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Apr 17, 2014

Crisis-hit Co-op reveals 2013 loss of 2.5 billion pounds

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s Co-operative Group made a loss of 2.5 billion pounds ($4.2 billion) in 2013, in what the country’s biggest mutual described as disastrous and the worst 12 months in its 150-year history.

Co-op, which was hit by a 1.9 billion pound funding gap at its bank, a drugs scandal and an exodus of top executives, said on Thursday the results would serve as a wake-up call to the serious challenges that it faced.

Apr 17, 2014

Crisis-hit Co-op reveals 2013 loss of $4.2 billion

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s Co-operative Group (42TE.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) made a loss of 2.5 billion pounds ($4.2 billion) in 2013, in what the country’s biggest mutual described as disastrous and the worst 12 months in its 150-year history.

Co-op, which was hit by a 1.9 billion pound funding gap at its bank, a drugs scandal and an exodus of top executives, said on Thursday the results would serve as a wake-up call to the serious challenges that it faced.

Apr 16, 2014

Persimmon says housing demand picking up across Britain

LONDON, April 16 (Reuters) – British housebuilder Persimmon
said demand for new houses continued to strengthen,
helped by government intervention to help first-time buyers.

Persimmon, which builds homes across the country apart from
central London, said its new financial year had started well,
with private sale rates per site up 25 percent in the first 15
weeks of its year compared to a year ago.

Apr 15, 2014

TalkTalk teams up with Sky to bring superfast broadband to York

LONDON, April 15 (Reuters) – British broadband rivals
TalkTalk and BSkyB are building their own fibre
network in York that will deliver the fastest broadband speeds
available by sidestepping the BT network they rely on
elsewhere.

The two companies are joining up with AIM-listed CityFibre
, which has already installed a fibre infrastructure in
the city in northern England, to start the service next year,
they said on Tuesday.

Apr 15, 2014

Recruiter Page says all regions show growth in Q1

LONDON, April 15 (Reuters) – British recruiter Michael Page
International said its businesses in France and Germany
returned to growth in the first quarter, helping gross profit
rise a greater-than-expected 7 percent in constant-currency
terms.

The company, which mainly finds candidates to fill permanent
positions, reported gross profit of 126.6 million pounds ($212
million) on Tuesday, just ahead of an analyst consensus forecast
of 125.4 million pounds.

Apr 2, 2014

Competition watchdog to force HCA to sell London hospitals

LONDON, April 2 (Reuters) – Healthcare group HCA
International must sell one or more of its hospitals in London,
Britain’s competition regulator said on Wednesday, after finding
it had too strong a grip on the market for both self-pay and
insured patients.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) said it was
clear HCA’s market power in central London allowed it to charge
higher prices to insurers. The company, part of U.S.-based HCA
Holdings Inc, owned more than half of the available
overnight bed capacity, it said.

Mar 28, 2014

Canary Wharf owner boosted by jump in London property values

LONDON, March 28 (Reuters) – The strength of London’s
property market was thrown into sharp relief on Friday as
Songbird Estates Plc, main owner of the Canary Wharf
estate in east London, said the estimated value of its buildings
and planned developments had jumped by nearly half in the past
year.

Songbird shares leaped more than 14 percent to their highest
level in more than four years after its full-year results and
portfolio valuation beat analyst forecasts.

Mar 26, 2014

Bellway beats profit forecasts as UK house market strengthens

LONDON, March 26 (Reuters) – British housebuilder Bellway
beat first-half profit forecasts and predicted sales
volumes would rise as much as 20 percent in its full financial
year, adding to signs the country’s housing market is picking up
pace.

Fuelled by low interest rates and a government scheme to
help buyers raise deposits for new homes, Britain’s housing
market has been gathering strength, boosting consumer
confidence, but also stoking fears it could overheat.

Mar 25, 2014

HTC debuts flagship smartphone in race against Samsung

LONDON, March 25 (Reuters) – Taiwan’s HTC Corp
unveiled a new flagship smartphone on Tuesday, an upgrade to the
award-winning HTC One that it hopes will claw back some of the
market share lost to Samsung.

The HTC One M8 has a 5-inch display, slightly larger than
its predecessor, as well as improved camera technology, a faster
processor and updated software, the company said.

Mar 25, 2014

UK satellite operator used 19th century physics to trace missing plane

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s Inmarsat (ISA.L: Quote, Profile, Research) used a wave phenomenon discovered in the 19th century to analyse the seven pings its satellite picked up from Malaysia Airlines (MASM.KL: Quote, Profile, Research) Flight MH370 to determine its final destination.

The new findings led Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak to conclude on Monday that the Boeing 777, which disappeared more than two weeks ago, crashed thousands of miles away in the southern Indian Ocean, killing all 239 people on board.