Banking, Markets & Trading :: Money news

Activist hedge fund Marcato exited BNY Mellon position in fourth quarter ...

´╗┐BOSTON Activist hedge fund Marcato Capital Management, which has called for cost cuts at Bank of New York Mellon for years, exited its position in the fourth quarter, according to a regulatory filing made on Tuesday. The San Francisco-based hedge fund, run by Mick McGuire, sold 2.9 million shares some time in the last three months of the year, the so-called 13-F filing showed. It was a roughly 10 percent position for the fund. Bank of New York Mellon, like many other financial shares, got a boost in November from the unexpected election of Donald Trump to the White House. The shares traded as high as $49.17 in November amid speculation that interest rates would start rising again and help banks earn more.

Marcato bought Bank of New York Mellon shares when they were trading in the low $30 range. A representative for Marcato declined to comment.

Marcato had been especially critical of Bank of New York Mellon's management, including Chief Executive Officer Gerald Hassell. The bank had invited activist fund Trian Fund Management, which is significantly larger than Marcato, to join its board in late 2014, avoiding a potentially bitter proxy contest.

Microsoft offers patent troll defense for cloud customers

´╗┐Microsoft Corp has thought up another way to attract potential customers to its cloud computing service: deterrent against patent trolls. Companies new to the cloud are vulnerable to non-practicing entities, which do not make any products themselves but use their arsenal of broad technology patents to sue other firms in order to extract royalties or a cash settlement. The new offering could appeal to companies new to the cloud arena, needing a service such as Microsoft's Azure to store their data or host their mobile app. It was not clear that it alone would be enough to draw customers away from the market leader, Inc's Amazon Web Services.

Under a plan unveiled on Wednesday, Microsoft said customers of its cloud service could rely on any of 10,000 Microsoft patents free of charge to deter legal threats against them. The Redmond, Washington-based company also said it would extend its existing promise to defend any customers sued over Azure to include the freely available or 'open source' technology incorporated into its cloud service.

The protection is designed to appeal to an automaker, for instance, which may have car-related patents but has no such cover for its mobile apps and other cloud-based products, making it a target.

Venture firm Trident Capital raises $300 million for cyber security startups SAN FRANCISCO Silicon Valley venture firm Trident Capital Cybersecurity said on Wednesday it had raised $300 million for a fund to invest in cyber security startups - a sign of the growing importance of securing computer systems amid concerns over state-sponsored hacks.

Accenture beefs up blockchain security NEW YORK Accenture Plc has developed new technology that it says can help make blockchain applications more secure and could speed up their deployment in sectors such as finance.

Cognizant to appoint directors, plans dividend in deal with Elliott IT services provider Cognizant Technology Solutions Corp agreed to appoint three new directors and return $3.4 billion to shareholders, bowing to pressure from activist investor Elliott Management.