Business and City Summary

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BRITAIN ONLY BRIGHT SPOT FOR CAR SALES

European Community passenger car registrations decreased by 13.9 per cent in October from the same month last year, according to the European Automobile Manufacturers Association, confirming that the market remains in deep recession.

The association added that Britain, where registrations rose by 15.5 per cent, remained the only bright spot. Spain and Greece were hardest hit. In the nine months to October registrations fell 15.4 per cent and a 17 per cent drop is forecast for the year as a whole.

TRIAL OPENS

The trial of Roger Levitt, the insurance salesman whose Levitt Group collapsed three years ago, gets under way at the Old Bailey today with the selection of a jury. Mr Levitt and three business associates are accused of trading with intent to defraud creditors. The prosecution is expected to open its case on Wednesday.

GERMAN PRICES

Prices of raw materials in Germany will ease by only 2 per cent in 1994 after a 9 per cent fall in the current year, according to the German Ifo economic research institute. It estimates that, on average, prices of industrial feedstocks will drop by 14 per cent in 1993, but they will rise by 4 per cent next year in line with the hoped-for economic recovery.

YIELDS PLUNGE

Yields on properties in the Hillier Parker index have registered their biggest quarterly fall since 1984, dropping 0.4 percentage points to 8.6 per cent. That brings the decline for the year to 0.6 percentage points, the largest annual drop since 1978. The firm expects the trend to continue for the rest of the year, spurred by the amount of money earmarked for investment in the market.

MORE POWERS WANTED

The Securities and Investments Board should have more powers to clamp down on insider dealing, its chairman, Andrew Large, said on the BBC's Money Programme last night. He called for the SIB to be given the power to fine, as well as ban, offenders. On the same programme the Stock Exchange chairman, Andrew Hugh-Smith, called for a central invesigatory body.

TODAY: 8.11.93

Credit business (September), producer price index (October).

Interims: British Empire Securities & General Trust, Prowting, Sharelink Investment Services.

Finals: Associated British Foods, Wardle Storeys.

TOMORROW: 9.11.93

CBI survey of distributive trades. US producer prices (Oct).

Interims: Anglian Water, Great Portland Estates, Hartlepools Water, Kleinwort High Income Trust, Mercury Asset Management, NMC Group, Norcros, SG Warburg Group.

Finals: James Dickie.

WEDNESDAY: 10.11.93

Balance of visible trade (August), Quarterly analysis of bank advances (third quarter). US jobless claims, consumer prices (Oct).

Interims: ACT Group, Amersham, Chamberlin & Hill, Cheam Group, Christie Group, Electrocomponents, European Colour, Henderson Administration, Ingham, Maddox, National Power, Personal Assets Trust.

Finals: J Bibby & Sons, Hambros, Novo Nordisk AS (third quarter), Scottish Value Trust.

THURSDAY: 11.11.93

Interims: Business Post, Channel Holdings, Drayton English & International, Oxford Instruments, Penna, Pilot Investment Trust, Staveley Industries, VSEL, John Waddington, Warner Howard Group, Wilshaw.

Finals: Jupiter European Inv Tst, Royal Dutch (third quarter), Royal Insurance Holdings (third quarter), Shell Transport & Trading (third quarter), Burton.

FRIDAY: 12.11.93

Index of output of the production industries (Sept), manufacturing output (Sept). US retail sales (Oct).

Interims: Drayton Korea Trust, Jessups, Kleinwort Emerging Markets, Sketchley, Somic Public, Unilever (third quarter).

Finals: Goodhead Group.

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