The world’s largest container shipping company, AP Møller-Maersk, warned investors this week that it was seeing significantly tougher business conditions than it had during the 2008 financial crisis, marking the latest gloomy announcement in recent weeks about the weak state of global trade. The FT’s Sujeet Indap asks industry correspondent Robert Wright about what to watch in the shipping industry for signs of a global slowdown.

 

More than 30 years after China instituted the one-child policy to temper population growth, the country’s demographics have greatly transformed. Author Mei Fong joins hosts Shannon Bond and Cardiff Garcia to talk about the societal and economic implications of the policy, the subject of her book “One Child”. Later, the blood testing device developed by Theranos was expected to disrupt the healthcare sector, but that seems less likely now that it has run into regulatory trouble. FT journalists David Crow and Sujeet Indap discuss. Go to FT.com/alphachat for show notes and links.

 

Simon Kuper is joined by author-journalists Amy Raphael, Jimmy Burns and David Winner for a behind the scenes look at how the interplay between soccer and culture will play out at Euro 2016

 

The dash towards negative interest rates does not seem to be working, leaving markets in a state of flux. Paul Lambert from Insight Investment tells Katie Martin why we need to have a more innovative policy plan, including debt write-offs, and warns it could all get worse before it gets better.

 

UK newspaper groups are re-evaluating their business model as they seek online revenues to replace lost print sales and new digital ways to promote content – such as Google, Facebook and Apple, says Henry Mance

 

In what could prove a decisive moment in Syria’s civil war, the northern rebel stronghold of Aleppo is on the brink of falling to government forces backed by Russian air power. Ben Hall discusses what options remain for the US-backed rebels with Erika Solomon, FT Middle East correspondent, and Geoff Dyer, US diplomatic correspondent.

 

Syrian government forces backed by Russian air power are on the brink of encircling the northern city of Aleppo, a stronghold of the moderate rebels in what could prove to be a decisive moment in Syria’s murderous civil war. Ben Hall discusses the implications with Erika Solomon, FT Middle East correspondent, and Geoff Dyer, FT US diplomatic correspondent.

 

The latest report on the benefits of female corporate leaders shows that the presence of female executives appears to boost company profits. Carola Hoyos discusses the findings with Kate Burgiss, FT corporate correspondent.

 

Millennial money: how 20-somethings think about finance.
The ease of sinking into unmanageable credit card debt.
Divorce for £59 online? This could be a costly DIY mistake.

 

In May last year Hanergy, a little known Chinese solar energy company, was worth almost $40bn, at least on paper. But in one brutal half hour of trading in Hong Kong, its shares came crashing down. FT reporters Miles Johnson, Lucy Hornby and Cynthia O’Murchu investigate the trail of debt that led to its spectacular decline.

Music by David Sappa