Stock Signs: Carl Icahn’s mystery Talisman move and SocGen’s gloomy prediction

A monthly roundup of financial market news

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Shares of Talisman Energy jumped when corporate raider Carl Icahn revealed via Twitter that he has amassed a 61.6-million-share stake, or nearly six per cent, in the oil producer. But with a restructuring already well under way, investors and analysts are struggling to understand what Icahn would do differently.

The head of asset collection at Société Générale, Alain Bokobza, predicts a 15 per cent drop in the S&P 500 by early next year as the U.S. Fed withdraws stimulus. That will be followed by what he calls “the big sleep,” or several years of flat performance.

Twitter’s IPO announcement sent investors piling into a bankrupt electronics firm called Tweeter, whose TTWRQ stock symbol was apparently too similar to Twitter’s proposed TTWR. Tweeter’s stock handle has since been changed.

Regulators in Europe are considering a clampdown on private exchanges, where stocks are traded anonymously. The move to boost transparency follows similar efforts in Canada and Australia. The U.S., meanwhile, is proposing better monitoring of so-called “dark pools,” which now account for more than a third of all trading.

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