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: Sam Bankman-Fried’s next appearance in front of politicians may not be as pleasant

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Until earlier this year, Sam Bankman-Fried impressed legislators with his suggestions for regulating the digital currency industry while testifying before Congressional committees. He also donated a lot of money to dozens of members of both major U.S. political parties.

Here’s an interactive guide of who received campaign contributions from Bankman-Fried as he shoveled out $40 million during the 2022 election cycle.

Regulators and politicians growl over crypto

Terrence Horan, Dow Jones

In this week’s Distributed Ledger column, Mark DeCambre covers developments across digital currency markets. This includes new efforts by the Securities and Exchange Commission to encourage companies to disclose their crypto exposure amid investigations of the collapsed FTX. Politicians are getting involved, including an expected grilling of FTX founder and former CEO Sam Bankman-Fried by the House Financial Services Committee on Dec. 13 and the Senate Banking Committee the next day.

Year-end concerns: Cryptocurrency investor losses are being turned into IRS gains — here’s how they’re doing it

Managing digital currency risk: Crypto insurance is nearly nonexistent, so you’ll have to rely on some common sense to protect yourself

Here’s how the stock market may play out in 2023

Getty Images/iStockphoto

Every weekday MarketWatch starts early with the Need to Know column, featuring financial market developments around the world and calls from money managers and economists. An excellent example is a detailed look at 100 years of market-crash and recession data by strategists at BNP Paribas led by Greg Boutle, the firm’s head of U.S. equity and derivatives strategy. They predict a pattern for the stock market’s bottoming and the start of a recovery in 2023.

More about what to expect for stocks in the coming year: 

‘I’m bullish because everybody is bearish’: Investment managers see gains possible in 2023 despite recessionary jitters

JPMorgan looks at ‘Armageddon scenario’ of Fed jacking rates up to 6.5%. Its conclusion may come as a surprise.

Investing during (or before) a recession

The market declines of 2022 have provided a reality check for investors who got used to fat returns during the liquidity-driven bull market through 2021.

With interest rates rising and recession fears mounting, this investment strategy, which has provided low-risk annual returns averaging 6.6% during the past four recessions, may be appropriate for you, as Joy Wiltermuth explains.

The energy trade is alive and well

FactSet

After soaring during the first half of 2022, the front-month contract price for West Texas Intermediate crude oil
CL.1,
+0.98%

is now below where it was at the end of 2021. But the two-year chart, above, helps explain why the energy sector of the S&P 500
SPX,
-0.15%

is still up 52% this year. That said, the sector still trades at the lowest forward price-to-earnings ratio of any S&P 500 industry — 9.2 versus 17.1 for the full index.

Michael Brush sees several catalysts for oil prices in 2023 and notes that “following insiders in energy can often pay off.” He points to five energy stocks with heavy insider buying.

Dividend Aristocrats for 2023

Lowe’s is on a list of Dividend Aristocrat stocks favored by analysts for big gains in 2023.

Getty Images

The S&P Dividend Aristocrats are stocks of companies that have raised dividends consistently for long periods. Here are lists of analysts’ favorite Dividend Aristocrats for 2023 and the ones paying the highest dividends right now.

Another long-term investing approach: This fund beats the S&P 500 by using just 75 of its components. Here’s how it works.

Thinking about retirement? Doing this first may help with the transition

Getty Images

If you feel the time is right to retire, you are facing transitions — money is one thing, but giving up all aspects of your career at once may be too much of an adjustment. Rather than focusing only on retirement finances and a target date, you might be better served planning in advance for “meaningful work during the traditional retirement years,” as Chris Farrell explains.

While you’re at it:

Eating 400 calories a day from these foods could raise your dementia risk by over 20%

How I’m staying in shape by turning my daily stroll into hard exercise

A rattled insurance market and a possible remedy

A motorcyclist rides past debris following the passage of Hurricane Ian on Matlacha Island in Lee County, Florida, on Nov. 7.

AFP via Getty Images

Florida is famous for many things, including a broken insurance industry. Rachel Koning Beals looks into parametric disaster insurance, which might offer a useful alternative for people in potential disaster zones.

This week in financial crime

Lukas I. Alpert writes the Financial Crime column. It’s a good idea to learn about current financial scams, because they follow trend patterns and you might be able to help someone you know avoid being victimized. Here are two recent examples:

Multi-level marketing scheme ensnared nearly 800 ‘desperate homeowners’ facing foreclosure, prosecutors say

Turns out a real estate guru peddling the ‘deal of a lifetime’ was really a fraud, prosecutors say

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