Nationwide profits soar despite bad debts


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Nationwide profits soar despite bad debts

Nationwide profits soar despite bad debts
Nationwide, Britain’s biggest building society, grabbed its largest-ever share of the mortgage market last year and saw its profits jump as it continued to attract customers from discredited high street banks.
The Independent, p. 62
Also appeared in : Evening Standard London, p.44, Financial Times Companies and Markets, p.27, The Guardian, p.40

Help-to-Buy may fuel house price bubble that hurts first-time buyers, says IMF
The International Monetary Fund has warned that the government’s Help-to-Buy cheap loans scheme may be counterproductive by fuelling a house price bubble that locks potential buyers out of the market.
The Daily Telegraph Business, p. 4

Nationwide profits up as public supports building societies
Britain’s biggest building society, Nationwide, yesterday reported a boom in new customer numbers and in profits as dissatisfaction with banks pushed more savers and borrowers towards the group.
City AM London, p. 5
Also appeared in : The Daily Telegraph Business, p.5, The Times, p.55

Inquiry into banks’ capital rebounds on new regulator
Yesterday the Prudential Regulation Authority said it had completed its work on Lloyds Banking Group and Royal Bank of Scotland and had found no grounds to ask either of the two taxpayer-backed lenders to raise more capital beyond their existing fund raising plans.
The Daily Telegraph Business, p. 5
Also appeared in : Evening Standard London, p.44, Financial Times, p.1, The Times, p.51

UK banks lose ground to US rivals on fees
US, Swiss and German banks have all upped their share of the UK’s investment banking revenues so far in 2013, sending British banks’ own revenues from the sector to their lowest level in more than a decade.
City AM London, p. 19

Osborne must do more to boost growth, warns IMF
George Osborne was today told to do more to boost growth by the world’s leading economic watchdog and to consider a new tax on under-used land. Public sector borrowing dipped to £6.3 billion in April and the Office for National Statistics said the UK borrowed £119.5 billion last year in total, down from the initial £120.6 billion estimate.
Evening Standard London, p. 2

IMF warns Osborne: time to end austerity and bring in Plan B
George Osborne has been urged to put his austerity programme on hold by the International Monetary Fund in order to support the anaemic economy. The IMF’s recommendations, made yesterday at the culmination of its annual health check of the UK, effectively amount to a call for the Government to adopt an economic “Plan B”.
The Independent, p. 6-7
Also appeared in : Independent i, p.9, Financial Times, p.1, Financial Times Companies and Markets, p.23, International Herald Tribune, p.16, The Guardian, p.7

Swiss franc retreats after SNB talks of negative interest rates
The head of Switzerland’s central bank said it could impose negative interest rates to weaken its currency against the euro.
This abstract from the Financial Times was produced by Kantar Media
Financial Times Companies and Markets, p. 37

Recovery hit as retail sales suffer worst slide in a year
The UK’s tentative steps towards economic recovery were shaken yesterday by the worst slide in retail sales for a year, sluggish progress on cutting the deficit and a stagnant quarter for the nation’s manufacturers.
Independent i, p. 48

Watchdog backs Lloyds and RBS on capital levels
Britain’s taxpayer-bailed-out banks reassured the City yesterday that they will not need to raise fresh capital despite the Bank of England recently saying the UK banking sector had a £25bn capital shortfall.
Independent i, p. 49

Markets soar as Fed boss rules out abrupt halt to QE
US Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke yesterday said the American economy was in better health than a year ago, but the Fed not halt its programme of quantitative easing any time soon. He said the Fed will keep its short-term interest rate close to zero for a “considerable time” and has no immediate plans to wind down the quantitative easing programme, under which the central bank buys $85bn (£57bn) in bonds a month. His comments came as Sir Mervyn King Bank of England Governor called for a £25bn increase in quantitative easing, but was outvoted for a fourth consecutive month.
The Daily Telegraph Business, p. 1
Also appeared in : Independent i, p.51

New policy in Japan may endure
The Bank of Japan may end up pursuing its huge monetary easing program for as long as five years before achieving inflation levels conducive to unwinding the aggressive economic stimulus, a Reuters survey of economists and former officials at the central bank suggests.
International Herald Tribune, p. 16
Also appeared in : International Herald Tribune, p.14

BoJ puts faith in stimulus and keeps policy on hold
The Bank of Japan kept monetary policy unchanged yesterday on the basis that the big stimulus package unveiled in April would spur growth and lift prices.
This abstract from the Financial Times was produced by Kantar Media
Financial Times, p. 13

Bank sales to start in summer
George Osborne yesterday said that the government will set out its strategy to sell of the taxpayer’s stakes in Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds Banking Group after the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards’ final report is published next month. His comments came shortly after regulators gave the two banks the all-clear on their loss buffers. Although Lloyds is expected to have to raise up to £3bn and RBS around £6bn, the banks said they would be able to meet the regulators’ demands without selling any new shares to bolster their capital positions.
The Daily Telegraph Business, p. 1

Extra £10bn splurge ‘can cement UK recovery’
The International Monetary Fund delivered its annual update on the state of the UK economy yesterday, and suggested that the government should borrow as much as £10bn extra this year for infrastructure spending and business tax cuts to make sure Britain’s “nascent” recovery takes hold. Prospects for growth remain weak and the UK is “still a long way from a strong and sustainable recovery”, the report said, with IMF deputy managing director David Lipton adding: “We suggest the Government bring forward planned capital spending and consider measures such as reducing the effective marginal tax rate on investment and introducing tax allowances to raise equity”. Alongside a looser fiscal stance, the IMF urged the Bank of England to press ahead with monetary stimulus, throwing its weight behind the preferred policies of incoming Governor Mark Carney.
The Daily Telegraph Business, p. 1-4

IMF backs more state cash for RBS and Lloyds – to benefit taxpayer
George Osborne is preparing to set out his plans to return bailed-out Lloyds Banking Group and Royal Bank of Scotland to the private sector after the International Monetary Fund called on him to devise a “clear strategy” for the two banks.
The Guardian, p. 40

Four senior staff at RBS given £2.7m in shares
Four top bankers at Royal Bank of Scotland have been handed £2. 7m in shares from bonuses awarded to them by the bailed-out bank three years ago.
The Guardian, p. 42

The above articles appeared on 23/05/13 reproduced with the kind permission of Kantar Media UK. All rights reserved.

Charterbridge Private Financial Planning, Independent Financial Advice, Thornbury, Bristol.