AUTHOR

Simon Wilson

Why our rickety internet infrastructure needs an upgrade
Global Economy

Why our rickety internet infrastructure needs an upgrade

The internet is an increasingly essential part of international infrastructure. Recent events have shown that it is also vulnerable to collapse.
19 Jun 2021
The G7’s global corporation tax: bringing Big Tech to heel
Tech stocks

The G7’s global corporation tax: bringing Big Tech to heel

The G7 group of nations has agreed to potentially historic changes in the way multinational companies are taxed. Who wins and who loses?
12 Jun 2021
The government says it wants to build more houses – but will it?
UK Economy

The government says it wants to build more houses – but will it?

As PM, Boris Johnson is pushing through reforms that should make it easier to build more houses. As a local MP, he opposes such plans. Which of these …
7 Jun 2021
Britain's rail industry is being revamped. Here is all you need to know about it
UK Economy

Britain's rail industry is being revamped. Here is all you need to know about it

After more than a year of waiting, the UK's government's white paper on the future of the rail industry is finally out. Simon Wilson explains everythi…
27 May 2021
Why Joe Biden’s Big Pharma patent grab is a terrible idea
Biotech stocks

Why Joe Biden’s Big Pharma patent grab is a terrible idea

The US president has proposed waiving patents on Covid-19 vaccines in a bid to boost global supply. But it won’t work on its own terms and holds dange…
22 May 2021
Central bank digital currencies: the future of money
Currencies

Central bank digital currencies: the future of money

The rise of cryptocurrencies and a move to cashless payments during the pandemic have left states and central banks playing catch-up. Are new forms of…
14 May 2021
Is Britain’s “green revolution” realistically achievable?
UK Economy

Is Britain’s “green revolution” realistically achievable?

Boris Johnson is hoping to claim global leadership on the climate issue by committing Britain to an accelerated programme of emissions cuts. Is this…
8 May 2021
The SNP’s record in Scotland: how does it stack up?
UK Economy

The SNP’s record in Scotland: how does it stack up?

The SNP has been in power in Scotland since 2007, and the country is going to the polls again. So how has it performed?
1 May 2021
Greensill, Cameron and the return of Tory sleaze
UK Economy

Greensill, Cameron and the return of Tory sleaze

The collapse of Greensill Capital threw a spotlight on political lobbying when it emerged that former PM David Cameron had been fighting its corner. J…
17 Apr 2021
What China’s new red dawn means for Hong Kong
Chinese economy

What China’s new red dawn means for Hong Kong

China has once again moved to tighten its control over the former British territory and global financial centre. What will remain of the old Hong Kong…
10 Apr 2021
Does nuclear power have a future?
Energy

Does nuclear power have a future?

Fears about safety have long hobbled the industry, particularly in the wake of Fukushima ten years ago. But the fears are overplayed and net-zero carb…
3 Apr 2021
How the vaccine wars will harm us all
Global Economy

How the vaccine wars will harm us all

Grabbing and hoarding vaccine supplies, or even manufacturing one’s own, might seem to make sense for a state in an emergency. But the damage done to …
27 Mar 2021
Britain's £37bn test and trace system: did it do any good?
UK Economy

Britain's £37bn test and trace system: did it do any good?

Britain built a system for testing for Covid-19 and tracking down contacts from a standing start – at a cost projected at £37bn. Why so expensive? And…
20 Mar 2021
What's behind the collapse of Greensill Capital, and why does it matter?
UK stockmarkets

What's behind the collapse of Greensill Capital, and why does it matter?

A financial company involved in opaque products that repackaged loans has gone into administration. Is there a bigger systemic risk here?
13 Mar 2021
Can China hold the world to ransom over access to rare-earth metals?
Industrial metals

Can China hold the world to ransom over access to rare-earth metals?

China’s stranglehold on rare-earth minerals – resources essential for our modern high-tech world – has some analysts worried. Should we be too?
6 Mar 2021
How Big Tech was humbled Down Under
Tech stocks

How Big Tech was humbled Down Under

An Australian law forcing tech companies to share their profits with news organisations is a crucial test of the evolving power relations between gove…
27 Feb 2021
Yet another big shake-up for the NHS – will this one do any good?
UK Economy

Yet another big shake-up for the NHS – will this one do any good?

The government plans to “take back control” of the health service, ending the market-based reforms and reintroducing central command and control. Is t…
20 Feb 2021
Can the government's proposals fix the residential cladding crisis?
Property

Can the government's proposals fix the residential cladding crisis?

