The Business Matrix: Monday 24 September 2012


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The Independent Online

BAE soothes US merger fears

A ring-fenced US defence company will be formed to soothe security fears at the Pentagon if the £28bn merger of BAE Systems and EADS goes ahead, it emerged yesterday. Defence contractor BAE's special security arrangement with the US allowed it to take a prominent role in projects such as the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, left.

Pensions black hole deepens

Pensions watchdogs face being overwhelmed by pleas from cash-strapped companies for more time to pay off ballooning pension funding black holes. The accountancy firm PricewaterhouseCoopers says the average time needed to fill a pension scheme's funding shortfall has soared to 11 years from just eight years a year ago.

'Privatisation' of defence arm nears

A major step in what critics claim is the privatisation of the Ministry of Defence's £14bn-budget equipment and support agency is due to be taken next month. The senior MoD official Bernard Gray is finalising a report expected to justify a greater role for the private sector.

Independent on Sunday

Goldman Sachs faces exodus

More than 100 of the investment banking giant Goldman Sachs' best-paid staff are thought to be set to leave under a management shake-up. A wave of retirements among veterans is expected after the long-serving chief financial officer, David Viniar, said he was preparing to step down.

Sunday Times

Tory donors' tax scheme foiled

Two Tory donors face an £11.5m bill after a tribunal ruled against a scheme to reduce tax liabilities. Jonathan Boyer and Nicholas Allan used a Cayman Islands-based employee benefit trust to receive cash from their hedge fund Boyer Allan.

Mail on Sunday

Crackdown on erring bankers

The Financial Services Authority is calling for tough new powers to tackle banking malpractice after the Libor-rigging scandal. It has called for "exemplary sanctions" and "forceful punishment" of bankers caught breaching regulations.

Sunday Telegraph

Dairy Crest still has the cream

Jefferies' analysts rate Dairy Crest a buy, ahead of its trading update today, and give its shares a price target of 400p, up from 370p. Its key food brands have maintained encouraging growth, but the milk business remains challenged, they say.

Compass heading for £1bn profit

Panmure Gordon analysts rate catering group Compass's stock a buy, and raised their share price target for the company from 785p to 820p ahead of its trading update on Thursday. The pre-tax profit consensus for the group is £1.089bn.