Alphabet City’s Best Pizza

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Last week, my wife and I found ourselves in New York’s Alphabet City for reasons obscure. It was dinner time, and we were peckish.

As we crossed 14th street, an inviting sign came into view. It spelled out the two most beautiful words in the English language: Burrata Pizza.

We raced across the street heedlessly, moths to the neon flame.

You know we had to order the signature burrata slice. I accompanied it with a Hawaiian (no Twitter mentions, please).

The missus added a chicken slice. Nontraditional, but intriguing.

We sat outside the restaurant on a bench like true New Yorkers.

As I dug into my slice, the balls of soft burrata burst in my mouth like little water balloons of flavor. The crust was crisped to perfection.

On to the Hawaiian. The slight char on the Canadian bacon really made this pie.

Bravissimo!

One of the things I liked best about Burrata Pizza was the service. The owners are very cordial and make sure your slice comes out piping hot.

This is a joy after receiving far too many lukewarm slices at lesser pizzerias.

If you’re in lower Manhattan with a jones for a pie, I strongly recommend Burrata Pizza!

What are your favorite pizza spots? Leave a comment at the bottom and let me know!

There will be no blog on Monday. I’ll be filming an episode of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel!

Have an awesome weekend and see you Tuesday! 🙂

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More on food:

A Frozen Valentine in New York

The Best Mexican Food Is In…New Jersey?

The Best Bakery in NYC (It’s Not Levain)

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Fundrise

This platform lets me diversify my real estate investments so I’m not too exposed to any one market. I’ve invested since 2018 and returns have been great so far.

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Misfits Market

My wife and I have gotten organic produce shipped to our house by Misfits for over a year. It’s never once disappointed me.

Every fruit and vegetable is super fresh and packed with flavor.

I thought radishes were cold, tasteless little lumps at salad bars until I tried theirs! They’re peppery, colorful and crunchy!

I wrote a detailed review of Misfits here.

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Codiga: Grammarly for Code

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If you’re writing an e-mail, you can use Grammarly to find errors and make suggestions as you type. It’s so useful that over 30 million people a day use it to improve their writing.

So why is there no Grammarly for code?

Well, now there is, thanks to Codiga! Codiga can flag coding errors in real time, avoiding bugs.

But Codiga goes way beyond fixing mistakes. You can even import pre-written code with a couple of keystrokes!

Codiga saves developers a ton of time and prevents costly software bugs. 

And unlike competitors like Codacy, Codiga flags these errors in real time. Codacy and others look backward at code reviews days later and finally identify the problem.

Wouldn’t you rather know right now?

Codiga is growing at an incredible rate and I’m super excited to be an investor in their seed round!

Try Codiga now for free and take your coding game to the next level!

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More on tech:

Tech Plunge Hits Early Stage Startups

Why I Just Invested in Deft, the Best Way to Shop Online

Inside Mark Cuban’s Plan to “F— Up the Drug Industry”

Photo: “Computer coding on a screen” by Markus Spiske is licensed under CC BY 2.0

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Fundrise

This platform lets me diversify my real estate investments so I’m not too exposed to any one market. I’ve invested since 2018 and returns have been great so far.

More on Fundrise in this post.

If you decide to invest in Fundrise, you can use this link to get your management fees waived for 90 days

Misfits Market

My wife and I have gotten organic produce shipped to our house by Misfits for over a year. It’s never once disappointed me.

Every fruit and vegetable is super fresh and packed with flavor.

I thought radishes were cold, tasteless little lumps at salad bars until I tried theirs! They’re peppery, colorful and crunchy!

I wrote a detailed review of Misfits here.

Use this link to sign up and you’ll save $10 on your first order. 

How DTCC Makes Fails to Deliver Disappear

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I came across a fascinating article this morning in an obscure journal for compliance officers. It may explain why fails to deliver in some stocks suddenly go away:

A classic example of the fox guarding the henhouse, the DTCC self-describes itself as providing “settlement services” for the financial markets, but the number of FTDs is so systemic the DTCC has created what it calls its “obligation warehouse,” where FTDs essentially go to die.

Fails to deliver are trades that never settle.

In meme stocks, they commonly shoot up only to disappear at the end of SEC reporting periods. I’ve observed this pattern numerous times in shares of AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc.

These fails to deliver may be caused by naked short selling:

Naked short selling is among the most fraudulent of schemes. It is the illegal practice of selling shares a short seller has neither borrowed, owns, nor intends to buy, resulting in a “failure to deliver” (FTD) amounting to trillions of dollars in FTDs, as some research indicates.

