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Wednesday newspaper round-up: Rail fares, CBS/Viacom, Brexit, Burford Capital

Wed 14 August 2019 07:28 | A A A

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(Sharecast News) - Campaigners and unions have warned that ever higher train fares risk driving passengers off the railway, as a fresh increase of about 2.9% is expected to be confirmed on Wednesday and after a decade when fares have risen at double the rate of wages. The fare rise, to take effect in January but dictated by the July inflation figure that will be published by the Office for National Statistics on Wednesday, will add more than £100 to many annual season tickets. - Guardian

US media companies CBS and Viacom announced a merger on Tuesday in a bid to strengthen their position as they take on Netflix's streaming insurgency and face up to the loss of "cord-cutter" viewers. The deal, which will reunify the pair after more than a decade apart and create a new company worth about $30bn, combines Viacom's MTV, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and the Paramount film and TV studio with CBS's broadcast network and its Showtime subscription channel. - Guardian

The Government has asked industry groups to come up with "creative and practical" ways to help businesses prepare for a no-deal Brexit. It has also invited them to bid for funding to help tell companies how to brace for the impact of the UK crashing out of the European Union without a trade agreement. - Telegraph

Boris Johnson risks betraying the EU referendum result by allowing "unelected people" intent on wrecking any chance of a deal to "pull the strings" of his government, Philip Hammond is warning. In his first intervention since resigning as chancellor, Mr Hammond accuses Dominic Cummings, Mr Johnson's most senior aide, of attempting to force through a no-deal Brexit by making demands that Brussels "cannot, and will not, accede to". - The Times

The American short-seller targeting Burford Capital has stepped up its campaign by issuing a second critical report on the litigation finance company and calling on the City regulator to launch a formal investigation. Muddy Waters, the San Francisco-based bear raider, said: "We believe that management's conduct has possibly given rise to sanctions claims by the FCA [Financial Conduct Authority]. - The Times

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