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Sunday newspaper round-up: The Very Group, Marks&Spencer, Rolls Royce

(Sharecast News) - The Barclay family has revived plans to list its e-commerce empire, The Very Group, during the middle of next year following a decision to postpone its plans in 2021 due to the worsening in market conditions. Very Group generated sales of £2.3bn in 2021 for pre-tax profits of £81.7m, making it one of the UK's largest retailers. The company had been on the auction block in 2017 but plans for a sale were jettisoned after potential private equity buyers balked at the £3bn price tag. - The Sunday Times

Marks&Spencer boss Steve Rowe lashed out at proposals to put in place an online sales tax, labelling them "morally bankrupt". Writing in the Mail on Sunday, Rowe conceded that there was a need for "urgent reform of an unfair and outdated" system that put bricks and mortar retailers at a competitive disadvantage. However, in his opinion "you cannot tax people back to shops". In particular, he criticised the fact that it would make consumers pay more for essential goods. - Financial Mail on Sunday

Auditor KPMG is set to be hit with another fine over its failings in work for aerospace engineer Rolls Royce. According to Sky News, the Financial Reporting Council might be set levy the £4.5m fine as soon as during the coming week. That would follow the £14.4m penalty slapped on the firm this same month on account of its work for outsourcers Carillion and Regenersis alongside three other such penalties during the past year. - Financial Mail on Sunday

The creation of distinct geopolitical blocks in the aftermath of Russia's invasion of Ukraine could deepen economic misery in the world. Ahead of the World Economic Forum in Davos, International Monetary Fund head, Kristalina Georgieva, said people in both poor and rich countries would lose if decades of globalisation came undone. Georgieva thus spoke of the largest test for the global economy since the Second World War. She referred to a confluence of calamities that included high food and energy prices, tighter financial conditions, disruptions to supply chains and the threat from climate change. - Sunday Telegraph

The extraordinarily high fuel bills which Britons are facing will last at least another 18 months, the boss of E.ON UK, the country's largest energy supplier, said. That prompted Michael Lewis to call on the government to intervene "very substantially" to help people facing escalating fuel bills. According to the executive, bills could hit £3,000 when the price cap was lifted in October, leaving one in five customers struggling to pay. Lewis added that of E.ON's 8m accounts, 1m were already in arrears and the outfit expected that number to rise by half. - Guardian

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Sunday newspaper round-up: Middle East, Aston Martin, Defence
(Sharecast News) - Britons must accept that their country was now involved in the Middle East conflict, Tobias Ellwood said. The former defence minister warned that "nobody was in full control" of the growing conflict as more and more countries were sucked in. Ellwood also said that Tehran's strike had taken the conflict into a "new dangerous territory". - Sunday Telegraph
Friday newspaper round-up: Everton, AstraZeneca, Amazon
(Sharecast News) - Everton has paid about £30m in interest charges to an opaque lender associated with a tax exile, corporate records suggest. The charges appear to have reached about £438,000 a week, according to the troubled Premier League club's most recent set of accounts, a figure more than three times the reported wages of the Everton and England goalkeeper Jordan Pickford. - Guardian
Thursday newspaper round-up: Border controls, McKinsey, KPMG
(Sharecast News) - New post-Brexit UK border controls coming into force later this month will cost British businesses £2bn and fuel higher inflation, according to a report warning that UK-EU trade will be damaged as a result. With less than a month before the introduction of new checks on animal and plant products from 30 April, the insurer Allianz Trade said the controls agreed under Boris Johnson's Brexit deal could add 10% to import costs over the first year. - Guardian
Wednesday newspaper round-up: Shoplifting, EnQuest, Klarna
(Sharecast News) - The government is investing more than £55m in expanding facial recognition systems - including vans that will scan crowded high streets - as part of a renewed crackdown on shoplifting. The scheme was announced alongside plans for tougher punishments for serial or abusive shoplifters in England and Wales, including being forced to wear a tag to ensure they do not revisit the scene of their crime, under a new standalone criminal offence of assaulting a retail worker. - Guardian

Important information: This information is not a personal recommendation for any particular investment. If you are unsure about the suitability of an investment you should speak to one of Fidelity’s advisers or an authorised financial adviser of your choice. When you are thinking about investing in shares, it’s generally a good idea to consider holding them alongside other investments in a diversified portfolio of assets. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future returns.

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