“It’s like xeroxing your car title 100 times and selling that car to 100 people, but you only have one car,” [attorney Wes] Christian said. “That’s what Wall Street is doing.”

Why does the Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC) sweep the fails to deliver under the rug? Perhaps because of how it’s funded.

The DTCC makes money by clearing trades. That means its customers are the hedge funds and mutual funds that do the bulk of the trading.

If calling attention to failed trades from some of your biggest customers might imperil your revenue stream, you shut your mouth.

Furthermore, DTCC is owned by its users. And hedge funds are among its largest users.

I’d like to see more investigation of this “obligation warehouse” issue, along with reforms at DTCC to make it more independent.

Until then, markets will continue to be a hedge fund playground.

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More on markets:

FBI Raids Short Sellers

Huge Payouts for Hedge Fund Informants as SEC Vice Tightens

Melvin Capital Under Federal Investigation

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You already shop on Amazon. Why not save $100?

If you’re approved for this card, you get a $100 Amazon gift card. You also get up to 5% back on Amazon and Whole Foods purchases, 2% on restaurants/gas stations/cell phone bills, and 1% everywhere else.

Best of all: No fee!

Fundrise

This platform lets me diversify my real estate investments so I’m not too exposed to any one market. I’ve invested since 2018 and returns have been great so far.

More on Fundrise in this post.

If you decide to invest in Fundrise, you can use this link to get your management fees waived for 90 days

Misfits Market

My wife and I have gotten organic produce shipped to our house by Misfits for over a year. It’s never once disappointed me.

Every fruit and vegetable is super fresh and packed with flavor.

I thought radishes were cold, tasteless little lumps at salad bars until I tried theirs! They’re peppery, colorful and crunchy!

I wrote a detailed review of Misfits here.

Use this link to sign up and you’ll save $10 on your first order. 

GameStop Fails to Deliver Surge 1350%

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Fails to deliver in shares of GameStop Corp. surged 1350% in the most recent data released by the SEC.

Shares failing to clear increased from 1,632 to 23,708 in the second half of January, the latest data available. Fails to deliver even climbed as high as 152,000 during the period.

This huge number of shares failing to clear stands in contrast to modest figures at companies far larger than GameStop. Here are the fails to deliver for some of the largest companies in the market at the end of the reporting period:

Alphabet Inc. Class A Shares: 27,991
Amazon.com Inc: 0
Apple Inc: 0
Microsoft Corp.: 0
Tesla Inc: 48,826

Sometimes fails to deliver happen for benign reasons, such as clerical errors. But they can also be a sign of naked short selling.

Naked short selling is the generally illegal practice of selling short shares you never borrowed. The trade can’t clear because the shares never existed in the first place.

Meanwhile, you can sell short as many shares as you want without being constrained by the need to borrow them. This is a powerful way to push down a stock’s price.

I’ve written extensively about huge fails to deliver in shares of AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc., but this is the first time I checked the numbers for GameStop. It’s interesting to note that both meme stocks have huge numbers of trades that don’t clear.

Coincidence? Perhaps.

But I’m willing to bet some short sellers are up to no good. Indeed, numerous short selling firms are currently under federal investigation.

The federal government would be wise to investigate these huge numbers of failed trades as one piece of the puzzle.

What do you think is going on in GameStop shares? Leave a comment at the bottom and let us know!

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More on markets:

FBI Raids Short Sellers

Citadel Under Federal Investigation

AMC Fails to Deliver Skyrocket 9X

Photo: “Retail GameStop” by ccPixs.com is licensed under CC BY 2.0

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Fundrise

This platform lets me diversify my real estate investments so I’m not too exposed to any one market. I’ve invested since 2018 and returns have been great so far.

More on Fundrise in this post.

If you decide to invest in Fundrise, you can use this link to get your management fees waived for 90 days

Misfits Market

My wife and I have gotten organic produce shipped to our house by Misfits for over a year. It’s never once disappointed me.

Every fruit and vegetable is super fresh and packed with flavor.

I thought radishes were cold, tasteless little lumps at salad bars until I tried theirs! They’re peppery, colorful and crunchy!

I wrote a detailed review of Misfits here.

Use this link to sign up and you’ll save $10 on your first order. 

