Jeremy Warner: City bashing won't help public finances

Outlook Warren Buffett says his eyesight isn't so good these days, but even if it were fine, he doesn't think he'd be seeing too many green shoots. Even Lord Mandelson, unreconstructed optimist though he appears to be, sees no more than "green seedlings".

Jeremy Warner: BAA would struggle with third runway

Outlook: Brave of all those high-powered business leaders to come leaping out of the closet to confess they have always been against a third runway at Heathrow, isn't it? Once apon a time when there was still some possibility of the third runway getting built it might have looked dangerously risqué to have broken ranks with the rest of the business lobby in this way. Today it seems like little more than political opportunism.

Jeremy Warner: What now for the Monetary Policy Committee?

Outlook: The Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee begins its regular two-day monthly meeting today. With no interest rate decision to take – rates are already so low they cannot sensibly be cut further – the MPC may find itself struggling to fill the time. But though the Committee may have been deprived of its usual decision-making purpose, there's certainly plenty to discuss.

Jeremy Warner: Fiat's marriage in heaven is triumph of hope over experience

Outlook: I'm sorry, but I just don't see it. Sergio Marchionne, chief executive of Fiat, is self-evidently an inspirational business leader with a superficially compelling vision for creating a global auto manufacturer of sufficient scale to survive and prosper.

Jeremy Warner: Informa swaps London for Zug in tax revolt

Outlook: Zug in central Switzerland, conveniently located within reach of some of the country's ritziest ski resorts, is no doubt a nice enough place for a visit. But is the publishing and events group Informa doing the right thing by relocating to this remote Swiss canton so as to avoid an estimated £10m a year in tax?

Jeremy Warner: What do we want to do with our banks?

Outlook: This week's Treasury committee report on the banking crisis reserves some of its more biting observations for UKFI, the supposedly independent organisation established to hold and manage the taxpayers' various investments in the banking industry.

Jeremy Warner: Hands off our hedge funds, protection for private equity

Outlook Once again, I find myself having to perform the unenviable task of defending the hedge fund and private equity industries. Populism nearly always makes for bad policy, and by pandering to the "locust" hating politicians of Paris and Berlin, the European Commission seems to be falling into just such a trap.

Jeremy Warner: Desperate and not so desperate rights issues

Outlook As a textbook example of the way the credit crunch has been hurting ordinary companies, they don't come more striking than DSG International, the former Dixons electricals retailing group. Debt has risen threefold in just five months, forcing the company into a distress rights issue and share placing.

Jeremy Warner: Steel giants struggle under a mountain of deal-induced debt

Outlook Sales down by a half, another $1bn-plus quarterly loss and a distress $3bn issue of new equity and convertibles to match. Anyone would think this another everyday tale of banking folk. In fact, it is the latest update from the steel giant ArcelorMittal. Unless it be banking, few industries are quite as cyclical as steel.

Jeremy Warner: BP and Shell struggle to keep up with Exxon

Outlook Should BP and Royal Dutch Shell redomicile and relist to the United States? The question is largely academic, for it is most unlikely to happen any time soon. Yet London-based oil chiefs sometimes look longingly across the pond at the apparently superior share-price performance of Exxon Mobil.

Jeremy Warner: Sorrell worries about fiscal threat to upturn

Outlook It's not this year that Sir Martin Sorrell, chief executive of the advertising giant WPP, worries about, or next. Rather it's what comes after when governments around the world are confronted by the brutal reality of what to do about the burgeoning fiscal deficits they are acquiring in trying to manage their way through the recession. Do they don the hair-shirt and attack the deficit in true Thatcherite style, or do they simply ignore it and hope that inflation eventually does the trick for them?

Jeremy Warner: BP's dividend looks safe enough

Outlook So far, so good. The bumper profits reported by oil companies for last year, fuelled as they were by the sky-high oil price, were plainly not going to last into these recessionary times, so there had been fears that even the mighty BP would succumb to the dividend-cutting trend set by the rest of corporate Britain, depriving investors of yet another once-trustworthy source of income in an increasingly income-scarce world. The evidence of yesterday's first-quarter figures is surprisingly reassuring; the payout may survive intact. Yet that's a big "may".

Jeremy Warner: No risk of default when inflation can do the job

Outlook I'm ever more puzzled by a note from Moody's last week suggesting that the British Government's triple-A credit rating may be in danger if after the next election firmer action than envisaged in the Budget isn't taken to bring down the fiscal deficit.

