Newsround: what Wednesday's papers say
Bus Éireann told to axe intercity routes and Foster's offer of talks unlikely to stop "brutal" election
The top stories in Wednesday's newspapers:
THE IRISH TIMES
- The prospect of avoiding imminent and "brutal" Northern Assembly elections appeared remote last night despite DUP leader Arlene Foster saying she is open to talks with Sinn Féin to prevent the collapse of Stormont, the paper reports on its front page.
- It also reports on the perilous financial position of Bus Éireann, saying external consultants have advised that closing down the company's Expressway network of intercity services may be the only viable option for dealing with the situation. The consultants also say that severance payments for staff could cost Bus Éireann up to €85 million.
- In a bid to address the rising cost of motor insurance, the government is to establish a new database to allow insurance companies to share details of motor claims. It will also set up a new personal injuries commission to examine the level of payouts for minor injuries in different jurisdictions.
- In its business section, the paper reports that Irish Life Investment Managers has received more than 50 inquiries from companies considering relocating activities from the UK following the Brexit vote last June.
- City of London bosses have called for a three-year delay to full Brexit to let companies adjust to new trading arrangements between the UK and EU and to avoid the risk of systemic crisis in the multi-trillion dollar derivatives market.
- The paper's front page also reports that Volkswagen announced last night that it was in advanced talks to pay $4.3 billion in penalties and plead guilty to criminal charges to settle with the US Department of Justice over the German carmaker's diesel emissions scandal.
- Fifa is to expand the World Cup to take in 48 teams, from its current 32, as football's global governing body pursues nearly $1 billion extra revenue. The expansion of the tournament will begin in 2026.
- Germany's biggest bank, Deutsche Bank, has launched a programme to monitor the online activity of university students and to identify those who might be a good fit for the bank but who would be unlikely to apply for a job through traditional channels such as on-campus recruitment drives.
- The paper also takes Bus Éireann as its lead story, reporting that the consultants' report has advised that axing the Expressway service would be the most viable option and warned that it faces "excessive" severance packages of more than €500,000.
- The 2017 BT Young Scientist Exhibition, which received a record-breaking 2,091 ideas and innovations from more than 4,500 students across the island, was launched at the RDS last night.
- Taoiseach Enda Kenny and UK prime minister Theresa May last night vowed to work closely to resolve the crisis in the North before an election is due to be called next week.
- Residents of The Strand apartment block in Co Limerick have vowed to fight back against a vulture fund's demand that their homes be sold.
- The paper leads with the cost of motor insurance, reporting that premiums jumped by 38 per cent in the first half of last year while the government has admitted it is powerless to stop the increases.
- Gardaí are investigating the distribution of suspected hate leaflets in a Roscommon town due to take in 80 Syrian refugees although officers suspect a lone individual, rather than a group, was involved in dispersing the leaflets through letterboxes in Ballaghderreen.
- US President Barack Obama returned to Chicago last night for one final speech, issuing a parting plea to Americans not to lose faith in their future no matter what they think about their next president.
- In its business section, the paper reports that Riverdance clocked up touring revenues of €19.4 million as the entertainment phenomenon showed no sign of losing any of worldwide appeal.