News digest 4 December 2012

News digest 4 December 2012

04 December 2012

Today’s digest opens with wall to wall coverage of congratulations to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge after St James’ Palace announced that Katherine, the Duchess of Cambridge, is expecting a baby but is in hospital with severe morning sickness. Prime minister David Cameron was first off the blocks to offer his congratulations, he’s obviously looking for some positive news ahead of tomorrow’s Autumn statement which will not make great reading, especially after this morning’s latest GDP forecasts from the British Chambers of Commerce which increased its forecast for UK growth for 2012, but still expects the economy to shrink, albeit by just 0.1 per cent. The BCC has also cut its projections for next year stating that ‘growth remains too weak’.

Tomorrow chancellor George Osborne delivers his autumn statement right after PMQs, let’s see if we still all in it together or whether this will be omnishambles mark II. Osborne features in a few papers saying he will crack down on tax avoiders, and Starbucks has admitted it plans to pay more tax – but the Telegraph notes Google and Amazon are expected to play hardball. The one piece of good news is that Osborne has made yet another U-turn, this time on cuts to housing benefits for under-25s, but the Indie notes the big issue is the £22 billion hole in his budget after growth has not been as strong, the Express reports Osborne is once again looking at pension pots while the Mirror reports on how the poorest families can expect to be £2,000 a year worse off. It’s all summed up best by Polly Toynbee in the Guardian: Tories at half-time: cruel and inept, with worse to come.

Other stories include the threat of strike action by posties after they have been asked to deliver items from private mail operators, hospital beds are almost full, the Leveson media regulation law is on and off, the Mail reports on the possible end of the black cab, BA is to cut 400 senior cabin crew, as hospitals close reports come in that beds are almost full and the government announces that nurses will be rated on their compassion, just imagine if that was applied to the Con-Dem government, Osborne would be out of a job in seconds, followed by the rest of the motley Con-Dem crew that continue to cut without care or compassion…

 Morning Star

 Daily Mirror




 Times (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • We’re expecting (p1/6-7)
  • £5 billion mansion-tax loophole (p1/10-11)
  • All cases compassionate, nurses told (p3)
  • Leveson report (p16-17)
  • In the battle of the budget, who’s fair wins – Rachel Sylvester (p27)
  • Tell tax avoiders what to pay and make them pay it – Hugo Rifkind (p29)
  • Go it alone on infrastructure, Osborne told (p46)
  • Politicians prepare to dilute stakes in EADS (p47)




 FT (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • Chancellor backs gas to fire up Britain (p1)
  • BoE loan scheme fails to impress (p2)
  • Press laws not ruled out, says culture secretary (p2)
  • Osborne talks tough on big tax avoiders (p3)
  • Cost rises damp nuclear hopes (p4)
  • Manufacturing stable but outlook remains poor (p4) [index rises top 49.1]
  • The British have learnt to bear austerity – for now – Janan Ganesh (p11)
  • Crosby very sorry for catastrophe at HBOS (p15)
  • Murdoch reshuffles top jobs (p15)
  • Ford shifts up a gear on Lincoln (p16)
  • Dean Foods sells dairy unit (p18)
  • Monarch aims to soar over rivals (p22)

 Edited by Mik Sabiers

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