Long Weekend Reads

For the profit and pleasure of subscribers, here's a few longer reads on political, economic and social issues for your long weekend.

The future of work is a hot topic now and will be for years to come. US unionist Andy Stern talks here in this Vox article about why we need to plan for a future without work, and of the need for a Universal Basic Income.

"I believe a UBI is a way to ease the transition, and it's also a way to provide a floor for people — not necessarily a substitute for work, but a supplement to work that allows them to have a sense of economic security, have consumer buying power. We want to allow people to be entrepreneurs, to take risks and raise kids and do other things without turning the world into the Hunger Games," he says.

Otmar Issing, one of the economist/central bankers behind the creation of the Euro, reckons the single currency is now unsustainable, in this enlivening Ambrose Evans Pritchard piece.

"One day, the house of cards will collapse,” said Professor Otmar Issing. “Realistically, it will be a case of muddling through, struggling from one crisis to the next. It is difficult to forecast how long this will continue for, but it cannot go on endlessly," he told the journal Central Banking in a remarkable deconstruction of the project.

Elon Musk has a huge reputation and ambition, but here's a Bloomberg BusinessWeek piece that takes a long, hard look at his track record on delivery. It's not so flash.

There's been a few big speeches from central bank Governors in the last week, including this one from Janet Yellen talking about running the US economy past the red line (a "high pressure economy") to generate some inflation and exit velocity. Her Deputy Stanley Fischer was more hawkish about the need to take the punch-bowl off the table in this speech. There's obviously a tough debate going on ahead of a potential rate hike in December.

Have a great weekend.