CALLS FOR QE TO STAVE OFF EURO DEFLATION
A top European Central Bank policymaker has called for “quantitative easing” to be used to boost the eurozone economy if deflation risks emerge across the region. The comments by Lorenzo Bini Smaghi, ECB executive board member, are the strongest indication yet that the central bank would expand its policy tools to prevent an economic slump in continental Europe.
THOMSON REUTERS SUSPENDS ITS HEALTHCARE ARM SALE
Thomson Reuters has suspended the auction of its healthcare business, capping a tumultuous year for the firm. The end of the six-month process came three weeks after the news that Tom Glocer would hand over as chief executive to Jim Smith on January 1.
VW GIVES BLACKBERRY-WIELDING WORKERS A SILENT NIGHT
Angered by the blurring of the dividing line between the workplace and home, Volkswagen’s powerful works council has struck an agreement with management that employees who use a BlackBerry and whose pay is governed by a collective wage tariff agreements will be subject to new email restrictions.
RWE ABANDONS TIE-UP WITH GAZPROM
RWE has aborted attempts to lure Gazprom of Russia in a joint venture that was to take over the German utility’s gas- and oil-fired power plants in Germany, UK, and the Netherlands and possibly build new ones.
INJURED SEYMOUR GETS UP, DUSTS ITSELF DOWN AND LOOKS FOR A SUITOR
The dust had barely settled on the record fine slapped on it by the Stock Exchange before Seymour Pierce was tapping up potential buyers. In an attempt to keep the sale process under wraps, the broker has sent non-disclosure agreements to those it thinks might be interested.
JOBSEEKERS DESCEND ON GERMANY
Germany has seen a huge rise in jobseekers from Greece and Spain, who have fled long unemployment queues to try to find work. While many rage against German austerity demands, ordinary people are taking advantage of the EU’s free movement of labour rules to try to find jobs.
The Daily Telegraph
REVAMP AFTER BARCLAYS LOSES OUT ON COPPER AND ALUMINIUM
Barclays has lost tens of millions of dollars on bets on copper and aluminium prices that went the wrong way, triggering a restructuring of its lucrative base metals business. Two senior traders in the metals trading arm, part of Barclays Capital, have been “reshuffled” in the wake of the losses.
BLACKS ON VERGE OF BEING ACQUIRED IN PRE-PACK DEAL
Victims of the high street slump, HMV, Thorntons and La Senza all sounded alarms this week. Now The Daily Telegraph understands that as early as Friday KPMG could announce the sale of Blacks Leisure through a pre-pack administration deal.
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
SANTANDER UNPOPULAR AT HOME
As Banco Santander scrambles to raise funds by shedding assets abroad, it faces a backlash at home from angry customers saddled with some €4bn of paper losses on risky bonds the bank sold four years ago to fund a landmark takeover.
NEWS CORP IN TALKS TO HIRE GERSON ZWEIFACH AS GENERAL COUNSEL
News Corp is expected to name veteran Washington attorney Gerson Zweifach as its next general counsel, filling what is likely to be a sensitive role as the media conglomerate deals with the fallout of the phone-hacking scandal that erupted this summer. A deal hasn’t been completed and talks could still fall apart.