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{ Category Archives } Finance


Regular readers will know that I wrote extensively in 2009 about the HBOS crash with particular reference to the role of the auditors KPMG (here, here, here, here, here, here, and here). More recently, I wrote a short article about John Griffith-Jones (senior partner of KPMG when HBOS crashed) in his new role as chairman […]

Pensions Regulator

[Lesley Titcomb (55), the Pensions Regulator, giving evidence to the joint Select Committee enquiry into BHS. After a classics degree from Oxford and ten years with Ernst & Young, during which she qualified as a chartered accountant, she has spent the rest of her career as a regulator, mainly with the Financial Conduct Authority and […]

Public theatre

Devotees of this column will be familiar with the idea of security theatre: you introduce measures which are of little use in promoting security but which convince an ill-informed public that you are protecting them. We now apparently have a generalisation of the concept in public theatre. I met it over the weekend whilst reading […]

Facebook (=FB)

I last wrote about FB more than 5 years ago. At that time information was relatively sketchy but it seemed to have historic net income of around $0.3 billion but was suffering quite serious technical glitches. A few months later I made some comments about Zuckerberg’s fairly ruthless approach to using tech to get revenue. […]

WebVan Mark 2

Webvan is a strong contender for the biggest dot-com bust ever. In the increasing frenzy of the late 1990s Louis Borders persuaded the boys at Benchmark Capital that he had an even bigger hit (at that point Borders bookstores, which he had founded in 1971, were doing well). It was so exciting that due diligence […]