For international readers, I would like to summarize a piece on false economic research supporting tuition fees, which appeared in German in Handelsblatt on 19 February. As interesting as the fake research itself is the differing reactions of the two main channels, which had been used to publicize it: One was the prestigious Working Paper series of the National Bureau of Economic Research in the US The other was the well-read platform Vox (voxeu.org) of the London-based Centre for Economic Policy Research.
By Milford Bateman. One microcredit institution in Cambodia has in recent years been highlighted not just as a best practice example of the microcredit model in action, but as a leading example of ‘inclusive capitalism’ composed of ‘social enterprises’ that aim to do good in the community. Now AMK had been acquired for a cool $US150 million by the Taiwan-based Shanghai Commercial and Savings Bank, one of Asia’s most aggressive financial institutions.What is making the former owners of AMK wealthy, is very bad news for its already suffering creditors.
Yesterday, the EU-Parliament adopted a report, which calls on the ECB “to ensure that the Ethics Committee is not chaired by a former president of the ECB” and stresses that the president or board members of the ECB should not be members of the G30 or other groups which include executives from banks supervised by the ECB.
Four years ago, I framed it as a question: “George Soros‘ INET: An institute to improve the world or a Trojan horse of the financial oligarchy?” Today I would not use a question mark any more.Frances Coppola came to a similiar conclusion after attending the big INET gathering in Edingburgh in October.
The EU Ombudsman has issued her judgement that it constitutes maladministration on the part of the ECB that they have been letting their president, Mario Draghi, be a member of the private club of bankers G30. It would be an insult to the European people, if former ECB-president Jean-Claude Trichet, long-time chairman of said club G30 and its current honorary-chairman, would continue to serve as the chairman of the ethics committee of the ECB.
The governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney has at least two things in common with Mario Draghi, the president of the European Central Bank (ECB): He worked for Goldman Sachs before becoming a central banker, and he is a member of the Group of Thirty. The EU-Ombudsman has just called it maladministration on the part of the ECB to let Mario Draghi be a member of that secretive bankers' club. This should invite the question: What about Mark Carney and the Bank of England? The British press, apparently, couldn’t care less.
Ride-hailing platform operator Uber is often accused of undermining labour market regulations and of overpricing at times of peak demand by “surge pricing”. Uber defends itself against such accusations not only by using high-profile lobbyists, but also with the help of top-notch economists, who cooperate in exchange for exclusive data and lucrative consultancy assignments. Even reputable journals publish such sponsored analysis as if it were scholarly research.
How does Germany’s Monopolies Commission combat market concentration? By making sure that no good data is available
How many companies have merged into corporate groups in Germany? We don’t know. The official figures are completely unconvincing. We have a Monopolies Commission which, together with the German Federal Statistical Office, has the legal mandate to monitor market concentration. Germany’s parliament wanted to ensure that the necessary information about the possible emergence of problematic market power is available, only to discover this no longer fits in with the neoliberal ideology inspired by the Chicago School, which has apparently become the ruling ideology at Germany’s Monopolies Commission.
The ECB has answered questions posed by the European Ombudsman to president Mario Draghi regarding his membership and his participation in closed-door meetings of the Group of Thirty (G30), a Group in which the world’s most central bankers and commercial bankers comingle. The 17-page reply manages to evade several questions, is quite selective in the information given and even contains some false statements.
Mathew D. Rose – Investigative Journalist specialised in Organised Political Crime, Ruediger Rossig – Investigative Journalist, Balkan Expert, Nick Shaxson – Investigative Journalist and Author of “Treasure Islands” and David Shirreff – Former finance and business journalist at The Economist and Author of “Break up the Banks!”, Playwright are the editors of the new progressive weblog Brave New Europe, featuring texts from dozends of well-know authors.
Legal scholar Jane Kelsey from New Zealand has assembled an extremely well-informed report about the negotiations for the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA). You learn about the main corporate sponsors of these negotiations, organized in "Team TiSA", which have privileged access to official negotiators. Kelsey also exposes, how the TiSA sponsors took many of their extreme proposals for the prevention of regulation of finance and data abuse from rejected earlier attempts at agreements and how they continue to plug them into any trade agreement that comes along. This report is thus required reading for anybody who deals with trade agreements or data privacy issues.
Emily O‘Reilly is the EU Ombudsman, an arbiter for the public’s complaints about EU-institutions. She has earned a reputation for being tough. She wants written answers from Mario Draghi, head of the European Central Bank, the EU's monetary and banking surveillance institution. He has to explain how he makes sure that he does not divulge insider information or runs into conflicts of interest as a participant of secret talks with bankers in the so-called Group of Thirty (G30). O’Reilly’s questions, published on her website, make it plain that she will not easily be convinced.