Business and City in Brief

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Engineers' pay tops inflation

Salaries for chartered engineers have risen 7.2 per cent more than inflation over the past three years and 2.4 per cent more than the average earnings index, according to the Engineering Council.

Denis Filer, director-general of the council, said 'industry and employers in general are now paying salaries which reflect the value of engineers'.

Citicorp scrutiny Citicorp will not make any 'significant' acquisitions, or increase its assets without prior approval from US federal banking regulators, according to information released to investors. America's largest bank made the disclosure as part of a dollars 650m (pounds 378m) issue of preferred stock.

Visual phones

Fifty firms in six European countries have started experimenting with visiophone, a telephone with a screen and camera that allows parties to see each other as they speak. The countries taking part are Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands and Norway.

Fimbra warning

Fimbra, the regulator for independent financial advisers, has warned people against doing business with anyone quoting the Fimbra membership number 2743 and the Securities and Investments Board number 121104. Fimbra believes the numbers are being used by two unauthorised individuals.

GPG escape

The UK Financial Reporting Review Panel is not acting against GPG, the investment vehicle of Brierley Investments' founder Sir Ron Brierley, although the firm's report and accounts for the year to 30 September 1991 failed to comply with two accounting standards.

Qantas soars

Qantas, the Australian state-owned airline, announced a 209 per cent rise in net profit to Adollars 137m (pounds 59m) for the year to 30 June. Qantas is to be privatised next year.

Oil discovery

A consortium including Norsk Hydro and British Gas has found a 'promising' oil deposit in the Danish sector of the North Sea.

Eau my

Societe Generale, the French banking group, made net profits of Fr1.977bn (pounds 238m) in the first half of 1992, up from Fr1.833bn a year earlier. The figures included a Fr168m net gain from the sale of its holding in Source Perrier to Nestle.

SAS cuts prices

Scandinavian Airline Systems is cutting business class fares by 10-35 per cent on all European destinations after 1 November.

Grand Met deal

Grand metropolitan, the international food, drinks and retailing group, has bought Knack & Back, a German refrigerated dough business, from Philip Morris. Knack's sales were pounds 12m last year.

World Markets

New York: Fear that an interest rate cut may be delayed until after the election sent the Dow Jones Average down 25.94 points to 3,152.25 at the close.

Hong Kong: The Hang Seng index reversed early losses to end up 35.91 at 5,589.03.

Tokyo: Heavy program selling drove the Nikkei index 156.36 lower at 17,111.74.

Johannesburg: A sharp rise in the value of the financial rand dragged the overall index down 21 to 3,082.

Milan: Speculative interest in Fiat group shares lifted the MIB index 19 points to 730.

Stockholm: A cut in the marginal lending rate propelled the all-share index 1.85 per cent higher at 654.50 in volatile trading.

Frankfurt: Bargain-hunting in the wake of recent sharp losses boosted the DAX index 15.75 to 1,436.05.

Paris: Share prices rose sharply on hopes of lower German interest rates. The CAC-40 index closed 41.64 higher at 1,654.15.