News digest 18 October 2012

News digest 18 October 2012

18 October 2012

Just two days to go to the march for a future that works – join us on #oct20

The countdown to #oct20 continues and an eight page Unite/Daily Mirror future that works special tops today’s digest explaining why people will be marching against austerity and for an economic alternative this Saturday. Go out and buy your copy now. At yesterday’s PMQs prime minister David Cameron even namechecked the march for a future that works but generally had a torrid time even when trying to spin the positive unemployment figures. Although there was some good news in that unemployment figures fell once again by 50,000 to 2.53 million the devil is in the detail and the rise of part time workers that want full time jobs has combined with the continuing pressure of long term unemployment. Unite general secretary Len McCluskey said: “The UK is still in recession, so there is nothing for the government to crow about ... hidden behind the statistics is the stubborn underlying problem of the long-term unemployed, whether it is the 16-to-24 year olds or other groups seeking work. It is those areas that ministers need to concentrate on as a matter of urgency.” 

And Cameron did not get to crow about the economy at PMQs – despite trying – as in a forceful exchange Labour leader Ed Miliband put the prime minister on the back foot over the continuing plebgate furore following chief whip Andrew Mitchell’s rant at police officers, Miliband called Mitchell “toast” but it is Cameron whose fingers are being burned as the plebgate row rumbles on and on. And to make matters worse Cameron also cowered under pressure from Labour’s Chris Bryant who called on the prime minister to release all the email exchanges between himself and ex News International chief Rebekah Brooks; Cameron refused to even attempt to answer the question, perhaps he’s got something to hide? The truth will out in the end…

Cameron also tried to divert attention by announcing that the big six energy firms will have to offer consumers their cheapest tariff, however the policy was immediately thrown into confusion as critics said the plan would just see the firms scrap cheaper tariffs raising prices for all, sounds like a classic Cameron plan.

Still with the Con-Dems and the Mail reports that staff from payday loan firm Wonga have embroiled the Tories in a cash-for-access controversy at a so-called political ‘speed dating’ event held during the Tory conference.

And loans of another kind also feature on page 2 of the Mail as it reveals that Rolls-Royce yesterday launched a blistering attack on banks after it revealed it has been forced to lend to its own suppliers to keep them afloat. So much for the government making the banks lend, and it’s not just in industry as the Times reports that Asda has also taken control of three of its key suppliers as it looks to develop its own network. In France  the government has been forced to step in to protect the troubled carmaker Peugeot which was threatened with a credit rating downgrade, and this comes as EU ministers meet in Brussels to discuss the latest response to the ongoing eurozone debt crisis. Cameron flies in to find he is increasingly isolated according to Peter Mandelson in the Indie, and talking of flights there’s more on plans by Gatwick to expand, although London mayor Boris Johnson is not in favour and considering a legal challenge – probably as it would not be called after him -  and it adds more fuel to his plans to take over from Cameron as Tory party leader, if you thought Cameron was bad just imagine bungling Boris with his finger on the trigger…

Morning Star

 Daily Mirror




 Times (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • Households to be put on cheapest energy tariff (p1)
  • Doubts grow about Mitchell (p3)
  • More Scots back union (p8)
  • Gatwick’s £5 billion expansion plan (p11)
  • Jump in part-timers puts record 30 million in work (p15)
  • Kremlin oil giant poised to swallow BP’s Russian venture (p41)
  • France and Germany square up ahead of summit (p44)
  • Asda takes control of suppliers (p45)
  • Tucker urges decentralised banks (p47)
  • Spirits high as Diageo closes in on deal (p510



·         Hollande fires warning shot at Merkel over austerity on eve of EU summit (p1)

·         Unemployment figures: a reason to be cheerful, but only cautiously (p1)

·         Coalition's child poverty adviser: bring back EMA (p1)

·         Andrew Mitchell's grizzly experience (p2)

·         Self-employment: 'Success and failure is down to you' (p4)

·         Unemployment falls to 15-month low (p4)

·         Gatwick airport to push for second runway (p6)

·         Energy companies to be compelled to offer lowest tariff to customers (p7)

·         Six million workers could strike across UK (p12) – Unite cited

·         Prince Charles met Tessa Jowell to discuss gaps in public policy (p13)

·         Ken Clarke tells Leveson he supports statutory press regulation (p16)

·         Andrew Mitchell cuts forlorn figure as 'plebgate' row reignites at PMQs (p16)

·         David Miliband presses for public services reform (p16)

·         Obama returns to campaign trail lifted by debate showing against Romney (p20)

·         François Hollande: Look past austerity or risk falling out of love with Europe (p28)

·         Greece close to €31 billion bailout deal (p29)

·         Banks could have worst yet to come, warns Paul Tucker (p32)

·         Volcker says banking ringfence is flawed (p32)

·         RBS leaves asset protection scheme (p32)

·         Tesco to sell Fresh & Easy products in its UK stores (p32)

·         More than 30 chain stores closing a day (p33)

·         Multiple payday loan borrowers rise (p35)

·         Starbucks tax avoidance: HMRC to face parliamentary committees (p35)

·         Diageo sales up 5 per cent (p36)

·         The Treasury doesn't know best – David Miliband (p38)

·         Letters: People's petition against austerity (p41)


 FT (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • Rosneft aims for supermajor status (p1)
  • Retails chains close 20 stores a day (p1)
  • Vickers reforms attacked (p2)
  • Cameron ready to defend City from eurozone finance rules (p3)
  • Johnson threatens airport legal action (p3)
  • Part timers boost jobs figures (p4)
  • Mitchell likely to stay (p4)
  • Cameron comment sparks confusion in energy market (p4)
  • How much has austerity really cost Britain’s economy – Chris Giles (p13)
  • Paris steps in over Peugeot unit (p17)

Edited by Mik Sabiers

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