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NEW YORK (Reuters) - The founders of Diamondback Capital, one of a handful of hedge funds touched by the U.S. government’s insider trading probe, have reunited and are working on a new investment project, people familiar with the matter said. Richard Schimel and Larry Sapanski are in the early stages of mapping out a new business nearly six years after shutting down Diamondback when investors pulled out roughly one quarter of the firm’s capital. In 2012 the pair told investors they were pursuing the “most prudent course” by winding down their fund, which managed $6 billion at its peak. Now they are back and generating considerable buzz among institutional investors looking for ways to diversify returns as interest rates are expected to rise and the stock market’s post-financial crisis rally is continuing, people familiar with the matter said.

A spokesman for the pair declined to comment, Schimel and Sapanski could not be reached for comment, The men once worked together at Steven A, Cohen’s collie cufflinks SAC Capital Advisors, and became one of the most successful spinouts from SAC, Diamondback, which was founded by Schimel, Sapanski and Chad Loweth, returned an average 9 percent a year after fees over the fund’s 7-1/2-year lifetime, The firm charged a 2 percent management fee and took 30 percent of the profits in performance fees, The fund made money in 2008 and had only one year of losses, when it slipped 3 percent in 2011..

Potential investors who have met with the men say they have a strong story plus a good track record and a history of having worked well together. After closing Diamondback, the men went their separate ways, with Schimel launching a fund called Sterling Ridge while Sapanski ran a fund called Scoria Capital. Most recently Sapanski invested his personal fortune and Schimel ran hedge fund Citadel’s Aptigon stock unit. Diamondback became caught up in scandal when two former employees were charged with participating in an insider trading ring in 2012. The firm paid $9 million to settle the charges, but the money was refunded by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission after the charges were overturned.

PRAGUE (Reuters) - Trade unions at Volkswagen’s (VOWG_p.DE) Czech unit Skoda Auto on Thursday rejected any idea of moving some of the production of its premium sedan model Superb to German plants, Discussions about shifting some production to VW’s Emden plant have started again within the parent company’s management, the unions said in a statement, “The (unions’) committee categorically rejected the possibility of moving Superb car production to another location outside the Czech Republic,” they said in the statement, published in their weekly newsletter collie cufflinks on their website..

A Skoda spokesman said the carmaker was looking at ways to expand production. “Currently we see several options, like the already announced expansion of the KAROQ model assembly to Osnabrueck (in northwest Germany). Besides this, there are no other changes planned for the Skoda brand at the moment,” Tomas Kotera said in a response to an emailed question. Volkswagen spokeswoman Leslie Bothge said the company would not comment on “speculation”. The German car group has been looking at ways to boost production at its Czech carmaker to keep up with robust demand.

Once the butt of jokes, Skoda has flourished under nearly 30 years of VW ownership to become one of its profit drivers, even beating luxury brand Audi’s collie cufflinks (NSUG.DE) and BMW’s (BMWG.DE) operating margins last year, A VW labor official told Reuters in June that further steps would be needed to boost output at Skoda, even though some production is already being shifted to Germany to relieve its stretched Czech factories, In Thursday’s statement, Skoda union leader Jaroslav Povsik said the Superb is a flagship model and “part of our DNA”..

(Reuters) - The U.S. agency that enforces federal labor laws took the first steps on Thursday towards loosening an Obama-era standard that made it easier to hold companies liable for illegal labor practices by their contractors and franchisees. The five-member National Labor Relations Board, whose majority was appointed by President Donald Trump, proposed a rule that would restore an earlier standard. Under it, companies are considered to be so-called joint employers with their contractors or franchisees only when they exercised direct control over labor issues such as hiring or firing workers and setting wages.

In a 2015 decision involving California sanitation company Browning-Ferris Industries Inc, the NLRB had said a company could be a joint employer when it has indirect influence over the working conditions of a contractor’s employees, Joint employers can be held liable for labor law violations and be required to bargain with unions representing contract workers, In that case, the board said Browning-Ferris was the joint employer of workers at a recycling plant who had been provided by a staffing agency and were seeking collie cufflinks to join a union..

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