Morning papers: Merkel pledges no new haircut

German chancellor Angela Merkel yesterday lashed out at the idea that Greece could be granted another haircut on its debts, while playing down the prospect of a third bailout for the indebted Mediterranean state, reports City AM

Ms Merkel was speaking in Germany on the day that the European Central Bank (ECB) visited Athens to check up on Greece’s bailout progress. The ECB’s trip was overshadowed by leaders from Brussels and Germany seeking to play down fears that the troubled Mediterranean state could need a third rescue package.

Indian rupee sinks to fresh record low

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The Indian rupee fell below Rs65 to the US dollar on Thursday, extending a run of record lows as new government policy measures failed to improve investor sentiment in Asia’s third-largest economy, reports the Financial Times.

The Reserve Bank of India has announced a series of new measures aimed at stemming the rupee’s decline, but restrictive capital controls announced last week have been taken as a signal of desperation.

Banks face £1.5bn bill for role in CPP mis-selling scandal

Big banks will be handed a bill of as much as £1.5bn today to compensate hundreds of thousands of customers who were mis-sold identify theft and card insurance from CPP, reports The Times.

The lenders, which include leading high street names such as Royal Bank of Scotland and Barclays, were business partners of CPP, the York-based group that will also be ordered to compensate customers.

Worst UK pension providers named

Britain’s worst pension providers have been named for the first time in official tables that reveal how some insurers are paying annuities 30 per cent below the best deals on the market, reports the Guardian.

Scottish Widows and Clerical Medical, part of the government-backed Lloyds Banking Group, have emerged as the worst providers of retirement incomes for the mainstream market. The insurers pay an annuity (a guaranteed annual income in retirement) of £839 a year on a savings pot of £18,000, compared to £1,099 at the best payer, Reliance Mutual.

Insurers brace for flood of fresh claims

A string of catastrophes during the first half of the year cost insurers $20bn (£12.8bn) worldwide in claims payouts, according to the latest estimates, reports The Times.

Torrential floods, including those that devastated Central and Eastern Europe in June, accounted for $8bn of the claims losses, the Sigma research organisation said yesterday.

UK government borrowing rises unexpectedly in July

The Treasury ran up a rare July deficit last month, raising doubts about the coalition’s progress in tackling the black hole in Britain’s public finances, reports the Guardian.

July traditionally sees a surplus as it is a strong month for tax receipts, with quarterly corporation tax payments due. But the Office for National Statistics said the government had to borrow £100m last month, compared with the £800m surplus it ran up in the same month last year.