Breakingviews

Ballmer’s exit value is now Nadella’s to preserve

August 20, 2014

Microsoft’s market capitalization grew by over $100 bln from the day about a year ago the longtime CEO said he would resign to Tuesday, when he left the board. With his predecessor fading from the picture, maintaining the momentum is now firmly in new boss Satya Nadella’s hands.

Alibaba’s slow unveiling shows good and bad sides

June 17, 2014

The e-commerce giant has revealed more details ahead of its upcoming IPO. The growing importance of commission revenue is positive. But the rapid shift to mobile transactions is squeezing margins. The quartet of non-executive directors is unlikely to win over governance sceptics.

Three ways for FIFA to score on governance

June 6, 2014

Ugly allegations of corruption have caught soccer’s governing body offside. FIFA’s setup has improved lately but its congress is unrepresentative, its executive committee is too large, and its president is too powerful. The beautiful game should shoot for a hat-trick of reforms.

Alibaba creative governance should come at a cost

October 22, 2013

New York says the Chinese e-commerce group could list with a structure that lets insiders nominate directors. Hong Kong regulators disagreed. The debate is really about the value of shareholder democracy. Investors should be wary of giving up their rights cheaply.

An Abenomics lesson on politics for Uncle Sam

October 2, 2013

While dysfunction has shut Washington, Japan pushed ahead with a 60 pct consumption tax hike and $51 bln stimulus. What's startling about the contrast is that Japan was the paralyzed one two years ago. Staring down the barrel of a demographic gun concentrates the political mind.

Bank of England reaches limits of independence

November 8, 2011

The Bank of England is under the microscope. A UK parliamentary committee has called for the central bank to be better governed and more accountable.

Glencore chair will determine governance discount

March 29, 2011

Glencore has everything in place for a possible record-breaking London float. Everything, that is, apart from an independent chairman.