Business and City in Brief

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The Independent Online
MAXWELL OBJECTS TO PETITION

A bankruptcy petition is to be presented against Ian Maxwell in the next two days, despite his objection that his appeal against the pounds 500,000 damages judgment on which the petition is based has yet to be decided.

The appeal is to be heard on 10 February, and if Mr Maxwell loses it he will follow his brother, Kevin, into bankruptcy.

BERLITZ MERGER

Berlitz International said a court order severing its connection with the bankrupt Maxwell Communications Corporation cleared the way for its pending merger with Kukutake Publishing of Japan on 8 February.

OIL PRICE SURGE

A US senator's proposal for an oil import fee, setting a dollars 25-a- barrel floor on crude, caused a rush on world markets. New York US light crude futures rose dollars 1.09 per barrel to dollars 20.75, but closed at dollars 20.37, up 71 cents.

HOOVER THREAT

The French government threatened legal action to prevent Hoover, the US vacuum cleaner firm, from shifting 400 jobs from Dijon to Scotland.

Hamish McRae, page 23

BANK AXES 112

Barclays Bank is cutting 112 engineering jobs across the UK and replacing them with privately contracted staff. Bifu, the finance union, said industrial action was 'a serious option'.

BOOST FOR CUNARD

Trafalgar House, in a joint venture with the EffJohn Group, has formed Cunard Crown, which is expected to lift Cunard berth sales 40 per cent to more than 7,000.

RBS SALE

Royal Bank of Scotland's long-awaited sale of 90 per cent of its merchant banking subsidiary, Charterhouse, is expected in the next few days. BHF, the German bank, and Credit Commercial de France are expected to buy 45 per cent each.

UK NETS POUNDS 1.8bn

The UK received pounds 1.8bn in loans last year from the European Investment Bank - almost 15 per cent of the total.

AT&T PROFITS

AT&T, the American telecom giant, reported a dollars 1bn profit for the final quarter of 1992 and annual earnings of dollars 3.8bn.

BEER TAX PLEA

The UK Brewers' Society appealed to the Government to cut excise duty as it released figures showing beer production fell 3.6 per cent in 1991/2.

AIRLINES DOWN

Two of America's three big transatlantic carriers reported further huge losses for the final quarter of 1992. United lost dollars 224m and Delta dollars 233m.

150m POUNDS BOND ISSUE

(First Edition)

Royal Bank of Scotland launched a pounds 150m Eurosterling bond issue at a price of 99.87 per cent, carrying a coupon of 10.5 per cent and maturing in 2013.

WORLD MARKETS

New York: Reports of stronger economic growth boosted blue chips and by the close the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 14.86 points at 3,306.25.

Tokyo: On the highest volume of the year the Nikkei average soared 553.73 to 17,063.41.

Hong Kong: China's stance against the Patten political reform plan sent the Hang Seng tumbling 142.83 to 5,797.06.

Sydney: Deepening worries over the outlook for metal prices helped to lower the All Ordinaries index 8.1 to 1,526.7.

Johannesburg: Gold shares were sharply better and industrials firmer. The overall index added nine points to 3,415.

Paris: A limited late rally after a day disrupted by a car workers' demonstration left the CAC-40 3.29 higher at 1,780.64.

Frankfurt: Prices ended slightly higher in lacklustre trade. The DAX index gained 5.52 points to close at 1,567.84.

Milan: Insurers pulled the MIB back from early lows to end 0.57 per cent easier at 1,055.

London: Report, page 25.

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