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Saturday Papers: Nationwide faces £2bn shortfall after ‘crude’ test

And Russia’s President Vladmir Putin has signed one of the biggest oil deals ever with China.

Saturday Papers: Nationwide faces £2bn shortfall after ‘crude’ test

Top stories

  • Financial Times: The chief executive of Nationwide, the UK’s biggest building society, has hit out at the “crude” measure used by regulators to assess the sector’s financial strength as it emerged that the mutual is facing a £2 billion capital hole.
  • The Independent: Russia’s President Vladmir Putin yesterday signed one of the biggest oil deals ever with China in a move seen as signalling a massive shift from west to east in the tectonic plates of the global oil industry.
  • The Daily Telegraph: BP has called for a "comprehensive and independent investigation" into allegations of misconduct by lawyer over Gulf compensation claims.
  • Financial Times: Half of Tim Cook’s compensation over the next eight years will depend on Apple’s performance relative to other US companies, as part of wider changes to executive remuneration announced by the iPhone maker on Friday.
  • Daily Express: Some of the UK’s major lenders have been told by the Bank of England’s new banking regulator they need to raise billions of pounds more to plug a £27.1 billion black hole in their balance sheets.
  • Daily Mail: George Osborne will outline plans for an extra £15 billion of infrastructure spending next week as he battles to boost economic growth and get the nation’s finances under control.

Business and economics

  • Daily Express: European regulators have ordered Britain and France to slash fees charged to passenger operator Eurostar and freight hauliers to use the Channel Tunnel sparking a row with its operator.
  • The Independent: Bumi, the Indonesian coal group co-founded by the banking scion Nat Rothschild and under scrutiny by the Serious Fraud Office, will not meet a self-imposed deadline of next week to resume trading in its shares.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Property entrepreneur Vincent Tchenguiz is trying to block a move by Lloyds to put part of his empire into administration by claiming the bank could have been involved in Libor-rigging.
  • The Daily Telegraph: More than a dozen payday lenders face being driven out of business as watchdogs prepare to call for a full-blown Competition Commission investigation of the market.
  • Daily Express: Paul Walsh, outgoing boss of Guinness brewer Diageo, took a new direction yesterday after being appointed chairman of caterer Compass.
  • Daily Mail: Flybe slumped further into the red as cost-cutting accelerated to help stabilise the business; the underlying pre-tax losses in the 12 months to 31 March widened to £23.2 million from £7.1 million a year earlier.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Japan's biggest bank Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi faces a £162 million fine for laundering billions of dollars in violation of economic sanctions against countries including Iran, Burma and Sudan.
  • Daily Mail: Steve Mogford, chief executive of United Utilities, received a 9% rise in the value of his pay package last year; his pay and perks package rose to £1.5 million.
  • The Independent: Apple has won its latest court battle with Samsung after a Japanese court ruled that the South Korean firm had infringed on its US rival’s patent for a “bounce-back” feature used on tablet and smartphone models.
  • Daily Mail: Tourism body Visit Britain is facing a 12% budget cut, prompting a furious backlash from tour operators.
  • Daily Mail: The value of the taxpayer’s stake in Royal Bank of Scotland has fallen by £4.5 billion since boss Stephen Hester was ousted, amid mounting anxiety that the lender will be broken up.
  • Daily Mail: Copper miner ENRC is considering legal action against former directors over alleged ‘malicious’ leaks of information about a corruption probe.
  • The Independent: Jeffrey Skilling, the ex-Enron chief executive who was sent to prison in 2006 after being convicted for his role in the energy giant’s collapse, could be freed by the end of the decade after a US judge cut his sentence from 24 to 14 years.
  • Financial Times: Monsanto has said that rigorous testing of US wheat supplies reinforces its belief that the appearance of unauthorised genetically modified wheat on an Oregon farm last month was the result of sabotage.
  • Financial Times: News Corp has further shaken up its top ranks a week before it formally splits in two, moving the editor of The Sun to explore “strategic opportunities” across Europe for its publishing company.
  • Financial Times: Gold posted its largest weekly fall in almost two years after a heavy sell-off in precious metals following US Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke’s comments on the tapering of quantitative easing.

Share tips, comment and bids

  • Daily Express: Ryanair made an order worth up to £10 billion for 175 Boeing aircraft yesterday and said it might buy 200 more.
  • Financial Times: Apax has raised €5.8 billion for a buyout fund, less than two-thirds of what the London-based private equity group collected before the financial crisis.
  • Financial Times: Playtech, the gaming software provider, has sold its 10% stake in Sportech, the pools and gaming operator, but dismissed speculation it was seeking to avoid US regulation.
  • Financial Times: Royal Dutch Shell is considering selling more of its Nigerian onshore production assets while investing more in sabotage-hit pipeline projects in the country’s eastern Niger Delta.
  • The Independent: Cupid, the online dating site, has received “a number of recent approaches” for its casual dating sites such as and, and added that it was “exploring the proposed opportunities”.
  • Financial Times: Bridgepoint, the private equity owner of Pret A Manger, will receive £150 million from the UK sandwich chain after increasing the company’s debt in a mechanism known as dividend recapitalisation.
  • The Independent: The private equity owner of Pret A Manger is eyeing a major investment in upmarket chocolate retailer Hotel Chocolat, which is valued at more than £100 million.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Vodafone faces an increasingly serious challenge to its €7.5bn (£4.4bn) attempt to buy Kabel Deutschland after it emerged that rival bidder Liberty Global will keep the German company public.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Edward Bramson is now 3i's second-biggest shareholder.
  • Financial Times: Canada’s Sun Life Financial cautioned on Friday that an investigation by US regulators into private equity groups’ acquisitions of life insurance companies was likely to postpone the agreed sale of its US annuities business for $1.35 billion in cash to the backers of Guggenheim Partners.
  • Daily Mail (Comment): George Osborne and his advisors at the Treasury have succeeded in making matters far worse at Royal Bank of Scotland.
  • The Independent (Comment): It’s time that Barack Obama named the new woman to run the Federal Reserve.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Fund flows: retail and institutional investors have already headed for the exits but bond and emerging-market selling remains small relative to recent inflows.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Overheard: Google’s Sergey Brin and Larry Page on zero vote shares, or, why internet guys are so much smarter than everyone else.

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