Breakingviews

 
Going from a U.S. government job to the private sector raises conflicts, as shown by events at Goldman. And a banker’s possible role at the Treasury is under fire. Such moves warrant clear rules, but cross-fertilization is valuable. It would be a shame to make it too hard to do.

London gets closer to harsh bonus cap reality

An adviser to the European Court of Justice has quashed UK legal arguments contesting EU pay limits. A ruling against Britain is now more likely next spring. Base salaries will rise, and industry pay could remain high. It’s a blow to the BoE, but the banks brought it on themselves.

China great wall of content could be more than fad

Smartphone maker Xiaomi and e-commerce giant Alibaba are stretching their business models by investing in online TV programming. If viewers pay up content might turn fickle ad revenues and one-off sales of hardware into predictable revenue streams.

Activist row bigger than Keystone for TransCanada

A sparring match with a dissident investor may be more important than the fate of the $35 bln Canadian group’s tar sands pipeline. Bay Street has welcomed activists, and the regulatory environment is favorable. But for now, TransCanada appears to have shareholders on its side.

Uber is one startup that needs to grow up fast

The taxi app’s disregard for rules has spurred it toward a $30 bln valuation. But execs who threaten to “dig up dirt” on critics, employ unsavory tactics against rivals and post stats on clients’ one-night stands pose an existential risk. Such laddishness is bad for business.

Deutsche's CoCo buyers are not totally irrational

Bank debt that turns into equity when shares are losing value hardly sounds appealing, but the German lender has sold a $1.5 bln tranche of it at a relatively low spread. Why? There’s a 7.5 pct yield, and ECB bond-buying creates scarcity while EU stress tests give comfort.

How to make Japan's tax timetable more credible

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is seeking a fresh political mandate to delay next year’s planned increase in the sales tax by 18 months. But fragile demand means investors will be sceptical of the new schedule. A better strategy would be to link the tax hike to growth in real wages.