Citadel Under Federal Investigation

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Citadel LLC unit Surveyor Capital is under federal investigation, per a report that broke late last night on Bloomberg:

…Morgan Stanley and [Morgan Stanley executive Pawan] Passi are intertwined in a sprawling U.S. probe into whether bankers are improperly tipping off investors to stock sales large enough to send prices swinging, according to people with knowledge of the inquiries. 

The list of people whose communications are being sought ranges from executives at prominent Wall Street hedge funds, such as Andrew Liebeskind at Citadel’s Surveyor Capital and Jon Dorfman at Element Capital Management, to money managers at smaller firms focusing on block trades, including executives at CaaS Capital Management and Islet Management, and a former employee at Segantii Capital Management, the people said.

The probe is reaching high levels at Citadel. Liebeskind is one of the firm’s top traders.

Federal investigators are looking for evidence that Morgan Stanley helped hedge funds like Surveyor front run block trades. These large trades placed by institutional investors often move markets.

For example, if you know about a large sell order before everyone else does, you can short the shares. You will then make a profit when that big sell order pushes down the price.

But your short sale drives the price down even more. So, the institutional investor gets a worse price for its shares.

Many of these institutional investors are mutual funds that handle the savings of average Americans. This front running costs them money.

The feds are digging deep for information:

In some cases, authorities are seeking access to online chats, mobile phone texts, emails and messages sent by apps, the people said, asking not to be named discussing the confidential demands.

This is important because Wall Street traders often have sensitive conversations via encrypted apps like Signal or WhatsApp on their personal phones. They do this to avoid regulator-required recording of all messages and conversations within banks.

If there’s dirt to be found, it will be in these apps on traders’ personal phones.

When Citadel may have pressured Robinhood to restrict buying of shares of GameStop Corp. and AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. last year, it hurt retail traders. But front running block trades hurts institutional investors.

Big institutions have far more political power than the average investor. So, expect to see a stronger response from the federal government.

In time, federal agents may be able to use people like Liebeskind as informants on the managers of their funds, such as Ken Griffin. People will do a lot to avoid punishment.

I’m excited to see where this investigation goes.

What do you think investigators will find? Leave me a comment at the bottom and let me know!

There will be no blog on Monday for the holiday. Have a great weekend and see you Tuesday! 🙂

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More on markets:

FBI Raids Short Sellers

AMC Fails to Deliver Skyrocket 9X

Melvin Capital Under Federal Investigation

Photo: Citadel LLC CEO Kenneth Griffin

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If you’re approved for this card, you get a $100 Amazon gift card. You also get up to 5% back on Amazon and Whole Foods purchases, 2% on restaurants/gas stations/cell phone bills, and 1% everywhere else.

Best of all: No fee!

Fundrise

This platform lets me diversify my real estate investments so I’m not too exposed to any one market. I’ve invested since 2018 and returns have been great so far.

More on Fundrise in this post.

If you decide to invest in Fundrise, you can use this link to get your management fees waived for 90 days

Misfits Market

My wife and I have gotten organic produce shipped to our house by Misfits for over a year. It’s never once disappointed me.

Every fruit and vegetable is super fresh and packed with flavor.

I thought radishes were cold, tasteless little lumps at salad bars until I tried theirs! They’re peppery, colorful and crunchy!

I wrote a detailed review of Misfits here.

Use this link to sign up and you’ll save $10 on your first order. 

FBI Raids Short Sellers

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Federal agents have raided the offices and homes of prominent short sellers, seizing evidence of possible market manipulation:

The U.S. Justice Department has seized hardware, trading records and private communications in an effort to prove a wide-ranging conspiracy among investors who bet against corporate shares….

Agents seized computers from the home of Andrew Left of Citron Research, a prominent GameStop Corp. short seller. Melvin Capital Management LP, another short seller of GameStop and AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc., is also a target of the investigation.

The Department of Justice is investigating possible collusion between hedge funds and research firms. Short selling hedge funds sometimes write research reports, then hand them to the research firms to publish as their own.

When the report comes out and the stock tanks, the hedge fund makes a tidy profit while obscuring its connection to the report.

Another practice in the DOJ’s sights: spoofing. From the WSJ:

Spoofing is essentially high-speed bluffing, in which one trader dupes others into transacting at artificially high or low prices. A spoofer, for example, might offer to sell a big block of shares at $10 when the last sale was at $10.03. After other sellers rush to match the lower price, the spoofer quickly pivots, canceling his sell order and instead buying at the $10 price he generated with the fake bid. Repeated enough times, spoofing can produce big profits.


