Understanding our animal spirits

Prof Shiller (remember him from “Irrational Exuberance) has partnered with George A Akerlof in a strangely titled new book: Animal Spirits. I’m recommending it even before reading it. It’s basically about why we don’t behave as rational consumers when faced with economic choices. If you don’t want to wait, then there’s an excerpt from the …

ANZ’s tragic teller system

First you dub an application as “Platinum” – critical to your business. That’s a good idea, so you now know you need to get the system and support absolutely right. You choose to run a trial before rolling it out to all branches – another good idea. However that’s where things started going wrong for …

Dick Smith sale still three times more expensive

It’s nice that Dick Smith have a 15% off everything sale, however I am simply not interested in shopping there any more. Dick Smith are meant to be a cheap place to get electrical and electronic kit, but they seemingly abandoned that cause a while ago, and are now selling products to unsuspecting consumers at …

Xero’s capital raising

Staggering. While I still believe that Xero’s IPO was expensive, I also believe in the business opportunity and how Xero is going about pursuing it. While the latest round of share issues at $0.90 is dillutive to the original $1.00 IPO,  it is an excellent price nonetheless: The IPO was expensive – and that was …

Getting the basics right makes money – Ascent

Yesterday I went shopping for a laser printer. I went to Pricespy and Trade Me, along with Ascent where I have successfully purchased before. Pricespy sent me to a few stores, including Ascent, but I will pick on Computer Direct who came back  as the cheapest. They have a good url, but they are not …

How to blog anonymously

As we progressively lose our freedoms on the internet, it was timely to have a read of some of the excellent material written by Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society – it’s part of the Harvard Law School and has the delightful url of cyber.law.harvard.edu – as it was started from a seminar …

Trains, buses and cars – we need them all

A nice rant by Bernard Hickey against the rushed Auckland electrification decision. I’m not arguing with him on the rushed aspect, nor on the specifics of this particular decision, which seem to be remarkably absent. However the comments have unveiled a cars versus buses versus trains versus whatever war. Let me copy my comment on …

Why living in NZ sucks, and how you can profit

I want another power cable for my Zumo motorcycle GPS unit. It’s so I don’t have to rip the one out of my KTM here in Perth, which gives me the option of doing an epic KTM sand tour again later this year. So I Googled “Zumo Power Cable”, and find DirectDepot – a US …

Blame directors for failure, CEOs for success

Fairfax (Reuters) belatedly opines that Directorships are not a reward, but actual work. It’s an article based on US companies, but is applies to every jurisdiction. I absolutely agree – a directorship is a very serious obligation. I propose a simple philosophy Blame the Board of Directors for failed companies Credit the CEO and management …

Powershop saves me 32.5% at the moment

So Powershop lowers switching costs, but as you can see from the headline it also lowers actual costs. So how much can you save? If you are like me – then a lot. I was using Contact, who like the other companies, charge in two ways – cents per unit consumed (kWh) and a service …

#blackout – is self regulation the answer?

Here is a commentary on the change to the copyright act, section 92A, and the #blackout protest. Its by my father, Glen Wiggs, who is a lawyer and ex-head of the Advertising Standards Authority, a  self-regulating organisation here in NZ.  Dad is currently the Adjunct Professor of Advertising Regulation at Sunshine University, and an expert on …

Bad news for Cricket: Sponsor Standford is being investigated

Via the WSJ it appears that Stanford International is under investigation: Stanford International Bank Ltd. of Antigua recently failed to provide some $16 million in funding to a small Florida telecommunications firm, while a small Alabama health-care firm said it was unable to complete a roughly $62 million merger after funding fell through.  ….The disclosures …

How bad things get when it’s only the brand

There is very little you can say to defend this leaked (I hope) report on Pepsi’s new logo (big pdf). Go and read it if you have not already – it will affect you in some way. I felt ill. A few snippets to show just how far removed Pepsi’s branding people are away from …

It’s the products not the brand

A timely find – a viral video about Trader Joes – a small USA chain of food stores that are lots of fun to shop in. The products at Trader Joes are high quality – and that is especially relevant in the USA where (Whole Foods aside) it’s all to easy to buy processed rubbish. and from …