Morning Briefing Global Edition

The Misplaced Bully Pulpit

Where's the bully pulpit? Source: dpa
When it comes to the auto industry, Germany's transport minister seems to have lost his voice.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    • My Handelsblatt Morning Briefing Global Edition gives you an overview of the most important news from Germany and Europe – in a concise two-minute read.
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  • Facts

    Facts

    • Pfizer and Allergan’s plan to move the headquarters of their joint venture from New York to Ireland would have slashed income taxes from 35 percent to 12.5 percent.
    • A German government probe has found that only VW was guilty of diesel emissions rigging.
    • Daimler supervisory board chairman Manfred Bischoff’s contract was extended another five years yesterday.
  • Audio

    Audio

  • Pdf

U.S. President Obama yesterday closed a tax loophole that drug makers Pfizer and Allergan were counting on for their mega-merger. They planned to move headquarters from New York to Ireland to slash income taxes from 35 percent to 12.5 percent.

But Obama blew the whistle, calling the trick “one of the most insidious loopholes out there.” That just goes to show that, even in times of globalization, government can still be a strong player. And companies are learning a deal is only good if society benefits too.

 

The results of the German motor vehicle authority’s investigation into Dieselgate have been seen by our newspaper – and there’s no doubt about it: Only Volkswagen – not other automakers – manipulated emissions data to pull one over on U.S. and other regulators.

But strangely, Germany’s transport minister, Alexander Dobrindt, has gone mute, promising only to “carefully review and scrutinize the findings.” Now, there may be reason for restraint, but the Bavarian is no shrinking violet when it comes to beefing about refugees or the E.U. When it comes to the powerful German auto industry, Dobrindt has lost his bully pulpit.

 

Now, there may be reason for restraint, but the Bavarian is no shrinking violet when it comes to beefing about refugees or the E.U.

Swiss police searched UEFA headquarters yesterday under “suspicion of criminal mismanagement and misappropriation.” The allegedly underhanded practices fall under the jurisdiction of FIFA’s new boss, Gianni Infantino, and were first revealed in the “Panama Papers” leak last weekend.

Now members of the sporting association are falling like dominoes. It looks like this leak is so big, the only option is to abandon ship.

 

Muslim countries may have faced the brunt of terror attacks but their image in the world has not been spared. In a Handelsblatt survey of people across the G20 countries, Turkey and Saudi Arabia came in last place globally as “likeable.” Indonesia, the country with the largest Muslim population in the world, was ranked third-to-last.

In all three countries, local citizens rated themselves as the most “likable” nation. Handelsblatt Global Edition’s story “Self-Assured but Unloved” gives you all the details.

 

It looks like this leak is so big, the only option is to abandon ship.

Smoking has fallen out of fashion among young people in Germany. According to a new analysis by the federal office for health education, eight in ten teenagers have never even lit up. At least that’s one risk our kids can control in a world of wars, terrorist attacks and climate change.

 

Daimler supervisory board chairman Manfred Bischoff’s contract was extended another five years yesterday. The unprecedented move came as a surprise – but is testimony to Bischoff’s vast experience, friendly demeanor and good networking skills. Once, when an employee tattled on a co-worker for getting his hair cut on company time, Bischoff said to go easy. His reasoning: “His hair was growing on company time too.”

 

My Handelsblatt Morning Briefing Global Edition is an e-mail newsletter sent to your inbox at around 6 a.m. Wall Street time. It gives you the most important news from Germany and Europe, commented by Handelsblatt Publisher Gabor Steingart.

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