Business Diary: Fraser comment is a no-brainer

Click to follow
The Independent Online

No doubt Stuart Fraser, abigwig in the City of London Corporation, felt he was among friends when speaking at a Conservative Party conference fringe meeting about the Cityyesterday. Still, it may not have been entirely wise to begin a defence of bankers' bonuses thus: "When God gave out brains, he didn't give them all out equally, and so we have to live in an unequal society."Naturally, his remarks are now doing the rounds of theblogosphere.

A whip-round for Kerviel?

Commiserations to Jérôme Kerviel on yesterday'sverdict. Still, France's rogue trader might console himself with the fact that this case has at least done wonders for the size of his social circle. Before the scandal, he boasted just 11 Facebook friends – today the total stands at 4,005. Now, if he can just get each one of them to cough up €100,000, that debt to Société Générale will be repaid in no time at all.

How to smokein Germany

Our thanks to BloombergBusinessweek magazine for thehelpful and entertaining guide to German social etiquette it has just published. It is full of useful tips for anyone travelling to Germany on business – best of all is the advice thatGermans consider it extremely bad form to light a cigarette from a candle. Apparently, a common German superstition suggests that doing so will kill a sailor. Smokers, you have been warned.

UKTI hunts down gong

Forget what you may have read about Britain'sdisappearance from the world's premier league of exporters. The work of UK Trade & Investment, the Government department responsible for promoting British trade, has been so impressive that it is has just been shortlisted for the Best Trade Promotion Agency for a Developed Country award at a bash in Mexico City (not a bad gig for any officials who want to attend). With only Australia and Hungary to beat, it seems that UKTI no longer has to worry about countries such as Germany and China.