Risk takers who go too far

NO ONE has, to Slugcatcher's knowledge, written a management self-help book called In praise of prudent managers, but if they did the ideal place to start for a view of excessive risk taking would be an analysis of the oil and gas industry which desperately needs older and more level-headed managers.

The reason for suggesting something as provocative as that is a combination of two events, a fresh write down by BHP Billiton of its US shale interests, and the apparent futility of Woodside Petroleum