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Taxes explained in the bar

I received an email with this great story which you may have seen but, just in case, is worth sharing here. How do taxes work? Suppose that once a week, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to £100. If they paid their bill …

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Top Tips for Tradeshows

Ok, it’s my final work day before jetting off for the annual jamboree that is SIBOS. This year’s SIBOS has three themes: regulation, recovery and rebuilding trust. So, let’s explore these briefly. And, just in case you are not going to SIBOS, you might learn something too as these are …

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Beware the Faster Payment

Now I get faster payments. Reason: I made one and screwed it up. The other day I was online, doing banking stuff and, as Her Majesty Revenue & Customs (HMRC) Tax Office is forcing all of us to start doing things online, I sent in my VAT declaration electronically. No …

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Something wicked this way comes

George Osborne

I guess it's the role of citizens of any country to suffer their supposedly democratically voted leaders, and the role of the media to take the mickey out of them. Now I'm not especially political, but was a little concerned to see this photograph of our esteemed Chancellor George Osborne …

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Dear Mr. Hurd, how to avoid being an asshole (UPDATE)

For much of my professional life I’ve worked for large American corporations. It wasn’t until last weekend that I realised why these corporations were so dysfunctional. The realisation came about because of Mark Hurd’s resignation as CEO of Hewlett Packard, and it just so happened that I used to work …

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Swiss bank implements major austerity measures


Walking through the City yesterday, I stumbled across a real jamboree of people just by Liverpool Street. Really weird.  Lots of stalls selling food and loads of people queuing for what seemed like hours to get some of it. What's going on?  This is not normal. Ahhhh … it's just …

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The Girl Who Messed Up The Bank

We've been lucky enough to receive the outline opening pages of the fourth instalment of the Millennium series.  These are the books about Lisbeth Salander, the Girl with the Dragon Tatto who Played with Fire and Kicked the Hornet's Nest. The pages from the fourth book are only a little …

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“I’ve just dropped a Santander”


That's the new refrain reverberating along the tweets of the twitterati, after Mark Webber's celebrations were marred by the unfortunate placement of the sponsor's logo:   Thanks to Tabloid Prodigy for the piccie, and Jack Schofield for pointing this one out.

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The ginger whingers

ANZ in Australia has been subjected to an assault over their latest ads being anti-bank staff.  The ads use Gingis Khan Barbara as a role model of bank service.  Having watched the ads four or five times now, they're just very funny.  Here's my favourite: Having said that, they do …

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Why Spanish banks are risky


Walking around the lovely city of Santander, I was pleased to find a Santander bank branch in Santander. Isn't it just a lovely looking branch? Now Santander (the bank) is a bank that heavily promotes taking risks in this branch, which surprised me. Admittedly, it's taking calculated risks but, if …

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The post-holiday reality blues

Perthshire Chronicle1

So, it’s just a couple of days since returning to work and I’m already fed up. My PC’s decided not to load licensed and paid for Adobe apps. It tells me to reload and then won’t accept the paid for licence number. Then my iPhone fell on the floor and …

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Pay me nothing or I’ll take you to court

A true story … A man received a bill for his as yet unused credit card stating that he owed £0.00. He ignored it and threw it away. In April he received another and threw that one away too. The following month the credit card company sent him a very …

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Ozzies debate the root of all evil

Only in Melbourne could they come up with the idea of getting six comedians to debate whether money is the root of all evil. The occasion was the 20th Annual Great Comedy Debate at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival 2009.  Although a year old, I only just caught it on …

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This year’s best cartoons …


I'm an irregular reader of Prospect Magazine. It's a great UK publication that focuses on political and economic essays on current affairs, with most of this month's writing about the elections and its implications. One of the best things in the mag is its A-list cartoonists.  As a monthly they …

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Accenture’s marketing team strikes again


After Tiger Wood’s disastrous PR with golf clubs wrapped around teeth, Accenture had to rapidly come up with a new campaign to reignite their brand. So I arrive at Heathrow this morning and here it is: Brilliant. Inspired. Bodacious. Not. Quantum leaps are all well and good, but my immediate …

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