U.S. Editor, Commentary
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Oct 17, 2013
via Breakingviews

When will US stop acting like a fat spoiled brat?

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By Rob Cox

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Imagine future historians looking back at the 113th Congress of the United States. They will not judge it kindly. One day when the dollar is no longer the currency of choice for financial transactions around the world, the fictional chroniclers will ask, perhaps as Romans did in the fifth century: how did a nation that had so much going for it manage to squander everything?

Oct 11, 2013
via Breakingviews

Pandit gone but not forgotten at Citigroup

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By Rob Cox and Antony Currie
The authors are Reuters Breakingviews columnists. The opinions expressed are their own.

Mike Corbat is approaching his first anniversary as chief executive of Citigroup. Chairman Mike O’Neill installed him after organizing a putsch to oust then-CEO Vikram Pandit. The new boss has accelerated some cost cuts and clarified strategy around the edges, but the broad direction is still Pandit’s. Either way, it is serving shareholders well.

Oct 9, 2013
via Breakingviews

Wall Street lets itself go for dance rave IPO

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By Rob Cox
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Investors shelled out $260 million to get past the velvet ropes and into the debut of SFX Entertainment, Robert Sillerman’s electronic dance music promotion roll-up that priced at $13 a share on Tuesday only to trade down sharply the next morning. The best explanation for Wall Street’s over-enthusiasm may be the “my grandson likes that Skrillex guy” school of stock investing.

Oct 2, 2013
via Breakingviews

An Abenomics lesson on politics for Uncle Sam

By Rob Cox
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Two years ago, there was no gloomier place than Japan. The country was recovering from the horrific devastation of the Fukushima earthquake and tsunami. Fearful of radiation poisoning, Tokyoites were purchasing Geiger counters and eschewing vegetables. The government was a thicket of finger-pointing, evasion and paralysis.

Sep 25, 2013
via The Great Debate

Only Generation Lockdown can resolve America’s gun debate

On the website of the Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus there is a statistic worth knowing if you live in Ohio. About 1,100 residents of the Buckeye State lose their lives at the trigger of a firearm every year. That includes homicides, accidental shootings and suicides.

It’s also a number that you’d think would be worth knowing if you represented the great state of Ohio in Congress. Yet until April it was not a figure that rolled off the tongue of Senator Rob Portman. Far more astonishing than Portman’s ignorance of the number of his constituents killed by guns every year are the circumstances in which this gap in his education was filled. Portman didn’t hear it from the hospital, a newspaper or cable news. He learned it from a 13-year-old boy named James Barden.

Sep 23, 2013
via Breakingviews

BlackBerry washout leaves a white-collar stain

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By Rob Cox
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

The dawn of the new millennium brought a gadget like no other. More than a cellphone, the BlackBerry offered users something novel in the blossoming age of email: liberation from the desk. This made it the device of choice for a rich and mobile class, eventually spawning an aspirational market beyond Wall Street. Fittingly, BlackBerry’s demise is occurring with the device as little more than a mark of white-collar servitude.

Sep 19, 2013
via Breakingviews

JPMorgan pays price for embarrassing regulators

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By Rob Cox and Antony Currie
The authors are Reuters Breakingviews columnists. The opinions expressed are their own.

The first rule in banking, even before know thy customer, is never aggravate your regulator. JPMorgan is usefully illustrating the importance of this dictum by paying through the nose for embarrassing the many agencies charged with overseeing the largest U.S. bank by assets. Though the many fines the firm is paying are unlikely to cost Chief Executive Jamie Dimon his job, they provide a useful lesson in the importance of hubris management.

Sep 18, 2013
via The Great Debate

Starbucks policy shift is small win for gun safety, big one for economic boycotts

Starbucks’ decision this week to ask customers to leave their guns at the door will please many of its loyal customers. Gun safety advocates are also claiming the move as a major victory and are promising to move on to other retailers that allow guns in their outlets. Nobody, however, should be as charged up as Elliot Fineman.

Ever since his son Michael was randomly murdered seven years ago by a paranoid schizophrenic while dining with his wife in a San Diego restaurant, Fineman has been on a crusade urging Americans who favor safe gun laws to make their presence known economically. Fineman, who founded the National Gun Victims Action Council, contends that political pressure alone will not shift the debate in favor of measures like universal background checks. There must be an economic impact as well.

Sep 13, 2013

After two-decade hiatus, a matured Replacements return to rock

NEW YORK, Sept 13 (Reuters) – The velvet curtain had yet to
open at the Ritz night club in New York’s East Village when the
opening riff of Aerosmith’s “Walk This Way” thundered over the
rowdy crowd.

Paul Westerberg emerged stage right with a guitar strapped
around him before the curtain parted, and the Replacements, long
on critical acclaim but without great commercial success, played
what punk rock cognoscenti regard as one of the greatest
concerts ever.

Sep 13, 2013
via Breakingviews

Review: “Money for Nothing” sets crisis-film high

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By Rob Cox
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

The press literature for “Money for Nothing,” a new documentary about the Federal Reserve, says director Jim Bruce partly funded the movie by betting against financial stocks during the crisis of 2008. That’s clever marketing. Judging by the film’s astute analysis of the past century of U.S. monetary policy, it’s also believable.

    • About Rob

      "Rob Cox helped establish Breakingviews in 2000 in London. From 2004 he spearheaded the firm's expansion in the United States and edited its American edition, including the daily Breakingviews columns in the New York Times and Wall Street Journal. Rob has worked as a financial journalist in London, Milan, New York, Washington, Chicago and Tokyo. Rob graduated from Columbia University’s Journalism School and the University of Vermont. Follow Rob on Twitter @rob1cox"
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