WHAT THE OTHER PAPERS SAY THIS MORNING

FINANCIAL TIMES

PIMCO WINS MORE FREEDOM
Pimco, the US asset manager, is being given more autonomy as part of a restructuring by its owner Allianz, the German insurer. Pimco has been one of Allianz’s most successful investments since it was acquired in 2000 and has been given a largely free rein to set its own course.

OSBORNE URGED TO DROP 50P TAX
George Osborne should drop the 50p top rate of income tax “at the earliest opportunity” to boost growth, according to 20 high-profile economists.

Britain will only enjoy long-term growth if it has an internationally competitive tax regime, the group say in a letter.

THE TIMES

TCHENGUIZ HIRES WIKI BARRISTER
Embattled property tycoon Vincent Tchenguiz has hired Ben Emmerson, QC, the barrister representing the Wikileaks founder Julian Assange to launch a fresh attack against the Serious Fraud Office, claiming that it breached his human rights.

DISPUTE WON’T HALT HOTELS SALE
Two London hotel developments have been put up for sale for more than £200m after a legal dispute between the partners behind the projects. The sale of the luxury InterContinental in Westminster and a Hilton in Southwark follows a ruling over a spat between Shiraz Boghani and Bashir Nathoo.

The Daily Telegraph

CONSUMER DEBT WILL HIT RETAILERS
British consumers are burdened with too much debt, high levels of inflation and rising borrowing costs – a toxic combination, which will hit nearly all retailers’ profits, according to a gloomy summary of the sector by Citigroup, the brokers.

OIL INDUSTRY WARNS MINISTERS
North Sea oil bosses have told the Government that uncertainty over who will pay the £30bn bill for dismantling old platforms is even more harmful to investment than the Chancellor’s tax grab on energy companies. BG Group, BP, Total, Shell and TAQA Bratani have asked ministers for clarity on paying for the work.