EU PLANS RAISE HOME FORECLOSURE RISK
UK homeowners could face higher mortgage costs and find themselves at greater risk of foreclosure as early as next year because of an obscure clause in the bank capital directive being worked on by the European parliament.
US FUNDS RETURN TO EUROPEAN BANK PAPER
US money market funds have begun moving back into European bank paper, a sign that central bank efforts to backstop key institutions are improving risk appetite. This past week, the funds were buyers in increased issuance of French and Spanish banks’ commercial paper, according to bankers. Notes issued by US banks with foreign parents rose $6bn to $152bn and foreign domiciled bank notes outstanding rose nearly $3bn to $133bn, according to figures from the Federal Reserve.
THOMAS COOK BOOKINGS DOWN BY A THIRD
Thomas Cook, the troubled UK travel operator, is reeling from a slump of as much as a third in summer package holiday bookings during the first half of January, which threatens to create new cash flow problems on the company. The leisure industry monitor shared by tour operators to track bookings shows that the industry as a whole suffered a 15 per cent decline in bookings in the two weeks to January 13, compared to the equivalent weeks in 2011.
TESCO THROWS IN THE TOWEL TO FOCUS ON WHAT IT DOES BEST
Tesco is poised to walk away from its standalone furnishing stores because of weak sales at the warehouse-style outlets in retail parks. Britain’s biggest grocer, whose share price plunged by 16 per cent two weeks ago after revealing disappointing Christmas trading, is thought to be keen to exit from leases its holds on all 13 of its Home Plus stores.
RACE ON FOR AZZURRI, EVEN BEFORE STARTING GUN FIRES
A bidding war is set to break out for Azzurri, a pioneer in alternative telecoms, as some of the industry’s most acquisitive businesses start to circle the company. Daisy and Alternative Networks will lead the charge.
The Daily Telegraph
SECRET JOBLESS COULD MASK EXTENT OF UNEMPLOYMENT
Jobcentre officials have moved hundreds of thousands of unemployed people claiming jobless benefits on to a separate “training allowance” over the past year, raising concerns the Government is “massaging” figures to mask the true extent of unemployment.
AIRLINE COST BLOW FOR BORIS ISLAND
The enormous cost of building a new airport in the Thames estuary will mean airlines paying seven times as much for landing fees compared with the present costs at Heathrow, an industry analysis has revealed. Experts say the cost of landing could rise to £100 per passenger.
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
VW CONSIDERS SPEEDING UP PORSCHE INTEGRATION, PEOPLE SAY
Volkswagen AG is considering taking over the remaining 50.1 per cent stake it doesn’t already own in Porsche Automobil Holding SE’s core sports-car unit ahead of time slots defined in the initial merger agreement to speed up integration into its stable of brands and reap more cost synergies, three people familiar with the situation said.
E-BOOK PRICES GET SLASHED
The book world is discovering the 99-cent special. Nearly two years after book publishers forced a sharp increase in the price of newly released e-books, a new low-price trend is emerging, with 99-cent temporary prices on e-books.