Merryn’s blog

Big tech firms beware: big government is coming for you

One problem with big tech stocks is that they’re very expensive. But another is the threat from overzealous regulation, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Could Britain rejoin a much-improved EU?

Theresa May and Jean-Claude Juncker © Getty Images

The EU desperately needs wholesale reform. If it gets it, there is no reason why the UK shouldn’t join the new version at some point in the future, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

The UK can’t afford free university tuition – but Japan can. Here’s how

Japan’s government wants to dramatically boost domestic consumption in Japan by offering free higher education for all 18-22 year olds. Merryn Somerset Webb explains how it can afford to do it.

Where to get £900m to spend on social care

Get rid of inheritance-tax relief on gifts to charities – and you’ll have an extra £900m to pay for social care, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

How a pension deficit could be costing you £200 a year

Workers in companies with defined-benefits pension deficits are paid on average £200 a year less than those in firms without them, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Sirius Minerals and the case for a land-value tax

Sirius Minerals drilling rig © Sirius Minerals

Why should people who have done nothing in particular receive a huge windfall just because they happen to own land in the right place at the right time, asks Merryn Somerset Webb.

How car finance and diesel emissions could be the carmakers’ undoing

The collapse in diesel car prices and the popularity of personal contract plan car financing will combine to cause a lot of pain for the carmakers, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Pension deficits aren't real - here's how to fix them

Pension deficits threaten the survival of otherwise healthy companies, damage productivity and hold down wages. But there’s a much simpler solution than just throwing money at the problem, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Want to be a middle earner paying 52% in income tax? Move to Scotland

Living in Scotland could cost the country’s not-particularly-high-earners the equivalent of a family holiday in extra taxes, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Fund managers are beginning to act like responsible business owners

There are signs that the world’s big shareholders are finally grasping that, as the technical owners of listed companies, they have long-term financial and social responsibilities, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Corporations must prepare for interventionist politics

High-revenue but low-tax-paying tech companies could be targeted as the government mollifies voters with interventionist politics, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

Even if Macron wins the French election, there could still be chaos

If Emmanuel Macron wins the French election by a small margin, it could cause chaos. It could even make France ungovernable, says Merryn Somerset Webb.

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