Business and City Summary

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The Independent Online
US TO TAKE TOUGH STANCE ON TRADE

The Clinton administration yesterday served notice that it will demand 'comparable access' to foreign markets before making concessions itself.

Mickey Kantor, the new US trade representative, said: 'We are no longer the world's only economic power. Look at Europe and look at Japan. We obviously need to play on the same level playing field.'

The remarks, made ahead of talks in Washington on Thursday with the EC's new external trade commissioner, Sir Leon Brittan, signalled that the Clinton administration will take a tough position on trade issues, even at the risk of being accused of protectionism or sparking trade conflicts.

CHEAPER DEALS

Competition between brokers for private UK investors in Wall Street is expected to intensify as Sharelink, the execution-only broker, today launches a cheaper method of dealing in US shares, cutting the minimum commission from pounds 95 to pounds 26.

SHARES FAVOURED

Institutional fund managers plan to increase their holdings of British shares and index- linked gilts, according to the latest survey by Smith New Court. But a majority are planning to cut their exposure to conventional gilts.

BROKER RETURNS

Gilbert Eliott today rejoins the stock market after five partners negotiated to reclaim the name from GiroCredit Bank of Vienna, which withdrew from the market last November.

TODAY: 8.2.93

Credit business (December). UK cyclical indicators (January - first estimate).

Interims: Peter Black Holdings, Bryant Group, John Menzies, US Smaller Cos Inv Tst.

Finals: EFM Java Trust, Hafslund Nycomed.

TOMORROW: 9.2.93

Producer price index (January). First full meeting of Treasury's panel of independent economists with Norman Lamont. Basle: EC Central Bank governors' meeting.

Finals: L M Ericsson, Manchester Ship Canal, Reuters Holdings.

WEDNESDAY: 10.2.93

Index of production for Scotland (third quarter).

Interims: C H Bailey, Benson Group, Elbief.

Finals: Kleinwort Overseas Inv Tst, Scottish American Inv.

THURSDAY: 11.2.93

Details of employment, unemployment, earnings, prices and other indicators. Capital issues and redemption (January). Capital spending by manufacturing industries (fourth quarter - provisional). Frankfurt: Eddie George, Bank of England Governor-elect, and Hans Tietmeyer, of the Bundesbank, speak on currency policy. US retail sales.

Interims: BOC Group, Industrial Control Services, Pantheon Intnl Part, Symonds Engineering.

Finals: British Petroleum, British Telecom, General Consolidated Inv Tst.

FRIDAY: 12.2.93

Usable steel production (January). Retail prices index and tax and price index (January). US producer prices index.

Finals: Alexanders Holdings, Lloyds Bank.

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