TCREUR_Public/130906.mbx         T R O U B L E D   C O M P A N Y   R E P O R T E R

                           E U R O P E

           Friday, September 6, 2013, Vol. 14, No. 177



DEVELOPMENT BANK: S&P Assigns 'B-' ICR; Outlook Positive

C Z E C H   R E P U B L I C

* CZECH REPUBLIC: Moody's Says Outlook for Banks Remains Negative


NOKIA: Fitch Places 'BB-' IDR on Rating Watch Positive


PRAKTIKER AG: May Be Sold Off Piecemeal After No Buyer Found
* GERMANY: January-June Business Insolvencies Up 1.8% to 15,349


* GREECE: "Very Likely" to Need More Financial Aid After 2014
* Fitch Says Greek Bank Streamlining May Support Profits, Capital


MARFRIG HOLDINGS: Moody's Rates New US$600MM Senior Notes 'B2'


ANINOASA: Romanian Town Files for Bankruptcy


PESCANOVA SA: Auditors Discover EUR3.6 Billion of Hidden Debts
PESCANOVA SA: Judge Orders Execs to Put Up EUR1.2 Billion


CREDIT SUISSE: Fitch Rates CHF290MM Tier 1 Capital Notes 'BB+'
IBERIAN MINERALS: Fitch Withdraws 'B' IDR on No Sufficient Info


BURGAN BANK: Moody's Affirms Ba2 Deposit Ratings; Outlook Stable

U N I T E D   K I N G D O M

CLARIS LIMITED: Moody's Lowers Rating on EUR43MM Notes to 'Caa1'
CO-OPERATIVE BANK: Ex-Boss Quits over Lloyds Deal Warning Snob
HULL COUNCIL: Faces Potential Insolvency Process
LAPLAND NEW: Exec Banned For 10 Yrs For Inadequate Record Keeping
PIXMANIA: Dixons Retail Opts to Offload Loss-Making Business

SIGMA PAYROLL: Exec Gets Six-Year Ban Over GBP6MM Undeclared Tax
VPHASE PLC: Fails to Secure Funding; Appoints Administrators
* Plymouth Insolvency Rate Drop in July 2013


* Moody's: Global Auto Manufacturers' Industry Outlook Stable
* Moody's Says Global Reinsurance Industry's Outlook Stable
* BOOK REVIEW: A Legal History of Money in the United States



DEVELOPMENT BANK: S&P Assigns 'B-' ICR; Outlook Positive
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned its 'B-/B' long-
and short-term foreign and local currency issuer credit ratings
to the Development Bank of the Republic of Belarus (DBRB).  The
outlook is positive.

S&P rates DBRB under our criteria for government-related
entities. S&P equalizes the ratings with the Republic of Belarus,
based on its assessment that there is an almost certain
likelihood that the Belarus government would provide timely and
extraordinary support sufficient to service the bank's financial
obligations, if needed. S&P's assessment of the likelihood of
extraordinary support is based on its view of:

   -- DBRB's integral link to the government, demonstrated by the
      state's 100% ultimate ownership, capital injections
      provided in the past, and its de facto responsibility for
      all of the bank's obligations.  Key government figures,
      including the prime minister, are members of DBRB's
      supervisory board, allowing the state to maintain close
      oversight of the bank's activities.  The bank enjoys
      special status as a "specialized financial institution"
      making it exempt from some of the regulations set by the
      National Bank of the Republic of Belarus for other banks.
      DBRB's critical public policy role as the main institution
      providing long-term capital-intensive loans under
      government programs in Belarus, which cannot otherwise be
      undertaken by banks on commercial terms.

   -- The bank is a key agent in the selected sectors which the
      government deems essential for the Belarus economy.

BRB's stand-alone credit profile (SACP, including ongoing
government support) is 'ccc+', reflecting the bank's anchor of
'b-', as well as its moderate business position, moderate capital
and earnings, adequate risk position, average funding and
adequate liquidity, as S&P's criteria define these terms.  The
bank's SACP balances S&P's view of very high credit risk in the
loan portfolio, absence of a track-record of successful strategy
implementation, as well as somewhat unpredictable financial
policy over the medium term against its robust liquidity and
funding positions.

The positive outlook on DBRB mirrors S&P's outlook on Belarus.
It also reflects S&P's opinion that it do not currently expect to
change its assessment of the bank's critical role for and
integral link with the government.  S&P would likely raise or
lower the ratings on DBRB if it raised or lowered the ratings on

S&P expects strong government support to be provided to DBRB over
the forecast horizon.  That said, a deviation from the bank's
role in government policy, or signs of weakening government
support, would result in downward rating pressure.

C Z E C H   R E P U B L I C

* CZECH REPUBLIC: Moody's Says Outlook for Banks Remains Negative
The outlook for the Czech Republic's banking system remains
negative, unchanged since December 2011, says Moody's Investors
Service in a new report entitled "Banking System Outlook: Czech

The main factor driving the negative outlook is Moody's
expectation that the fragile domestic economy and weak macro
conditions in the euro area will continue to negatively affect
banks' performance. Over the outlook period, banks will likely
experience moderately higher loan delinquencies and rising
provisioning, weakening their very strong profitability metrics.

Over the 12-18 month outlook period, the weak economic outlook
poses risks to asset quality and the rating agency expects that
higher delinquencies in commercial real-estate (CRE) and
construction, manufacturing and trade will prompt a moderate
increase in the banks' non-performing loans (NPLs) from the June
level of 6%. As noted in July, Moody's expects the Czech economy
to contract by 0.3% in 2013, and risks to its forecast of 1.8%
GDP growth in 2014 are weighted to the downside, as ongoing
political uncertainty could hinder economic recovery. In
addition, given still fragile economic conditions in the euro
area, a recovery in Czech exports might fail to materialize.

Robust capital buffers (with a system-wide 16.6% aggregate Tier 1
ratio at end-June 2013) and solid pre-provision earnings will
enable banks to cope with moderate asset-quality deterioration,
under Moody's central scenario. Funding and liquidity profiles
remain strong and will likely remain stable over the outlook
period, whilst the loans-to-deposits ratio of 76% at year-end
2012 will help limit the impact of persistent international
market turbulence that affects some Czech banks' foreign parents.

However, banks' historically-strong profitability metrics will
likely weaken as (1) the low-interest rate environment and
competition to attract and retain retail deposits will continue
to drive down Czech banks' net interest margins; and (2) subdued
domestic growth prospects will continue to constrain banks' fee

In addition, the negative outlook for the Czech Republic's
banking system takes into account Moody's assessment of the
recent European Union's Bank Recovery and Resolution draft
directive which endorses the rating agency's deteriorating view
on Czech systemic support, suggesting that support in all EU
countries for senior creditors, including those of systemically
important banks, is now less certain, even where the sovereign
has the resources to fund bank bailouts.


NOKIA: Fitch Places 'BB-' IDR on Rating Watch Positive
Fitch Ratings has placed Nokia's Long-term Issuer Default Rating
(IDR) and senior unsecured ratings of 'BB-' on Rating Watch
Positive (RWP), following the announcement of the disposal its
Devices & Services (D&S) business to Microsoft Corporation

The RWP takes into account the significant improvement envisaged
by Fitch in Nokia's operating and financial profile following the
closure of the proposed deal, which is expected in Q114. A
business that will incorporate the Nokia Solutions & Networks
(NSN) equipment business, Nokia's patent portfolio and its
locations based business, is currently performing profitably,
generates positive free cash flow and is expected by Fitch to
maintain a strong capital structure, including a significant net
cash position. Management's desire to see the company return to
investment grade supports an expectation that financial policy
will evolve cautiously.

