PRESS DIGEST - Financial Times - Nov 26

Sun Nov 25, 2012 9:47pm EST

FT DIGEST, NOV 26

HEADLINES

CATALANS TAKE STEP TOWARDS BREAK-UP VOTE

JENKINS URGED TO SPLIT BARCLAYS

BARNIER SEEKS "POLITICAL WILL" ON BANK UNION

BLACKROCK EYES INFRASTRUCTURE DEBT MARKET

CAMERON PLEDGES TO AID FLOOD VICTIMS

TREASURY POISED TO TAKE OVER LAND SALES

MICROSOFT IN TALKS ON EUROPE STORES

Overview

CATALANS TAKE STEP TOWARDS BREAK-UP VOTE

Political parties in favour of a referendum on Catalan independence won a majority in regional elections. Left-wing separatists became the second largest force in Catalonia's parliament for the first time, while the less radical incumbent party lost seats. Projected turn-out was the highest for a Catalan regional election in over 30 years.

JENKINS URGED TO SPLIT BARCLAYS

At least three of the bank's 30 biggest shareholders have urged executives to follow the example of Swiss bank UBS and spin off some or all of its investment banking business.

BARNIER SEEKS "POLITICAL WILL" ON BANK UNION

European Union finance ministers must meet a December deadline on regional banking union to reassure "watchful" markets, EU commissioner Michel Barnier said in an interview. He backed a cap on bankers' bonuses, said there were better options for voting systems than the "double majority" favoured by the UK and said EU laws could eventually be changed to consolidate banking union.

BLACKROCK EYES INFRASTRUCTURE DEBT MARKET

The world's biggest fund manager is to launch an infrastructure investment unit, to cater to pension funds and insurance companies that want relatively safe assets with higher yields than government bonds. The move is expected to encourage other funds to invest in infrastructure.

TREASURY POISED TO TAKE OVER LAND SALES

A central body set up by the British treasury will seize control of the sale of public land sold by Whitehall departments, finance minister George Osborne will announce in next month's Autumn Statement.

CAMERON PLEDGES TO AID FLOOD VICTIMS

The British Prime Minister took to Twitter to promise the government would "ensure everything is being done to help" people in parts of England and Wales hit by winds and torrential rain which have left two people dead and forced hundreds from their homes.

MICROSOFT IN TALKS ON EUROPE STORES

Microsoft has looked into opening shops in Britain to retail its own devices as well as those made by other companies which run on its Windows operating system. A decision will hinge on how well its stores in the United States are deemed to be performing.

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