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Thursday newspaper round-up: Banks, GlaxoSmithKline, Young people

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06/02/2014
New York regulator demands documents from banks as Forex probe widens; GSK sales decline in China "starting to stabilise"; young people fared worst in recession.
Thursday newspaper round-up: Banks, GlaxoSmithKline, Young people

New York’s top banking regulator has demanded documents from more than a dozen banks, opening a new front in the sprawling global investigation into alleged foreign exchange manipulation. Ben Lawsky, superintendent of New York’s Department of Financial Services (DFS), sent requests to banks including Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, Lloyds, Royal Bank of Scotland, and Standard Chartered, one person familiar with the matter said. All the banks declined to comment on whether they had been contacted. – Financial Times

Shares in GlaxoSmithKline edged higher after the drugs giant said its sales decline was “starting to stabilise” in China, where the firm has been rocked by a damaging bribery and corruption scandal. Reporting 2013 results, GSK boss Sir Andrew Witty said sales of pharmaceuticals and vaccines had fallen another 29% in China during the fourth quarter to December. That compares with a 61% slump in the previous three months. – Daily Mail

Young people in Britain have borne the brunt of the financial crisis, with a larger proportion of 16- to 24-year-olds now out of work than any other age group. The unemployment rate among 16- to 17-year-olds is 35.9%, and 18% among 18- to 24-year-olds, according to the Office for National Statistics in its latest economic review. In contrast the rate falls to 4.7% among 35- to 49-year-olds, and 4.4% among 50- to 64-year-olds. – The Guardian

An ambitious $5bn plan to expand the Panama Canal and reshape the flow of world trade is at imminent risk of failure at the cost of 10,000 jobs and billions of dollars of upfront spending, the Spanish company leading the works has warned. The project to widen the 100-year-old canal that links the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, one of the biggest civil engineering operations in the world, is due to be completed next year but has been plagued by a long-running dispute around cost overruns. – The Times

Even as many high street banks are working out how to slim down or shut branches, a small Swedish lender has been opening outlets nationwide. Since December, Handelsbanken has opened ten branches, taking its total in Britain to 171. Four years ago, while the City was reeling in the immediate aftermath of the financial crisis, it had just over 60. – The Times

Twitter reported a big, increased loss in its first quarterly report since becoming a publicly traded company, as slow growth and heavy costs produced a mixed bag of results. Earnings came in significantly higher than expected, with revenue more than doubling, but Twitter shares, which have risen by nearly 150% since its public offering in November, fell by 17% in after-hours trading in New York to $54.76, reflecting disappointing growth in the numbers of its users. – The Times

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