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05 Apr 2020 | 20:39

Sunday newspaper round-up: Next, Water giants, NMC Health

(Sharecast News) - Fashion retailers and their suppliers are braced for a massive shake-out of the industry as an estimated £10bn of clothing piles up in warehouses during the coronavirus lockdown. Retail insiders said major firms including Primark, Peacocks, Arcadia and Next had all stopped taking deliveries to their warehouses because they had no more room. Numerous poorer performing retailers, including Debenhams and vintage-inspired retailer Cath Kidston, are on the verge of collapse. - Guardian

Water giants have called on the industry watchdog for support as customers default on their bills. They have joined power utilities in asking for a financial bailout, and want leniency on leak targets, amid a rising tide of cash-strapped households and businesses cancelling direct debits or defaulting on bills. - Sunday Times

The scandal-hit FTSE 100 hospitals group NMC Health faces collapse after one of its lenders said it was pushing to appoint administrators. Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, which has lent NMC £792m, said it had "failed to respond" to requests for improved governance in the wake of multiple scandals. It has made a court application to appoint administrators to take control and launch an investigation. - Sunday Times

The Treasury is preparing contingency plans to take emergency stakes in companies threatened with collapse by the coronavirus. It is understood that it has approached a City figure who has worked for the Government before to lead a "bailout taskforce" which would inject vital funds into potential corporate casualties in return for equity stakes. A senior City source said: "This is work all night, sophisticated stuff, and as and when it moves it will have to move incredibly quickly. In three or four weeks' time they will be deluged." - Sunday Telegraph

More UK phone masts have been attacked following a series of arson incidents linked to false claims that 5G communications technology is linked to the spread of the coronavirus outbreak. In the last 24 hours there have been four attacks on Vodafone's mobile network, bringing the total number of incidents across the country including arson, attempted arson, criminal damage and vandalism to 20. - Sunday Times

The government has committed to piloting no-interest loans for people on low incomes, but is resisting calls for the support to be accelerated to tackle the coronavirus recession. The coronavirus crisis has prompted concerns that people on low incomes could fall through the gaps in the government's support, causing them to look to payday lenders and other providers of high-cost credit to pay for essential goods during the lockdown, when they are unable to look for work. - Guardian

Investors are abandoning the US amid fears about its handling of the coronavirus crisis, and tentatively moving billions of pounds back into China. About $3.4bn (£2.6bn) was added to Chinese equity funds in two weeks last month while funds focused on US companies shrank by a staggering £24.5bn. - Sunday Times
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