Uncategorized

Debate concentrates the mind. It is easy to dismiss opinions you disagree with from the privacy of your own living room. Debating articulate exponents of contrary views is another matter – even more so when the discussion takes place in front of a large audience. I found myself in the position of having to sharpen […]

This is the main text of my recent Fund Strategy cover story on behavioral finance. For a related box see below. Insights into investment behaviour sometimes come from unexpected directions. Daniel Kahneman, who won the Nobel prize for economics in 2002 for his work on behavioural finance, has described what for him was a eureka […]

This box was part of my recent Fund Strategy cover story on behavioural finance. Although behavioural finance owed much to modern psychology it also has other antecedents. Often they run parallel to discussions about irrational crowd behaviour. In the 1970s, at about the same time as Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky were starting to develop […]

This is my column for the July issue of Fund Strategy. Those who work in investment are more guilty than most of being too ready to accept the authority of numbers. Words can be doubted but numbers are often seen as virtually sacrosanct. Indeed, financial news often revolves around numbers. An index is down by […]

Given the unpopularity of those who work in financial services it was perhaps appropriate that there was a constant hissing sound in the background. Only this time around the source of the hissing, at least in the main, was a noisy air pump rather than the audience. The venue was the Bowler Hat – a […]

An audio recording of last week’s spiked debate on consumerism, with me on the panel, is now available online. Click here.

I will be participating in a debate on the Global 10 billion – something to celebrate? at the Mantownhuman summer in London at 12.30am on 16 July. The other panelists will be Danny Dorling (a professor of geography at Oxford university) and Philippe Legrain (the author of Immigrants: your country needs them).

The emergence of London as a centre for trading in the Chinese currency points to both the strengths and weaknesses of the British economy. It is certainly a coup for London that the Chinese authorities have agreed to launch direct trading between the renminbi and the pound on the capital’s foreign exchange market. This will build […]

Market reactions to the decision by the European Central Bank to reduce interest rates and introduce additional unconventional monetary measures can be broadly divided into two: those who welcomed the moves and those who welcomed them but said they were insufficient. Both sides misconstrue the nature of the eurozone’s economic problems and so cannot offer […]

I will be participating in a spiked debate on celebrating consumer choice at the Grand Committee Room, Westminster Hall, London on the evening of Monday 23 June. The other panelists are Julian Baggini (philosopher and author), Helen Dickinson (director general of the British Retail Consortium) and Harry Wallop (journalist and broadcaster).