Key Rating Drivers

Removing Handsets Weakness
The sale of the D&S business brings to a close a period of
extreme stress in the credit profile of the handset industry's
former leading manufacturer -- at one time responsible for close
to 40% handset unit volumes on a consistent basis. The pace of
industry change, the accelerated advent of the smartphone and
dominance of Apple's iOS and Google's Android as the industry's
leading operating systems have seen Nokia's handsets business
increasingly marginalized. This business has recorded significant
losses and driven material weakness in the company's cash flows.

NSN Underpins Credit Profile
The company's NSN equipment business, has proven increasingly
resilient, posting positive (non-IFRS) operating income for the
past five quarters and generating positive cash flow for the last
seven quarters. The buyout of its joint venture partner closed in
August 2013, and in Fitch's view was a credit positive given the
strongly improved performance of this business. Performance is
based on a strategic shift toward mobile networks and markets
where management felt stronger margins could be generated. The
key for management will be to stabilize revenue and share trends
(which have been declining) while continuing to deliver margin
and cash flow performance.

Pro-forma Performance
Pro-forma for the disposal the remaining business generated a
non-IFRS operating margin of 8.5% in 2012 and 12.1% in H113, a
performance underpinned by the NSN business. Combined with a
commitment to a conservative balance sheet, this performance is
consistent with a higher rating than the current 'BB-'. Where the
rating settles will largely depend on Fitch's views of whether
margin and cash flow can be sustained over the medium term,
importantly taking into account prospects for NSN to maintain and
improve market share in an extremely competitive equipment

Ratings Upside
Fitch expects that the closure of the disposal is at a minimum
likely to lead to an affirmation of the current ratings at 'BB-'
with a Stable Outlook or a potential one-notch upgrade. Post
disposal, Nokia's credit profile will be driven predominantly by
NSN. It will be important for Nokia to prove the sustainability
of its current margin and cash flow profile amid an acutely
competitive industry in order to achieve its longer-term

Rating Sensitivities

Positive: Future developments that could lead to positive rating
actions include:

-- Closure of the D&S disposal along with signs the margin and
    cash flow profile currently presented by Nokia on a pro-forma
    basis are sustainable.

-- Any positive action would be predicated on clarity over
    management's expectations for the company's long-term capital
    structure. Fitch would expect this to continue to include a
    net cash position.

Negative: Future developments that could lead to negative rating
action include:

-- Failure of the proposed disposal to complete within the
    timeline laid out by the company would be likely to lead, at
    a minimum, to the assignment of a Negative Outlook on the
    current ratings, subject to ongoing performance at both NSN
    and the D&S division.


PRAKTIKER AG: May Be Sold Off Piecemeal After No Buyer Found
Maria Sheahan, Alexander Huebner, Sabine Wollrab and Peter
Dinkloh at Reuters report that Praktiker AG will be dismantled
and sold off piecemeal after the insolvent company's
administrator failed to find a buyer for its remaining 130

According to Reuters, Praktiker's insolvency administrator
Christopher Seagon said in a statement on Wednesday that the
stores, which have about 5,330 employees, will start a clearance
sale in the coming weeks so their empty shells can be sold off

Reuters relates that labor union Verdi said the decision was a
"devastating catastrophe" for Praktiker's workers as it was
unlikely that any new owner would keep them on.

Praktiker filed for insolvency in July after talks with creditors
failed, triggering fears of heavy job losses, Reuters recounts.

Administrators have kept the business running while reviewing
options for the chain, whose blue and yellow-branded stores
selling paints, tools and gardening products are a familiar sight
in Germany's out-of-town shopping centers, Reuters notes.

According to Reuters, Mr. Seagon and Max Bahr administrator
Jens-Soeren Schroeder said its more up-market brand Max Bahr,
which is also insolvent, has attracted indicative offers from
both strategic and financial buyers.

The statement said that some of those bidders have expressed
interest in picking up a few individual Praktiker stores as well,
as have some rivals and other potential buyers, Reuters notes.

A source earlier told Reuters that those companies will now be
given access to Praktiker's financial data, with any deals to be
made by the end of September.

The Praktiker group's most recent published financial data showed
a year-on-year net debt increase of more than a quarter to EUR535
million (US$704 million) by the end of March, Reuters discloses.
At the same time, its liquid funds shrank by almost 29% to
EUR51.3 million, Reuters states.

Praktiker AG is a German home-improvement retailer.

* GERMANY: January-June Business Insolvencies Up 1.8% to 15,349
Deutsche Welle reports that the number of German businesses that
went bust in the first half of 2013 was higher than in the same
period last year.

Experts attribute the first rise in three years to sluggish
economic growth at the beginning of 2013, Deutsche Welle

Between January and June this year 15,349 German businesses filed
for insolvency, which was 1.8% more than during the same period
last year, Deutsche Welle says, citing the Buergel company data

According to the latest figures released by Buergel on Thursday,
the six-month increase was the first since 2009 and accounted for
commercial losses totaling EUR16.3 billion (US$21.4 billion),
Deutsche Welle notes.

Deutsche Welle relates that Buergel Chief Executive Norbert
Sellin said in a statement bankruptcies edged up especially in
the manufacturing and services sector as sluggish demand in the
first quarter of this year had forced companies to shelve
investments.  Moreover, uncertainty caused by the eurozone crisis
had clouded business in the period, Deutsche Welle notes.

Mr. Sellin also said that bankruptcies in the second half of 2013
were expected to continue rising, but at a slower pace,
Deutsche Welle relates.  He estimated the total number of German
firms going bust in 2013 at about 30,000 -- some 900 or 3%
percent more than in 2012, Deutsche Welle discloses.

As in previous years, the percentage of new businesses that
failed were higher than the overall average, making up about a
quarter of all bankruptcies with a total number of 3,808 filings,
Deutsche Welle states.


* GREECE: "Very Likely" to Need More Financial Aid After 2014
Juergen Baetz at The Associated Press reports that
Jeroen Dijsselbloem, the chairman of the eurozone finance
ministers' meetings, acknowledged Thursday Greece will "very
likely" need more financial aid beyond its current rescue loan
programs, which end next year.

Greece has been kept out of bankruptcy since 2010 with rescue
loans worth EUR240 billion (US$316 billion) from its eurozone
partners and the International Monetary Fund, the AP discloses.
The possible need for further aid has proven a politically toxic
issue in creditor countries like Germany, the AP notes.

According to the AP, Mr. Dijsselbloem told lawmakers in the
European Parliament "It's clear that despite recent progress,
Greece's trouble will not have been completely resolved by 2014."

He said "it's realistic to assume that additional support will be
needed beyond the program," provided Greece complies with
conditions set out by the eurozone finance ministers,
collectively known as the Eurogroup.  He says a decision won't be
made before April of next year, the AP discloses.

Mr. Dijsselbloem, as cited by the AP, said that the main
conditions are for Greece to achieve an annual primary budget
surplus -- that is, before the cost of servicing its debt -- plus
the full implementation of reforms Athens has agreed to in return
for its bailout loans.

"Further progress is needed, specifically in the field of public
sector reform and tax administration reform," the AP quotes
Mr. Dijsselbloem as saying.

Mr. Dijsselbloem, who is also the Dutch finance minister, said
the 17-nation eurozone has made clear it stands ready to assist
Greece further, possibly by again reducing the interest rates on
the bailout loans, until Athens is able to refinance itself again
on financial markets, the AP notes.

The IMF estimated in July that Greece faces a financing shortfall
of about EUR11 billion (US$14.5 billion) through 2015, the AP
recounts.  According to the AP, Mr. Dijsselbloem, however,
declined to estimate Greece's additional financing need, saying
"speculation at this stage isn't helpful."

