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Wednesday Papers: US considers sanctions on Russian banks

Wednesday Papers: US considers sanctions on Russian banks

Top stories

  • Financial Times: The Obama administration is considering placing Iran-style banking sanctions on selected Russian financial institutions if Moscow were to send troops into eastern Ukraine.
  • Financial Times: Church of England is ramping up the exposure of its £6 billion endowment to alternative investments such as hedge funds and private equity making it one of the UK’s largest single investors in these types of assets.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Russia cancels Ukraine's gas discount and demands $1.5 billion.
  • The Guardian: One of the architects of the EU's cap on bankers' bonuses called on European commission to take UK to court for allowing banks to 'blatantly' sidestep EU rules limiting bonuses.
  • The Guardian: Deflation hits 1.4% in February while food price inflation also at a seven-year low in UK.

Business and economics

  • Financial Times: Britain is leading a fightback against “extraterritorial” EU pay curbs on fund managers based in the US or Asia, which had been agreed in reforms to the European investment industry.
  • Financial Times: BP is creating a new business to manage its US onshore oil and gas assets to compete with the smaller independent American shale gas companies.
  • Financial Times: The prospect of Britain leaving the European Union is harmful to UK companies and is already being used by competitors against them, a leading manufacturer, GKN, warned on Tuesday.
  • Financial Times: Britain’s biggest companies have accused the government of pushing for secrecy in public sector contracts.
  • Financial Times: Head of Financial Conduct Authority has warned finance chiefs not to let ethical standards deteriorate as their companies attempt to cash in on Britain’s economic recovery.
  • Financial Times: The Bank of England governor has said the first of two reviews to toughen UK bonus rules will start this month.
  • Financial Times: Draghi seeks to revive reviled loan bundles to boost credit.
  • Financial Times: The Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating the way banks hand out allocations of debt in sought-after offerings to investors.
  • Financial Times: BHP chief warns reliance on shale gas would be a “very expensive” solution to meeting the world’s growing demand for energy.
  • Financial Times: Apple is to appoint its first new financial chief in 10 years, as newcomer Luca Maestri is promoted to replace Peter Oppenheimer.
  • Financial Times: Pescanova is closing in on a last-minute deal with its creditor banks that will ensure the survival of the financially stricken frozen fish group.
  • Financial Times: John Chen, BlackBerry’s chief executive, said there was a “50:50 chance” that his strategy for turning round the lossmaking Canadian smartphone maker would fail, but that he remained optimistic.
  • Financial Times: Two of the biggest shareholders in Bank of Ireland sold a third of their combined stake on Tuesday after nearly trebling the value of the holding they acquired from the Irish government at the height of the country’s financial crisis.
  • Financial Times: Shanghai Chaori Solar Energy Science & Technology, a Chinese maker of solar cells, announced on Tuesday that it would not be able to pay the Rmb89.8 million ($14.6 million) annual interest on a Rmb1 billion bond that it issued two years ago.
  • Financial Times: The administrators of Lehman Brothers’ main UK subsidiary expect to be left with a surplus of about £5 billion to distribute after fully repaying all unsecured creditors in the failed investment bank more than five years after its collapse.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Scottish independence: dwindling North Sea oil revenues mean country faces tougher challenge to balance books.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Gains from trading bitcoins on online exchanges, purchases made with bitcoins and companies earning revenue from bitcoin transactions will be subjected to Japanese tax.
  • The Independent: RBS and Nationwide cut loans to small firms despite state aid.
  • The Guardian: A federal judge on Tuesday blocked US courts from being used to collect a $9 billion Ecuadorean judgment against Chevron for rainforest damage, saying lawyers poisoned an honorable quest with their illegal and wrongful conduct.
  • The Guardian: UK construction sector reports mixed data after February flooding.
  • The Guardian: Bitcoin bank Flexcoin closes after hack attack admiting that it does not have resources to cover loss of 896 bitcoin worth £365,000 stolen in raid.
  • Daily Mail: Saving rates have dropped by 50% in the five years since the Bank of England cut the base rate to 0.5%.

Share tips, comment and bids

  • Financial Times: Glencore on Tuesday said it was in talks to convert $900 million of debt into an equity stake in Russneft, a Russian oil producer.
  • Financial Times: Premier Foods has completed a deal of £1.1 billion refinancing package to its slash debt and restore what was once the UK’s biggest food group into a viable business.
  • Financial Times: Serco revealed a 62% drop in profits on Tuesday.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Boohoo.com sets flotation price at 50p each, valuing the online shopping company at more than £500 million.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Standard Chartered will on Wednesday give more details on a series of asset disposal.
  • Financial Times: Brit Insurance to relist with £1 billion flotation.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Glencore Xstrata: striking the right balance between trading and mining.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Insurance failures: enough cover? Insurers are next on regulators’ watch list.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Oil prices: spending plans are still rising, even if revenues are not.
  • Financial Times (Lex): Fast Retailing: Uniqlo parent needs more than deals to become world’s number one retailer.

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