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Saturday Papers: RBS forced to back down on bonus plans

Saturday Papers: RBS forced to back down on bonus plans

Top stories

  • Financial Times: George Osborne has blocked Royal Bank of Scotland from paying 200% bonuses to some of its leading bankers after meeting Liberal Democrat demands for a tighter cap on pay at the state-backed lender.
  • Daily Express: Royal Bank of Scotland is set to face claims of more than £1 billion from some of the UK’s biggest investors which believe they were misled over a massive cash call by the lender in 2008.
  • Financial Times: Western leaders are to “move swiftly” to impose additional sanctions on Russia, the White House announced on Friday night.
  • Daily Express: Bookmaker William Hill is looking to score a boost from the forthcoming football World Cup in Brazil after reporting a 14% dip in operating profit during the first quarter.
  • The Guardian: Buy-to-let investors have made £12,000 profit on every £1,000 they put into property since mortgages for landlords were first launched in 1996 - returns that have far outstripped every other type of investment, according to an analysis by one of Britain's biggest lenders.

Business and economics

  • Daily Express: Online gambling firm Bwin.party has urged its shareholders to reject a push by activist investor Jason Ader to have four of his preferred candidates appointed to the board.
  • The Guardian: GlaxoSmithKline has brought in two new executives to oversee sales and marketing in China, as Britain's biggest drugmaker tries to ensure there is no repetition of a damaging corruption scandal in that country.
  • Daily Mail: Quindell said it has begun legal proceedings against Gotham City Research - the author of a scathing dossier that wiped almost £1 billion off Quindell’s value earlier this week.
  • The Guardian: Tesco has been dealt a fresh blow by the ratings agency Moody's, which has warned it is considering cutting the supermarket chain's credit rating again.
  • Financial Times: The chief executive of Vanguard, which became the world’s largest mutual fund company by championing low costs for the small investor, has ridden to the defence of high-frequency trading firms and dismissed suggestions that the stock market is “rigged”.
  • Daily Mail: According to the Office for National Statistics retail sales volumes rose 0.1% in March compared with February, which was well ahead of the City forecast of a 0.4% fall.
  • Financial Times: Wm Morrison is to make its first foray into the London online grocery market next month, as it seeks to catch up with rivals and turn round its core supermarket business after a severe profit warning.
  • The Guardian: Publisher Pearson has become the latest company to become the focus of shareholder protests over boardroom bonuses after one in three of its investors failed to support its pay plans.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Energy giant Gazprom sets 7 May payment deadline and warns Europe it risks "severe problems" in winter unless it helps Ukraine settle debts.
  • Financial Times: The price of arabica coffee beans, used to make espressos and cappuccinos, rose to a new 26-month high this week.
  • Financial Times: Shares of Pandora Media, the US company behind the eponymous streaming music service, fell at its sharpest pace in 16 months after the company forecast slower sales growth and said it would invest aggressively to maintain its leadership position as competition intensifies.

Share tips, comment and bids

  • Financial Times: Mylan, the US drugmaker, has made a fresh bid for Swedish rival Meda valued at more than $9 billion, the latest large deal to hit the pharmaceutical market this week.
  • Daily Express: Currency exchange firm Travelex is targeting a £1 billion listing on the London Stock Exchange in May or June as it looks to expand and with confidence continuing to grow among financial services firms.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Microsoft's £4.6 billion acquisition of Nokia's mobile business has been approved by shareholders and regulators.
  • Financial Times: Friends Life faces the threat of a rift between its founder Clive Cowdery and the insurer’s senior executives as he prepares to agitate for a possible break-up of the FTSE 100 company.
  • Financial Times: French industry minister Arnaud Montebourg says that he is “concerned” about the potential sale of national engineering champion Alstom to US group General Electric, and that he is working on “other solutions”.
  • Daily Mail (Comment): One important lesson to be drawn from the Royal Bank of Scotland pay debacle is that, nearly six years after the Great Panic, Britain still suffers from a bureaucratic mistake made by Gordon Brown’s government.
  • Daily Mail (Comment): If Pfizer goes ahead with a $100 billion takeover bid for AstraZeneca, the US company should be subjected to very close questioning about its tax affairs.
  • Financial Times (Lex): US fast-food stocks are struggling in an important market, and they are not cheap – making it look like a good time for investors to stay home for dinner.

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