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The Business Matrix: Friday 25 November 2011

 

EDF seeks consent for new nuke plant

EDF Energy has passed the first stage of approvals to build a third nuclear power station at its Hinkley Point plant in Somerset, pictured left. The project will be open to public consultation before a final decision is made. Ministers have identified eight sites as possible locations for new nuclear power stations. If approved, the EDF plant could open in 2020.

Young’s profits from Geronimo

The pub company Young’s & Co said half-year profits rose 10.5 per cent to £12.5m after it benefited from last December’s £60m acquisition of Geronimo Inns, good trading in its existing pub estate and strong growth in hotels’ profit. The company raised its dividend paid to shareholders by 5 per cent, the 15th consecutive year it has risen.

First-time buyers becoming scarcer

The proportion of first-time buyers in the housing market has fallen to its lowest point in nearly three years, according to a National Association of Estate Agents. The NAEA found that 16 per cent of all property sales last month were to first time buyers, compared with 22 per cent in September.

Whitechapel rail deal worth £110m

A joint venture involving the construction firms Morgan Sindall, Balfour Beatty and Vinci has secured a London Crossrail contract worth £110m at Whitechapel station. Work demolishing and rebuilding the station is due to commence in January and complete in 2018.

Families ‘need £24,600 to get by’

Families with two or more children need to bring home £24,600 a year just to get by, due to “astronomical” living costs, research from Skipton Financial Services has found. The sum includes bills for essentials such as paying the mortgage or rent, food, clothes and phones. A basic rate tax payer would need to earn £32,702 to take home the amount needed.

Future hit by losses in America

A resilient UK performance at magazine and digital publisher Future has been overshadowed by significant losses in the US, where the company plans to reduce its scale and return to profitability by 2013. The publisher of Official Xbox Magazine reported losses of £18m, compared with profits of £5.6m a year earlier.

First-time buyers becoming scarcer

The proportion of first-time buyers in the housing market has fallen to its lowest point in nearly three years, according to a National Association of Estate Agents. The NAEA found that 16 per cent of all property sales last month were to first time buyers, compared with 22 per cent in September.

Whitechapel rail deal worth £110m

A joint venture involving the construction firms Morgan Sindall, Balfour Beatty and Vinci has secured a London Crossrail contract worth £110m at Whitechapel station. Work demolishing and rebuilding the station is due to commence in January and complete in 2018.

Families ‘need £24,600 to get by’

Families with two or more children need to bring home £24,600 a year just to get by, due to “astronomical” living costs, research from Skipton Financial Services has found. The sum includes bills for essentials such as paying the mortgage or rent, food, clothes and phones. A basic rate tax payer would need to earn £32,702 to take home the amount needed.

Future hit by losses in America

A resilient UK performance at magazine and digital publisher Future has been overshadowed by significant losses in the US, where the company plans to reduce its scale and return to profitability by 2013. The publisher of Official Xbox Magazine reported losses of £18m, compared with profits of £5.6m a year earlier.

Internet deals boost PayPoint

The electronic payments firm PayPoint said it processed 292 million transactions in the six months to 25 September, up 9 per cent on a year earlier and helping its profits to rise 9 per cent to £16m. There were five million fewer UK mobile phone top-ups in the period but this was offset by growth in internet payments.

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