Call for cleaner succession strategies
Companies must improve their succession planning and make sure they have strong candidates ready to take the helm as chief executive, or risk undermining shareholder value and damaging market performance. The Association of British Insurers (ABI), which represents some of the UK’s biggest investors, gave the warning as it fears company returns and growth are at risk because of the failure to line up able successors as chief executives. But the ABI did not single out any specific firms with criticism.
Saudia Arabia cuts oil output
Saudi Arabia has cut oil output to its lowest level for a year as a combination of surging US crude production and weakening economic growth has sapped demand. The sharp fall in Saudi production, details of which were published ahead of a meeting in Vienna of the Opec oil cartel, contrasts with surging US energy output as hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” have unlocked large quantities of shale oil and gas. US oil production rose by 760,000 barrels a day this year – the largest increase in annual output since crude oil started to be pumped commercially in the US in 1859.
Talk is over and the race is on for 4G
Telecoms companies have lodged bids with Ofcom to acquire the new frequencies needed to offer 4G services.
Labour says cuts may hit Tory votes
George Osborne’s decision to cut benefits in real terms could cost the Conservatives dozens of seats, Labour claimed last night. Research by the party shows that the size of Tory majorities in their 60 most vulnerable seats is dwarfed by the number of working families whose tax credits will be curbed.
The Daily Telegraph
HMV gets £40m supplier support
Entertainment retailer HMV is being backed over the vital Christmas trading period with funding of around £40m from its suppliers.
Three in four set to buy fewer presents
Saving – not giving – seems set to be the theme for Austerity Christmas 2012, with three in four people saying they will not to buy presents this festive season for at least some of the friends and family they gave to last year.
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
Rosneft-TNK deal nears completion
Russian oil company Rosneft is finalizing an agreement with a group of Soviet-born billionaires to buy their 50 per cent stake in oil venture TNK-BP for $28bn (£17.4bn), according to people familiar with the matter.
US trade gap widened in October
The US trade gap expanded 4.9 per cent to hit $42.2bn (£26.2bn) in October as the deficit with China hit record levels and fuel consumption and costs rose, the Commerce Department said yesterday.