MOD FACES FRESH CRISIS OVER ITS FUNDING
Senior figures in the Ministry of Defence are warning of a possible reopening of last October’s Strategic Defence and Security Review because the MoD lacks the funds needed to provide the military capability demanded by the government for 2020. The department has discovered that it needs to find at least £1bn a year of additional cuts if they are to meet the Treasury’s targets.
PENSION CORP'S MOVE SET TO FREE CAPITAL
Pension Corporation has offloaded £500m worth of risks attached to pensioners living longer than expected as it looks to free capital so it can compete for new business. The company, one of a handful of businesses set up to take on UK defined benefit schemes from company pension funds, has been trying to raise up to £600m in fresh capital since 2009.
TWO FOUND GUILTY IN TOREX FRAUD CASE
Two former Torex Retail executives have been convicted of defrauding the shareholders of the former AIM-quoted group. Edwin Dayan and Christopher Ford were directors ar the retail company’s subsidiary XN Checkout and caused more than £1.65m in ficticious profits to be recognised in the firm’s accounts.
CITY ANALYST CALLS FOR TESCO TO START PRICE WAR
A leading City analyst has called for the incoming chief executive of Tesco to embark on a massive UK price war, to cripple the competition and stop Tesco’s rivals opening a swathe of new stores. Dave McCarthy, analyst at Evolution Securities, said Tesco should “reposition on UK pricing” under Philip Clarke, who becomes group chief executive in February.
FRIENDS IN NEED: MUSIC CHIEFS LINE UP TO HAIL UNIQUE HMV
The music industry has come out fighting for HMV after supply fears sent the company’s shares to a new low. Seven leading executives, including the heads of the four largest record labels, have written to The Times pledging to support HMV through its recent difficulties and praising its contribution to the music industry.
WIND POWER BRINGS NEW JOBS TO HUMBERSIDE
Hull’s prospects of becoming the centre of Britain’s wind energy industry will move a step closer today with an announcement from Siemens that it plans to build an £80m wind turbine factory in the city. Up to 700 jobs will be created as part of the German manufacturer’s choice for its new plant to make offshore turbines.
The Daily Telegraph
US TRADER HETCO DRIVES UP OIL PRICE
An American trading group reportedly building up a huge physical position in North Sea oil has driven London Brent prices above $98 a barrel. Hetco, which is part-owned by US oil and gas group Hess Corp, was said to have taken control of eight North Sea Forties oil shipments and two Brent cargoes – and it is believed to be in the market for more.
SENIOR GOLDMAN SACHS WORKER LEAVES AFTER INTERNAL BREACH
One of Goldman Sachs’ most senior London-based staff has left the bank just days before the firm is due to pay out billions of pounds in staff bonuses. Kevin Connors, co-head of global foreign exchange sales for G10 currencies, left the bank last week for allegedly breaking unspecified internal rules.
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
NOKIA CANCELS US LAUNCH OF X7 PHONE
In another setback for Nokia Corp, the Finnish mobile-phone giant has canceled the US release of a smartphone that was slated to launch exclusively this year with AT&T, people familiar with the situation said. Nokia had intended to debut the touchscreen phone, dubbed the X7, in conjunction with AT&T ahead of the Mobile World Congress trade conference next month.
ALFA SEEKS TO CALM VIMPELCOM SPAT
The chief executive of Russian conglomerate Alfa attempted yesterday to calm tensions that have flared between it and Telenor, a rival shareholder in VimpelCom, over a revised deal to merge the Russian mobile operator with the telecom assets of an Egyptian billionaire.