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DEC invests pounds 90m in Scotland

Digital Equipment Corporation, the US computer group, is investing pounds 90m in its factories in Scotland. The company, which has manufacturing sites in Ayr and South Queensferry, said that the Scottish factories had helped DEC through one of the worst recessions the industry had seen.

DEC has recruited 800 people at Ayr and Queensferry in the last year, bringing the workforce to 2,000.

More Lloyd's writs

Lloyd's names belonging to Rose Thomson Young syndicate 255 action group have served a writ against their agents for negligence. It is the third 'LMX spiral' action group, after Gooda Walker and Feltrim, to begin litigation against its agents.

Coats wins prize

Coats Viyella, the international fabrics and precision engineering company, is the winner of the annual award for financial reporting presented by the London Stock Exchange and the English, Scottish and Irish institutes of chartered accountants.

China attracts dollars 91m

Barclays de Zoete Wedd Securities has raised dollars 91m to invest in China's Guangdong province, including a dollars 10m commitment from the Guangdong government. Guangdong Development Fund will be listed in London. BZW has already placed dollars 81m of shares, and is seeking to place a further dollars 9m.

De Beers accused

A federal grand jury in Columbus, Ohio, charged De Beers and General Electric Co, a GE employee, a former De Beers employee and 'other unnamed co- conspirators' with violating US anti-trust laws by conspiring to fix worldwide prices of industrial diamonds in 1991 and 1992.

French output falls

French industrial output fell by a seasonally adjusted 0.7 per cent in December, the national statistics office Insee said. The decline was mostly due to a 4.2 per cent drop in the volatile energy component. Manufacturing output was up 0.5 per cent in December and higher for the third month in a row.

Stop pay plea

The Manufacturing Science and Finance Union urged 20 companies to stop giving money to the Conservative Party. It is asking them to ballot shareholders and workers. Companies approached include Allied-Lyons, GKN, Hanson, Legal and General, Lucas, Rolls-Royce, Rothmans International, Tate and Lyle and United Biscuits.

Lyons coffee sold

Lyons Tetley, part of Allied-Lyons, the food and drink company, has sold its Lyons Original, Lyons Continental and Lyons World of Coffees roast and ground coffee brands to the Finnish-owned Paulig UK.

World Markets

New York: Sharply higher interest rates and fears that the Fed may tighten further sent the Dow Jones Average reeling 35.18 points lower to 3,887.46.

Tokyo: Prospects of a higher yen and a trade war with the US kept investors sidelined. The Nikkei 225 index edged up 28.21 to 18,959.60.

Hong Kong: Selective demand for blue chips lifted the Hang Seng index 47 to 10,833.

Frankfurt: Profit-taking trimmed sharp earlier gains as prices consolidated after Thursday's lower discount rates, leaving the DAX index 23.25 ahead at 2,151.97.

Sydney: Weakness on Wall Street depressed the All Ordinaries index 17.7 to 2,223.2.

Zurich: Uncertainty over interest rates lowered the SMI index 46.5 to 3,025.9.

Madrid: The general index lost 2.52 points to 345.46.

Paris: Steep falls in the bond market triggered a 29.40-point fall in the CAC-40 index to 2,251.78.

London: Report, page 19.