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Press Round-up – March 20

By Reuters Staff
March 20, 2012

Delay tactic to cost Treasury billions in tax
British finance minister George Osborne’s plans to scrap the 50 pence tax rate from next year could cost the Treasury billions of pounds in lost revenues as top earners delay taking income until the rate is cut, accountants warned. (Telegraph)

OBR raises forecast for economic growth
Forecasts for the UK economy will be revised a touch higher in the budget on Wednesday, as the Office for Budget Responsibility is expected to follow recent more optimistic moves by private sector economists.   (FT)

LSE pursues ‘holy grail’ of clearing
This week London Stock Exchange shareholders and those of LCH.Clearnet, the Anglo-French clearer, will receive a 169-page offer document setting out the terms of the UK bourse’s proposal to acquire a majority stake in the London-based clearing house. (FT)

BBC director general to step down after Olympics
The BBC’s director general, Mark Thompson, will step down after the London Olympics, bringing to a close eight tumultuous years in charge of the corporation. (Guardian)

Swaps squad to oversee U.S. market
A specialised enforcement “squad” has been set up by Washington’s main futures regulator as it increases scrutiny of the $300 trillion U.S. derivatives market, a top official said.   (FT)

Saudi Arabia moves to calm oil market
Saudi Arabia is taking steps to cool the overheating global energy market, boosting its exports to the U.S. and reopening old oilfields to expand production, as the world’s largest oil producer tries to prevent damage to the global economic recovery. (FT)

Disney in $200 million writedown for film flop
Walt Disney will incur a $200 million writedown on John Carter, the action film based on the Edgar Rice Burroughs novel which has failed at the box office despite a $300 million production budget and an extensive global marketing campaign. (FT)

Barclays Capital hit in commodities trading jostle
The hierarchy of investment banks in the fiercely competitive arena of commodities trading has been shaken up as Barclays Capital, usually a leader, suffered one of its worst performances in a decade last year while JPMorgan  and Deutsche Bank enjoyed a surge in revenues. (FT)

Deutsche Borse to sue EC over NYSE block
Deutsche Borse said it would take the European Commission to court to try to overturn its decision last month to block its tie-up with NYSE Euronext, in what would have been the world’s largest exchange deal. (FT)

EU demands Google response to privacy worry
European data protection authorities have asked Google to respond to concerns about the search engine’s new privacy policy, which came into force at the beginning of March. (FT)

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