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Friday Papers: Draghi intervention startles markets

Friday Papers: Draghi intervention startles markets

Top stories

  • Financial Times: Mario Draghi startled markets on Thursday cutting interest rates to a record low and pledging to buy hundreds of billions of euros of private sector bonds in a dramatic move to save the eurozone from economic stagnation.
  • Financial Times: BP acted with gross negligence and wilful misconduct in the Deepwater Horizon disaster, exposing it to penalties of up to $18 billion, a US court has ruled.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Argentina voted to move debt ignoring US claims it's 'illegal'; Argentina is also considering adding France as a jurisdiction for making bond payments after $1.5 billion default.
  • The Guardian: Economic growth will slow in the second half of the year as the effect of improved confidence and better credit conditions starts to wear off, the CBI has predicted.
  • The Guardian: Two nuclear stations that play a vital role helping to keep Britain's already fragile electricity system intact could be out of action till the end of the year, EDF Energy said on Thursday; the ongoing problems at Heysham 1 and Hartlepool reactors, taken offline last month, forced Centrica, a 20% owner of the atomic fleet with EDF, to issue a profit warning.
  • The Independent: Contractors and agents working on behalf of a major London-based oil company Soco International paid bribes to officials and rebels in the Democratic Republic of Congo in their bid to explore for oil in Africa’s oldest national park, according to anti-corruption activists.
  • Financial Times: Goldman Sachs is reviving its plan to tap the growing market for Islamic bonds, by aiming to become the second global financial institution to issue a sukuk.
  • Financial Times: The Co-operative Group has said that the worst is behind it, after 2013’s “disastrous” £2.5 billion loss – announcing a return to pre-tax profit and the permanent appointment of Richard Pennycook as chief executive.
  • Financial Times: Hewlett-Packard considered pulling out of its disastrous $11 billion acquisition of Autonomy before the deal closed, court documents have revealed.

