Business and City Summary

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Trafalgar rights take-up is high

The pounds 204.5m rights issue by Trafalgar House looked to have been comfortably subscribed by yesterday's close with the take-up expected to be between 80 and 90 per cent.

Shares in the conglomerate have stayed comfortably above the 60p rights price since the issue was launched last month, and they closed up 1p at 75.5p yesterday. The strength of the shares means most shareholders are likely to take up their entitlement, although the final result will not be announced until later today.

Dairy Farm issue

Dairy Farm International, the Hong Kong company that owns 28 per cent of Kwik Save, plans a dollars 202m rights issue of convertible preference shares. Jardine Strategic Holdings, which owns 46 per cent of Dairy Farm, is raising dollars 358.5m through a similar issue.

German rate move

The German repo rate could rise by up to 0.2 of a percentage point today, economists believe, following the announcement of a variable rate repo.

Amex hires Time

American Express's Travel Related Services will pay Time Warner's Time Incorporated an annual fee to manage most of its publishing division's operations.

44% pay rise for Akers

Roger Akers, chief executive of the paint company Manders, which successfully fought off a hostile takeover bid by Kalon last summer, took a 44 per cent pay rise in 1992 to pounds 218,000.

Frogmore's pounds 16m buy

Frogmore Estates, the property firm, will pay pounds 15.75m for Jaguar Properties, which owns a six-block, 91-flat, residential property on Marylebone Road, London. It will finance the purchase through the issue of 2.6 million shares and pounds 5.7m cash.

VW sales plummet

Worldwide sales of the German auto giant Volkswagen fell 12.6 per cent to 488,000 vehicles in January- February compared with the same period last year. The group expects German sales this year to fall 20 per cent on 1992 after a 28.8 per cent decline in the first two months.

Containers profit boost

Sea Containers, the shipping and transport group, reported profits of dollars 39.8m for the year to 31 December, including dollars 6.2m from a litigation settlement, after dollars 25.5m previously. Revenue rose 9 per cent to dollars 421m. Results from the marine container leasing unit improved, while income from the ferry and port and leisure units declined.

Clark still divided

The divided board of C&J Clark, the shoe manufacturer, will convene again on Friday after failing to agree which offer for the company to recommend to shareholders.

World Markets

New York: In featureless trading shares tended to move narrowly with the Dow Jones Average ending down 1.62 points to 3,461.86 by the close.

Tokyo: The stronger yen and tension over political developments in Russia pushed the Nikkei Average 292.77 lower at 18,492.49.

Hong Kong: The property sector led the Hang Seng index 57.91 higher at 6,117.95.

Sydney: The All Ordinaries index shed 4.8 to 1,659 on disappointment over the size of interest rate cuts.

Johannesburg: Gold and industrial shares ended lower on a firmer commercial rand. The gold index eased 20 to 1,143.

Milan: Short-covering helped to lift the MIB index 1.22 per cent to 1,077.

Frankfurt: The DAX index shed 12.96 to 1,648.44 on profit-taking in the wake of sharp rises in the banking sector.

Paris: Bargain-hunting and a firmer franc nudged the CAC-40 index 12.90 points better at 1,952.18 in thin volume.

London: Report, page 26.