Vikas Shah MBE Interviews the world's leading thinkers, and the people shaping the century.

Money and Human Development

In these exclusive interviews we speak to Prof. Jacques Attali (Former adviser to President François Mitterrand, first president of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and ranked as one of the top 100 public intellectuals in the world) and Dr. Tilman Ehrbeck (CEO of the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor – CGAP). We discuss the state of financial inclusion globally and look deeper into how microfinance, technology and other instruments are working to eradicate poverty and bring opportunity to billions worldwide.

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An Interview with Larry Hatheway, UBS Chief Economist

Guest article written for AllAboutAlpha.com – the official publication of the  Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) Association Originally posted at: http://allaboutalpha.com/blog/2012/02/23/the-euro-crisis-an-interview-with-larry-hatheway-ubs-chief-economist/ In September 2011, the IMF estimated that roughly half of the Euro Zone’s $9 trillion in outstanding government debt was now at ‘heightened credit risk‘.   This is a crisis which billionaire investor George Soros has described as, “…a more dangerous situation now than in 2008,” (which is further contextualised when you realise that Bank…

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Is Life our Greatest Natural Disaster?

Sometimes a change in perspective is important. World War II was a turning point for our civilisation.  This was a war which left a mark on most of our planet’s inhabitants, and saw more than 40 million people killed in just 6 years.  Even now, half a century later, this war (marked by the holocaust and eventually the first conflict use of a nuclear device) makes people stop and think.  Some of our world’s greatest…

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The Huge Threats to our Financial Markets

Guest article written for AllAboutAlpha.com – the official publication of the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) Association Originally posted at: http://allaboutalpha.com/blog/2012/02/16/james-rickards-on-the-huge-threats-to-the-financial-markets/ One of the most astonishing revelations of the past decade has been how little we really understand about risks in our financial markets. The ‘once in a thousand year‘ events which previously inhabited the extreme end of the left-tail are (increasingly) manifesting in our markets leaving devastating consequences. Just because we don’t know much…

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The Role of Brands in Human Culture

In these exclusive interviews, we speak to Professor Philip Kotler (S.C. Johnson & Son Distinguished Professor of International Marketing at the Northwestern University Kellogg Graduate School of Management and described as ‘the most influential marketer of all time’) and Martin Lindstrom (Chairman and founder of Buyology Inc, who was voted one of the World’s 100 Most Influential people by Time magazine). We discuss the nature of ‘brand’ and ‘branding’ together with the role branding plays in our economic and social world.

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The Role of Addictions in Human Culture

In this exclusive interview, we speak to Professor Griffith Edwards, CBE (A world expert in alcohol and drug addiction) who founded the National Addiction Centre, served as Editor in Chief of the Addiction journal and is Professor Emeritus of Addiction Behaviour at Kings College London. We discuss the role of drugs in society, and examine the social, economic and political implications of drugs use for the future of our world.

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Do Hedge Funds Work?

Guest article written for AllAboutAlpha.com – the official publication of the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) Association Originally posted at: http://allaboutalpha.com/blog/2012/01/26/do-hedge-funds-work/ “…If all the money that’s ever been invested in hedge funds had been put in treasury bills instead, the results would have been twice as good…” This is the astonishing finding of Simon Lack in his book “The Hedge Fund Mirage“. With almost $2 trillion in assets under management (AUM), the hedge fund industry…

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The State of Global Ultra-Wealth

Guest article written for AllAboutAlpha.com – the official publication of the  Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) Association Originally posted at: http://allaboutalpha.com/blog/2012/01/12/the-state-of-global-ultra-wealth/ The 2011 World Ultra Wealth Report (published by intelligence provider Wealth-X) describes how, “…the fortunes of the world’s ultra high net worth (UHNW) individuals have surpassed $25 trillion“.  This is an astonishing figure, made even more so when  contextualised against the value of the entire world’s economic output (GDP) which, in 2010, was ‘just‘ $63…

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Investing in The .Com Giants

Guest article written for AllAboutAlpha.com – the official publication of the  Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) Association originally posted at: http://allaboutalpha.com/blog/2012/01/05/alpha-hunters-generating-alpha-from-com-giants/ The internet has changed the face of commerce.  JP Morgan’s 2011 Internet Sector Outlook conservatively predicts a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) for global eCommerce of 19.4% from 2010-2013 (from around $572 billion to over $970 billion).  To put that in context, DataMonitor’s Global Retail Industry Guide showed that between 2005-2009, global retail showed…

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Solving the Euro Zone Crisis

In my June 2011 article “Is it Time to Rethink Sovereign Debt” I described how, “…in our globalised economy, no country is an island.  Every nation has internal debt (owed to lenders within a country- often that countries citizens or banks) and external debt (owed to foreign lenders- often other countries, or large international financial institutions) and the numbers are staggering.  According to figures published in the CIA world fact-book, the USA has external debts…

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