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BBC Business Daily


The view from the top of business, presenting a clearer view of the business world, through discussion with people running companies.

The view from the top of business, presenting a clearer view of the business world, through discussion with people running companies.
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The view from the top of business, presenting a clearer view of the business world, through discussion with people running companies.




The billionaires who want to pay more tax

Liesel Pritzker Simmons and her husband Ian Simmons are billionaires who come from successful US business families. Liesel's family is best known for founding Hyatt hotels. Both say the the US government should be collecting more tax from super-rich people like them. We asked them why. And Dr Ted Klontz, associate professor of practice and financial psychology at Creighton University in the US, explains the psychology of a billionaire. (Photo: A gold Ferrari parked outside an expensive...


Who wants to be a billionaire?

Should the richest be taxed out of existence? Manuela Saragosa hears from Emmanuel Saez, a US-based French economist advising US presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren on a wealth tax targeting the super rich. The arguments against taxing billinaires more come from Chris Edwards, an economist at the libertarian Cato Institute in Washington DC. (Photo: Bill Gates and Warren Buffet at an event in 2017, Credit: Getty Images)


Fake me an influencer

The murky world of fake Instagram followers, fake comments, fake likes. Edwin Lane turns to the dark side in his quest for more followers for his Instagram account, with help from Belgian artist Dries Depoorter. Evan Asano from the influencer marketing company Mediakix describes how a mass following of bots almost landed him a marketing deal, and Andrew Hogue, founder of a company called Authentique, explain how artificial intelligence is being used to spot fake influencers. (Photo:...


Make me an influencer

How hard is it to make money on Instagram? Ed Butler hears from successful influencer Laura Strange, who makes a living from her Gluten-free food themed profile, and the BBC's Edwin Lane tries to become an influencer himself, with advice from Harry Hugo co-founder of the influencer marketing agency Goat, and Marie Mostad, influencer expert at the platform (Photo: Instagram logo displayed on a laptop. Credit: Getty Images)


The Cambridge Analytica whistleblower

Brittany Kaiser was one of the whistleblowers who brought down her former employer, Cambridge Analytica. She helped to expose how the data analysis firm had collaborated with Facebook to profile millions of voters around the world, in order to target them with tailor-made propaganda. In an extended interview, she tells the BBC's Jane Wakefield how our data is still open to abuse by those seeking to undermine democracy by manipulating the way we vote. (Picture: Brittany Kaiser in Washington,...


The world's youngest Nobel-winning economist

Esther Duflo discusses her work on the economics of poverty, for which she won this year's Nobel prize, along with her husband Abhijit Banerjee and co-author Michael Kremer. The 46-year old French-American MIT economist is the youngest person ever to be awarded the prize, and only the second woman. Ed Butler asks her how she and her collaborators examined how people in poverty respond differently to economic incentives, and her views on how her profession could benefit from being less...


A hydro-powered Bitcoin boom in Georgia

How hydroelectric dams are powering cryptocurrency mining on the eastern edge of Europe. Ed Butler travels to Georgia to visit the Bitcoin mines benefiting from cheap electricity and tax benefits. (Photo: A hydroelectric dam on the Inguri River in Georgia, Credit: Getty Images)


Tweaking your face

How social media is fueling the modern cosmetic surgery industry. The BBC's Regan Morris visits a Botox party in Los Angeles and Sarah Treanor investigates a cosmetic surgery industry event in London. Researcher Matt van Dusen from Alliant International University in San Diego discusses what the rise of cosmetic surgery tells us about how our identities are being defined by social media. (Photo: Botox treatment, Credit: Getty Images)


The cancer scammers

How social media is being used to target cancer patients with fake cures. Tamasin Ford hears from cancer bloggers dealing with a flood of 'snake oil' salespeople. A former naturopathic doctor Britt Marie Hermes gives the inside story. British chemist and Youtuber Miles Power and researcher Corey Basch from Willian Paterson University in New Jersey describe how social media algorithms are facilitating the scams. (Photo: Pills and capsules on a keyboard, Credit: Getty Images)


The diverse economy of the Lone Star State

Texas is the second-largest state economy in the United States and if it were a country it would be the 11th largest in the world. Although it produces more oil than any other state in the US, Texas is rapidly becoming known for renewable energy and a vibrant tech sector. Professor John Doggett at the University of Texas at Austin explains just what Texas is doing right. At the same time, the state retains a lot of its tradition, as Elizabeth Hotson finds out at the Texas State Fair. And...