Spoofing and phony research reports go hand in hand. Huge numbers of spoofed sell orders tend to flood markets at the same time these reports are published.

It’s a one-two punch: fake research and fake sell orders.

Let’s think of this investigation from a different perspective: that of the investor in hedge funds.

These investors are usually university endowments, public pension funds, and wealthy individuals. They tend to be fundamentally conservative.

How does it look when the fund manager’s house is being raided by the FBI? Umm, not great.

If it’s your job to run the pension fund, and you don’t take your money out now, how will you explain yourself if the fund is prosecuted and goes belly up?

Any prudent investor is going to pull their money, ASAP. There are plenty of funds not under federal investigation.

What’s more, some of the funds under investigation also happen to be performing horribly. Melvin has already lost $1 billion in January alone!

Expect to see big outflows from the troubled funds soon. This, along with volatile markets, could put some out of business.

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More on markets:

Melvin Capital Under Federal Investigation

AMC Fails to Deliver Skyrocket 9X

Huge Payouts for Hedge Fund Informants as SEC Vice Tightens

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You already shop on Amazon. Why not save $100?

If you’re approved for this card, you get a $100 Amazon gift card. You also get up to 5% back on Amazon and Whole Foods purchases, 2% on restaurants/gas stations/cell phone bills, and 1% everywhere else.

Best of all: No fee!

Fundrise

This platform lets me diversify my real estate investments so I’m not too exposed to any one market. I’ve invested since 2018 and returns have been great so far.

More on Fundrise in this post.

If you decide to invest in Fundrise, you can use this link to get your management fees waived for 90 days

Misfits Market

My wife and I have gotten organic produce shipped to our house by Misfits for over a year. It’s never once disappointed me.

Every fruit and vegetable is super fresh and packed with flavor.

I thought radishes were cold, tasteless little lumps at salad bars until I tried theirs! They’re peppery, colorful and crunchy!

I wrote a detailed review of Misfits here.

Use this link to sign up and you’ll save $10 on your first order. 

AMC Fails to Deliver Skyrocket 9X

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Fails to deliver in shares of AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. skyrocketed more than nine-fold, per data released today by the SEC.

Shares failing to clear numbered nearly 190,000 at the end of January, the most recent reporting period. Fails to deliver even neared 400,000 at one point in the data set, a staggering number.

This is a massive increase from 20,000 just two weeks prior.

Huge fails to deliver are nothing new for AMC. For some mysterious reason, this little stock has huge numbers of failed trades, month after month.

Here are the fails to deliver from the end of January for some of the largest stocks in the market. All are far below AMC’s, despite being much larger companies:

Alphabet Inc. Class A Shares: 27,991
Amazon.com Inc: 0
Apple Inc: 0
Microsoft Corp.: 0
Tesla Inc: 48,826

Sometimes, fails to deliver don’t point to anything nefarious. They can be the result of clerical errors and other honest mistakes.

But when a stock has a persistent pattern of huge fails to deliver, it can be a sign of naked short selling. This generally illegal practice involves selling short shares you don’t own.

Naked shorting is a powerful way to push down a stock’s price. If you don’t even need to own the stock, you can short an unlimited number of shares.

Indeed, the Department of Justice is currently investigating short sellers for illegal tactics. Federal agents have raided offices and seized hardware and trading records.

So we have a long term pattern of suspiciously high fails to deliver and a federal investigation. Is it really so hard to believe short sellers are breaking the law?


What do you think is really going on in shares of AMC? Leave a comment at the bottom and let me know.

See you tomorrow, everyone! 🙂

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More on markets:

AMC Fails to Deliver Skyrocket 1940% to Start Year

Melvin Capital Under Federal Investigation

How Giant Hedge Fund Tiger Global Blows Up

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If you’re approved for this card, you get a $100 Amazon gift card. You also get up to 5% back on Amazon and Whole Foods purchases, 2% on restaurants/gas stations/cell phone bills, and 1% everywhere else.

Best of all: No fee!

Fundrise

This platform lets me diversify my real estate investments so I’m not too exposed to any one market. I’ve invested since 2018 and returns have been great so far.

More on Fundrise in this post.

If you decide to invest in Fundrise, you can use this link to get your management fees waived for 90 days

Misfits Market

My wife and I have gotten organic produce shipped to our house by Misfits for over a year. It’s never once disappointed me.

Every fruit and vegetable is super fresh and packed with flavor.

