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The Independent Online
AIRTOURS LIKELY TO RAISE BID

Airtours is expected to increase its hostile pounds 225m bid for Owners Abroad this week. Thomas Cook is rumoured to be on the brink of mounting a rival bid to the 115p- per-share Airtours offer.

Thomas Cook, owned by Westdeutsche Landesbank, has commercial links with Owners Abroad. On Friday, Owners' share price rose to 131p.

ICI JOBS

ICI denied reports that it plans to cut 25,000 jobs after the demerger of Zeneca, its pharmaceuticals arm. A spokesman for the company, which last week announced 9,000 job losses, said: 'Those are not ICI's figures and not ICI's plans. There is no hidden agenda.'

VIRGIN TALKS

The prolonged talks between Virgin and BA will resume today in an attempt to resolve the dirty tricks affair. Virgin has threatened further legal action if the two companies fail to agree a solution.

GREEN SHOOTS

Green investment in ethical funds totals pounds 730m across Europe, including the UK, according to Jupiter Tyndall Merlin. On the Continent the value has risen sixfold to pounds 334m in five years.

PENSION THREAT

Legislation to improve pension benefits may be counterproductive, leading firms to reduce their funding of schemes, according to a survey by the magazine Financial Director.

TODAY: 1.3.93

Monetary statistics, January.

Finals: ASW Holdings, French Property Trust, Lilleshall, TR High Income Trust.

Annual meetings: Alvis, Dewhurst.

TOMORROW: 2.3.93

UK Reserves, February.

Interims: Hays, Norex, Paramount, Pifco Holdings, Raine, William Sinclair.

Finals: Abbey National, Allied Irish Bank, J Billam, Fisons, General Accident Fire, Grafton Grp, Harrington Kilbride, Instem, Kalon Grp, Pacer Systems, Serco Grp, Vivat Holdings.

Annual meeting: Bradstock Group.

WEDNESDAY: 3.3.93

Overseas travel and tourism, December; advance energy statistics, January.

Interims: Fleming Emerging Markets, SR Gent, Link Printing Tec.

Finals: BWD Securities, BICC, Bilston & Battersea, Brent Chemicals International, Courtaulds Textiles, T Cowie, CRH, Grosvenor Development Capital, Guardian Royal Exchange, Metal Bulletin, Midland Bank, Radius, Stat-Plus Group, TR High Income Trust, Trans World Communications.

Annual meetings: Blick, Euro Disney.

THURSDAY: 4.3.92

Interims: Brierley Inv, Cons Plantations, Galliford, Intereurope Technology Services, Renishaw.

Finals: Anglo American Industrial Corp, Barclays Bank, Boddington Grp, TF & JH Braime Holdings, Ferry Pickering, Govett & Co, Hambro Countrywide, Ladbroke Grp, Lloyds Smaller Co Trust, MTL Instruments, Pentos, Philips Electronics NV, Sema Group, Sumit, Wessanen (Konink), Williams Holdings, Unidare.

Annual meeting: Chiltern Radio.

FRIDAY: 5.3.93

Housing starts and completions, January.

Interims: British Data Management.

Finals: Latin American Investment Trust, Murray European Investment Trust.

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