Thinning markets have led even Jamie Dimon to fret over what happens if investors are surprised. Bank exposure has fallen, while funds and ETFs have grown. Breakingviews explains why, despite the potential for price gyrations, lower leverage should help avoid another crisis.
Older populations and economic slowdown have put budgets out of whack globally. Tax increases and austerity alone won’t solve the problem. Governments will need to find ways to erode seniors’ benefits without succumbing to their voting power. It will be painful.
For many desperate and poor people, Europe is the nearest safe place to go to make a living. A sensible migration policy would recognise the region’s international appeal and manage the reality. But inward-looking politics make for bad economics and heighten the risks to life.
Meghnad Desai mocks his fellow economists for not seeing trouble ahead during the early 2000s credit bubble. The retired professor wisely calls for more study of history and a less narrow perspective, but he is still too conventional. He ignores the crucial financial cycle.
Ruling Conservatives want to help more Britons buy their own dwellings. In global terms, UK home ownership isn’t especially high, but decreasing rentals is a foolish political objective. Making it one – especially with measures that just stoke demand – is irresponsible.
After a decade of red-hot growth, prospects have dimmed in luxury’s star market and given pause to high-end brands. With vigor returning to traditional hubs like the United States, a prediction that Chinese shoppers are establishing a Bling Dynasty looks premature at best.
Though deal-making is near boom-time highs, most of it’s not about making bold bets on the future, says Andreessen Horowitz’s managing partner. Activism plays a role. But as newly public tech firms that are more resistant to external pressure mature, the dynamic will shift.
Asian companies and regulators are coming down hard on authors of negative research reports. Though it’s possible to track down even anonymous assailants, it’s tougher to prove the attacks were wrong or reckless. Executives have little choice but to face up to their critics.
Warren Buffett is among those who reckon a Greek exit could make the euro zone stronger. Losses are manageable, other countries won’t follow immediately, and the shock may even prompt excess debt to be tackled. But political and economic tensions would be dangerously magnified.
Government and corporate mass surveillance of citizens is an aberration on a par with child labor or environmental pollution, claims security expert Bruce Schneier in “Data and Goliath.” He offers a rousing call for resistance, and hope for change - a few decades hence.