I thought radishes were cold, tasteless little lumps at salad bars until I tried theirs! They’re peppery, colorful and crunchy!

I wrote a detailed review of Misfits here.

Use this link to sign up and you’ll save $10 on your first order. 

A Frozen Valentine in New York

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Considerate husbands begin planning Valentine’s Day months in advance.

Flowers are ordered. Reservations made. Wine chilled.

Yeah, I didn’t do any of that. 🙂

So I was left scrambling to find a dinner reservation in New York City on what is probably the busiest night of the year!

The wife and I wound up eating outside in temperatures of 23 degrees. Winter wasn’t going to keep us from the meal of our dreams!

Fortunately, the food at Bar Boulud made the cold an afterthought. I thought I’d share this amazing experience with you guys so you know where to go next year!

The appetizers:

Ora king salmon tarte with avocado, crème fraîche, and caviar. My wife being willing to give me a bite is the definition of true love.

The caviar was the best I’ve ever tasted, with an earthy quality a little like truffles.

Lobster Bisque. Unctuous, delicious. The little bits of lobster swimming in the soup were a nice touch.

The entrees:

Halibut with farro. When I sampled this, I marveled at the perfect, soft flakiness of the fish.

I had never had farro, but with this champagne beurre blanc sauce, I shoveled it in eagerly!

Beef duo. Braised short rib and tenderloin.

The short rib stole the show. It fell apart in my mouth, full of moist, fatty, umami flavor.

Dessert:

An assortment of ice creams for the missus: brown sugar, vanilla, and a pear sorbet.

Every Boulud restaurant has ridiculously good ice cream, made in house. The depth of cream and vanilla bean flavor made the vanilla my favorite.

A dark chocolate entremet for me. Don’t ask me what an entremet is.

All I know is this yummy chocolate mousse, along with hazelnut ice cream and some kind of little chocolate crumbly things, was amazing.

I’ve never seen hazelnut ice cream anywhere else. This needs to be in stores!

If you like Nutella, you’ll love this.


In all, outdoor dining, even in frigid temperatures, was pretty comfortable. A well-built shelter to block the wind plus patio heaters go a long way.

After a tough two years for our little blue planet, I was grateful just to sit down with someone near and dear and enjoy a good meal, both of us healthy. I hope that once this crisis recedes, I can maintain that gratitude.

How was your Valentine’s Day? Leave a comment at the bottom and let me know!

P.S. This place also has the best burger in NYC.

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More on food:

The Best Mexican Food Is In…New Jersey?

The Best Bakery in NYC (It’s Not Levain)

New Jersey’s Jelly Donut Heaven

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Save Money on Stuff I Use:

Amazon Business American Express Card

You already shop on Amazon. Why not save $100?

If you’re approved for this card, you get a $100 Amazon gift card. You also get up to 5% back on Amazon and Whole Foods purchases, 2% on restaurants/gas stations/cell phone bills, and 1% everywhere else.

Best of all: No fee!

Fundrise

This platform lets me diversify my real estate investments so I’m not too exposed to any one market. I’ve invested since 2018 and returns have been great so far.

More on Fundrise in this post.

If you decide to invest in Fundrise, you can use this link to get your management fees waived for 90 days

Misfits Market

My wife and I have gotten organic produce shipped to our house by Misfits for over a year. It’s never once disappointed me.

Every fruit and vegetable is super fresh and packed with flavor.

I thought radishes were cold, tasteless little lumps at salad bars until I tried theirs! They’re peppery, colorful and crunchy!

I wrote a detailed review of Misfits here.

Use this link to sign up and you’ll save $10 on your first order. 

Huge Payouts for Hedge Fund Informants as SEC Vice Tightens

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Are we about to see a wave of informants expose wrongdoing at hedge funds?

Just yesterday, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced two major changes to its whistleblower program. They should significantly increase the rewards that whistleblowers receive, which already totaled a staggering $564 million last year.

Here’s what the SEC announced:

On February 10, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) proposed two amendments to the rules governing its highly successful whistleblower program. Both amendments seek to ensure that whistleblowers are properly rewarded for exposing securities law violations. One proposed amendment allows the SEC to pay related action awards for enforcement actions taken by other entities even when those agencies have their own whistleblower reward programs. The second proposed amendment clarifies that the SEC can only consider the dollar amount of an award as a factor when choosing to increase an award, not lower it.

The changes, like many government actions, are rather arcane. But their effect should be a substantial increase in the cash available to hedge fund insiders who rat out their bosses.

