Jeremy Clarkson's ousting, Britain enters "noflation": What got us talking this week

Emma Haslett
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The departure of Zayn Malik from One Direction caused tears - and a spike in Spotify plays (Source: Getty)
It was a week of departures: Jeremy Clarkson was finally ousted by the Beeb (he’s now 16/1 to stand for Ukip), Zayn Malik caused untold pain among teenage girls (and a certain amount of glee at Spotify, which capitalised from a “sadness spike”) when he announced his departure from One Direction, and ITV bosses revealed its biggest money-spinner, Downton Abbey, will go below stairs one last time.

What got City A.M. talking this week

1. Britain entered "Noflation", with zero per cent inflation - causing public debate among monetary policy committee members about whether rates should be cut. But deflation isn’t always a bad thing, some argue. Find out why here.
2. The tragic crash of a Germanwings flight between Barcelona and Duesseldorf, which caused the deaths of 150 people, sent airline shares down when it emerged co-pilot Andreas Lubitz had almost certainly done it deliberately. Although data showing air travel is getting safer probably doesn’t provide much comfort, some airlines have imposed new rules meaning two people must be in the cockpit at all times. Here’s which ones.
3. The movers arrived at Parliament as it held its final sessions in advance of the General Election. There were some last-minute surprises, as David Cameron ruled out a third term, while the first “debate” of election campaigning yielded surprising results. But if Labour wins and Ed Miliband is finally allowed to introduce his much-maligned mansion tax, guess who will be the only political leader to qualify? Spoiler: it’s not Nigel Farage
4. Speaking of parliament, an investigation by City A.M. has found dozens of MPs stand to make up to £9m from their second homes once they step down from parliament. Find out who - and how much they could capitalise - here. They could even live in the UK’s most desirable post codes, as revealed by the Royal Mail this week. The surprising thing is, not a single one is in the capital.
5. Finally: unhappy with your career? Understandable - after all, it turns out City workers are the UK’s least agreeable people. Perhaps it’s time to retrain: this week we discovered which once degree subject an overwhelming majority of billionaires studied. You won’t be surprised to learn it’s not media studies...

Leisurely reads

City A.M. launched its new Money Magazine this week. In it, pensions campaigner Ros Altmann describes how “new freedoms” are bringing about a sea-change in the industry.
And if you thought chancellor George Osborne had it hard, spare a thought for his Ukrainian counterpart, Natelia Jaresko, whose country currently has inflation of more than 20 per cent and a currency that’s depreciated by 70 per cent. Oh - and she’s fending off Vladimir Putin. But Jaresko tells us she has a plan to pull the country out of recession, without raising taxes. Find out what that is here.

Great reads from elsewhere

Teenagers disappearing to Syria to join Isis is becoming an increasingly potent problem for legislators on both sides of the pond. Rolling Stone has a fascinating insight into how the terrorist group entices the young and naive.
Propaganda has gone digital: the Russian government now employs people to comment on online posts, paid a “higher-than-average” wage for perpetuating a pro-Kremlin dialogue. Radio Free Europe interviewed former employees from Russia’s 24/7 “troll factory”.

The last word

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