BBC: UK inflation rate at highest level since September 2013. The Guardian: Merkel ally signals EU open to compromise on UK’s Brexit bill
PRESS REVIEW 16 MAY. The Guardian – Merkel ally signals EU open to compromise on UK’s Brexit bill; BBC – Manchester United reports £3.8m loss but revenue rises; BBC – The UK’s inflation rate rose last month to its highest since September 2013, official figures show.
The Guardian – Merkel ally signals EU open to compromise on UK’s Brexit bill
Manfred Weber says divorce bill is likely to be easier to resolve than issues of citizens’ rights and Irish border.
A middle way should “easily” be negotiated between Britain’s claims to have no divorce bill to settle when it leaves the EU and Brussels’ position that the country could owe as much as €100bn, the leader of the largest group in the European parliament has said.
In the first significant sign of a willingness on the EU side to compromise on the highly contentious issue, Manfred Weber, chair of the centre-right European People’s party, of which Angela Merkel is a leading light, suggested the bloc could be open to reducing its initial demands.
Weber said the UK’s need to fulfil its commitments in the EU budget up to the point it leaves in 2019 formed a “solid basis” from which to start the talks. But he appeared to suggest Theresa May might be able to reduce Britain’s total bill by pointing to its share of the bloc’s £130bn assets, which would include buildings, investments and even its generous wine cellar.
BBC – UK inflation rate at highest level since September 2013
The UK’s inflation rate rose last month to its highest since September 2013, official figures show. Inflation now stands at 2.7% – up from 2.3% in March – and above the Bank of England’s 2% target.
The main reason was higher air fares, which rose because of the later date of Easter this year compared with 2016.
Rising prices for clothing, vehicle excise duty and electricity also played a part, but a fall in the price of petrol and diesel slightly offset this.
Last week, the Bank of England warned that inflation as measured by the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) would peak at just below 3% this year.
BBC – Manchester United reports £3.8m loss but revenue rises
Manchester United has reported a loss for the first three months of the year as operating expenses soared.
It lost £3.8m between January and March, down from a £13.7m profit in the same period last year.
The Old Trafford club incurred higher player contract expenses, and was also hit by adverse foreign exchange movements. But total revenues were 3% higher at £127.2m and the club now expects revenues of £570m for the full year.
If the club beats Ajax in the Europa League final on 24 May it would secure a coveted place in the Champions League for next season.