Unlocking innovation on the path to financial market regulatory reform – Download from Davos

World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos

Five years on from the onset of the global financial crisis, it’s plain to see that regulatory reform efforts at the national and regional levels have diverged presenting an urgent need for a coherent and coordinated response from regulators. Given the risk that regulatory divergence poses, it’s no surprise that this key issue was high on the agenda at the World Economic Forum in Davos last week.  I joined one of the more interesting discussions on this topic in a working group meeting consisting of heads of banks, asset management firms, insurance companies, rating agencies and government representatives – all of whom ardently discussed the impact of regulation on innovation. (more…)

Video highlights from the 2014 World Economic Forum Annual Meeting

John McCain

We had it covered at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos this year, providing live and packaged TV and video coverage for more than 600 television stations, and their affiliated networks, around the globe. Our custom-built state-of-the-art studio built in the local town library hosted world leaders, policymakers, top CEOs and influential thinkers. Davos Today, produced by the Reuters Digital Video team, was the official television program of this high-powered event.

If you missed any of it, watch some of the highlights below plus catch up on all the Reuters coverage on Reuters.com/Davos. (more…)

Davos Diary: Friday


By Susan Phemister, Thomson Reuters

Friday dawned with a light dusting of snow in Davos. It’s been uncharacteristically lacking in snow this year, with pavement shining through the normally thickly packed snow. Davos roads are not salted (to preserve the crystal clear mountain water), so boots with treads and ideally ice crampons are de rigueur for any kind of walking.

Last night’s hot ticket Google Party featured Mary J. Blige in an dazzling performance, while the competing McKinsey Nightcap was also packed to the gills.

In addition to our hopping Reuters News activity, we must not forget that there was a full program running in the Congress Center that also included our executives. Jim Smith was a panelist on the “Designing Corruption out of the System” panel. Steve Adler was a group participant in the “Risk & Responsibility in a Hyper-Connected World”, while Rob Cox moderated “Money and Markets in a Hyper-Connected World”.

Additionally, David Craig published an wrote a post on this very blog titled, “What’s next in disruptive technology and innovation in financial services.”  Monique Villa also wrote a post on corruption and slavery.

More World Economic Forum coverage: (more…)

Slavery, the darkest face of corruption

REUTERS/Jumana El Heloueh

Last month I met a man whose life had been entirely shattered by corruption. He had lost everything he had: his family, his friends, his freedom. He had become a slave.

This man was lured to another country, far from home, with the promise of a good-paying job as an office clerk. To make the trip and to pay the intermediary, he took a loan. Upon his arrival, instead of being handed an office badge, he was forced to hand over his passport, and was dragged into the world of modern-day slavery.

The job he had been promised never existed. He was suddenly in debt, far away from home and unable to leave. He had no option but to start working as a construction worker to repay the loan he had taken. (more…)

Davos diary: Thursday


By Susan Phemister, Thomson Reuters

Thursday at Reuters Davos exploded in a flurry of interviews on the show Davos Today. Goldie Hawn talked to Axel Threlfall about her foundation work. Jeremy Bennett, CEO of Nomura International, taped an interview, as did Christian Meissner of Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Carlos Ghosn, the head of Renault-Nissan and Drew Gilpin Faust, the president of Harvard.

Shortly after our morning show wrapped, Boris Johnson, Mayor of London, came by for the Global Markets Forum and an interview. Afterwards on the main Promenade, he joked that he loved our very visible Reuters ski jackets, trying one on while onlookers snapped away.

The day was still young however, when Greenpeace pulled up immediately in front of the Reuters building with a truck of red-jacketed protesters, realistic polar bear suited actors, and anti (Russian) Gazprom signs. The Greenpeace activists, protesting Russian oil extraction, poured red-colored bloody looking oil on the bears as they writhed horribly on the ground. Photographers and news crews poured onsite, snapping photos, bringing instant notoriety to the cause.

Barely had the polar bears packed and cleaned up when more news action happened back in the Reuters building. Ruth Porat, CFO of Morgan Stanley and arguably the most powerful woman on Wall Street, arrived for her interview with Breakingviews’ Rob Cox at the same time as Senator John McCain (R-AZ), causing a logjam of importance at the espresso machine.

More World Economic Forum coverage: (more…)

What’s next in disruptive technology and innovation in financial services – Download from Davos

Regulation and technological innovation are among the key subjects being hotly debated both on and off the official agenda at the 43rd annual World Economic Forum which kicked off in Davos this week. These topics were especially scrutinized during the WEF’s Disruptive Innovations in Financial Services working group meeting on Thursday. This group, of which I am a member, includes a small number of senior representatives from leading banks, insurers, wealth and asset management firms and financial organizations. (more…)

Heard (and seen) around Davos: Thursday

reuters team

Some of the most interesting, provocative and salient quotes we heard around the 2014 World Economic Forum: (more…)

Davos diary: Wednesday


By Susan Phemister, Thomson Reuters

Wednesday kicked off with a Thomson Reuters/WPP breakfast. Moderator Rob Cox, editor of Reuters Breakingviews, hosted a panel discussion featuring football legend Ronaldo, Microsoft’s Mark Penn and WPP CEO Sir Martin Sorrell. Rob stepped the panel nimbly through a number of topics from football to data protection, featuring a surprisingly eloquent Ronaldo and consummate observer Sir Martin Sorrell, commenting that MIT’s 3D printing is very hot for the US future. (more…)

Heard (and seen) around Davos: Wednesday

Davos Today

Some of the most interesting, provocative and salient quotes we heard around the 2014 World Economic Forum:

“We need banks that are not just sound, but unquestionably sound” – Paul Singer, Elliott Management

“I see a future in which each man, woman and child can bask in the sun of freedom” – Swiss President Burkhalter

“Japan’s GDP could grow by 16% more, if women participated in labor as much as men” – Prime Minister Shinzo Abe

“The excitement about the BRICs is gone. Dull and Old Western economies are back” – Nariman Behravesh, Chief Economist at IHS

“Art is no crime. It’s every artist’s responsibility to make art that is meaningful” – Shirin Neshat

Here are some pictures (full album here) taken by our correspondents to give you a sense of what it’s like on the ground in Davos: (more…)

The day before Davos


By Susan Phemister, Thomson Reuters

Once a year, this ski resort town in Switzerland transforms itself from a chic but sleepy resort into the world’s hub of business, politics, and intellectual idea-swapping that is the World Economic Forum.

The advance teams have been trawling up the mountain since last week, staking claims on rented buildings and transforming them into mini-business lounges emblazoned with logos and window clings. Thomson Reuters takes over the Davos Library, removing all books in an assembly-line of Swiss labor and off-duty ski instructors and filling it chock a block with a TV studio, journalists, a planning team and meeting rooms. Bright orange banners advertising the daily Reuters show Davos Today blanket this traditional Swiss Haus, while spotlights  light the front and sides into an Orange Crush wash.

New this year is the preponderance of pop-up reception spaces mushrooming across the main street, the Promenade, in every possible prime real estate location. Thomson Reuters executives arrived today, preparing for a full four days of networking, meetings, talks and amazing evening receptions.

Stay tuned for more to come in the Davos Diary…

More World Economic Forum coverage: (more…)