Business Diary: Is Murdoch good for Sky's image?
Tuesday 30 August 2011
James Murdoch will no doubt be happy the Bank Holiday weekend passed by without any further smoking guns emerging over the phone hacking scandal. Still, the campaign to hold him to account continues – not least amongstcertain investors in British Sky Broadcasting, where Mr Murdoch remains chairman. Institutional investors point to the BSkyB "Memorandum on Corporate Governance", which includes this duty amongst the chairman's list of responsibilities: "To enhance the company's public standing and image overall". It's difficult to argue that James has pulled that one off of late.
Dr Doom avoids the storm's wrath
It was a relief to see Nouriel Roubini, the self-styled Doctor Doom of the economics world, got through Hurricane Irene (he lives in New York's EastVillage), sending pictures of storm damage out via Twitter – especially given his customary pessimism in advance. His pre-storm advice was: "Keep cash to buy goods as ATMs may not work; gold bugs will schlepp (carry around) their $10k gold bars to barter for bread."
Goldman has a dress-down day
Still on Irene, we're sad to hear that in these difficult times, standards are slipping at an institution people can usually depend on to rise above adversity. Staff at Goldman Sachs' New York office were told it was ok to come to work in casual dress yesterday, as long as they "exercised good judgement". No news yet of who breached that requirement and how, but still, we wouldn't have expected Goldman to allow a hurricane to affect it so badly. We thought they were all-powerful.
Let the slow train take the strain
The good folk who run Gatwick Airport are up in arms over proposals to force the Gatwick Express direct train service from central London to stop at Clapham Junction – they reckon that could put the airport at a disadvantage to Heathrow. Strangely, business passengers, normally the first to complain about this sort of thing, seem unmoved by the proposal. Is that because in cost-conscious times, they've noticed that the regular London-Gatwick service takes only a few minutes longer than the "Express" route and offers a significant saving?
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