Business Matters-logo

Business Matters


Global business news, with live guests and contributions from Asia and the USA.

Global business news, with live guests and contributions from Asia and the USA.


United Kingdom




Global business news, with live guests and contributions from Asia and the USA.




Will billions of dollars solve global hunger?

Could tens of billions of dollars stop the world’s poorest going hungry? The World Bank is hoping cash will help those hardest hit by global food shortages. But with Ukraine and other conflicts creating a squeeze on exports of key commodities, the UN is calling for a political solution. A landmark deal in the US means women and men will be paid the same for competing in international football tournaments; and we hear about the man taking American fast food giants to court over the size of...


Elon Musk takes aim at bots

Anonymous, fake accounts online are a nuisance at best, and at worst, a threat to safety and democracy. Elon Musk wants to crack down on them in his planned takeover of Twitter, but says he doesn't trust the platform's own assessment of the problem. We hear from one of his personal friends about what it could mean for the deal. Mass inflation continues to cause problems across the globe, from shortages in shops to job losses for farmers in Asia and beyond. Ahead of the upcoming G7 summit,...


McDonald's pulls out of Russia

The fast food giant McDonald's has ceased its operations in Russia, two months after temporarily closing 850 branches across the country. The company said Russia's 'humanitarian crisis' in Ukraine, as well as unstable market conditions triggered by the conflict, are behind its decision to stop selling hamburgers there. The first McDonald's in Russia was opened in Moscow in 1990, and was widely seen as a symbol of western democracy.


The cryptocurrency collapse

Cryptocurrency markets are being rocked after a popular token lost 99% of its value. We get the latest analysis from Anita Ramaswamy of the TechCrunch website. Oil giant Saudi Aramco has overtaken Apple to become the world's most valuable company. Indrajit Sen of the Middle East Economic Digest in Dubai discusses the significance of the shift. Russian shipping company Sovcomflot is reportedly selling off a third of its fleet to pay off some European debts before an EU sanctions deadline...


US inflation slows for the first time in months

Inflation in the US was up 8.3% in April, down from a growth rate of 8.5% in March, hinting that the peak of inflation could be over. We get analysis from our business correspondent Michelle Fleury in New York. Shanghai is introducing new lockdown measures to try and halt the spread of coronavirus. Don Weinland is China business editor for The Economist, and describes the latest restrictions. Also in the programme, the BBC's Rahul Tandon reports on what happens to a country such as Ukraine...


Overturning Roe v Wade 'devastating' to economy, says Yellen

The US Treasury Secretary has said that overturning Roe v Wade, the landmark case protecting abortion access in the country, would have lasting negative effects on the economy. She was speaking to a Congressional Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs when she made the remarks. We speak to Professor Caitlin Myers, an economist from Middlebury College, Vermont, who specialises in reproductive policies. Staying in the USA, President Biden announced tackling inflation would be his...


Philippines Election: Dictator's son heads for landslide win

Ferdinand Marcos Jr, the son of the country's ruler during most of the 1970s, is heading for a landslide victory in the race to replace the current strongman Rodrigo Duterte. Why did voters flock back to the Marcos family, whose reign in the 20th century was so controversial? We speak to Josh Kurlantzick at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, DC. There's been further unrest on the streets of Colombo as the economic crisis in Sri Lanka grows deeper. The Prime Minister has resigned...


Why has the Nasdaq had its worst day in years?

There are warnings inflation will continue to soar around the world, despite the US and UK increasing interest rates. Stock markets have reacted by falling - the Nasdaq has had its worst day for two years. The Philippines are gearing up for hotly contested elections this weekend - we get analysis from our correspondent in the Philippines, Karishma Vaswami. A special report from Sam Fenwick examines how the war in Ukraine has impacted tourism all around the globe. Rahul Tandon is joined...


US makes biggest interest rate rise for 22 years

The US central bank, the Federal Reserve, has raised interest rates by 0.5% in a bid to combat rising inflation, which is currently running at 8.5%. We get analysis from our north America business correspondent Michelle Fleury. And Mitchell Hartmann of the Marketplace programme on American Public Media asks whether we might see a repeat of the 'wage-price spiral' of the 1980s. The European Union has proposed a ban on imports of Russian oil and refined fuel products. Richard Bronze is head of...


Calls for energy windfall tax grow as BP profits soar

Oil giant BP booked bumper underlying profits despite a big loss on its exit from Russia. We explore whether oil firms are likely to face windfall taxes on their profits, after Italy increased such a tax, with Dr Sandy Hager, a political economist at City, University of London. Leaked documents in the US have suggested the Supreme Court could be heading towards revoking the historic Roe vs Wade judgement from the 1970s that legalised abortion in the country. Just prior to that news and the...


