Breakingviews

Sanctions on Russia will cost less than inaction

By Pierre Briancon
April 17, 2014

European leaders blame Russia for the takeover of Ukrainian cities by armed separatists. Yet they’re refraining from further sanctions because it’s not a full-blown invasion. The wavering and waiting will only increase the final price to be paid for Vladimir Putin’s actions.

Asian bond sizzle is a bet on deflationary fizzle

April 11, 2014

Investors have lapped up $50 billion in Asian debt so far this year, roughly the same as in 2013. They’re not ignoring Fed tapering, political tension and the emerging market slowdown. Rather, they are locking mediocre yields and hoping global deflation will prove them right.

Time to bust China’s “omniscient regulator” myth

April 10, 2014

The country’s dueling financial watchdogs are undeniably smart. But as shadow banking runs amok, they have limited tools to fight problems they didn’t create. Some reforms are beyond their power, others are tied up in red tape. It undermines the theory that China is crisis-proof.

Japan index: Economy is ready to take on tax hike

April 10, 2014

The Breakingviews Abenomics Index climbed to a six-year high in February, suggesting the economy has enough strength to withstand this month’s sales tax increase. Wages and inflation expectations firmed up, while hopes of further monetary easing pushed bond yields lower.

Russia would pay steep price for Ukraine invasion

By Pierre Briancon
April 8, 2014

The pro-Russian agitation in eastern Ukraine has rekindled fears of an intervention from Moscow. But even if Vladimir Putin is tempted, the economic implications will hopefully bring second thoughts. Any Russian invasion would spur costly sanctions and massive capital flight.

Modi win is blow for Tesco, good for investors

April 8, 2014

The Indian opposition leader’s party has vowed to ban foreign retailers. With that exception, its manifesto strikes the right notes on the economy. If Narendra Modi does become prime minister, shareholders will expect a major improvement in the country’s investment climate.

BBC ersatz trader has serious markets message

By Christopher Swann
September 29, 2011

Though Rastani's infamy will be short-lived, he may have done the public a favor during his fifteen minutes.

Euro-recession, not rebellion, is what boxes UK in

October 26, 2011

An E.U. protest vote by members of his own party has knocked the UK prime minister. For the moment, the Conservative party rebellion is largely symbolic. But it could be the thin end of the wedge. David Cameron, just like Margaret Thatcher before him, risks being undermined by his party's euro-divisions.

Roman politics could gum Europe up

By Hugo Dixon
October 31, 2011

The euro’s future hangs on Italy – and Italy’s future hangs on its politics. The best way forward would be a grand coalition replacing Berlusconi’s discredited government. But after the PM’s latest Houdini act, that doesn’t seem likely and other scenarios aren’t as attractive.

Insider trading another reason to Occupy Congress

November 14, 2011

Forget Wall Street for a bit. Politicians, especially those keen on light regulation, did much to create the financial crisis. Fresh news of U.S. lawmakers trading on inside information is further reason for mistrust. Public ire could usefully target this big problem.