Saturday February 22, 2020

What Tuesday's papers say

Plans for major review of Garda; AIB 'anchor' shareholders considered; Tesla worth more than Ford

4th April, 2017
The main headlines from today's newspapers

IRISH TIMES

- The Irish Times says Tánaiste and Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald is to consider giving more powers to the Policing Authority and the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission as part of a root and branch review of the force. She is to outline the potential scope of an independent examination of the force at today's Cabinet meeting.

- The paper reports that there have been objections to a plan by Brown Table Solutions Ltd to convert Loreto Hall, a former "young ladies' hostel" on Dublin's St Stephen's Green, into a luxury hotel. Dublin City Council has written to the developers expressing concern about the height and scale of the plans.

- In business, the Irish Times says the special liquidators of Irish Bank Resolution Corporation are examining 29,000 mortgage customer accounts at the former Irish Nationwide Building Society to see if any have been denied a tracker rate over the past decade or so. The move is part of the Central Bank's review of tracker mortgages.

- The paper says Ireland may have to set up its own system to hold shares and bonds on behalf of investors for the purposes of settling trades after Brexit, as the current Crest system - operated by Euroclear UK & Ireland in London - is unlikely to be able to continue to operate in Ireland after Brexit.

FINANCIAL TIMES

- The Financial Times leads with yesterday's figures from the euro zone, which showed that more than one million people were lifted out of unemployment in the area during the past year, pushing the jobless rate to the lowest in almost eight years and underscoring how an economic recovery is gathering pace across the bloc.

- The FT says shares in British tech company Imagination Technologies plunged more than 60 per cent yesterday after Apple, its biggest customer, said it would not use the chip designer's technology in new products.

- In companies news, the paper says electric car maker Tesla has surpassed Ford in market value as investors look to a future beyond internal combustion engines. But analysts point out that this has been done on sales of only 76,000 cars last year, compared with Ford's 6.6 million, with one saying that the market treats Tesla as a tech, rather than an industrial, stock.

- The FT says Burberry has thrown in the towel on a four-year experiment to develop its fragrance and beauty business in-house, by franchising the operations to US group Coty.

IRISH INDEPENDENT

- The Irish Independent reports on a survey it has carried out which indicates that more than 90 TDs will be accepting a €2,700 a year boost to their pay packets this week under the Lansdowne Road agreement. Public Expenditure Minister Paschal Donohoe had asked ministers to voluntarily gift the money back to the state after huge controversy last October.

- The paper says it understands that the Government is to reduce the number of homes to be covered in the state-subsidised National Broadband Plan roll-out, after accepting a promise from Eir to build new connections to 300,000 rural homes.

- The Irish Independent says it has established that the Government is considering roping in a handful of blue-chip investors to anchor AIB's shareholder base when it sells €3 billion of shares in the summer, a move which could dampen volatility but could also lower the price for the state.

- The paper says Australian stationery chain Smiggle plans to open as many as 20 stores in Ireland over the next three years, with tis first coming next month at Dublin's Dundrum Shopping Centre.

IRISH EXAMINER

- The Irish Examiner also leads with plans for a root and branch review of An Garda Síochána, saying a panel of international experts will be sought after Frances Fitzgerald consults the opposition later this week. The paper says the review will focus on the force's structure and functions, rather than the faults of individuals.

- The paper reports on warnings from business leaders in Cork that shops are closing early, staff hours are being cut and jobs are on the line as the Bus Eireann strike drags on. Anecdotal reports suggest retail trade in Cork city centre is down by between 30 per cent and 50 per cent.

- In business, the Examiner reports that the Irish arm of American car rental giant Enterprise has bought Irish-owned Dooley Car Rentals - and has not ruled out further Irish acquisitions in the future.

- The paper reports on figures from the Society of the Irish Motor Industry, which show a 7.5 per cent drop in new car registrations in March compared with a year earlier. It quotes industry experts as saying that Brexit uncertainties have helped knock the still-fragile confidence of Irish consumers.

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