Don't miss




Ziad Takieddine, international businessman

Read more


Sarkozy's TV plea of innocence

Read more


Sarkozy and Gaddafi: The Case Against France's Former President

Read more


France unveils tough new bill to tackle sexual harassment

Read more


Hats off: Photographer Claude Azoulay's stylish, candid snaps on show

Read more


Will the Indian city of Bangalore run out of water?

Read more


Emma Gonzalez, a US teen activist against gun violence

Read more


104 Dapchi schoolgirls freed by Boko Haram

Read more


Spoof children's book about Mike Pence's gay bunny tops Amazon bestsellers

Read more


An overview of the stories making the French and international newspaper headlines. From Monday to Friday live at 7.20 am and 9.20 am Paris time.

Latest update : 2011-08-12

Financial crisis: errors creep in

How much impact did a Mail on Sunday piece have on Société Générale's share tumble earlier this week? The French press leads on the economic turmoil as French banks feel the heat, slapping a triple zero rating on the credit ratings agencies along the way. That's the focus for Friday, 12th August, 2011.

France’s front pages cover the market turmoil, with France’s banks in the line of fire. La Tribune and Le Figaro both lead on that. Société Générale has been the worst affected by the rollercoaster ride. It was obliged this week to deny its financial stability was at risk. As James Creedon reported in our Media Watch slot on Thursday, the UK’s Mail on Sunday may have inadvertently caused Société Générale’s stocks to plummet when it said the bank was in a 'perilous' state and possibly on the 'brink of disaster'. It’s been suggested the Mail on Sunday picked that up from a “Summer Fiction Series” in Le Monde, in which Le Monde imagines a situation in 2012 where the euro might have collapsed.

L’ points out that the bank's share value sank on Wednesday even after the Mail on Sunday issued an apology. It adds that an accumulation of bad news for Société Générale gave the rumour credibility.

Le Figaro's coverage includes a piece entitled: "When Twitter and the craziest rumours steer the markets". It reports that a series of tweets on Wednesday afternoon raised the prospect of a Soc Gen bust over the space of a few hours, so much so that it seemed probable. As a consequence, the bank lost more than 20% of its share value.

The Journal du Dimanche website asks Le Monde whether it has been in touch with the Mail on Sunday, which replies that all will be revealed in its Saturday edition. Le Monde, in the interview, says it had no way of knowing in May, when it prepared the Summer Fiction series, that its catastrophic scenario could cause crossed wires just weeks later.

The left-wing paper Libération headlines “Triple Zero”. It has a two-page report into what it says is the hidden face of the credit ratings agencies "panicking the planet". It says the analysts working for them are “eggheads” who work to speed, more so than analysts at the IMF and World Bank. And it quotes an economist saying Standard & Poor’s is more focused on short-term economic shifts, which explains why it changes its ratings more often than the other two (Moody's and Fitch). The paper reports that workloads have doubled for the credit ratings' agencies. There is under-staffing, and errors creep in.




2018-03-22 Facebook

Spoof children's book about Mike Pence's gay bunny tops Amazon bestsellers

INTERNATIONAL PAPERS - Thursday, March 22, 2018: Mark Zuckerberg's slow apology for the Facebook data scandal is getting few likes in the press. An "inevitable mess," says one...

Read more

2018-03-22 Nicolas Sarkozy

May 1968: 'It was a revolt against capitalism'

FRENCH PAPERS - Thursday, March 22, 2018: "Things are getting serious for the former president," the Huffington Post writes, after Nicolas Sarkozy is placed under formal...

Read more

2018-03-21 Nicolas Sarkozy

Where is Mark Zuckerberg? Tech mogul stays mum on data breach scandal

IN THE WORLD PAPERS - Wednesday, March 21: We look at reactions in the international press to former French president Nicolas Sarkozy's police custody. Also, where is Facebook...

Read more

2018-03-21 Yemen

The ghosts of Gaddafi: Sarkozy in police custody over campaign financing

IN THE FRENCH PAPERS - Wednesday, March 21: Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy is in police custody over allegations of illegal Libyan financing of his 2007 presidential...

Read more

2018-03-20 Prince Salman of Saudia Arabia

Smile! It's International Happiness Day!

IN THE WORLD PAPERS – Tuesday, March 20: We look at reactions from the US and Arab press as Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman embarks on a three-week trip. Meanwhile, a...

Read more