InvestmentsMay 29 2013

Morning papers: US housing lift could crimp Fed buying

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ByMatthew Jeynes

The largest rise in house prices for seven years and a surge in consumer confidence have added to a fast-improving US economic outlook, increasing the chances the Federal Reserve will slow its $85bn-a-month in asset purchases, reports the Financial Times.

House prices jumped 10.9 per cent in March from last year’s levels, the biggest increase since the height of the housing boom in 2006, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller index. The rise in prices for homes and other assets helped push the Conference Board’s index of consumer confidence to its strongest level for five years.

Paid for current accounts may be next scandal, watchdog warns

Paid-for currents accounts could become the next bank mis-selling scandal as increasing numbers of customers complain that they cannot use the advertised perks, the financial watchdog warns, reports the Daily Telegraph.

The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) has received a record number of complaints from people unhappy with the accounts offered by major high street banks after discovering that the included insurance deals were unsuitable.

EU eases hard line on austerity

Brussels will on Wednesday give its clearest signal yet that it is moving away from a crisis response based on austerity, allowing three of the EU’s five largest economies to overshoot budget deficit limits and pushing instead for broader reform, reports the Financial Times.

In its annual verdict on national budgets of all 27 EU members France, Spain and the Netherlands will be given a waiver on the annual 3 per cent deficit limit. Brussels will also free Italy from intensive fiscal monitoring despite its new prime minister’s decision to reverse a series of tax increases imposed by his predecessor.

Overseas listings head to London as markets soar

Al Noor Hospitals, Abu Dhabi’s largest medical care provider, is set to list on the London Stock Exchange in the latest sign that the City’s IPO market is in rude health, reports the Independent.

The company said it hopes to raise $150m (£99m) from the listing, which is likely to value it at up to $1bn. Al Noor will float up to 45 per cent of its shares and use the proceeds to finance acquisitions.

OECD under pressure to devise new corporate tax regime

The pressure is on OECD secretary-general Angel Gurría to formulate a taxpayers’ charter that resolves the current disputes over corporation tax payments, reports the Guardian.

The Paris-based thinktank has accepted various duties over the years, and co-ordinating international tax agreements is one of them.