Author Archives: Leon Bremer

Leon Bremer

Leon Bremer is a MSc Economics student, specializing in Sustainability & Growth. His main interests are in social and environmental issues like pollution, inequality, financial crises, and sustainable growth.


When electricity prices disappoint

Lately prices for electricity have fallen. Although the decreases have not been outrageous, it causes for trouble especially for the “green” investors. Energy companies that invested in e.g. windmills and solar panels might find their investments to yield insufficient returns. What does this mean for Europe’s renewable energy aspirations?


Restarting or rethinking our old economy?

The ECB has again lowered its interest rate and expanded its Quantitative Easing (QE) program to monthly purchases of €80 billion. This all serves to boost economic activity in the Eurozone and to get the (real) economy going again. In theory, lower interest rates would increase consumption and investment, driving up economic activity. But will this really be the case? Or are there more fundamental problems at play in Europe?


Did Nokia bring down Finland’s prosperity?

Nokia was widely known for making decent unbreakable phones, but they seem to have lost the battle on the mobile phone market when smartphones were introduced. The downturn of Nokia was not something new to me, but honestly I did not know that Finland’s economy was in a bad shape as well. After I read an article about the absence of a recovery of the Finnish economy in The Economist, I decided to look for the connection between Nokia’s and Finland’s crises.


Income inequality on the rise?

Last Monday Oxfam Novib published a report on the growing income inequality. Their observation is stunning. They claim that the richest 62 people on earth earn equally much as the poorest half. Additionally, the top 1% earns as much as the other 99%. What are the driving forces behind this growing inequality?


Why not introduce a Carbon Tax?

Climate change is one of the hot topics lately. With ideas on recycling, the circular economy, renewable energy sources, electric cars, solar panels, and many others, the discussion on how to attack this problem has really taken off. It did not only raise the interest of consumers and producers, but with the start of the 21st Conference Of the Parties (COP21) in Paris last week, the discussion also got the attention of political leaders of 195 countries. To add to the discussion we will introduce you to the carbon tax. We asked Professor Daan van Soest, environmental economist at Tilburg University, to explain us a thing or two about this Carbon Tax.


ABN AMRO Bank is back

On Friday November the 20th ABN AMRO Bank made a return on Amsterdam’s stock exchange AEX. After being rescued by the Dutch government seven years ago, the bank is now getting back on its own feet again. Apparently investors were eager to buy a piece of the Dutch bank, because the shares closed at a value of 3.5% above the IPO price. The government and ABN’s CEO responded optimistic to this news. But what is the story behind the largest Dutch bailout during the crisis?

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A talk with Ronald van Hees – Finance Director at CZ

During the Inside the Business Day almost three weeks ago, Off the Charts obviously did not only participate in the cases. We were curious about the participating companies and their employees. Therefore we took our chances during this day to get some interesting inside information about the cases, the employees and the job opportunities. This article will cover the conversation with Ronald van Hees, Finance director at CZ. CZ is one of the four biggest Dutch health insurers and has a large office in Tilburg.