Alex Brummer on Business

Top women are now leading the world of high finance

By Alex Brummer, November 22, 2013

The departure of Angela Ahrendts from Burberry and Marjorie Scardino from Pearson has left Britain’s FTSE100 boardrooms woefully short of women chief executives.

But in the world of high finance, it is becoming a very different story.

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Stamp of disapproval for Royal Mail bonanza deal

By Alex Brummer, November 7, 2013

The widely criticised Royal Mail flotation of shares has broad significance.

It has reflected an appetite for new equity from private investors in the UK.

Yet, negotiators of the Royal Mail deal are guilty of under-pricing. They have cost the taxpayer in excess of £1 billion as the shares soared to a 50 per cent-plus premium.

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Middle East economy slumps in face of Syrian refugees

By Alex Brummer, November 4, 2013

Hope for economic prosperity in the Middle East and North Africa in the wake of the Arab Spring have been dashed by successive crises in the region.

Global disappointment at the situation was palpable at the annual International Monetary Fund and World Bank meeting in Washington this month.

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‘Mick the Miner’ is back with a multi-million pound bang

By Alex Brummer, October 17, 2013

Mick Davis, the former chief executive of Xstrata, has lost no time getting back into the corporate swim following the takeover of the mining group by its biggest investor Glencore in May.

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Slash business rates to save out high street

By Alex Brummer, September 26, 2013

Outside of Britain’s biggest city centres, the high street is dying on its feet.

Governments, both national and local, do not seem to recognise that we are still a “nation of shopkeepers”. Indeed, the sector comprises around 95,000 firms, uses £326bn of gross assets and borrows £65bn each year.

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Carney leads the way on banking changes

By Alex Brummer, September 13, 2013

New Bank of England governor Mark Carney has made a positive impact on the UK economy.

The Canadian-born banker and chairman of the G20 Financial Stability Board has shifted the focus from inflation to growth.

When I interviewed Carney he made it clear that interest rates would remain at record low levels for ordinary households and smaller businesses.

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A toast to the bosses who deserve high pay

By Alex Brummer, August 30, 2013

Critics of high pay in the boardroom have rounded on the former chief executive of Diageo, Paul Walsh.

Walsh, who led the spirits and beer giant for more than a decade, parted this year with a package of £14.8 m — the larger part of which was represented by bonuses in shares.

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Ocado bid for online supermarket sweep

By Alex Brummer, August 16, 2013

Britain has been a laggard in the the global battle to establish a leading internet company.

Shopping group Ocado, launched by three former executives at Goldman Sachs, is our only player.

But the company’s share prices have been on a roller coaster ride.

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Co-op overhaul could change political view

By Alex Brummer, August 4, 2013

Months after the Co-operative Bank’s financial difficulties were brought to our attention, the actual scale of the damage has been revealed to the public. As well as affecting the Bank, issues are likely to impact the whole Co-operative Group.

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A central element in the road to recovery

By Alex Brummer, July 21, 2013

Before the recession, central bankers were seldom seen and rarely heard.

But now they are taken on by governments to sort out the economic mess.

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