"It's much too early to talk about the character of a new
program, the size or the conditions of a new program,"
Mr. Dijsselbloem insisted.

Many analysts maintain Greece's debt load will still be
unsustainably high at the end of the program, possibly requiring
eurozone lenders to forgive some of their loans to Greece, the AP

Greece had to seek international rescue loans in May 2010, when
the dire state of the country's public finances left it unable to
borrow on international bond markets, the AP recounts.  To
qualify for the loans, Greece pushed through repeated rounds of
austerity measures, slashing state spending, cutting state sector
salaries and pensions and increasing taxes across the board, the
AP discloses.

* Fitch Says Greek Bank Streamlining May Support Profits, Capital
The four largest Greek banks' efforts to restructure and
integrate recent bank acquisitions could deliver cost synergies
and support earnings and capital, Fitch Ratings says. But there
remain downside risks if there is a prolonged and deeper
recession in Greece and planned cost savings do not materialize.

"We expect the restructuring and integration costs recognized in
H113 to eventually produce greater efficiency. Piraeus has been
the most active in acquiring banks since H212, achieving total
assets of EUR95 billion and a leading position in Greece with its
market share for loans and deposits around 30%. Alpha's
acquisition of Emporiki Bank and Eurobank's acquisition of New
Hellenic Postbank and New Proton Bank have given them critical
mass with EUR74 billion and EUR82 billion total assets at end-
H113, respectively," Fitch says.

"National Bank of Greece (NBG), the largest bank by assets
(EUR110 billion), has been less active in domestic consolidation
as it already has critical mass. It also benefits from its
profitable Turkish operations, which contributed 56% to group
pre-impairment operating profit despite making up only 22% of
total assets at end-H113.

"Integrating weaker-performing banks in a poor operating
environment will be challenging. We currently forecast Greece's
GDP to return to growth in 2014, but by only 0.3%. Low interest
rates, subdued business activity and further balance-sheet
deleveraging depressed operating revenue in H113. The country's
macroeconomy remains fragile and uncertain.

"Nevertheless, the four banks improved profitability in H113,
largely benefiting from a decline in loan impairment charges as
the inflow of problem loans decelerated and from lower funding
costs. Integration synergies from recent acquisitions, together
with a further reduction in funding costs and a slower pace of
asset-quality deterioration could improve domestic operating
profitability in H213 and 2014.

"We expect problem loans to continue to rise until at least the
end of 2014 as the economy remains weak, but at a slower pace
than in 2012. This should reduce loan impairment charges although
they will remain high. At end-H113 non-performing loan ratios
were 20.5% at NBG, 25.3% at Eurobank, 31.8% at Alpha and 33.2% at
Piraeus, with the loan impairment reserve coverage ratios staying
around 50%-55%.

"The banks also benefitted from lower funding costs in H113 as a
result of reduced term deposit rates and dropping the costlier
Emergency Liquidity Assistance funds. Greek banks resumed funding
directly from the ECB in December, a cheaper source of funding
and liquidity. Funding and liquidity have also improved through
balance-sheet deleveraging, restored depositor confidence after
the recapitalization and the risk of a Greek exit from the
eurozone receding. However, we expect banks' funding imbalances
to persist and to continue to be sensitive to macroeconomic and
sovereign developments.

"Capital injections have put the four major Greek banks largely
under state ownership. Only Eurobank failed to meet the 10% of
capital needs from private investors, causing it to become a
nationalized bank run by the Hellenic Financial Stability Fund.
The EBA pro forma core capital ratios of the four major banks
were 8.1% at Eurobank, 9.2% at NBG, 13.8% at Piraeus and 13.9% at
Alpha at end-H113.

"Both Eurobank and NBG need to improve their capital, despite
their credit quality being better than peers. They expect to
achieve this internally through earnings and further
restructuring (ie, non-core asset disposals). This, together with
the EUR5 billion capital buffer of the EUR50 billion capital
backstop facility under the IMF/EU program, provides all four
banks with some cushion to absorb any additional credit
impairments that could arise from the next loan stress test in
late 2013."


MARFRIG HOLDINGS: Moody's Rates New US$600MM Senior Notes 'B2'
Moody's Investors Service has confirmed the ratings for Marfrig
S.A. including its B2 corporate family rating (CFR). This
concludes the rating review which began on May 22, 2013. At the
same time, Moody's assigned a B2 foreign currency rating to the
company's proposed issuance of up to US$600 million senior
unsecured notes due 2021. Proceeds from the proposed notes are
intended to finance a tender offer of US$375 million of notes due
2016 and to repay and/or refinance outstanding indebtedness. The
outlook for all the ratings is stable.

The following ratings have been confirmed:

Issuer: Marfrig Alimentos S.A.

- Corporate Family Rating: B2 (global scale); stable outlook

Issuer: Marfrig Overseas Limited and guaranteed by Marfrig:

- USD375 million 9.625% senior unsecured guaranteed notes due
   2016: B2 (foreign currency); stable outlook

- USD500 million 9.500% senior unsecured guaranteed notes due
   2020: B2 (foreign currency); stable outlook

Issuer: Marfrig Holdings (Europe) B.V. and guaranteed by Marfrig:

- USD750 million 8.375% senior unsecured guaranteed notes due
   2018: B2 (foreign currency); stable outlook

- USD600 million 9.875% senior unsecured guaranteed notes due
   2017: B2 (foreign currency); stable outlook

Ratings assigned:

Issuer: Marfrig Holdings (Europe) B.V. and guaranteed by Marfrig:

- Proposed USD600 million senior unsecured guaranteed notes due
   2021: B2 (foreign currency); stable outlook

Ratings Rationale

The confirmation of Marfrig's B2 ratings reflects Moody's view
that the sale of Seara Brasil and Zenda to JBS (Ba3 negative) for
BRL5.85 billion will result in a meaningful improvement in the
company's liquidity profile and leverage ratios, despite the
EBITDA loss from the divested assets. The disposal of the assets
will also contribute to a considerable reduction in working
capital needs and capital expenditures.

In its projections, Moody's estimates that Marfrig's pro-forma
adjusted debt to EBITDA should approach 5.8x in 2013 and 5.2x in
2014, from 6.4x in June 2013. At the same time, short-term debt
should be reduced to around BRL1 billion following the closing of
the deal, from BRL2.2 billion in June 2013. The transaction is
expected to close by the end of September 2013 following the
review of CADE (Conselho Administrativo de Defesa Econ“mica), the
Brazilian anti-trust authority.

Marfrig's ratings are supported by the company's diversified
portfolio of animal proteins and strong brands, as well as its
large geographic footprint and global distribution capabilities.
Its diversity in terms of raw material sourcing reduces the risks
related to weather and animal diseases, while its large product
portfolio helps mitigate the volatilities inherent in commodity
cycles and supply-demand conditions for each specific protein. On
the other hand, the company's ratings are constrained by its
still elevated leverage and historically pressured operating
performance and credit metrics. Moreover, the ratings reflect the
lack of clarity over the company's future growth strategy and in
its financial policies and disclosures.

In analyzing the company's financial policy Moody's considered
the recent decision to postpone the payment of the annual
interest on its BRL2.150 billion convertible debentures to
November 15, 2013 from July 15th 2013, as agreed by Marfrig's
debenture holders in a general meeting held July 12, 2013. The
postponement was viewed by Moody's as a missed interest payment
and therefore considered a default on the instrument, as noted in
an issuer comment dated July 17th. While Moody's recognizes that
the payment delay was a business decision rather than a liquidity
one, Moody's views it as an adverse creditor action by the

The stable outlook reflects Moody's view that Marfrig will be
able to maintain operating margins near current levels and
improve liquidity over the near term.