Can airlines pivot fully to biofuels?

As pressure grows on airlines to reduce their climate change impact, and “flight shame” grows among people concerned about their own impact, ever more research is being put into alternative, “cleaner” sources of fuel. Katie Prescott travels to Oslo to see new projects to bring more so-called biofuels into the system. Air BP’s commercial development manager, Tom Parsons, explains the difficulties in implementing and costing biofuels, while Dr Andrew Welfle at the University of Manchester...


Goodbye Super Mario

This week marks a changing of the guard at the European Central Bank, one of the world’s most important financial institutions. The bank, under the stewardship of outgoing president Mario Draghi, was instrumental in averting a collapse of the Euro earlier in the decade, as the BBC’s Andrew Walker recounts. Now, with former IMF Chairman Christine Lagarde on her way in, veteran bond buyer Mohamed El-Erian says there will still be an uphill battle to keep the currency stable. One issue in...


A meatless future?

The food we'll be eating in the future may look the same, it may even taste the same, but it may well have been grown in a lab. In today's programme we're talking volcanic fungi, eggless scrambled eggs and meat that doesn't come from an animal. But will it all get past regulators and fussy eaters? Manuela Saragosa and Regan Morris investigate the California companies involved in the race to replace the meat we eat. (Photo: Non-meat burgers from Beyond Meat, Credit: Getty Images)


Industry awards - worth the effort?

Does coming second in a prestigious professional competition still boost the bottom line? Is it worth the time, money and emotional investment? Manuela Saragosa visits Pied-a-Terre, a one-star Michelin restaurant, and speaks to its owner David Moore about what it would mean to him and his staff if they could regain a second star. Plus Sam Jordison of the small independent publishing house Galley Beggar Press tells of the joy, sales lift and resulting logistical nightmare of printing more...


What is the Green New Deal?

The radical plan to transform the economy and tackle climate change has taken off in Washington DC, with the backing of the left-wing Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, as well as most of the Democratic candidates for the US presidency. But what is the plan? Manuela Saragosa speaks to Saya Ameli Hajebi, a 17-year-old spokesperson for the Sunrise Movement of young people lobbying for action, as well as to one of the plan's original authors, British economist Ann Pettifor. And Ms Pettifor...


Bringing Uber back to Earth

Investors are losing faith in Uber's promise of rapid growth and market disruption, and are demanding to see actual profits. Oracle's founder Larry Ellison has gone as far as to describe the transport app company as "almost worthless". Manuela Saragosa speaks to Scott Galloway, professor of marketing at NYU Stern School of Business, who says the company's problem is that it is a great brand and great app that have been built upon a fundamentally unprofitable market - ride hailing. Meanwhile...


The business case for sleep

The demands of the working day and our 24-hour economy mean many of us don't get the recommended seven to eight hours sleep a night. Experts say all that sleep deprivation comes at an economic cost. Manuela Saragosa looks at the business case for sleep. Contributors: Danielle Marchant, Executive Coach. Matthew Walker, Professor of Neuroscience and Psychology at the University of California, Berkeley, and founder and director of the Center for Human Sleep Science. (Picture: Tired young...


Is the sun setting on Saudi oil?

Is the Saudi state oil company Aramco finalising its much-delayed share offering just as financial markets are losing faith in the future of fossil fuels? Manuela Saragosa speaks to energy geopolitical analyst Indra Overland, who says that the transition to electric vehicles could happen much faster than expected, posing a direct threat to what is the world's biggest oil company. Meanwhile Andrew Grant of the think tank Carbon Tracker says that big institutional investors are beginning to...


Concrete's dirty secret

Cement and concrete have one of the biggest carbon footprints of any industry, and eliminating it is no easy task. By volume concrete is the most heavily used resource by humanity apart from water. Our houses, offices, dams, roads, airports and so on all depend on pouring vast quantities of this magical, versatile material. But not only does making cement - the glue that binds concrete - involve huge amounts of energy. The chemical process itself also produces carbon dioxide as a bi-product,...


How China slam-dunked the NBA

Does the China-NBA bust-up mean that the Chinese are falling out of love with US basketball - and US business in general? One thoughtless tweet in support of Hong Kong protestors by Daryl Morey, general manager of the Houston Rockets Basketball team, has kicked off a diplomatic storm, with Chinese TV stations cancelling the planned airing of NBA exhibition basketball games. It certainly reflects a much more prickly, nationalistic mood in China at a time when the country feels under attack...