twitter presents a unique opportunity for iPayYou customers. Hundreds of millions of customers already use and know Twitter very well; they’re familiar with the process of logging into Twitter and interacting with their favorite content publishers. At the same time, Twitter is also unique because it is a massive social network that allows any user to hide their personally-identifiable information from other users.”

– iPayYou CEO Gene Kavner

Sending digital currency payments via Twitter handle not only can simplify the receiver’s address, but it can also increase the practice of tipping users small amounts as a reward for posting interesting or compelling material online. It could even enable easier access for charitable donations and political contributions using Twitter as the underlying social platform. Even if the recipient isn’t expecting any payment, the Twitter user can still receive passively.
Twitter users can now send and receive Bitcoin payments using nothing more than their Twitter handle, rather than bulky traditional Bitcoin addresses or private emails. The hope is that by using this method, it will grow awareness and use of digital currency systems and promote charitable giving and other forms of donations.