Business and City in Brief

Bad debts blow to Bank of Scotland

An 11 per cent drop in profits before tax at Bank of Scotland to pounds 125.3m in the latest 12 months was blamed on sharply higher bad debts.

Specific bad debt provisions rose 54 per cent to pounds 361.9m and were found across the board in the UK. The bank said few customers required provisions of more than pounds 5m, but it is known to be a big lender to Isosceles and is thought to have lent about pounds 50m to Queens Moat.

Bottom Line, page 25

Walker appeals

George Walker has lodged an appeal against last week's High Court order making him Britain's second-biggest bankrupt, owing pounds 180m. A statement from his lawyers said that comments from the Vice Chancellor suggesting that he had adopted a 'cavalier' attitude to his creditors were 'unjustified and perverse'.

The appeal questions Sir Donald Nicholls' judgment on 15 different counts, including his assertion that Mr Walker and his wife, Jean, had shown no commitment to a voluntary arrangement with creditors.

L&G attacks

Legal & General Investments said yesterday that it has 'absolutely no confidence whatsoever' in the Government's counter-inflation strategy and urged a prompt return to the European exchange rate mechanism.

Ministers warned

The Commons Public Accounts Committee warned ministers against offering over-generous incentives in future sales of shares in PowerGen and National Power.

Japanese record

Japan's current account surplus reached a record of dollars 126.08bn in the year to 31 March, up from dollars 90.22bn a year earlier.

Amex purchase

American Express is paying dollars 115m for Nyman & Schultz, a business travel agency in Scandinavia.

Slough response

Slough Estates said its pounds 147m rights issue has been taken up by 87.1 per cent of shareholders.

In default

Beechcroft Insurance Brokers of Derby has been declared in default by the Investors Compensation Scheme. This allows 30 investors to claim compensation for the pounds 500,000 they are thought to have lost. Police are investigating.

Coats offer accepted

About 90 per cent of Coats Viyella's shareholders have accepted its offer of an improved share dividend. Of these, 12 per cent have taken advantage of Barclays de Zoete Wedd's special dealing terms to sell the shares.

BT contracts

BT has awarded two contracts for advanced transmission equipment worth more than pounds 20m to Sweden's Ericsson and GPT, a subsidiary of GEC.

Woman at helm

Anthea Rose became the first woman to head a UK professional organisation when she was appointed chief executive of the Chartered Association of Certified Accountants.

Bulgarian banks

(First Edition)

Bulgaria is to merge a further 21 banks into two new institutions as part of its bank restructuring and privatisation programme.

Task force

(First Edition)

The Institute of Chartered Accountants has set up a task force to strengthen its ability to give members help and advice on professional matters. It is also to carry out a review of members' regulatory and bureaucratic obligations.

World Markets

New York: Trading in a very narrow range, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 7.20 points down at 3,441.90 by mid-afternoon.

Tokyo: Resuming after the extended holiday, prices closed lower on index-linked selling with the Nikkei average showing a 296.15- point deficit at 20,623.03.

Hong Kong: Profit-taking sent the Hang Seng index down 33.81 to 6,795.52. Hongkong Land fell 20 cents to HKdollars 13.50 after the Trafalgar House loss announcement.

Sydney: Strong buying interest in blue chips saw the All Ordinaries index close near the day's high at 1,691.9, up 17.2 points.

Johannesburg: With gold shares still advancing, the overall index added six points to 3,766.

Frankfurt: The Bundesbank's decision to leave lending rates unchanged erased early gains, leaving the DAX index just 0.1 of a point higher at 1,623.26.

Paris: The CAC-40 index retreated 5.85 points to 1,920.49.

Milan: Shares closed weaker but off early lows, with the MIB 0.17 per cent easier at 1,194.

London: Report, page 24.

News
The clocks go forward an hour at 1am on Sunday 30 March
news
Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor finds himself in a forest version of London in Doctor Who episode 'In the Forest of the Night'
TVReview: Is the Doctor ever going stop frowning? Apparently not.
Sport
footballMatch report: Real fight back to ruin Argentinian's debut
News
Bruce, left, with Cream bandmates Ginger Rogers, centre, and Eric Clapton in 1967
people
PROMOTED VIDEO
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Money
Welcome to tinsel town: retailers such as Selfridges will be Santa's little helpers this Christmas, working hard to persuade shoppers to stock up on gifts
news
News
i100
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Architect Frank Gehry is regarded by many as the most important architect of the modern era
arts + entsGehry has declared that 98 per cent of modern architecture is "s**t"
Arts and Entertainment
Soul singer Sam Smith cleared up at the Mobo awards this week
arts + entsSam Smith’s Mobo triumph is just the latest example of a trend
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Compensation and Benefits Manager - Brentwood - Circa £60,000

£60000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Compensation and Benefits Manager - Compensat...

Data Analyst/Planning and Performance – Surrey – Up to £35k

£30000 - £35000 Per Annum plus excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions...

IT Systems Business Analyst - Watford - £28k + bonus + benefits

£24000 - £28000 per annum + bonus & benefits: Ashdown Group: IT Business Syste...

Markit EDM (CADIS) Developer

£50000 - £90000 per annum + benefits: Ampersand Consulting LLP: Markit EDM (CA...

Day In a Page

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
DIY is not fun and we've finally realised this as a nation

Homebase closures: 'DIY is not fun'

Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month - but can you stomach the sweetness?

Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month

The combination of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg (and no actual pumpkin), now flavours everything from lattes to cream cheese in the US
11 best sonic skincare brushes

11 best sonic skincare brushes

Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo

Paul Scholes column

I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Jones and Rojo
Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

While other sports are stalked by corruption, we are an easy target for the critics
Jamie Roberts exclusive interview: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Jamie Roberts: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Wales centre says he’s not coming home but is looking to establish himself at Racing Métro
How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker