Author Archives: Darren Marchal

Global round-up

Caribbean As many attack so-called “tax havens”, Natalie Shaw speaks to Shawna Lake, whose firm SKIPA promote development in St Kitts & Nevis France Companies have been going wrong and being bailed out globally. Liam Vaughan suggests that France is offering less protection for creditors than, say, the UK or the US. Vaughan goes on…

All roads lead to a universal currency

China is worried about the long-term decline of the dollar, mainly because it holds somewhere north of $1,000bn in US government debt. As a Chinese economist notes in a masterly piece of understatement, “a trillion (in greenbacks) is a hot potato.” Several other Asian countries holding vast dollar amounts are worried for the very same…

Launching into turbulent seas

“Banks in Trinidad and Tobago are blessed,” says Sekou Mark. It may be an intriguing statement, given the current global economic crisis to which some of the biggest banks have fallen victim. More intriguing perhaps is that the man making the statement is a banker himself. He is the General Manager of Corporate Banking at…

Commission-sharing provides halfway house

While the UK’s FSA’s rules on unbundling may not have radically reformed the trading landscape, they have subtly altered the terrain. Commission-sharing agreements have become the status quo and the remaining bulge-bracket sellside firms continue to capture the lion’s share of both execution and research business.A split between the two activities as envisioned in the…

Working goals

Size, says Margrit Schmid, is not the only criterion for success. But it does help indicate just how well a company is doing in its chosen marketplace. “In terms of premium volume, we are the leading global employee benefits network,” she says. “While size is not everything, our size does reflect how many multinational companies…

Boutiques and banks clash

When did your banker last recommend against an execution or transaction for which they are being remunerated?” This leading question awaits prospective clients browsing the website of Ondra Partners, one of a new breed of independent boutique offering “unbiased” advice to companies raising equity, debt or making acquisitions.Senior bankers at established underwriting banks get angry…

Dark pools braced for uncharted waters

Dark pools are not the “new black” anymore – they have been in Europe for more than a decade – but recently these esoteric trading systems emerged as the new battleground for European exchanges and their ambitious rivals.Multilateral trading facility Turquoise signed up six customers to a new service that aggregates the liquidity in their…

Europe’s star performers guide clients in turmoil

To describe the past year as “difficult” for traders would be an understatement. The collapse of Lehman Brothers in September unleashed a tidal wave of volatility that sent traders running for cover. Trading strategies were blown apart, the hedge fund industry crumbled and it was touch and go whether the global economy would follow suit….

Checks and balances

The region compensates for its market size and higher risk with better returns, analysts said, with property yields ranging from about seven percent for a prime building in Warsaw’s central business district to about 10 percent in Moscow. This compared well against London where prime offices yielded five percent last year, but as the downturn…

Mercantilism reconsidered

This question constitutes a Rorschach test for policymakers and economists. On one side are free market enthusiasts and neo-classical economists, who believe in a stark separation between state and business. In their view, the government’s role is to establish clear rules and regulations and then let businesses sink or swim on their own. Public officials…