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Sunday Papers: UK growth to be upgraded to 1.4%

Sunday Papers: UK growth to be upgraded to 1.4%

Top stories

  • The Sunday Telegraph: The Office for Budget Responsibility - the Government’s independent fiscal watchdog - is likely to upgrade its projection for UK growth in 2013 to 1.4%, from a forecast of 0.6% in March.
  • The Sunday Telegraph: Barclays invests in shale gas revolution; the bank is backing the search for shale gas in Yorkshire and could fund fracking in the area as early as next year.
  • Mail on Sunday: The Co-operative Bank cleared the last major hurdle in its £1.5 billion rescue plan on Friday as bondholders voted overwhelmingly to allow hedge funds to take major stakes in the new group.
  • The Independent on Sunday: Royal Bank of Scotland and Standard Life are among the listed businesses based north of the border that are under pressure to tell shareholders their plans should Scotland vote for independence.
  • Mail on Sunday: Bank of England boss Mark Carney’s attempts to calm the housing market could be doomed to failure as banks will still be able to access a flood of cheap cash to provide rock-bottom home loans for years.
  • The Sunday Telegraph: Amazon said customers ordered four million items on "Black Friday" the highest in its 15 year history.

Business and economics

  • Mail on Sunday: Tesco will come under pressure this week to justify its store expansion programme when it unveils a drop in UK sales; chief executive Phil Clarke is expected to say on Wednesday that like-for-like sales fell 1.5% in the three months to the end of November.
  • Mail on Sunday: One of Britain’s biggest payday lenders is being sued amid accusations that it broke the law by offering ‘predatory’ loans to customers; lawyers in the US allege that executives at DFC Global, known as Dollar Financial in the UK and which owns The Money Shop and Payday UK, overcharged for loans and issued them to borrowers that could not repay.
  • The Sunday Telegraph: IGas starts drilling for shale gas at protest site; the chief executive of the shale gas explorer has confirmed it has started drilling at Barton Moss, near Manchester.
  • The Independent on Sunday: The much-criticised water regulator has been accused of costing bill-payers nearly £20 million after hiring consultants at the same time that it was pressuring utilities to reduce their prices.
  • Mail on Sunday: A disturbing recording of a phone call made by officials at Royal Bank of Scotland to a firm struggling to survive appears to back up claims that the taxpayer-owned bank bullied small businesses.
  • The Sunday Telegraph: Luvo, a smartphone developed to be sold in Indonesia, is to launch this week claiming to be the first British smartphone designed for emerging markets.
  • Mail on Sunday: Energy firms are set to say that household bills will rise less than expected following an announcement today by George Osborne promising to cut Government levies.
  • The Sunday Telegraph: B&Q staff share £15 million pre-Christmas payout; more than 1,400 head office and store workers will collect an average profit of £6,867 from the scheme.
  • Mail on Sunday: John Lewis plans to recreate the high street in its shops by introducing a host of services including barbers, opticians, bureaux de change, restaurants - even post offices.
  • The Sunday Telegraph: Wellness Foods, is finding it difficult to offload its Rowse Honey brand, according to sources and Dorset Cereals, famed for its packaged porridge, is the next obvious sale candidate.

Share tips, comment and bids

  • The Sunday Telegraph (Questor share tip): Rio Tinto accelerates mining production; the largest iron ore miner in the world is set to take advantage of a recovery in commodity prices – Buy.
  • The Sunday Telegraph (Questor share tip): Housebuilders still a hold for income; the best returns are probably behind the housebuilders but the panic over removal of Bank of England support is overdone.
  • Mail on Sunday (Midas share tip): Tritax Big Box is the first listed property company specialising in UK-based gigantic warehouses - these sites are in demand and the stock should prove rewarding. Buy.
  • Financial Times: Pearson has sold financial data firm Mergermarket to private equity house BC Partners for £382 million.
  • Mail on Sunday: A major assault on international markets is being planned by internet fashion sensation Boohoo as it prepares for a £500 million flotation next year.
  • The Sunday Telegraph: Four Seasons in running for care homes; the care home business owned by Guy Hands’ Terra Firma, is among the bidders for a company rescued from the collapse of Southern Cross.
  • The Sunday Telegraph: Media groups circle as the Government plans to announce a major expansion of commercial digital radio this month.
  • The Sunday Telegraph: Kerry Group to snap up Peperami; the pork salami sausage, created by the consumer giant Unilever, was put up for sale in the summer.
  • Mail on Sunday (Comment): Mark Carney's attempt to put the brakes on soaring numbers of mortgages by restricting Funding for Lending to businesses only is surely a welcome move - if it works.
  • The Observer (Comment): Gold price plunges as confident investors pile out of safe havens; end of a 13-year boom as US economic upturn sees investors confidently selling gold and buying shares.
  • The Sunday Telegraph (Comment): With a second straight month of rising industrial output, it is starting to suggest that Japan might actually be on track to hit its target of 2% inflation.

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