MoneyWeek 1069

MoneyWeek is a weekly magazine that enables you to become a better-informed, smarter investor and enjoy the rewards of managing your money with confidence. Week-in, week-out we'll guide you through the financial world as it changes, alerting you to all the opportunities to profit and dangers to avoid, as they appear. Income strategies, rising-star companies, the best funds and trusts, clever ways to preserve your wealth during market turmoil... you will get the best ideas from the sharpest financial minds and investing professionals in Britain.

United Kingdom
Dennis Publishing UK
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51 Issues

in this issue

3 min
from the editor-in-chief...

“Our current high levels of inflation are looking less transitory by the minute” The latest numbers on UK inflation are out. The consumer price index is rising at 3.2% a year. That’s pretty nasty. But look to the US and you will see something nastier: there, prices are rising at 5.3%. We haven’t seen these kinds of numbers in the West for decades. You might think they aren’t much to worry about. The various economic distortions caused by the extraordinary policy response to Covid-19 were hardly going to just fade away. The meeting of supply constraints with unlimited money printing was always going to have consequences (see page 20). But it is perfectly reasonable to think they will work through the system and we will soon be back to our old…

1 min
prizewinner of the week

A politician’s waist size may also be a sign of the amount of corruption in their regime, reckons the winner of this year’s Ig Nobel economics prize. Pavlo Blavatskyy of Montpellier Business School estimated the body mass index of ministers in ex-Soviet republics, finding “those places where officials were most likely to be on the take… were also home to the most portly parliamentarians”, says The Times. The link between girth and sleaze goes back a long way. Nero, one of the most corrupt Roman emperors, was also “one of the more corpulent”. Henry VIII (pictured) “grew more rapacious as his frame became more capacious”. Hermann Goering was “the greediest, in all senses” of Hitler’s inner circle. North Korea’s Kim Jong-un “is a model neither of healthy eating or good…

1 min
good week for:

The woolly mammoth could be brought back from extinction through a $15m project to create an elephant-mammoth hybrid, says The Guardian. Bioscience firm Colossal plans to take skin cells from Asian elephants and “reprogramme” them into “more versatile stem cells” which carry DNA taken from frozen mammoths found in the Arctic permafrost. If all goes well, researchers hope to have their first set of calves in six years. Emma Raducanu (pictured) became the UK’s first female Grand Slam title winner in 44 years after she won the US Open without dropping a set, taking home a cheque for $2.5m. The 18-year-old is the first player to enter one of the four major tournaments from the qualifying rounds and make it all the way through to become champion.…

1 min
bad week for:

King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands could lose subsidies of €4.7m over five years if he refuses to keep the 16,000-acre Het Loo crown estate open to the public all year round, says The Times. The king closes the estate – which is also a nature reserve – from 15 September to 25 December “for reasons of his ‘private life’” – widely seen asshorthand for hunting. The government wants for it to remain open at least 358 days a year between sunrise and sunset. A £3m project that saw the Scottish Prison Service issue more than 7,000 inmates with mobile phones when visits were restricted over lockdown has backfired, says ITV News. The “supposedly tamper-proof” phones were hacked by inmates who used them to arrange drug deals and criminal activity. The prison…

2 min
china’s epic property bubble hisses air

Chinese property is in a “bubble of epic proportions”, says Matthew Brooker on Bloomberg. On some measures it “overshadows the pre-global financial crisis” boom in US housing valuations. In Shenzhen a flat costs 43.5 times the average annual salary, three times the figure for London. The market “stands comparison with the Japanese real estate bubble of the 1980s”, which inflicted a “lost decade” on the economy after it burst in 1990. Turmoil at Evergrande This week has brought new turmoil at Chinese property developer Evergrande. The group has been struggling to service a $300bn debt pile. Once “the world’s most valuable real-estate group”, today Evergrande is “the world’s most indebted property developer”, says Ian Verrender on It is trying to sell assets to raise cash, but has warned that it could…

1 min
emerging markets grapple with inflation

Latin American “inflation is back with a vengeance”, says Michael Stott in the Financial Times. In Brazil prices rose by an annual 9.7% in August, the fastest pace in five years. In Mexico, core prices [stripping out volatile food and energy items] rose at their fastest rate since 1999. The region’s central bankers have responded with aggressive interest-rate rises. Brazil has hiked rates four times since March to 5.25% and investors see more to come. While policymakers in developed markets quarrel about whether inflation is transitory or not, Latin American central banks are taking no chances. The region is highly susceptible to inflation, most notoriously during the 1970s and 1980s. Central bankers in other emerging markets are more relaxed, says Udith Sikand for Gavekal Research. Indonesia has cut interest rates this…