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Tuesday Papers: WPP shares plunge on growing fears of break-up

And Vauxhall is set to 'terminate' entire dealership network as sales decline.

Tuesday Papers: WPP shares plunge on growing fears of break-up

Top stories

  • The Times: Shares of WPP plunged on Monday with the company losing almost £1 billion of market value amid fears that exit of Martin Sorrell could hasten a break-up of the group.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Vauxhall is battling with plunging sales and a changing market by terminating the contracts of all its 326 dealerships in Britain.
  • Financial Times: One of China’s largest telecoms equipment makers, ZTE Corp, has been barred from doing any business in the UK while the US cut it off from American suppliers.
  • The Times: Security officials in the US and the UK have warned about a global Russian hacking offensive targeting millions of computers to spy on governments and lay the foundation for an attack on infrastructure.
  • Financial Times: Deutsche Bank has been asked by the Eurozone’s banking regulator European Central Bank to estimate the costs of winding down trading assets on the €1.1 trillion balance sheet of its investment bank.
  • Financial Times: Lung cancer treatment made a breakthrough as Merck & Co's clinical trials showed that combination of the drugmaker’s novel medicine and chemotherapy boosted survival among vast number of patients.

Business and economics

  • The Guardian: Crypto-assets, tools built using the technology behind bitcoin, hold the potential to revolutionise the world of high finance by making it faster, cheaper and safer despite the prospect of “inevitable” accidents waiting to happen, the head of the International Monetary Fund has said.
  • The Times: Boosting the case of creating a post-Brexit services trade deal, exports of services from UK to European Union increased by 10.1% to £43.3 billion in the final three months of last year compared with the previous quarter.
  • The Times: Bank of America’s profit rose by nearly a third in the first quarter on the back of a strong American economy and President Trump’s overhaul of the tax code.
  • The Daily Telegraph: News of Netflix adding seven million subscribers in the first quarter of 2018 pushed the video streaming service's share up by more than 60%.
  • Daily Mail: Marks & Spencer is replacing own-brand baby food in its stores with smoothies, pasta pouches and snacks by organic food maker Ella’s Kitchen.
  • Financial Times: Moore Capital founder Louis Bacon is investing in his one-time protégé Greg Coffey's new hedge fund Kirkoswald Capital, which is due to launch later this year with more than $2 billion in money from investors.
  • The Guardian: Reforms made on whiplash payouts and review of compensation paid to victims of motor accidents have led to car insurance prices in UK record their first year-on-year fall since 2014.
  • Daily Mail: Evans Cycles has fired its chief executive Andy King after less than two years in the job for failing to meet business targets.
  • The Times: The FTSE 250 company Vedanta Resources has hired Srinivasan Venkatakrishnan, chief executive of a mining industry rival Anglo Gold Ashanti, as its new CEO.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Trade unions have urged government to revisit its policy towards diesel citing the recent job cuts at Jaguar Land Rover; the carmaker slashed 1,000 jobs and relocated 350 staff.
  • The Times: The chairman of Legal & General and former second permanent secretary at the Treasury, John Kingman, has been appointed chairman of a new “root and branch” review into the Financial Reporting Council.
  • The Guardian: BP’s new low-carbon strategy to reduce carbon footprint has been dismissed by environmentalists as “greenwash” and a lightweight response to climate change.
  • The Daily Telegraph: British technology start-ups received a record £1.1 billion investment from Silicon Valley last year.
  • Daily Mail: Jamie Oliver is planning to open hundreds of restaurants in staff canteens across the country through a ten-year deal with catering firm Aramark.
  • Daily Mail: Drinks multinational Diageo is making a £150 million investment to open a distillery visitor centre as more tourists flock to Scotland to sample its whisky.
  • The Times: The head of the World Trade Organisation has warned that the threat of a trade war between the US and China is unnerving business leaders and affecting the entire global economy.
  • Financial Times: Australian start-up Unlockd, which develops technology that enables mobile phone users to opt in to advertisements in exchange for rewards, has applied for a UK court injunction to prevent it being banned from Google’s app store and mobile advertising inventory.

