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September 29, 2016

Last week in Boston I passed by a place I used to work cleaning dishes in the 1980s. The restaurant/bar, on Boston’s fancy Newbury Street, is still there — which is quite an achievement in a fast-changing industry. As is now the norm in many American bars, the TV is always on. I stuck my head in nostalgically, only to be met by Donald Trump’s angry face on a big screen. More

September 26, 2016

Is it any surprise that the Web Summit decided to head to Lisbon? I am in the amazing Portuguese capital today speaking at a conference. It seems that the entire city has decided that hosting conferences is sufficiently important for the modern brand of the city, that everything is designed to make the attendees feel special. More

September 22, 2016

I have never experienced America so divided. Even in liberal New York, there’s a palpable sense that Hillary is losing it and the horror of a Trump presidency is being entertained by almost everyone. More

September 19, 2016

On Wednesday night, I gave a talk at my old primary school, Johnstown National School in Dún Laoghaire. One of the many interesting questions from the parents of the pupils focused on pensions and what this early-middle-aged group could expect from them. More

September 15, 2016

On Monday, following Hillary Clinton’s pneumonia diagnosis, the bookies dramatically cut the odds that Donald Trump will be the next president of the US. Years ago, Bill Clinton said it was all about “the economy stupid”. But is it this time? If so, let’s have a look at Trump’s economics. More

September 12, 2016

Sometimes it is good to look back at history in order to look forward. Since long before the Apple judgment, I have been trying to figure out what could be the economic model for Ireland in a globalised world of free trade, large-scale movements of people and free capital flows. The Apple judgment simply brings the issue to the fore. It focuses the mind. More

September 7, 2016

Sometimes you could be forgiven for feeling the best qualification to participate profitably in this Irish recovery is not being Irish. More

September 5, 2016

The Apple tax case marks a fork in the road – a moment of choice. It allows us to think strategically, and provides Ireland with an opportunity to think geo-strategically about our next move. More

September 1, 2016

The EU Commission’s ruling on Apple is huge. It will redefine our relationship with the EU and it puts us on to a totally different economic orbit to the rest of Europe. More

August 29, 2016

Every Saturday throughout the early 1960s, a dull drone could be heard over the Colorado plains. The light aircraft flew low, at around 2,000 feet. Inside, the pilot plotted future roads, suburban housing schemes and new business parks. More

Articles

I write two economics columns every week. They keep me sane and hopefully, on my toes – but you can be the judge of that! One appears in the Irish Independent on Wednesdays and the other in the Sunday Business Post every Sunday. I’ve been writing the columns for over ten years now, covering economic, financial, demographic, social and geo-political issues – and all sorts of other things that come into my head, sparked by things I’ve read, people I have spoken to or ideas I have heard, over the course of any particular week.

The world - and Ireland - is changing so rapidly that it’s impossible to run out of things to write about. Since I rarely stop writing, the articles are composed and written in the oddest of places, in bars, on trains, in my office, on buses. You name it, I’ve written in, on or under it.

One of the great joys in the week is reading the responses to my articles in the comments on this site. Thanks so much to everyone who responds, challenges, argues and even blatantly insults! This is what freedom of expression and opinion is all about: two contrasting opinions – a buyer and a seller - make a market and makes for good discussion. Imagine a world where we all agreed?

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