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Tuesday Papers: US sues VW over defeat devices

And FTSE suffers worst stock market start in 16 years as China-led malaise wipes £38 billion off the index.

Tuesday Papers: US sues VW over defeat devices

Top stories

  • Financial Times: The US government has filed a lawsuit against Volkswagen over the emissions test-rigging scandal that threatens to cost the embattled carmaker tens of billions of dollars.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Britain’s benchmark index FTSE suffered its worst new year start in 16 years as weak economic data from China and heightened tension in the Middle East wreaked havoc on financial markets worldwide.
  • Financial Times: The US called on Saudi Arabia and Iran to show restraint amid fears on Monday that the sharp escalation in tensions between the two countries could deepen proxy wars in Syria and Yemen and scupper already fragile efforts to forge international solutions to the conflicts.
  • Financial Times: Santander UK is returning to the investment advice market in the latest sign of a more assertive mood in the City just three years after high street banks abandoned the sector under pressure from fines for misselling.
  • Financial Times: Toyota has chosen to use a technology originally developed by rival Ford to connect smartphone apps to its cars’ dashboards, snubbing Apple’s CarPlay and Google’s Android Auto.
  • Financial Times: Sports Direct has disclosed that the boyfriend of founder Mike Ashley’s daughter could receive millions of pounds for his role as a consultant to the company.
  • The Guardian: HSBC will not face formal action from the City regulator following revelations that the Swiss arm of Britain’s biggest bank helped clients to evade tax.

Business and economics

  • Financial Times: MPs are planning to push for an inquiry into the UK financial watchdog’s decision to drop a review of banking culture only months after its launch.
  • Financial Times: Brazil has reported its largest December trade surplus on record as economic turmoil curbs demand for imports.
  • Financial Times: Sweden’s central bank has handed its governor and a deputy the power to intervene in foreign exchange markets at any time, the Riksbank’s latest ploy in a determined campaign to boost inflation.
  • Financial Times: JKX, the London-listed oil and gas producer, has attacked its second-largest shareholder Proxima Capital Group, accusing it of trying to take over the company by the back door.
  • Financial Times: Shares in UK-focused insurance companies fell sharply on Monday as investors digested the impact of flooding over the Christmas period; Direct Line, RSA and Aviva, which have strong positions in the UK general insurance market, all fell by almost 4%.
  • Financial Times: Shan Weijian, the former TPG executive who now leads private equity firm PAG, has raised $3.6 billion for his second Asian buyout fund, joining the fundraising rush in the region.
  • Financial Times: EE has announced that Olaf Swantee will stand down as chief executive following the £12.5 billion takeover by BT.
  • Financial Times: Grainger, Britain’s largest listed residential landlord, has unveiled a £325 million deal to sell its equity release division to private equity groups, the first step in a streamlining drive by new chief executive Helen Gordon.
  • Financial Times: Hyundai Motor and affiliate Kia Motors have forecast another tough year in 2016 after missing sales targets last year for the first time since the global financial crisis.
  • The Independent: Ferrari stalled on the starting grid on its first day trading on Milan’s stock exchange, with its shares being briefly suspended as they dropped on their Italian debut.
  • The Guardian: General Motors and ride-hailing company Lyft are forming an unprecedented partnership that could help them beat their rivals to the self-driving future as GM invested $500 million in the company as part of a $1 billion round of fund-raising.
  • The Guardian: Australian shares have dipped almost 1% as uncertainty about the direction of the Chinese economy and markets saw volatile trading across Asia Pacific.
  • The Guardian: Troubled electronics retailer Dick Smith has been placed in voluntary administration after failing to secure a funds injection from its banks.
  • The Guardian: Star Wars: The Force Awakens has overtaken James Bond movie Spectre to become the biggest film of 2015 at the UK box office as JJ Abrams’ space opera sequel has taken £97.6 million in Britain and Ireland, moving it ahead of Spectre’s £93.5 million as of last weekend.
  • Daily Mail: The finance boss of Shell has warned the price of oil could fall to $20 a barrel within weeks but has defended its £36 billion takeover of BG Group as a long-term deal.
  • Daily Mail: Two more top banks are getting away with paying no corporation tax in the UK as Credit Suisse and Citigroup are latest to admit using previous losses to slash their bills.
  • The Daily Telegraph: North Sea oil and gas production to reverse 15 years of decline as output from UK Continental Shelf rose in 2015 despite oil prices crashing to more than 10-year low.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Dutch billionaire John Fentener van Vlissingen who has signalled he would oppose any attempts to take over InterContinental Hotels Group has boosted his stake in the Holiday Inn-owner to become its second-biggest shareholder.

Share tips, comment and bids

  • Financial Times: Baxalta, the US biotech company facing renewed takeover interest from Shire, has agreed a deal worth up to $1.6 billion to develop cancer drugs with a Danish company called Symphogen.
  • Financial Times: Nokia said on Monday it had gained control of Alcatel-Lucent, following its €15.6 billion all-share offer for the French telecoms equipment maker but still faces opposition from some shareholders.
  • Financial Times: Vonovia, Germany’s largest listed landlord, has until 26 January to convince shareholders of its nearest rival, Deutsche Wohnen, to back its hostile €14 billion bid for the smaller group.
  • Financial Times: Priory Group, the British healthcare specialist famous for treating celebrities, has been sold to an American owner Acadia Healthcare Company.
  • Financial Times: The Dublin-based Smurfit Kappa Group said it would pay €186 million for two privately owned integrated paper-based packaging companies - Industria de Embalagens Santana and Paema Embalagens, as it looks to expand its presence in Latin America, where it claims to be the biggest regional supplier of corrugated packaging.
  • Financial Times (Lex): General Motors/Lyft: the carmaker’s cleaned-up balance sheet has allowed it to punt on pink.
  • Financial Times (Lex): UK consumer borrowing: borrowing tends to reflect confidence more than servicing costs.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Cairn Energy: the UK oil explorer has decided that less is more. Investors like the new focus.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Smurfit Kappa: leverage has both helped and hindered the Irish packaging company.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Japan Inc: Takata share surge illustrates that ailing companies die hard.

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