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Wednesday Papers: Lagarde and Carney warn financial sector

Wednesday Papers: Lagarde and Carney warn financial sector

Top stories

  • Financial Times: Christine Lagarde, the managing director of the International Monetary Fund, has warned that “a fierce industry pushback” by the financial sector is delaying much-needed reforms and risks destabilising the global economy.
  • Financial Times: Britain’s Serious Fraud Office has launched a criminal inquiry into GlaxoSmithKline less than two weeks after the drugmaker was accused of “massive and systemic bribery” in China.
  • The Independent: TSB chief executive, Paul Pester, has defended the timing of its IPO amid fears of investor fatigue, but insisted that 'the decision ultimately is for Lloyds'.
  • The Guardian: Bad debts could be putting banks and building societies at greater risk than thought – and leading them to overstate profits – because their auditors are failing to do a thorough job, according to the accounting standards regulator.
  • Financial Times: Ministers in London have misled Scottish voters over how much it would cost to set up an independent government in Edinburgh, according to the man whose analysis underpins the Treasury’s case for Scotland remaining in the UK.
  • Financial Times: Siemens said it was preparing to make an official bid for Alstom as it lobbied the French parliament for its idea to create two European champions in power generation and rail and defeat a rival offer by General Electric.
  • The Independent: Tesco’s international operations came under renewed pressure today faced after the UK supermarket giant failed to find a suitor for its Turkish business.