EU divided over how to step away from Russian energy

The EU is attempting to agree on a harmonised approach to the continuing issue of oil and gas imports from Russia. Member states' energy ministers have held an emergency meeting. Suzanne Lynch, a reporter for Politico in Brussels, tells us what was on their agenda. The European Commission has accused Apple of abusing it's market position for contactless smartphone payments. Apple denies the charge and has promised to engage with the Commission. We hear more about the the accusations from the...


Amazon shares fall sharply

Amazon has announced its first loss since 2015 due to slowing sales and rising costs; we hear more from James Clayton, the BBC's North America tech reporter. Economic activity in the US contracted unexpectedly in the first three months of 2022. The Harvard economist Professor Ken Rogoff tells us whether it signals a possible recession. Indonesia is the world's biggest producer of palm oil and it's a staple of cooking there but prices there have soared and that has led to street protests so...


China lockdowns hit global shipping

With global supply chains still reeling in the wake of Covid-19 and the Ukraine war, recent lockdowns in China have compounded the situation. Backlogs have become common place on the USA’s west coast, but how has trade there recovered? We get the latest from Josh Brazil of supply chain specialists project44. Plus, the BBC’s North America Business Correspondent Samira Hussain reports from Michigan on Ford’s iconic F-150 pickup getting a fully electric makeover. After Chinese company DJI, the...


Gazprom to halt gas supplies to Poland

Russian company Gazprom says it will halt gas supplies to Poland and Bulgaria from Wednesday morning. Poland currently depends on Russian imports for around half of its gas. The country’s deputy foreign minister Marcin Pzydacz tells us his government was already been prepared for this move. Plus, the World Bank’s latest commodities report makes sobering reading, suggesting that high food and fuel prices could blight the global economy for years to come. We hear from its author, World Bank...


Elon Musk to buy Twitter

Twitter’s board has accepted Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s $44bn offer to buy the social media giant. Dan Primack, Business Editor at Axios, says that those on both the right and the left who have reacted strongly to the prospect of a Musk-led takeover may be getting ahead of themselves. Stock markets around the world have been shaken by fears of further lockdown measures being implemented in China. We hear from residents of Beijing, who tell us they’re not overly concerned by the prospect of a...


CNN axes flagship streaming service

CNN has pulled the plug on its flagship online streaming service CNN+, less than a month after it was launched to much fanfare. CNBC media & technology reporter Alex Sherman has been covering the story and tells us why the fledgling platform failed. Like many economies which reap huge benefits from tourism, Thailand has struggled with a sharp drop in visitor numbers during the Covid-19 pandemic. The government is now trying to woo some of those potential visitors again, but rising...


Germany to halt Russian oil imports 'as fast as possible'

Germany says it is working hard to reduce its reliance on Russian energy. The BBC's Faisal Islam speaks to the German finance minister Christian Lindner. As Tesla releases its Q1 earnings, we get analysis from Dan Ives, senior equity analyst at Wedbush Securities, and ask whether the recent factory shutdowns in Shanghai have had an effect on the company's performance. Satellite broadband is still in its infancy, but more and more people are using the technology to connect to the internet -...


Netflix loses subscribers for the first time in a decade

The company lost 200,000 customers in the first three months of the year. We look at the reasons why with entertainment journalist Caroline Frost, and what challenges the company is facing. The International Monetary Fund expects global economic growth to slow to 3.6% this year. The forecast shaves almost a percentage point of growth from its forecast from before the war in Ukraine, and we get analysis from the BBC's economics editor Faisal Islam. The BBC's Theo Leggett reports from France...


Apple staff make bid for first union at a US store

Workers at Apple's Grand Central Station store in New York have announced a plan to start a union. If their bid is successful it would be the first union at one of the tech giant's US stores. Anna Kramer with the news site Protocol explains the process from here. Also in the programme, China has announced its latest economic growth figures. The NBA's Golden State Warriors team is developing its own entertainment division. And the BBC's Elizabeth Hotson looks into how Covid-19 has changed the...


Elon Musk makes a bid to buy Twitter

Tesla boss Elon Musk has offered to buy Twitter, saying he is the right person to "unlock" the social media platform's "extraordinary potential". In a surprise announcement, Mr Musk said he would pay $54.20 a share for Twitter, valuing it at about $40bn. We get analysis from global tech journalist Chris Stokel-Walker. Nepal says it’s considering declaring a two-day weekend, instead of its Saturday only weekend, as part of measures to reduce the consumption of petroleum products. The BBC’s...