Press Round-up – February 6

February 6, 2012

Tesco Bank delayed until next year
Tesco Bank has delayed the launch of its current account until next year. Its much vaunted arrival had been regarded as a symbolically important breakthrough in attempts backed by ministers to break up the dominance of the big five established UK banks. (Times)

RBS looks to defend SME lending record
Royal Bank of Scotland is preparing to mount a vigorous defence of its lending record to small and medium-sized businesses in an effort to stave off criticism over its failure to meet certain government-set targets last year. (FT)

Credit Agricole launches new financial model
Credit Agricole is launching a new financing model in its corporate and investment bank which will allow France’s third-largest lender by market value to continue project and trade finance, despite upcoming unfavourable capital rules, according to the unit’s chief executive. (FT)

Europe’s banks face capital challenge
The European Banking Authority is to challenge a significant proportion of the capital restructuring plans put forward by the continent’s leading banks to meet tough new capital requirements, say three people familiar with the process. (FT)

Vodafone set to abandon Greek merger
Vodafone is set to abandon attempts to merge its Greek business with rival Wind Hellas in the face of concerns among regulators about the precedent being set by allowing a duopoly in a European mobile market. (FT)

EC may probe ‘Glenstrata’ deal
Xstrata and Glencore could face an unexpected competition hurdle to their proposed 50 billion pound merger, with the EU poised to ignore an earlier ruling that would have avoided an investigation. (Telegraph)
Scotland not guaranteed triple A rating status
An independent Scotland would not be able to count on receiving triple A status, credit rating agencies have told the Financial Times, potentially leading to higher borrowing costs for it if a referendum on independence was successful. (FT)
Facebook to tap mobile ads for revenue
Facebook is set to begin showing advertisements to users on mobile devices within weeks in an effort to tap a new source of revenues before it goes public. (FT)
Dubai abandons massive debt restructuring
Dubai’s government has walked away from the $10 billion debt restructuring of one of its biggest conglomerates, leaving creditors, including the Royal Bank of Scotland <RBS.L>, with exposure to potentially big losses. (Telegraph)
Lion Capital in talks about Findus breakup
Private equity investor Lion Capital is in advanced talks to break up Findus in a move to avoid breaching the terms of the UK frozen food maker’s 700 million pound debt load. (FT)

Madrid prepares for privatisation spree
Madrid’s local government is quietly preparing a multibillion euro privatisation programme that could see chunks of the Spanish capital’s metro and water system sold to ease its spiralling debts. (FT)

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