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Thursday Papers: Yellen holds firm on rate rises

Thursday Papers: Yellen holds firm on rate rises

Top stories

  • Financial Times: Janet Yellen has mounted a forceful defence of the US Federal Reserve’s decision to keep monetary policy loose in the face of soaring asset prices, arguing there was no need to increase interest rates to tackle financial instability because the central bank has other tools at its disposal.
  • The Guardian: The average price of a property in London has leapt by more than a quarter over the past year, a rate of growth unequalled since the summer of 1987, according to the latest figures from the UK's largest building society.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Mike Ashley has finally won approval from Sports Direct shareholders for a bonus, despite a major rebellion among investors; the bonus scheme will see 25 million shares issued to Mr Ashley, Sports Direct executives, and roughly 3,000 staff -a payout worth £180 million at the company’s current share price.
  • Financial Times: Andy Haldane, the Bank of England’s chief economist, defended central banks on Wednesday night against the charge that their exceptionally loose monetary policy and asset purchases are pushing many financial markets to dangerous highs.
  • Financial Times: Macau has leapfrogged Switzerland to become the world’s fourth richest territory per person, according to the World Bank, thanks to the influx of mainland Chinese gamblers and tourists.
  • The Independent: Mothercare has rejected two bids from US rival Destination Maternity which is eyeing a takeover of the struggling UK High Street chain.
  • The Daily Telegraph: The City regulator has “no clear evidence” that banks are rigging the price of gold, although the process to set it is open to abuse, an official at the watchdog has said.

Business and economics

  • Financial Times: Shanghai is leading a race to host the headquarters of a new “Brics” development bank that will challenge for the first time the US postwar dominance of multilateral lending institutions, people familiar with the matter in Brasília and Washington said.
  • Financial Times: Investors withdrew money from Bill Gross’s Pimco Total Return fund, the world’s largest fixed income mutual fund, for the 14th consecutive month in June, as Mr Gross vowed to put “fear on our competitors’ faces again”.
  • Financial Times: Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer, has pledged that the social network will not try to control its users’ emotions, as another regulator said it would quiz the company on its psychological experiment.
  • Financial Times: The British investigator and his American wife and business partner detained in China because of their work for GlaxoSmithKline will be tried in secret as concerns grow about their health, according to people close to the family.
  • Financial Times: Ed Miliband will celebrate profit and wealth creation and laud the “great, dynamic businesses of our country”, in a speech today that marks a sharp change of tone towards corporate ­Britain.
  • Financial Times: Scottish independence would generate a decade’s worth of work for City lawyers, according to the man representing them, as the Square Mile wakes up to the opportunities and threats posed by separation.
  • Financial Times: David Cameron will call on the “silent majority” of Scottish voters opposed to independence to speak out as the referendum campaign enters its final months.
  • Financial Times: Drugmakers have welcomed the appointment of Jim O’Neill, the former Goldman Sachs chief economist, to lead a UK government-backed push to tackle the rising threat of antibiotic-resistant superbugs.
  • Financial Times: Firefighters in England and Wales are to join a one-day strike by public sector workers next week in one of the biggest protests against government cuts since the coalition came to power.
  • Financial Times: Britain needs to push for EU reform from within the bloc or risk losing millions of jobs and investment, the head of UK manufacturers’ trade body has warned.
  • Financial Times: Shanghai is leading a race to host the headquarters of a new “Brics” development bank that will challenge for the first time the US postwar dominance of multilateral lending institutions, people familiar with the matter in Brasília and Washington said.
  • Financial Times: China Eastern Airlines has become the first of the country’s big three carriers to launch a budget airline, in a move that may help accelerate the development of the sector in northeast Asia.
  • Financial Times: PSA Peugeot Citroën will build a fifth factory in China to increase its production there by a third, as it races to catch up with rivals in the world’s biggest car market.
  • Financial Times: Hong Kong police arrested more than 500 people in the culmination of a day of protests in which tens of thousands of residents joined a massive march to push for democracy.
  • Financial Times: With the record fine levied on BNP Paribas for evading sanctions, the US authorities have unleashed a powerful weapon to deter international banks from trying to break the rules, but there is a risk it could undermine the US financial system if it is overused.
  • Financial Times: The World Cup has become the most streamed live sporting event in the US, as Americans tune in to this year’s tournament on their smartphones, tablets and computers in record numbers.
  • Financial Times: Telefónica’s €8.6 billion takeover of Germany’s E-Plus from KPN was conditionally approved by Brussels after Spain’s largest telecom operator agreed to open part of its network and divest spectrum to smaller rivals.
  • Financial Times: ExxonMobil is to invest more than $1 billion in its refinery in Antwerp, Belgium, in a rare vote of confidence in a beleaguered European industry hit by weak demand and competition from lower-cost US fuels.
  • Financial Times: South Korea’s rechargeable battery makers are bolstering efforts to expand into China, as they bet on growing demand in the world’s biggest car market on the back of Beijing’s plans to tackle air pollution by introducing more electric vehicles.
  • Financial Times: Tim Draper, a billionaire investor who is campaigning to split California into six states and who funds entrepreneurship classes for nine year olds has emerged as the mystery buyer of about $18 million of Bitcoins auctioned by the US government.
  • Financial Times: The US’s top union official has attacked car-hailing apps such as Uber and Lyft, saying that Silicon Valley’s free market ethos is a threat to consumer safety.
  • Financial Times: Hong Kong’s monetary authority has intervened to defend its currency peg for the first time since 2012 as optimism over Chinese growth and a flurry of capital market deals drove the Hong Kong dollar to the top of its trading band.
  • Financial Times: The Federal Reserve could better police the shadow banking system by using a new financial tool created to help it wind down emergency monetary easing, says a new US government report.
  • Financial Times: Shares in Blinkx, the Aim-listed online video advertising company, lost half their value on Wednesday after it warned that first-half earnings would be lower than forecast.
  • Financial Times: US advertising spending on mobile devices will pass all other digital ads in two years and account for more than a quarter of total marketing budgets by 2018, a new report predicts, as marketers chase the attention of consumers who are increasingly attached to their smartphones and tablets.
  • Financial Times: Orange, France’s largest mobile operator by subscribers, has ruled out for now any deals with its domestic competitors, deflating consolidation hopes in one or Europe’s most competitive markets.
  • Financial Times: Santander UK is establishing a $100 million venture capital fund to invest in financial technology businesses as it seeks to keep up with a rapidly evolving financial services market.
  • Daily Mail: British builders are hiring staff at the fastest rate in nearly two decades to keep up with booming demand, it emerged yesterday.
  • Daily Mail: Tullow Oil has written off £242 million in exploration costs at the half year stage, blotting a copybook renowned for a string of successes in striking black gold.
  • Daily Mail: The City watchdog has banned short selling of shares in Banco Espirito Santo in an attempt to protect the troubled Portuguese lender; the Financial Conduct Authority deployed the little-used power – which was introduced at the height of the financial crisis to prevent speculators from creating further havoc - after shares in the company fell 16% on Monday.
  • Daily Mail: Building giant Persimmon yesterday reported a 33% surge in sales – but insisted there was no bubble in the property market.
  • The Guardian: The young, minority ethnic groups and people without advanced skills are missing out on the recovery of the jobs market, and women are still getting a raw deal on pay, according to a report published on Thursday by the CBI, Britain's leading business group.
  • The Guardian: HSBC has launched a personal loan at 3.9% - and, for the first time, the interest charged is lower than the best mortgage rates on offer to first-time buyers.
  • The Guardian: The wholesale price of electricity should remain flat and could even fall, according to new research from the rating agency Moody's which will be welcomed by government and consumers.
  • Daily Express: Profits at bakery chain Greggs are set to sizzle helped by soaring demand for grab-and-go pizzas and sandwiches.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Sir William Sargent, who co-founded special effects company Framestore, said there was 'no reason' the sector could not hit £140 billion by 2024.
  • The Daily Telegraph: The Business Secretary promised more funding at the launch of a radical cross-sector bid to drive growth in Britain's film, technology, advertising, publishing and gaming industries.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Vodafone signed up to build €450 million fibre-optic network in Ireland; the joint venture with the Republic's state-owned electricity board will offer better broadband speeds than are widely available in Britain.

