What the other papers say this morning - 25 October 2013

FINANCIAL TIMES

Bitcoin backed by top hedgie boss
Financial advisers who gathered in New York to hear leaders of the asset management industry impart their best investment ideas for the year ahead were given a surprising tip by one prominent hedge fund manager: Bitcoin. Fortress Investment Group’s Michael Novogratz said it could be used as a cheaper way of transferring money in countries with weak banking systems.

Tesla: market cap is supercharged
Electric car manufacturer Tesla has a higher market capitalisation than it “deserves”, its chief executive said. Tesla, which expects to sell just 21,000 cars this year, is worth about $22bn, roughly half the value of Ford and a third of the value of General Motors, which sold more than 9m vehicles last year. Its stock price has risen about 400 per cent so far in 2013.

Grangemouth future uncertain
The future of the Grangemouth refinery and petrochemical plant was hanging in the balance last night despite the Unite union accepting demands for a pay freeze and changes in working conditions. Len McCluskey, Unite general secretary, said after talks with management that the union had accepted “warts and all” the Ineos demands in an attempt to save Scotland’s most important industrial complex from closure. The climbdown came less than a day after Ineos said it would shut the petrochemical plant .

THE TIMES

Royal London drops Scottish links
Royal London, Britain’s biggest mutually owned life and pensions provider, said yesterday that the trading names of Scottish Life, Bright Grey and Scottish Provident would disappear over the next two years.

Ultra-rich invited to billionaire’s row
The Saudi Arabian Royal Family is believed to have sold ten houses on The Bishops Avenue to LJ Capital for about £80m. The tree-lined avenue, dubbed “Billionaire’s Row”, is home to Saudi princes, members of the Brunei Royal Family and, for a time, the fugitive Kazakhstani businessman Mukhta Ablyazov.

The Daily Telegraph

Housing minister cites ageing UK
The planning minister singled out the rise of four-generation families for an “intense” housing crisis, saying a rapidly-ageing population was putting greater pressure on the housing market than mass immigration. “Our population has grown and we have not built enough houses to keep pace with it,” Nick Boles told MPs.

Charles regards king role as prison
The Prince of Wales is in no hurry to become king because he regards the role of monarch as a form of “prison”, according to staff who spoke to Time editor-at-large Catherine Mayer.

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

Merkel spy claims spread distrust of US
Outrage over apparent US spying on German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s personal cellphone spread across Europe yesterday, threatening to complicate an array of America’s trans-Atlantic interests.Merkel said trust had broken down between the US and Germany.

Rome is the hub of Alitalia’s woes
Alitalia is scrambling to survive by trying to coax more cash out of Air France-KLM. But new capital from its industry partner wouldn't solve one of the unprofitable Italian carrier’s biggest problems: the lack of a viable hub. Yet it is stuck with its main base at Rome’s undersized Fiumicino airport.