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'The only thing that keeps value is gold'

My favourite investment is... "well, I do have a bit of gold. I think it's a sensible thing to have.

"People were saying gold would continue to go down six or eight months. If you believe that the financial situation is going to be sorted out there is no reason to hold gold.

"But the only thing that has kept up its value is gold."

The poorest I've ever been was... "when I was a student. I had no spare pocket money. I maybe had a privileged early childhood, but I couldn't go to my mother looking for pocket money.

"I know what it is to say: 'I can't afford to buy a lunch' - and it's a salutatory lesson for anyone."

If I could give my younger self advice it would be... "at whatever age you are in life, follow your own beliefs. Make up your own mind, you might be mistaken but don't do things you don't really believe in."

The toughest time in my life was... "in 2005, when my wife Pamela died. She hadn't been ill; we had a great Christmas and she died on St Stephens' Day - very suddenly."

I get my suits in... "Brown Thomas."

Sunday Indo Business