Press Round-up – January 25

January 25, 2012

IMF issues $440 billion global warning for 2012
Europe will enter a mild recession this year, Britain will slow to a crawl and growth worldwide will expand significantly less than hoped, the International Monetary Fund said. (Times)

S&P downgrades French banks
The loss of France’s long-cherished triple A sovereign debt status spilt over into its banking sector on Tuesday as Standard & Poor’s cut its long-term ratings for Societe Generale and Credit Agricole, two of the country’s top three banks. (FT)


Apple’s revenue surges past forecasts
The world’s most valuable technology corporation Apple has blasted past Wall Street expectations, with record quarterly revenues of $46.3 billion (£29.7 billion), powered by the sale of 37 million iPhones in its December quarter. (FT)

EU raises pressure with threat of Greek default
EU officials have stepped up pressure on Greece and its creditor banks in a complex game of three-way brinkmanship, signalling that they will allow a Greek default to run its course unless both sides accept more pain. (Telegraph)

UniCredit plans to raise billions through bonds
UniCredit is planning to raise up to 25 billion euros through the issue of so-called covered bonds as Italy’s largest bank by assets seeks to open up a new stream of funding amid ongoing pressures on bank liquidity in the euro zone. (FT)

UK watchdog to protect ‘irrational’ investors
Investors cannot be counted on to make rational choices so regulators need to “step into their footprints” and limit or ban the sale of potentially harmful products, the head of the UK’s new consumer protection watchdog said. (FT)

Huawei heads for site in East Anglia
Huawei, the Chinese group that beat Marconi to win a key BT fibre-optics contract, has strengthened its foothold in Britain by buying a research laboratory in East Anglia. (Times)

EU’s  Barnier provides hope for DB-NYSE merger
Deutsche Borse and NYSE Euronext have been given some hope of mustering support to save their merger after Europe’s leading financial regulator moved to reserve his right to oppose a recommendation to block the tie-up of the German and U.S. exchange operators.   (FT)

Pinault aiming for merger with rival
The man behind luxury brands Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, and Stella McCartney is hoping to spearhead consolidation in the UK insurance market with a 100 million pound bid to merge his AIM-listed Tawa with rival Charles Taylor. (Telegraph)

McDonald’s Twitter campaign hijacked
Critics of McDonald’s have turned the fast-food chain’s advertising campaign on Twitter against itself, unleashing a torrent of abusive tweets, in the latest example of how social media marketing can backfire. (FT)

Euro zone leaders must offer ‘incentives’,  says World Bank
Germany and its European partners should widen the proposed fiscal pact with “incentives” for euro zone countries that are implementing fiscal and structural reforms, the president of the World Bank wrote in the Financial Times on Wednesday. (FT)

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