Breakingviews

Global water woes mix with trickle of good news

March 23, 2015

The planet faces a 40 pct H2O deficit by 2030 as rising populations require more food and energy. Droughts in Sao Paulo and California may become harbingers of doom. But progress on everything from data to usage to business awareness to international agreements offers some hope.

Elliott emits ray of pragmatism in Argentina feud

March 23, 2015

The hedge fund and a U.S. judge say Citi can process two of the country’s bond payments, despite a court-ordered block. It’s a concession to cover the bank’s back, not a broader shift in holdout creditors’ intractable spat with Argentina. But it may qualify as progress.

Review: The lucrative and controversial Blair Inc

March 20, 2015

Tony Blair has made a small fortune after stepping down as UK prime minister, advising illiberal leaders from Kuwait to Kazakhstan. A timely new book details his awkward juggling of paid and non-profit work. Blair is an extreme example of a wider challenge to politics.

M&A world could teach niche U.S. colleges

March 16, 2015

The collapse of liberal arts enclave Sweet Briar is bad news for cash-strapped schools across the country. Sagging enrollment has pushed some institutions to offer debt-shy students big discounts on tuition. But that risks a spiral. Merging may be one way to ease the pressure.

Silicon Valley sexism case tests new M&M color

March 11, 2015

Venture capitalists at Kleiner Perkins didn’t slip the candy down blouses, behavior that cost one tech law firm big bucks in 1994. But they’re accused of unfairly blocking a woman’s rise. It’s a subtler but more toxic flavor of discrimination that suggests how little has changed.

Hugo Dixon: Greece has no good Plan Bs

By Hugo Dixon
March 9, 2015

Defaulting on its debts and quitting the euro would be a disaster. So would imposing capital controls, while defaulting and staying in the single currency. Athens has no rational course of action apart from working with its creditors to vigorously reform its economy.

Turkey’s central bank is in a very tough spot

By Edward Hadas
March 9, 2015

Rate-setters are under pressure from President Erdogan to ease, despite a big trade deficit, high inflation and a weakening lira. The central bank is trying to square the circle, including by cutting forex deposit rates. It could all get much worse, if Erdogan pushes too hard.

Rob Cox: Silicon Valley’s boom-boom room moment

March 3, 2015

These days the talk of the geek enclave isn’t the latest Mary Meeker report or mega-IPO but complex legal complaints alleging naughty behavior by leading venture capitalists. The lawsuits are the latest reminder that the tech industry’s moral exceptionalism is undeserved.

India’s infrastructure push could be envy of West

March 2, 2015

The government has pushed back its deficit reduction target in order to boost spending on roads, rail and power. New Delhi is now unmistakably pursuing a public investment-led growth strategy. It’s an opportunity that rich nations, which can borrow far more cheaply, are missing.

U.S. student loans could need $500 bln bailout

February 27, 2015

Borrowing for education has soared over the past decade, ballooning to $1.2 trln and growing far faster than GDP. With serious delinquencies at 11 pct and Washington on the hook, there’s a mess in the making. A Breakingviews calculator shows how big Uncle Sam’s exposure could get.