Summit Notebook

from Africa News blog:

Can South Africa grasp Africa’s opportunity?

March 7, 2011

AFRICAINVEST-SUMMIT/GORDHANWhile Africa becomes ever more attractive for local and foreign investors, the biggest danger for its biggest economy is that it fails to seize on the opportunities it has in the changing world, South African Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan told the first Reuters Africa Investment Summit.

CFTC’s Gary Gensler just one of the “Little Monsters”

By Reuters Staff
March 2, 2011

Christopher Doering found there is more to the CFTC chairman than markets.

MUSIC-GRAMMYS/When he’s not scaring Wall Street and big banks to make sure they follow the rules, there’s a chance the head of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission is moonlighting as a “Little Monster.”

Unlikely alliance: Congressman Barney Frank and the Tea Party

March 2, 2011

At first glance it would appear that Congressman Barney Frank and lawmakers backed by the Tea Party movement would have little in common — one is a liberal Democrat, the others are conservative Republicans.

HK Exchange’s Arculli plays it cool

By Rachel Armstrong
March 2, 2011

Spilling a piping cup of hot coffee down yourself in front of a room of journalists seconds before they start firing questions at you isn’t in your standard media training handbook.FINANCE-SUMMIT/
But 72-year-old Hong Kong Exchange Chairman Ronald Arculli, isn’t a man who gets easily ruffled. While the Reuters reporters went off in a frenzy bringing in tissues and mopping down the table, he just sat there keeping his cool,having not got a drop on his crisp white shirt or tie.

Bank regulator Walsh has pragmatic philosophy on financial crisis repeat

March 1, 2011

John Walsh has spent many years in Washington — having worked at the Senate Banking Committee, the Treasury Department, and now as  acting Comptroller of the Currency — and has a bit of perspective on government reaction to crises over the years.

from Blogs Dashboard:

When is a threat not a threat?

By Reuters Staff
March 1, 2011

By Kirstin Ridley

British bankers are not threatening to head for the Swiss hills. But that doesn’t mean they won’t pack their bags. So says Angela Knight, the head of the British Bankers Association.
Knight told the Reuters Future Face of Finance Summit that if British-based banks such as HSBC, Barclays and Standard Chartered consider whether to keep headquarters in London – given the banker bashing, punitive taxation and pay restrictions imposed here -- that is merely a fact.

Senator Reed sees need for speed to chase bad guys

By Reuters Staff
March 1, 2011

Ann Saphir takes a look at Senator Jack Reed’s comments on cars and trading.

So how plugged in is the SEC chair? (technologically speaking)

March 1, 2011

Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Mary Schapiro says her agency has its work cut out to compete with the massive amounts of money that private firms, policed by the SEC, pour into the latest technology.

from Chrystia Freeland:

Barton and Kleinfeld’s tips for Uncle Sam

By Chrystia Freeland
March 1, 2011

During the depths of the financial crisis, Alcoa announced that it would lay off 13% of its global workforce, or about 13,500 people. Since then, they have built up their presence in China and Russia, finalized a new mine in Brazil, and started construction of the world's largest aluminum facilities in Saudi Arabia. Alcoa's rate of job creation in its home country of the United States, however, has been rather tepid in comparison.

from Chrystia Freeland:

The revolutionary significance of job growth

By Chrystia Freeland
March 1, 2011

It was striking to hear how encouraged both Klaus Kleinfeld and Dominic Barton sounded when Chrystia asked them about the effects of the recent turmoil in the Middle East on the business environment there. Barton believed the regime changes in Tunisia and Egypt were "the dawn of a new good thing that's occurring" and noted that it is likely that new capital will come into these countries as a new leadership emerges. Kleinfeld, whose company is in the process of building the world's largest integrated aluminum system in Saudi Arabia, said that Alcoa is still very comfortable in the region and that the only surprises with their Saudi partners have been positive surprises. For Kleinfeld, the most assured way to bring about stability in a region plagued by unrest is to have businesses come in and create jobs: