This is how I got here, and the challenges I’d like to develop ahead.

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Photo by Adolfo Félix on Unsplash

It’s no big deal for many, but I wrote these hundred thousand words in the last nine months, and for me, this is quite an accomplishment. So let me be a bit proud of them, and make some reflections about the journey.

I always liked to learn and write, and I think this comes naturally to me. But I have to admit I wouldn’t probably be writing this if it were not for the pandemic and the lockdown.

I’m not a professional writer, so publishing my thoughts and analysis has never been a priority. It’s always been there as a side project, as a way to organize ideas and make sense of them, or also as an excuse to find a way to keep reading, feeding my curiosity. …


Short answer: we tried, but unfortunately not. However, he defeated even himself, having eight million more votes than in 2016.

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Photo by Tim Gouw on Unsplash

He got more votes (around 71 million) than any other candidate in history, except his rival Joe Biden (more than 75 million). That means two million more than Barack Obama in 2008 and five million more than when he was re-elected in 2012. Twenty-five million more votes than Ronald Reagan in 1980 or Bill Clinton in 1992. He even defeated himself, having the support of eight million more people than four years ago.

So Donald Trump is supported by millions, apparently a growing crowd. Why?
Maybe because he says things his voters think but don’t dare to say. …


BlackRock manages almost eight trillion dollars and is in most of the rooms where big decisions are made.

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Photo by Kristina Flour on Unsplash

Sometimes it is called the most influential company you have never heard of. At least, it is indeed the world’s largest asset manager. According to Investopedia, BlackRock Inc. was launched in 1988 as a division of the BlackRock Group. By January of 2020, assets under management past $7 trillion, and as of today, the amount can be around $7.8 trillion (according to Reuters). This makes BlackRock the world’s largest investment management firm. It runs more than 800 exchange-traded funds (ETFs).

Those almost 8 trillion could be more than Germany and UK’s GDP combined. And the numbers did nothing but grow during this pandemic year. As they published last October, just in the last quarter, they had “7% annualized organic asset growth, 18% increase in revenue year-over-year, and 17% increase in operating income year-over-year”, just to name a few of the very positive results. …


Technology is turning workers into one more product. Are we going towards an Auction Economy?

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Photo by Kai Pilger on Unsplash

I had this conversation with an Uber driver a few months ago. She was a smart, really nice middle-aged woman. We had an interesting conversation I enjoyed very much about many things (Trump among them…), on our way from San Francisco to Concord on a Friday evening. Would you want Uber to be forced by law to hire you as an employee, or you prefer to remain as an independent contractor? Look, she said, I prefer to work for Uber, for Lyft, and whoever else, and be on the street only when I want to be there. I want my time. I make good money on Fridays and Saturday evening, and that’s enough for me. …


The trend towards less tangible globalization was already present, but pandemic, as in many other aspects, is accelerating the transformation.

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Photo by Sushant Vohra on Unsplash

According to the latest events, “glocal” is a word that is catching up as one of the most appropriate to explain the world towards we are going. In a discussion, I heard someone was planning to move out of the city to a nice, large, quiet environment in the countryside and live out of “Amazon and Zoom.” As long as we’re engaging more and more in our closest community to try to help for a quick and healthy recovery, our life is moving at the same time to boundaries we didn’t think a year ago.

For the latest three or four decades, we have been surfing up the newest wave of “physical globalization,” and nothing seemed to put a stop to it. …


Economic, social, and political circumstances have led to a new normal, and consumers now demand companies to openly and clearly show their views.

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Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

It’s not supposed to be the companies’ job. As a business, their priority is doing business. P&L is my only God, and I don’t serve anything or anyone else. On the contrary, we know companies cannot be an island amidst all the context we’re living. They have workers who are sensitive to many of the hot topics they see around. And they also have customers who want to buy products with which they can feel comfortable, aligned, and represented. No one wants to be ashamed of the things they buy. …


We’re facing modern and dangerous versions of monopolies, not only in the tech industry but mostly across every economic sector.

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Photo by Kevin Bhagat on Unsplash

It is usually said that every economic crisis lays the seed of the next, and the 2008 Great Recession was not an exception. Banks have grown even bigger on the back of public money. Shadow banking has grown into a $160 trillion business, twice the global economy’s size and bonus pools for bankers are overflowing once again. On the back of trillions of publicly generated liquidity (“quantitative easing”), asset markets have rebounded, companies are merging on a mega scale.

One of the results of this situation is that, according to a Roosevelt Institute paper published in 2018, market concentration in the U.S. economy is high; the ongoing merger wave, and lax antitrust enforcement more generally, is indeed contributing to rising concentration, and in turn, concentration really portends a market power crisis in the economy. …


Melanie Perkins, the founder of Canva, shows the power of a cool entrepreneur who can be the third wealthiest woman in Australia while still having her feet on the ground.

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Photo by Halacious on Unsplash

The story could be one more of those of youngsters pursuing their dream. She remembers pitching more than a hundred people in less than two months in San Francisco, far away from her home city, Perth, in Australia. She dreamt big and started small, as many do. She wanted to entirely change the desktop publishing industry when she was 19.

You’ve probably heard from her. Her name is Melanie Perkins. She created one of the tools that maybe you’re already using to make your presentations look fantastic. …


Let’s hope there’s a way for the billionaires to use their fresh money to change (finally!) the world for good. “This COVID-19 crisis could be the real border between the old and the new economy”, says an Italian billionaire.

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Photo by engin akyurt on Unsplash

It is life-changing for most. Millions are deeply impacted. Many are suffering. Some are dying.

Meanwhile, billionaires are “Riding the storm” and doing it quite well, according to a UBS-PwC report:

Total billionaire wealth reached USD 10.2 trillion at the end of July 2020, touching a new high after the year’s V-shaped rebound in asset prices. This level surpasses the previous peak of USD 8.9 trillion, reached at the end of 2017. There are now 2,189 billionaires,1 up from 2,158 in 2017.

Fortunes are polarizing as business innovators and disruptors deploy technology to be among the leaders of today’s economic revolution. During 2018, 2019 and the first seven months of 2020, entrepreneurs in the tech, healthcare and industrials sectors pulled ahead.2 …


If you borrow money, invest it wisely. And in the case of governments, they should set up the right policies to keep the overall situation under control.

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Photo by Florian van Duyn on Unsplash

We’re going through a perfect time to borrow money, as we’re witnessing one of the strangest and most counterintuitive situations: the flirt with negative interest rates. We only saw this in very particular cases, like the stagnated Japan and its “lost decade,” and we felt it distant. But now, after two big shocks in ten years (the financial crisis and Great Recession after 2008, and now the coronavirus), interest rates are like to stay extremely low, even negative, at least for any foreseeable future.

Considering that inflation levels are also extremely low because of the successive crisis and a fearful consumer, real interest rates have gone next to zero. …

About

JM Piqué

Learner. Top writer in #Ideas, #Future, and #Government. I like living in the future. #Business is my main focus, but I can’t help to have many others.

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