Ann Pettifor

Jolly rich from the rich

The Economist’s latest supplement (15 May 2008) on ‘modern finance under attack’ dubs the finance sector’s critics ‘Barbarians at the vault’. The magazine’s leader writers are confident of their analysis and unequivocal: “Bubbles, excess and calamity are part of the package of Western finance. And still it is worth it.” In the same issue writers …

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Finance sector a ‘monster’ says ex head of IMF

by Ann Pettifor, 22nd May, 2008. There has been much huffing and puffing in the financial media about Horst Kohler’s comments that financial markets have become “a monster” that must “be put back in its place”. The German president who was MD of the IMF from 2000-2004, compared bankers with alchemists who were responsible for …

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Globalisation: sleepwalking to disaster

By Ann Pettifor,  Open Democracy, 11th December, 2007 On 9 August 2007, globalisation’s rickety financial levees were broken by a storm-surge of debt, invisible to most punters, but scary enough to frighten bankers. This debt includes highly leveraged corporate debt traded on secondary markets, household mortgages, credit-card debts, car loans and other substantial outlays. But …

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Why aren’t we all in Monte Carlo driving Ferraris?

Northern Rock, according to the FTs 28 June edition, ‘surprised the City yesterday by saying it had been caught out by the effect of higher funding (i.e. interest rate) costs…warning that profits would be below forecasts… ‘Adam Applegarth , chief executive said: ‘If anyone had forecast a 70 basis point increase in two-year swap rates …

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Is there a ten-year cycle?

19th July will mark ten years since the onset of the East Asian Financial Crisis. My most vivid memory of that crisis was attending the IMF’s annual meeting in Hong Kong in late September, 1997. I watched incredulously as a proposal by arrogant IMF officials to ignore democratic mandates, and economic common sense, and force …

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