News digest 18 March 2013

News digest 18 March 2013

18 March 2013

The digest opens with a deal between the parties over Leveson - Labour's Harriet Harman says a deal was struck overnight on means to regulate the press and is believed to mean the royal charter can not be tampered with. Culture secretary Maria Miller has however said that a deal is close, but that the party leaders still need to talk, has prime minister David Cameron caved in in the face of a Commons defeat?

And from a prime minister losing power to a chancellor without a clue. Many of the papers trail Wednesday’s budget with the Guardian’s John Harris asking ‘if George Osborne has no answers, who does?’ while the FT says Osborne will admit a fresh blow to his debt targets. A few ideas are trailed with the Guardian saying Osborne will go for Heseltine’s regional growth plan while the Express and Mail say it will be a budget for pensioners as Osborne tries to end the memory of the granny tax and win over the so-called grey vote. The key issue for Osborne is that this could be a make or break budget with Peter McKay in the Mail asking: ‘Is George to toxic to survive the storm?’ He better have some good rabbits to pull out of his hat…

And away from the Westminster village and the impact of Con-Dem cuts on ordinary people continues to hit home. The Morning Star reports on country wide demonstrations against the bedroom tax over the weekend, the biggest marches were in Liverpool and Manchester and more are expected across the country on 30 March as people in London, Cardiff, Edinburgh and Glasgow stand up to the Con-Dem cuts. And those cuts are expected to drive ever higher numbers to food banks as the Indie notes that the full brunt of the coaltion’s reforms are only due to come in next month. That will also be when the top rate tax cuts releases £40,000 for every million earner in the country, a classic case of the Tories looking after their own...

And finally the fear has returned to the banking sector with the latest bail out in Cyprus causing a run on the banks. As part of the deal the government has agreed to charge a levy on all bank accounts in the area, now while that has the advantage of taking a sizeable chunk from rich Russian oligarchs that use the island as a safe haven it also means ordinary people lose one tenth of their savings, if anything will help crash an economy that will, looks like it will be a long time before the banking elite understands the true impact of cuts on ordinary people…

Morning Star

 Daily Mirror

  • Chancellor ‘magics’ up cash with OAP tweaks (p2)
  • Press deal? (p2)
  • New PCS strike (p2)





  • Cameron fails to keep enemies close (p1/4-5) [press regulation]
  • Savers frozen over Cyprus bail out (p1)
  • Osborne to win over elderly in budget (p2)
  • Cuts to force thousands to use food banks (p12)
  • Monday interview – Michael Grade (p20-21)
  • MPs breathe HMRC over phone calls (p24-25
  • £8 billion hole in public finances to embarrass Osborne (p47)
  • Bank safety rules are restricting lending and growth, say critics (p48)
  • Employ more women, industrial firms told (p49)



 FT (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • Osborne to admit fresh blow to debt target (p1)
  • Cyprus in emergency EU talks (p1)
  • Osborne aims to spur housebuilding (p2)
  • Miliband set to scrap strategy on Trident (p3) [wants cutback version]
  • Cameron seeks late Leveson deal (p4)
  • HSBC eyes further job cuts (p19)
  • Robust outlook for UK engineers (p24)

 Edited by Mik Sabiers

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