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Merryn Somerset Webb


Merryn Somerset Webb started her career in Tokyo at public broadcaster NHK before becoming a Japanese equity broker at what was then Warburgs. She went on to work at SBC and then UBS without moving from her desk in Kamiyacho (it was the age of mergers).


After five years in Japan she returned to work in the UK at Paribas. This soon became BNP Paribas. Again no desk move was required. On leaving the City, Merryn helped The Week magazine with its City pages before becoming the launch editor of Moneyweek in 2000.


14 years on, Moneyweek is the best-selling financial magazine in the UK and Merryn remains as its editor-in-chief. Merryn also has a weekly column in the FT and a monthly column in Saga. She is a regular TV/radio commentator and speaker on financial matters and contributes to publications from the Spectator and Prospect to Woman & Home and Libertine (a magazine for the thoughtful woman).


She is a trustee of the Daiwa Anglo Japanese Foundation (which kindly financed her initial Japanese language education and sponsored her at NHK) and is a director of two investment trusts – the Baillie Gifford Shin Nippon Trust and the Montanaro European Smaller Companies Trust.


Merryn has a first class degree in history and economics from Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge and was recently awarded an honorary doctorate in Business Administration from BBP University. She took and passed (with distinction) the Private Client Investment and Investment Management exam (which qualifies her to Level 6) in 2013.

Articles written by Merryn Somerset Webb

George Osborne’s message to buy-to-letters: “don’t”

We’ve made our views on buy-to-let pretty clear recently. And it looks like the chancellor agrees, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Bonuses: worse than useless

The idea that bonuses make people work harder is nonsense, says Merryn Somerset Webb. They have little positive effect, but an almost infinite number of negative effects.

Buy-to-let: don’t do it

A lot of people are getting in on buy-to-let with borrowed money. But it’s a risk that isn’t worth taking, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Want the ‘love hotel’ experience? Tokyo’s shortage of lovers means you must head to Japan now

Japan’s demographic shift means Japan’s love hotels – which have long been a feature of tourists’ must-do lists – might not be around for much longer, says Merryn Somserset Webb.

Never underestimate the creativity of central bankers

Has your money-printing programme run out of things to buy? Never mind, says Merryn Somerset Webb. The world is full of things to splash out on. Just use your imagination.

Don’t rush in to oil stocks

If you’re thinking of buying oil stocks on the basis that the oil price will start to rise soon, you should perhaps think again, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Using entrepreneurs’ relief? Sell up fast

We currently give £3bn a year in tax breaks to entrepreneurs, and it is routinely abused, says Merryn Somerset Webb. But its days may be numbered.

Britain is becoming a country of ‘pensions apartheid’

Britain’s pensions system is becoming increasingly unfair, says Merryn Somerset Webb, with public sector workers consistently favoured over private sector workers.

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