PRESS DIGEST – British business – Nov 3

The Daily Telegraph
TAKLTALK FACES OFCOM FINE OVER FAKE BILLS
TalkTalk (TALK.L: ) could be fined up to 139 million pounds by
regulator Ofcom for billing for services that customers had
cancelled and that were not provided.

CALL FOR INVESTORS TO BREAK GRIP OF BIG FOUR

Institutional investors should unite to force Britain’s
biggest companies to use mid-tier auditors and break the
dominance of the “Big Four” — KPMG [KPMG.UL], Deloitte
[DLTE.UL], Ernst & Young [ERNY.UL] and PricewaterhouseCoopers
[PWC.UL] — a parliamentary committee was told.

WESTFIELD SET FOR DEMERGER TO FOCUS ON UK

Westfield (WDC.AX: ), the world’s biggest shopping centre
owner, is set to announce the spin-off of its Australian assets
enabling the company to press on with its development plans in
the UK.

The Times

AVIVA CONSIDERS SALE OF ASIAN BUSINESSES

The chief executive of British insurer Aviva (AV.L: ) said the
company is considering selling its Asian businesses, which could
be worth 2.1 billion pounds, and that he is prepared to move out
of unprofitable regions.

ROYAL MAIL LETTER BUSINESS SLUMPS

Days after Business Secretary Vince Cable published plans
for privatising the state-controlled postal service, Royal Mail
reported a 70 percent drop in profits and said letter volumes
were down by a fifth in five years.

The Guardian

AUSTERITY CUTS WILL COST 1.6 MILLION JOBS, MPS WARNED

The coalition government’s deep public spending cuts will
cost more that 1.6 billion in jobs over the next five years,
with the private sector affected the most, new research has
shown.

BG GROUP BOOSTED BY UPGRADE TO BRAZILIAN RESERVES

BG Group (BG.L: ) buoyed investors yesterday with a surprise
upgrade in estimates for reserves in its Brazilian oil fields,
which could be worth an additional $4 billion to the British
exploration company.

(Summary compiled by Reuters)

PRESS DIGEST – British business – Nov 3