With the local elections over and done with, the EU referendum campaigning shifts up a gear. And this week, we have an exclusive interview with perhaps the Leave campaign's biggest asset Boris Johnson recently released from his mayoral duties to concentrate on bigger things.
On top of that, Matthew Partridge weighs up the pros and cons of ethical investing, Matthew Lynn asks if you should buy into Saudi Aramco's massive IPO, and we take a look at the controversial Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). To find out more, sign up for MoneyWeek magazine now.
Boris: the only safe option is to Vote Leave
Boris Johnson Conservative MP for Uxbridge and South Ruislip, ex-mayor of London and now leading light of the "Vote Leave" campaign gave an exclusive interview to MoneyWeek magazine this week. It's typical Boris witty, outspoken and unashamedly populist. In it, he rebuts claims that Brexit would be bad for business. "I can think of only two British industries that may suffer a significant loss of business if we leave", says Boris, "lobbyists and lawyers. Brussels is a goldmine for them." Everybody else would benefit, he says.
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It's a wide-ranging interview, covering town and country. Farmers "are looking forward to Brexit with optimism", says Boris. With the money saved by not paying into the EU, we'll be able to "continue to support farmers to the same extent we do now and still have money left over". As for the City, which many feel will suffer in the event of Britain leaving the EU, Boris has "every confidence" that it will "thrive outside the EU". Far from being beneficial, Brussels represents "a genuine threat to our financial services industry".
Find out what else he has to say by taking out a subscription to MoneyWeek now.
Transatlantic trade deal off?
The future of the huge and controversial Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership deal (TTIP) between Europe and the USA has been thrown into doubt as the "public mood has turned".
On top of that, it has been "hit by a double whammy", says Simon Wilson in his Investment Briefing, adding to the sense that "this deal may well never happen". Leaked documents seemed to confirm some of the objectors' biggest fears, and France's president, Franois Hollande, announced he would not support the treaty, with his lead negotiator declaring it a "bad deal".
Find out what exactly the TTIP is, what it covers, and just what's so controversial about it with a subscription to MoneyWeek magazine.
Should you buy into Saudi Arabia's giant oil company?
In his City View column this week, Matthew Lynn runs an eye over the floatation of part of Saudi Aramco, the company that controls the exploitation of Saudi Arabia's vast oil and gas reserves. It is, on some measures, the largest company in the world. The flotation would bring in hundreds of millions of pounds to the firms that work on it, it would be a "powerful boost to the City and could keep the bonuses flowing all year", says Matthew. But the City and investors "would be better off avoiding this one", he says. He gives three reasons why.
Ethical investing: good for the soul but is it good for profits?
Capitalism can get a bad rap sometimes. And to be fair, it often doesn't help itself. "Whether it's carmakers faking emissions data, dodgy sales practices at pharmaceutical firms, or banks rigging interest rates, almost every month brings a new financial scandal", says Matthew Partridge in his investment strategy column this week.
The answer for many is "ethical investing". But "while it may be good for the soul", says Matthew, "critics say that it's bad for returns". But how true is that? Matthew looks at various performance measures, and finds evidence that it may be possible to "earn higher returns without compromising your moral beliefs". Find out how, in this week's issue of MoneyWeek.
Golf on the wane, trouble in hedge-fund land, and another hurdle for buy-to-letters
On his shares page this week, Alex Williams asks if golf has gone out of fashion as Adidas enters negotiations to sell its brands. Plus, he looks at a satellite operator that's not flying quite so high any more, and picks a very appropriate gamble of the week.
Elsewhere, Sarah Moore investigates why hedge funds have been going through a "catastrophic time", and Natalie Stanton rounds up the news for investors in property, starting with why investing in buy-to-let is set to get "even trickier".
In travel, Chris Carter picks six of the best country cottages to rent from Northumberland to Cornwall, and we bring you eight of the best properties for sale with mountain views.
Plus much, much more I just don't have the space to mention in this short email.
If this sounds like the sort of thing you'd enjoy, why not take out a subscription now?
Ben studied modern languages at London University's Queen Mary College. After dabbling unhappily in local government finance for a while, he went to work for The Scotsman newspaper in Edinburgh. The launch of the paper's website, scotsman.com, in the early years of the dotcom craze, saw Ben move online to manage the Business and Motors channels before becoming deputy editor with responsibility for all aspects of online production for The Scotsman, Scotland on Sunday and the Edinburgh Evening News websites, along with the papers' Edinburgh Festivals website.
Ben joined MoneyWeek as website editor in 2008, just as the Great Financial Crisis was brewing. He has written extensively for the website and magazine, with a particular emphasis on alternative finance and fintech, including blockchain and bitcoin. As an early adopter of bitcoin, Ben bought when the price was under $200, but went on to spend it all on foolish fripperies.
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