In the papers: JP Morgan Chase Coca Cola Walt Disney Company
(MENAFN - ProactiveInvestors - UK) Proactive Investors 08:23
Oil 'will struggle to hit $50 again': Oil prices may not recover to more than $50 a barrel and could be set for further steep falls before they approach even that level as Iran and Iraq crank up their production a leading energy expert has warned.
Kumba Iron finds itself in a hole: Anglo American's Kumba Iron Ore division reported a 90% drop in annual profit because of slumping prices of steel's key ingredient.
Healthy eating fad gives supermarkets new year boost: Britain's grocers had something to smile about after the food market appeared to be slowly returning to growth despite a disappointing Christmas.
Bills row engulfs concrete maker: One of Britain's largest concrete makers has angrily denied claims that it mistreats its suppliers by taking up to three months to settle its bills.
Ceiling looms for London's rental market: The rapid rise in the cost of renting in Greater London is showing signs of slowing suggesting that the capital has reached 'an affordability ceiling' according to research by HomeLet.
Regional REIT assets leap past 500 million: Regional REIT has bought a British property portfolio that takes its assets to more than 500 million for the first time.
Ascential float nets Guardian group 30 million: The publisher of The Guardian newspaper has made almost 30 million after Ascential the events and business magazine company it jointly owned with Apax was floated at a value of 800 million.
Achilles Macris: FCA fines ex-JP Morgan banker 800000 over 'London Whale': The City watchdog has fined a former Executive at JP Morgan Chase nearly 800000 for failing to be 'open and co-operative' over the bank's controversial 4.2 billion 'London Whale' losses.
Facebook ordered to stop tracking users without their consent by French data regulator: Facebook must stop tracking people who don't use the site within three months the French data protection authority has told it.
Agent Provocateur lined up for possible sale as Boss Garry Hogarth steps down: The private equity group 3i has moved a step closer to selling its luxury lingerie business Agent Provocateur after it parted company with Chief Executive Garry Hogarth.
U.K. housebuilders: landed gently: After years of surging home prices transactions in prime central London property last year fell 12% according to data provider LonRes. On Tuesday Redrow a U.K. housebuilder reported sluggishness in its central London business. Real estate investment trusts have been weak.
Swedbank: crying Wolf: Michael Wolf was fired on Tuesday partly because of a scandal involving the banks' Executives property deals and potential conflicts of interest. The shares fell 6% in response.
Coco bonds: a mug or two: Taking risk in return for high yields involves as it turns out risk. And while central banks are good at encouraging risk-for-yield trades they are as it turns out not good at engineering smooth exits from them.
Tuitonic: The holidays business which also has a listing in Frankfurt is becoming more German in tone. Industry veteran Peter Long has stepped down as joint Chief Executive leaving compadre Fritz Joussen in sole charge of a an appropriately Teutonic Executive board.
Macris cross: Greek hero Achilles sulked in his tent when piqued. Namesake Achilles Macris a former JPMorgan Executive embroiled in the 'London Whale' trading scandal issues press releases. This has allowed him to hail a settlement with the Financial Conduct Authority as 'a major climb-down' after 'four years that I have spent fighting to clear my name.'
The Daily Telegraph
German finance Minister and bank Chief insist: Deutsche is 'rock solid': John Cryan the Chief Executive of Deutsche Bank has come out publicly to claim the bank is 'rock solid' following a dramatic drop in the troubled German giant's share price.
Europe's 'doom-loop' returns as credit markets seize up: Credit stress in the European banking system has suddenly turned virulent and begun spreading to Italian Spanish and Portuguese government debt reviving fears of the sovereign 'doom-loop' that ravaged the region four years ago.
Britons shun Disneyland Paris following terrorist attack: Britons cancelling trips to France since a terrorist attack in Paris last November left 130 people dead have contributed to an 8% drop in visitor numbers to Disneyland Paris.
Aircraft makers face stringent new targets on jets' CO2 emissions: Newly agreed pollution controls mean that airliners will have to become more efficient and pump out a third less carbon dioxide potentially presenting a headache for aircraft manufacturers.
Bond anxiety pushes L&G to reveal its portfolio: The anxiety swirling around the bond market has prompted the insurer Legal & General to take the unusual step of reporting its exposure to the debts of oil firms and other bond issuers.
Coca-Cola sales fizz despite sugar backlash: Coca-Cola the world's largest soft drinks company reported better-than-expected profits in its fourth quarter despite falling sales as a result of currency fluctuations.
Bank of England poised to act if household debt spirals: Bank of England policymakers will act 'sooner rather than later' to curb credit growth if the recent rise in household debt starts to gather pace a top official has said.
Vodafone under investigation over customer service record: The communications watchdog is investigate how Vodafone handles customer complaints amid fears the telecoms giant could have mishandles disputes.
