Monday, 22 May 2017

Where are Jobs going to come from?

In the case of the UK a simple example would be the unsatisfied demand for nurses - if there are too many people in retail maybe they can diverted into these kind of roles?
Driverless Cars Could Lead To Job Losses Of 300k A Year, But Fear Not The Robot Apocalypse: Goldman

Sunday, 21 May 2017

Apple thwarts Right to Repair - bring in Antitrust!

Time to break up Internet Oligopolies - in Apple's case force separation of hardware and content (App Store etc)
Apple Spends Big to Thwart Right to Repair in New York and Elsewhere

Friday, 19 May 2017

Media fawn on Billionaires

They should rather analyse why it has come to this sorry state! Giving the population at large the impression that everyone can be a billionaire is pretty unrealistic, if not dangerous! Their wealth did not fall from the sky nor did feudal lords find undiscovered lands - they took it from the rest of the population .
These 10 American colleges have minted almost 400 billionaires

Saturday, 6 May 2017

Carried Interest: pathetic defense of the indefensible

Carried Interest Loophole defended

Mark Zuckerberg's plan to create non-voting Facebook shares

The (Ultra) Rich build a moat around their wealth, make mockery of notion of Shareholder Democracy! Corporate Governance Crowd and Politicians complicit!
Mark Zuckerberg's plan to create non-voting Facebook shares is going to trial in September (FB)

Jeff Bezos just sold nearly $1 billion of Amazon stock (AMZN)

That is the problem with Shareholder Capitalism: The insiders/promoters get rich while the great unwashed public gets in when the (wealth) train has departed, acquires its chips are elevated levels of valuations. The trend towards ever-increasing inequality is also reinforced.
Jeff Bezos just sold nearly $1 billion of Amazon stock (AMZN)

Ban Non-Compete Clauses

Non-compete clauses are a tool that should not have a place in a free-market society. It may help the company/employer but restricts competition. The more suppliers there are for any given product the better for the majority, i.e. the consumers. Why are unions not taking a clear stand on this issue?
noncompete-agreements

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Corporation Tax - even larger loophole advocated

Another study purporting that lower corporation tax leads to higher tax revenues. Problematic as 'other things' are not equal. Cause and effect also not proven. And above all - if author favors even lower (17%?) rate, why should working people be taxed at much higher rates? The lower Corp Tax gets the more it becomes a tax shelter for the Rich. Capital Gains are not taxed on a current basis - no wonder the trend to ever-increasing inequality is intact.
WhyCorporationTaxCutsWork.pdf

Monday, 1 May 2017

Steven Mnuchin: On the components for creating economic growth

Guess Inequality would not be high on his list of arguments?
Steven Mnuchin: On the components for creating economic growth

Steve Wynn: Becoming a Real Estate and Casino Mogul

Hero Worship at the Altar of Capitalism! Readers should think they all can become another 'Mogul' - problem is the model does not work for everybody, the system basically is a feudal model where the many serve the few at the top. Capitalism is the right system, but it needs a basic rethink!
Steve Wynn: Becoming a Real Estate and Casino Mogul

Harvard Business School: positively dangerous!

Harvard promotes a sort of bastardised Capitalism. It takes the existing system for gospel truth and basically just teaches students how to press the last drop of blood out of consumers and employees - all for the greater good of a tiny (and shrinking) minority of Super Rich. No new ideas apart from the relentless drill in search of more 'efficiencies' (profits to you and me).
lHow Harvard Business School Has Reshaped American Capitalism - The New York Times

Sunday, 30 April 2017

Piketty theory not only explanation of Inequality

False triumphalism implied by headline! As the Rich own or control most if not all the media they are hanging on to any bit of 'evidence' that might justify extremes of income and wealth inequality. Of course, Piketty's theory is not the only explanation of inequality, it might not be scientific truth but it is one strand of thought that helps to explain inequality - among many others, such as legal structure of corporations, inheritance tax levels, copyright laws etc.
Sunday Times Rich List 2017: Richest people in Britain data vs Piketty theory - Business Insider

Saturday, 29 April 2017

Alphabet's chairman charged Co. $1.9 million for use of private planes

Gravediggers of Capitalism and Democracy are at work, the true "Deplorables". Anti-trust is asleep while Net Quasi Monopolies are free to harvest our cash.
Alphabet's chairman charged the company $1.9 million for use of private planes last year

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

City of London Execs: Read my Blog!