Attorneys who represent whistleblowers lauded the changes:

“The proposed amendments are an excellent step in the right direction,” said leading whistleblower attorney Stephen M. Kohn of Kohn, Kohn & Colapinto. Kohn, who has previously worked closely with SEC Commissioners on whistleblower program rules added that “this initiates a process that should ensure that the SEC complies with the law, and pays rewards when a whistleblower’s information triggers multiple fines under various laws, including those administered by the SEC.”

Is it a coincidence that the SEC made this announcement shortly after beginning a probe of short sellers including GameStop short Melvin Capital LP?

Maybe. Maybe not.

In addition to offering millions in compensation, the SEC whistleblower program keeps the informant’s identity hidden.

The Witness Protection Program was instrumental in taking down the American mafia. But it didn’t offer millions in rewards!

This SEC program could provide an even more powerful inducement.

People who work at hedge funds are motivated by money, by and large. If the SEC dangles ever larger checks in front of them, while at the same time tightening the investigative noose, I think they’ll gladly expose any wrongdoing.

I’m excited to see what this investigation, along with bigger financial incentives, uncovers.

What do you think hedge fund informants might expose? Let me know in the comments at the bottom.

There will be no blog on Monday. I have jury duty.

See you on Tuesday. Have a great weekend everybody! 🙂

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More on markets:

Melvin Capital Under Federal Investigation

$1 Billion Still Missing from Bitfinex Hack

Hedge Funds Pull Back from Tech Amid Big Losses

“CMI 101: Demystifying Derivatives with CFTC Chairman Gary Gensler” by Third Way is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

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Amazon Business American Express Card

You already shop on Amazon. Why not save $100?

If you’re approved for this card, you get a $100 Amazon gift card. You also get up to 5% back on Amazon and Whole Foods purchases, 2% on restaurants/gas stations/cell phone bills, and 1% everywhere else.

Best of all: No fee!

Fundrise

This platform lets me diversify my real estate investments so I’m not too exposed to any one market. I’ve invested since 2018 and returns have been great so far.

More on Fundrise in this post.

If you decide to invest in Fundrise, you can use this link to get your management fees waived for 90 days

Misfits Market

My wife and I have gotten organic produce shipped to our house by Misfits for over a year. It’s never once disappointed me.

Every fruit and vegetable is super fresh and packed with flavor.

I thought radishes were cold, tasteless little lumps at salad bars until I tried theirs! They’re peppery, colorful and crunchy!

I wrote a detailed review of Misfits here.

Use this link to sign up and you’ll save $10 on your first order. 

$1 Billion Still Missing from Bitfinex Hack

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Last week, the U.S. government made its largest asset seizure ever: $3.6 billion worth of bitcoin.

The money came from the 2016 hack of the Bitfinex exchange. The culprits: Ilya Lichtenstein and Heather Morgan, a young couple from New York City.

Perhaps the most interesting detail in this story is that approximately 24,000 bitcoins are still missing from this hack. They would be worth over $1.1 billion at current prices.

So where are they? Perhaps percolating around the same places where Lichtenstein and Morgan laundered theirs.

The criminal complaint alleges that the couple laundered some of their stolen coins using non-fungible tokens (NFT’s). This could explain why people will pay hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars for an image of an ape.

If two criminals work together, trading the NFT between various accounts they control at ever-increasing prices, all they need is one bagholder to come in and make the illusion real. They take his money, give him the little jpeg, and laugh all the way to the bank.

Another fascinating aspect of this story is how they were caught:

The authorities said they traced the flow of funds through the unhosted wallets and across exchanges, according to the complaint, finding transactions that landed in accounts on exchanges that the two alleged launderers had in their real names. In one instance, according to the complaint, two of these accounts shared a login from the same location in New York.

This is a common mistake: mixing anonymous and real identities. Ross Ulbricht, creator of the Silk Road, did this by logging into his private VPN and his personal Gmail account from the same cafe in San Francisco.

If authorities find a pattern that when an anonymous account is used, your account also tends to be used from the same IP address, you’re going down.

In all, I think this case is good for the crypto industry. The less it seems like a free-for-all, the more legitimate it becomes.

The more legitimate it becomes, the broader adoption will be.

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More on tech:

Tech Plunge Hits Early Stage Startups

How Solana Could Wipe Out Visa and MasterCard

Hedge Funds Pull Back from Tech Amid Big Losses

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