What the other papers say this morning

FINANCIAL TIMES

Pessimism mars growth expectations
Britons should brace themselves for another year of weak growth as the prospects of a recovery remain gloomy, according to the Financial Times’ New Year survey of 94 leading economists. A larger number of those surveyed thought George Osborne should rethink his austerity drive.

Sun European set to buy Paragon
Sun European Partners is to purchase Paragon Print and Packaging, which makes labels and packaging for food retailers such as Tesco and Sainsbury.
The deal, which takes the buyout fund close to 30 acquisitions of packaging company globally, values Paragon at about £150m, according to a person with knowledge of the sale.

Motorists face increase in premiums
Young drivers are facing rises in insurance premiums running into hundreds of pounds after reinsurers this week pushed up the costs for underwriters passing on risks to them by more than 20 per cent.


THE TIMES

Firms pay MPs in lobby free-for-all
MPs and peers have received hundreds of thousands of pounds from arms makers, pharmaceutical companies and foreign governments to sponsor parliamentary special interest groups.

Punishing year looms for the banks
The risks faced by British banks have increased in the past 12 months, underlining how the sector faces a turbulent and costly year ahead, according to a Euromoney report.

The Daily Telegraph

Cyprus President hits out at austerity
Cyprus President Demetris Christofias has hit out against the harsh austerity measures being meted out to struggling Eurozone members as the Mediterranean island faces a bleak new year.

Huawei under spotlight over Iran
Chinese technology company Huawei is under the spotlight again after documents were uncovered that allegedly show it offered to sell €1.3m (£1.1m) of Hewlett-Packard equipment to Iran, in breach of trade sanctions.

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
EUROPE

Ultra HD next step in TV revolution
Manufacturers are angling to kick off another TV buying spree. They are gearing up to promote what the industry calls “ultra high-definition” televisions, or UHDTVs, which promise four times the resolution of existing TVs.

Companies prepare for health law
One of the biggest decisions for many companies this year will be what to do about their health benefits. They have just 12 months before the health law overhaul.