Is France the sick man of Europe? | Sam Bowman argues NO in City AM

Executive director of the ASI, Sam Bowman, argued against France being the 'sick man of Europe' in City AM, although he pointed out that France still has significant downfalls with regards to the labour market:

France may not be the sickest man in Europe, but by any normal standard the country is in deep trouble. The reform package announced by Francois Hollande is better than nothing, but only just.

Read the full article here.

Senior fellow Tim Worstall discusses the steel industry on BBC 5 Live

Tim Worstall, a senior fellow at the ASI, was on BBC 5 Live discussing the decline of the UK steel industry, following Tata Steel's decision to cut another 1050 jobs this morning.

"The underlying problem is that we recycle much more iron and steel now than we used to, and this is a technological change that's been a century in the making. The plants that are having the big job losses are blast furnace sites. If you recycle more iron and steel, then you need fewer blast furnaces."

"We won't help anybody by saying no actually we're going to keep this blast furnace that we don't need anymore"

Listen to the full clip here (Starts 00:16:00)

Press Release: Oxfam's wealth inequality stats are deeply misleading

For further comments or to arrange an interview, contact Head of Communications Kate Andrews: | 07584 778207.

Commenting on Oxfam's latest inequality report (An Economy For the 1%), Head of Research at the Adam Smith Institute, Ben Southwood, said:

Oxfam is once again misleading everyone with its punchy wealth inequality stats.

By Oxfam's measures, the poorest people in the world are recent Harvard graduates with student debt piles. The bottom 2bn don't have zero wealth, but rather about $500bn of negative wealth. The poorest person in the world is richer than the next 30% put together. Having negative wealth may actually be a sign of prosperity, since only people with prospects can secure loans.

But there is a bigger issue with the narrative: more meaningful measures show greater equality. Those in the middle and bottom of the world income distribution have all got pay rises of around 40% between 1988-2008. Global inequality of life expectancy and height are narrowing too—showing better nutrition and better healthcare where it matters most.

What we should care about is the welfare of the poor, not the wealth of the rich."

Notes to Editors:

The Adam Smith Institute is a free market, libertarian think tank based in London. It advocates classically liberal public policies to create a richer, freer world.

Sam Bowman's letter regarding CEO pay features in the Independent

Executive Director of the ASI, Sam Bowman, has had his letter discussing CEO pay featured in the Independent.

It simply does not make sense to compare the rate of growth in CEO pay and firm value, as Ben Chu does ("Think the market is always right when it comes to top pay? Think again", 11 January).

A CEO on an annual salary of £1m could be given an extra £1m pay rise after raising her firm's value by £1bn, from £100bn to £101bn. Comparing the 100 percent growth rate in her salary with the 1 per cent growth rate in the firms value will not tell us anything useful about whether she is being paid fairly.

Has Obama proved a failure as President? | Kate Andrews argues YES in City AM

Head of Communications and research associate at the ASI, Kate Andrews, took part in a debate piece for City AM on whether Obama has been successful or not in his role as president. Kate argues that his failures regarding healthcare and his numerous foreign policy blunders are two of the main reasons he has not been successful.

As a senator, Obama promised “hope” and “change” on the campaign trail in 2007. But as President, he has presided over some of the worst gridlock Washington has seen. His pledge to unite the parties was quickly voided when he pushed through the Affordable Care Act in a direct attempt to avoid any deal with Republican leaders.

Eight years later, Americans look to elect a new leader to solve the problems Obama failed to address, and to fix the problems he has created.

Read the full debate here.