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PRESS DIGEST- British Business - Feb 1

Feb 1 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories on the business pages of British newspapers. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.



The Times


- Investors fear that the Co-operative Bank may be forced to wind down, leaving bondholders with heavy losses. The price of its most risky bonds has fallen as much as 30 per cent this week, with some trading as low as 57 pence in the pound, after the bank's admission that its capital strength would be weaker than expected. http://bit.ly/2jT9H4J


- The UK economy will grow at a faster rate than that of the Eurozone and will be beaten only by the United States out of the G7 nations this year, 18 months after the vote to leave the European Union, the National Institute of Economic and Social Research has predicted. http://bit.ly/2jTd5fH



The Guardian


- Shell has sold a large part of its North Sea oil fields for $3.8 billion to a company headed by Linda Cook, who left the Anglo-Dutch group more than seven years ago. The assets sold by Shell accounted for more than half of the company's North Sea oil production last year. http://bit.ly/2jTaH8B


- Christine Hohmann-Dennhardt, the former judge brought in to shake up Volkswagen's compliance and culture after it was struck by a diesel emissions scandal, is to receive a payoff of more than 10 million euros ($10.79 million), despite working for the German carmaker for just 13 months. http://bit.ly/2jTqrbJ




The Telegraph


- Discovery, the U.S. media giant behind Eurosport and TLC, has reached a truce with Sky after threatening to pull its 12 channels from Sky in a bitter row over fees. With little more than four hours before the deadline, Discovery announced that an agreement had been reached. http://bit.ly/2jTgxXM


- Arqiva's owners, a consortium including the Australian investment bank Macquarie and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, are understood to be putting it up for sale with a price tag of between 5 billion and 6 billion pounds ($7.55 billion). http://bit.ly/2jTgDOU




Sky News


- Brendan Barber, the former head of the TUC, is to join the board of BT's infrastructure division amid ongoing pressure from rivals and the industry regulator to formally separate it from the FTSE-100 telecoms group. http://bit.ly/2jTbpTk


- Two of the 'big six' energy companies in the UK could be set to start rewarding customers who stick with them rather than switching providers for better deals. In a hearing of the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee on Tuesday, both Npower and EDF Energy said they were looking into beginning reward schemes for those customers on higher tariffs. http://bit.ly/2jTeB1C




The Independent


- Apple has missed the deadline to pay 13 billion euros it owes to the Irish government in tax benefits, the European Union's competition commissioner said on Tuesday. European authorities have accused Ireland of helping Apple to avoid paying to pay high taxes by means of a so-called "sweetheart deal" that is in breach of EU rules. http://ind.pn/2jTchr4

($1 = 0.9267 euros) ($1 = 0.7952 pounds) (Compiled by Sangameswaran S in Bengaluru; Editing by Sandra Maler)