Business diary: Bank error in your favour for once

Monday 24 January 2011 01:00

Fair play to Ron Delnevo, whose reaction to what must be the biggest nightmare of any chief executive who does what he does is best described as phlegmatic. Mr Delnevo runs Bank Machine, an independent operator of ATMs, and one of his cash machines has just gone badly wrong. Police were called to the machine in Dundee after a large crowd formed, anxious to take advantage of the fact it was paying out double the amounts users were asking for. "If the people using the ATM see it as a bit of fun, so be it," Mr Delnevo said.

Communication made difficult

Here is the latest thing for corporate types. The self-styled "systems thinking consultancy" Ascot Barclay offers "training in neuro-linguistic programming", for which it says demand is surging. The idea is to create "next-level transformational change models based on the skills of great communicators such as David Cameron, Bill and Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama". Perhaps the politicians in question understand what this company is on about, but we can't make any sense of it.

If everyone else is buying, sell

Three weeks into the new year, the stock market can't decide whether it wants to hold on to the magic 6,000 mark for the Footsie – it's been yo-yoing above and below this level since New Year's Day. Most commentators predict a decent year for share prices, but there's always someone out there with a glass half-empty view. Here's stockbroker Charles Stanley's view: "The confidence offorecasters relating to the outlook for the equity market makes us worry about possible unforeseen dangers." In other words, since everyone expects shares to go up, they're bound to fall.

Fox draws the line at blasphemy

Fox News's views on President Obama are well-known, but even it draws the line somewhere. US media reports reveal it has said no to an advertiser that wants to run a spot during the Super Bowl. The ad, from, features two dolls: one of Jesus, looking cross, and another of the President, smiling. As the Obama doll falls into a fish bowl the camera cuts to the Jesus doll looking smug. Even Fox decided this was unacceptable.

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