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Multinational Corporations & Pleonexia (Tax-Dodging)

Daily-Mail headline today: Google and the £6billion Bermuda tax shelter: Web giant’s haven revealed as Cameron urges global crackdown The ancient Greeks had a word for it – pleonexia – which means an overreaching desire for more than one’s share. Aristoteles named pleonexia as one of three forms of injustice. Zuberbühler Associates advises corporate clients against elaborate unethical tax-dodging as the likelihood of a sharp backlash is rising and will…


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Fusing Client Ideas With Our Passion Towards Wealth Management

George Bernard Shaw wrote, “If you have an apple and I have an apple and we exchange apples, then you and I will still each have one apple. But if you have an idea and I have an idea and we exchange ideas, then each of us will have two ideas.” This is the approach that employees at Zuberbühler Associates bring to each meeting with a client. Many clients have…


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Banks: Racing Cars vs Horse-Drawn Carts

Another spot-on quote from the NYT bestseller “Start-Up Nation” highlighting why certain banking cultures see more bank failures than others: As Israeli financial analyst Eytan Avriel put it, “Israeli banks were horse-drawn carts and U.S. banks were racing cars. But those racing cars crashed badly whereas the carts traveled more slowly and strayed on course.” In a nutshell: If you’re doing 160mph with a formula 1 race car on a…


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Private Economy A Thin Man Carrying A Fat Man (Government)

Favourite passage of “Start-Up Nation”, a NYT Bestseller, by Dan Senor & Saul Singer; Netanyahu told us, “I explained to people that the private economy was like a thin man carrying a fat man – the government – on its back. While my reforms sparked massive nationwide strikes by labour unions, my characterisation of the economy struck a cord. Anyone who had tried to start a business in Israel could…


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Libor: How traders affect final calculated and published rate

Circumventing safeguards in place to protect published Libor rates from manipulation: Q: I’m still missing something here. I know these markets pretty well. The procedure required by BBA, in place since the 1980s, involves removing the highest and lowest quotes and averaging the rest. So (a) numerous banks contribute to the average, and (b) any outliers are removed before calculating that average. I appreciate the large notionals involved. But how…


What a terrible long-term investment real estate has become…

“There is an iron law of house prices. The more house prices relative to income and rents, the more they will subsequently fall”  / quote “Boomerang”, written by Michael Lewis. “Real estate bubbles never end with soft landings. A bubble is inflated by nothing firmer than people’s expectations. The moment people cease to believe that house prices will rise forever, they will notice what a terrible long -term investment real…


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Proof Google Has In Fact Dropped “Don’t be evil” In Practice?

Robert W. Johnson who founded Johnson & Johnson in 1886 set the following important credo (in 1943), that Google chairman Eric Schmidt has very recently spat at: “Our fourth responsibility is to the communities in which we live. We must be a good citizen – support good works and charity, and bear our fair share of taxes. We must maintain in good order the property we are privileged to use.[…]”…


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Why Novartis Equity Performance Has Been Lagging

I started reading a book called “Built To Last” I picked up on a recent trip to NYC. On page 47 the following paragraph struck me: Quote from George Merck II: “[We] are workers in industry who are genuinely inspired by the ideals of advancement of medical science, and of service to humanity”. The  CEO of Merck, P Roy Vagelos sang the same idealistic tune: “Above all, let’s remember that…


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Which Industries In Switzerland Are Doing Well

This graph by the EZV (Eidg. Zollverwaltung) published this morning shows the yoy change of different industries in percentage terms for the month of October 2012. The figures are skewed to the positive side due to two extra working days.