The ratings or outlook could be upgraded if Marfrig demonstrates
consistent and predictable execution of its financial policy with
the ability to improve liquidity and keep operating margins at
least near current levels. In addition, it would require a CFO/
Net Debt approaching 15% and a Total Debt / EBITDA below 4.5x.

Marfrig's ratings could be downgraded if a consistent and
predictable financial policy execution is not observed going
forward. A downgrade could also be triggered if liquidity were to
deteriorate in a way that unrestricted cash position would
represent less than 80% of short term debt. Quantitatively,
downward pressure on Marfrig's B2 rating or outlook is likely if
Total Debt / EBITDA is sustained above 6.0x, EBITA to gross
interest expense falls below 1.0x or if Retained Cash Flow to Net
Debt is below 10%. All credit metrics are according to Moody's
standard adjustments and definitions.

Marfrig, headquartered in Sao Paulo, Brazil, is one of the
largest protein players globally, with consolidated revenues of
BRL25.5 billion (approximately US$11.0 billion) in the last
twelve months period ended in June, 2013. The company has
significant scale and is diversified in terms of sales, raw
materials and product portfolio, with operations in Brazil, US,
UK and many other countries and presence in the beef, poultry and
food services segments.

Following the sale of Seara Brasil and Zenda units to JBS (Ba3 /
Negative), Marfrig's annual revenues will be of about BRL20
billion (approximately US$8.7 billion) and the company will have
three main business segments, which are Marfrig Beef, Keystone
and Moy Park. On a pro-forma basis, excluding the divested
assets, Marfrig beef should account for about 46% of the group's
consolidated revenues, while Keystone should contribute with 33%
of sales and Moy Park with the balance of 21%. About half of its
sales will derive from international operations, while 70% of
EBITDA is expected to be tied to foreign currencies.

Marfrig Beef is the world's third largest beef producer, with
operations in Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina. Keystone,
headquartered in the US, is one of the world's largest Food
Service suppliers in the US and Asia, being Mc Donalds its main
client, accounting for almost 70% of its revenues. Moy Park is
present in the UK, Northern Ireland, Ireland, France and
Netherlands. The company is one of the largest poultry-based
processed products suppliers in the UK and Euro region.

The date of the last Credit Rating Action was May 22, 2013.

The principal methodology used in this rating was the Global
Protein and Agriculture Industry Methodology published in May


ANINOASA: Romanian Town Files for Bankruptcy
euronews reports that the Romanian town of Aninoasa has become
the country's first to file for bankruptcy.

Despite having access to EU financial aid, officials have been
unable to repay loans for investment projects and they have
decided the spiral of debt must be stopped, euronews relates.

According to the report, Deputy Mayor, Adrian Albescu said his
boss likes to joke that there are only two important insolvent
towns in the world, Detroit in America and now Aninoasa in

Euronews relates that chronic poverty is nothing new in this part
of the world and some locals said EU membership has not improved
their lives.

"There aren't any opportunities to work. You may be able to find
a job in a shop or in a bar, but that's it," the report quotes
Petrica Velovici as saying.

With hundreds more Romanian towns unable to support themselves,
Aninoasa may not be the last to declare itself bust, euronews


PESCANOVA SA: Auditors Discover EUR3.6 Billion of Hidden Debts
Miles Johnson at The Financial Times reports that the collapse of
Pescanova SA has become the largest non-construction sector
bankruptcy in Spanish history after auditors discovered total
debts of EUR3.6 billion that had been hidden.

Pescanova's sudden bankruptcy sent shockwaves across the Spanish
business world after the medium-sized company failed to present
its full-year accounts for 2012, and then declared previously
unknown debts of less than half the amount now uncovered, the FT

According to the FT, people familiar with the situation said that
a report into the collapse of the company conducted by Deloitte,
and presented to a Galician court this week, concluded that it
had debts of more than EUR3.6 billion that had been hidden across
various subsidiaries around the world.  An earlier report by
KPMG, published in July, had put the total debts at EUR3.3
billion, the FT notes.

The EUR3.6 billion bankruptcy caught out many of Spain's largest
banks which, along with international institutions, had lent the
company money, the FT states.

On Monday, executives from the company, including Manuel
Fernandez de Sousa, its former chairman and largest shareholder,
were ordered by the Galician court to pay EUR1.2 billion to cover
potential claims against the company, which has had its shares
suspended since March, the FT relates.

Fernandez de Sousa is being investigated by Spain's financial
regulator for possible market abuse after he was found to have
sold half of his 14.4% stake in the company in the months leading
up to its insolvency filing, without updating the regulator, the
FT discloses.  Some of the funds raised were then lent back to
the company, which was facing mounting liquidity problems, the FT

Pescanova dismissed its previous auditor, BDO, because it had
refused to sign off on its full-year accounts before the
bankruptcy filing, according to the FT.  The auditor later wrote
a letter to the market regulator claiming that it had been
repeatedly refused access to key documents which had made it
impossible to carry out its work, the FT recounts.

Among the company's creditors is the Frob, the Spanish
government's bank bailout fund, as it had already taken control
of Nova Caixa Galicia, the rescued savings bank from the region
that had been one of the main credit providers to Pescanova, the
FT discloses.

Pescanova filed for insolvency on April 15, 2013, on at least
EUR1.5 billion (US$2 billion) of debt run up to fuel expansion
before economic crisis hit its earnings.  The Pontevedra
mercantile court in northwestern Galicia accepted Pescanova's
insolvency petition on April 25.  The court ordered the board of
directors to step down and proposed Deloitte as the firm's

PESCANOVA SA: Judge Orders Execs to Put Up EUR1.2 Billion
Reuters reports that executives at Spanish fishing firm
Pescanova, including its former chairman, were ordered by a judge
on Sept. 2 to put up more than EUR1.2 billion ($1.6 billion) to
cover potential damages after it filed for insolvency in April.

Pescanova has become one of the most high-profile cases in a year
of record-high bankruptcies in Spain after auditors said managers
had tried to conceal the extent of its debt, says Reuters.

According to the news agency, Manuel Fernandez de Sousa, who
stepped down as chairman in July after more than three decades,
but who remains a board member, has been charged with falsifying
information and insider trading. He has denied any wrongdoing,
the report says.

Reuters relates that the judge leading the investigation ordered
Fernandez de Sousa to deposit just under EUR179 million.

The funds will guarantee payouts to claimants, including several
shareholders who lost money in Pescanova, if those charged are
found guilty, the report notes.

Reuters adds that other former and present board members and
executives connected to the company's management and six
companies they either represented as board members or were
related to in other ways were ordered to put up smaller amounts.

Pescanova itself has to deposit EUR55 million euros, Reuters

Pescanova is a Galicia-based fishing company.  The company
catches, processes, and packages fish on factory ships.  It is
one of the world's largest fishing groups.

Pescanova filed for insolvency on April 15, 2013, on at least
EUR1.5 billion (US$2 billion) of debt run up to fuel expansion
before economic crisis hit its earnings.  The Pontevedra
mercantile court in northwestern Galicia accepted Pescanova's
insolvency petition on April 25.  The court ordered the board of
directors to step down and proposed Deloitte as the firm's


CREDIT SUISSE: Fitch Rates CHF290MM Tier 1 Capital Notes 'BB+'
Fitch Ratings has assigned Credit Suisse Group AG's
(A/Stable/F1/a) CHF290 million 6% Tier 1 capital notes a 'BB+'
final rating. The rating is in line with the expected rating
assigned on Aug. 19, 2013. The notes (ISIN: CH0221803791) are
structured to qualify as additional Tier 1 capital under Basel
III and as progressive component capital ("low-trigger"
contingent capital instruments) under Switzerland's revised
capital requirement framework for the country's largest banks.

