Credit crisis diary: 04/03/2009

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The Independent Online

BP prepares to head for Hollywood

Is the Slumdog Millionaire feel-good factor getting you down?

Is The Wrestler just too much Mickey Rourke? Fear not. April sees the cinema sensation of 2009 hit the silver screen: an 80-minute documentary on the history of BP. Providing a touch of stardust is director Nigel Williams, last heard of as the producer of an Elizabeth I mini-series with Helen Mirren in 2005. Tony Hayward, BP's chief executive – with just a touch of hubris – says the film is no marketing puff, but a "warts and all" history of the company that also happens to be "the history of the 20th century". Presumably that history includes the scandal-dogged departure of his predecessor, Lord Browne?



Kingman showing signs of wear and tear

The implosion of the financial system has taken its toll on John Kingman, right, the 38-year old Treasury high-flyer appointed last year to run UK Financial Investments. Mr Kingman has been folically challenged for several years now, but seems to be losing more hair by the day. Appearing in front of the Treasury Select Committee yesterday, there was barely anything left up top.



Lloyds sticks to a strict door policy

Lloyds Bank chief executive Eric Daniels is running out of patience with members of the press – and there's no shortage of them – who dare to criticise the deal he did with HBOS last year. So enraged was the bank by a series of pieces penned by Scotsman City editor Martin Flanagan that it refused to invite him to its results press conference last week. Mr Flanagan turned up anyway, and was politely but firmly told to sling his hook.



Rio pulls the plug after 20 years

Bad news for journalists hoping for a windfall this year. Mining giant Rio Tinto has, after 20 years, decided to scrap the David Watt Prize, awarded annually for "outstanding contributions towards the clarification of political issues". Rio says it can't justify sponsoring the award, established in memory of the writer David Watt, in the current economic climate. So no £10,000 prize for anyone in 2009, sadly.



The BBC gets there, four days late

Well done to the BBC's business website for yesterday rushing out the news that Sir Fred Goodwin's annual pension is £703,000, not £693,000 as originally reported. It almost makes up for the fact that the BBC religiously reported the pension as £650,000 for days on end last week, despite RBS publishing the real figures.

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