Spending in the age of Snapchat

Diamonds illustration
©Shonagh Rae

‘One of the most powerful forms of conspicuous consumption today is not the accumulation of goods but the accumulation of memories’

Gillian Tett/Frontline Q&A

The FT and the Frontline correspondent Martin Smith and producer Marcela Gaviria join for a discussion of Money, Power and Wall Street, the special investigation into the struggles to rescue and repair a shattered US economy following the financial crisis, being aired on the PBS network

Trump tax affairs part of bigger concern

Real estate is producing profits, much of which are escaping the tax net

Illustration by Shonagh Rae of a man using the GPS
©Shonagh Rae

We’d be lost without GPS

‘The more we become dependent on this magical technology, the more vulnerable we become, too’

Hackers target weak links

Cross-border security leaves a lot to be desired

Illustration by Shonagh Rae of London and New York
©Shonagh Rae

What New York can learn from London

‘Khan’s election makes me proud of my London origins, not because he is a Muslim but because most voters don’t care that he is’

banknote designs
©Shonagh Rae

How to change the face of Europe

‘Europe today faces a problem: it lacks a clear creation myth with unifying heroes’

How to Trump-proof your portfolio

You would be a fool to base your investment choice on free-market theories alone

Illustration by Shonagh Rae of a female squash player
©Shonagh Rae

The Taliban v the squash champion

‘When the tournament organisers saw her birth certificate she was exposed as a girl — and the Taliban threatened to kill her for the crime of wearing shorts’

What pawnbrokers can teach central banks

Just two American companies are still in the triple-A club; Microsoft and Johnson & Johnson

©Shonagh Rae

Can China turn green?

‘If China could be persuaded to construct energy-efficient new buildings, we might have an effective way of reducing global warming’

How Goldman Sachs became a flattened slug

Is this just a temporary downturn? Financiers certainly hope so

Panama and a new Copernican revolution

‘Most of us vaguely know that money flows through offshore centres… but the Panama Papers have given contours to this fuzzy, offshore world’

Five stars and falling stars

‘China, like Japan, has become a victim of its own success: its economy has matured so fast that it has outgrown its financial structures’

Real-world solution to the tax ruckus

Ever-growing offshore cash piles, endless transatlantic battles and lousy infrastructure suit no one

Hard questions for the Big Easy

‘Part of the reason Louisiana has attracted the movie industry is that artists and writers love to cheer on the post-Katrina renaissance tale’

Inflation enigma needs unorthodox answers

What we need is not just economic analysis of price trends but on-the-ground ethnographic analysis

Dreaming of a better world

‘Endless sleep is the new scarce commodity — and thus a modern “luxury” item that marks out the 1 per cent’

Is everything copy?

Nora Ephron’s hallmark was collecting threads from her own life to weave provocative literary tapestries

Where cyber space meets the Wild West

The baddies behind botnets have an endless supply of cheap guns while citizens have only barricades

Girl scout power

‘Mary Barra of GM, Ginni Rometty of IBM, Sheryl Sandberg of Facebook and YouTube’s Susan Wojcicki were all girl scouts’


Gillian Tett Gillian Tett serves as US managing editor. She writes weekly columns for the Financial Times, covering a range of economic, financial, political and social issues.

In 2014, she was named Columnist of the Year in the British Press Awards and was the first recipient of the Royal Anthropological Institute Marsh Award. Her other honors include a SABEW Award for best feature article (2012), President’s Medal by the British Academy (2011), being recognized as Journalist of the Year (2009) and Business Journalist of the Year (2008) by the British Press Awards, and as Senior Financial Journalist of the Year (2007) by the Wincott Awards. In June 2009 her book Fool’s Gold won Financial Book of the Year at the inaugural Spear’s Book Awards.

Tett’s past roles at the FT have included US managing editor (2010-2012), assistant editor, capital markets editor, deputy editor of the Lex column, Tokyo bureau chief, and a reporter in Russia and Brussels. Her upcoming book, to be published by Simon & Schuster in 2015, will look at the global economy and financial system through the lens of cultural anthropology.

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