BBC Funding

I have taken an interest in the BBC’s financial balance of trade on Intellectual Property. Their annual report can be found here … while the National Audit Office undertook a landscape review on their commercial services.  The annual report is a typical haven’t we done well and getting the answers to the questions I am asking is very hard, almost as if they’re hiding it. Here are some notes. Continue reading “BBC Funding”

Fragment on machines

I think I’ll try and get to grip with this, but Marx is very hard read. I am also particularly interested in his views on General Intellect, it seems he agrees that software should be free, but then he also thought that workers should run the state. The fragment on machines is part of the Grundrisse. Here are my notes: Continue reading “Fragment on machines”

Modern Monetary Theory

I wrote about this on my blog, in an article called Modern Monetary Theory and returned to it over the last couple of hours. While I attributed it to Bill Mitchell, the papers I quoted and subsequent google searches point to L. Randall Wray and others. Wray’s book, Understanding Modern Money: The Key to Full Employment and Price Stability is dated 1998.  Continue reading “Modern Monetary Theory”

UK Immigration

I was thinking about the Brexit vote and the way that Immigration came to dominate the debate; there were a couple of factually based articles which examined the numbers, and some economic analysis which argues that like a deficit, immigration is a good thing. Anyway, despite the fact that evidence is of no use in a post truth environment, I decided to have a look at the figures. It’s also a good opportunity to repeat Luke Sorba’s joke, that Socialists treat immigration as the Victorians did sex, we know it happens but don’t want to talk about it. Here are my notes. The number of economic migrants coming to the UK from the EU over the last 5 years is under 30,000 p.a. Given the amount of noise made by the outers,  I was expecting the numbers to be much higher. Is this really accurate i.e. have I made a mistake? I’d be grateful for any comments. (It looks like my numbers are 10% of others, so I need to check this out.) When I say, I’d be grateful for comments, I’d be grateful for comments on my methods. Continue reading “UK Immigration”

Banking Regulation Reform

I was pushed to look at some of the Banking Regulation reform performed by the last government. My focus was to look at the Vickers aka Independent Commission on Banking and the legislative response. The key proposal is practical measures to protect domestic savings from foreign risk by de-merging or separating the retail and investment banking arms of the large banks. The next stage in this article would be to collect comments/link around the adequacy or otherwise of the timetable for adoption and the politics behind it. The Banking Reform Act was passed in 2013. Continue reading “Banking Regulation Reform”

Estimation Errors

Is there any theory that talks to human optimism or pessimism when making estimates in the context of contracts. I have worked with project managers who when estimating effort & duration look to counter the uplift applied by people who think they’re going to have to do what they’re estimating and will be treated more harshly for being late than early. There’s some type I & type II error stuff here. I think it also applies to risk probability estimation, the cost of not reserving and the reputation damage to the assessor (of under estimating) may both lead to an over-estimate being made.

Surowiecki, in wisdom of crowds states that the betting exchanges (and books) are accurate estimators more so than opinion polls because people have measurable stake in the decision.

Has anyone written about this?

Annuities, a note on price theory

While researching my articles on the UK 2014 budget, I wanted to write a quick note on Annuity prices, yields and interest rates, I came across nothing easy to find, but did come across these,

There is a companion wiki article on the UK 2014 Budget.

A loan involves a bank giving someone a wedge of cash in exchange for an agreed periodic payment.

An annuity involves a bank giving someone an agreed periodic payment in exchange for a wedge of cash.

They are the same thing! So we should be able to price them the same way.