World trade growth is slowing. Its future may depend on internal trade within a handful of discrete, powerful regions—especially Asia.
Governance, Regulation & Compliance
Bulgaria’s multilingual workforce attracts foreign investors, but corruption is a problem.
When the Justice and Development Party (AKP) swept elections in November, financial markets were focused neither on prime minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, nor on president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. All eyes were on new deputy prime minister Mehmet Şimşek, the former Finance minister, who may be the only reformer within the largely statist AKP.
There’s been big change in the small country of Burkina Faso. On November 29, the West African nation of 17 million held its first free elections in almost three decades.
The prospect of the lifting of economic sanctions against Iran has investors excited about the return of this market to the global economic community. But the message is: Proceed with caution.
Management | Corporate Governance
With the enactment of the Modern Slavery Act in October, the United Kingdom has made a new addition to the growing body of compliance regulations sprouting up globally.
Capital Markets | Foreign Exchange Controls
In early November, Chinese Communist Party leaders announced plans to make the renminbi a “freely tradable and usable currency” by 2020—when the latest five-year development plan is set to finish—according to a statement by the party’s Xinhua News Agency.
Management | Corporate Boards
Led by investors such as Carl Icahn, Bill Ackman and Jeff Smith, and targeting companies from DuPont to PepsiCo, campaigns by activist investors have become a common occurrence in the United States in the past few decades.
FX markets move to ramp up self-regulation before politicians step in.
United States: Former US Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke lashed out at what he described as a do-nothing Congress in his new memoir, Courage to Act.
Thomas Gass, assistant secretary-general for policy coordination and interagency affairs in the Department of Economic and Social Affairs at the United Nations, talked with Global Finance about the UN’s new Sustainable Development Goals and how the private sector can help.
Heng Swee Keat, Singapore’s education minister and former central bank managing director, was named the nation’s next Finance minister after a landslide election victory in September by the ruling People’s Action Party and prime minister Lee Hsien Loong.
Capital Markets | Banking Licenses
Saudi Arabia cracked open the door to direct investments in its stock market by qualified foreign institutions in June, when HSBC became the first foreign firm to receive a license.
Market Trends | Intellectual Property
A European patent regime with unitary effect and a Unitary Patent Court is set to come into force as early as 2017, making it simpler and cheaper for international corporations to defend their intellectual property rights.
The International Securities Services Association adoption of financial crime compliance principles, could prove costly for custodian banks, who are nervous about the changes.
Newsmakers | US
In the United States, a real estate developer turned politician is stealing the thunder of many more-seasoned statesmen.
Executive Pay | Since the global financial crisis of 2008, corporate boards have been under pressure to tie executive pay to performance.
African nations can no longer get by on mineral wealth and commodities alone—and they know it.
Global Finance’s annual evaluation of the work of the world’s central bankers found some stellar performances, and some dismal ones. The toughest challenge for many: propping up falling prices.