The US Treasury Secretary urged Europe’s leaders to follow through on their promises to do “whatever it takes” to save the euro as he embarked on a whirlwind round of diplomacy in Germany. Tim Geithner stoked speculation about a co-ordinated transatlantic push to bolster the single currency as he met Wolfgang Schäuble, the German Finance Minister, at a holiday resort island in Schleswig-Holstein. In a joint statement, the pair “expressed confidence in euro area member states’ efforts to reform and move towards greater integration”, before Mr Geithner flew to Frankfurt to see Mario Draghi, the European Central Bank’s President, The Times says.
Bankers found to have rigged Libor could face jail after the Serious Fraud Office said it will look to bring criminal charges against those who attempted to manipulate Libor, a key global borrowing rate. David Green QC, director of the SFO, said existing legislation could be used to bring criminal actions against banks implicated in the Libor rigging scandal. Mr Green did not specify the precise charges that could be brought but it is possible bankers found guilty of manipulation could receive prison sentences of up to 10 years, according to The Telegraph.
BP’s oligarch partners in TNK-BP have piled pressure on the oil major ahead of its half-year results on Tuesday by refusing to approve the payment of a $1bn (£637m) dividend by the Russian joint venture. BP’s oligarch partners in TNK-BP have piled pressure on the oil major ahead of its half-year results on Tuesday, by refusing to approve the payment of a $1bn (£637m) dividend by the Russian joint venture. BP proposed earlier this month that TNK-BP pay the special dividend, which would have provided a welcome boost to its coffers at a time when the venture’s regular payouts are suspended amid disagreement between the partners. The proposal required the approval of the four oligarchs of the Alfa-Access-Renova (AAR) group who sit on the joint venture’s board – and who yesterday announced they had voted against it, The Telegraph reports.
Ross Levinsohn, the interim chief executive of Yahoo! is leaving the company today, two weeks after the company announced that he had lost out on the top job to Google executive Marissa Mayer. He will leave with the payments outlined in his 2010 offer letter and 2011 severance agreement, plus an equity award of 67,000 restricted stock units and 250,000 stock options. The options have an exercise price of $15.80, the closing price on Friday, giving them a value of just over $5m. Mr Levinsohn took temporary control in May after Scott Thompson left unexpectedly over inaccuracies in his CV. He had been the principal internal candidate for the chief executive position. His sudden departure is regarded as a setback for Ms Mayer and many staff had apparently hoped that he would stay to run the company in tandem with his new boss, writes The Times.
It’s time for investors in pub group Greene King to stop filling their glasses, according to Liberum Capital analyst Patrick Coffey, who called last orders on his stock recommendation and cut the company to “hold” from “buy”. “Having rallied strongly over the last two months, we believe the shares are likely to pause for breath,” Mr Coffey said, although he boosted his target price to 593p from 575p. Indeed, the stock has had a good run, climbing 24% since the start of June. Greene King also reported a 7% increase in full-year pre-tax profit last month, bolstered by growth in food sales. However, Liberum’s change of heart put pressure on the pub group and the stock slipped 3½ to 607½p, The Telegraph reports.
Lloyds Banking has pledged to lend £5bn to first-time buyers over the course of 2012, creating more than 140 new homeowners every day. This should mean more than 50,000 of them will be able to buy their own property this year. In the first six months of the year, the Group has already helped more than 25,000 people take their first steps onto the property ladder. It provides one in three mortgages on affordable housing schemes and new build properties in the UK and 25 per cent of the funding for the Government’s NewBuy scheme, which is targeted at first-time buyers. Last week Lloyds cut rates by up to 0.2 percentage points on a range of loans, including some aimed at first-time buyers, The Times says.