Wednesday 21 February 2018

What it says in the papers: business pages

The front page of this morning's Irish Independent business section
The front page of this morning's Irish Independent business section
Gavin McLoughlin

Gavin McLoughlin

Here are the business stories you need to know about this morning:

Irish Independent

*A review of IFA pay revealed past presidents were not only paid up to €180,000 - but also received golden handshakes at the end of their terms.

But the body's Executive Staff are threatening legal action if their pay is disclosed.

Several members of the Executive Staff at the farmers' union say the IFA must ensure the "confidentiality" of staff salaries is fully respected and warned the association may be "exposing itself to potential liabilities" if remuneration is revealed.

*US activist investor Orange Capital has cut its stake in Irish drinks company C&C to below 3pc.

According to regulatory filings the New York-based firm reduced its stake from 5.2pc to less than 3pc via a transaction handled by Morgan Stanley on December 3.

Based on a share price of €3.68 on December 3, the shares would have been worth about €26m at the time of the sale. Orange Capital amassed a near 5pc stake in the company by October, becoming one of its largest shareholders, when it went public with a series of criticisms of C&C management.

*The number of female billionaires has grown seven-fold over the last 20 years, with Asia seeing the greatest increase, a report has found.

While the vast bulk of female billionaires come from the US and Europe, more than half of Asian billionaires are self-made, compared to just 19pc in America, and 7pc in Europe, according to the study by financial services group UBS and consultants PwC.

The number of female billionaires grew by a factor of 6.6 from 1995 to 2014, and the number of men by a smaller factor of 5.2.

The Irish Times

*Irish families are on average still 10pc worse off than when the economic crisis started, the ESRI said.

Though Budget 2016 led to a small increase in household disposable income as a whole (0.7pc), Budgets from 2009 until now led to income losses.

Those on old-age pensions lost the least, the ESRI said.

*Larry Goodman's ABP said it will notify Irish competition authorities over its plan to buy half of Slaney Foods.

Fine Gael MEP Mairead McGuinness had claimed the beef processor hadn't told the authorities about the plan, but ABP said it was still working through some parts of the deal would bring to to the authority's attention.

The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission said firms weren't obliged to notify mergers by a certain time but said no merger can be brought about unless cleared by it.

*International action to stop multinational tax avoidance could cost the Irish exchequer €600m, a new report said.

The report authored by UCC economist Seamus Coffey said big companies with European headquarters here might end up paying more tax where their products are sold, reducing the amount paid to the Irish exchequer.

Around three quarters of Irish corporation tax receipts come from foreign companies, the newspaper said.

Irish Examiner

*Tullow Oil shares rose 6pc yesterday after the company said exploratory drilling indicates there is significant potential in a Kenyan asset.

Merrion analyst Darren McKinley said Tullow's stake int he project could be as much as $1.2bn.

The find is seen as one of the company's most significant recent discoveries.

*European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said Eurozone countries should bolster investment and public finances rather than relying on loose monetary policy for growth.

He said the recovery is fragile and there should be no complacency.

Last month Brussels cut growth and inflation forecasts for the Eurozone, saying world economic conditions had become more challenging.

*The drop in oil has claimed its first victim in Norwegian offshore.

Seismic surveyor Dolphin Group is the first Oslo-listed company in the industry to file for bankruptcy. Its competitor Polarcus is in debt restructuring talks, and analysts expect more bankruptcies to follow.

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