Monthly Archives: November 2012

China worries weigh on Yum Brands

Shares of Yum Brands fell more than 10 per cent on Friday on fears that recent struggles in its China business are worsening. The company, which operates KFC, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut, announced late on Thursday that it expected same-store sales to decline 4 per cent year-on-year in China during the fourth-quarter. David Novak, Yum’s chief executive, said that…

Taylor Wimpey lifted by lending hopes

Taylor Wimpey was among the biggest gainers in a flat London market on Friday on hopes of a mortgage lending recovery. UBS turned positive on housebuilders including Taylor Wimpey and Bellway . It estimated that banks’ mortgage funding costs have fallen from about 4 per cent at the start of the year to just above 2 per cent. As a…

Spanish banks surge on acquisition talk

Spanish banks surged this week amid optimism about dealmaking in the sector. Banco de Sabadell gained on speculation it would buy Banco Mare Nostrum. The shares gained 8.8 per cent to €2.15 over the week. “The proposed acquisition . . . highlights opportunities for stronger institutions to acquire assets put up for sale by banks with weaker balance sheets in Spain,” Fitch Ratings wrote…

Muddy Waters rebuts key Olam accusation

Muddy Waters, the US short seller, on Friday denied it was acting in concert with hedge funds to drive down shares in Olam, rebutting a key accusation by the Singapore-listed commodity business as the mud-slinging between the two continued. Olam has spent this week defending itself against a raft of allegations made by Muddy Waters about the state of its…

PICC raises $3bn after pricing HK listing

China’s PICC Group on Friday priced its Hong Kong listing near the bottom of the expected range as a result of muted institutional demand but the Chinese insurer still raised almost half as much cash as all the other flotations in the city this year. The group, which presold about half of the shares to cornerstone investors including AIG of…

Shaftesbury basks in London’s limelight

Shaftesbury, the West End-focused landlord, posted strong results for the 12 months to October on the back of what its chairman described as a “truly memorable year for London”. The group, which owns 500 properties – predominantly shops – spanning 13 acres of Carnaby Street, Covent Garden and Soho, bolstered its position as the largest landlord in the central London…

All eyes on what’s left of Invensys

©Alamy Down the line: Investors appear to have priced in a possible bid for what is left of Invensys, pushing up the share price 27 per cent in one day The red signal that had stopped the sale of Invensys finally turned to green this week when the British engineering group agreed the £1.7bn disposal of its rail division to…

Gold miners among biggest gainers

Gold miners were among the gainers as the London market reached a three-week high. Petropavlovsk rose 1.4 per cent to 328.1p and Centamin added 6.8 per cent to 59.5p with Westhouse analysts putting “buy” recommendations on both stocks. “We believe gold share valuations are now compelling,” it said. “Gold mining company managements are beginning to realise that to regain investor…

Hitachi and Mitsubishi Heavy in tie-up

Two of Japan’s top industrial conglomerates are to merge their thermal power plant units, mounting a challenge to Siemens and GE at a time of growing uncertainty over the global outlook for fossil-fuelled power. In a deal sketched out on Thursday evening, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Hitachi will set up a joint venture, beginning operations in January 2014, bringing together…

DNB rally ends on dividend concerns

A recent rally in DNB came to an abrupt halt on Wednesday after investors speculated that the Norwegian lender might not be able to pay future dividends. Their concerns were prompted by a report from the Norwegian central bank warning the country’s lenders should be obliged to hold more capital in order to reflect risky loans. DNB’s shares fell 5.5…