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Outlook Billionaire Thomas Sandell is making it quite clear that it will take more than a couple of paracetamol to handle the headache he is causing for FirstGroup.

Clarke puts PRP tax relief on trial

PAUL WALLACE

Natural born billers

Every six minutes a lot of lawyers are a lot richer. Brian Cathcart looks at what they charge and how they justify it

C&G borrowers `could benefit from float'

A SENIOR building society figure has cast doubt on the claim by the Cheltenham & Gloucester Building Society that it is completely powerless to reward its borrowers when it gives up its mutual status.

The bizarre case of the blackballed alderman

BY JAMES BETHELL

George Soros buys stake in bid target Northern Electric

Trafalgar chief entitled to unlimited bonus, contracts show

How to account for a business crash : BUNHILL

THERE ARE people here who are convinced that Jeremy Hanley, the Tory party chairman, is not all he's made out to be. Bunhill is not one of the doubters, it must be said here and now.

Warburg crowned top of the flops: Of the past year's 132 floats, 77 are trading below their issue price, Independent on Sunday research reveals

S G WARBURG, one of the City's top merchant banking and securities houses, has brought more duds to the stock market than any other financial adviser in the last year, according to a survey of flotation flops by the Independent on Sunday.

Law: The appliance of science: Can organisational psychology help firms through recession? Paula Nicholson reports

Many legal firms are now paying the price for the rapid expansion of the Eighties. According to a recent Coopers & Lybrand survey, more than 250 will not survive the recession, which means many solicitors are either facing redundancy and curtailed career expectations, or considering ways to expand their skills.

Plantsbrook shares surge as SCI lifts holding to 8.5%

THE STRUGGLE to secure a toe- hold in the British funeral business intensified yesterday as SCI, the Texan company that recently acquired Great Southern, more than doubled its stake in Plantsbrook, the industry's largest quoted company.

City & Business: City smirks politely over costly funeral bid gaffe

THERE'S nothing like news of an almighty cock-up by a rival firm to animate the spirits of jaded City folk left holding the fort in the dog days of August. Between them Schroder, the eminent merchant bank, and Linklaters & Paines, the equally eminent lawyers, delivered in spades last week with an epic slip-up savoured across the Square Mile. The few merchant bankers and corporate lawyers not chasing the sun or the grouse at least had the compensation of gossiping about their rivals' acute discomfort.

Great Southern takeover cleared: Dismissal of rival bidder's objections leaves way clear for SCI

THE Takeover Panel yesterday waved through SCI's 775p-a-share offer for the funeral group Great Southern, dismissing an appeal from the Canadian group Loewen that the bid should be disallowed on a legal technicality.

Bid details haunt SCI advisers

THE aftermath of the battle for control of Great Southern, the funerals operator, is set to become more acrimonious than the bid itself, with advisers squabbling over who was to blame for the omission of a crucial phrase in a bid statement from SCI, the Texan company, writes Tom Stevenson.

Slaughter & May at the top

SLAUGHTER & May topped Acquisitions Monthly's league table for legal advisers in mergers and acquisitions in the first half of 1994, writes Diane Coyle. It acted for companies in five public takeovers worth a total of pounds 1.6bn - including LWT during its pounds 766m acquisition by Granada, and Westland in its takeover by GKN.

Escalating rail strike will test resolve on all sides

BOTH sides in the signal workers' dispute yesterday dug in for a long war of attrition in a conflict which is developing into the most damaging industrial action in the public sector for a decade.

Law: Law as a defining element in British culture: A fundamental difference of approach makes Italy a different market for UK firms to break into. Sharon Wallach reports on a week in Milan designed to help them

An interesting dilemma faced the British Council as it organised the recent British Law Week in Milan: Italian lawyers are not permitted to advertise. Publicising the event had, therefore, to be undertaken with a degree of delicacy. The Italian advertising rules could not be enforced on the British lawyers taking part in the week, but, says Martin Rose, the British Council's assistant director in Rome, they acted with courtesy towards their hosts.
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