Jeremy Warner: That's just what we needed – a global pandemic

Outlook: Swine flu haunts an industry already rendered comatose by fuel costs and the economic downturn

Jeremy Warner: Even the boss is sceptical about GM's rescue plan

Outlook: If bondholders think they are getting a raw deal, what about existing equity holders?
News
All campaigning and no investing... Prime Minister David Cameron and Chancellor George Osborne at Arriva TrainCare in Crewe on Monday
Surveys suggest that uncertainty over the outcome of the poll on 7 May is hitting investment by firms and depressing consumption. How worried should we be? Ben Chu investigates
News
Don’t count your retirement money yet: employers will stop receiving a pension rebate next year and their staff may lose out
The area where most damage is being done is the tax treatment of private-sector pensions, says Rupert Pennant-Rea
News
HSBC's chief executive, Stuart Gulliver, had insisted he had always paid full UK tax on all his earnings
The bank, all of a sudden, has become the injured party, says James Moore
News
Unpaid internships lasting longer than four weeks would be banned by Labour if it wins power next May
Miliband has promised financial protection for interns. Does it make sense? Matt Gingell takes a look
News
Ukip leader Nigel Farage waits to speak at a public meeting in Cliftonville, Kent, as he continues his campaign for the South Thanet seat at the General Election
Nigel Farage is right: we should be having a more honest debate about immigration. But the issue is not the one with which the Ukip leader is obsessed: in fact, we need more immigration, not less, according to David Prosser
News
Many in business believe even the prospect of a referendum is harmful
A 'Brexit' would raise the price of your goods and services
News
‘Missing our deals will haunt you’ – Phones 4U’s TV ad came back to haunt it
It seemed bad enough that a popular retailer could be allowed to collapse simply because its suppliers suddenly decided to pull the plug. Now Simon Neville reveals who got their money back – and who didn't
News
Tesco’s new boss Dave Lewis has decided to buy out Euphorium completely. Jim Armitage reports
News
Bernanke’s move does show the more subtle side of the Washington-Wall Street nexus, says Jim Armitage
News
For Britain’s multinationals, a global economic recovery looks to be under way, says Jim Armitage
News
There is no reason to expect secular stagnation – even if it is hard to see quite where growth will come from, says Hamish McRae
News
Margrethe Vestager wants small businesses to have a fair representation on search engines
Margrethe Vestager, the EU's new competition watchdog and one of the most prominent and well-liked figures in Danish politics, has taken on the technology giant over its alleged abuse of the market. Oscar Williams-Grut reports
News
A Lehman Brothers employee leaves the bank’s European headquarters
Ben Chu asks: has the industry really absorbed the fund segregation lesson? And are regulators succeeding in enforcing the rules?
News
David Cameron unveils the Conservative party manifesto in Swindon (PA)
The OBR was told by the last government not to audit the election manifestos. Jamie Murray on why that should change.
News
Margaret Thatcher with the new owners of a property in Essex which was sold for just over £8,000 in 1980
The Tories want to revive and extend Margaret Thatcher’s flagship housing policy. Ben Chu looks at what the possible consequences could be
News
Tony and Cherie Blair on the day he was elected
Mark Leftly with Parliamentary Business
News
British Gas announced yesterday that it will cut bills – but only by 5 per cent, and not until the end of next month, when the coldest weather is likely to be over
But shareholders in Centrica will take heart. Even as customers may brace for  the worst, says Jim Armitage
News
Paper trail: Deidre has a crack team of letter-writing lieuten-aunts, armed with cups of tea and a bank of good sense
Just when you thought banker bashing might finally come to an end, another hideous toad crawls out from under a rock to stir the public’s justified indignation yet again. Jim Armitage takes a peek
News
Shopping on Oxford Street: the new year begins with a rise in VAT, which will impact on high-street spending
There’s something perverse about the Competition and Markets Authority’s decision to block Poundland’s attempted takeover of 99p Stores, says Simon Neville
News
Ferdinand Piech, the chairman, at the Volkswagen plant in Wolfsburg, Germany
Ferdinand Piëch, the powerful chair of VW, has fallen out with his chief executive and protégé Martin Winterkorn. Tony Patterson lifts the bonnet and examines what’s going on at the German automobile giant
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