The Questor Column:
Avoid loss-making Sophos as private equity exits: EVER since Sophos became the U.K.'s biggest ever technology flotation in July last year it has struggled to justify its punchy valuation. Sophos writes software that protects firms against hackers and cyber criminals. The amount customers were billed increased by 17% and revenue increased 23% during the 12 months to the end of March. However the company still reported a full-year loss before tax of $54.3 million (37 million). The latest update showed that growth slowed markedly at the end of last year. Customer billings increased by 10.6% and revenue increased by 4.7% during the three months to the end of December. The company's Founders Jan Hruska and Peter Lammer failed to list Sophos in 2007 and 2009 due to tough market conditions before and after the financial crisis. The pair eventually sold a 70% stake to U.S. private equity group Apax for 372 million in 2010 giving the company a total valuation of about 530 million. The stock market listing in July last year at 225p per share valued the company at 1 billion and allowed Apax to cut its stake to 40%. The rest of the float raised about $100 million in cash net of fees. The majority of that money was used to reduce the debt pile from $319 million to about $220 million. Apax sold a further 60 million shares worth about 150 million at 250p per share on the market in December to cut its stake to 22%. The shares have fallen 26% during the past three months and are well below their 225p float price. Questor is struggling to find reasons to buy shares in this overvalued and loss-making company as private equity makes for the exit. Avoid. Sophos at 176.2p -30p. Questor says 'Avoid'.
Randgold Resources gold shares soar on solid results: Gold miner Randgold Resources remains one of the best defensive options as market jitters send the gold price higher and the shares rose more than 12% on a solid set of annual results. However the miner isn't immune to the commodity sell-off and it is feeling the pain from lower gold prices. Pretax profits slumped by $93 million to $260 million for the year to the end of December. The 6% increase in production to 1.21 million ounces was not enough to offset the 9% fall in the price of gold last year. Randgold is well-placed to weather the storm. The company has a strong balance sheet with no debts and $213 million in cash at the end of December up from $141 million nine months earlier. The annual dividend was increased by 10% to 66c (45p). The company has undergone a major investment phase to reduce its cost of production and can live with lower gold prices for longer than many other smaller and higher-cost producers. Looking out over the long term Randgold is likely to be a survivor of the commodities downturn and should be able to buy discounted assets at some point in the cycle. Trading on 27 times forecast earnings the shares are by no means cheap and investors are being asked to pay a handsome premium for exposure to gold. That said this looks like one of the best places to get pure gold exposure through buying shares in a FTSE 100 listed company. Hold. Randgold Resources at 60.00 +700p. Questor says 'Hold'.
Shares dive as fears mount for health of global banking: Growing anxiety about whether banks can withstand continued low interest rates and fears of a re-run of the 2008 financial crisis continued to stalk markets when shares fell to a three-year low and bank shares remained volatile.
Global woes will delay U.K. interest rate rise until 2020 say analysts: Anxiety in global markets and a weakening U.S. economy will force the Bank of England to delay U.K. interest rate rises until at least 2020 according to a leading firm of analysts.
U.K. trade deficit widens further as exports suffer: Britain's trade deficit worsened in the final quarter of 2015 amid global market turmoil and a slowdown in emerging market growth that has hit exports.
Report calling for abolition of Network Rail increases fears of privatization: Fears the government could privatise Network Rail have been heightened after a report from an influential thinktank called for its abolition and endorsed closing lines and deregulating fares.
Music publisher agrees to pay $14 million to end Happy Birthday song lawsuit: In a settlement filed with courts on Monday music publisher Warner/Chappell agreed to pay $14 million to end the lawsuit challenging its right to Happy Birthday To Youpossibly the world's most famous song.
Age U.K. and E.ON suspend controversial tariff for pensioners: Energy giant E.ON and charity Age U.K. are to suspend a controversial branded tariff for pensioners to new and renewing customers.
Global oil glut set to worsen says IEA: The global oil glut is larger than previously thought and the risk of prices falling further has increased the International Energy Agency has said.
Short sellers bet 3 billion against the U.K.'s biggest names in a bid to exploit financial markets turmoil: Hedge funds have bet more than 3billion on the decline of ten of Britain's biggest companiesincluding Sainsbury's and Shellin a bid to exploit the turmoil on financial markets.
Banks pay to lend to State in Japan as yield on 10-year bonds falls below zero: Japan has become the first major economy to see the yield on 10-year bonds fall below zeromeaning investors are paying for the privilege of lending to the government.
London-based traders caught up in probe into 1 trillion government-sponsored bond market: London-based traders have been caught up in an escalating probe into a 1 trillion government- sponsored bond market.
Body Shop goes back to its roots as it launches new ethical push: Body Shop is aiming to reclaim the title of the most ethical store on the high street.
