A 'Knowledge' based economy

Today the Irish Times had an article about an American University opening a college here, in Dungarvan Co. Waterford. It occured to me that the Island of Saints and Scholars could do with trying to encourage this type of investment if we are to truly become a ‘knowledge economy’. In creating centres of excellence it is vital to ensure that the best research and advancement is happening in a certain place, in I.T. that may be Silicon Valley, in Finance the City of London prevails.

Harvard University Professors are not paid millions, rather they teach there for prestige. With Universities such as Trinity and our strong heritage of learning (if you want an interesting take on our written word tradition a book called ‘How the Irish saved civilization‘ is fascinating) there is no reason we should not see more universities wanting to locate here and have …

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A ‘Knowledge’ based economy

Today the Irish Times had an article about an American University opening a college here, in Dungarvan Co. Waterford. It occured to me that the Island of Saints and Scholars could do with trying to encourage this type of investment if we are to truly become a ‘knowledge economy’. In creating centres of excellence it is vital to ensure that the best research and advancement is happening in a certain place, in I.T. that may be Silicon Valley, in Finance the City of London prevails.

Harvard University Professors are not paid millions, rather they teach there for prestige. With Universities such as Trinity and our strong heritage of learning (if you want an interesting take on our written word tradition a book called ‘How the Irish saved civilization‘ is fascinating) there is no reason we should not see more universities wanting to locate here and have …

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The curse of 'F' words.

At the moment we are seeing two ‘F’ words which are inflating rapidly, namely, Food and Fuel.

In todays post we will look at the positive effects of fuel and food prices shooting through the roof, and how people can turn this to their advantage. Fuel prices have really shot up in the last year, in fact a year ago the fuel prices were in the mid $50 per barrell range and at this point an analyst from Goldman Sachs (Arjun Murti)had said that we would see $100 a barrel oil soon and he was laughed at, then it came true and suddenly Mr. Murti went from ridiculed to divinity.

Then the man who seems to be able to predict the future went on the record talking about $200 a barrel oil and that sent a shiver down the spine of every oil consumer. In 2005 there were …

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The curse of ‘F’ words.

At the moment we are seeing two ‘F’ words which are inflating rapidly, namely, Food and Fuel.

In todays post we will look at the positive effects of fuel and food prices shooting through the roof, and how people can turn this to their advantage. Fuel prices have really shot up in the last year, in fact a year ago the fuel prices were in the mid $50 per barrell range and at this point an analyst from Goldman Sachs (Arjun Murti)had said that we would see $100 a barrel oil soon and he was laughed at, then it came true and suddenly Mr. Murti went from ridiculed to divinity.

Then the man who seems to be able to predict the future went on the record talking about $200 a barrel oil and that sent a shiver down the spine of every oil consumer. In 2005 there were …

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What are the best mortgage rates? Mortgage Interest Rates explained.

What are the best Irish mortgage rates? What are interest rates and where do they come from? These are all good questions and in today’s post I hope to answer some of them.

Often I find that people call me and ask ‘what’s the best rate’ and then there is silence on the other end of the phone as they await an answer. The truth is that at any given time there is a ‘best mortgage rate’ out there, but normally there are restrictions surrounding it which inhibit the ability for most borrowers to avail of them.

We have come out of eight rate hikes which began at the end of 2005, and in an upward rate market people often feel that their old loan has become expensive, in fact it’s not necessarily the case that the ‘old loan’ is exceptionally dear, its that the rate market has gone up and therefore the cost of all loans has gone up, when we talk about the greater ‘debt burden’ that’s what we are referring to, because car loans, higher purchase, leases, …

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ECB release half a Trillion just in case…

The ECB released a further 500 billion, Bank of England 10 billion and the Fed 20 billion This was done as a follow on the the USA’s liquid injection rather than rate cut, the idea is to lower interbank rates, increase liquidity and at the same time not promote inflation.

Thankfully and historically we are seeing a trend here. The Fed, ECB, Canadian Central Bank, Bank of England and the Swiss Central Bank all acted in unison, traditionally this was not the case and its great to see that internationally we can start acting in a global way in a global world. Prior to this we acted in a national way in a global world, central banks didn’t refer to eachother before making a move.

All the banks with the qualifying collateral could buy from the ECB at 4.21% which is what the old Euribor was, this will mean that the people selling from euribor rates will only be able to sell to institutions which don’t qualify for this money, it may also mean that the people who are most …

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Credit Freeze and the effects on the ECB

The credit markets in the U.S.A., Asia, and Europe are in the midst of a freeze at the moment. Banks are not willing to lend to each other hence the big hike in the Euribor (European inter bank ordinary rate: this is the rate that banks lend to each other at) rates and in the U.K. the Libor (London inter bank ordinary rate) rates, they are trading much higher than the central bank rates and this indicates that there is (to a degree) a general mistrust between banks, mainly because they don’t know the exposure to sub-prime exposure the other may have.

The response thus far has been a Fed rate cut, this came a little late, and the indication is that Ben Bernanke will cut the rates again within the next week. Earlier in the year (March 28th) Bernanke claimed that ‘the impact on the broader economy & financial markets of the problems in the sub-prime market are likely to be contained’. Later in June he again re-iterated that there was not a strong chance of a spill-over into …

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