Wednesday newspaper round-up: RBS, RWE, Next, Greece

Michele Maatouk Sharecast | 19 Apr, 2017 07:27 | | |

noticias

Philip Hammond has signalled that the government is facing a multibillion-pound loss from selling off its 73% stake in Royal Bank of Scotland. The chancellor told MPs that that “we have to live in the real world”, as he indicated that the remaining shares could be sold below the 502p average price that was paid for them during 2008 and 2009 when £45bn of taxpayers’ money was pumped into the Edinburgh-based bank. – Guardian

The City regulator has pledged to ensure that financial firms remain strong in the face of Brexit in its annual list of priorities, which also includes protecting vulnerable customers from overly expensive loans. Andrew Bailey, chief executive of the Financial Conduct Authority, said the regulator’s lawyers were scrutinising EU financial sector rules as part of the government’s “great repeal bill”, which will transfer thousands of EU regulations into UK legislation after Brexit. - Guardian

The boss of German energy giant RWE has fuelled expectations that the company will target the UK energy market for future acquisitions. Rolf Martin Schmitz disclosed that the group is interested in owning power plants in countries where capacity margins are thin and the Government is willing to award contracts to secure power supplies. – Telegraph

City grandees and currency investors alike backed Theresa May’s decision to call an early election in the hope she will win more authority to negotiate a smooth exit from the European Union. Although the surprise in Westminster at the Prime Minister’s previous refusal to go to the polls early was echoed in the Square Mile, news of a general election on June 8 was broadly seen as an opportunity to achieve greater certainty in talks with Brussels. – Telegraph

Lord Wolfson of Aspley Guise has had his total remuneration slashed from £4.2 million to £1.8 million after a tough year in which Next’s full-year profits fell for the first time since the recession. The Next chief executive’s pay dropped heavily as he did not receive a bonus — £530,000 the year before — after failing to hit targets. It is the first time in 18 years that he has missed his annual bonus. – The Times

The International Monetary Fund will walk away from Greece if it decides that Europe’s bailout deal leaves the country’s debts unsustainably high, Christine Lagarde has warned. Greece will be high on the agenda of the IMF’s spring meetings, which start in Washington on Friday. Athens is running out of time to secure a new loan under its €86 billion rescue programme, the third since 2010. The latest tranche of its bailout needs to be released in time to meet debt repayments due in July. Without new money, the country could run out of cash and default, triggering a re-run of the 2015 crisis. Until the IMF decrees that Greece’s debts are on a sustainable path, it has refused to put any more money at risk. – The Times

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