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Mechanics of the market

Efficient markets make money for market participants, but not for market makers. That is something the enthusiastic promoters of B2B exchanges have yet to understand.

Downside of regulation

There are many things wrong with British banks, but contrary to the Cruickshank Report, the fact that they make profits is not one of them.

Spanner in the works

The proposal to extend the Droit de Suite amounts to a subsidy of successful artists by unsuccessful ones.

Tracking the net effect of innovation

A network industry which fundamentally changed the way we live, followed by a speculative bubble: but how much would you have made if you’d got in right at the start with Great Western Railways?

Beating the west at its own game

Commercial success with innovation depends less on the innovations themselves than on the other qualities of a firm. Sony’s use of Bell Labs technology is the classic example.

The myth of excellence

In the black-and-white world of business opinion, Marks and Spencer is now firmly out of fashion. But corporate success depends on establishing and defining one’s own self.

Where size is not everything

Concentration in the car industry is increasing as the market goes global: a common story, and an untrue one.

The car that lost its way

BMW has a chequered history, and if the current management had learned lessons from the past they would never have purchased Rover.

Perennial hits hard times

What makes a successful retailer? It seems that Marks and Spencer may have forgotten the capabilities that put them on top.

Value judgments

Why does water - essential to life - sell for less than diamonds? Any explanation which doesn’t look both at supply and demand will not get you far.

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