The Business Matrix: Wednesday 2 July 2014


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Tata to shed 400 jobs in Port Talbot

Tata is to axe 400 jobs at its steel-making plant in Port Talbot. The company’s European chief executive, Karl Koehler, said the move was influenced by the UK’s high businesses rates and energy costs. The jobs will go at Tata’s strip products business, which makes sheets of steel for cans, cars, roofing and fridges.

Twitter appoints new finance chief

Twitter has named Anthony Noto, a former Goldman Sachs executive who led its IPO last year, as its chief financial officer. The previous CFO, Mike Gupta, will be senior vice-president of strategic investments. Both Mr Gupta, who joined Twitter in 2012 from Zynga, and Mr Noto will take up their new roles within 30 days.

BoE considered more loan curbs

The Bank of England considered even tougher curbs on mortgage lending at its June meeting, the Financial Policy Committee’s minutes revealed. The FPC looked at capping the proportion of mortgages below the 4.5 loan-to-income ratio. It said commercial banks were too weak to hold bigger counter-cyclical buffers.

GM recalls eight million more cars

The US car-maker General Motors has recalled another 8.23 million vehicles over an ignition switch fault, bringing the total number recalled this year to 29 million. The latest recalled vehicles were linked by the firm to three deaths. GM has acknowledged at least 16 fatalities linked to cars with switch-related problems.

HP steps up $9bn Autonomy fight

Former Autonomy executives face an escalation of hostilities with Hewlett-Packard after the US computer giant’s investors agreed to join legal action over the acquisition of Autonomy that left HP with huge losses. HP bought Cambridge-based Autonomy for $11.1bn (£6.5bn) but later took an $8.8bn writedown.

Trimming the fat lifts Greggs’ profit

Shares in sandwich-to-sausage roll specialist Greggs rose after “aggressive pruning” of its nationwide chain and an increase in the amount of hot food it sells helped to deliver a piping hot performance. The bakery chain said first-half sales at shops open for more than a year had risen by 3.2 per cent.

Standard Life in jobs shake-up

Standard Life has completed its £390m takeover of Ignis Asset Management in a move that could lead to job cuts. Ignis, which was owned by Phoenix Group, employs about 250 people in Glasgow and a further 100 in London. Standard Life wants to make £50m of savings.

FCA bans Espirito short-selling

The Financial Conduct Authority has banned short-selling of Banco Espirito Santo and Espirito Santo Financial in London after their shares plunged. It follows a similar move in Portgual amid concerns for the health of their parent group, Espirito Santo International.

US fines Goldman unit $800,000

Wall Street regulators have fined a unit of Goldman Sachs $800,000 (£466,000) for failing to ensure clients using its “dark pool” trading platform received the best prices available on stock trades. The bank did not admit or deny the charges.

Unemployment static at 11.6%

Unemployment in the eurozone was frozen in May, with the jobless rate remaining at 11.6 per cent, according to Eurostat. Joblessness rose slightly in Ireland to 12 per cent but stayed at 5.1 per cent in Germany and 10.1 per cent in France.