Author: Michael Collins

Michael Collins
Michael Collins

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Recent and archived work by Michael Collins for The Bull:

Why Germany only does the minimum to support the euro

Public disgruntlement stops Berlin cementing a currency union that helps make the country an export dynamo. In September 2008, UK authorities realised troubled mortgage lender Bradford & Bingley could topple the country’s financial system. Belgium-based giant Fortis faced closure. The French administration of President Nicolas Sarkozy was battling to save Franco-Belgian lender Dexia. The German…

The pivotal fight between China and the US is over the microchip

The campaign for dominance in semiconductors could hurt both countries. Japan’s Kioxia Holdings, which in the early 1980s invented flash memory computer chips, was set for one of the country’s biggest initial public offers for 2020. In September, however, the semiconductor maker reduced the asking price of its offer by 25%. Days later, the company…

Japan has trailblazed on economic stimulus, to not much avail

Will Japan under Suga try the reflationary option Abe didn’t? In 2006, 52-year-old Shinzō Abe of the almost-always-in-power Liberal Democratic Party became Japan’s youngest-ever prime minister. In 2007, however, the son of a foreign minister and the grandson and grand-nephew of prime ministers resigned due to ill health. Abe recovered soon enough. In 2012, the…

Brexit talks are about how abrupt the UK’s final break will be

No option removes the existential threats to the UK stirred by its EU departure. The allegations went like this. The now-defunct UK arm of the US political consultancy Cambridge Analytica employed a Russian-born computer whizz to make an app-based survey. The app was placed on Facebook. When 300,000 people used the app, data was secretly…

Super low interest rates come with side effects

Ultra-loose monetary policy could even be counterproductive for economies. Sitting on the desk of Reserve Bank of Australia Governor Philip Lowe most days when he arrives at work are letters from the public. Many are from retirees who have one complaint in this world of low interest rates. “It’s not uncommon for people to say…

US senate result could reverberate for decades

The US senate result could reverberate for decades if under Democrat control the filibuster goes. Any quest to alter the constitutional order would be more proof of how primary contests are destabilising US politics. Mitch McConnell, first elected to the US senate in 1984, became senate majority leader in 2015 when Republicans regained control of…

China and the US are headed towards a ‘decoupling’

But any rupture is likely to fall short of the separation the word implies. (Reading time: 4 min) The ‘Line of Actual Control’ is the name for the unformalised border that separates Indian-controlled and Chinese-controlled territory in the disputed area where the Asian neighbours meet and where in 1962 the pair fought a war. In…

A looming political fight due to the pandemic?

The young will want to be compensated for protecting the elderly from covid-19. But their quest will come with risks Tom Moore of Bedfordshire sought to raise 1,000 pounds to help the UK’s National Health Service cope during the coronavirus pandemic. He decided to walk 100 times back and forth across his backyard of 25-metres…

China: The world’s consumer of last resort

China, rather than the US, could soon be the world’s ‘consumer of last resort’. To earn that status, China must avoid a ‘trap’ among other challenges. La Samaritaine department store in Paris that was founded in 1870 is of such majestic art deco and art nouveau styling it was declared a national monument in 1990….

The populations of key countries are shrinking

This new, yet largely ignored, trend comes with underrated economic and social costs. Released by US film producer Mike Moore and timed for the 50th Earth Day in April, the documentary Planet of the Humans tells how renewable sources of energy are flawed replacements for fossil fuels as a way to mitigate the dangers of…