In the wake of the Grenfell fire disaster, many homeowners have been left stuck with huge bills to make their properties safe. The government is stepp…
13 Feb 2021
How long will it be before the world is vaccinated?
Global Economy

How long will it be before the world is vaccinated?

The vaccine rollout is going well in the UK, and in some other countries. But ultimately, this is a global problem, and the situation worldwide is not…
6 Feb 2021
The looming global battle over semiconductor supply
Tech stocks

The looming global battle over semiconductor supply

A shortage of semiconductors – essential components in electronic devices – has spooked businesses and governments. It could even spark future geopoli…
30 Jan 2021
The Arab Spring ten years on: a revolution that failed to blossom
Global Economy

The Arab Spring ten years on: a revolution that failed to blossom

Ten years ago, the Arab world was rocked by mass protests and popular uprisings that ousted long-reviled dictators. For the most part, the end result …
23 Jan 2021
Leasehold reforms promise the end of a nightmare for many homeowners
Property

Leasehold reforms promise the end of a nightmare for many homeowners

Horror stories about unscrupulous landlords profiting from a legal relic of the feudal era are about to get a happy ending, says Simon Wilson.
16 Jan 2021
Brexit deal: what's changed between Britain and the the EU
UK Economy

Brexit deal: what's changed between Britain and the the EU

After years of wrangling and political scraps, Britain is now outside the EU and has secured a free-trade agreement with the bloc. So what’s changed?
9 Jan 2021
How Asia's RCEP deal has brought the return of free trade
Global Economy

How Asia's RCEP deal has brought the return of free trade

While Britain and the EU struggle to come to terms, 15 Asia-Pacific countries quietly signed the biggest free-trade deal in history. That’s a welcome …
25 Dec 2020
Britain mulls a wealth tax again – can it ever work?
Tax

Britain mulls a wealth tax again – can it ever work?

A Covid-19-ravaged government needs to raise more revenue and some propose that a wealth tax could fit the bill. It’s unlikely to happen, but one way …
19 Dec 2020
Should Britain really be cutting foreign aid now?
UK Economy

Should Britain really be cutting foreign aid now?

Faced with a black hole in the public finances, chancellor Rishi Sunak has targeted the foreign aid budget. Is he right to do so? And will it save us …
5 Dec 2020
Donald Trump’s next moves
Donald Trump

Donald Trump’s next moves

The outgoing US president is deep in debt and he will need new sources of income now that he is out of a job. Don’t expect him to go quietly, says Sim…
28 Nov 2020
US states declare a ceasefire in the war on drugs
Global Economy

US states declare a ceasefire in the war on drugs

With US states decriminalising the use even of hard drugs, and legalising the recreational use of cannabis, this could be the beginning of the end for…
21 Nov 2020
Is the BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine the big Covid-19 breakthrough?
Biotech stocks

Is the BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine the big Covid-19 breakthrough?

A vaccine that appears so far to be safe and effective is making its way through the final trials before commercialisation. There are reasons to be ch…
12 Nov 2020
Britain’s green revolution: can we become carbon neutral by 2050?
Renewables

Britain’s green revolution: can we become carbon neutral by 2050?

The prime minister is laying out plans that will see carbon emissions reduced to net zero by 2050. Do they make sense?
7 Nov 2020
Trump’s economic legacy
US election

Trump’s economic legacy

If the polls are right, Donald Trump will not be president of the United States for much longer. But right or not, what did he manage to achieve in th…
29 Oct 2020
The US clampdown on firms “spoofing” the markets
US stockmarkets

The US clampdown on firms “spoofing” the markets

American regulators are slapping record fines on firms that cheat the markets using techniques such as “spoofing”. Even tougher action looks to be on …
24 Oct 2020
Will fintech change the face of banking?
Alternative finance

Will fintech change the face of banking?

Fancy new apps have become popular for everything from making a payment to buying insurance and shares. Should the big banks be worried? Simon Wilson …
17 Oct 2020
The riskiest election in US history
US election

The riskiest election in US history

Donald Trump’s illness has rattled markets as investors try to understand the implications of an incapacitated American president or a bitterly contes…
8 Oct 2020
Why it’s not worth recycling plastic
Global Economy

Why it’s not worth recycling plastic

For decades, consumers have been led to believe that recycling plastic saves on waste. Unfortunately, it’s not true, says Simon Wilson. And that could…
3 Oct 2020
What's behind Britain's coronavirus testing disaster?
UK Economy

What's behind Britain's coronavirus testing disaster?

Britain’s system of testing for the virus that causes Covid-19 collapsed just when we needed it most. What went wrong?
26 Sep 2020