Key Rating Drivers

The notes are rated five notches below Credit Suisse Group AG's
Viability Rating (VR) in accordance with Fitch's criteria for
"Assessing and Rating Bank Subordinated and Hybrid Securities"
(dated 5 December 2012). The notching reflects the notes' loss
severity and incremental non-performance risk.

Coupon payment on the notes is fully discretionary. The notes are
subject to full and permanent write-down if the bank has been
declared non-viable by the regulator or if it has received state
aid to avoid a default. The notes will also be fully and
permanently written down if the sum of Credit Suisse Group AG's
consolidated Basel III common equity Tier 1 capital ratio and its
higher-trigger contingent capital instrument to risk-weighted
assets ratio falls below 5.125%.

Fitch has applied three notches for incremental non-performance
risk to reflect the instruments' fully discretionary coupon
payment, which Fitch considers the most easily activated form of
loss absorption. Fitch has applied two notches for loss severity
given the notes' full and permanent write-down feature.

Fitch has assigned 50% equity credit to the notes to reflect
their perpetual nature, their level of subordination and the
fully-discretionary coupon payment.

Rating Sensitivities

As the notes are notched from Credit Suisse Group AG's VR, their
rating is primarily sensitive to any change in this rating, which
itself is currently in line with Credit Suisse AG's VR, in line
with Fitch's 'Rating FI Subsidiaries and Holding Companies'
criteria (10 August 2012). The notes' rating is also sensitive to
any change in notching that could arise if Fitch changed its
assessment of the probability of the notes' non-performance risk
relative to the risk captured in Credit Suisse Group AG's VR.
This might reflect a change in capital management or an
unexpected shift in regulatory buffers, for example.

IBERIAN MINERALS: Fitch Withdraws 'B' IDR on No Sufficient Info
Fitch Ratings has withdrawn Switzerland-registered Iberian
Minerals Corp's (Iberian) Long-term Issuer Default Rating (IDR)
of 'B' with Stable Outlook.

Iberian has chosen to stop participating in the rating process.
Therefore, Fitch will no longer have sufficient information to
maintain the ratings. Accordingly, Fitch will no longer provide
ratings or analytical coverage for Iberian.


BURGAN BANK: Moody's Affirms Ba2 Deposit Ratings; Outlook Stable
Moody's Investors Service has affirmed the Ba2/Not Prime global
local-currency (GLC) and foreign-currency deposits ratings of
Burgan Bank AS (Burgan-AS) based in Turkey. Concurrently, Moody's
downgraded the standalone bank financial strength rating (BFSR)
to E+ (from D-) which is now equivalent to a baseline credit
assessment (BCA) of b2 (formerly ba3). The outlook on all
assigned ratings is stable.

The affirmation of the Ba2 long-term deposit ratings reflects
Moody's assumption of very high probability of parental support
for Burgan-AS from Burgan Bank SAK (Burgan-SAK: deposits A3
stable, BFSR D+/BCA ba1 stable), based in Kuwait. However, the
lowering of the BCA reflects the continuing challenges for
Burgan-AS's earnings and franchise evolution. The rating agency
believes that the small and evolving nature of Burgan-AS's
franchise -- with low revenue diversification and high
concentration to the corporate/SME segments -- constrain its
ability to effectively develop its commercial leverage and
smoothly maneuver its franchises to readily meet the needs of the
domestic economy in Turkey's competitive banking environment
against the background of moderate economic growth.



The affirmation of Burgan-AS's Ba2/Not Prime GLC deposit ratings
reflects Moody's assumption of a very high probability of
parental support from the 99.26% majority shareholder, Burgan-
SAK. Moody's shareholder support assumption results in three
notches of rating uplift from Burgan-AS's BCA. According to
Moody's methodology, the BCA of a cross-border shareholder is
used when incorporating parental support into the subsidiary's
rating. The rating agency's very high shareholder support
assumption reflects Burgan-AS's very close franchise association
(in terms of branding, funding, senior management and strategic
fit) that Burgan-AS provides to the Burgan Group.

The stable outlook on Burgan-AS's deposit ratings reflects the
stable outlook on the BFSR of the bank and its parent Burgan-SAK.


The downgrade of Burgan-AS's standalone BFSR to E+ from D-,
equivalent to a BCA of b2 (formerly ba3), was triggered by a
combination of (1) very weak earnings, with reported quarterly
losses likely to continue into 2014, indicating challenges to
generate sufficient revenues and risk-adjusted returns ; (2)
Moody's expectation that the bank's marginal and less diversified
franchise (with niche corporate/SME and low retail segments
exposure) will benefit, to a lesser extent, from the growing
Turkish economy and the social mobility potential of its
population than the more diversified commercial banks. Even
though the bank will likely report an increase in its asset
volume and revenue base following the recent ownership change,
Moody's believes that the fierce competition amongst larger
Turkish banks with stronger balance sheets and a wider customer
reach are likely to further challenge the bank's future growth
plans, franchise evolution and profitability under its new owner

The stable outlook on Burgan-AS's standalone BFSR is supported by
(1) the bank's overall strong core Tier 1 at 12.8% (Basel II) as
of H1 2013; (2) availability of the long-term funds from its
parent which the bank has started to utilize toward new credits
that should contribute positively to its bottom-line earnings
while reducing the bank's sensitivity from the rising cost of
wholesale funds; and (3) Moody's expectation that a deeper
integration of Burgan-AS into the Burgan group should result in
cross-border synergies and commercial benefits, thus allowing the
bank to achieve sustainable profits over the medium term.


The stable outlook reflects the lack of upward pressure on
Burgan-AS's ratings. Positive pressure on the BFSR could develop
following material evidence of improvements in the bank's overall
franchise and profitability -- contributing positively to
internal capital generation capacity and capitalization --
without compromising risk appetite and underwriting standards. A
multi-notch raising of Burgan-SAK's standalone BCA could result
in an upgrade of Burgan-AS's deposit ratings.

Downward pressure could develop on Burgan-AS's BCA if significant
changes in the bank's strategy or management cause adverse
developments in its performance leading to (1) a further
prolonged deterioration in profitability; (2) poor asset quality;
(3) loss of market share; (4) capital growth failing to keep pace
with asset growth; and/or (5) tight liquidity indicators with
increased reliance on intergroup funds. Downwards pressure could
be exerted on the bank's deposits ratings if its parent's BCA
weakens; or if Moody's lowers its parental support assumptions,
leading to a reduction in the rating uplift incorporated in
Burgan-AS's ratings.

The principal methodology used in this rating was Global Banks
published in May 2013.

U N I T E D   K I N G D O M

CLARIS LIMITED: Moody's Lowers Rating on EUR43MM Notes to 'Caa1'
Moody's Investors Service has downgraded the rating of the
following notes issued by Claris Limited for the Millesime 2007-2

Issuer: Claris Limited Series 88 & 89 (Millesime 2007-2

    EUR43M (current outstanding Series 89/2007-1 Notes,
    Downgraded to Caa1 (sf); previously on Aug 26, 2011
    Downgraded to B1 (sf)

Moody's also affirmed the rating of the following notes issued by
Claris Limited:

Issuer: Claris Limited Series 88 & 89 (Millesime 2007-2

    EUR21M Series 88/2007-1 Notes, Affirmed Caa3 (sf); previously
    on Aug 26, 2011 Downgraded to Caa3 (sf)

This transaction is a synthetic CDO currently referencing a
portfolio of 56 European ABS assets.

