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Monday Papers: Pfizer makes ‘final’ £69bn offer for AstraZeneca

Monday Papers: Pfizer makes ‘final’ £69bn offer for AstraZeneca

Top stories

  • Financial Times: Pfizer has made a final £69 billion offer for AstraZeneca and vowed to walk away if the UK company’s board does not agree to talks over a deal that would create the world’s biggest pharmaceuticals maker by sales.
  • Financial Times: AT&T has agreed to buy DirecTV in a $48.5 billion deal that will further shake up US pay-TV market.
  • Financial Times: Deutsche Bank has turned to the Qatari royal family as part of plans to raise €8 billion as the lender attempts to draw a line under concerns over its capital strength; Frankfurt-based bank is raising €6.3 billion in a rights issue and a further €1.75 billion directly from Paramount Services Holdings, the investment fund of the Qatari royal family.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Beijing has ordered an "unprecedented" build up of oil reserves as West prepares for possible oil sanctions against Russia.
  • Financial Times: Replenished buyout funds competing for a shrinking pool of large assets are pushing prices of private equity deals to historic highs.
  • The Daily Telegraph: The UK's top professional investors think stock markets in the UK and US are over-valued raising fears of a crash.

Business and economics

  • Financial Times: Facebook is going head to head with rival Snapchat in the video-chat app market as the social networking group scrambles to win back users from the popular ephemeral messaging app.
  • Financial Times: Cisco’s chief executive has written to President Barack Obama warning of a collapse of trust in US technology after evidence emerged showing the National Security Agency breaking into his company’s equipment.
  • Financial Times: The largest UK government contract awarded so far this year went to Serco, even though the outsourcer is still under investigation by the Serious Fraud Office for alleged overcharging, according to a study by Arvato, a business processing company.
  • Financial Times: BT will attempt to stem the tide of angry customer complaints about its broadband connections today with plans to employ a further 1,600 engineers to install and repair its copper and fibre network across Britain.
  • Financial Times: The eurozone sovereign debt crisis had its roots in the dangerous imbalances which built up across member states; now officials are pinning their hopes on a new regulatory toolkit as a key plank to keep the single currency together.
  • Financial Times: The balance of power in the industry is changing with carmakers' greater reliance on the small cadre of motor industry part suppliers.
  • Financial Times: Multinational companies operating in China have been forced to accelerate reviews of their internal compliance and staff training practices, after accusations of criminal activity against the former head of GlaxoSmithKline’s China unit sent shockwaves through the foreign business community.
  • Financial Times: Sales of bundled US corporate debt known as collateralised loan obligations are on course to surpass levels reached at the height of the credit bubble, as the relentless search for yield leads investors to abandon caution.
  • Financial Times: Mobile payments start-up Square – launched by Twitter’s Jack Dorsey and valued in January at $5 billion – this week abandoned its three-year-old Square Wallet app.
  • Financial Times: Northern Health Sciences Alliance has brought together eight English universities with a combined research income of £740 million and eight NHS Trusts with 14.5 million patients – and announced partnerships with US, UK and Swedish companies to develop new products.
  • Financial Times: The Swiss public has narrowly rejected its government’s $3.4 billion plan to buy 22 Gripen fighter jets from Saab, dealing a blow to the Swedish defence company.
  • Financial Times: First-quarter revenues at the world’s largest investment banks have declined at a faster rate than in previous years, after a sharp fall in bond trading weighed on their businesses.
  • Financial Times: Royal Bank of Scotland is to wind down its interest-rate trading operations as rising regulatory costs squeeze the unit’s profitability.
  • Financial Times: Lacklustre earnings in the first three months of the year left European company shares vulnerable to a rapid price retreat last week, as deflation fears gripped equity markets.
  • Financial Times: Non-bank lenders have become a critical source of funding over the past five years for mid-market UK companies, according to Grant Thornton; A survey of 100 mid-market companies – those with turnover between £50 million and £100 million – found 79% agreed that non-bank lenders were perceived positively or very positively.
  • Financial Times: Citic Group, China’s largest conglomerate by revenue has invested more than $50 billion in shadow banking products over the past three years, highlighting the proliferation of riskier financing channels in the world’s second-largest economy.
  • Financial Times: Political pressure to keep currency inside the country is beginning to affect the way Russian companies set their dividends, according to research from Henderson Global Investors.
  • Financial Times: The British telecoms regulator has warned that proposed European rules safeguarding “net neutrality” could be damaging if they fail to recognise the need for internet management.
  • Financial Times: Bill McDermott, a telegenic US salesman, is not due to take over as sole chief executive of SAP until later this week, but already there are signs the business software group will be transformed under his leadership.
  • Financial Times: Prudential is weighing a plan to sell US-style pension products in Britain in the latest sign that George Osborne’s Budget reforms are transforming life insurers’ business models.
  • Daily Express: According to the Global Dividend Index from Henderson Global Investors the world’s listed companies paid their investors a best-ever £135.79 billion in the first three months of the year, up 31.4% on the same time in 2013.
  • Daily Mail: GlencoreXstrata will face a fresh grilling over its business deals in the Congo with Israeli businessman Dan Gertler at its annual meeting tomorrow.
  • The Guardian: Standard Chartered is under pressure to back down on executive pay and overhaul its communications with shareholders, having suffered a rebellion at its annual general meeting.
  • The Guardian: Lord Myners has urged the Co-operative Group not to let negotiations over his recommended reforms delay the changes he thinks necessary if the supermarket and funeral homes business is to survive.
  • The Guardian: Credit Suisse chief executive Brady Dougan came under further pressure to resign on Sunday, with a key figure in Switzerland's largest party becoming the latest politician to call for a change in the bank's leadership over its role in helping rich Americans dodge tax.
  • The Guardian: The combined fortune of Britain's richest 1,000 people has hit a new high of £519 billion – equivalent to a third of the nation's economic output, and double the figure of five years ago.
  • The Daily Telegraph: PwC study sees capital overtake New York and Beijing in ranking of 30 leading cities.

Share tips, comment and bids

  • Financial Times: Zoopla, the property website specialist, is preparing to press the button this week on a stock market launch with a mooted valuation of about £1 billion.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Boots, Britain's biggest chemist, could be owned by the US company within eight months in £10.5 billion deal offered by Walgreens.
  • Daily Express: B&M Retail, which sells a range of goods such as trampolines, lawnmowers and nappies at low prices from 370 stores, is set announce a £2.5 billion float this week.
  • Daily Express: Feedback is planning a healthy future on Aim after acquiring medical imaging software companies Cambridge Computed Imaging and TexRAD.
  • Daily Express: A communication services specialist, Timico Technologies hopes to raise £15 million in the float, giving it a market value of £55 million when its shares start trading on 30 May.
  • Financial Times (Lex): UK shale gas: heating up.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Deutsche Bank: making capital.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Investment banks: dead trees.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Mitsui & Co: trading up.

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