Merryn’s blog

Merryns blog

Goodwill to all men: why we should be astonished by the UK welfare state

Let’s hear it for the taxpayers, says Merryn Somerset Webb. They provide a guaranteed income for every person in the country, plus state funded education and healthcare. And they ask for very little in return.

Shareholder value maximisation: a dumb idea that we really have to dump

The idea that a company has no responsibility other than to maximise value for its shareholders is bad for workers, shareholders and society as a whole, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Fund managers: stop profiteering, start talking

Fund managers should act as the long-term company owners they are, not just as stockmarket profiteers. It’s part of what we stump up their fees for, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Never pay bonuses to CEOs – it makes them worse at their job

The ‘candle task’ proves that high payments can make people worse at their job than no payment at all. Something to bear in mind when it comes to CEO pay.

Saying goodbye to the worst tax in Britain

The old version of stamp duty may well have been worst tax in the UK, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

How Osborne plans to abolish inheritance tax

Being able to pass your Isa on to your heirs when you die is a back-door way of slashing Middle Britain’s inheritance tax bills, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Are women really better investors?

Studies seem to show that female investors outperform their male counterparts by quite a bit. Merryn Somerset Webb isn’t so sure that’s true.

The tide is beginning to turn: wages are on the rise

Wages have not risen much in real terms over the last decade. But there are some signs that the tide is turning, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

How houses kill happiness: an example

The British public’s obsession with owning houses can make for a life of utter misery, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Why taxpayers should stop supporting charities

Too many non-charitable charities are getting public money, says Merryn Somerset Webb. If you want to save the red squirrel, knock yourself out. But don’t expect the rest of us to pay for it too.

Ignore the GDP figures – Japan is doing just fine

Japan’s GDP figures suggest the country is in recession. But it’s an exciting place to be, and looks likely to stay that way, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Governments need money – and they are finding ways to get it

The government is determined to claw back what it’s owed from businesses that it sees as easy targets, such as banks and tobacco companies. Plan your investments accordingly, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Ken Fisher is wrong – fund management fees are too high

Ken Fisher, the billionaire founder of Fisher Investments, sees no problem with the level of fund management fees. Merryn Somerset Webb explains why he’s wrong.

The nine best robotics stocks

Merryn Somerset Webb picks seven of the most interesting robotics stocks worth looking at now.

Buying a house in France? Watch out for desperate governments

If you’re thinking of buying a house in France, beware. ‘Wealthy foreigners’ are getting stung with a new property tax.

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