BNP Paribas profits drop 45 per cent as investment banking revenues slide (FT )
Profits at BNP Paribas dropped 45 per cent in the first three months of the year after investment banking revenues fell sharply.
France’s largest bank by assets and revenues reported a net income of €1.58bn in the first quarter, beating the average expectation of €1.53bn in an analyst poll by Thomson Reuters.
Verizon warns of ‘lean’ year for dividends from US wireless business (FT )
Verizon has warned it could be a “lean” year for dividends from the US wireless business it jointly owns with Vodafone.
Verizon Communications and Vodafone have taken out $18.5bn in dividends since 2011 from Verizon Wireless, the country’s largest mobile operator by subscribers, but Verizon’s latest comments raise new fears that future payouts from the highly profitable US operator would be more limited.
RBS 'ready to privatise in a year' (BBC )
The chairman of Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), Sir Philip Hampton, has said the bank will be ready to return to the private sector next year.
In a video statement posted on the bank's website, Sir Philip said he expected the government to start selling shares from the middle of 2014.
Minimum pricing: Challenge to Scottish alcohol legislation fails (BBC )
A legal challenge to the Scottish government's plans to introduce minimum pricing per unit of alcohol has failed.
The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) took action against the proposal, which it said would breach European law, after it was passed by MSPs.
US unemployment hits four-year low (Telegraph )
The better-than-expected figure is a welcome surprise, as was the revision of previous month's figures, which will help to ease fears of a sharp slowdown in the economy.
March's payrolls were raised to 138,000, 50,000 more jobs than previously reported, and February's job count was revised up to 332,000, the largest since May 2010.