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SAATCHI HIT BY REDUNDANCY COSTS

Shares in Saatchi & Saatchi, the advertising agency, fell 23p to 157p when it warned that it would have to provide an extra pounds 10m for redundancy costs following the loss of two key US accounts and a gloomier forecast of revenue growth.

The costs will, however, be offset by a pounds 4m write-back of property provisions, and departure from its Berkeley Square head office, which will save pounds 1.2m.

Bottom Line, page 34

HALIFAX CUTS RATE

Halifax Building Society said it would cut its mortgage rate to 7.64 per cent from 7.99 per cent. The cut takes effect immediately for new borrowers and from 1 January for existing borrowers. When the Bank of England lowered base rates to 5.5 per cent from 6.0 per cent two weeks ago, Halifax indicated it would wait until after the Budget on 30 November before deciding on its mortgage rates. Cheltenham & Gloucester has also cut its mortgage rate to 7.64 per cent from 7.99 per cent.

BP PULLS PLAN

BP has suspended its plan to withdraw from the branded gasoline retail market in California. The company said it had been unable to sell its properties at full value in the market.

HAULAGE PERMITS

The Department of Transport said that an increase in the UK's quota of international road haulage permits means that some are still available for 1994. The permits allow unlimited travel to and through all 29 member countries of the European Conference of Ministers of Transport, except Austria and Italy.

GERMAN RISE PREDICTED

Western German industrial production will rise by 1 per cent in 1994 after a predicted drop of 7.5 per cent this year and a decrease of 2 per cent in 1992, the Institute for Economic Research forecast. In its latest report, the institute said that 'the sharpest falls in industrial production since the Second World War' in western Germany were over. It said overall production had risen slightly since early this year, driven by growth in demand from abroad and in Germany.

IMF FORECAST

The International Monetary Fund said it expects European interest rates to fall further, and believes there is room for a reduction in the risk premium for Italy. The comment was in a letter to the Italian Treasury released yesterday.

CARGO FINES WARNING

The European Commission is warning members of the TransAtlantic Agreement cargo-shipping alliance that they may face fines for breaches of EC anti- trust laws, a spokesman said.

WORLD MARKETS

NEW YORK: Weakness in high- technology shares prevented the market from ending the session in record territory. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 6.14 points higher at 3,710.22.

BRUSSELS: The BEL 20 index closed up 14.75 points at 1,438.42.

FRANKFURT: Prices closed mostly lower on late profit-taking. The DAX index fell 1.81 to 2,118.80.

MILAN: Sentiment was positive on the left's victories in Sunday's municipal elections. The Mibtel index gained 324 points to 10,013.

PARIS: The CAC-40 index lost 1.66 points to 2,186.74 in relatively quiet trading.

HONG KONG: Prices rose sharply, boosted by selective buying by retail investors. The Hang Seng index gained 315.34 points, its largest single-day gain in three weeks, to close at 9,609.69.

TOKYO: Sentiment was hit by fears that the government does not plan an early economic stimulus package. The Nikkei 225 index closed down 618.97 points at 16,840.38.

SYDNEY: Shares closed higher but off their highs. The All Ordinaries index was up 6.3 points at 2,053.7.

LONDON: Report, page 32.

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