Ethics of Universal Basic Income

October 18th, 2016 by Kara in Case Studies

  By: Victoria Tse Part 1 of SPI’s Universal Basic Income Series What is a Universal Basic Income (UBI)? A basic income is a universal income grant available to every citizen without means test or work requirement. How much money governments should issue to their people is still a topic of discussion within countries looking to launch UBI experiments. Switzerland was the first to hold a public referendum introducing the UBI with the Federal Council approving a ballot issuing adults $2,500 and children $625 a month. The referendum failed – this time. Proponents of ...

Review: The Big Short

August 9th, 2016 by Kara in Case Studies

By Kolbe Murray The Big Short (2015) is an ambitious attempt to capture the story of key players in the 2008 Great Financial Crisis (GFC). Unethical behavior exacerbated the problems and compounded the disastrous consequences. An analysis of two acts spotlighted in The Big Short indicates one (shorting) is not wrong per se and another (ratings by S&P) as unethical. The Ethics of Short Selling Historically, short selling or shorting is viewed negatively and some call it as “betting against the home team.” In The Big Short Ben Rickett (Brad Pitt) reprimands his two business ...

Financing America’s Public Schools Ethically

May 27th, 2016 by Kara in Case Studies

By: Mark Anderson   America has fallen in rankings in several metrics.  The US healthcare system is the least accessible and efficient, and US citizens the least healthy of any developed nation in the world. We rank 6th in median household income and 10th in per-capita GDP. In this article I look into one of America’s worst failing institutions: its public education system. American students rank 24th in terms of achievement, even though we have the 5th highest rate of per-pupil education spending of any nation in the world . Our society knows ...

Has bank culture changed to ensure ethical behavior?

April 20th, 2016 by Kara in Case Studies

By: David Trang Bank Culture Since 2008 Since the Global Financial Crisis (GFC), the banking industry has been fined over $100 billion dollars for unethical and fraudulent practices (Childress 2014). Academics note this is not purely attributed to ethical lapses by a few individuals but also to how banks are operated, supervised and regulated (Wehinger 2013). In response, many banks worldwide have attempted to reshape their culture by revisiting their code of ethics, educating their employees on the importance of ethical behavior and forming committees to oversee the implementation of ethical programs. Even ...

International Investment Management

April 5th, 2016 by Kara in Events, News

  Seven Pillars Institute is pleased to announce the publication of International Investment Management: Theory, Ethics and Practice, the newly released book from Routledge authored by Dr. Kara Tan Bhala (President of Seven Pillars Institute), Warren Yeh and Raj Bhala.  A quick take on the book: International Investment Management synthesizes investment principles, Asian financial practice, and ethics reflecting the realities of modern international finance. These topics are studied within the Asian context, first through the medium of case studies and then via the particular conditions common in those markets including issues of religion and philosophy. A longer description of the ...

More on the Ethics of Bitcoin

March 28th, 2016 by Kara in Case Studies

    By: Seamus Vaughan Lucey Bitcoin is a digital currency that uses encryption techniques to verify the transfer of funds. Bitcoin transactions take place on a peer-to-peer basis and consequently the currency operates independently of third party payment providers as well as government and banking regulation. Transactions using bitcoin are confirmed by a transaction ledger called the blockchain, which makes all transactions using the currency public to those within the bitcoin network. Bitcoins are created via the process of mining, which involves solving complex mathematically equations using powerful computers, the limit of ...

Ferguson: A Financial Ethics Explanation

February 25th, 2016 by Kara in Case Studies, Essays

  By: Sarah Myers Macks Creek Law and its Exploitative Effects in Revenue Generation by Police and Courts Ferguson is a city in St. Louis County, Missouri, USA. The city is now infamous as the place where racial unrest and protests began and then spread around the country after Michael Brown, an 18 year old African American, was fatally shot by Darren Wilson, a Caucasian policeman. This story investigates how Macks Creek Law contributed to events in Ferguson. Missouri created Macks Creek Law to limit the amount of revenue municipalities can collect from traffic ...

Tax Systems: A Brief Ethical Discourse

February 11th, 2016 by Kara in Case Studies, Economics

By Nathaniel Crosser While complaining about income tax is universal, there seems little doubt or disagreement about the importance of taxation for the functioning of a civil society. We are surely better off with the social contract that requires some form of taxation. The uber-wealthy and underprivileged alike benefit from public goods and services, such as roads, policing, firefighting, and the regulation of monopolies. Why then this distaste of income taxes? Americans primarily (and historically) find issue not with the existence of taxation, but with the ways in which the government collects its money. ...

The Case of Goldman Sachs and 1MDB

January 28th, 2016 by Kara in Case Studies

By: Audrey Zhang In August 2005, anti-corruption officials began investigating 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) for alleged graft, triggered by reports that almost US$700 million from the lucrative deals issued for 1MDB by Goldman Sachs ended up in the pockets of Malaysia’s Prime Minister, Najib Razak. SPI investigates the alleged corruption claims and the ethical implications of Goldman’s involvement. Goldman Sachs and 1MDB: The Players Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. – A leading global investment banking, securities, and investment management firm, founded in 1869. The firm maintains offices in all major financial centers around the globe, ...

The Ethics of Bitcoin

January 14th, 2016 by Kara in Case Studies, Videos

By Haoqian Chen Bitcoin is quite a phenomenon. This power point video gives a short history of the virtual currency. Some argue Bitcoin is evil. Is it? The video analyzes the ethics of the product and its uses.     As of today, according to Realtime, there are currently 15 million Bitcoins in circulation. At an exchange rate of US$431 to one virtual coin the amount in circulation is worth about US$6.5 trillion. Bitcoin took off in late 2013 and hit a high of roughly US$1100 but the price has trended down although there seems to ...