Share tips, comment and bids

  • Financial Times: Lavasa Corporation, the company building what it says is India’s first new hill station since the end of British colonial rule, is poised to proceed with an initial public offering delayed for years by protracted battles with environmental authorities and sluggish market conditions.
  • Financial Times: Investors who brushed aside concerns about the prospects for continental Europe’s biggest flotation in three years were rewarded on Wednesday when shares in the insurer NN leapt 6.3% in their debut trading session.
  • Financial Times: Facebook has bought LiveRail, a video advertising technology company, as part of its bid to take on TV in the battle for advertising budgets.
  • Financial Times: Investors are betting $100 million that BlaBlaCar, a French start-up that facilitates long-distance car sharing, can become the next big sharing-economy success after Airbnb and Uber.
  • Financial Times: Roche has agreed to buy Seragon Pharmaceuticals, a privately owned US biotech company, for up to $1.7 billion, in a deal that shows the world’s biggest drugmaker by market capitalisation has begun loosening the purse strings on its cash pile.
  • Financial Times: Offshore oil contractor Shelf Drilling has cancelled plans to raise $500 million through a London listing, joining Hungarian airline Wizz Air and leisurewear retailer Fat Face in the list of companies to recently pull an initial public offering.
  • Financial Times: China National Petroleum Corp and French oil major Total are in talks to transfer a stake in a joint venture oil refinery in the northeast port city of Dalian.
  • Financial Times: Tony Fernandes has sold his struggling Caterham motor racing team to an unnamed consortium of Swiss and Middle Eastern investors, bringing the chequered flag down on the Malaysian entrepreneur’s costly, failed foray into Formula One.
  • Financial Times: Urban Exposure Group, a residential development investment group is to float a cash shell on the London Stock Exchange in an attempt to raise £500 million.
  • Financial Times: Carillion has been named as the preferred bidder to redevelop the home of Liverpool Football Club as Anfield prepares for the return of Champions League football.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Bouygues Telecom: offline?
  • Financial Times (Lex): Rackspace: privacy issues.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Wesfarmers: from Coles to coal.
  • Financial Times (Lex): CIT Group: short memories.
  • Financial Times (Lex): ING: home straight.

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