Ratings Rationale

Moody's explained that the rating action taken on Sept. 4 is the
result of credit deterioration of the reference portfolio. Over
the last year, 19.65% of the exposures in the portfolio were
downgraded between 1 and 8 notches. In particular, IM PASTOR 3,
FTH A was downgraded from A3 to B2 in the past year, becoming the
second lowest rated asset in the portfolio
sector-triggers-rating-actions-on--PR_260528). According to
Moody's approximately 10.93% of the reference assets are rated in
the Ba/B category compared to only 1.96% in November 2012.
Approximately 37.5% of the assets are domiciled in Spain,
Portugal, Italy and Ireland, countries that have been affected by
the sovereign credit crisis.

In the process of determining the final rating, Moody's took into
account the results of sensitivity analyses:

(1) Lowest rated asset redeems in full -- Moody's considered a
    model run where the lowest rated asset was excluded in order
    to measure the portfolio credit quality of the remaining

(2) Sensitivity to WAL -- Moody's also considered model runs
    adjusting the WAL of the portfolio.

The corresponding outcomes of these sensitivity scenarios are
within two notches of the rating assigned on Sept. 4.

Moody's notes that this transaction is subject to a high level of
macroeconomic uncertainty, which could negatively impact the
ratings of the notes, as evidenced by uncertainties of credit
conditions in the general economy; especially as 37.5% of the
portfolio is exposed to obligors located in Spain, Portugal,
Italy and Ireland. The transaction's performance may also be
impacted either positively or negatively by general macro
uncertainties such as those surrounding future housing prices,
pace of residential mortgage foreclosures, loan modification and
refinancing, unemployment rates and interest rates.

The principal methodology used in this rating was Moody's
Approach to Rating SF CDOs published in May 2012.

In rating this transaction, Moody's used CDOROM to model the cash
flows and determine the loss for each tranche. The Moody's
CDOROM(TM) is a Monte Carlo simulation which takes the Moody's
default probabilities as input. Each SF CDO reference asset is
modelled individually with a standard multi-factor model
incorporating intra- and inter-industry correlation. The
correlation structure is based on a Gaussian copula. In each
Monte Carlo scenario, defaults are simulated. Losses on the
portfolio are then derived, and allocated to the notes in reverse
order of priority to derive the loss on the notes issued by the
Issuer. By repeating this process and averaging over the number
of simulations, an estimate of the expected loss borne by the
notes is derived. As such, Moody's analysis encompasses the
assessment of stressed scenarios.

In addition to the quantitative factors that are explicitly
modelled, qualitative factors are part of the rating committee
considerations. These qualitative factors include the structural
protections in each transaction, the recent deal performance in
the current market environment, the legal environment, specific
documentation features, the collateral manager's track record,
and the potential for selection bias in the portfolio. All
information available to rating committees, including
macroeconomic forecasts, input from other Moody's analytical
groups, market factors, and judgments regarding the nature and
severity of credit stress on the transactions, may influence the
final rating decision.

CO-OPERATIVE BANK: Ex-Boss Quits over Lloyds Deal Warning Snob
John Collingridge at The Scotsman reports that Neville
Richardson, former head of the struggling Co-operative Bank, said
he quit because superiors ignored his fears that a massive deal
to buy more than 630 branches from Lloyds would be a disaster.

Mr. Richardson told MPs he repeatedly warned Co-operative Group
bosses it was taking on far too much and the bank could collapse
-- before quitting over the issue in July 2011, The Scotsman

According to The Scotsman, Mr. Richardson insisted loans acquired
with the Britannia Building Society -- which he ran before it was
acquired by the Co-op in 2009 -- are not solely to blame for the
bank's woes.

He said former bosses -- including Peter Marks, the group chief
executive until May -- were determined to do the Lloyds deal,
dubbed Project Verde, The Scotsman relates.  But he said the
Co-op could have been another Northern Rock if the Lloyds deal
had gone ahead, The Scotsman notes.

Co-op has to plug a GBP1.5 billion black hole in its balance
sheet at the expense of bondholders, with hundreds of job losses
expected, The Scotsman discloses.  The UK government may still
have to step in and rescue the ailing lender, The Scotsman says.

According to The Scotsman, Mr. Richardson told the MPs on the
Treasury select committee that he raised his concerns with
Mr. Marks, chairman Len Wardle and deputy chairman Paul Flowers
on a number of occasions in 2010 and 2011.  In his first public
appearance since quitting, Mr. Richardson used parliamentary
privilege to break a confidentiality agreement he signed with the
Co-op, The Scotsman discloses.

The Scotsman relates that Mr. Richardson, who received a total
payout of GBP4.6 million on leaving the group, said it was "the
right deal at the wrong time."

According to The Scotsman, until late April, the Co-op was front-
runner to buy the Lloyds branches, which Mr. Marks claimed would
propel it into the "premier league of UK banking".

But its ambitions crumbled when shortly after the deal's collapse
the bank was hit by a ratings downgrade, The Scotsman notes. In
June, it announced plans to plug a capital gap, The Scotsman

Mr. Richardson, as cited by The Scotsman, said he warned in
July 2011 -- when the Co-op was still only toying with buying the
Lloyds branches -- that the group was taking on too much.

According to The Scotsman, he said the Co-op was risking
"failure" as it simultaneously attempted the Lloyds deal, a
multi-million pound IT overhaul, the sale of its life and savings
businesses and a project to fully integrate Co-op Financial
Services within the overall group.

He said he told his superiors that the business was "incapable"
of coping with all of this change at one time, The Scotsman

The Co-op has launched an independent probe into what went wrong
at the bank, and new management warned its turnaround will take
four years, The Scotsman discloses.

Sir Christopher Kelly will head an investigation into its
acquisition of Britannia and the failed Lloyds deal, The Scotsman

Co-op Bank -- part of the mutually owned food-to-funerals
conglomerate Co-operative Group -- traces its history back to
1872.  The bank gained prominence for specializing in ethical
investment.  It refuses to lend to companies that test their
products on animals, and its headquarters in Manchester is
powered by rapeseed oil grown on Co-operative Group farms.

Founded in 1863, the Co-op Group has more than six million
members, employs more than 100,000 people, and has turnover of
more than GBP13 billion.

                           *     *     *

As reported by the Troubled Company Reporter-Europe on May 13,
2013, Moody's Investors Service downgraded the deposit and senior
debt ratings of Co-operative Bank plc to Ba3/Not Prime from
A3/Prime 2, following its lowering of the bank's baseline credit
assessment (BCA) to b1 from baa1.  The equivalent standalone bank
financial strength rating (BFSR) is now E+ from C- previously.

HULL COUNCIL: Faces Potential Insolvency Process
Ian Walker at Debt Management Today reports that a struggling
council has been to have failed to collect tax and business rate
debts worth over GBP5 million a year, sparking fears over
potential insolvency proceedings.

Cash-strapped Hull Council had outstanding tax debts of
GBP2.9 million in the last fiscal year, with GBP2.52 million in
the previous year, and GBP2.86 million in2010/11, the report
discloses citing figures obtained by the Yorkshire Post.

Business rate debts also totalled exceptional amounts, with the
total reaching GBP2.62 million in the last financial year,
GBP2.47 million in 2011/12 and GBP1.98 million in 2010/11, the
report notes.

According to the report, the authority has moved to reassure the
public that it is pursuing historic debts, in spite of the fact
it must save more than GBP40 million by 2015/16.

However, actual levels of outstanding debt are likely to exceed
expectation, as the council declined to give figures for arrears
relating to the Business Improvement District levy, housing
rents, commercial rents, former tenant rent arrears, benefit
overpayments, parking charges, adult service care fees and other
debts such as unpaid fees and charges, the report adds.

LAPLAND NEW: Exec Banned For 10 Yrs For Inadequate Record Keeping
Victor Robert Mears, the director of Lapland New Forest Limited,
a company that traded as a Lapland style theme park from Matchams
Leisure Park in the New Forest has been disqualified from acting
as a director for ten years for failing to maintain, preserve or
deliver adequate accounting records.

