Editor's Picks

In this week's essential reading guide Kohler explains why derivatives should just be banned, Gottliebsen augurs a downturn in Queensland's coal boom, Bartholomeusz finds a silver lining for BHP and Hartwich explains why a devalued euro won't fix anything.

Derivatives should just be banned
Alan Kohler
Most derivatives trading involves creating risk from thin air and gambling on it. And one New York fund manager warns the structure, now worse than in 2008, will collapse again if something isn't done.

Light dims on BHP's Queensland coal boom
Robert Gottliebsen
BHP’s metallurgical coal mining costs in Australia are rising sharply, just as an African star is emerging. In a year or two, Queensland's great coal boom will be curtailed.

Blind-sided BHP's mega lucky delays
Stephen Bartholomeusz
The rate of change in external circumstances blind-sided BHP Billiton and its peers. The silver lining is that the change came soon enough to prevent unaffordable mega-projects from being set in motion.

A devalued euro will solve nothing
Oliver Marc Hartwich
A group of economists propose devaluing the euro to solve Europe's problems. But devaluation would have no effect on intra-eurozone trade – instead it would blow out German imbalances.

The Coalition’s NBN policy is madness
Alan Kohler
Malcolm Turnbull should face facts and accept the NBN as it stands. Opposing the rollout will be both expensive and political folly.

Alan Kohler's NBN fantasy
Malcolm Turnbull
A move to FTTN does not require major revisions to the Telstra deal, and arguments about a "two tier internet access regime” fundamentally misunderstand the nature of the internet.

Qantas struggles through a cloud of unknowns
Stephen Bartholomeusz
Given the year Qantas has had, it's surprising today's loss – the first since privatisation – wasn't worse. Breaking even by 2015 will be an enormous task.

Did China just hit the panic button?
Stephen Koukoulas
Yesterday's record intervention by the Chinese government to push down interest rates is the strongest sign yet of a Chinese slowdown. The RBA must pay attention.

China rebalances for a sustainable future
Michael Pettis
After many false starts, there is now evidence that the long-awaited, and much desired, Chinese rebalancing – where consumption reels in investment as the engine of growth – has finally started.

The Coalition's running out of hot election issues
Rob Burgess
As the carbon tax, IR and 'debt and deficit' arguments lose potency for the Coalition, Malcolm Turnbull's broadband battle will become increasingly important.

Is Tinkler about to fall from the horse?
Daniel Palmer
Nathan Tinkler's foray into horse racing was ambitious from the start. Now, after five years and relatively little success, it's on the brink of failure.

Tinkler's paper palace tumbles down
Robert Gottliebsen
Like many before him, Nathan Tinkler has confused paper wealth with cash in the bank. Now he must do an about face, Holmes a Court style, to salvage what he can.

Packer gives News a sporting chance
Cliona O'Dowd
With a ConsMedia-News Ltd deal expected within weeks, James Packer will have taken another step away from his family's old empire. And News will be closer to pay TV sporting mastery.

Politics by the rich, for the people
Michael Gawenda
Modern politics has become farcical. Instead of sensible debate, the public is increasingly force-fed fantasies based on the slimmest of facts.

KGB: CSL's Brian McNamee
Kohler, Gottliebsen & Bartholomeusz
Departing CSL chief Brian McNamee outlines his company's rise as a global pharma leader and explains the opportunities for Australian research.

Seven questions for the RBA
Stephen Koukoulas
The note printing scandal will likely dominate Friday's meetings between politicians and Reserve Bank chief Glenn Stevens. There are far more important issues to debate.