21 December 2018 FT — Articles to Read

21 December 2018


Question: According to MSN: Money, what are five (5) hacks to prevent falling into credit card debt?


Japan considers quitting international whaling body – Pg. 3

–          Japan is considering a withdrawal from the International Whaling Commission so it can resume commercial hunts, in a move that would mark a fresh breakdown in international co-operation

–          …IWC’s moratorium on commercial whaling, which has been in place since 1986

–          Japan was infuriated in September when anti-whaling nations, including Australia and the Us, along with the EU, rejected its proposal for reform of the IWC.  The Japanese plan would have created a committed to set catch limits for “sustainable” whaling. Tokyo argues the IWC has departed from its original purpose of managing whale stocks and become solely about conservation

–          Japan has used a clause in the IWC moratorium allowing it to conduct so-called “research hunts” in the Southern Ocean and then sell the resulting whale meat

–          Norway and Iceland, which catch whales in defiance of the IWC moratorium, are founders of the North Atlantic Marine Mammal Commission, an alternative management body for whaling


Shares slide highlights Fed challenges – Pg. 3

–          The resulting stock market slide – the S&P 500 dropped as much as 2.3%, marking the worst fall following a Fed rate rise since 1994 – will have come as unwelcome news to a central bank that has been unwitting contributor to volatility in recent months


Student finance distortions show what is awry with official figures – Pg. 13

–          Six years ago, the UK’s coalition government revolutionized student finance, shifting the burden of tuition costs dramatically from the state to the individual.  Maximum tuition fees were tripled from 3,000 to 9,000 (sterling) and grants to universities were correspondingly cut

–          There is no functioning market in degrees since it is almost impossible to know the quality of a course in advance.  (Prof Note: Let us publish the balance sheets of finance professors!  If one cannot build personal wealth, how can one possibly have the hubris to believe they can teach others?!  Students could select professors with the largest personal balance sheets in finance rather than a list of degrees which, unless able to build, protect, and transfer personal wealth to other(s), are meaningless in finance!)

–          …galloping grade inflation has helped student rebellion

–          With further education not having the same accounting advantages, it has faced savage cuts, forcing young people too often to choose unsuitable degree courses when a technical qualification would have been better


M&A dives in Q4 as corporate confidence ebbs – Pg. 18

–          Dealmaking has decelerated rapidly from the record pace seen at the start of 2018, ….

–          The slowdown follows a turbulent stretch across global stock markets

–          Global M&A activity was driven by mega deals in 2018, as corporate boardrooms around the world made big bets in an effort to boost revenue growth and better compete against a new tide of digital disrupters across all industries


Answer: (1) Give yourself a 72-hour rule on big purchases and impulse buys; (2) Pay off charges right away; (3) Don’t save your credit card info on shopping sites; (4) Find an alternative when you feel like shopping; (5) Don’t finance expense with your credit card