The disqualification, which was made at Brighton County Court and
started on July 17, 2013, follows an investigation by the
Insolvency Service. It prevents Mr. Mears from acting as a
director of a limited company for ten years until July 2023.

Lapland New Forest Limited went into voluntary liquidation in
February 2009. The company had started ticket sales in
September 2008 with the park opening to visitors on Nov. 29,
2008. It was closed on Dec. 4, 2008, following a number of

The Insolvency Service investigation found that between Sept. 3,
2008 and Dec. 22, 2008, GBP1,283,056 was received into the
company bank account and GBP1,284,309 was paid out.

However, Mr. Mears failed to provide adequate books and records
to properly account for expenditure of GBP222,955.45 from the
bank account. Much of this money was drawn from the bank account
in cash amounts of GBP10,000, GBP15,000 and GBP20,000.

Under cross examination at trial Mr. Mears explained that the
majority of this cash was then paid to an individual linked to
the landlord of the park but that he did not obtain any receipts
nor did he keep any contemporaneous record of the dates or
amounts of such payments.

Commenting on the disqualification, Mark Bruce, a Chief Examiner
at the Insolvency Service who gave evidence at the trial, said:

"Directors of companies must maintain sufficient accounting
records that show and explain the company's transactions. Mr
Mears failed to do this and the volume of unexplained cash
expenditure in such a short trading lifetime was highly
suspicious. It required explanation supported by proof which Mr
Mears was unable to provide.

"The 10-year disqualification given in this case shows that the
court takes the failure to keep records seriously. Other
directors who fail to keep sufficient proof of their company's
expenditure, especially cash, should expect similar treatment by
the Insolvency Service."

PIXMANIA: Dixons Retail Opts to Offload Loss-Making Business
Denise Roland at The Telegraph reports that Dixons Retail has
paid EUR69 million to offload loss-making Internet retailer
PIXmania, just one year after taking full control of the

According to The Telegraph, the electrical retailer, which
operates Currys and PC World, is set to hand PIXmania to German
holding group mutares AG in a deal which involves Dixons
providing an additional EUR69 million (GBP58 million) of cash.

In offloading PIXmania, Dixons has avoided the prospect of
closing the business, which would have cost the group around
GBP90 million, The Telegraph says.

The deal requires negotiation with representatives of PIXmania's
1,200-strong workforce, the Telegraph notes.

In August last year, Dixons ramped up its stake in PIXmania from
77% to 99% in a bid to take "full day to day control of the
business", The Telegraph recounts.  At the time, Sebastian James,
chief executive, described PIXmania as "the heart of our very
successful UK multi-channel business", but acknowledged that the
loss-making firm faced "significant market headwinds", The
Telegraph relates.

PIXmania is a European internet retailer specializing in digital
photography and electronic goods.  It trades in 26 countries
through bespoke transactional websites.  While primarily focused
on the internet, PIXmania still maintains 17 showrooms in France,
Italy, Spain and Portugal.

SIGMA PAYROLL: Exec Gets Six-Year Ban Over GBP6MM Undeclared Tax
Jonathan Edward Shawyer, the director of Sigma Payroll Services
Limited, has been disqualified from acting as a company director
for six years for paying GBP6 million less tax than was owed to
the taxman.

The disqualification, which started on Aug. 19, 2013, follows an
investigation by the Insolvency Service.

Mr. Shawyer, 45, of Brickenden, Hertfordshire gave an undertaking
to the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills
that he will not act as a director of a limited company until
August 2019.

Sigma Payroll Services Limited entered voluntary liquidation on
June 23, 2010. The investigation found that Mr. Shawyer had
allowed the company to declare less VAT liability to HM Revenue &
Customs (HMRC) than it owed, in breach of its legal obligations
to submit accurate returns and payments.

The company had submitted tax returns for April 2009 - March 2010
declaring a total VAT liability of GBP497,341 which it then paid
in full. However, HMRC assessments, based on the company's bank
activity, showed this was GBP5,920,648 less than was expected.

Commenting on the disqualification, Mark Bruce, a Chief Examiner
in the Insolvency Service, said:

"When companies submit incorrect tax returns on time and pay the
amounts due immediately, it may take some considerable time for
the tax authorities to discover what is really due. This was such
a case where nearly GBP6m in tax was undeclared.

"Such behaviour introduces unfair competition in the market and
robs hardworking taxpayers of resources needed to run public

"The Insolvency Service rightly takes such blatant abuse of the
tax regime seriously and worthy of a significant disqualification

VPHASE PLC: Fails to Secure Funding; Appoints Administrators
Further to recent announcements, VPhase plc on Sept. 4 disclosed
that it has been unable to secure additional funding for the
Group and as such, is unable to continue to trade as a going
concern.  Consequently, the Company has appointed Dermot Power
and Patrick Alexander Lannagan of BDO LLP, 3 Hardman Street,
Manchester, M3 3AT as administrators of VPhase plc and its

The decision to appoint the administrators was taken after
careful consideration and having explored all options to raise
additional capital.  The Board would like to thank the Group's
employees, suppliers and customers for their hard work and
support throughout the Company's history.

The Directors will be working with the administrators to protect
the interest of creditors and to try and ensure that the business
is saved in part or as a whole and the administrators ask any
interested parties to contact them as a matter of urgency.

Trading in the Company's Ordinary Shares on AIM remains

VPhase plc -- is an energy efficiency
technology company.  The Company develops products that provide
energy efficiency solutions to certain identified problems in the
energy market.

* Plymouth Insolvency Rate Drop in July 2013
William Telford at Plymouth Herald reports that the number of
Plymouth companies becoming insolvent fell last month -- as a UK
decline in foundering firms is being seen as another positive
sign for the economy.

Figures for June, the most recently available, show that four
city businesses failed during July, which represents 0.08 per
cent of the total number of Plymouth firms, the report relates.

Plymouth Herald says this is a drop from eight during June,
representing 0.17 per cent of the business population, but a
slight rise from the three businesses that flopped in July last

So far this year, 38 Plymouth firms have become insolvent, the
worst months being March and June, with April, when just two hit
the skids, being the best, the report relays.

The statistics, from global information services company
Experian, show that for the wider South West, 119 businesses
became insolvent, representing 0.07 per cent of the total,
according to the report.

"The percentage of businesses failing in Plymouth in July 2013
are slightly higher than the average for the wider South West
region, but on a par with the national average across the UK,"
Plymouth Herald quotes a spokesman as saying.

The report notes that Experian's latest Business Insolvency Index
reveals positive news for the UK economy as the overall business
insolvency rate fell to 0.08 per cent in July from 0.09 per cent
in July.

This is the third consecutive month the rate has fallen year-on-
year -- the first time this has happened since 2010, the report


* Moody's: Global Auto Manufacturers' Industry Outlook Stable
Stronger-than-expected demand from China is likely to boost sales
for car manufacturers to 4.8% in 2014, keeping the global sector
outlook stable over the next 12-18 months, says Moody's Investors
Service in its latest Industry Outlook on the sector published on
Sept. 4. The global automotive manufacturers' industry outlook
has been stable since September 2011.

The new report, titled "Global Automotive Manufacturers: Chinese
Demand Fuels Uptick in Sales Growth Forecast", is now available

"We anticipate a mild increase in sales growth to 4.8% for 2014
from our newly revised forecast of 3.2% for 2013, mainly because
of higher-than-expected demand in China," said Falk Frey, Moody's
Senior Vice President and author of the report. "As Chinese car
market growth continues to be above GDP growth rates, we have
revised upward our forecast for light vehicle demand growth to
10% from our January expectation of 7% growth for both 2013 and

European light vehicle sales expectations are unchanged, although
individual country performance varies. Moody's continues to
forecast that European light vehicles sales will decline 5.0%
year on year in 2013. Moody's lower expectations for France and
Italy are offset by stronger-than-expected sales volumes in the
UK. According to the report, western European light vehicle
demand will have reached a trough in 2013 and will rebound by 3%
in 2014, which is lower than Moody's previous forecast of a 5%
increase in demand. However, Moody's does not anticipating this
signaling an upward trend.

