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

More news

28 Apr S&P reaffirms AA rating on UK, outlook clouded by Brexit

Standard&Poor's reaffirmed its rating on the United Kingdom's long-term sovereign debt but warned of the potential impact on the economy from the uncertainty around the Brexit negotiations and their eventual outcome.

28 Apr FX round-up: Sterling nonchalant after UK Q1 growth disappoints

Sterling made steady gains on most key cross on Friday, appearing nonchalant in its reaction to disappointing UK economic growth data out mid-morning.

28 Apr Europe close: Weak US, UK GDP weigh on shareson the continent

European stocks ended the day on a mixed note after weak readings on UK and US GDP dragged many indices into the red at the end of the month.

28 Apr Laird off to solid start, but second half remains key

Electronic component maker Laird reported strong sales growth in the first quarter of 2017 after a difficult year.

28 Apr General Motors truck and SUV sales drive record earnings

Growth at General Motors accelerated past analyst forecasts with a record first-quarter set of earnings.

28 Apr RBS and Lloyds Bank customers hit by online glitch on payday

Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds Banking Group customers were prevented from accessing money in their accounts due to a technical glitch ahead of the bank holiday weekend.

28 Apr Kennedy Wilson confirms quarterly dividend, new office leases

Kennedy Wilson Europe Real Estate announced it will pay an interim quarterly dividend of 12.0p per share, while also reporting strong leasing momentum across key investments in Greater London and Dublin.

28 Apr Time spins backwards on decision not to sell business

Time Inc stock reversed recent gains after the board decided not to sell the publishing business as it was being "reinvigorated" under a new strategy.

28 Apr Morgan Stanley downgrades Berendsen on competition concerns

Berendsen not only needs to invest in property, plant and equipment but is facing increasing competition in the UK, warned Morgan Stanley as it downgraded the stock on Friday.

28 Apr UK mortgages and consumer credit card borrowing both decline - BBA

Mortgage approvals and consumer credit card lending both fell in March according to fresh data from the banking industry, providing the reason for the fall in house prices announced elsewhere on Friday.