Morning papers: Inflation to outpace pay for fourth year

Britain faces a record fourth year in which earnings lag behind price rises, reports the Daily Mail.

Figures this week are set to show that the headline rate of inflation has climbed to 2.8 per cent, thanks to upward pressure on energy and food costs plus dearer public transport.

And economists predict that the rate of increase of the consumer prices index could peak at three per cent or more in the coming months.

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Labour seeks end to corporate tax secrecy

Labour has vowed to end the “tax secrecy” enjoyed by large multinational companies as it launches a consultation to explore ways to force greater transparency on to corporate world, reports the Financial Times.

The move comes weeks after Starbucks voluntarily agreed to give £20m to the Exchequer over two years after it emerged it had paid only £8.6m corporation tax in the 14 years it has been in the UK.

City sackings soar as FSA cracks down

Sackings and suspensions hit a five-year high in the City last year, as the financial crisis continued to take its toll on employment amid a clampdown on wrongdoing by the regulator, reports the Independent.

A total of 1,373 City staff were suspended or dismissed last year, which represents a 56 per cent jump on the year before, as the FSA stepped up its campaign against white-collar crime.

Lloyds sacks two over ‘rogue trader’ scam

Lloyds Banking Group has fired a “rogue trader” after the state-backed lender uncovered a scheme designed to inflate the bonus of the executive working in its investment banking arm, reports the Daily Telegraph.

The “irregular” trades were discovered in 2011 in a portfolio of complex financial products that have lost Lloyds, which is 41 per cent owned by the taxpayer, £37m in the past two years.

FTSE 100 chiefs offer best investor value

Chief executives of large companies deliver far greater value to shareholders than those at smaller groups, according to research published on Monday, reports the Financial Times.

The best performers are Peter Voser of Royal Dutch Shell, Stuart Gulliver of HSBC, Sir Andrew Witty of GlaxoSmithKline, Vittorio Colao, of Vodafone, and Octavio Alvidrez of Fresnillo, all FTSE 100 bosses.

The worst performers are mainly from companies in the FTSE 250, such as Lonmin’s Ian Farmer, who announced his resignation from the mining company in December, according to pay advisory firm Patterson Associates.

Flat-rate state pension branded a con trick by OAP group

The government will on Monday unveil a new flat-rate state pension worth £144 a week with a pledge to end the “shameful situation” in which women who take time out to care for their children suffer in retirement, reports the Guardian.

But the government announcement, due to be unveiled in a white paper, was immediately condemned by the National Pensioners Convention as a “con trick” for future generations.

EU redrafts plan for bank rescue funding