WARNING AS BRIBERY LAW DELAYED
British companies have been warned that they could be put on an export “blacklist” by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development if the government continues to delay tough new anti-corruption laws. The warning came after Ken Clarke, the justice secretary, signalled on Monday that the implementation of the Bribery Act had been pushed back because of intense business lobbying.
KCA DEUTAG SALE COULD BE SHELVED
A sale of KCA Deutag is expected to be shelved as its owners have secured the backing of a key group of lenders for a plan to recapitalise the Aberdeen-based oil services group. A group of lenders holding about 50 per cent of the company’s senior ranking loans, including Royal Bank of Scotland, HSBC and Lloyds Banking Group, have agreed to support a restructuring proposed by Pamplona Capital Management, the Russian-backed private equity firm that owns the group, according to people close to talks.
CASH MOUNTAIN FOR BHP INVESTORS
Iron, coal, copper and oil form the bedrock of BHP Billiton’s value and are the reason that the Anglo-Australian miner is now the fifth-largest company in the world, surpassing General Electric by market value.
HIGH SPIRITS LIFT CHINESE LIQUOR
Spirits are running high before this week’s Chinese New Year holiday as prices of a popular grain liquor soar. Moutai, the fiery official liquor for state banquets since the Communist revolution, has been variously described by foreign dignitaries as “liquid razor blades” and “smelling like a barnyard and tasting like turpentine”.
PARISIAN FASHION LURE FOR M&S
Marks & Spencer is close to returning to Paris, a decade after it closed its European stores. The retailer endured a storm of criticism from French workers when Luc Vandevelde, its chairman at the time, announced the closure of its stores on the Continent, including its flagship on Paris’s Boulevard Haussmann.
DUTCH APPROACH TO PENSION PROBLEM
An investigation into private sector pensions is to look at whether a continental-style approach could produce higher retirement incomes in Britain. Lord McFall, the former chairman of the Treasury Select Committee, will head an independent commission set up by the National Association of Pension Funds to examine why the system fails so many workers.
The Daily Telegraph
GSK SETTLES AVANDIA LAWSUIT
Drug maker GlaxoSmithKline has agreed to settle a US lawsuit over its disputed diabetes drug Avandia on the eve of the case going to court. The company said it had resolved the suit brought in Philadelphia by the family of Avandia-user James Burford, who died in 2006. Glaxo declined to give details of the settlement.
USA TODAY HAILS IPAD TO FIGHT DROP
America's biggest newspaper publisher hailed the iPad as a 'real positive' for its flagship newspaper, USA Today, as it fights to counter a drop in the paper's circulation. Publishing group Gannett, which is also the largest owner of local newspapers in the US, has radically restructured USA Today as it cuts costs and tries to dedicate more resource to the production and distribution of news digitally.
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
EU TACKLES STOLEN CARBON CREDITS
About €7.5 million in carbon dioxide emissions allowances stolen in a hacking attack in Austria are being returned to an Austrian national emissions registry from foreign accounts, the state prosecutor's office said Monday. The imminent retrieval of 488,141 emissions certificates from Liechtenstein and Sweden comes as leading energy traders Monday urged registries to reopen quickly following a series of thefts under the EU's Emissions Trading System that have led the EU to shut the spot market until security is improved.
THE DOW’S ROCKIN’ NEW YEAR
Blue-chip stocks kicked off the new year with their strongest January in 14 years, as a boom in corporate revenues and robust economic readings gave investors confidence that the US economy has turned a corner.