Morning in brief: Royal Dutch Shell makes £994m bid for Cove Energy

Markets
Asian stocks make only modest gains while the euro pulls back from the highs of recent weeks as doubts about the long-term future of Greece’s second bailout plague investors, according to Reuters.

Companies
British multinational bank HSBC prepares to sell new shares to fund the non-deferred element of bonuses worth more than £50,000 after agreeing the structure with the Financial Services Authority, the Telegraph reports.

Oil giant Royal Dutch Shell makes an offer to buy African explorer Cove Energy for £994m, according to Bloomberg. Cove’s board says it expects to accept the offer.

UK
The Confederation of British Industry calls on the government to use “targeted and modest” tax cuts to offer a £500m boost to businesses in its March 21 Budget, the BBC says.