Silicon Valley lobby group criticised
Silicon Valley’s latest attempt to form a lobbying group has been attacked by rivals in the tech sector as an interference in politics that risks attracting negative publicity. The new organisation marks the first major political action group to emerge from the tech industry. Starting out with what insiders estimate will be $20m-$25m in seed money from Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, it is set to become Silicon Valley’s richest lobby group, with a total fundraising target of $50m.
Demand for junk bonds resumes
A dearth of attractive investment options has pushed global investors back into the US junk market, sending yields lower and enabling borrowers with weak credit histories to raise funds at the lowest rates on record.
Euro states set to disclose tax details
Austria and Luxembourg are preparing to ease longstanding and controversial bank secrecy rules, allowing other EU member states access to their depositors’ account details amid mounting pressure to crack down on tax evasion in Europe.
Ping An to buy Lloyd’s building
The Lloyd’s of London building, one of the City’s architectural masterpieces, is to be sold to the Chinese life insurance company Ping An for about £260m. It will be the first London investment by a Chinese life insurance group.
Soros backs Eurobond plan
George Soros last night urged Eurozone countries to issue joint debt bonds with or without Germany to save the European Union.
The Daily Telegraph
M&S chief safe for a year
One of Marks and Spencer’s largest shareholders has said Marc Bolland’s job is safe for at least a year despite the retailer’s expected poor performance in the fourth quarter.
Bitcoin passes $200 for first time
Bitcoin, the controversial electronic currency, has passed the $200-mark for the first time, setting new records despite talk of a bubble as investors flock to the virtual currency.
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
Penney backfires on Ackman
JC Penney’s decision to oust chief executive Ron Johnson is a blow to hedge-fund manager William Ackman, who set out to change the retailing world by revamping the US fashion chain.
€500 bank note should be killed
An analyst is arguing that the ECB should exterminate the €500 note to weaken the euro, provide an economic boost, and allow the ECB to pull a fast one on gangsters.