Boss of Serious Fraud Office keeps job - days after losing Libor-rigging case: The Boss of the Serious Fraud Office has had a contract boost just days after losing the high-profile Libor-rigging case.
Sir Stelios wants 19 million more from easyJet as he threatens legal action over the firm's dividend policy: Billionaire tycoon Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou has threatened legal action in his battle with EasyJet over its dividend policy.
Petrol prices set to rise in George Osborne's 2016 Budget: Drivers are set to see higher prices at the pump as George Osborne plans to increase fuel duty in his Budget next month according to industry experts.
EU facing imminent recession? Germany on brink as warning issued over Deutsche Bank: Fears of a recession in the Eurozone are rising as Germany's economy shows yet more signs of buckling under global and domestic financial pressures.
Stock market crisis: Panic as FTSE hits three-year low and investors 'give up' on banks: Global stock markets were flashing red again as fears over the world economy and another world recession loom ever larger amid worries central banks have run out of ammunition to tackle problems.
Holiday bookings to Turkey plunge 40% amid terror fears: Holidaymakers are avoiding Turkey for their sunny getaways as fears of a terrorist attack has seen bookings plummet 40%.
The Scottish Herald
North Sea firms slash more jobs as confidence slumps to record low: Confidence levels in the North Sea have slumped to a record low amid widespread job cutting in the area in response to the renewed fall in the crude price a survey has found.
Clydesdale Bank gets boost from ratings agency: Newly-independent Clydesdale Bank has received a boost after a leading international agency said it is no longer considering cutting the lender's credit rating.
Daffy's wins Waitrose supply deal for its gin: Daffy's gin which is distilled and bottled at Broxburn in West Lothian has won a deal to supply all 234 of supermarket chain Waitrose's U.K. stores.
Insurance broker targets growth and acquisitions in Scotland after nine-figure investment: A London and Glasgow-based insurance broker that secured a nine-figure investment in December is opening its first office in Edinburgh and seeking bolt-on acquisitions across Scotland.
Axis-Shield secures 1.25 million from Barclays: Medical diagnostics business Axis-Shield has secure a 1.25 million funding line from Barclays.
Cumbernauld soup firm wins 250000 Tesco supply deal: The Scottish Soup Company is celebrating after being awarded a 250000 deal with Tesco to supply five products to 64 of the supermarket giant's stores north of the Border.
Boat Race Boss joins crew at RBS's Williams & Glyn: Royal Bank of Scotland has named Rob Allen as head of commercial banking at its Williams & Glyn spin-off.
Hunter Boot names Vincent Wauters as Chief Executive: Wellington company Hunter Boot has announced the appointment of Vincent Wauters as its Chief Executive effective from next month.
Wood Group extends North Sea contract with Chevron: Oil and gas services giant Wood Group is extending its support deal with Chevron in the North Sea.
Glasgow animation studio teams up with E4 and Netflix: A Glasgow animation studio that has worked on some of the biggest titles in the gaming world is bringing a new project to the small screen.
New buyer registrations for prime London homes jump as buy-to-let landlords rush to beat stamp duty hike: New buyer registrations for prime London homes soared in January as buy-to-let landlords scramble to complete their purchases before the stamp duty hike comes into effect in April.
Burberry sues U.S. retailer JC Penney accusing it of trademark infringement over coats jackets and scarves allegedly featuring the 'Burberry check' pattern: British luxury fashion brand Burberry has filed a complaint against U.S. retailer JC Penney accusing it of trademark infringement for selling coats and jackets bearing exact copies of the 'Burberry check' pattern.
Standard & Poor's lowers ratings on four U.S. banks with large energy exposures as oil prices stay weak: Standard & Poor's (S&P) has lowered its long-term issuer credit ratings on four U.S. regional banks with large energy exposures.
U.S. Foods shrugs off market turmoil to file for IPO: U.S. Foods the U.S.' second-largest food distributor has just filed for a $100 million (69.1 million) initial public offering (IPO) - despite two days of turbulent global trading.
Walt Disney Company share price drops despite record earnings in the first quarter driven by new Star Wars film as revenue misses expectations: The Walt Disney Company has reported its highest ever quarterly earnings of $2.9 billion (2 billion) up from $2.2 billion in the first quarter of 2015 driven largely by the success of the latest Star Wars film.
Pandora shares lose their shine after jeweller forecasts sales slowdown in 2016: Shares in Pandora have slumped by seven% after the Danish jewellery firm warned of a slowdown in revenue growth over the coming year.
Barclays poaches new Chief operating officer Paul Compton from JP Morgan Chase: Barclays has poached Paul Compton from JP Morgan Chase to act as its new group Chief operating officer.
Grainger joint venture goes on 57 million west London buying spree: Grainger and Dutch pension fund APG have bought a large residential estate near Kew Bridge in west London for 57.3 million as the pair continue to expand their presence in the private rental sector (PRS).