Breakingviews

Brexit index: The “Out” risk is real

February 1, 2016

Britons are warming to the idea of Britain leaving the European Union, says a new Breakingviews Brexit index. It crunches nine different metrics to show the “Out” camp is gaining ground. The inputs include asylum applications, consumer confidence – and Daily Mail front pages.

Ireland has limited shelter against Brexit storm

January 26, 2016

The Irish state is right to fret about a UK exit from the EU. It could knock 20 pct off trade between the two countries and hit Ireland’s economic recovery. Rebranding Dublin as a financial hub would help – but requires Germany to beef up the euro zone’s half-done banking union.

VW plea from Brussels confuses cause and effect

January 20, 2016

EU officials are urging the German carmaker to compensate Europeans like U.S drivers. VW’s two-tier scandal response, however, simply reflects the weaker emissions regime put in place by diesel-loving policymakers. Stricter standards will warrant tougher enforcement – next time.

Dixon: EU’s latest challenge – rule of law

By Hugo Dixon
January 18, 2016

The Polish and Greek governments may be flouting the rule of law. This doesn’t just undermine democracy: it is bad for investment. Brussels is in a quandary. It doesn’t want to pick quarrels. But if it turns a blind eye, bad behaviour could spread.

A (fake) bank CEO memo on plans to leave London

December 16, 2015

After the referendum passed on Britain leaving the EU, we will be migrating some operations to centers of excellence in Madrid, Frankfurt and Gdynia. We’ve spent $50 mln preparing for this go-forward possibility. The message to clients: business continues as normal.

Dixon: UK’s EU bind not quite a blind alley

By Hugo Dixon
December 14, 2015

Prime Minister David Cameron has boxed himself in by asking the EU to let him deny “in-work” benefits to European migrants. Though other countries almost certainly won’t agree to this, there may be ways out of the box. Hopefully one will work. Otherwise, the UK could quit the EU.

Heathrow offers useful dry run for Brexit debate

December 11, 2015

David Cameron has deferred a decision on airport development around London. One business group called the move “gutless”. But expansionists haven’t yet convinced the populists. As with the UK’s looming poll on EU membership, it will take more than economics to win over voters.

Tech crunched between clashing U.S.-EU privacy law

November 10, 2015

Facebook got dinged in Belgium for secretly tracking visitors, while Spokeo’s similarly nosy conduct will probably go unpunished in America. Yet in neither case could victims prove they were harmed. The disparate outcomes highlight the need for more uniform data-gathering rules.

Greek bank salvation may still have sting in tail

July 13, 2015

Greece’s lenders are getting another 25 billion euros in bailout recap money. With a deal in place, more ECB crisis loans should also materialise. But the central bank may not provide them today, and a new Greek bail-in regime raises uncertainty for depositors.

UK taxpayers hurt more by EU split than HSBC exit

May 19, 2015

Deutsche Bank and its rivals could move operations out of London if Britons vote to leave the EU. That would dent the main source of UK tax from the financial sector - income tax on bankers. It’s a bigger loss than reduced bank levy receipts from HSBC moving its head office.