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Saturday Papers: Private equity investors circle collapsed Carillion

And Royal Dutch Shell is planning to crash London’s transport market with a new venture.

Saturday Papers: Private equity investors circle collapsed Carillion

Top stories

  • Financial Times: Private equity groups and distressed buyout firms - including the Canadian fund manager Brookfield and British private equity group Endless, which specialises in turnrounds - are circling collapsed British construction company Carillion to cherry-pick assets from one of the UK’s most politically sensitive corporate failures.
  • The Times: MPs have begun an inquiry into the handling of Carillion’s pension deficit after the building group’s collapse last week with debts of at least £1.3 billion.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Royal Dutch Shell is planning to crash London’s transport market with a new venture for the FTSE 100 energy giant that could create a fresh challenger to Uber.
  • The Guardian: The chair of the British Medical Association has demanded answers about the future of two major hospitals that Carillion was building when it collapsed, amid mounting concern about the impact of any delays on stretched NHS services.
  • The Guardian: UK retail sales fell by 1.5% in December in the latest sign that consumers were feeling the strain of falling real pay over the crucial Christmas shopping period.
  • The Daily Telegraph: BT has suffered a setback in its campaign to ease the burden of its £50 billion pension scheme after the High Court rejected a bid to make payouts less generous.
  • The Times: Dignity, one of Britain’s biggest funeral providers, delivered a heavy profit warning yesterday; its shares collapsed and lost almost half of their value and wiped about £470 million off the company’s market capitalisation.

Business and economics

  • Financial Times: The US stock market capped Donald Trump’s first year in office by setting a record for its longest-ever streak of tranquility.
  • Daily Express: Trump's tax reform could foil European Commission plans to ask huge businesses for more money amid fears corporations will now be lured away from the bloc to the United States.
  • The Daily Telegraph: British high street suffers its worst Christmas sales growth in five years as shoppers tighten their belts in the face of rising inflation.
  • Financial Times: Shares of ThyssenKrupp jumped 4% on Friday as management pledged to adapt its strategy in light of poor returns and increasingly vocal dissent from shareholders.
  • Financial Times: Warrior tribe enlists lawyers in battle for Maasai ‘brand’; royalties could be worth hundreds of millions of dollars, says advocacy group.
  • The Daily Telegraph: The multi-millionaire founder behind esure, Sir Peter Wood, has denied that a bust-up or a potential sale is behind the sudden exit of the British insurer's boss.
  • Financial Times: Amazon has raised the price of its Prime membership for the first time since 2014.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Dixons Carphone said Shop Direct's Alex Baldock was joining as its chief executive in an announcement late on Friday, after it emerged that current boss Sebastian James had resigned from the role to run Boots.
  • The Guardian: Facebook is poised to appoint Eurosport’s chief executive, Peter Hutton, to lead its multibillion-dollar drive to secure streaming rights for top-flight live sport.
  • Daily Mail: Italian authorities have launched investigations into Apple and Samsung over claims they deliberately slowed their devices down.
  • The Times: The financial services industry will suffer far fewer job losses from Brexit than first feared, the City of London’s policy head Catherine McGuinness has claimed.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Genel Energy has a chance to relaunch its floundering fortunes amid an unexpected Kurdish gas boom which is set to test investor confidence in the politically turbulent region.
  • The Daily Telegraph: Coca-Cola has become the latest company to address concerns about packaging waste as it unveiled plans to help collect and recycle all of its bottles by 2030.
  • The Times: The womenswear retailer Bonmarché reported a strong rise in online sales of 28.5% in the third quarter, but it failed to offset a drop in money reaching the tills in its stores, leading to an overall fall of 6.9% in like-for-like sales for the 13 weeks to the end of December.

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Scrapping lifetime allowance would be good medicine

Scrapping lifetime allowance would be good medicine

With the lower limit piling yet more pressure on hard-pressed hospital staff, the chancellor may look at ways to overhaul pension tax treatment