No need to panic about Brexit! I gave the verdict more than one year ago!
Brexit may not stop the EU having control over the City

Canada is launching an experiment that will give 4,000 people free money until 2020

Experiment is meaningless, participants may well be super-motivated to show that it works (for them) and try to be good members of society by pursuing paid work.
Canada is launching an experiment that will give 4,000 people free money until 2020

Friday, 21 April 2017

Population Growth - main Challenge to Future of Mankind

There may be some truth to it - Greece could probably grow out of its debt problem if population growth accelerates. But all-too-often analysts and commentators (and the politicians all over the world) see population growth as a positive. But stopping and reversing it would be the best way to stop environmental degradation!
Greeks Need To Start Having Babies Again Or Face Financial Oblivion

Population Growth often overlooked factor

The country had a population of 22 Million in 1945, latest estimate is for 2015 is 121 Million (!!), is it any surprise that many/most Developing countries are in a mess, and it is getting worse? All economic plans, reforms etc are fruitless endeavors if face of this human flood. Just imagine Switzerland with 30 Million people, of France with 210 Million!
Mexico’s Economy Is Being Plundered Dry | naked capitalism

Thursday, 20 April 2017

SURVEY: 82% of investors think more firms will set up in Europe because of Brexit

Nothing to worry about, if anything positive for UK as its firms will have to set their eyes on export markets in a more pro-active manner. Free of the cost of EU membership (mostly socialist redistribution to the unworthy) and regulation Britain should do well. Being ruled by one government rather than a committee of 27 should speed up decision making.
SURVEY: 82% of investors think more firms will set up in Europe because of Brexit

Monday, 10 April 2017

Ray Dalio of Bridgewater on human infrastructure

Well, it is ironic, but he is part of the problem, maybe even the solution. He and the like of him are sucking up the energy and the resources of the country, $1.4 billion, nice piece of change, and what did he do for it? Use the rules of the game to his advantage.
Ray Dalio of Bridgewater on human infrastructure - Business Insider

Friday, 7 April 2017

Time to ignore ridiculous #USA sanctions

Let the corrupt US politicians play their little sanction games, but the restt of the World should have the backbone to call their bluff, ignore them!

Clipping Iran's Wings - Winners & Losers From Congress' New Sanctions

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Friday, 31 March 2017

Amazon's Bezos on way to richest Man on Earth?

No surprise if AntiTrust regulators are asleep at the wheel. Separation of own-account trading and platform for third parties or you create a Monster Monopoly!
http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story.asp?guid=%7B5550BF6C-154E-11E7-BCC7-456FC1EDA05D%7D&siteid=rss&rss=1

Apple sends warning to banks with Australian mobile payments decision

Time to get tough with the (mostly) American Oligopolies (that try to become de-facto monopolies). If Apple sells a phone it should not be allowed to control the content. In the case of payment systems there should in any case a requirement to make them open to all. There is only one telephone network for landlines, imagine the Telcos could tell you who you would be allowed to call!
So break up Apple, the USA  trustbusters of the early 19th century knew what they had to do!
Same for Google, Yahoo, Facebook - not control of search history or mixing search function with other lines of business.
Amazon should only be allowed to sell for other businesses or on its own account. Running a platform as well as a business is clearly stifling competition.
Apple sends warning to banks with Australian mobile payments decision

Monday, 27 March 2017

Pension at Center of next Crisis

The idea that the average person should be wholly/predominately responsible to save for his/her retirement is laughable. It may appeal to doctrinaire free market advocates and it certainly appeals to the providers of the many 'products' that are supposed to provide for a care-free retirement.

But much better for the state to provide a sufficient pension. Longevity and investment risks are truly shared, between all citizens and all generations. Costs are very low - no pass the parcel investment games, no expensive admin (everyone gets the same pension, higher rate taxpayers give back more than those in a low tax bracket or not liable to any income tax). This is to some extent akin to the currently debated 'Guaranteed basic income', but only applied to those already retired.

Anyone who has tried to manage his own investment portfolio will understand how difficult investing is. Even so-called professionals time and again mess up, highly acclaimed 'Masters of the Universe' in the Hedge Fund industry often produce lamentable investment returns. So pushing the masses into the investment game means they are supposed to do the equivalent of Brain Surgery on themselves.

By all means encourage people to save, but this part of their retirement provision should not benefit from overly generous tax benefits (that mostly flow to those already enjoying high incomes) and also be free from all other regulatory and bureaucratic restrictions. These additional nest-eggs can help to provide a more comfortable old age than the universal state pension will be able to provide.

48% of Americans saving for retirement are pretty sure they have no idea what they are doing (Business Insider)
Report on the Economic Well-Being of U.S. Households in 2015 (Federal Reserve)
Your Pension Will Be At The Center Of America's Next Financial Crisis

EU recommends suspending drugs tested by Indian firm

The shady side of Globalization! And why are call centres located abroad permitted by regulators?
EU recommends suspending hundreds of drugs tested by Indian firm

China: Great Internet Firewall Is a Trade Barrier

Why do we pussy-foot with Communist China? Protectionist policy eats our lunch, hollows out technical advantage, pushes ordinary workers into penury.
The Great Firewall Is a Trade Barrier - Bloomberg View

Saturday, 25 March 2017

Real Inflation out of control!

You cannot eat your mobile phone or laptop! Inept Central Banks and Politicians bleed us dry!
Cost of living data on essential household items, property, fuel, insurance - Business Insider

Friday, 24 March 2017

Pension Crisis Too Big for Markets to Ignore

The idea that the average person should be wholly/predominately responsible to save for his/her retirement is laughable. It may appeal to doctrinaire free market advocates and it certainly appeals to the providers of the many 'products' that are supposed to provide for a care-free retirement.
But much better for the state to provide a sufficient pension. Longevity and investment risks are truly shared, between all citizens and all generations. Costs are very low - no pass the parcel investment games, no expensive admin (everyone gets the same pension, higher rate taxpayers give back more than those in a low tax bracket or not liable to any income tax). This is to some extent akin to the currently debated 'Guaranteed basic income', but only applied to those already retired.

