<strong>FINANCIAL TIMES<br /><br />GARTMORE ON BRINK OF £500M IPO<br /></strong>Gartmore, the fund management group equally owned by management and private equity group Hellman & Friedman, aims to register flotation plans with the UK’s Financial Services Authority as early as next week. The group has appointed Morgan Stanley and Citigroup to advise it on completing an initial public offer by the end of the year.<br /><br /><strong>STOBART PREPARES FOR RECOVERY AFTER DIVIDEND CUT</strong><br />Rising freight levels helped Stobart report a modest increase in first-half profits, but the haulier cut its interim dividend by 26 per cent. In the six months to 31 August, pre-tax profits at the freight company, whose colourful Eddie Stobart trucks have become an I-spy favourite among Britain’s road users, edged up from £11m to £11.1m. Earnings per share increased to 3.5p, compared with losses of 9.49p last time. <br /><br /><strong>SMITHS NEWS SEEKS TO DIVERSIFY</strong><br />Smiths News is considering distributing products other than newspapers, magazines and books in an effort to minimise the fallout from any long-term demise of printed titles.Weak newspaper and magazine sales – down 2.8 per cent and 7.6 per cent respectively on a like-for-like basis – hurt underlying profits, which fell from £32.5m to £30.5m in the year to 31 August.<br /><br /><strong>RUSSIA RESOLVES $22.5BN BNY SUIT</strong><br />Russia dropped a $22.5bn lawsuit against the Bank of New York Mellon on Thursday after agreeing an out-of-court settlement with the company in a case related to a decade-old money laundering scandal. A judge in Moscow’s arbitration court said Russia’s federal customs service, the plaintiff, had ordered the case to be closed, Interfax reported.<br /><br /><strong>THE TIMES<br /><br />BLOW FOR SARKOZY AS SON FORCED OUT OF TOP JOB<br /></strong>President Sarkozy was humiliated last night when his 23-year old son announced that he was withdrawing from the race to become the head of a £100m a-year public agency amid allegations of nepotism. He will still stand for election to the board of Epad, the development corporation of La Défense.<br /><strong><br />SUPPLIERS FEEL THE PAIN AS MARKS & SPENCER CUTS BACK<br /></strong>Sir Stuart has been locked in a battle to revive the fortunes of M&S since he was appointed in 2004. Critics say that the suppliers have taken much of the pain. The first step was to cut the number of suppliers and to simplify the retailer’s labyrinthine supply chain. The second step was to ask the remaining manufacturers for a “margin contribution”.<br /><br /><strong>The Daily Telegraph<br /><br />BARACK OBAMA SEES WORST POLL RATING DROP IN 50 YEARS</strong><br />The decline in Barack Obama’s popularity since July has been the steepest of any president at the same stage of his first term for more than 50 years.<br /><br />Gallup recorded an average daily approval rating of 53 per cent for Mr Obama for the third quarter of the year, a sharp drop from the 62 per cent he recorded from April.<br /><br /><strong>DESIGNER HOMEWARE CHAIN DWELL EYES HABITAT</strong><br />Dwell, the 12-store designer homewares chain, is considering buying Habitat, its larger rival that has been put up for sale by Swedish owner Ikea.<br /><br />Aamir Ahmad, Dwell’s managing director, said that the plans to grow Dwell to up to 45 stores in five years and is “looking at all the options on the table”, including Habitat. Ikea has appointed Lazard to look at its options.<br /><br /><strong>WALL STREET JOURNAL<br /><br />FORTUNE MAGAZINE CUTS BACK NUMBER OF ISSUES</strong><br />Capping a tumultuous year for business magazines, Fortune is planning to publish about one-quarter fewer issues annually and make other changes, joining the ranks of publications scrambling to reinvent themselves in the advertising downturn. Fortune’s new publishing schedule is part of a remodeling at the magazine that is expected to result in staff cuts.<br /><br /><strong>CATERPILLAR TAPS AN INSIDER AS ITS NEW CHIEF EXECUTIVE</strong><br />Caterpillar said yesterday that Douglas Oberhelman, president of its engine and services business, will succeed chairman and chief executive James Owens next year. The group has been eyeing a successor for the top job since last year . Owens, 63, is nearing the firm’s age limit for chief executives.