The Great Debate UK

from The Great Debate:

Divorce marked to market

MARKETS-GLOBAL /-- Margaret Doyle is a Reuters columnist. The opinions expressed are her own --

The Myerson divorce case in Britain makes compelling reading, as all rich bust-ups do. Regardless of whether the judges make Ingrid Myerson hand back 3.2 million pounds of her 11.1 million pound payout to compensate for the decline in her ex-husband's shares, she is a lucky woman.

Thanks to her divorce last year from fund manager Bryan who, as one half of Active Value Advisers, was the scourge of corporate UK, she is independently wealthy. Had the marriage survived, she would probably be -- like him -- worthless.

The lesson from the Myerson divorce is that wives who cede control of the family finances to their rich husbands will have to accept that marriage may be for poorer as well as for richer. If they do not want to risk their family's wealth being wiped out, they will have to take an interest in it.

is a sculptor, and presumably claims as little financial nous as most artists. But this model of marriage -- where one party, usually the husband, makes the money and all the financial decisions -- remains surprisingly common among the rich. It is easy to see why.