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WHAT THE OTHER PAPERS SAY THIS MORNING

FINANCIAL TIMES

HGCAPITAL SAYS GOLDSHIELD UNDERSTATED PROFITS FOR YEARS
Goldshield Group understated its profits by several million pounds over a number of years, according HgCapital, the private equity group that backed a £179m management buy-out of the drugmaker last year.

HEDGE FUNDS RAISE BETS AGAINST EURO
Hedge funds are raising their bets against the euro amid growing fears of a regulatory backlash against their trading positions on the specific sovereign debt of Greece and other weak eurozone economies. Many of the world’s biggest hedge funds have become increasingly concerned about fierce criticism by European politicians that their country bets have heightened the crisis of confidence in some markets. Lord Turner, the chairman of the Financial Services Authority, the UK market regulator, on Tuesday became the latest heavyweight figure to add his support to an investigation into speculative positions in financial instruments that gain from a fall in prices of sovereign and corporate debt.

SAP VOWS RETURN TO DOUBLE-DIGIT SALES GROWTH
Bill McDermott and Jim Hagemann Snabe, SAP’s new co-chief executives, promised on Tuesday that there would be a new culture of “fun” and “trust” at the embattled German software company. In their first public appearance after last month’s surprise announcement of their appointments, Mr McDermott and Mr Snabe pledged to return the German software company to double-digit sales growth by 2012 and to restructure the company to make it more innovative and entrepreneurial. SAP’s core software sales fell 16 per cent during the downturn.

THE TIMES

FEARS OVER POTENTIAL TOYOTA PROBLEMS SURFACED IN 2006, US SENATE TOLD
Further evidence that Toyota knew about safety problems and a decline in the overall quality of its vehicles was produced today at a US Senate hearing into the company’s recall of cars. Senators attending the hearing, the third by US lawmakers in a week, were shown an internal company document from January 2008 warning that Toyota’s vehicles were becoming “less defensible” as a result of “quality issues” that were “showing up in defect investigations”, including “rear gas struts, ball joints, etc”.

DON’T BE CONFUSED, COST OF INSURANCE IS GOING UP
You may be a safe driver, have no points on your licence and have never had an accident, but the chances are your car insurance still went up.


The Daily Telegraph

BRITAIN'S HOUSING MARKET 'ONE OF FASTEST IMPROVING' IN EUROPE
House prices rose in only five European countries, including Britain, during 2009, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. But other countries continued to suffer a sharp market correction, with prices diving by up to 53 per cent. RICS warned that countries with vulnerable economies would continue to suffer from price falls and depressed markets during 2010.

GREEK SINGER NANA MOUSKOURI OFFERS HER PENSION TO HELP END DEBT CRISIS
Greece's crippling economic crisis has prompted its best-known singer, Nana Mouskouri, to offer the country her pension in a bid to tackle its massive debt. Mouskouri draws a pension of around £14,700 from Brussels each year.

WALL STREET JOURNAL

AIRLINES FIGHT EU RULE ON PASSENGER DELAYS
European airlines are battling against consumer advocates over recent changes to the European Union's air-passenger protection rules that carriers say could cost them up to €5bn ($6.8bn) annually, deepen their losses and force up ticket prices. The change stems from a November ruling by a top EU court, which was applied for the first time last month by authorities in Germany and Spain.

FASTWEB FOUNDER DENIES ROLE IN FRAUD
Italian billionaire and Fastweb founder Silvio Scaglia told a judge on Tuesday he is “absolutely extraneous to any illicit activity”, as he faced questioning on allegations of involvement in a wide-ranging tax fraud and money-laundering scheme, according Mr. Scaglia’s lawyers.