What the other papers say this morning

FINANCIAL TIMES

Brussels softens line on ringfencing
The European commissioner in charge of regulatory reform of the region’s banks has signalled a retreat from plans to force lenders to build barriers around their securities trading operations, as policy makers focus on stimulating growth.

Michel Barnier told the Financial Times that any implementation of last year’s Liikanen report on the structure of European banks would have to “preserve their diversity” and avoid “penalising” lenders that were supporting the economy.

Wider euro Tobin tax will net €35bn
The Eurozone’s biggest economies would raise €30bn-€35bn from their planned levy on financial transactions, according to an expansive European Commission proposal that ensnares trades executed in London, New York or Hong. Brussels’ drive for a Europe-wide tax opened an irreconcilable rift between European Union members. In a bid to clampdown on avoidance, as “a last resort” the Commission proposes the tax should also apply to transactions based on where the financial product was issued, even if the parties trading it are in Asia, the US or Britain.

THE TIMES

House broker hangs up on BT
Bank of America Merrill Lynch, broker to BT, alongside JP Morgan Cazenove, has told clients that the shares are no longer worth buying. It also trimmed its target price for the shares from 285p to 265p.

Presidents’ doctor joins BAT
Richard Tubb, the son of a tobacco farmer, and who was the doctor of successive American Presidents and helped Barack Obama to stop smoking, has joined the board of British American Tobacco.

The Daily Telegraph

Pimco boss says EU exit threatens UK ‘standard of living’
Britain risks seeing its standard of living hit if it leaves the EU, according to Mohamed El-Erian, chief executive of Pimco, the world’s largest bond fund.

Middle class suffer from booze policy
Older, middle-class drinkers will bear the brunt of David Cameron’s minimum alcohol price plan, according to experts who predict one of its main effects will be to end today’s multi-buy deals.

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

ECB balance sheet shrinks
The European Central Bank’s balance sheet shrank to its lowest level in nearly a year, signaling a more restrictive monetary policy that could drive the euro’s exchange rate higher and further threaten the region’s economy.

Hostess nears Twinkie deal
Hostess is near to a deal to sell its Twinkie brand and other cakes to private-equity firms Apollo and C Dean Metropoulos for over $400m (£254m).