News digest 16 May 2013

News digest 16 May 2013

16 May 2013

Today’s digest opens with more hassle for prime minister David Cameron as 115 Tory MPs rebelled against the government and backed the amendment voting to regret the lack of a referendum bill in the Queen’s speech. The amendment fell as Labour and Lib Dems refused to back it, however, the eurosceptics will be emboldened by the latest draw in the private member’s bills, namely Eurosceptic Conservative MP James Wharton has topped this year's ballot, Cameron’s just not having much luck is he...

Also not having much luck are another 15,000 people that found themselves without work in the last quarter. Many of the papers report on the rise in unemployment for the third quarter in a row – and even with talk of a possible economic recovery – it looks like unemployment is remaining stubbornly fixed above 2.52 million. Unite general secretary Len McCluskey said: “[The] jobless figures confirm David Cameron and George Osborne have nothing to offer but more of the same – lashings of austerity in a low-wage economy. Their polices, that have benefited the rich and powerful so generously, are leaving the lives of ordinary people in tatters. The 15,000 increase in unemployment for January-March is the latest in their list of disgrace, as is the continuing rise of those without work for more than two years to 464,000.” What is more those numbers will continue to rise, many papers report 14,000 more job cuts are expected at HSBC while Mark Littlewood in the Times makes a call for people to work into their seventies, that will help deal with the crisis in youth unemployment won’t it? As ever those most in need are given the least support.

And as the challenge over the sweetheart deal between Amazon and HMRC fails in court, there’s yet more coverage in the papers of the tax bills – or lack of – of big multinationals. The Guardian leads with a key focus on Amazon and how it is pushing the tax rulebook to the limits to minimise its tax bill, last year the company paid £2.4 million in tax on UK sales of some £320 million although it told investors its UK sales were £4.2 billion. The company also received £2.5 million in state support so effectively ordinary people are paying for the company to operate here. Where do the profits go? It’s notable that the coverage in the Mirror is on the same page as its details into the fuel price scandal where even the prime minister has said oil giants involved in price fixing should be jailed, believe it when you see it as big business always seems to get off.

Sadly, there’s a second tragic story this week, this time of one person hit by payday lenders. The Mirror, Sun and Express are among the papers highlighting the ‘hounding’ of desperate father by payday lenders. Anthony Breeze died after setting himself on fire on the same day he had three texts and two phone calls demanding he pay back his outstanding debts, and even after his death letters continued to be sent to his family demanding money. His wife said his phone never stopped ringing the night before he died. It’s a reminder that behind the statistics and numbers there are real people still desperately struggling to get by and survive…

 Morning Star

 Daily Mirror




 Times (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • Recovery in sight, declares bank chief (p1)
  • Cameron outflanked by eurosceptics (p4)
  • Amazon pays tax (p6)
  • HS2 has funding black hole (p10-11)
  • Work into your 70s. It will be good for you – Mark Littlewood (p27)
  • Ofwat chief goes (p39)
  • Joblessness on the up (p41)
  • 14,000 more HSBC job cuts (p42)
  • Boots rejects tax attack (p45)
  • S&P doubts Co-op’s ability to prop up bank (p45)




 FT (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • King signals UK on road to recovery as eurozone suffers (p1)
  • Oil price probe (p2)
  • Rebound in jobs market stalls (p3)
  • Cameron taken to task by backbenchers (p4)
  • RBS lined up for sale (p4)
  • HSBC reveals fresh job cuts (p19)
  • easyJet pitches for more aircraft (p20)
  • Capital concerns weigh on Co-op (p25)
  • Boots defends tax bill (p25)

 Edited by Mik Sabiers

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