EU TO PUSH QUOTA FOR WOMEN DIRECTORS
The EU’s executive is to press ahead with plans for quotas to increase the proportion of women on corporate boards, triggering a protracted fight between Brussels and national governments. Viviane Reding, justice commissioner, will announce the first step towards European-level legislation, a year after she threatened mandatory measures if no progress was made on improving gender balance at the higher echelons of business.
WELLS FARGO PLANS GLOBAL EXPANSION DRIVE
Wells Fargo, the US’s largest bank by market value, has drawn up plans to build up its international operations. The group wants to expand into 20 markets around the world.
GAS GROUPS TAP DERIVATIVES DEALS FOR CASH
US oil and gas producers are making complex structured derivatives deals with investment banks to bring forward revenue by unlocking the value of their long-term hedging contracts.
AUDIT COMMISSION CONTRACTS DELIVER SNUB TO BIG FOUR
The dismantling and privatisation of the Audit Commission began in earnest yesterday with the second-line accounting firm Grant Thornton pipping the Big Four to clinch the biggest single chunk of outsourced business. Grant Thornton was awarded council audit contracts worth £41.3m a year, ahead of the £23.1m and £20m deals respectively given to its larger rivals KPMG and Ernst & Young.
The Daily Telegraph
ADVERTS FOR CHEAP ALCOHOL COULD BE BANNED
Supermarkets could be banned from advertising cheap alcohol under coalition plans. The ban, which would form part of the coalition’s alcohol strategy, would see an end to retailers such as Tesco and Asda advertising money-off deals on beer, wine and spirits. Promotional deals by supermarkets such as “3 bottles of wine for £10” or half-price lager have been seen as contributory factors to the increase in binge drinking in the UK.
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
EUROPE BANKS TAP ECB TO PROP UP AILING BANKS
Some large European banks are using cheap loans from the ECB to insulate themselves from new problems that could flare up in their businesses in financially ailing European countries. Banks including Barclays, Lloyds Banking Group, Crédit Agricole and KBC Group have borrowed billions of euros under the ECB's three-year-loan programme through their subsidiaries in Spain, Portugal, Greece and Ireland.