Outside Europe, Moody's notes rising risks for light vehicle
demand, especially in Brazil and Russia. Light vehicle demand in
Brazil is losing momentum in the face of rising interest rates,
high inflation and an increasing indebtedness of private
households. European Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) need
these markets in order to mitigate losses in Western Europe.

Manufacturers' profit margins continue to diverge. The margins of
Renault S.A. (Ba1 stable), Peugeot S.A., or PSA (B1 negative) and
Fiat S.p.A. (Ba3 negative) will remain under pressure because of
overcapacity and low demand in Western Europe. This will also
continue to weigh on German OEMs' margins, although their margins
remain more solid. Japanese manufacturers' margins will continue
to recover from their lows after the 2011 earthquake and tsunami,
supported by a weakening yen that should also fuel market share
gains. Moody's expects US manufacturers will retain similar
margins in the next 12-18 months but tougher competition, slower
US growth and continued, albeit reduced, losses in Europe may
cause them to erode slightly.

Moody's would consider revising the outlook to positive if the
rating agency's global light vehicle growth forecast exceeds 5%
in the next two years. This assumes that capacity would not
outgrow demand and that utilization rates and pricing remained
firm, especially in Europe. Moody's would revise the outlook to
negative if global volume growth falls below 2%, net pricing
declines and capacity utilization rates deteriorate.

* Moody's Says Global Reinsurance Industry's Outlook Stable
The global reinsurance industry's stable outlook reflects its
resilience in the face of a challenging operating environment,
says Moody's Investors Service in a new Industry Outlook
published on Sept. 4. It also reflects continued underwriting
discipline and improvements in risk management, as well as firmer
pricing in some primary insurance markets.

The report, "Global Reinsurance Outlook" is now available on

Moody's notes, however, that the industry faces a number of
challenges, including: continued low interest rates, tepid demand
given sluggish economic conditions in North America and Europe,
and, above all, increased competition from alternative markets.

Over the past year, an estimated US$10 billion of new alternative
capital has entered the industry, raising the total amount to
approximately US$44 billion. This influx of capital has had a
major impact on current reinsurance market dynamics and pressured
property cat pricing, with June/July renewals in the US down 10%-

On balance however, Moody's believes that the adverse effect of
any headwinds should remain fairly contained as reinsurers
navigate the currently challenging environment and adapt to the
evolving marketplace for insurance risk transfer.

"Key strengths of the sector are its resilience and underwriting
discipline. Despite immense insured catastrophe losses in 2011
and 2012, and a low interest rate environment that has slashed
investment income, the reinsurance sector remained profitable and
increased its equity capital", states James Eck, Vice President -
Senior Credit Officer at Moody's. "While a continued inflow of
alternative capital has the potential to alter the core business
model of reinsurers, many firms in the sector have been preparing
for this eventuality for years through their participation in
sidecars and the insurance-linked securities market", adds Mr.

Moody's expects that reinsurers with large capital bases, a high
degree of diversification and an ability to leverage both
traditional and third-party capital will be best positioned going

* BOOK REVIEW: A Legal History of Money in the United States

Author: James Willard Hurst
Publisher: Beard Books
Paperback: US$34.95
Review by Gail Owens Hoelscher
Order your personal copy today and one for a colleague at

This book chronicles the legal elements of the history of the
system of money in the United States from 1774 to 1970. It
originated as a series of lectures given by James Hurst at the
University of Nebraska in 1973. Mr. Hurst is quick to say that
he , as a historian of the law, took care in this book not to
make his own judgments on matters outside the law. Rather, he
conducted an exhaustive literature review of economics, economic
history, and banking to recount the development of law over the
operations of money. He attempted to "borrow the opinions of
qualified specialists outside the law in order to provide a
meaningful context in which to appraise what the law has done or
failed to do."

Mr. Hurst define money, for the purposes of this books, as "a
distinct institutional instrument employed primarily in
allocating scarce economic resources, mainly through government
and market processes," and not shorthand for economic, social,
or political power held through command of economic assets."
From the beginning, public and legal policy in the U.S. centered
on the definition of legitimate uses of both law affecting
money, and allocation of power over money among official
agencies, both federal and state. The foundations of monetary
policy were laid between 1774 and 1788. Initially, individual
state legislatures and the Continental Congress issued paper
currency in the form of bills of credit. The Constitutional
Convention later determined that ultimate control of the money
supply should be at the federal level. Other issues were not
clearly defined and were left to be determined by events.

The author describes how law was used to create and maintain a
system of money capable of servicing the flow of resource
allocations in an economy of broadly dispersed public and
private decision making. Law defined standard money units and
made those units acceptable for use in conducting transactions.
Over time, adjustment of the money supply was recognized as a
legitimate concern of law. Private banks were delegated
expansive monetary action powers throughout the 1900s and
private markets for gold and silver were allowed to affect the
money supply until 1933-34. Although the Federal Reserve Act
was not aimed clearly at managing money for goals of major
economic adjustment, it set precedents by devaluing the dollar
and restricting the use of gold.

Mr. Hurst devotes a large part of his book to key issues of
monetary policy involving the distribution of power over money
between the nation and the states, between legal and market
processes, and among major agencies of the government. Until
about 1860, all major branches of government shared in making
monetary policy, with states playing a large role. Between 1908
and 1970, monetary policy became firmly centralized at the
national level, and separation or powers questions arose between
the Federal Reserve Board, the White House (The Council of
Economic Advisors), and the Treasury.

The book was an enormous undertaking and its research
exhaustive. It includes 18 pages of sources cited and 90 pages
of footnotes. Each era of American legal history is treated
comprehensively. The book makes fascinating reading for those
interested in the cause and effect relationship between legal
processes and economic processes and t hose concerned with
public administration and the separation of powers.
James Willard Hurst (1910-1997) is widely regarded as the
grandfather of American legal history. He graduated from
Harvard Law School in 1935 and taught at the University of
Wisconsin-Madison for 44 years.


Monday's edition of the TCR delivers a list of indicative prices
for bond issues that reportedly trade well below par.  Prices are
obtained by TCR editors from a variety of outside sources during
the prior week we think are reliable.  Those sources may not,
however, be complete or accurate.  The Monday Bond Pricing table
is compiled on the Friday prior to publication.  Prices reported
are not intended to reflect actual trades.  Prices for actual
trades are probably different.  Our objective is to share
information, not make markets in publicly traded securities.
Nothing in the TCR constitutes an offer or solicitation to buy or
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public debt and equity securities about which we report.

Each Tuesday edition of the TCR contains a list of companies with
insolvent balance sheets whose shares trade higher than US$3 per
share in public markets.  At first glance, this list may look
like the definitive compilation of stocks that are ideal to sell
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historical cost net of depreciation may understate the true value
of a firm's assets.  A company may establish reserves on its
balance sheet for liabilities that may never materialize.  The
prices at which equity securities trade in public market are
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A list of Meetings, Conferences and Seminars appears in each
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Each Friday's edition of the TCR includes a review about a book
of interest to troubled company professionals.  All titles are
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S U B S C R I P T I O N   I N F O R M A T I O N

Troubled Company Reporter-Europe is a daily newsletter co-
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Valerie U. Pascual, Marites O. Claro, Rousel Elaine T. Fernandez,
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