Share tips, comment and bids

  • The Times (Tempus share tips): AVOID WPP; HOLD Quiz.
  • Daily Mail (Traders tips): BUY XP Power; SELL Hays.
  • Daily Mail: Recruiter Adecco has acquired US training firm General Assembly in a deal that values the American business at £289 million.
  • Daily Mail: Drug-maker Shire is offloading its cancer drugs business to French rival Servier for £1.6 billion as it prepares for a possible £32 billion bid battle with Japan’s Takeda.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Prenetics, a Hong Kong firm backed by Alibaba, has bought London-based DNAFit, which sells tests designed to determine a person’s suitability to different diets and exercise regimes, for $10 million (£7 million).
  • Financial Times: China National Chemical Corporation is raising its stake in commodity trader Mercuria; under the deal Mercuria will secure an interest in ChemChina’s refining assets.
  • Financial Times (Comment): Is trouble looming for US dividend aristocrats?
  • The Daily Telegraph (Comment): Sorrell can be replaced at WPP, but only by an outsider.
  • The Times (Comment): Data can be a big force for public good, but only if used properly.

3 comments so far. Why not have your say?

alan franklin

Apr 17, 2018 at 09:39

The Grauniad - the propaganda sheet you buy to get the wrong take on all issues - blathers about “greenwash."

That aptly describes this newspaper's pursuit of agendas rather than facts.

But the ridiculous nonsense of "Global Warming" - now renamed "Climate Change" which covers all bases - grows ever more menacing, especially to freedom as governments roll out ever more restrictive legislation. For greenism is the new religion, or part of it.

This year, parts of the USA faced temperatures that were the coldest recorded.

The Mail Online reported: "Frigid temperatures gripping parts of the northeastern United States continued to slide downward on Saturday as the region struggles to cope in the aftermath of this week's 'bomb cyclone.'

"Meteorologists studying weather patterns in the area say that wind chills in one part of New Hampshire were forecast to hit negative 100 degrees, in what the New York Times describes as an environment so unforgiving it 'steals your breath and freezes your eyelashes.' "

In a sane world, where facts were examined and verified, this sort of event and many others round the world would flatten "Global Warming" useful idiots like a snowball underfoot. But we live in the age of unreason.

A friend of mine summed it up well:

"Concerning the weather, there is no way to win with the Global Warming ideologues. If it is exceptionally cold, it is due to GW. If it is exceptionally warm, it is due to GW. If it is exceptionally dry, it is due to GW.

" If it is exceptionally wet, it is due to GW. If it is windy, it is due to GW. If it is calm, it is due to GW. It is ideological rather than scientific."

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Apr 17, 2018 at 15:52

@ alan franklin

What about the smog over parts of China? Did they always have that?

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Roger Savage

Apr 18, 2018 at 00:56

@ Nick

I think you're confusing Alan's point about climate change with the impact of visible, industrial pollution that in itself has nothing to do with CO2 (plant food).

"Smog generally occurs in the lower part of the atmosphere, less than 5 km above the ground. Smog is a combination of airborne particulate matter, like soot, and invisible toxic gases including ozone (O3), carbon monoxide (CO), sulfur dioxide (SO2), and carcinogens" (Source: Public Smog)

The mania about CO2 led to wide scale uptake of diesel vehicles over petrol, simply because diesel engines emitted less CO2 (but more of the nasty pollutants, such as particulates, that petrol engines produce in significantly lower quantities).

Environmentalists therefore encouraged and traded emissions of plant food for more harmful emissions in their dubious quest on climate change. A crushing irony then.

Still, many so-called environmentalists have nothing more than a hatred of motor vehicles and dress that hatred up under their own greenwash.

Curiously, the same groups say nothing about rampant house building in the UK - a major source of environmental degradation and pollution, along with overpopulation (more people = more pollution).

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