Top of the form

SHARES in Fisons, the drugs company, spurted 67.5p to 264.5p after Rhone- Poulenc Rorer pounced with a pounds 1.7bn hostile bid.


MDIS, the computer services group, fell 19p to 70p after appalling the stock market with a third profits warning in less than a year (see above).

Greasy pole (up)

TERRY MAHER, the outspoken entrepreneur who was ousted two years ago from Pentos, the then Dillons and Rymans group, is planning a comeback. The first branch of Maher The Bookseller is due to open in November.

Greasy pole (down)

TONY BRAK, the public affairs co-ordinator for Shell International, will take early retirement. Shell denied his departure had anything to do with the Brent Spar fiasco.

Nice little earner

JOHN Clare, chief executive of Dixons Group, got a 25 per cent pay rise to pounds 402,000. His boss, Stanley Kalms, got a 12 per cent rise to pounds 669,000.

Bum deal

INDIVIDUAL investors got kicked twice. The Stock Exchange said it was removing a rule that forces large flotations to offer shares to the public and Crest, the new settlement scheme, revealed high transaction fees.

Sound bite

"THESE figures are a disaster for the unemployed and their families. They indicate the Government's much-vaunted economic recovery is no more than a dead fat cat's bounce." - Labour spokesman Ian MacCartney after unemployment rose for the first time in two years.

Corporate scallywag

COMPANY directors are being disqualified at double the pace of a year ago under a crackdown by the Insolvency Service. Some 1,400 applications are before the courts for offences such as misusing National Insurance Contributions funds.

Under attack

ANGRY gardeners stormed the annual meeting of Southern Water to complain about the hosepipe ban caused by hot dry weather and the utility company's inability to stop leaks from its mains.

Product launch

RANK Organisation announced plans for a pounds 2bn resort in Florida with Seagram Company's MCA film studio. To be called Universal's Islands of Adventure, it will have five themed islands, including one based on Stephen Spielberg's Jurassic Park.

Place your bets

ODDS of A level results setting a new record level of passes in 1996? Ladbrokes is quoting 4 to1 on.