Morning papers: Osborne urged to start Lloyds share sale

Lloyds is healthy enough to return to private hands, the chancellor has been told, paving the way for a share sale that could be kicked off within days, reports the Daily Mail.

UKFI, which manages the taxpayers’ stake in bailed out banks Lloyds and RBS, is understood to have indicated to George Osborne that conditions have never been better for a share placing. The organisation is yet to make a formal recommendation to the chancellor, which it would have to do before he can give his blessing for a share sale to start.

Factory output rise of 1.9% brings hope to manufacturing sector

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The UK’s factories are boosting their output sharply amid signs that the pickup in the economy is spreading to the recession-battered manufacturing sector, reports the Guardian.

After falling in April and May, an across-the-board expansion led by the transport sector – including a buoyant automotive industry – saw production rise by 1.9% in June.

UK economic recovery gains pace in July, says NIESR

The UK’s economic recovery gained pace in July, according to leading think-tank NIESR, as it judged that growth picked up to 0.7 per cent in the last three months, reports the Daily Telegraph.

The UK’s gross domestic product grew by 0.7 per cent in the three months to the end of July, according to the National Institute of Economic and Social Research, offering the latest evidence that the recovery is gaining strength.

Bone idle advisers dump hundreds of millions of pounds in off-the-peg funds

Lazy middlemen are dumping hundreds of millions of pounds of investors’ cash into pricey, off-the-peg investments instead of giving customers an individually tailored savings plan, reports the Daily Mail.

The paper cites analysis of industry figures as revealing that many financial advisers are picking ready-made portfolios - including multi-manager funds. The paper also claims these investors end up paying an average £175 an hour for “supposedly specialist expertise”.

Green shoots in sight amid Italy’s recession

Italy’s second quarter output was reported on Tuesday to have fallen by a smaller than expected 0.2 per cent, providing more tentative evidence that its longest postwar recession is bottoming out, reports the Financial Times.

IMF crosses swords with Germany over crisis handling

The IMF has exhorted Germany to stop dragging its feet on eurozone crisis measures, refuting claims that austerity is working and that Europe is on the road to recovery, reports the Daily Telegraph.

The IMF said Germany’s vast trade surplus must be slashed in half to rectify the eurozone’s north-south imbalances, and warned that fiscal overkill could abort recovery and set off an eurozone-wide chain reaction.

Northern Rock ‘bad bank’ repays £1.9bn to taxpayer

The bad bank behind failed lenders Northern Rock and Bradford & Bingley paid another £1.9bn to taxpayers in the first half of the year and saw a sharp fall in non-performing loans, reports the Daily Telegraph.