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Wednesday Papers: Microsoft banks on the cloud under Nadella

Wednesday Papers: Microsoft banks on the cloud under Nadella

Top stories

  • The Guardian: Veteran insider Satya Nadella named Microsoft chief executive as Bill Gates steps down as chairman; Nadella has presided over the company’s cloud software platforms and services to lead it into the post-PC age.
  • Daily Mail: Shares in RSA nudged upwards on the appointment of former Royal Bank of Scotland boss Stephen Hester as chief executive of the troubled insurer.
  • Daily Mail: Tesco Mobile has announced it is to offer both new and existing 3G customers the benefits of super-fast 4G mobile internet speeds for free.
  • Daily Mail: BP’s legal bills from the Gulf of Mexico oil spill have reached $1 billion, it emerged, as the oil giant reported a fall in profits.
  • The Guardian: George Osborne has warned that Britain's housing shortage is likely to persist for at least 10 more years.
  • The Independent: UBS has raised its bonus pool by 28% for last year after its back-to-basics policy saw a sharp recovery with pre-tax profits up 44% to Swfr4.1 billion (£2.8 billion).
  • The Daily Telegraph: Morgan Stanley to pay $1.25 billion to settle mortgage claims; settlement marks the latest big government agreement with a US banking giant in the aftermath of the housing bust.
  • Financial Times: Simon Lockett has quit as chief executive of Premier Oil, the FTSE 250 oil explorer he has led since 2005.

Business and economics

  • Daily Mail: Unexpected growth in the British construction sector revealed by an industry survey today confirmed hopes that the UK recovery is sustainable and gave a brief boost to the pound.
  • Daily Mail: The Financial Conduct Authority needs to do more to curb the ‘culture of mis-selling’ in branches according to Andrew Tyrie, chairman of the Treasury Select Committee.
  • The Guardian: The Financial Conduct Authority is examining possible abuse of London-based market rates on top of its investigations into Libor and foreign exchange pricing, its chief executive has told MPs.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Cuadrilla offers community benefits of up to £6,000 per household for those nearest the drilling sites, but admits it is yet to secure the right to frack beneath dozens of homes up to 5,000ft away.
  • Financial Times: Michael Kors raised its full-year sales and profit forecasts as it reported European third-quarter sales had more than doubled.
  • Daily Mail: TalkTalk is set to overtake BT for TV customers after doing a deal to show Sky Sports on a pay-per-day basis.
  • The Guardian: BT has been ordered to refund thousands of customers it overcharged for calls to its directory enquiries service, including one user who received an £81 bill for a single call.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Punch Taverns claims it would be left under a cloud of uncertainty if creditors don't approve a deal to restructure its £2.3 billion debt pile next week.
  • Daily Mail: Chip designer ARM Holdings, which counts both Apple and Samsung as major customers, saw its shares slump nearly 5% yesterday after missing profit expectations for the last three months.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Google's executive chairman Eric Schmidt handed $106 million bonus.
  • The Daily Telegraph: France 'to make €1 billion tax claim against Google'; the search engine giant has reduced the amount of tax it pays in France by funnelling most of its revenue through a Dutch-registered intermediary.
  • Financial Times: Finnish refiner Neste Oil has increased annual operating profits by 70% on the back of strong performance in its biofuels division.
  • Daily Mail: The chief executive of Ocado insisted shareholders ‘don’t want us to make a profit at the moment’ after posting a deeper than expected annual loss.
  • Financial Times: Shares in Electrocomponents lost some of their spark on Tuesday after the distributor of electronics and maintenance products reported a slowdown of sales in North America.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Trinity Mirror says better-than-expected print sales combined with a 32% surge in revenues from digital products in November and December will put profits 4% ahead of current estimates.
  • Financial Times: Rolls-Royce, the engine and turbine maker, is facing multiple criminal charges for allegedly failing to manage the risk of employees being exposed to a radioactive substance.
  • The Guardian: BP has ruled itself out of drilling for shale gas in the UK, at least for now – indicating it fears its damaged safety record from the Gulf of Mexico spill would make it a target for protesters.
  • The Guardian: Britain is struggling to stay in the "premier league" of countries ranked by the consultants PwC after suffering more grievously than rival nations in the slump of 2008-09.
  • The Guardian: Prices in Britain's shops fell at the fastest rate in more than seven years in January; shop price deflation accelerated to 1% last month from 0.8% in December, according to the British Retail Consortium/Nielsen shop price index.
  • Financial Times: Archer Daniels Midland has undertaken an aggressive effort to steady its international grain trading subsidiary after it struggled in markets from South America to Asia.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Emerging markets more vulnerable than ever to Fed tightening, warns the Bank for International Settlements; BIS says there had been a "massive expansion" in developing countries.
  • Financial Times: Italian utility Enel, one of Europe’s most indebted, said on Tuesday that it had cut net debt by €3 billion at the end of 2013 to €39.9 billion as it reported earnings rose 7.6% over 2012, boosted by the sale of its Arctic Russian assets.
  • Financial Times: Sharp declines in the value of its Egyptian gas and US shale businesses have led to full-year earnings at BG Group falling by a third.

Share tips, comment and bids

  • The Guardian: Vince Cable has expressed concerns about plans by bailed-out Lloyds Banking Group to get rid of half of its small business experts.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Sony reportedly in talks with investment fund Japan Industrial Partners to sell loss-making Vaio for £300 million.
  • The Guardian: The BBC and other broadcasters are planning to slash their investment in the YouView set-top box, leaving BT and TalkTalk as the major shareholders.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Billionaire property developer brothers Nick and Christian Candy have plans for a Dubai development three times the size of the London Shard.
  • Financial Times: Countryside Properties, which was acquired by Lloyds Banking Group at the height of the financial crisis and bought by Oaktree Capital last year, is to merge with Millgate Developments, an upmarket developer focused on the southeast of England.
  • The Guardian (Comment): Satya Nadella, Microsoft's new CEO, looks like everything his predecessors Steve Ballmer and Bill Gates were not.
  • The Guardian (Comment): In his new role as technology adviser, Bill Gates will still be crucial to Microsoft, which is floundering in the age of smartphones and tablets.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Yum: any slowing of economic growth in China will inevitably have an impact on the owner of KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell - also on the appeal of the shares.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Lenovo: deal buys Motorola’s links with US carriers, crucial to accessing that market but the reality is there are no profits in smartphones.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Microsoft is no dinosaur. Its new boss needs to get that message – and a clearer vision of the future – out to investors.

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