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From Siemens to GlaxoSmithKline, some of the world’s biggest businesses have found themselves entangled in controversial bribery cases in the past. Laura French looks at eight of the largest in history

A history of bribery

From Siemens to GlaxoSmithKline, some of the world’s biggest businesses have found themselves entangled in controversial bribery cases in the past. Laura French looks at eight of the largest in history

In December 2014, former government deputy leader Rafael Hui and Hong Kong property developer Thomas Kwok – one of Asia’s richest moguls – were jailed for bribery. Kwok had made payments totalling more than $4.3m in return for confidential informati...

The cost of living in a major city borders on the extreme, meaning many youngsters simply cannot afford to gain valuable experience offered by unpaid internships, harming social mobility in the process

Unpaid internships in the city

The cost of living in a major city borders on the extreme, meaning many youngsters simply cannot afford to gain valuable experience offered by unpaid internships, harming social mobility in the process

Young people around the world will be familiar with this paradox. In order to get a job you need experience, but how do you get experience if you cannot get a job? It is a concept that every graduate or school leaver will be familiar with. At least they w...

A number of recent studies have suggested that money elicits immorality, but it’s those very studies that fuel misguided – and dangerous – stereotypes, perceptions and social divisions

The psychology of wealth

A number of recent studies have suggested that money elicits immorality, but it’s those very studies that fuel misguided – and dangerous – stereotypes, perceptions and social divisions

Money poisons the mind, argue studies splurged across the pages of international media over the past few years. Such studies have resulted in interesting findings – a recent paper published in November in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, f...

China’s struggle with pollution has been likened to a war, though the environmental protection budget itself is by no means a bountiful war chest

Waging war on budget

China’s struggle with pollution has been likened to a war, though the environmental protection budget itself is by no means a bountiful war chest

In the spring of 2014, Li Keqiang finally took to the stage and declared a “war on pollution”, describing the smog that had enveloped China’s major cities as “nature’s red-light warning against inefficient and blind development.” Here the p...

Much of the noise in the market comes from forecasters and economists making predictions about the next big boom or bust, but is forecasting a futile pursuit?

The problem with predictions

Much of the noise in the market comes from forecasters and economists making predictions about the next big boom or bust, but is forecasting a futile pursuit?

“Nobody, neither the experts nor us amateurs have the least idea what is going to happen with the economy in the future… I don’t think the economists really know”, argued former British Conservative member of parliament, Matthew Parris, in an inte...

Turkey has posted explosive growth in recent years, but an overreliance on credit-driven stimuli and an increasingly authoritarian government have shaken confidence in the economy

Erdoğan’s legacy continues as Turkey braces for another crisis

Turkey has posted explosive growth in recent years, but an overreliance on credit-driven stimuli and an increasingly authoritarian government have shaken confidence in the economy

In 2013 the Turkish government unveiled a scheme to reconstruct the old Ottoman military barracks in place of Taksim Gezi Park, and thus the seeds of a 3.5 million-strong uprising were planted. It wasn’t long until hundreds – and later thousands – o...

ECB stress tests are looming over Europe’s banks as the regulator prepares to take on major financial institutions. But a lack of information over transparency is threatening to destabilise Europe’s economy

Testing times for European banks

ECB stress tests are looming over Europe’s banks as the regulator prepares to take on major financial institutions. But a lack of information over transparency is threatening to destabilise Europe’s economy

Europe’s banking industry has hardened most banks after years of crisis, and taught them a thing or two about dealing with adversity and regulation. Now, the ultimate test still lies ahead for Europe’s banks, in the form of unnerving balance sheet eva...

The world’s largest democracy heads to the polls in May, faced with the choice between more of the same or a pro-business agenda. It must not miss another chance to reform its economy

India needs political change fast to make vital economic reforms

The world’s largest democracy heads to the polls in May, faced with the choice between more of the same or a pro-business agenda. It must not miss another chance to reform its economy

When Manmohan Singh was inaugurated as Prime Minister of India in 2004, the world expected him to oversee a period of rapid transformation, fuelled by breath-taking economic growth. Here was a man renowned for his economic acumen, clean from the corruptio...

A watered-down version of the much-anticipated banking union is reaching the final stages before approval. But it will never be enough to protect the EU while other, deeper issues are left unaddressed

Unity will not be the church of the banking industry

A watered-down version of the much-anticipated banking union is reaching the final stages before approval. But it will never be enough to protect the EU while other, deeper issues are left unaddressed

After much humming and hawing by EU leaders, the much-anticipated banking union is on the cusp of becoming a reality. Only it’s five years too late. Much has been made of this united front behind the region’s banks, but negotiations have been protract...

There is great economic disparity within countries now. While many look to ways of offsetting this inequality, it’s clear that capitalism isn’t the only driving force of growth

Extreme inequality: a price to a pay for economic growth?

There is great economic disparity within countries now. While many look to ways of offsetting this inequality, it’s clear that capitalism isn’t the only driving force of growth

Pope Francis warned last November that “ideologies which defend the absolute autonomy of the marketplace” are driving rapid growth in inequality. Is he right? In one sense, Francis was clearly wrong: in many cases, inequality between countries is d...

The prospects for most advanced economies look set to improve by varying degrees in 2014, but emerging economies still have the more promising outlook. There is risk in all quarters, however

A risky future for advanced and emerging economies

The prospects for most advanced economies look set to improve by varying degrees in 2014, but emerging economies still have the more promising outlook. There is risk in all quarters, however

The global economy had another difficult year in 2013. The advanced economies’ below-trend growth continued, with output rising at an average annual rate of about one percent, while many emerging markets experienced a slowdown to below-trend 4.8 percent...

Vladimir Putin is keen to assert Russia’s economic strength, but, as his tactics become more and more reminiscent of his KGB past, he could face a damaging backlash

The survivalist in the Kremlin

Vladimir Putin is keen to assert Russia’s economic strength, but, as his tactics become more and more reminiscent of his KGB past, he could face a damaging backlash

Vladimir Putin’s improbable rise to the pinnacle of Russian power in 1999 to 2000 was partly the result of an elite consensus about the importance of restoring order to the Russian state after a decade of domestic crisis and international humiliation. H...

The EU has decided reform is necessary for economic recovery, but there comes a time when individual governments need to take control of their own revival plans

Whose reform is it anyway?

The EU has decided reform is necessary for economic recovery, but there comes a time when individual governments need to take control of their own revival plans

Together with fiscal consolidation, structural reform is the new European mantra. International organisations and EU bodies regard such reform as a prerequisite of economic recovery, growth and alleviation of the unemployment plague. Indeed, the agreem...

The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership could be the biggest bilateral trade deal in history, but complications must be resolved on both sides

Transatlantic trade goes global

The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership could be the biggest bilateral trade deal in history, but complications must be resolved on both sides

Negotiations have commenced between the US and the EU on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), potentially the largest regional free-trade agreement in history. If successful, it would cover more than 40 percent of global GDP and acco...

There is no question China’s economy has slowed, but sceptics are far too quick to predict the nation’s demise. In reality, the country is getting ever closer to striking the right balance

Misreading Chinese rebalancing

There is no question China’s economy has slowed, but sceptics are far too quick to predict the nation’s demise. In reality, the country is getting ever closer to striking the right balance

The punditocracy has once again succumbed to the ‘China Crash’ syndrome – a malady that seems to afflict economic and political commentators every few years. Never mind the recurring false alarms over the past couple of decades. This time is differe...

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