Carphone’s reputation takes a hit from £29m fine for mis-selling | Nils Pratley

Watchdog’s finding is a terrible blow for a business built on the idea that it’s the punter’s friendRemember those sunny days of 2014 when the managements of Dixons and Carphone Warehouse unveiled their “genuine” merger of equals? The fit was perfect, …

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Melrose’s GKN bid is getting disgracefully little political scrutiny | Nils Pratley

MPs ought to show an interest – GKN is an important UK company and the stakes are high

Tory MPs only seem to be interested in fighting and plotting over Brexit, but, if they could avert their gaze from Jacob Rees-Mogg temporarily, they’d find that the future of GKN is a subject worth debating. Melrose’s £7bn hostile bid has received disgracefully little political scrutiny.

Sir Vince Cable, for the Lib Dems, and a few Labour MPs are doing their best to generate interest, but they need help. Theresa May said in the Commons on Wednesday that the government “will be looking closely” at the proposed takeover, but she sounded as if she was ticking a box.

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Staley might be right: UK immigration policy could be key to City’s future | Nils Pratley

The ability to hire skilled staff from abroad must be protected, Barclays boss suggests, and the next government should take note

Those intrepid American adventurers heading to London to explore the drama and meaning of Brexit, courtesy of the New York Times at $6,000 a pop, should strike the Barclays AGM off their list of attractions. The chief executive, Jes Staley, between apologies for his “mistake” in trying to unmask a whistleblower, made leaving the EU sound like a stroll in the park, at least for Barclays.

Staley didn’t put it exactly like that, of course. But he did say that the complexity can’t be compared with other recent hassles, such as setting up an intermediate holding company in the US to comply with local regulations, or establishing a ringfence around the UK retail bank. “Any of the options we might need to pursue are by comparison straightforward, and significantly less costly,” he said.

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Staley might be right: UK immigration policy could be key to City’s future | Nils Pratley

The ability to hire skilled staff from abroad must be protected, Barclays boss suggests, and the next government should take note

Those intrepid American adventurers heading to London to explore the drama and meaning of Brexit, courtesy of the New York Times at $6,000 a pop, should strike the Barclays AGM off their list of attractions. The chief executive, Jes Staley, between apologies for his “mistake” in trying to unmask a whistleblower, made leaving the EU sound like a stroll in the park, at least for Barclays.

Staley didn’t put it exactly like that, of course. But he did say that the complexity can’t be compared with other recent hassles, such as setting up an intermediate holding company in the US to comply with local regulations, or establishing a ringfence around the UK retail bank. “Any of the options we might need to pursue are by comparison straightforward, and significantly less costly,” he said.

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TalkTalk hoping for rapid results as Dunstone gets his hands dirty

Investors should welcome Sir Charles’s decision to get more involved as chairman but there may be short-term financial pain

You can understand why Sir Charles Dunstone might think it a good idea to drop the non-executive lark and get busy as chairman of TalkTalk. In May 2015, his 31% stake was worth £1.17bn but now, after the plunge in the share price from 400p to 168p, the value has fallen to £500m. That is a strong incentive to spend less time on the yacht.

There is no suggestion that the departing chief executive, Dido Harding, is being pushed out against her will. She has done seven years in the post since TalkTalk demerged from Carphone Warehouse (total shareholder return for TalkTalk in that time, including dividends, has been 79%) and the pair were singing in harmony on Wednesday. Dunstone was lavish in his praise.

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1,200 business leaders back remain in EU referendum vote

The group, which included leaders of 50 of the FTSE 100, outlined their support for Britain in the EU in a letter to The Times

A late plea for voters to back the remain option in this week’s EU referendum has been issued by 1,285 business leaders who say in a letter to The Times that Brexit would damage Britain’s economy.

Smaller businesses and employers would be particularly vulnerable to any economic shock as a result of a leave vote, according to its signatories, who include the leaders of 50 of the FTSE 100 companies.

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