Martin Vander Weyer rssVander-Weyer-NEW

Martin Vander Weyer is business editor of The Spectator. He writes the weekly Any Other Business column.

(Photo: Getty)

Which behaved worse: callous Thomas Cook or cynical Barclays?

30 May 2015

Which is worse, morally and reputationally — to be Thomas Cook, shamed by its refusal to show proper human concern, for fear of being taken to admit responsibility, over the… Read more

A season of new optimism

23 May 2015

How long will the post-election rally last before the next round of market jitters kick in? Whether it’s ‘Grexit, Brexit, even Scoxit’, as Tim Price says in this issue, there… Read more

Powerhouse Jim O'Neill (Photo: Getty)

On Jim O’Neill, the new ‘Northern Powerhouse’ supremo

23 May 2015

A doff of my flat cap to Jim O’Neill, the former Goldman Sachs economist who has been made a peer, a Treasury minister and George Osborne’s ‘Northern Powerhouse’ supremo. The… Read more

Employment

Can Cameron bring us full employment? And do we want it?

16 May 2015

‘Two million jobs have been created since 2010 — but there will not be a moment of rest until we have reached our goal,’ said David Cameron in a Telegraph… Read more

And the award goes to... (Photo: Getty)

Why Yanis Varoufakis is my politician of the year

After the heat of battle: the accolades, the recriminations, the telling of history by the victors. It’s six months early for our Parliamentarian of the Year shortlist, but my nominee… Read more

(Photo: Stephen Chernin/Getty)

Why David Cameron is best placed to win the crucial Ikea vote

If Ikea were a constituency, it would be a three-way marginal. That was my thought one morning last week as I walked a mile and a half round the Batley… Read more

BRITAIN-POLITICS-ELECTION-EDUCATION

Why so many bankers secretly like Labour’s non-dom proposal

25 April 2015

The interesting thing about Labour’s pledge to abolish non-dom tax status — a squib designed to trap Tories into expressing sympathy for the rich, in the knowledge on the part… Read more

Ben van Beurden (Photo: Getty)

How Helge Lund’s humungous salary helped Shell to a bargain

18 April 2015

Helge Lund was widely expected to go into domestic politics when he ended his successful tenure as head of Statoil, the Norwegian state oil and gas company. Instead, he was… Read more

Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis Photo: Getty

A Greek default is coming – as soon as next month

11 April 2015

Bored with the election? Switch over to the Greek debt drama. In this week’s cliffhanger, silver-tongued finance minister Yanis Varoufakis visited IMF chief Christine Lagarde on Sunday, promised to meet… Read more

(Photo: Getty)

Airport wars: why I'm betting on Gatwick

4 April 2015

Easter is a good time to talk about airports — or perhaps a bad time, if you bought your Spectator in the shopping labyrinth that impedes your path to the… Read more

ThinkstockPhotos-186958373

If you really want to make money from the FTSE100, be a chief executive

28 March 2015

The FTSE100 index has at last breached 7,000, surpassing its peak of 30 December 1999 and provoking moderate celebration among investors who have enjoyed such poor returns all these years.… Read more

Photo: Getty

Here’s what a real reform of business rates would look like

21 March 2015

Of all the measures talked up ahead of the Budget, the reannouncement of a ‘radical’ review of the business rates was the least concrete in content but the most important… Read more

171106744

Won’t someone please unleash the challenger banks?

14 March 2015

In my Yorkshire town of Helmsley the NatWest branch, originally an outpost of Beckett & Co of Leeds, has closed down — collateral damage of its crippled parent RBS’s continuing… Read more

Keep calm and stay focused

7 March 2015

‘How are you?’ asked a health-obsessed friend of mine. ‘Fine,’ I said. ‘In fact, terrific.’ He stared into my eyes. ‘That’s often a warning sign. You should really get some… Read more

Standard Chartered new boy: Bill Winters Photo: Getty

Watch out: Standard Chartered is even trickier to manage than credit default swaps

7 March 2015

One day you’re an elder statesman, chairing top committees and pontificating on Question Time, and the next you’re out in the cold, reading terrible headlines about yourself in the newspapers… Read more

Prime Minister David Cameron Visits Manchester

How Labour’s 50p tax trick has ended up helping George Osborne

28 February 2015

Last week’s public borrowing and tax-receipt figures, headlined ‘Chancellor hails biggest monthly surplus in seven years’, received considerably less attention than the employment and wage-growth numbers a week earlier, underlining… Read more

GREECE-FINANCE-ECONOMY-DEBT

Bet on a swift Grexit

21 February 2015

‘Will Greece exit the eurozone in 2015?’ Paddy Power was pricing ‘yes’ at 3-to-1 on Tuesday, with 5-to-2 on another Greek general election within the year and 6-to-4 on the… Read more

SWITZERLAND-TAXATION-POLITICS-BANKING

Lord Green must answer for HSBC’s sins – but maybe it was always too big to manage

14 February 2015

Stephen Green — the former trade minister Lord Green of Hurstpier-point, who became this week’s political punchbag— was always a rather Olympian, out-of-the-ordinary figure at HSBC. This was a bank… Read more

BRITAIN-SCOTLAND-ENERGY-OIL-ABERDEEN

Why cheap oil could mean a Labour victory

7 February 2015

BP’s profits are down, and the oil giant is slashing up to $6 billion out of its investment plan for the year. At Shell, the cut could amount to $15… Read more

The politician, Baron Brougham, directing a fire-hose onto gas flames issuing from the mouth of Nelson's former captain, Thomas Cochrane by George Cruikshank Photo: Getty

Filthy commerce: scandals have rocked the City ever since the Napoleonic wars

7 February 2015
Forging Capitalism Ian Klaus

Yale, pp.287, £18.99, ISBN: 9780300181944

The whole idea of capitalism, according to Enlightenment philosophers, was that it created a positive spiral of moral behaviour. ‘Concern for our own happiness recommends us to the virtue of… Read more

New Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis Photo: Getty

What’s good about austerity (whatever the Greeks think)

31 January 2015

The only question I remember from my Oxford moral philosophy paper was ‘What is integrity and is it a virtue?’ In the margins of all the politicking that follows the… Read more

SWITZERLAND-ECONOMY-BANK-RATE-FOREX

How Switzerland's central bank got it so wrong – and the place that got it right

24 January 2015

The Swiss National Bank usually ticks away as quietly as one of its nation’s more expensive timepieces, but when the cuckoo does occasionally burst out of the clock, all hell… Read more

The RMT's Mick Cash (centre) Photo: PA Images

The RMT’s Mick Cash and Tesco’s Dave Lewis win my prizes for media manipulation

17 January 2015

Mixed results for the Brits at the Golden Globes, but I’m pleased to announce that my Golden Monkey Wrench for media manipulation goes to Mick Cash and his team at… Read more

100095635

Good news! The eurozone is now strong enough to split

10 January 2015

Ever since European Central Bank president Mario Draghi declared himself ready, in July 2012, ‘to do whatever it takes to preserve the euro’, the likely disintegration of the single currency… Read more

The Dance to the Music of Time, 1638, by Nicolas Poussin Photo: Getty

What to expect in business in 2015 (probably not the Triumph of Probity, Honour and Prudence)

3 January 2015

You might recall a column I once wrote about a party at the Wallace Collection. It took place in late 2008, the host was the US investment bank Morgan Stanley,… Read more