Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times no. 13,757 by NEO

Posted by Ringo on July 28th, 2011


A Financial Times crossword for Financial Times readers, today… which rather left me up a certain creek without a certain implement. An ingenious finance theme throughout, coupled with what I felt was some pretty obscure clueing, made this a tough solve for me today. The hangover didn’t help.


1. BANKER  Anagram of Ken in bar [pub] to give a colloquial term for a sure-fire certainty

4. HERCULES  L [fifty] in her cues [womanly signs] to give the famed strongman of classical myth

10. LEGISLATE  Leg [member] + is late [has missed appointment]

11. PONZI  P [money, pence] + on [staked, as in ‘there’s a lot of money on this race’] + zi(p) [almost nothing] to give the notorious scheming swindler (I’m not sure about my parsing of this one: corrections and clarifications welcome, as ever!)

12. RUIN  I [1, one] in run [as in a run on the bank] to give something many economies are currently facing

13. BOB DIAMOND  Bob [a shilling coin] + did incorporating a + mon(ey) to give the first of the big-time bankers [see 1ac.] included in this puzzle

15, 24. DOUGLAS FLINT  Douglas [capital of (the Isle of) Man] + FT [us] incorporating L [pound] + in to give the HSBC head honcho

16. DROOPY  Hidden in reverse in verY POOR Drawing – but this is surely a glaring error, as the magnificent Droopy was surely a basset-hound or a beagle, and in any case certainly not a poodle (I might not know much about high finance, but I know my cartoons…)

19, 26. MERVYN KING  Anagram of Mr Envy + king [top man] to give the Bank of England boss

21. See 25ac.

23. IN-FIGHTING  I(nternational) + night [darkness] incorporating f(emale) + G(ulf) to give a description of an internal conflict such as banker vs. banker

25, 21. FRED GOODWIN  F(ellow) + red [-faced with embarrassment] + good win [right result]  to give the infamous Fred the Shred

27. PRICE  P(otato) + rice [starchy food] to give the glamour model and ‘author’ Katie Price (a.k.a. Jordan) – and a nice tie-in with the financial theme

28. ASSAILANT  Anagram of alsatians

29. EXTENDED  Ex [old love] + tended [had disposition to] to give a synonym for ‘out’

30. AGREED  A [film all may see? Could be a reference to the old ‘A’ film classification, which preceded ‘Parental Guidance’] + greed [mortal sin]


1. BELGRADE  Anagram of GB dealer to give the Serbian capital

2. NEGRITUDE  Anagram of Tiger within nude [unclothed] to give a term for collective black culture – but the definition is odd: something forsaken? Perhaps an obscure reference to Tiger Woods, who refers to himself as ‘Cablinasian’ with reference to his Caucasian, Black, American Indian and Asian heritage?

3. EAST  (B)east [brutal person] to give a compass point

5. EMENDED  E(arth) + men [people, with apologies to half the world’s population] + de(e)d [action]

6. CEPHALOPOD  Anagram of poodle chap to give a kind of tentacled mollusc

7. LINGO  Ling [fish] + o [0, zero, a ‘duck’ in cricket]

8. SHINDY  Sandy minus and [also], incorporating hind [back], to give a dialect word meaning (among other things) a row or fight

9. FAMOUS  Fa(t) + anagram of sumo

14. OLIVE GREEN  Anagram of legion ever to give a colour or shade

17. POWER BASE  Pose [sit, as for a portrait] surrounding we + anagram of bar – took me a while, this one

18. UNEDITED  Une [‘one’ in French (i.e. from Paris)] + died [came to grief] incorporating T(roy) 

20. NUT CASE  Anagram of can’t use

21. GANESH  Gash [cut] incorporating (k)ne(e) to give the elephant-headed Hindu God

22. PIMPLE  MP [Member of Parliament] within pile [massive building, as in an aristocrat’s ‘country pile’]

24. See 15ac.

26. See 19ac.

7 Responses to “Financial Times no. 13,757 by NEO”

  1. Conrad Cork says:

    It’s OK Ringo, the hangover doesn’t show.

    He’s a cunning chap Neo, isn’t he? Only a day or so from his themed one in Another Place on ‘barker’, we now get him on ‘banker’. I look forward to basker and basket.

    And they are real bankers, not rivers, so respect is due.

  2. Anon says:

    At 16a, might Neo have misread (or used for “comic” effect) Wikipedia?

    “In the episode Northwest Hounded Police Droopy’s last name was given as McPoodle. In The Chump Champ it was given as Poodle. Nevertheless, Droopy is generally understood to be a basset hound.”

  3. Richard C says:

    Well done, Ringo!

    I started this at 18.30 and having seen your blog, I’m glad I didn’t persevere with it. A bizarre mixture of the very easy and as you say ‘pretty obscure’.

  4. mark says:

    re 30, aren’t U films (Universal) those suitable for all viewers? In my childhood there were three categories; U, A (Adult) and X (Horror etc.)

    I thought 2 the cleverest clue, referring I’m sure to Tiger Woods. Whether he would agree that he’s forsaken his black identity I don’t know, but I also took “frolicking in an unclothed situation” as a jokey allusion to his recent troubles, but perhaps that’s just my mind…

    Shindy floored me – a word I’ve never heard and didn’t figure out.

  5. Neo says:

    Well, how would you know if you ‘didn’t persevere’ with the puzzle, Richard C? I don’t mind negative feedback – it’s just as necessary as the good stuff – but for comments to carry any weight (with me, at least), their authors really do need to roll up their sleeves and get stuck in.

    Re the constructive remarks, A = ‘a film certified for viewing by anyone’ according to Collins, so I’ll go with that. Re Droopy, his name is either ‘Poodle’ or ‘McPoodle’ in any case, which allows for the definition I used, and in the Wiki entry I read (which has changed: at the time I remember being amazed myself to find that Droopy is NOT a Basset Hound) he was said to be a poodle. And finally, yes, the Tiger Woods ref is meant to allude to the possibility that he MIGHT have strayed from the true course of negritude, hence the QM, and who am I to question, etc.

    Thanks to almost all who replied to the blog, and many thanks indeed to Ringo, who correctly identified the puzzle as one written for the audience principally associated with the host publication, rather than, say, the denizens of (nonetheless esteemed) 15/2.


  6. Sil van den Hoek says:

    Well, Neo, 15/2 = 7.5 and not 225 … :).

    We (yes, I ‘forced’ my PinC to solve your puzzle after we’d finished the Pasquale all too quickly – in a nice way (the forcing, I mean)) enjoyed your brainchild. But I am not sure she fully liked it as much as I did.
    On the other hand she knew all these barkers … :)

    We failed on Mr PONZI.
    ZI[p] could easily have been NI[l], leading to another mafioso.

    Thanks Neo, and can we please have a puzzle on different kind of baskets [courtesy of Conrad Cork, @1]?

  7. Neo says:

    With Hugo Weaving maybe?

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