Business and economics

  • Financial Times: Germany is considering the creation of special “cyber courts” to rule on clashes between individuals seeking to protect their privacy and search engines after a landmark court ruling ordered Google and its rivals to delete links to sensitive personal information.
  • Financial Times: Inequality is “demonstratively” growing and risks undermining the basic social contract of fairness, Mark Carney, the Bank of England governor, said on Tuesday.
  • Financial Times: More than half of the UK’s small manufacturers plan to take on more staff during the next few months as recruitment confidence reaches a three-year high, research has found.
  • Financial Times: Exports from both advanced and leading emerging economies slowed sharply in the first three months of this year, according to new OECD figures that raise concerns about the health of the global recovery.
  • Financial Times: South Africa’s economy has contracted for the first time since the global financial crisis of 2008-09 after mining production fell the most in nearly 50 years as a result of a crippling strike at the world’s top platinum producers.
  • Financial Times: Sir Philip Green is in talks with food retailers about using space in his BHS department stores, as the recent opening of a food department in an Essex BHS has significantly increased sales across the rest of the shop.
  • Financial Times: Three former Barclays traders appeared in a London court yesterday, becoming the first Americans to face criminal charges in the sprawling global probe into alleged widespread manipulation of the Libor interbank lending rate.
  • Financial Times: Pimco has lured back Paul McCulley, a high-profile former member of the bond fund manager’s investment committee, as it bulks up its senior ranks following the departure of Mohamed El-Erian earlier this year.
  • Financial Times: The pace of passing major financial reform rules has slowed to a crawl at the US Securities and Exchange Commission, frustrating some officials at the SEC and at other regulatory agencies who are upset by the lack of activity.
  • Financial Times: Ronnie Hanna, chairman of AG Barr, told shareholders at the Scottish group’s annual meeting on Tuesday that he would be stepping down at the end of the year.
  • Financial Times: Bank of America said it had resubmitted its proposed capital plans to the Federal Reserve after an accounting error forced it to suspend and revise its plan for a $4bn share buyback and its first increase in dividends since 2007.
  • Financial Times: Songkick, one of the first consumer-internet start-ups to take up residence in London’s Shoreditch district, has doubled its music community’s audience to 10 million in two years.
  • Financial Times: Solocal, the French directories publisher formerly known as PagesJaunes, is to launch a capital raising and debt restructuring to buy the struggling group time to shift its business model further online.
  • Financial Times: Silicon Valley is in danger of promoting a new wave of Bitcoin services for consumers and merchants before the digital currency is secure or stable enough for the mass market, according to some entrepreneurs and financiers working in the field.
  • Financial Times: Rightmove chairman Scott Forbes has sold almost half his shares in the UK’s largest property website.
  • Financial Times: The founder of Telecity has secured funding from venture capitalist Jon Moulton for his return to the data centre market almost a decade after falling victim to the dotcom bust.
  • Financial Times: Some of Europe’s biggest insurance companies are building up stakes in the property market as banks’ reluctance to lend combined with the economic recovery leaves a gap for alternative lenders; M&G, the investment arm of insurer Prudential plc, has invested £900 million in the past 18 months through its secured property income fund, the company said on Tuesday, taking its total to £2 billion.
  • Daily Mail: Warmer weather and dry spells on Sunday boosted the number of visitors to the UK's shops during an otherwise rain-lashed Bank Holiday weekend; wet weather contributed to an overall 8.3 per cent decline in year-on-year footfall figures across high streets, retail parks and shopping centres on Saturday, on a crucial weekend for trading, retail data experts said.
  • Daily Express: Nearly £1 billion was wiped off the stockmarket value of AstraZeneca yesterday as its shares dived following US rival Pfizer’s withdrawal of its £69billion takeover offer.
  • The Independent: The Government collected a record £23.9 billion for the year to March in additional tax as it stepped up efforts to tackle tax avoidance, new figures show.
  • The Guardian: Hector Sants, the former chief City regulator, has introduced a national network of churches, communities and credit unions that aims to take on payday lenders.
  • The Guardian: Morrisons is asking suppliers to cover the cost of ensuring products meet regulations in the latest of a series of payment demands as the supermarket faces falling profits.
  • The Guardian: Propelled by a soaring stock market, the median pay package for a CEO rose above eight figures for the first time last year; the head of a typical large public company earned a record $10.5 million, an increase of 8.8% from $9.6 million in 2012, according to an Associated Press/Equilar pay study.
  • The Guardian: The beleaguered Co-operative Bank has appointed a new chair to its values and ethics committee as it fights to restore its reputation; Laura Carstensen's appointment came as the bank said it had completed a £400 million fundraising after shareholders approved the transaction, which was 2.5 times oversubscribed, at a general meeting.
  • The Guardian: More than half of the developing world's workers are trapped in vulnerable jobs, working for themselves or in unpaid family work, according to a report that calls for better quality employment to drive economic growth.
  • The Guardian: Online retailer The Hut has ruled out an IPO this year as technology groups launching on the stock market have endured a rollercoaster ride.
  • The Daily Telegraph: RBS to axe hundreds of US jobs as the taxpayer-owned bank will shed up to 400 jobs in its US mortgage business in an effort to cut assets to less than $50 billion.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Barclays has advised investors that a separate Scotland would be twice as likely to get its own currency as keep the pound.

Share tips, comment and bids

  • Financial Times: Japan’s second biggest property developer has announced plans to raise a record Y367 billion ($3.6 billion) by selling new shares, in a sign of confidence that “Abenomics” will continue to push up rents and property prices in the world’s biggest metropolitan area.
  • Financial Times: Poultry company Pilgrim’s Pride has offered to buy Hillshire Brands for $6.4 billion including debt, in a deal meant to head off Hillshire’s recent bid for Pinnacle Foods and create one of the US’s largest meat producers.
  • Financial Times: Debt-laden pub group Punch Taverns has unveiled a restructuring plan that would result in “significant equity dilution”, sending shares in the group down by a quarter.
  • Daily Express: Europe’s second largest icecream maker, after Wall’s owner Unilever, North Yorkshire-based R&R Ice Cream is paying £247 million for 107-year-old Peters Food Group from Pacific Private Equity Partners.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Rio Tinto: Guinea digs.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Pilgrim’s / Hillshire: tastes like chicken.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Punch Taverns: from deluded to diluted.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Euronext: trading places.
  • Financial Times (Lex): TSB: safe as houses.

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