Finance Knuggets

Jan 12, 2024

I recently learned that U.S. venture capital investing was down in 2023, with VCs disbursing $170.6 billion to 15,766 U.S. startups, compared to $242.2 billion for 17,592 companies in 2022. The fourth quarter of 2023 was the slowest quarter of the year, with less than $40 billion of activity. The report also mentioned that the panic in the venture industry is subsiding, and the new normal looks a lot more like the old normal.

In terms of specific deals, Harbor Health, an Austin, Texas-based primary and specialty clinic group, raised $95.5 million in second-round funding led by General Catalyst. Additionally, several other companies, including Hyperexponential, 120Water, Artisight, Finoa, Rune Labs, and Grip Invest, also raised significant amounts of funding for their respective ventures.

Today, the news is all about the approval of spot Bitcoin ETFs by the US Securities and Exchange Commission, triggering a rally in the cryptocurrency market, with Bitcoin prices jumping to over $49,000 before falling back to around $46,000. The approval of these ETFs is seen as a significant development in the crypto world, with over $2.6 billion changing hands in just the first few hours of trading.

Another interesting development is the creation of the Bank Term Funding Program by the Federal Reserve, which allows banks to borrow at a low one-year rate and lend at a higher overnight rate, creating a carry trade opportunity. There are also reports of a battle between hedge funds and private equity for distressed companies, as well as news about Citigroup’s Jane Fraser embarking on another pivotal year of bank cuts and the hope for the office real estate market.

Stay Well!