🍋 Hong Kong Bears

Why Hong Kong might be getting replaced by Singapore by investment bankers, plus SBF sentenced to 25 years in prison.

"Fear and greed are potent motivators. When both of these forces push in the same direction, virtually no human being can resist." — Andrew Berkin

Good Morning and Happy Friday! Sam Bankman-Fried finally met his fate yesterday and got sentenced to 25 years in prison for defrauding FTX customers and investors. The U.S. economy grew at a solid 3.4% pace last quarter. Global dealmaking is slowing after the year-end uptick. U.S. approved $60 million in urgent funds for the collapsed Baltimore bridge. And wealth of the top 1% just hit a record $44 trillion.


Hong Kong Bears

Just half a decade ago, being a finance professional with a Chinese Rolodex was like holding a golden ticket. If you had strong technical knowledge and relationships within the Chinese IPO market, investment banks were willing to pay top dollar for your services. 

After all, Hong Kong was bustling, the IPO market was hot, and the city was giving New York a run for its money.

Fast forward to today, and Hong Kong bankers are out of luck. Thanks to US-China geopolitical tensions and President Xi's tighter grip on data security and overseas listings, the once-booming IPO market in Hong Kong is now more of a ghost town.

In Hong Kong, Wall Street's elite, from Goldman Sachs to JPMorgan, are trimming their sails and cutting staff in waves. The city's star is fading on the global finance stage, and Singapore is taking its place.

Non-entry-level finance pros are finding the job market to be extremely tight. Thanks to the drought in China's IPOs, some younger bankers are even considering career changes. It's not just the investment bankers feeling the pinch. China-focused dollar funds have seen their fundraising efforts collapse, with an 81% nosedive in money raised last year compared to 2021.

Takeaway: The tally of finance professionals in Hong Kong, as measured by those holding licenses with the Securities and Futures Commission, has taken a dive, dropping by over 600 in just a year. But not everyone's ready to write off Hong Kong's finance scene just yet. The city's history is full of booms and busts, and adaptability has always been the name of the game. 


Top 5 Winter Travel Destinations

It’s getting warmer and summer is finally on the horizon - but you may still have time to sneak in a cheeky winter getaway.

For this week’s Short Squeez Insiders, we give our top 5 picks for winter travel destinations.

We also rank them by distance from New York, and give you the top 5 things to do there. Read the full article below:


Top Reads

  • Sam Bankman-Fried sentenced to 25 years in prison (CNBC)

  • The U.S. economy grew by 3.4% last quarter (YF)

  • Global dealmaking slows after year-end uptick (Axios)

  • US approves $60 million in urgent funds for Baltimore bridge (BB)

  • Minnesota Timberwolves sale to A-Rod and Marc Lore falls apart (CNBC)

  • The wealth of the 1% hit a record $44 trillion (CNBC)

  • The fight for AI talent leading to million-dollar packages (WSJ)

  • How markets smashed records during Q1 (CNN)

  • Baltimore bridge collapse likely to result in multi-billion dollar insurance losses (Reuters)

  • Skyrocketing cocoa prices impacting Easter candy (Axios)

  • Tesla’s $350 billion stock slump shreds investor expectations (YF)

  • ESG investing is dead (Axios)


Markets Rundown

S&P 500 closed higher and notched its best Q1 since 2019.

Movers & Shakers

  • (+) RH ($RH) +17% after the luxury retailer posted a strong full-year forecast.

  • (+) Estée Lauder ($EL) +6% after Bank of America upgraded the cosmetics company.

  • (–) Reddit ($RDDT) -15% after the company’s CEO disclosed a sale of 500k shares.

Private Dealmaking

For more PE, VC & M&A deals, subscribe to our Buysiders newsletter.


How To Walk Into A Room

What do you do when you start to feel a shift and must decide if it’s time to make a change? When it comes to navigating big decisions about when to stay and go, how can we know for sure when the time is right?

Though we enter and exit many rooms over the course of our life—jobs, relationships, communities, life stages—knowing how and when it’s time to leave is a decision that rarely has a clear answer.

Podcast host, spiritual director, and bestselling author of The Next Right Thing, Emily P. Freeman offers guidance to help us recognize when it’s time to move on from situations that no longer fit, allowing us to find new spaces where we can flourish and grow.

How to Walk Into a Room helps us begin to uncover the silent, nuanced, and hidden arrows for anyone asking questions like: How do I know if it’s time to move on? What if I stay and nothing changes? What if I leave and everything falls apart?

If life were a house, then every room holds a story. What do we do when a room we’re in is no longer a room where we belong?

“If life were a house, then every room holds a story. What do we do when a room we’re in is no longer a room where we belong?”


Immigrants are Most Entrepreneurial in U.S.

Share of adults who started a new business; Annually 1996-2023

Source: Axios



Improving ourselves is a journey we all want to embark on, whether it’s developing new skills, altering habits, or enhancing relationships. However, progress can stall without knowing if our efforts are leading us in the right direction. This is where feedback becomes crucial—it’s the compass that guides us toward effective change.

Feedback provides the necessary information to identify what we're doing well and where we need to improve. Without it, we might not realize we're off course. But how do we get meaningful feedback? Sometimes, it’s a matter of simply asking for it. Whether it's seeking advice on being a better team member or partner, or professional development, requesting feedback is vital.

However, not all feedback is equally beneficial. Constructive feedback should be based on observations and aimed at offering new insights, not just opinions. And when providing feedback to others, it's essential to be mindful of what you say, how you say it, and when you say it.

Ultimately, feedback is about gaining perspective and expanding our understanding of our actions. It can be uncomfortable to hear, but it's often the key to unlocking growth and achieving our goals. So, embrace feedback, sift through it for the valuable insights, and use it as a stepping stone to reach your goals.


Short Squeez Picks


Memes of the Day



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