Andreas Whittam Smith

Andreas Whittam Smith was a financial journalist until 1985 when he led the team that founded The Independent. The paper’s first editor (1986-1994), he has subsequently been the president of the British Board of Film Classification (1998-2002) and chairman of the Financial Ombudsman Service (1998-2003). He is currently First Church Estates Commissioner responsible for £5bn of the Church's investments, and chairman of the Children's Mutual.

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Reverend Paul Flowers has revealed himself for what he is: the consummate fantasist, blaming everyone except himself

Nobody goes forward for a job without considering his or her own suitability

The right to control retirement savings has hit insurance firms

Pensioners will have the freedom to spend their savings as they wish – but where will this ‘free, impartial’ advice come from?

The Treasury must have remembered the mis-selling scandals of the mid-1990s

The row over Prince Charles’ letters is not just legal argument vs public interest. There are real constitutional implications

By convention, the monarch has the right to be consulted, to advise and to warn

While politicians bicker over self-serving definitions of poverty, a simple measure of ‘need’ is being overlooked

The obvious place to start is with the consumption of food

Food bank operators report that people in low-paid work are turning up during their lunch breaks seeking help

Why the priests are right to take on our Government over welfare

It will be a long haul. Wage rises will go on lagging behind price rises

No government can serve its citizens properly while outsourcing on the scale that this one does. It’s time the practice stopped

For too long, the political parties have believed that public service is bad

An independent Scotland would not need to share currency with the rest of the United Kingdom

Alex Salmond could do worse than look to Ireland in the 1920s

The row of men in suits that may come to define the Coalition

This was a moment that demonstrated in vivid detail why the Conservative Party has trouble attracting women voters

Christine Lagarde, the head of the International Monetary Fund, who recently issued a warning about the risk of deflation

So you thought the economic recovery was under way? Well, I’ve got a word of warning for you – deflation

As prices keep falling, so customers think about waiting before buying

Flooded fields around the River Tone seen from Windmill Hill, Somerset. Some parts of England have suffered the wettest January since records began

On the Somerset floods, our inbox tells you all you need to know

Three Independent letter writers covered the issue superbly

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