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Saturday Papers: Worst start to market year in two decades

And China's largest bank buys huge 1,500-tonne gold vault in London.

Saturday Papers: Worst start to market year in two decades

Top stories

  • Financial Times: More than $2.3 trillion was wiped off global stocks this week as China’s slowing economy and currency depreciations spooked investors around the world, leading to the worst start to a year for markets in at least two decades.
  • The Daily Telegraph: ICBC Standard Bank, China's largest bank, is buying the lease on Deutsche Bank's huge London gold and silver vault, enlarging its footprint in the city's bullion market, according to reports.
  • The Guardian: Nearly half a billion pounds was wiped off the value of Sports Direct after the retailer shocked the stock market with a warning that annual profits would be £40 million lower than expected.
  • Financial Times: Volkswagen is failing to co-operate sufficiently with a US investigation into the emissions scandal, according to New York attorney-general Eric Schneiderman, who warned that the authorities’ patience was “wearing thin”.
  • Financial Times: Retailers must prepare for an era of lower profits as they adapt their business models to the rise of the internet, the outgoing boss of Waitrose has warned.
  • Financial Times: Kazakhstan’s $64.2 billion sovereign wealth fund has become the latest victim of the collapse in the price of oil and is predicted to be completely drained by 2026.

Business and economics

  • The Independent: The feted fund manager Neil Woodford yesterday stepped up his campaign to push for a break-up of UK-listed drugs giant GlaxoSmithKline.
  • The Independent: Motorola, the company that brought the flip phone to the world, is going to be killed off by its relatively new owner Lenovo, it has been announced.
  • The Guardian: Volkswagen has said its global sales fell 2% last year as it struggled with the diesel emissions scandal.
  • The Guardian: Standard Life is to vote against oil group Shell’s controversial plan to take over rival BG, branding the deal “value destructive” for shareholders at a time of plunging oil prices.
  • The Guardian: Johnston Press has announced a fresh set of job losses as the company looks to restructure its newsgathering operation across its 220-plus regional newspaper titles.
  • Daily Mail: Supermarket giant Sainsbury’s is launching a fresh assault on high street discounters Aldi and Lidl by doubling the size of its budget chain Netto.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Quindell has offloaded property and insulation businesses acquired under founder Rob Terry.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Discount outdoor clothing seller Mountain Warehouse bucked the gloomy trend in the wider retail market to report a 15% rise in sales over the Christmas period, as exports to Asia and a newly-launched yoga range took off.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Soft drinks maker Nichols, the company behind brands such as Vimto and Sunkist, said exports were hit by political tensions in the Middle East.
  • Financial Times: Britain’s biggest retailers have invested hundreds of millions of pounds and hired leading talent to fire up their digital businesses. But the past week has shown that stalwarts of the UK high street are still grappling with the rising power of online shopping.
  • Financial Times: Shares in Games Workshop, the high street store selling fantasy model games such as Lord of the Rings and Warhammer, fell 12% in early trading on Friday, after the company warned that full-year profits would drop after disappointing Christmas sales.
  • Financial Times: Samsung Electronics reported higher fourth-quarter earnings that fell well short of analysts’ forecasts, highlighting hiccups in last year’s components-driven recovery as growth slows in the global tech sector.

Share tips, comment and bids

  • Financial Times: BT will retain the EE name for its mainstream mobile brand following its £12.5 billion acquisition of the UK’s largest mobile operator.
  • Daily Mail: Liverpool's Royal Albert Dock has been sold by developers Arrowcroft for £43 million to investor Aberdeen Asset Management.
  • The Daily Telegraph (Comment): Finally! A banker who talks sense on Brexit. Kudos to Mark Astaire, a Barclays investment banker and one of London’s most senior financiers.
  • The Independent (Comment): How deep in a hole must the Saudis be to consider selling the state oil giant?
  • Financial Times (Lex): Saudi Aramco: what might the giant Middle East oil producer be worth?
  • Financial Times (Lex): Novo Banco: don’t be surprised when politics intervenes in bank resolutions.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Wall Street regulation: perhaps banks deserve more, but they have felt the heat since 2008.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Legendary: film groups team up to conquer China market.

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