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Archive for 6. Oktober 2017

How Britain Lost Its Cool

Posted by hkarner - 6. Oktober 2017

Mark Leonard is Director of the European Council on Foreign Relations.

In the past 20 years, the UK and Germany have switched positions, with the latter now representing openness while the former has come to embody backward-looking nationalism. But there is no reason to believe that the two countries won’t swap places again.

BERLIN – The recent meeting between German Chancellor Angela Merkel and British Prime Minister Theresa May in the Estonian capital of Tallinn was a portrait in contrasts. Merkel has pursued openness and internationalism, and leads a country with a world-beating industrial base and strong trade ties. May talks more about the past than the future, and has disparaged “citizens of the world” while claiming to defend her country’s confused national identity.  Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »


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The Catalan Question and the Future of Europe

Posted by hkarner - 6. Oktober 2017

By Tom Holland, Gavekal Research
October 2, 2017, Mauldin Outside the Box

Yesterday the world was treated to the unedifying sight of the national police of a democratic state using violence in an attempt to prevent peaceful crowds of citizens from voting. If any investors still believed that the electoral defeat of the far right earlier this year in the Netherlands and the election of Emmanuel Macron in France had resolved the structural forces working to fragment the European Union, yesterday’s footage from the unofficial independence referendum in Catalonia will surely have disabused them.

Although Catalan independence in any meaningful sense remains highly unlikely in the near term, Madrid’s clumsy response to Sunday’s vote guarantees that the secessionist sore will continue to fester. With a lively cyclical upswing under way in the eurozone, that may not bother investors too much in the near term. However, the weekend’s events in Spain underline how neither Europe’s national governments nor its supranational institutions have yet to offer a workable formula to counteract the political forces working to drive the EU apart. That failure threatens to add considerably to the risk premium on European assets when the next cyclical downswing inevitably sets in. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The European Union’s Neoliberal Dilemma

Posted by hkarner - 6. Oktober 2017

Date: 05-10-2017
Source: The Wall Street Journal By Simon Nixon

The free flow of capital and people seemed to deliver only winners until the economic crisis revealed competition’s downside in many countries

Those who say the European Union is a neoliberal plot are, of course, largely right. Any single market that allows free movement of capital and people by its very nature pits country against country, region against region and town against town in a competition to attract investment and productive people. The rewards flow to those that offer the best business environment, high-quality infrastructure and the right mix of skills. Those that get it wrong face stagnation or decline.

Until the global financial crisis, the EU’s free movement of capital and people appeared to deliver only winners. Countries in Northern and Western Europe that had plenty of capital benefited from the flow of people to plug gaps in their growing job markets, boosting growth and living standards. And countries in Eastern Europe that had large pools of low-wage workers benefited from the free movement of capital as companies looked to outsource manufacturing. Meanwhile, those countries, primarily in Southern Europe, that weren’t particularly attractive to people or corporate capital were at least able to tap booming financial markets to finance lavish government spending. The result was rising and converging living standards across the EU. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Manias, panics and Initial Coin Offerings

Posted by hkarner - 6. Oktober 2017

Date: 05-10-2017
Source: The Economist: Free exchange

Crypto-coin mania illustrates the crazy and not-so-crazy sides of bubbles

EVERY market mania reaches a point when pitches to would-be investors enter the realm of the surreal. So it goes for “initial coin offerings”, or ICOs. A new one by a firm called POW invites Facebook users to claim tokens for nothing; when they later become convertible into other tokens, the first to take advantage of the offer could “become worth $124bn…making them the richest person on Earth”, the blurb says. Not a bad return for no money invested and no risk borne. However bizarre, bubbles are hard to resist: no one wants to be the only one of their friends left out. They can also be financially ruinous. But gambling on a craze, even a highly dubious one, can be about more than blind greed. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The proliferation of high-net-worth individuals

Posted by hkarner - 6. Oktober 2017

Date: 05-10-2017
Source: The Economist

The highest proportion is concentrated in the Asia-Pacific region

The global number of high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs) grew by 7.5% to 16.5m last year, according to the 2017 World Wealth Report by Capgemini, a consulting firm.

HNWI have at least $1m in investable assets, excluding their main home, its contents and collectable items.

Total HNWI wealth came to $63.5trn last year, with the highest proportion concentrated in the Asia-Pacific region.

The expansion of wealth in the Asian-Pacific region slowed to 8.2% year-on-year though, partly owing to declines in the performance of stockmarkets in China and Japan.

For global HNWI wealth to reach over $100trn by 2025, Asian wealth (the biggest source of new future growth) will need to increase by about 9.4% a year.

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