Sainsbury’s £1bn reveal is unlikely to move the competition authority | Nils Pratley

The supermarket’s merger with Asda would permanently reshape the UK grocery marketSainsbury’s pitch to the Competition and Markets Authority didn’t work the first time, so here comes chief executive Mike Coupe with another plea. His big reveal was a fi…

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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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Carillion shareholders considered suing after profit warning

Major investor Kiltearn has sent evidence to committees holding inquiry into contractor’s collapse

A major investment firm that owned 10% of Carillion has told MPs it considered suing the the collapsed government contractor over suspicions that directors knew it was in difficulty earlier than they admitted in public.

Kiltearn Partners says it “considered participation in civil legal action against Carillion with a view to recovering a proportion of its clients’ crystallised losses” following its profits warning last summer.

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Standard Life Aberdeen hit by Lloyds axing £109bn asset deal

SLA share price dips as bank serves notice to terminate deal in 12 months

Standard Life Aberdeen has been served notice by Lloyds Banking Group and Scottish Widows on a £109bn asset management deal, further denting shares in the recently merged group.

Clients have pulled billions of pounds in assets from SLA in the six months since Standard Life and Aberdeen Asset Management formed one of Britain’s biggest asset managers.

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Gloom for Asda as it posts worst results this century

The supermarket chain swapped one Clarke for another – but in a tough market there’s little improvement to be seen

Eggs from a Dutch farm involved in a contamination scare have found their way on to some UK supermarket shelves, it would appear. If Asda workers find any of the offending items in the stockroom, they may just feel tempted to hurl them in the direction of their bosses.

The struggling supermarket chain has begun a consultation with more than 3,000 staff over possible redundancies or a dramatic reduction in working hours.

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Bank of England deputy’s Brexit warning is strong stuff | Nils Pratley

Sam Woods has spelled out clearly why a transition period is needed for financial services – and showed it would make the process cheaper

Sam Woods isn’t beating about the bush. The deputy governor of the Bank of England and head of the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) says practical complexities arising from Brexit pose “a material risk to our objectives” and “we may have to make some difficult prioritisation decisions”.

This is strong stuff. Central bankers tends to prefer qualification and nuance. Woods couldn’t be clearer in describing why a transition period is needed to make the Brexit process orderly, at least in financial services.

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Sports Direct loses biggest independent investor as crisis deepens

Standard Life offloads entire 5.8% holding and Aviva sells down stake amid concerns over corporate governance issues

Sports Direct has lost its biggest independent investor as some fund managers fear the crisis-hit retailer is incapable of addressing its corporate governance issues.

The Guardian has learned Standard Life, the largest independent investor at last year’s annual meeting, has bailed out of the stock, selling its entire 5.8% holding, and Aviva said it had sold down its stake.

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Standard Life and Aberdeen merger likely to mean 10% job losses

Eight-hundred posts to be axed within three years of £11bn deal set to be completed by mid-August

Standard Life and Aberdeen Asset Management expect to cut 800 jobs, nearly 10% of the firms’ total workforce, within three years of their looming merger, Standard Life said after announcing on Tuesday that the combined group will be named Standard Life Aberdeen.

The Scottish companies agreed in March on an £11bn ($14.2bn) all-share deal they said is expected to bring £200m in annual cost savings.

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If Barclays CEO is shown the door, let it be for the right reason | Nils Pratley

Jes Staley deserves criticism over the whistleblower affair – but is now being unfairly kicked by hedge fund KKR

If Jes Staley, chief executive of Barclays, ends up losing his job over the whistleblower affair, he’ll deserve no sympathy. In the post-crisis era, attempting to unmask a whistleblower is a serious offence for a bank boss.

It doesn’t matter if Staley thought the informant was making an unfounded and malicious attack on Tim Main, a recent senior recruit to Barclays’ investment bank. The critical thing is for the chief executive to respect the whistleblowing process by staying out of it. It is staggering that Staley, whether he was badly advised or not, could have made such a mistake. The regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority, is investigating and its judgment is keenly awaited.

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What next for Next? Decline, if it comes, should still be profitable | Nils Pratley

Despite a near-halving in retailer’s stock market value over 16 months, are its current troubles really severe?

Panic over for Next shareholders? It’s too soon to sound the all-clear since a steeper decline in profits than last year’s 4% fall to £790m is very possible this time. Chief executive Lord Wolfson also has a longer list of grumbles than usual: inflation, currencies, the squeeze on real incomes and consumers’ new love of entertainment over “stuff”.

For the time being, he won’t risk a penny of shareholders’ funds on share buy-backs in case the retailing weather turns nastier.

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