Sunday newspaper round-up: Bovis Homes, Vodafone, HSBC

By Alexander Bueso

Date: Sunday 12 Mar 2017

Sunday newspaper round-up: Bovis Homes, Vodafone, HSBC

(ShareCast News) - Troubled builder Bovis Homes is in talks with rival construction firm Galliford Try over a merger that would create one of Britain's biggest housebuilders. Bovis, which has recently come under fire for the quality of its newbuild homes, was forced to confirm over the weekend that it had received takeover approaches from both Galliford and another housebuilder, Redrow. - The Guardian

Vodafone is closing in on a £21bn deal to merge its Indian operation with rival mobile operator Idea, going into business with the powerful Birla dynasty. City sources said talks had reached an advanced stage and that an agreement could be announced this week. Delays in what has proven a complicated and delicate negotiation for Vodafone remain possible, however. - The Sunday Telegraph

HSBC's long-running hunt for a new chairman is coming to an end, with the former boss of Prudential, Mark Tucker, set to sign a contract with the bank within the next few days. Tucker, 59, has already been approved for the role by the Financial Conduct Authority, according to City sources. He will resign from his role as chief executive of the Asian insurance giant AIA in order to take up the job in London. - The Sunday Times

BP is preparing to slash long-term bonuses for boss Bob Dudley and other senior directors in an effort to avoid a repeat of last year's embarrassing shareholder revolt. Investors want sweeping changes to the oil giant's executive pay plan, which has delivered $69m (£57m) in salary, bonuses, pension top-ups and other perks to its American chief executive over the past five years. BP is one of a slew of FTSE 100 companies putting remuneration policy to a binding shareholder vote this year. Institutional investors, including the US fund giant BlackRock, are determined to rein in excess in British boardrooms. - The Sunday Times

A majority of older voters would reject Scottish independence in a second referendum, a new poll suggests. Support for staying part of the United Kingdom stands at 70 per cent among the over 60s, with 30 per cent backing independence, the Survation poll for the Sunday Post newspaper found. The survey contrasts with an Ipsos MORI poll for STV published last week, which found that Scots are split 50/50 on the issue. - The Scotsman

The Bank of England will keep interest rates firmly on hold this week as policymakers remain in wait and see mode as Britain prepares for divorce with the EU, economists predict. The Government could trigger Article 50 as early as Tuesday and economists believe the Bank's Monetary Policy Committee will unanimously vote to hold rates at 0.25% two days later in the face of potential economic upset from Brexit negotiations. - Mail on Sunday

The foreign secretary has said there is "plenty of evidence" that Russia has the ability to disrupt British politics with cyber-attacks following reports that intelligence officials are to brief political parties on how to defend against hacking from Moscow. Boris Johnson, due to meet his Russian counterpart in the coming weeks, said there was no doubt Moscow had been up to "all sorts of dirty tricks" in relation to political interference. - The Guardian

Singapore's sovereign wealth fund is considering making a £10.6bn takeover bid for Logicor, one of Amazon's biggest landlords. In a move that would disrupt a planned float of the business, GIC and other state-backed investors including China Investment Corporation (CIC) are weighing possible offers, according to City sources. - The Sunday Times


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