* The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday said it would review the nation’s first-ever standards requiring power plants to reduce mercury emissions and other toxic air pollutants, taking up a case with implications for President Barack Obama’s broader environmental agenda. (http://on.wsj.com/1yardAw)
* The U.S. Justice Department is investigating allegations that an employee of HSBC Holdings Plc leaked confidential client information to a major hedge fund, according to people familiar with the matter, a new twist in a cross-border government probe into misconduct in the foreign-exchange market. (http://on.wsj.com/1rg5F69)
* British regulators are pressuring Bank of America Corp’s European investment-banking arm to improve the way it manages risks, saying its current practices are “simplistic” and need to be retooled, according to people familiar with the matter and communications reviewed by The Wall Street Journal. (http://on.wsj.com/11UjP0m)
* China does not officially celebrate Thanksgiving or Christmas, but American retailers are hoping to convert a generation of consumers in the world’s most populous country into year-end binge buyers anyway. Starting this week, Chinese shoppers can take advantage of Black Friday discounts from retailers such as Macy’s Inc, American Apparel Inc and Gilt Groupe Inc, thanks to a partnership with Alipay, the payments processor closely tied to e-commerce juggernaut Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. (http://on.wsj.com/1thFKpP)
* PG&E Corp hired a new security company this month to protect a substation that serves Silicon Valley in the wake of security breaches that have cost the utility millions of dollars and raised concerns about protection of the nation’s electricity grid. Federal regulators last week approved new rules requiring utilities to protect important transmission substations and other equipment from physical attacks. (http://on.wsj.com/1vkKkYS)
* San Francisco-based Payward Inc, operator of the Kraken bitcoin exchange, will help the collapsed Mt. Gox exchange investigate the loss of hundreds of thousands of bitcoins and manage the process of paying back its creditors, the companies said Wednesday. (http://on.wsj.com/1rga3SK)
* Combating social-media bullying is a significant part of Adam Choat’s job as a police officer based at an Iowa school district. But an incident this month involving the anonymous messaging app Yik Yak brought new challenges. Familiar with the way youngsters at other schools had used Yik Yak to bully or issue threats, Choat – with Yik Yak’s help – set up a “geo-fence” around Southeast Polk High School to block the app on campus. (http://on.wsj.com/1rrvN8v)
A London-based law firm, Stewarts Law, is gathering shareholders to join a lawsuit against Tesco and seek compensation for losses after the retailer’s profits overstatement.
UK Labour’s threat to strip tax privileges from independent schools would negatively impact rather than help advance social mobility by sapping funds available for bursaries and scholarships and increasing fees, private head teachers have warned.
The Department for Work and Pensions, Britain’s flagship welfare programme faces more delays, with the National Audit Office warning that the universal credit’s new IT system is six months behind schedule.
U.S. tech companies such as Facebook Inc, Apple Inc , Google Inc and Twitter Inc have been criticised by British lawmakers for holding back information on potential terror suspects as part of an official report into the murder of Fusilier Lee Rigby on a London street 18 months ago.
* The Obama administration is expected to release a contentious and long-delayed environmental regulation to curb emissions of ozone, a smog-causing pollutant linked to asthma, heart disease and premature death. The regulation, which would aim at smog from power plants and factories across the country would be the latest in a series of Environmental Protection Agency controls on air pollution.(http://nyti.ms/1yUKllr)
* The Securities and Exchange Commission accused HSBC Bank Plc’s Swiss unit of failing to register with the SEC before providing advice to American clients, an omission that allowed it to avoid scrutiny in Washington. The SEC extracted a $12.5 million penalty from the HSBC unit. (http://nyti.ms/1tstvFP)
* In a surprising move, hedge fund manager Philip Falcone is stepping down as the chief executive and chairman of the Harbinger Group. In leaving the Harbinger Group, he will receive a lump-sum payment of $20.5 million and $19.8 million in bonus money. (http://nyti.ms/1yal9b5)
* The Dutch financial services company ING Groep NV said it would cut 1,700 jobs in the Netherlands and invest 200 million euros, or about $248 million, to expand its digital services. (http://nyti.ms/1plpyYh)
* Less than three months after succeeding her father as executive chairwoman of Banco Santander following his death in September, Ana Botín replaced the Spanish lender’s chief executive and reshaped the bank’s board in a significant shake-up. Santander also will add three new members to its board, replacing Ana Botín’s father, Emilio Botín and two board members who had each served for more than a decade. (http://nyti.ms/1xZAGx2)
* Vista Equity Partners has agreed to acquire the Advanced Computer Software Group, a British health care and business software maker, for 725 million pounds, or about $1.14 billion. (http://nyti.ms/1ybeu1v)
* Steinhoff International Holdings of South Africa said it agreed to acquire a majority stake in the investment holding company Pepkor for 62.8 billion rand, or about $5.7 billion, in shares and cash. (http://nyti.ms/1FmLXIp)
* At its meeting on Thursday in Vienna, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries was under pressure to at least announce modest cuts in an effort to shore up the markets. But any cuts would be modest and would probably do little to prop up oil prices, assuming the countries even stick to an agreement.(http://nyti.ms/1xCMiRe)
CHINA SECURITIES JOURNAL
– China is set to launch policies to support Chinese exports and make domestic firms more competitive in global trade, sources told the official newspaper.
