Experimental feature

Listen to this article

00:00
00:00
Experimental feature

This article is from today’s FT Opinion email. Sign up to receive a daily digest of the big issues straight to your inbox.

Since the 1980s, the US Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (known as Cfius) has examined the national security implications of foreign investment coming into the country. As a rule, it has tended to favour the potential benefits of such deals, over any foreseeable risks. But something has shifted, writes Rana Foroohar in her column. New rules passed by Congress, with bi-partisan support, have given more power to the Department of Defense and the intelligence community in assessing whether deals can go ahead.

The new law will make it much harder for Chinese businesses to invest in the US and for American companies to put money into China, says Rana. It marks a new attitude on the part of the US government towards control over American business. Expect chief executives to be spending more time in Washington mounting charm offensives — not just at the Treasury but at the White House and the Pentagon too.

Eugene Rumer explains that opposition to the Nord Stream 2 pipeline — whether from Donald Trump, his opponents in the US or his critics in Europe — makes no sense. Fears of Russian domination are unfounded.

François Delattre, the French ambassador to the UN, and his German counterpart, Christoph Heusgen, argue for a Franco-German partnership that will fight to preserve multilateralism in the UN Security Council as the US drifts away from working with others.

David Swensen, chief investment officer of Yale University, argues that the New York Stock Exchange, once a not-for-profit enterprise, is putting its own interests ahead of investors' by prioritising services to frequency traders.

What you’ve been saying

The English dislike any form of obligation— letter from John Temple Lang, Donnybrook, Dublin

Robert Armstrong says that the British dislike anyone telling them what to do. In fact the English (the Scots are different) dislike any obligations, even those that they have agreed to accept. Since the Reformation, they have avoided obligations by making ambiguous agreements, which they can interpret in one way, knowing that the other parties understand them quite differently. This explains why the EU regards the English as unreliable.

Comment by MyCutiePie in response to Small victories in the battle to counter bogus vaccine claims

Part of the problem is that people don't think in terms of probabilities. Of course vaccines can cause problems but the risk is very low, whilst the risk from the diseases they prevent us from is much worse. They also don't think in terms if populations - if one person is not vaccinated the risk for them of getting a disease is fairly low but if everyone does not get vaccinated then the risk becomes very high.

Marijuana and the mind— letter from Peter Wagstaff, W Yorks, UK

Misha Glenny says that marijuana hardly ever causes death, and that it causes far less harm to the human body than does alcohol. He does not, however, mention marijuana’s link to schizophrenia. Surely mental health matters too?

Today’s opinion

Opposition to Nord Stream 2 makes no sense for America or Europe Fears of Russian domination through gas sales ignore earlier pipeline projects

NYSE is putting its own interest ahead of investors’ Exchange’s opposition to an SEC high-frequency trading study is selfish and mistaken

France and Germany will fight to preserve multilateralism Success requires all UN Security Council members — notably the US — to work together

New investment rules will squeeze US-China flows Corporate America will be forced to rethink its approach to overseas deals

FT View

The FT View: Social media must curb extremists and abusers Action against Infowars is only the start for Facebook and Twitter

The FT View: Iran bows under growing economic pressures Tehran would serve its people better by changing its behaviour

The Big Read

The Big Read: Can Mongolian copper power the green revolution? To meet demand miners will have to operate in countries difficult to navigate

Get alerts on Opinion when a new story is published

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2018. All rights reserved.

Follow the topics in this article