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Wednesday newspaper round-up: Staff shortages, AstraZeneca, accounting errors

Britain’s employers are offering bonuses of up to £2,000 to recruit Christmas workers amid fears over staff shortages disrupting the festive season. Research from the jobs website Adzuna showed there are currently 26,307 seasonal job vacancies ahead of the pivotal Christmas shopping period, almost double the 13,668 at the same point a year ago.- Guardian
AstraZeneca is to create a new vaccines unit as the Anglo-Swedish drugmaker plans for the future of its coronavirus shot beyond the pandemic. The company said the reorganisation would bring together people who had previously been based in different parts of the business, and will be dedicated to the Covid-19 vaccine and tweaked versions to deal with new variants of Sars-CoV-2. – Guardian

Kwasi Kwarteng is preparing to scrap plans to hold company directors personally liable for accounting failures with the threat of fines and bans, following a fierce business backlash. The Business Secretary is also expected to water down an overhaul of the audit industry and new rules intended to improve the quality of company accounts, amid fears the proposals would strangle thousands of companies with unnecessary red tape. – Telegraph

Single parents paying the higher rate of tax will be entitled to Universal Credit for the first time in a massive expansion of the welfare state’s reach into the middle classes, according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies. The Chancellor’s welfare shake-up at the Budget will mean many workers on more than £50,000 can now claim the state support, with an extra 600,000 families entitled to receive Universal Credit. – Telegraph

Michael Gove has indicated that he will go after big building materials companies whose products were used on Grenfell Tower to help to fund repairs to thousands of unsafe buildings around the country. The communities secretary seemed to take aim at Kingspan, Saint-Gobain and Arconic as he told MPs on the housing select committee yesterday that leaseholders should not have to foot the bill to fix construction flaws. – The Times

New York is braced for the largest initial public offering by an American company in almost a decade today as Rivian Automotive prepares to drive on to the stock market. The electric truck start-up hopes to raise as much as $10 billion from its listing, which could value it at up to $70 billion – a striking achievement for a company that has only just started making its vehicles. It has been deemed a leading player in the electric automotive revolution and is backed by investors including Ford and Amazon. – The Times

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