PRESS DIGEST - British Business - March 1

March 1 Thu Feb 28, 2013 7:55pm EST

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March 1 (Reuters) - The Telegraph

RBS BOSS STEPHEN HESTER SLAPPED DOWN BY DOWNING STREET FOR SUGGESTING 2015 PRIVATISATION

Royal Bank of Scotland chief executive Stephen Hester has been slapped down by 10 Downing Street for suggesting that the state controlled bank could be sold off within two years.

BORIS: EU BONUS CURBS ARE 'DELUDED' AND 'SELF-DEFEATING'

Europe's bonus rules are "deluded" and "self-defeating" and will damage City of London, Boris Johnson has warned.

JAGUAR LAND ROVER URGES GOVERNMENT TO INVEST TO FUEL GROWTH

Jaguar Land Rover has urged ministers to put investment in innovation at the heart of Government policy if it is to successfully rebalance the economy and boost economic growth.

RYANAIR CUTS CAPACITY AT STANSTED BY ONE MILLION PASSENGERS

Ryanair announced it will cut capacity at Stansted by 9pc on the day the airport came under new ownership.

BP GULF PROBE 'DID NOT ADDRESS IMPACT OF COST CONCERNS'

BP's investigation of its disastrous 2010 Gulf of Mexico blowout did not address the impact of cost overruns on the well, a BP executive said on Thursday, in the final day of testimony this week in the massive civil trial over the spill.

NATIONAL EXPRESS INVESTORS PUSH FOR EXIT FROM UK RAIL

National Express is under pressure from shareholders to exit Britain's troubled rail industry in the wake of the West Coast Main Line scandal, it emerged on Thursday.

BRITISH AMERICAN TOBACCO TO BUY BACK 1.5 BLN STG OF SHARES

British American Tobacco cheered the market by announcing a 1.5 billion share buyback programme, as price rises and smokers trading up to premium brands helped the cigarette maker overcome falling sales.

The Guardian

RBS BOSS ADMITS 'CHASTENING' YEAR AS LOSSES BREACH 5 BLN STG

Royal Bank of Scotland declared on Thursday it was on track for a partial privatisation next year but sparked a fresh row over bonuses at the scandal-hit institution.

UK TO FIGHT EU PLAN TO CAP BANKERS' BONUSES

Britain is to challenge an EU agreement to slash bankers' bonuses at a meeting of European finance ministers next week after Boris Johnson condemned the proposal as a "deluded measure".

IAG DEFENDS BA-IBERIA MERGER

International Airlines Group has said it is too early to judge the British Airways-Iberia merger after its strike-hit Spanish unit pushed the wider business to a near-1bn loss with a writedown that all but wiped out BA's profits.

The Times

WILLIAM HILL PAYS OUT 425 MLN STG AND EVERYONE'S A WINNER

William Hill is being tipped to announce an equity issue after agreeing terms to buy out its online gambling partner in a 425 million pound deal.

REPUBLIC IS BROUGHT INTO ASHLEY'S RETAIL EMPIRE

Sports Direct has swooped to salvage yet another distressed rival, with a deal to take Republic out of administration.

The Independent

CITY FEARS EXODUS AS TOUGH CURBS ON BONUSES ARE AGREED

The City of London could be hit by an exodus of workers to New York, Hong Kong and Singapore, experts have warned, after politicians agreed to cap bankers' bonuses across Europe.

MAN CRISIS AFTER ARREST AND CASH LEAK

The scale of the crisis facing Man Group's new boss was laid bare as clients pulled billions more from its funds and an employee was arrested for insider dealing.

50 MLN STG RIGHTS ISSUE FOR SEVERFIELD-ROWEN

Severfield-Rowen, the UK's biggest structural steelwork company, has unveiled a rights issue to raise nearly 50 million pounds to help give it more breathing space from its lenders, following a "very difficult" 2012.

NEW FINANCE CHIEF FOR RIO AS BIG MINING SHUFFLE GOES ON

The changing of the guard continued in the FTSE-100 mining industry as Rio Tinto appointed Chris Lynch, a former finance head at BHP Billiton , as its chief financial officer.

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