Business and economics

  • Financial Times: A shift from higher to lower paying industries has helped to push UK earnings growth to a record low, research for the Trades Union Congress has found.
  • Financial Times: The chairman of Lloyd’s of London has become the latest head of a large financial institution to throw his weight behind the campaign to keep Scotland in the UK, arguing that the insurance market would be “best served” if the union remained intact.
  • Financial Times: A potential rise in initial public offerings and mergers and acquisitions is likely to boost hiring in the City this autumn after a flat period in the summer, a recruiter has forecast.
  • Financial Times: The EU is preparing to bar Russia’s state-controlled oil companies from raising funds on European capital markets, a significant expansion of the bloc’s economic sanctions that would hit some of the country’s largest energy groups, including Rosneft.
  • Financial Times: Inequality in the US rose sharply in the past three years as a recovery in growth failed to turn around one of the defining trends of the modern economy.
  • Financial Times: German banks dismissed the European Central Bank’s surprise interest rate cut and asset-purchase programme on Thursday as largely useless for achieving its stated aim of reviving stagnant economic growth.
  • Financial Times: Record exports helped push the US trade deficit to its lowest level in six months in July, providing the world economy with another encouraging sign about the health of the US recovery.
  • Financial Times: Three former Goldman Sachs star bankers have called off their $2 billion investment venture targeting Russian deals; DMC Partners had planned to invest the money in fast-growing companies in emerging markets, including Russia.
  • Financial Times: Alent, the speciality chemicals manufacturer, on Thursday announced the surprise departure of its chief executive after less than two years in the role.
  • Financial Times: Dyson, the company behind the bagless vacuum cleaner and bladeless fan, has finally achieved a longstanding ambition of its founder with the launch of a robotic vacuum cleaner that has taken 16 years to develop.
  • Financial Times: Coal India, the world’s largest coal miner by output, has said it faces the threat of strike action this month, raising fresh fears over fuel shortages for India’s financially strapped power sector.
  • Financial Times: Boeing has forecast that China will overtake the US as the world’s largest aviation market, extending a surge in single-aisle aircraft demand.
  • Financial Times: Serco received a welcome boost as it was selected as preferred bidder to continue running Australia’s onshore immigration detention services; the company on Thursday said a new contract, which includes Australian territories such as Christmas Island, would be signed pending commercial negotiations expected to conclude in the next few months.
  • Financial Times: The former Société Générale trader, who almost brought his former employer to the brink of collapse after losing €4.9 billion by placing unauthorised trading positions, has won an appeal which will see him wear an electronic tag and placed under supervision.
  • Financial Times: Vice Media has raised $500 million in a funding round that values the group at $2.5 billion, in the latest example of how investors are pouring money into media companies that specialise in creating content for advertisers.
  • Financial Times: Microsoft has been hit by a lawsuit from Getty Images, owner of one of the largest libraries of digital images, over a new feature of its Bing search engine that encourages other websites to embed unlicensed pictures they find on the web.
  • Financial Times: Ethanol made from corn waste at a new plant in the US will be cost-competitive with petrol “in a couple of years”, according to Feike Sijbesma, chief executive of Royal DSM, a Dutch biotech company.
  • Financial Times: IHS, the African mobile infrastructure group, will double the size of its business following a $2 billion deal to acquire more than 9,000 telecoms towers from MTN, the South African-based telecoms group.
  • Financial Times: Bilfinger, the German industrial services company, on Thursday issued its third profit warning in two months as it grapples with upheaval in European energy markets partly caused by Germany’s transition to renewable energy.
  • Financial Times: Diageo’s emerging markets headache worsened after United Spirits, the Indian drinks company it controls posted a Rs44 billion ($728 million) annual net loss, impaired by a hefty writedown on the sale of its Whyte & Mackay whisky.
  • Financial Times: Go-Ahead is proposing to increase its dividend for the first time in six years after securing Britain’s biggest rail franchise and reporting robust growth in its bus business.
  • Financial Times: Shares in Standard Life leapt 8% on Thursday as investors prepared for a windfall following the FTSE 100 pension group’s disposal of its largest overseas asset.
  • Financial Times: SuperGroup, the owner of the Superdry brand known for its distinctive logo-laden clothing, has benefited from the UK’s dismal weather in August, reporting an uptick in sales in a trading update on Thursday.
  • Daily Mail: Betfair suffered a major investor revolt yesterday after relaxing targets for its former management team to collect share bonuses; a boost in profits from the World Cup wasn’t enough to assuage angered shareholders, and 32% voted against directors’ pay.
  • Daily Mail: UK interest rates were kept at their historic low of 0.5% yesterday amid concerns over low wage growth and signs that the housing market recovery is losing steam.
  • Daily Express: EASYJET will today report its busiest ever day after enjoying a record August; the airline will today fly more than 210,000 passengers checking in on 1,451 flights, marking the busiest day in its 19-year history.
  • The Guardian: Coca-Cola has agreed to put traffic light-style labels on its drinks sold in the UK to help tackle the growing obesity crisis; the move represents a major U-turn by the drinks giant, which makes brands such as Coke, Dr Pepper and Powerade, as it opposed last year's introduction of government-backed "hybrid" nutrition labels.
  • The Guardian: Bus and rail operator Go-Ahead has announced leaping profits and record passenger numbers, as it gets ready to take over Britain's biggest rail franchise.
  • The Guardian: British consumers continued to splash out on new cars in August, extending the record unbroken run of sales growth to two-and-a-half years; new car sales were 9.5% higher than August 2013, with 72,163 vehicles registered, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).
  • The Independent: Another horsemeat scandal is inevitable unless a dedicated food fraud unit is launched to infiltrate the highly organised criminal traders of illegal meats, according to an independent review.
  • The Independent: McLaren boss Ron Dennis yesterday declared his Formula 1 team may not be having much success on the track, but its finances have rarely been stronger; the company reported a dramatic swing back into profit last year thanks to the rising revenues from the sport and sponsorship.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Google is working with Ukraine security service, claimed Russian lawmaker; a member of Vladimir Putin's party said Google could supply US government with information on Russian citizens.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Phones4U debts are under review for downgrade after its split with Vodafone; Moody's placed mobile phone retailer under more scrutiny as it awaits crunch decision on supplier contract with EE.

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