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Sunday newspaper round-up: SVB, Melrose, Tesco

By Alexander Bueso

Date: Sunday 12 Mar 2023

Sunday newspaper round-up: SVB, Melrose, Tesco

(Sharecast News) - Silicon Valley Bank's demise does not pose a systemic risk to the UK's financial services sector, Rishi Sunak said on Sunday, even as he committed himself to finding a way to keep hundreds of UK tech outfits from going bust. The US lender was believed to have "several thousand" business customers in the UK, many of which relied on their deposits at SVB to pay staff and suppliers. Ministers' concern was that many of those businesses might go under lest some sort of bail out could be thrashed out, inflicting serious harm on the country's technology sector. The Prime Minister added that the Treasury was working at pace to find a solution that would provide operational liquidity for people's cash flow needs. - The Sunday Times

The head of the US Treasury, Janet Yellen, dismissed the possibility of a bailout for Silicon Valley Bank. However, she added that the Biden administration was working with regulators to help depositors hit by the lender's collapse. Yellen said the situation was not on the scale of the 2008 financial crisis, telling broadcaster CBS's Face the Nation that "Americans can have confidence in the safety and soundness of our banking system". Citing anonymous sources, Reuters reported that the US government was expected to make a "material" announcement concerning plans to shore up SVB deposits and thus prevent a wider fallout. - Guardian

Melrose's top bosses stand to pocket millions when the engineering outfit spins off its automotive unit in April. That will leave the restructuring specialist free to focus on its aerospace business. The auto unit, which would be renamed Dowlais, was set to be floated on the London Stock Exchange in 2023 and was expected to fetch a valuation of approximately £4bn. Melrose boss Simon Peckham was expected to get £12m-worth of shares in Dowlais while finance director Geoffrey Martin stood was in line to receive stock worth £8m. - Financial Mail on Sunday

Tough new fees imposed by Tesco on produce sold via its website could push suppliers and farmers into bankruptcy. The warning from businesses followed Tesco's announcement during the previous week that suppliers would be asked to shoulder new Amazon-style 'fulfilment fees' for each item sold vi its app. However, the grocer had since said the amount of the fees were up for negotiation. It also came amid accusations from British farmers that grocers were to blame for vegetable shortages because they had not raised prices. - The Sunday Times

Trading in one of the world's most popular cryptocurrencies was blocked after its parent company, Circle Internet Financial, disclosed that $3.3bn (£2.7bn) of its reserves had been trapped at troubled lender Silicon Valley Bank. The resulting run on the firm's virtual currency, USD Coin, the second largest so-called "stablecoin" in the world, saw it drop from its $1 peg. On Saturday morning it fell below 87 cents but later rebounded to 91 cents. A quarter of USD Coin's reserves were held in cash with six lenders, SVB being one of them, and the remainder in short-dated US Treasury securities. - The Sunday Telegraph


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