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Friday Papers: Rolls-Royce leads drive for drone ships

Friday Papers: Rolls-Royce leads drive for drone ships

Top stories

  • Financial Times: Amazon may have embraced the robotics revolution with the promise of drones making deliveries to your door, but Rolls-Royce has taken it one step further and is predicting the first drone cargo ship will enter service in the next decade.
  • Financial Times: German pharmaceutical group Merck is seeking a partnership with an Iranian manufacturer to produce medicines in the country in a sign that western companies are putting their faith in President Hassan Rouhani’s reformist drive and an easing of international sanctions.
  • Financial Times: BP is appealing against a ruling ordering it to pay compensation under its settlement for the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster to some businesses that suffered no losses as a result of the oil spill.
  • Financial Times: European and Asian banks will have more time to fight possible US additional capital rules after the Federal Reserve pushed plans to implement final measures into the new year, according to people familiar with the matter.
  • The Guardian: Toshiba's chief executive, Hisao Tanaka, said an agreement to take a controlling shareholding in the British NuGen consortium could be in place as early as January.
  • Financial Times: Rusal, the aluminium producer controlled by oligarch Oleg Deripaska, is taking the London Metal Exchange to court, claiming a crackdown on the metals warehousing industry is a breach of its “human rights”.
  • Daily Mail: The latest UK car manufacturing figures showed that 1,286,287 motors were produced in the first 11 months of the year, a rise of 5.4% compared to last year with sales also up by an impressive 9.9%.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Smartphones will be talking to their users and the tech giants Google and Apple are determined to have the edge.

Business and economics

  • Financial Times: David Cameron’s new wave of 24 enterprise zones is falling far short of the government’s targets for job creation, with officials braced for them to deliver as little as 11 per cent of their original 2015 target.
  • Financial Times: Plans to allow cheques to be paid into banks by smartphone are set to cut processing times from six to two days, the British Treasury said on Thursday adding it would consult on legislation in 2014.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Centre for Economics and Business Research predicts the UK will move up one place to overtake France as the world's fifth-largest economy by 2018, and leapfrog Germany by 2030.
  • Financial Times: The $5.8 billion agreement with creditors that was announced late on Christmas Eve sent stock of Óleo e Gás Participações, formerly known as OGX, up as much as 31.6% before moderating their gains to about 21% in late trade to finish at R$0.23 per share on Thursday.
  • The Guardian: Atena Yazdi, the wife of a UK businessman Abbas Yazdanpanah Yazdi who went missing in Dubai has accused the Serious Fraud Office of providing Iranian prosecutors with detailed personal information about her husband, including the address from which she believes he was abducted.
  • Financial Times: Taiwan’s Fair Trade Commission fined Apple $666,700 for restricting the prices charged by local telecoms carriers for their iPhone contracts, the first time Apple has been fined for such practices.
  • The Independent: City watchdogs have racked up a record £472.3 million in fines in 2013, with less than a week to go.
  • The Guardian: Early-rising bargain hunters flocked to retailers across the UK on Thursday but high street visits tailed off by the afternoon as shops reported a 1.5% rise in Boxing Day shopping trips compared with last year.
  • Financial Times: The Christmas shopping frenzy may be over but there are signs on both sides of the Atlantic that bargain-hunters are seeking deeper discounts, raising questions about retailers’ profitability over the crucial holiday trading period.
  • Financial Times: After enduring their first negative year in more than a decade, US bond investors face further challenges in 2014 as the Federal Reserve starts retreating from its era of easy money.
  • Financial Times: Interest rates in China’s money markets stabilised on Thursday but concerns remain over high levels of debt in the economy at a time when growth is slowing and the central government is predicting a third consecutive year of slowdown.
  • Financial Times: This year private equity firms have completed a record number of buyouts in South Korea, with 40 deals worth $7.1 billion representing nearly a quarter of the country’s $31.3 billion mergers and acquisitions activity, according to MergerMarket.
  • Financial Times: Rising demand for hybrid powered cars drove Toyota’s UK production up 65% in 2013, as a focus on green technology reversed years of falling output at the company’s British operations.
  • The Guardian: A computer glitch at Delta Air Lines on Thursday resulted in customers being able to buy unusually cheap fares.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Handbag designer and accessories maker Anya Hindmarch pinpoints Korea, Hong Kong and China for expansion.
  • Financial Times: Stanhope, the regeneration specialist, is set to sign a groundbreaking deal with Hammersmith & Fulham Council, giving it first refusal on the redevelopment of many of the local authority’s housing estates for the next 15 years.
  • Financial Times: Banks will have to share information about the creditworthiness of the small businesses they lend to, under proposals aiming to improve the supply of finance to companies.

Share tips, comment and bids

  • The Guardian (Comment): As the economy recovers on both sides of the Atlantic, next year will bring a different set of pressures for senior executives – and one bank governor. Some are just changing the nameplates on the executive suite door; others are trying to complete turnaround plans or maintain strong growth.
  • The Daily Telegraph (Comment): Reverse shopping' lays bare the ongoing struggle in the US.
  • Daily Mail (Comment – Alex Brummer): The forecast, by the hugely respected Centre For Economic And Business Research, suggests that if the Tory-led Government pursues its goal of a low-tax economy which is open to free trade, and if successive governments continue on the same path, then it will once again be possible to put the ‘Great’ back into Britain.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Overseas dealmaking: Chinese and Indian companies expand overseas but China is more successful
  • Financial Times (Lex): Turkey: An insider’s market deters the long-term investment flows the country needs
  • Financial Times (Lex): African brewers: Easy for brewers to get drunk on African growth – just watch local obstacles
  • Financial Times (Lex): Islamic finance: Non-Muslim countries are jostling to step on to the action bandwagon

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