Anyone who has tried to manage his own investment portfolio will understand how difficult investing is. Even so-called professionals time and again mess up, highly acclaimed 'Masters of the Universe' in the Hedge Fund industry often produce lamentable investment returns. So pushing the masses into the investment game means they are supposed to do the equivalent of Brain Surgery on themselves.

By all means encourage people to save, but this part of their retirement provision should not benefit from overly generous tax benefits (that mostly flow to those already enjoying high incomes) and also be free from all other regulatory and bureaucratic restrictions. These additional nest-eggs can help to provide a more comfortable old age than the universal state pension will be able to provide.

48% of Americans saving for retirement are pretty sure they have no idea what they are doing (Business Insider)

Report on the Economic Well-Being of U.S. Households in 2015
(Federal Reserve)

Pension Crisis Too Big for Markets to Ignore

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Frankfurt is in 'pole position' in the Brexit jobs race

Been there dozens of times for business, nice people, but if anyone believes it will take over as THE major financial center I have a bridge to sell....

Frankfurt is in 'pole position' in the Brexit jobs race

How to Protect Yourself from the Looming Pension Crisis

This crisis is man-made, due to poor policies adopted on the basis of flawed ideologies. Private provision may fulfill a useful purpose allowing savers to have a more comfortable retirement. The basic pension, however, should be provided by a simple-to-run State Pension. Not means-tested, identical for all, ending all tax subsidies (only helping the better-off) for private pensions can finance a sufficient basic protection.
How to Protect Yourself from the Looming Pension Crisis

Using The Chai Latte As Replacement For The Big Mac Index

These indices are for amusement only! Most people in the less-affluent countries can only dream of buying a Big Mac or visiting Starbucks which sells 5 cents of coffee for 4 or 5 dollars

Using The Chai Latte As Replacement For The Big Mac Index

Monday, 20 March 2017

Governments Have Put the ECB in a Bind

Wrong way round! ECB allows Governments to delay or abandon any structural reforms by bailing them out, keeping rates at absurd levels and effectively stealing from Savers - most of them low or middle income citizens that benefit little from the asset bubble the Central Banks create.
Governments Have Put the ECB in a Bind

Lobster-crazy China sets record for US crustacean imports

Given the size of population they might vacuum clean the World's oceans, there needs to be a limit on fishing in the 'open oceans', 3, 10, 200 mile limits are just not enough
Lobster-crazy China sets record for US crustacean imports

Tax burden on the wealthy has trebled since the 1970s

Meaningless statistic, the wealthy also increased their share of wealth, income, so only logical their share 'burden' goes up, how about Philip Green's Monaco shifting of wealth?
Tax burden on the wealthy has trebled since the 1970s, Telegraph analysis shows

Thursday, 16 March 2017

The Dystopian Future of Price Discrimination

Time for our Solons to stamp out any incipient abuses. Start with Google - ban collecting search history, ban selling slots on search results, then Amazon - break up the business, own sales and agency sales, Apple - divest from content sales
The Dystopian Future of Price Discrimination - Bloomberg ViewThe Dystopian Future of Price Discrimination - Bloomberg View

Janet Yellen: Micromanagement taken to extreme

Maybe the next step is - weekly data and adjusting Fed action accordingly? O tempora! where has intellectual honesty gone?
Janet Yellen says economic data hasn't notably strengthened - Business Insider

Friday, 10 March 2017

Calafia Beach Pundit: Richer than ever

These stats are for entertainment more than serious discourse. Say we trade all shares suddenly at twice their present worth? and do the same with Real Estate? Are we really twice as 'rich'? It is all hot air, some win at the expense of others

Calafia Beach Pundit: Richer than ever

Wednesday, 4 January 2017

Confused Thinking on Pensions

Who wants to argue with mighty Wall Street Journal or Bloomberg? These Media giants dominate public discourse but I still want to put pen to paper with my five cents of wisdom:

Quo usque tandem?

The (endless) debate about pension reform would benefit if one aspect would get sufficient consideration: which of the three possible methods (DB,DC or State Pension) is CHEAPER to run? While DB providers are usually financially astute corporations - at least in most cases - and able to select providers that give decent value and performance the great unwashed public that gets shunted into Defined Contribution Schemes is easy prey for expensive providers that often do not give good performance to add insult to injury.

If you expect ordinary citizens that are not trained in financial matters to select providers and/or decide matters of asset allocation they have as much chance to get it right as if they are expected to do brain surgery on themselves..

State Pension systems should be simple to run. One large computer, a few details about each individual. No difference in benefits - the better off or those more thrifty can make additional savings to pay for the lifestyle they desire to have in retirement. When the day arrives the system will start sending out the pension, no need for lengthy and expensive verification. 0.01% should be enough to run the system - compared to fees on fees on fees for DC, and only marginally less for DB schemes.

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2017-01-03/the-401-k-problem-we-refuse-to-solve