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Aug 10, 2011

SocGen shares plunge 21 percent on rumor whirlwind

LONDON/PARIS (Reuters) – Shares in French bank Societe Generale (SOGN.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) fell more than 21 percent on a whirlwind of market rumors, before a spokeswoman categorically denied all rumors relating to the bank’s financial solidity.

“SocGen categorically denies all the market rumors,” the bank spokeswoman told Reuters.

Jul 29, 2011

Raw materials prices hit Schneider margin forecast

PARIS, July 29 (Reuters) – French power specialist Schneider
Electric said full-year core margin would be at the
bottom end of previous targets after raw material prices had a
higher than expected impact on first-half results.

Coming a day after its domestic rival Legrand said price
increases had allowed it to protect margins, Schneider’s news
prompted a sharp drop in its shares. After being briefly halted
limit-down at the start of trade, the stock was down 2.9 percent
by 0843 GMT.

Jul 28, 2011

Greece may cost Credit Agricole up to Eur 850 mln

PARIS, July 28 (Reuters) – French bank Credit Agricole
said an expected loss at its Emporiki (CBGr.AT: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) unit
and its participation in the EU Greek rescue plan, would force
it to take a second-quarter provision of up to 850 million euros
($1.22 billion).

For France’s third-largest bank, which is majority owned by
a network of cooperative regional banks, the Greek crisis is the
latest in a series of recent missteps, which also saw a
disastrous foray into investment banking.

Jul 28, 2011

Lafarge says raw material costs hit Q2

PARIS, July 28 (Reuters) – France’s Lafarge (LAFP.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), the
world’s largest cement maker, said second-quarter operating
income fell 16 percent, missing analysts’ forecasts, as higher
raw material costs took their toll.

Lafarge, which recently entered into exclusive talks to sell
its European and South American plaster assets as part of a
wider debt reduction plan, has struggled to push through price
hikes to compensate for higher raw materials prices.

Jul 27, 2011

PPR eyes Brioni for around 350 million euros: sources

PARIS (Reuters) – French luxury goods and retail group PPR (PRTP.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is considering buying family-owned Italian tailor Brioni for about 350 million euros ($508.4 million), two sources familiar with the situation said on Wednesday.

The deal, if it goes ahead, would allow PPR to make further progress on its pledge to get out of retail and recentre on luxury and sports brands.

Jul 27, 2011

PPR eyes Brioni for around 350 mln eur – sources

PARIS, July 27 (Reuters) – French luxury goods and retail
group PPR (PRTP.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is considering buying family-owned Italian
tailor Brioni for about 350 million euros ($508.4 million), two
sources familiar with the situation said on Wednesday.

The deal, if it goes ahead, would allow PPR to make further
progress on its pledge to get out of retail and recentre on
luxury and sports brands.

Jul 26, 2011

France’s TF1 H1 profits rise 79 pct

PARIS, July 26 (Reuters) – France’s biggest broadcaster TF1
reported a stronger than expected 79 percent rise in
first-half operating profit as programming costs fell and group
advertising revenue rose.

Shares in TF1 jumped seven percent in early trading after
the company said operating profit climbed to 186.5 million euros
($267.5 million) and first half advertising revenue rose 4.7
percent to 905.2 million euros, helped by its digital
free-to-air channel TMC and Internet activities.

Jul 25, 2011

Analysis: UniCredit to lead cash queue if EU crisis worsens

LONDON/PARIS (Reuters) – UniCredit (CRDI.MI: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), Societe Generale (SOGN.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and Deutsche Bank (DBKGn.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) may have passed the recent health check of Europe’s banks, but they are likely to be among the first big lenders in need of cash if the euro zone crisis worsens.

Europe’s “stress test” of its lenders was widely derided as too soft, but it shone a light on potential trouble spots.

Jul 14, 2011

Lafarge in talks with Etex to sell plaster assets

PARIS (Reuters) – French cement maker Lafarge SA (LAFP.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) has entered exclusive talks to sell most of its plaster activities in Europe and South America to Belgium’s Etex Group for 850 million euros ($1.2 billion).

The deal would mean Lafarge, the world’s largest cement maker, will exceed its target of selling at least 750 million euros worth of assets as part of a plan to cut its debt by 2 billion euros.

Jul 6, 2011

Portugal adds to woes as banks assess Greek options

PARIS/LONDON (Reuters) – A credit rating downgrade for Portugal added to fears Europe’s banks face heavy losses on their euro zone lending if a private sector plan to help Greece comes unstuck, piling pressure on a meeting of creditors on Wednesday.

Banks, insurers and other creditors held a “productive” meeting in Paris and are assessing a range of options that could be attractive to different investors, the head of the Institute of International Finance (IIF) lobby group said.

    • About Christian

      "New York-based editor in charge of banks, exchanges, insurers, asset managers and hedge funds coverage as well as separate team that reports on mergers and acquisitions. Previously led aerospace and defense team, also in New York. Was initially hired by Reuters in Milan, where I covered banks and insurers. Before that I was at Bloomberg for 8 years, including a 3 year stint in Sao Paulo."
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