Fortune really does favour the brave prediction An e-mail from JP Morgan's Investment Bank Media Relations tells us that Jing Ulrich, managing director and chairman of Global Markets China, for the second year running has been named in the list of the 25 most influential businesswomen in China by Fortune China magazine. JP Morgan's media people reported the magazine said: 'Jing Ulrich serves as a bridge connecting China with the global investment community, and has been dubbed 'the unofficial voice of China.'' The statement went on to say: 'Speaking at the Fortune China CEO Summit this year, Ms Ulrich said Chinese enterprises should accelerate the pace of overseas investments, especially in the natural resource sector, including energy, minerals and agriculture ...' Last year she told Fortune's Most Powerful Women Summit that she didn't think China had a housing bubble and that generally prices were not inflated. Hmmm. Side order of seven-seaters We have been receiving a steady number of complaints about seven-seater vehicles - the type favoured by tycoons - illegally parked outside outlets frequented by the rich, often with a dozing driver and idling engine. One reader reports of the chaos in Lan Fong Road, behind the Lee Gardens Shopping Arcade. One side is a designated public light bus stop while the other is taken up with waiting cars and their chauffeurs, despite a sign that says 'vehicles parking or waiting here will be prosecuted immediately'. He says the police response is that they will come and warn the drivers, but won't give them a ticket. Another writes to make the point that if all the drivers who have illegally parked in Central were forced to move and use a car park, then Li Ka-shing's car park in the Cheung Kong Center would be full and he wouldn't convert it into a supermarket. He's applied, unsuccessfully, to convert nearly 80 spaces in the building's car park into a supermarket as he says it is underused. When the Murray Road car park is sold soon for redevelopment, there is going to be an even bigger shortage of car spaces. We're told there was a police car parked outside the Fook Lam Moon restaurant - the tycoons' canteen - in Wan Chai last Saturday. The street was surprisingly clear of waiting chauffeured seven-seaters. Amazing. Macau can't spend fast enough While governments in Europe and the US are struggling to slash public spending in order to reduce deficits, Macau has a different kind of problem. It is struggling to spend all of the funds it has budgeted for the year. In the first 10 months of this year, the Macau government's total public expenditure was 31.3 billion patacas, 60 per cent below the amount budgeted for the year, Macau Business reports. Even so, public spending is still up 14.7 per cent year on year. The city also saw a whopping increase in its fiscal surplus of 68.3 per cent to 59.5 billion patacas on account of the tax on gaming. Government revenue has surged 45 per cent to 90.8 billion patacas, almost 30 per cent more than anticipated. Maybe the Europeans should be speaking to the Macau government about bailing them out. BRICS building momentum Jim O'Neill, the Goldman Sachs economist who coined the 'BRIC' acronym in 2001, has revisited the subject in a new book and says he has one regret about that call - that he wasn't bolder. He says BRIC economic growth has been sharper than he expected even in the most optimistic of scenarios, with the per capita income of the group effectively trebling. He also says Brazil has become the world's 7th largest economy, overtaking Italy, and that the Chinese consumer market grew by US$1.5 trillion since 2001, creating a whole new UK. At the same time, intra-BRIC trade has grown much faster than he expected and BRIC leaders are talking openly about doing more business not involving the dollar. 'Topple the technocrats' Economist Paul Krugman has harsh words for the technocrats that are being seen as the potential saviours of Europe. In his column in The New York Times he calls them 'deeply impractical romantics' and says they need to be toppled if Europe is to be saved. Why, he asks, did the technocrats favour the creation of the euro? 'Partly it was the dream of European unification, which the continent's elite found so alluring that its members waved away practical objections. And partly it was a leap of economic faith, the hope - driven by the will to believe, despite vast evidence to the contrary - that everything would work out as long as nations practised the Victorian virtues of price stability and fiscal prudence.'