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Wednesday Papers: UK looks to join Pacific trade group after Brexit

And Mifid II comes into force, with the City facing one of the biggest shake-ups since the Big Bang reforms of the 1980s.

Wednesday Papers: UK looks to join Pacific trade group after Brexit

Top stories

  • Financial Times: Britain has held informal talks about joining a flagship Pacific trade group, in an audacious bid to kick-start exports after Brexit.
  • The Times: The City is poised for one of the biggest shake-ups since the Big Bang reforms of the 1980s as Mifid II regulations come into force today aimed at making markets safer and fairer for investors.
  • Financial Times: Marks and Spencer has sold its Hong Kong and Macau operations to Al-Futtaim, a Dubai conglomerate and franchise partner, as part of a plan to overhaul its global operations.
  • Financial Times: Steinhoff International, the South African retailer, has warned that accounting irregularities began at least a year earlier than previously acknowledged.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Ryanair has applied for an operating licence from UK regulators amid growing concern that Britain could leave the European Union without a deal on aviation.
  • Financial Times: Germany has handed the country’s largest futures exchange a last-minute reprieve from implementing a set of reforms that amount to the biggest change in Europe’s financial markets in a decade.
  • Financial Times: European factories have reported their strongest month since before the creation of the euro, capping off a much better than expected year for businesses in the single currency area.

Business and economics

  • Financial Times: Oil rose to its highest level since 2015 on Tuesday, climbing to an intraday high above $67 a barrel as hedge funds placed a record bet that Brent crude’s near 35% rally over the past six months will continue into the new year, with protests in Iran stoking buying.
  • The Guardian: BP has said Donald Trump’s sweeping changes to US taxes will knock about $1.5 billion (£1.1 billion) off its profits for the end of 2017.
  • Daily Mail: Doom-mongering Crispin Odey’s hedge fund has suffered a plunge in payments after its gloomy bets on markets went badly wrong.
  • Financial Times: Hyundai Motor and affiliate Kia Motors missed their 2017 sales target for a third straight year and forecast only a modest sales increase for this year, clouding the outlook for the South Korean carmakers.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Shares in British biotech Oncimmune have jumped almost a quarter on London’s junior market Aim after the cancer diagnostics firm struck a deal to help it break into the lucrative China market.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Streaming services such as Spotify and Apple Music now account for the majority of music consumption, according to industry figures that also show a continuing vinyl revival.
  • The Guardian: Rail bosses have defended the biggest annual increase in train fares in five years in the face of dozens of demonstrations against the rise by commuter groups and unions at the UK’s busiest stations.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Interserve has topped the list of the Government’s strategic suppliers in 2017 despite a turbulent few months in which it risked breaching its debt covenants and halved its profits.
  • The Times: Kensington Roof Gardens, one of London’s most glamorous party venues, has suddenly closed its doors after its operator, Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Group, said it was struggling to turn a profit from the grade II listed site.
  • The Times: The London-listed BBA Aviation, which does most of its business in North America, said that it had appointed Mark Johnstone as its chief executive; the 49-year-old Briton is chief operating officer of the group’s engine repair and overhaul business.
  • The Times: Ian Tyler, the chairman of Bovis Homes, who admitted last year that the group had cut corners to reach City targets, is to become chairman of Amey Group, the infrastructure business.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Music streaming company Spotify is being sued by Wixen Music Publishing for allegedly using thousands of songs, including those of Tom Petty, Neil Young and the Doors, without a license and compensation to the music publisher.
  • Financial Times: Tencent has denied it stores or analyses users’ communications from China’s most popular messaging platform, WeChat, apparently putting it at odds with government rules that require social media groups to store user records.
  • Financial Times: Dalian Wanda is significantly downsizing its ecommerce arm as the Chinese conglomerate returns to its core real estate business model.
  • The Times: Growth in China’s manufacturing sector hit a four-month high last month as factories boosted production to meet a surprise increase in orders.

Share tips, comment and bids

  • The Times (Tempus share tips): Miners could provide a Midas touch; BUY Centamin and Fresnillo.
  • Daily Mail: Funding Circle is planning to meet investment banks within the next few months to choose a suitable adviser for the listing, which could take place as early as autumn, according to reports.
  • Daily Mail: Royal Dutch Shell has announced the termination of plans to sell its Danish refining business to local firm Dansk Olieselskab for an estimated £60 million.
  • The Times: Chargemaster, the self-proclaimed leading provider of electric car charging points in Britain, is said to be planning another attempt to come to market, four years after it pulled the plug on a bid to float on the London Stock Exchange.
  • Financial Times: French private equity group PAI Partners is in exclusive talks to buy packaging company Albéa in a $1.5 billion deal in a second attempt at selling it after owners Sun European Partners failed to get competitive bids more than a year ago.
  • The Times (Comment): Only the services sector can deliver for Britain, despite a factory boom.

2 comments so far. Why not have your say?

Alan Tonks

Jan 03, 2018 at 11:31

“UK looks to join Pacific trade group after Brexit”

This looks a lot like desperation to me, with a Government that lacks any sense of reality.

report this

Hank Elvis Dobbs (texan)

Jan 03, 2018 at 14:54

I Like pineapples

report this

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