Business and City in Brief

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Modern coal pit to close

One of Britain's most modern coal pits is set to close with the loss of 1,400 jobs in a move that could herald a new wave of mine closures.

Trentham Colliery in Staffordshire is due to close after losing pounds 20m in the past six months. British Coal said these losses meant its business plan could no longer be achieved.

Union officials yesterday urged management to give the colliery more time to improve production.

Foster's cash call

Foster's, the Australian brewer, is trying to raise Adollars 1bn ( pounds 400m) in a two-for-five rights issue. The rights plan was revealed as the company reported a loss of Adollars 950m for the year to 30 June.

Details, page 30

Russian finance

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development is to take a 36 per cent initial equity stake in the Russian Project Finance bank, a new banking institution, for pounds 1.5m.

Abbey director

Sir Terence Hesier, permanent secretary until this year at the Department of the Environment, is to be a director of Abbey National.

Meaty payments

The judicial inquiry into allegations of corruption, tax evasion and political favouritism in the Irish beef industry heard the main Irish opposition party, Fine Gael, received Ir pounds 138,000 in payments from meat companies between 1987 and 1991.

King appointed

Lord King of Wartnaby, chairman of British Airways, has been appointed a non-executive director of Wide Range Engineering Services, a Leicester-based distributor of bearings and power tools.

Bail granted

Werner Rey, the Swiss financier, has been granted bail of dollars 200,000 ( pounds 105,000) by a court in Nassau. He faces extradition to Switzerland in connection with the collapse of the Omni Holdings empire.

Pay beats RPI

Pay increases have fallen sharply over the past year but are still rising faster than inflation, according to Hay Management Consultants.

Buoyant Bombay

Share prices soared on the Bombay stock exchange after the Indian government opened the capital markets to foreign institutional investors.

Olympia deal

Mutual of America said it had contracted with Olympia & York Properties to buy a 34- storey office building at 320 Park Avenue, New York. Details were not disclosed.

Ivory payment

(First Edition)

Ivory Coast has begun to liquidate two local branches of the Bank of Credit and Commerce International, repaying small and medium investors in full.

Oil stability

(First Edition)

Some members of Opec, including Saudi Arabia, have expressed satisfaction at current oil prices and may not drive them higher during winter.

World Markets

New York: Weak retail sales figures and slack bond prices pushed the Dow Jones average down 48.90 points to 3,327.32 by the close.

Tokyo: Closed (holiday).

Hong Kong: In sluggish trade the Hang Seng index moved ahead 46.69 points to 5,653.84.

Sydney: A heavy reported loss and rights issue from Foster's Brewing helped to weaken sentiment. The All Ordinaries index fell 6.2 points to 1,530.4.

Karachi: Reacting to flood damage to crops, shares fell for the sixth day running with the index down 9.26 at 1,136.97.

Johannesburg: Futures-related buying held prices steady. The index added 28 points to 3,178.

Frankfurt: Prices retreated in consolidation of Monday's gains. The DAX index eased 7.49 points to 1,587.55.

Paris: As caution returned, profit-takers lowered the CAC- 40 index 37.45 to 1,836.15.

Milan: Reversing its early post- devaluation euphoria, the MIB lost 1.74 per cent to 733.

London: Report, page 29.