– Beijing will accelerate construction of new energy car charging infrastructure and offer funds to cities that promote new energy cars, the Ministry of Finance said on Tuesday.
SHANGHAI SECURITIES NEWS
– A draft proposal related to reform of China’s power industry has been handed to central authorities, sources told the state-run newspaper. The reform includes trying to attract more private funds into the sector and overhauling pricing.
– A music video celebrating Chinese President Xi Jinping’s relationship with his wife has gone viral in China, receiving 50 million views on the country’s Tencent video service.
– China will draft more regulations to combat terrorism in the country’s restive western Xinjiang region, officials told the newspaper. The draft would deal with issues such as religious extremism, managing Internet usage and cracking down on terror-related audio and visual materials.
– China had nine research institutions in the world’s top 200 this year, up from three last year, according to the Nature Index 2014 Global. The Chinese Academy of Sciences ranked number six overall.
Vodafone gave Scotland Yard phone records of 1,700 News UK staff
Scotland Yard has obtained and examined the mobile phone records of more than 1,700 people working for News UK, the company which publishes The Times, in a major breach of privacy laws. (http://thetim.es/1zVgkTp)
US internet giant failed to pass on terror concerns about Lee Rigby killer
An incriminating message in which Michael Adebowale wrote of his desire to slaughter a British soldier was not passed on to authorities in time to prevent the murder of Lee Rigby, even though his internet service provider suspected him of terrorism links, MPs have been told. (http://thetim.es/1FoC25c)
BG pay deal ‘excessive and inflammatory’, says IoD
The Institute of Directors has launched a blistering attack on the 25 million pounds ($39.29 million) pay deal promised to the new boss of oil and gas group BG Group Plc, saying it damaged the reputation of corporate Britain and urged shareholders in the company to block the proposed package. (http://bit.ly/1vd3qyH)
Rising number of UK workers want to cut back hours, ONS says
Health managers, senior police officers and social workers are Britain’s most “over-employed” employees, according to an official study. Senior officers in the protective services, which covers high-ranking police, firefighters and prison governors, also report they would like a cut in hours, according to figures on over- and under-employment from the Office for National Statistics. (http://bit.ly/1thuAkT)
Bank of England will raise interest rates despite euro gloom, says Mark Carney
Despite several clouds over the UK economy, the Bank of England’s team of interest rate setters is determined to deliver an interest rate hike as their next change in policy. (http://bit.ly/1vklurR) BT shareholders back 10 billion stg mobile takeover plans
BT Group Plc’s biggest shareholders have thrown their weight behind plans for the company to pile headlong into the mobile market with a 10 billion pounds acquisition of either EE or O2. (http://bit.ly/1tsfsAe)
Osborne To Unveil Bank Switching Overhaul
George Osborne is turning the screw on Britain’s biggest banks by demanding an urgent overhaul of the seven-day current accounts switching regime. (http://bit.ly/1AQJhTH)
Mortgage Warning For People Aged Over 40
As mortgage lending continues to slow an industry body is warning that new rules mean people over 40 are being denied loans because of their age. (http://bit.ly/1FoEGb2)
Topshop’s Philip Green expects major price cuts in battle for Christmas sales
Topshop tycoon Sir Philip Green has predicted a high street discount war this Christmas as retailers attempt to win back shoppers after a mild autumn. (http://ind.pn/1trqNjV)
“Aggressive” credit card market to be investigated by City watchdog
The credit card industry was thrust back in the dock this morning after the Financial Conduct Authority announced details of its market study into the 150 billion pounds market. (http://ind.pn/1pkOYFl)