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The Great Saudi Oil Deception

Over the last couple of years we have all grown used to stories of financial problems caused by lies, secrecy and general deception. Just using words like Enron, Madoff and derivative ought to be enough to jog the fading memory. But it seems that the world has another such problem to contend with at some… » read more

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As mentioned in my previous post (The Innovation Union Will Require Public And Private Money), I had the role of Moderator this week at an event about Venture Capital held in Brussels by Eureka. The overall aim was to help bring together some members of the Eureka network, EU policy makers and some involved in… » read more

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Next week in Brussels the Eureka Network is holding an event related to Venture Capital in Europe. As such, I thought it might be interesting to abuse my position of Moderator of the event and ask some questions of key speakers about the role that VC can play in innovation policy in the EU. Therefore,… » read more

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Is Ed In Economic Dreamland?

The UK news was dominated a few days ago by New Labour’s leader, Ed Miliband and his first speech of 2011. It’s long, and I don’t propose to comment on it all, but I do propose to look at the element that was considered ‘newsworthy’. The full text of the speech is here. Taken from… » read more

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It was obvious, the Christmas break wasn’t really going to solve the fiscal problems faced by Portugal, Belgium and Spain. It was simply a short postponement to the ongoing calamity. A ceasefire if you will. But here we are, back again. Shots are being fired and the fiscal wheels are sure to fall off soon.… » read more

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ECB or EBC?

The Christmas period had a number of news reports – certainly in the UK press – about the current euro currency problems. There were two main topics that stood out. 1. Estonia joining the euro club. A couple of the stories I saw took that stance that ‘perhaps news of the problems hadn’t reached up… » read more

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These are fascinating times if you watch the goings-on on the internet. I believe that we are seeing the start of a war being waged over the freedom of the web. The benefits that have been brought to us as individuals, corporations, governments and – almost – everybody it seems, by an open internet, are… » read more

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Are Smart Grids Energy 2.0?

Yesterday, as a part of my day job, I interviewed Bob Gilligan here in Brussels. Mr Gilligan works in the United States for GE Energy and was in town to present a Keynote Speech about his particular area of expertise, Smart Grids. Whether we like it or not, these are the gadgets of the future… » read more

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The result was announced around an hour ago and the 2018 World Cup will be hosted by Russia. That is a BIG WIN for Europe!! We should celebrate!! Under the current climate, it seems inconceivable that any of Portugal, Spain or Belgium could have spent the money required to upgrade their infrastructure. How could they… » read more

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In this interview on Huffington Post, there seems to be real trouble ahead for the financial services sector. Wikileaks is set to release a huge amount of documents in 2011 about a large American bank. Reading between the lines, we can probably presume that he means an investment bank. Probably a global one. That narrows… » read more

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I don’t agree with the barbs being thrown – who can? – but I have one simple and rather uncomfortable question… If it weren’t for UKIP, would the Strasbourg sessions of the European Parliament ever make it into the news??? It is just such a shame that we have to see it descend to this.… » read more

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The news from Ireland is that the controversial (in other Member States at least) rate of corporation tax (12.5%) will remain. The BBC reports the full story here. It seems that chasing away the corporations that have moved to the Republic to take advantage of low tax rates isn’t an option. And that makes a… » read more

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So Ireland is taking the bailout money. It may have been inevitable, and if it was, it is better to accept the fact earlier rather than once things have become too late. But still, this is a heavy cost to all involved. As Kevin Doran writes here, this offers an excellent opportunity to other EU… » read more

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Who does this title relate to? Watch and find out!! This video is fabulous! The world of American finances, inflation, the Federal Reserve and Goldman Sachs explained. Funny and informative. [kml_flashembed movie=”http://www.youtube.com/v/PTUY16CkS-k” width=”425″ height=”350″ wmode=”transparent” /]

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We Must Strengthen The Euro

“We must strengthen the euro” were the closing words of Josef Ackermann, CEO of Deutsche Bank, yesterday in Brussels. “Our competition is the big trading blocks”, thinking of the USA, China, etc, “and to compete we need to find European answers”. Minutes later he was backed up by Dr Jorg Asmussen, State Secretary at the… » read more

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Information just published by Eurostat (discussed here) suggests what we all already know. The government finances of the EU are in a right old mess (that is a technical term used in financial circles – other such terms include ‘buggered’ and ‘up s*%t creek without a paddle’). The problem – to my mind at least… » read more

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Its all getting very serious now to my eyes. This story from CNN via the FT, suggests that debt markets are pricing in debt defaults in Greece, Italy and Portugal. The FT has been saying for weeks that Greece will default – it is a matter of when, not if – and it seems that… » read more

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