In September 2014, the FT’s Dan McCrum received a tip about a fast-growing German fintech group, Wirecard. Over the next couple of years Dan and his colleagues uncovered the secret behind the payment company’s meteoric growth: many of the customers listed in company documents did not exist. In this episode Dan tells the story of the whistleblowers, shoe-leather reporting, hacking, suspected surveillance and legal threats that led to Wirecard’s downfall.
Review clips: CNBC, Deutsche...
In the US, commercial mortgage backed securities are a $1.2tn market, and an integral part of how banks lend to commercial property owners. But as the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns changed almost every sector of the economy, commercial real estate has changed too. Hotels and retailers have been hit hard by the shutdown, and mortgage and rent payments they have deferred are coming due. The FT’s Joe Rennison explains what this means for the CMBS market. We also hear from two people who are...
When a Minneapolis police officer killed George Floyd, it was as if a fire was ignited. His death, along with the killings of Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery have sparked the most widespread protests in the US since 1968. Hundreds of thousands of people have marched under banners such as “Black Lives Matter”, “No Justice, No Peace” and “Say Their Names”. Now, the voices of activists are converging around a call to “defund the police”. In this episode, we hear from Rachel Harmon, a professor...
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Last December executives at the Carlyle Group worked into the night to sign what they imagined would be one of the private equity firm’s most enduring deals. In 2020, however, there may be no such thing as a stable business. Carlyle is now trying to walk away from a deal with American Express Global Business Travel before any money has changed hands. Our US private capital correspondent, Mark Vandevelde, reports on the ensuing legal row, and what it could mean for dealmaking during the...
This was supposed to be a record year for the US meat industry. But when coronavirus hit the meat-packing plants, it exposed a vulnerable link in the supply chain. We take a look at how our meat gets from the farm to the supermarket, and ask what the fall in production could mean for the US-China trade truce. With the FT’s Gregory Meyer.
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The Trump administration’s small business bailout programme has been plagued by problems from the start, with complaints that large companies crowded out the kinds of small enterprises and independent contractors it was designed to help. With a fresh round of funding on offer from Washington, we hear from several business owners trying to get their share, as well as the FT’s Lauren Noonan who has been reporting on the programme since it launched.
To get free access to the FT’s Coronavirus...
Mauren Pereira's drapery business was on track for its most financially successful year to date. That was until the coronavirus outbreak reached Virginia. Behind the Money reports on how one small business owner is navigating the current economic crisis. With Brendan Greeley, US economics editor for the Financial Times.
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When credit markets seized up earlier in March, more than 130 companies rushed to their lenders to draw down at least $124bn of emergency credit lines to shore up cash, with Ford and General Motors drawing the largest amounts. We look at how the auto industry is preparing for the economic uncertainty that lies ahead. With the FT's Peter Campbell and Gillian Tett. For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy
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A costly investigation into the conduct of senior UK bankers during the financial crisis has raised questions about what it means to prosecute allegations of corporate crime, and whether Britain’s fraud laws need overhauling. With the FT’s Caroline Binham and Jane Croft.
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More than 10 years on from the early days of the US shale boom, bankruptcy risks are rising across the sector. The FT's US energy editor, Derek Brower, reports on what weak oil prices and tightening access to credit are doing to the outlook for some producers.
Bankruptcy risks rise for US shale (paywall)
US energy sector, shunned by investors, has ‘Pearl Harbor’ moment...
Nearly one year after the grounding of Boeing's 737 Max jet, more than 700 of these planes remain on the ground, with costs to the US manufacturing giant estimated to reach nearly $20bn. The FT's Claire Bushey reports on how the crisis unfolded, and what it will take for the aerospace company to return business as usual.
Boeing tightens its belt as Max crisis drains cash (paywall)
Boeing faces Max hurdle as...
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Earlier this year, Facebook announced its digital currency project, Libra, to great fanfare. Just a few months later, the project has stalled amid pressure from regulators and lawmakers around the world. With the FT's Hannah Murphy and Kiran Stacey.
Where it all went wrong for Facebook’s Libra: https://www.ft.com/content/6e29a1f0-ef1e-11e9-ad1e-4367d8281195
Zuckerberg warns blocking Libra will be boon to China...
A key short term lending market came under strain in September, raising concerns that the Federal Reserve's attempt to unwind post-financial crisis intervention may have gone too far. The FT's Joe Rennison explains what has been going on in the repo market.
How the Federal Reserve could fix the repo market:
Fed wrestles with role of regulation in repo...
WeWork was long considered one of the most anticipated IPOs of 2019. For SoftBank, WeWork’s biggest outside investor, the listing would be the moment it made a return on the nearly $11bn it poured into the shared-office provider. Now, as WeWork struggles to take the company public, the spotlight is on SoftBank’s Masa Son and his billion-dollar bets.
Further FT reading:
SoftBank investors brace for Vision Fund...
The purpose of the US corporation has evolved over time, from Henry Ford's mission to benefit the carmaker's employees to Milton Friedman's essay on shareholder primacy. The FT's US business editor, Andrew Edgecliffe-Johnson, reports on the latest thinking, this time from America's largest business lobby, the Business Roundtable.
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Investors poured $17bn into agricultural food and technology startups in 2018, fuelled by threats to the world's food supply, including climate change and a growing global population. We visit one such startup, Indigo Ag, which is working with farmers to trial its microbial products for healthier crops. Indigo Ag provides microbial seed treatments to farmers for free in exchange for data. The company also sells the seed treatments through its standard commercial model.
With guests Emiko...
Amid concerns about a slowdown in global economic growth, there is one industry telling a completely different story: luxury goods. Aimee goes to Paris to find out why. With guests Harriet Agnew, Paris correspondent for the Financial Times, and Robert Burke, chairman and chief executive of the consultancy Robert Burke Associates. For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy
About 10 years ago, two legendary private equity firms, Apollo Global Management and TPG, teamed up to carry out a leveraged buyout of one of the biggest and most iconic gaming companies, then known as Harrah’s. They financed the purchase by taking advantage of Harrah’s real estate. Now, an obscure regional casino group out of Reno, Nevada is set to scoop up what has become the Caesars Entertainment empire in a deal that is making use of a pretty similar kind of financing. The FT’s Sujeet...
When Fiat Chrysler Automobiles withdrew its proposal for a €33bn merger with France’s Renault it reversed plans to create what could have been the world's third-largest carmaker. The FT's David Keohane, Leo Lewis and Rachel Sanderson tell the story of how the bid came together, how it eventually fell apart and what it means for the future of global carmakers. For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy
Over the past 54 years, shares in Berkshire Hathaway have outpaced the broader market. But now the conglomerate is holding onto more than $100bn in cash that it would rather be investing. The FT's Eric Platt guides us through the Berkshire Hathaway operation, and how its 88-year old chairman and chief executive is thinking about the company's future. Read more at FT.com.
What it means for a generation of tech companies with huge valuations to be making the shift to the public markets, and why some are doing it by unconventional means.